Wednesday, June 8, 2016

The Interrupted Sentence with an Aside

I’m at the Starbucks and its raining outside. I’m using a very old laptop which I like because it has a huge screen and a lot of attitude. Its also prone to conking out.

I’ll be beginning with two elements and an idea. Its a form of writing practice that I do, the way a musician might practice his scales, except that this time I have an idea I’m interested in expanding all the way with. I may even have a writing partner for it.

First element; I choose a writing prompt from the book “A Writers Book of Days” by Judith Reeves. The prompt for June 6 is “You are standing on one side of a closed door”. The second element is a line from an out of print book on prose style called “Copy and Compose” by Winston Weathers. This is a much revered book which appears in PDF files around the Internet. It teaches a forgotten writing exercise that was once taught in public schools called “pastiche”.

The idea of pastiche is to take a well crafted sentence or paragraph from a classic work of literature or any piece of prose or poetry that knocks you on your ass - and hand copy it over and over until you feel that sound, that vibe and then try your own variation of it to get a feel for the nuances of language.

Looking at where I left off yesterday the sentence example for today is “Interrupted Sentence with an Aside”. The example is by F L Lucas from “Style” and goes “Even mathematical solutions (though here I speak with trembling) can have aesthetic beauty.”

So my challenge is to take those two elements and mix them together in a context. What context?

A while back a friend of mine left a voicemail on my phone. This friend thought the phone had been hung up but it wasn’t and the odd mumblings and giggles that followed during the live mike situation were pretty intriguing. There is something voyeuristic and interesting to experience people in the act of being themselves when they think no one is around. It has an erotic kind of intimacy. A kind of nakedness. It has been the undoing of presidential candidates.


I unwrap my pack of Biscoff cookies, take a swig of coffee.

Here goes nothing-

Standing outside the closed door of her half lidded eyes he had no clue what she was thinking. Was she dissolved in her last wave of pleasure (she claimed to have orgasmed, but she always said that) and he hadn’t felt that special vaginal hug that confirmed - or reassured - his male prowess. Or was she silently judging him?

After all this time, he thought, I don’t know her. Fucking doesn’t tell you anything, not like people think. How to change that?  Punch through that smug wall?

It was the best he’d come for a long time. This because this familiar woman under him, with her familiar breasts, familiar skin, and the familiar warm press of her scalding hot belly squeezed under his rough thrusts, his tensing and his harsh grunt of release (all of this so very, very familiar) was different this time because it was noonday and a surprise and not the last thing before bed, and her eyes were so much the eyes of a stranger across the bed, looking up with that languid gaze.

“Gotta talk - oh. Fuck,” he said as one last, thick little burst wriggled gorgeously up the length of his cock and spurted into the condom impaled deep into the slick raw of her. It was endless, his orgasm. “Bitch,” he heard himself mumble, sounding drunk. “Gotta talk while I still got my dick up in your cunt.” He had never talked this way before (and why not? he thought), and he enjoyed the wrinkle of her brows, in fear or maybe disgust, but he had her attention.

He realized, to his surprise, he hoped it might be fear. Could he make her fear?

She said nothing. Opened her eyes a little wider. No longer in her pleasure but waiting for something, something.

He leaned into her, pressing his still rigid cock as deep as he could make it go, letting himself hang in the moment of belly on belly, hair meshed with hair, keeping that swooning, fat, snug moment for himself. “Fuck,” he said again, as if he couldn’t

My cell phone on the little chair next to my book bag rings.


My son. “Yeah?”

“I just had my first car wreck.”

Car wreck??? Are you okay?”

“Yeah.  You know.  Pretty much.”

He tells me where he is. He needs a ride. I tell him I’m on the way. Suddenly my story, which seemed to be going so great guns a minute ago recedes into the background as Life in all its implacable indifference to my genius puts its hairy hand on my shoulder. All those words sound dumb to me.


I begin packing it all up. Its a good thing I’m not earning a living with this stuff . . . .


  1. "Life in all its implacable indifference to my genius puts its hairy hand on my shoulder."

    How true!

    But you'll get back to it. I know you will.

    And you've got the interruption with an aside down pat.

  2. Hi Lisabet!

    I know that reading this it sounds like I'm making up the end but actually its literally true. When I got to the last word "could" my phone rang and it was my son and he'd had a fender bender.

    This is another side of creative work which people don't think about, which is that for all our imagined glory, Life doesn't give a shit. Life doesn't care if Mr or Ms Wonderful has some bright idea, Life pushes you out of your chair to make you take care of stuff.

    I do want to work on that story with you. Let me send you something in the next couple days and get it going.


    1. I had no doubt the call from your son was real.

      But it fits in so well.

      I love Annabeth's comment about you being "meta". Maybe you should create a business card that says:

      C. Sanchez-Garcia

    2. "Meta-Worker" Is there a union for that?

  3. Ack! Yeah, I was just really sinking into the story when the phone call happened. It's an intriguing start.

    You are also so very meta here. :) I count at least two layers of interruptions with aside, if not three.

    1. Its funny, I hadn't realized that until you mentioned it. I had to go back and count them. I've learned to interrupt myself, (sort of ADD writing) much the way I think. Got to admit (as who can deny) I've got this interruption thing (who will interrupt my thoughts better than me?) with an aside down pretty good.


    2. laughing out loud at this response. :D

  4. Your voice always sounds so unique. Your characters let the reader eavesdrop on the voices in your head. And I, also, was really getting into the story and hope you can get back into the groove with it.

    Funny coincidence. One of our sons just had a fender-bender also, but he's married and lives in another state. He had to call because he was unnerved. It totaled his car. Second time he's done that in 8 years. First was black ice on the highway in a snow storm. This time it was the other driver's fault. Husband and I affirmed our undying love for him, and bemoaned the impossibility of giving him a reassuring hug from 2 states away. Texted him today and he's going to get his back/neck X-rayed, as we advised him to do, because he's still sore.

    Kids! They grow up and move out of your house, and you still can't stop worrying about them and wanting to protect them from every possible exigency, even though it's no more possible now than it was from the instant he left my body for independence.

    1. It really unnerves you when you love your car and its practically your second home and then you see it mangled and dead by the side of the road. Cars appear frequently in my dreams abd I'm still debating what they symbolize.

      You can't protect them from everything and we know contingency and even suffering if what builds soul. But still, its awful to see them suffer anything at all.


  5. Garce, if cars appear often in your dreams, you could give one a personality in your writing, as Stephen King did with Christine. Your unfinished story is brilliant, and your whole post sums up so much about a writer's life. We hate the interruptions, but they keep us rooted in present reality and connected with loved ones, which doesn't seem like a totally bad thing.


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