A little over a week ago, I performed my first Choose Your Own Adventure (CYOA) Florida Man story live at Loose Lips. I got the idea from B.J. Best based on his interactive fiction class (great academic label for CYOA stories) after he mentioned the tool that his class is using called Twine, an open-source tool for telling non-linear interactive stories.
When I write fiction, I don’t plan at all. I chase a core idea and see what happens as I write. This is the anthesis of how I approach my day job as an instructional designer/technical writer. I plan. I outline or storyboard. Only after I storyboard do I build what I want to build in the applicable tool. I realized that before I could start using Twine, I needed to have a loose idea where I wanted to begin.
CYOA beginning outline while heading to Ft. Lauderdale on a Megabus.
After I had my initial outline, I was able to sit down and write the story in Twine. The interface takes a little bit getting used (including how to insert links). Once you figure it out, it gets easier.
B.J. also mentioned a free hosting resource that his class is using to host their interactive fiction called Neocities. Twine exports your story as an html file. All you have to do is drag and drop the html to a hosting site. It’s really easy.
I wanted to perform this live but I knew of the technical limitations. I didn’t want the audience to stare at a screen as I read the words to them as they appear on the screen (that’s a presentation no-no). I didn’t figure it out until the night before the reading: choices and responses printed on double sided paper.
What would you choose?
I picked someone from the audience to be the chooser and the performance went off very well.
If you want to check out the web version of my CYOA story, head on over to here to Due Process.
I have some new flash fiction up in the following places:
- Central American Literary Review published my story “Cerulean” in English and translated it into Spanish. This is the second work of mine to be translated into another language (my e-chapbook A Patchwork of Rooms Furnished by Mistakes was the first). You can read the story here.
- I have a 100-word story over in Short Tale, which you can read over here.
- Maudlin House published my flash fiction story “Shadowboxer”. You can read that over here.
I have some new flash fiction over at CHEAP POP that you should check out over here.
I read earlier in August as part of There Will Be Fan Fiction 2: The Revenge. You can check out the entire reading here.
Here’s are my upcoming readings for September.
- I’m reading with Lenore Myka at the Sunday Salon South Florida reading series on Sunday, September 4. This will be the first time that I’ve read in Ft. Lauderdale since going down there to support my first collection of poetry. More details about the event are here.
- On Tuesday, September 6, I’m reading at Loose Lips, one of my favorite local reading series. You can check out more details here.
- I’m doing two shows through my reading series, There Will Be Words. One is my regular reading series on September 13. The other show is my audience applause judged poetry slam There Will Be Verse on September 15. Check out the details below:
I had a great conversation with John King at The Drunken Odyssey about Jesus Christ, Boy Detective. You can check that out in full over here.
Cahoodaloodaling included my e-chapbook Neil in their latest issue that reviews e-chapbooks that have come out over the last year or so. Check out all of these excellent free reads and reviews over here.
Here’s my upcoming appearances for August:
- August 4 – I’m hosting Spilled Milk Literary Open Mic. More details can be found over here.
- August 9 – I’m one of the readers at There Will Be Fan Fiction II: The Revenge. More details can be found over here.
- August 16 – I’m the featured reader at Wordier Than Thou Storytelling & Prose Open Mic at Studio@620 in St. Pete. Fun fact: my St. Pete book release for my first collection of poetry was also held at Studio@620. It’s a lovely space to read at and I’m excited to be reading from Jesus Christ, Boy Detective. More details about this show can be found here.
- August 18 – I’m one of the readers at the First Draft Reading Series in Tampa. The event page hasn’t been posted for this reading yet, but you can like their page on Facebook over here.
My book, The Adventures of Jesus Christ, Boy Detective officially came out on July 15. I’m really proud of how this turned out. I never thought that I would write a novel and in a way, I accidently did. If you haven’t gotten a copy yet, you can go here for the available ways to get yours. (And if you’ve gotten a copy, please add it/rate it on Goodreads and/or Amazon).
