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An Introduction.

EDIT: Will and I were discussing the intricacies of standardized testing and it devolved horribly. It should be exceedingly clear who is who in this situation (WILL: consider our former backgrounds). At one point we definitely started emulating Adam Parrish and Richard Campbell Gansey III, bonus points if you can figure out when. Also I hadn’t yet read Vicious by V.E Schwab during this fine June evening, but we sort of tap-danced into that territory as well.

It’s really important to us both that you understand that these were actual, real life Twitter DMs we sent each other this summer. There was no ulterior motive. Welcome to our website  : – )


 

KNIGHT: The ACT and I are due to be married on the 8th of July actually

BOY KING: i’ll pull some mischief and trickery leading to an annulment of your marriage and then i will ask the ACT for her hand and our wedding will then be the 13th of july.

KNIGHT: Ugh the boy king can never let us be happy

KNIGHT: This is why you’ll get overthrown

BOY KING: maybe so but i will die a married royal

KNIGHT: Married to someone who loved you SECOND

BOY KING: BUT LOVED ME NONETHELESS! the act will never know the truth behind the circumstances and you will fade into oblivion

KNIGHT: Perhaps but I will fade with HONOR

BOY KING: and i will have my LEGACY. see we all win

KNIGHT: A legacy of betrayal and cruelty and insanity

KNIGHT: A legacy that died soon

KNIGHT: Is THAT what you want

BOY KING: my legacy will never die and it will be a legacy of justice that will NOT be marred by this objective lapse in judgement

BOY KING: i will do what i MUST for love and revenge even if my actions are tinted by my descent into madness

KNIGHT: Boy kings ARE! NOT! JUSTICE!

KNIGHT: To be a boy king is to marr a system with childishness and immaturity

BOY KING: YOU WONT BE ALIVE LONG ENOUGH TO SPREAD YOUR SLANDER

Continue reading “An Introduction.”

Searching for Invisible Strings

“Cat Chant admired his elder sister Gwendolen. She was a witch. Great changes came about in their lives and left him no one else to cling to… Perhaps Cat contracted a little to make room for her– he did not know.”

Charmed Life, Diana Wynne Jones.

This is what it feels like: the crossed hands of worship and betrayal, twisted tight into the fabric of your clothes, close to your stomach. These hands are digging their nails in, rubbing through your shirt in a way that makes you imagine the speed of a boat, the path it cuts into water with big foamy strokes, the way it possesses a placement on top of displacement that is, for whatever reason, endlessly appealing to you.

This is what it feels like: a crash as the silverware stacked at the bottom of the stairs goes airborne. We can walk down this spiral staircase forever, you know. We could run down it and we would never be able to rescue a single glass or plate or bowl from its destiny to be shattered, in shambles and shards right where a child could crash and bleed.

Continue reading “Searching for Invisible Strings”

PLAY IN WHICH I ENCOUNTER MANY DIFFERENT ME’S, AND THE OTHER THING.

What’s preserved, what’s destroyed and what’s salvaged: the remains of a body is the story being told.

The stage is this: The author and the character walk into a bar. You know how the story goes. Gunshots, fire, a few deaths and a critic wetting his pen as he prepares to write about the explosive tension between reality and fiction, character and actor, author and novel.

ACT ONE: A GUIDE ON DEALING WITH YOUR OWN GENERAL INSANITY. IN WHICH THE AUTHOR IS OVERRUN BY CHAIRS.

Continue reading “PLAY IN WHICH I ENCOUNTER MANY DIFFERENT ME’S, AND THE OTHER THING.”

the city: a retrospective on home, leaving, and why we lie

note: this piece was submitted for a class I have; the prompt was to write a migration myth and this was my result; the featured image is by Maxfield Parrish

There is a city in the middle of the desert. Sometimes it is a nation and sometimes it is drenched, depending on the month and the population and if the gods predicted it to be a rainy season or if they’d be punishing us, again, with arid heat like the tongue of a lion. Sometimes the city is abandoned and then it is not a city but a graveyard slash ghost town, a difference only determined by the state of its architecture. Unfortunately I come from a long line of census takers, and it is my burden (counterpoint: it is my birth right) (counterpoint: it is my career choice) (counterpoint: it is my fate) (counterpoint: I get paid for this, so who cares?) as the last in this long line to do an annual pilgrimage and check up on this city in service of The Archives.

Continue reading “the city: a retrospective on home, leaving, and why we lie”

How To Kill The Boy Who Loves You: A Test of Mettle.

A.)

