Monday, February 20, 2006

(ssf) warren jay meanwell: the complete and annotated discography

This week's short short fiction assignment was to write a story that's a list. Given that I am supposed to be doing three presentations on different topics in the next eleven days, things are a little hectic here. The story was originally going to be titled "[artist name]: The Complete and Annotated Discography", but, despite various tries based on great suggestions from readers and others, I decided it was better without a name. So the result is currently titled "The Complete and Annotated Discography" and is available here. It feels suspciously like something I would have written at age nineteen, but then again I'm not sure that anything about me relevant for fictional production has so much improved since age nineteen as just changed. As always, let me know if you have any comments or suggestions that will not gut my joie de vivre or make me cry.

Update, Monday AM: I wake up to an e-mail that says: "Yes, that story is nothing compared to your others. Brave of you to post it, especially given that your others have been so good." To which all I can say is: (1) thanks for the compliment about my previous efforts [and my courage] and (2) you try writing a story that's a list. (Indeed, if you could try by Tuesday 8pm ET and would be willing to let me turn that in for my class instead, that might be especially helpful.) But I do agree with the person's basic point, I suppose. My other list-story ideas were, I'm confident, worse. At least it's short. Here, just read my shortbread story instead. Ugh. SSF is harder than it looks.

Update, Monday AM still: Revised (shortened). Title is now just "Discography" until/unless something better comes along.

Update, Monday PM: Title is now back to what it was when I started writing the story (post title has been changed accordingly).

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

What I liked about the notes: each one could lead to a JF short story some day.

To give the piece more story drive, can you cut some of the detail to free up the action line that starts to develop?

It doesn't need a list author's name, but maybe the title could ground it more: eg 'the complete and annotated discography', notes found under a diner booth table.

Or whatever. Again, thanks for sharing! Good luck with this week's ssf...

jeremy said...

Thanks. I did take out some of the earlier detail, to get to the "action line" more quickly.

carly said...

For the record, I like it. I mean, possibly not as good as "shortbread" or "marshmallow," but great nonetheless.

Hmm, I feel inspired to try and write my own list-style SSF....

jeremy said...

Carly: Do it! Preferably in the next 24 hours.

carly said...

Dude, this fiction thing is tough. Nonetheless, I made an attempt.

brady said...

Those song titles sound like undiscovered Guided By Voices tracks.

Of course, maybe I just think that 'cause I like to think up titles for GBV songs.

Henry said...

I thought it was stupendous. Very funny.

Ann Althouse said...

I loved it! It provided a nicely arch and distant encounter with a woeful little man. The list is all we need or want to know about him. This made it especially funny.

john said...

Don't take crap, Freese. I liked it a lot.

Anonymous said...

This was my favorite so far! Keep writing and posting.
~pj

jeremy said...

Thanks for the compliments! And thanks to my morning e-mailer for the positive effect their missive had on the story.

morning emailer said...

i'm not happy with the name. especially the middle name.

Anonymous said...

You are NOT the morning emailer, 8:14am.

Another great story, JF!

-E.A.

NOT the morning emailer said...

e.a. - well, i guess you are then, e.a. so, good work getting jeremy to change the story. your powers are amazing. kudos to you.

jeremy - what's with "jay?" why not just give him a middle initial? that is such a cop-out of a middle name.

jeremy said...

NTME: Any alternative middle name suggestions?

EA: Thanks as always.

NTME said...

no. because i don't think you should go with three names. and you already have suggestions for first names from me.