This past Thursday, I was on Functionally Literate Radio, an extension of the fantastic Functionally Literate reading series run by Burrow Press. We had a really good conversation about Jesus Christ, Boy Detective and my personal literary history. You can listen to that entire conversation here.
Book Riot named Jesus Christ, Boy Detective as one of the eight books you should read in July, which is rad (and should be another reason why you should get a copy, if you haven’t).
My book release in Orlando is on July 26. Bookmark It will be selling copies of it and the show itself should be wonderful. More details about the event can be found here. Hope to see you there.
July is going to be a really busy month, so let’s get right down to it.
Artborne Magazine was kind enough to interview me about Orlando’s literary history and about The Adventures of Jesus Christ, Boy Detective. You can check out the interview here.
You have until July 6 to enter a Goodreads giveaway to win a free copy of Jesus Christ, Boy Detective. Click here to enter it. You can also pre-order a copy here if you don’t get picked for a free copy or if you just want to order a copy.
On July 9, I am facilitating a webinar on what poetry has taught me about writing flash fiction through the Florida Writers Association. You can read about how I discovered flash fiction over here. If you are interested in attending the webinar, click here (It’s $15 for non-FWA members, $10 for FWA members). I’m really excited that I get to facilitate this webinar and have some fun surprises in store.
On July 12, I am hosting Clash of the Word Titans III. This is an event I invented that pits four poets against four prose writers in a head-to-head elimination slam until only one team is left standing. This has been a really great show the last two times and I don’t expect anything different this go around. More information about the event is here.
On July 15, I’m reading at Culture Pop: Untold Stories. Click here for more information about the event.
On July 26, I’m holding my release party for Jesus Christ, Boy Detective but not in the traditional way of author reads his/her/their work and hopes people buy it. I’ve curated some kick ass readers for a special event called A Religious Experience. Readers will read work regarding religion and I’m looking forward to seeing what they have come up with. You can check out more details about the event here.
I have some dates in August that I’ll share a bit later.
I read some excerpts of my novella-in-flash for Rocky Mountain Revival. You can listen to the entire episode here (I come in around 9:00).
I wrote a response to the Pulse shootings, which you can read over at Drunk In A Midnight Choir. I encourage you to send donations to the Zebra Coalition.
I have a story called “This Is Not My Beautiful Life” over at HYPERTEXT. I wrote this after a conversation I had with a couple of folks I know. I have always believed that the best story ideas are the ones you stumble on to.
Ben Tanzer said some really nice things about Sam Slaughter‘s When You Cross That Line, a chapbook that I published through my reading series There Will Be Words. You can still order what copies we have left here.
Also, the e-book versions of The Adventures of Jesus Christ, Boy Detective are now available for pre-sale. You can pick which version to pre-order by going here.
An excerpt of my novella-in-flash is up over at 200 CCs. Click here to check it out.
I received my author copies of my Lucky Bastard Press chapbook, No More Stories About The Moon. They are so tiny and lovely.
If you pre-ordered this, you are going to receive your copies for free. If you have not ordered this and would like a signed author copy, you can send me $10 through this link and I’ll mail a copy over to you. If you have a copy or are interested in the chapbook, please add it and/or rate it on Goodreads here. I’ll be doing a reading from it and some other flash fiction stories on June 29 at Austin’s Film & Coffee in the Winter Park, FL area. Click here to get more details.
I’m also pleased to announce that I finished my final round of proofreading edits on The Adventures of Jesus Christ, Boy Detective and have sent them to the publisher. You have time to pre-order your copy here.
My story, “Kyle”, was selected as part of Wigleaf‘s top 50 list of (very) short fictions for 2016. Click here to check out all of the excellent stories that were selected. Thanks to matchbook for publishing the story and to the judges. This honor means a lot.
Heather Press was kind enough to publish “How To Burn A Bridge Job Aid”. This is part of my job aid project where I use the principles of Information Mapping to create job aids on abstract concepts. You can check it out here.
This Zine Will Change Your Life published an excerpt of my novella-in-flash, which you can check out here.