It’s easy, really. All you have to do is take the knife. You’ve done it before, you can do it again. No? Fine, then. A sword—you always liked swords, anyway. You and your illusions of something better, something steadfast and clear, but what you’ve forgotten—what you never understood in the first place—is that a Knight is loyalty incarnate. A Knight is devoted. To protection, to the people, to a single person, at the very least. You’ve only ever been devoted to your own derelict conscience—Don’t argue. It doesn’t matter how much you hate yourself. To want redemption as badly as you do is, luckily enough, proof that there can be devotion in the lies we tell ourselves. It’s the short end of the stick, maybe, but you knew which end you were leaving yourself with when you drenched the wishbone in blood, so tell the mirror whatever you’d like, but you can’t lie to us that easily. You have an idea of sacrifice, but he’s always been better at it than you. Never trust yourself with the abstract. Rules were made to keep voluntary robots like you in order—maybe all your codes of chivalry were only ever a manual on how to do the right thing. Maybe we’re being too hard on you. If that’s what it is, it makes sense that you’re obsessed. You wouldn’t know what the right thing to do is, even if he saved you from yourself for the hundredth time. 

Continue reading “How To Kill The Boy Who Loves You: A Test of Mettle.”

The Story of Desperation: a Love Letter to Middle Grade Literature

How well acquainted are you with how it feels to fall? I ask you this lovingly, my hands cupping yours because touch is a gift, and I know this well.

How often have you tumbled through a rabbit hole? Been shoved through an enchanted mirror? Skipped down the wrong forest path? And, of course, when was the last time you leant forward a little too far, until you found yourself falling headfirst into a story?

It’s been a long time. We both know this well.

Continue reading “The Story of Desperation: a Love Letter to Middle Grade Literature”

“To Mind The Wolf, To Heed The Witch, To Honor The Giant:” The Enduring Inevitability of The Relationship Between Folklore, Fairy Tales, Fiction, & The Human Being

Got permission from my Writing The Essay: Arts and the World teacher to post my first final essay! BIG credit to my wonderful friend, Will, the true Folk Tales And Fiction Scholar, for providing me with these sources when I was freaking out the night before my first draft was due ❤

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For me, growing up has been a retrospective affair. The older I get, the more responsibility I carry for remembering all the people I’ve been. With each passing birthday, I tuck another year of living into my cosmic pocket. And while I do feel the weight of that, it isn’t a burden on me–I want to remember. Not just because of the age old cliches, repeating history and all of that, but more so because I believe that who we are is intrinsically tied to who we were. What did we love as children? Why? How did we get treated because of it? It’s impossible to catalogue every moment that helped to define us–we would have to catalogue every moment, then–but there’s different ways to trace our own footsteps, and the footsteps of others, as well. However, it’s easiest to begin confronting a jigsaw with the individual: my first puzzle piece would have to be my grandfather’s love of literature, a love he passed on to me when I was very young. And just by writing that down, I feel like my understanding of why I’ve always been a reader has deepened. My grandfather would recite poems, and tell stories, and gift me folktale collections, and this being a rather universal scene didn’t detract from how personal it felt to us both. I remember poring over books about little girls named Goldilocks and Jack’s giant beanstalk; these were stories that felt my own. It never occurred to me that I was sharing in a longstanding tradition of keeping fiction alive by consuming it. I was just a regular kid who’d been encouraged; I doubt there’s any being more powerful than that. Sometimes, I would take my books to school and read during class–almost always, my teacher snatched it away. She said I should be doing my work instead. I told her that I’d finished. She said I should focus on extra practice, instead of wasting my time. Wasting my time. I couldn’t wrap my head around reading being a waste of time, even to a child–especially to a child. It’s something I’ve never quite forgotten. 

Continue reading ““To Mind The Wolf, To Heed The Witch, To Honor The Giant:” The Enduring Inevitability of The Relationship Between Folklore, Fairy Tales, Fiction, & The Human Being”

Rock Candy, Cults, and Communal Storytelling: Comedy in Dimension 20

WARNING: Spoilers up to episode 9 of A Crown of Candy, and for the first season of Fantasy High.

There’s something I find fascinating about actual-play D&D shows and podcasts. In a lot of ways it reminds me of theatre, wherein exaggerated emotions and an inherently campy acting/playing style take hold as a way to make up for an inability to lavishly render the story’s world through sets. As a theatrical medium, actual play has you watching someone construct a story for in real time, an “‘Epic Theatre’… where the stories are told by somebody for a purpose… you go to see a world created for you by somebody who has a reason for doing it.” [1] Actual-play is theatre of the mind, where people play characters they are building and growing closer to with every action they make. It’s a genre where the finished product (to an extent! I don’t discount the hard work of editors in any medium) is created as the story begins. For me, it’s a triumph to watch and enjoy, and it’s reoriented the way I think about storytelling.

Continue reading “Rock Candy, Cults, and Communal Storytelling: Comedy in Dimension 20”