Friday, April 5, 2019

Tri Odd: An Exploration of the Quirky, a Free Ebook

What do you do when you've finished your novel, published it, and are ready to embark on the next project? I decided to stretch my writing envelope, to try some characterizations, genres, and topics that I had not attempted before. One consequence of that experiment in writing is the free ebook Tri Odd, three flash fiction stories where I set some writing ground rules that were--for me, anyway--non-typical.

I wanted to write about characters I didn't like or admire. I wanted to try writing something besides fantasy, to "cleanse my palate" after my hundred-thousand-word novel The Stone Dragon. I wasn't tired of fantasy; I just wanted to try something new. The end result was a science fiction story, a thriller/horror story, and a crime story. Macabre? Quirky? Maybe, but experiments under a thousand words. I wasn't ready to channel Stephen King for a couple hundred thousand words.

"Cull" is a story about a retired English teacher, a wiry, elderly woman who is very much in control . . . and as hard as nails. She loves rabbits, breeds them for show, and has organized her life just as she wants it to be. Then an interruption occurs and the story begins. "Cull" was originally published in Metazen, an online daily fiction site which is now defunct.

"In the Beginning" is a science fiction story that was fun to write. I enjoy reading science fiction but had not ever written in the genre. The story provides a science fictional perspective to the Biblical story Genesis and how humanity has always had this thing about following directions. It was published by the online flash fiction website 365tomorrows, on New Year's Day.

"Spider" is a thriller/horror story. I'm not sure it can be classified as "horror" because I don't wallow in the creep factor, but there is a slow and subtle sidling up to the macabre situation that arises when one fixates on spiders in the month of October. The story was originally published by the website Every Day Fiction, on Halloween Day.

One powerful characteristic of flash fiction is the power of inference. In one thousand words or fewer, the reader must be provided clues so that the ramifications of the storyline can be inferred. The words stop but the story continues in the imagination of the reader. I enjoyed using that writing technique in these stories, of providing a kicker. In a very real way, flash fiction is much like poetry in that every word is composed in a manner to provide a "more than usual meaning."

Tri Odd is available as an ebook for free at the following links. Feel free to read the stories, and hopefully you will be inspired to read more of my writing.

Tri Odd at Amazon

Tri Odd at Smashwords


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