HOW (NOT) TO WRITE A STORY, DAY 1

Think. Think. Think. C'mon, damn you! COME ON!!! I gotta write a story. Well, I guess I don't gotta, but I wanna. Real bad.

Let's see…

What's a story gotta have in it? Ah, there we go! Startin' with the basics. Always a good thing to do. Hmm…well…uh-huh…yeah. Yeah. Yeah!

First things first. I need a character. Or two. Or three. Yeah, three's good. Let me think, now. Wait for it. Wait for it!

Protagonist. Protagonist. Is there a protagonist in the house? Hmm. Needs a kickass name. How 'bout…Crazy Dan? Sounds purdy good, 'cept…he ain't crazy. Far as I know, anyway. It's kinda hard to tell, since he ain't been conceived yet.

Maybe I'll turn him into one of them…magical creature types. Yeah, a fantasy! An epic fantasy. That genre is the shit!

Okay, so I picked a genre. Still gotta work out them goddamn characters! Where was I? Let's see…oh yeah! Dan, who ain't so crazy after all. Maybe I'll call him Normal Dan. Jus' kiddin'. I ain't that retarded! Dan, Daniel, Dan the Man, Dan the Man Jenkins, Doctor Dan the Man Jenkins, Esquire…I know! I'll call him Steve.

Now, to begin:

"One day, Steve, the elf…" Naw, I'll make him a half-elf. Crossbreeds kick ass! "One day, Steve, the half-elf…" Uhh…he needs another half, don't he? Okay, how 'bout this: "One day, Steve, the half-elf, half-dragon was walking though the woods, minding his own business, when all of a sudden…something happened." Aww, fudge! Writer's block! Welp, so far so good, I think. So good, I'll jus' stare at the screen for a couple hours, basking in my glorious work. Mmm, glory-flavored. Okay, baskin' times over! I need to get serious, here.

Everybody knows that a good epic fantasy has got to be long, and I mean real long! You gotta feel like you been climbin' mountains and fightin' off hordes of evil thangs right alongside the heroes. You gotta be exhausted. So…how am I s'posed to drag it out like that? I ain't got no plot. Wait a minute, I got an idea! I'll use lots of fancy words describin' stuff! That should fill up a few hundred pages, at least. Well, here goes:

"The elves' palace stood hidden by trees and ferns and dancing shadows, tucked deep into a deep, deep glen; a lush, green place where the air tastes like mist, because it is mist, and the vines twist and curl along every beam, and the creatures that lurk in the undergrowth move stealthily and soundlessly, sneakily and quietly, furtively and hushedly…" Wait. Hushedly ain't a word! What was I thinkin'? "Furtively and inaudibly through the thick, living tangle, waiting and watching, watching and waiting, ready to leap out and snatch their prey at the slightest hint of a suggestion of an intimation of movement. Description, description. Et cetera, et cetera."

Ooh, boy! I get tired just writin' this shit! I feel right sorry for the poor saps who actually read this stuff. Anyhoo, 's time to fill out the character roles. We already got our protagonist, ol' Stevie. Now I gotta give him someone to fight. Y'know, a "Dark Lord". A force o' pure EVIL. But…I think I'll make it a Dark Lady instead. Female villains are red-hot smokin'! Mmm! She'll wear all black, of course. Everybody knows that black equals EVIL. (No racial comment intended.)

What to name her, what to name her… Somethin' gothy and mystical. Lilith? Naw, it's been done. But what if I spice it up a bit and call her…Lilith of the Thorns? Yeah! I think I'm on to somethin'!

So, the story's gotta end in some big, earth-shatterin' showdown between Steve and Lilith of the Thorns. That's a given. Where should the fightin' take place? Inside a cave? Naw, too cavy. On top of a volcano? Naw, too…volcano-ey. Oooh! How 'bout on a magic flying pirate ship in midair? That way I can incorporate pirates. Pirates are the new ninja, ya know.

Aww, shoot! I just realized the flyin' ship idea's been taken. Fuck you, Peter Pan! Uhh…umm…think, think, think. I've got it! They'll both face off in a wizard's duel in an old, spooky graveyard somewhere! Now that is completely original.

Okay, that's enough writin' for one day! I gotta get me some shut-eye. Maybe I'll think of somethin' in my dreams. I hear that's how some writers do it. Well, adios for now! Wish me luck!