Dating myself a bit, but the first time I heard Bauhaus’ live performance of Bela Lugosi’s Dead I was, I think, 14. Part-time job, cleaning the office of one of my mom’s friends at around 7:30 at night. Listening to that on my walkman. Freaked me out something fierce.
So, no, I’m not dead. Haven’t given up on writing. It’s just this episode has taken me far longer than I wanted it to. Life got in the way. Vacation. Moving house. Broken bones. Day job. All that kind of stuff.
Oh, and the fact that I’m up to 155 pages for this episode. Still not done. Although I do see a light at the end of the tunnel. And no, I’m not making any train references.
I am really trying hard to finish this up before Christmas. I don’t want to start the New Year with this episode unfinished. Don’t want you guys to have to wait any longer than absolutely necessary. Once that gets a little closer to being wrapped up, I’m going to make a decision on what to write next. For that, I may ask for some input from you fine folks. But we’ll explore that a bit more once this last episode gets wrapped up.
One thing I have decided to do is reduce the amount of profanity in my writing. Notice I said reduce, not remove. Had some conversations with a few friends and a writer or two and basically I realized I use far too much. I have trimmed it down. Have used a half-spoken or cut-off version of curse words, as you’ll see in a moment. I’ve also decided to, once I finish Episode 5, go back and edit the previous episodes. Cut back on the profanity and leave it in only when I feel it is necessary to the story. I counted and there are over 20 instances of the F-word in Episode 1. That’s an average of at least one instance every other page. Too many. I’m not excising them completely. They will still be there. My books will still likely be for mature audiences. Will still carry the warning in the front of the book. But I don’t want to use those as a crutch. I’m not Tarantino. I admire his films, but I’m not him and my writing shouldn’t mimic his level of profanity.
And, as a teaser, I’ve decided to put out an excerpt from Episode 5 like I did with Episode 3. So, read on, dear reader. And if you want to keep up with me, I’ve been most active on Twitter these days. Not to say I’m really active. But that’s likely the easiest place to keep track if I’m still kicking or not. There should be a link on the upper right of this webpage that will take you to my Twitter feed/page/tweet thing. Thank you, and enjoy…
“Bannister’s going to kill you. You know that, don’t you Agent?” Duke said.
“We’ll see. Any last words, Duke? Some stupid movie line you think is relevant?” Guy asked. Stepped back two full steps. Slowly.
Duke wracked his brain. Trying to get a message to Theo in case he was listening. “Yeah, I do. Han shot first.”
“What?” Guy said, confusion on his face.
“You heard me you traitorous coward. Han shot first.”
Guy shook his head. “Whatever. I never understood you and your stupid team.”
Duke smiled. “That is why you fail.”
“Come on, motherfu-” Duke yelled as Kowalski yelled out louder, “He’s got a gun!” Pulled his Glock 23 from his Miami Vice inspired shoulder holster and fired two shots into Duke’s chest. The crowds in the Hollywood and Highland shopping center screamed and ran, terrified that the worst of L.A. had come to life. Blood exploded outward from Duke’s chest as Kowalski’s shots hit their mark. Duke looked surprised. Looked down at his chest as he fell backwards. The blood seeped through his clothes and onto the concrete around him.
Sirens sounded in the distance. Getting closer.