May 23, 2006

Undone …

This is something Matt over at Fireflies in the Cloud came up with. (Actually, we are moving today and since I don’t have the time to write a post while in the midst of all the moving, I cheated and wrote the post last night – or it would be last night by the time you read it :p) He wanted people to post the first few lines from two to five unfinished stories that they had on their hard drive. My problem is, I can’t find anything that I can post :p

I don’t actually start stories and leave them unfinished – I’m too obsessive-compulsive for that :p That is, I don’t start writing a story and leave it unfinished. OK, maybe that’s not absolutely true. There is "Basement of the Universe" – my next novel, which I started and did not continue work on but that is only because I’m still working on "Honest, the Martian Ate Your Dog" – the first novel in that sequence :) So, hopefully, I will get back to "Basement" eventually. What I usually do do however, is to jot down an idea for a story or a fragment of a story and never continue with it. So I guess I’m going to post those fragments (and most of them are from around ’95 to ’97). The one exception to that is my first entry but I’ll tell that story after I paste the fragment ..

1. Pascal walked quickly down the rainswept streets of New Colombo. He dodged between the steaming stalls selling flash-fried squid and krill and the vendors hawking their cheap fabrics from Papua. His lanky figure strode with a purposeful feel to it, as if this was a man who had someplace to go, things to do.

2. The scene before Pascal seemed to disappear like a screen-saver at the press of a button. He realised that the holo-dream sequence that he’d been recording had been abruptly terminated but couldn’t for the life of him imagine why. He looked up in irritation from the contoured couch he’d been lying on at Rohit, the man who was going to buy the sequence.

So why’d I paste two fragments? That’s the story behind the story :p Actually, the above fragments are from "Jumpshock". A friend of mine, Afdhel Aziz, and I collaborated on this story at that time. The idea was that he’d write one segment, then I’d write the next and then he’d write another and so on. The first fragment was the opening segment written by Afdhel and the second bit was the part I began writing the story. It was a strange story set in a Colombo of the future. But it went nowhere since Afdhel and I began one-upping each other :p We weren’t working on a single storyline that we’d both agreed upon. Instead, we were simply taking the story where we wanted. He had some sort of a gangster tale in mind and I took it in a different direction by making his story just something that the character was dreaming up as part of a holo-dream sequence – I swear, I had not seen "Strange Days" at that point in time :p Anyway, the back and forth between us to gain control of the story made for some funny moments but not an interesting story … So it kind of just faded away.

However, now that I look at the story, it has some interesting ideas … and some not so interesting ones – mainly mine :p So I might actually want to dust it off and do something with it … I don’t know …

I did look at the other stuff I wanted to post but all of them turned out to be useless since there was nothing to it. They are all just story ideas – not actual beginnings for a story. I’m not even sure I want to use any of those ideas, let alone go posting them on the Net :p

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Tags: Writing
Posted by Fahim at 7:01 am   Comments (4)