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6/16/2005

Glory Of The Low Streets


The night was wet. The rising waters in the drainage outlet forced us to find perches higher and higher along its irregular interior, finishing the evening on a narrow ledge overlooking the rushing brown waters below littered with twigs and leaves. A weak, grey light bloomed in the east.

Come morning we elected to wait out the rain, and when the rain hadn't stopped by noon we elected to brave it. It was a torrential downpour, the forest misty with thick vapour and a constant, clamouring slapping of drops against leaves sounded on all sides. We trudged through the mud, trying to stick to the high ground as Pish directed us along paths he knew well down out of the hills and toward the delta valley where the grand city of Thaumas lay.

Thaumas was a wonder.

As we crested a hill I opened my mouth to say something about the surprisingly geometric paths of the birds up ahead until the advancing march of perspective revealed my mistake in scale. "Are those cars?" I asked in wonder.

"Yup," said Pish.

A great valley was spread out beneath us, bisected by a wide river. The ground of this valley seemed at first to be composed of some kind of strangely rectilinear lichen, shimmering behind veils of grey rain. But in fact they were buildings, hundreds of thousands of buildings, stretching to the opposite hills. The roofs of the buildings were planted with trees, and the avenues between them were planted with grass. It became apparent as I looked on that the true ground was hidden, and the height of the buildings was impossible to discern. The air above the city churned with lines of gnat-like cars, their humming lost to the distance and the weather...

Simon of Space - a science-fiction novel by Cheeseburger Brown
Dear folks,

It has at last come to be: the online version of this science-fiction novel has been taken offline in order to make room for the hard-cover printed edition from Ephemera Bound Publishing, on sale in stores and online beginning Valentine's Day, 2008.

I regret any disappointment. I kept the online version available as long as I could. Please do be sure to check out the new edition! See Cheeseburger Brown.com for more information and updates.

Love,
Cheeseburger Brown

P.S. You can read more of my free tales via my weblog or in the complete story achives.

23 Comments:

Blogger Jim decreed...

I am anxious to see you pull this off: to generate a story and prose in a steady stream, basically one shot, without chance to go back and rewrite or adjust the storyline as the plot evolves is a tremendous limitation.

I wonder, how much of the plot and story is already developed (in your head? Have you written an outline of the story, and are just filling in the details, or are you plotting as you write?

Also, if I may ask... are you taking this project "seriously", as in, thinking about mainstream publishing somewhere down the line?

Thu Jun 16, 01:28:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Cheeseburger Brown decreed...

Dear Jim,

I like limitations. They inspire creative solutions.

This is a serious project in the sense that I take storytelling very seriously, and it is my serious concern to leave those who come along for the ride satisfied, surprised and moved when all is said and done.

However, this is my "practise novel." My "actual novel" -- that is, the one destined for traditional publication -- will be developed out of what I learn from this experience. I'm currently working on a proposal for a non-fiction title, which I hope will open up opportunities for me when the manuscript is ready to be seen.

As far as the storyline goes: the plot is coming together slowly. As I issue each post and re-read it, I think about what will happen next and how it will connect to the other pieces of unfinished story-arc I've been toying with in my head. However, I am discovering new things all the time -- just not five minutes ago I figured out a critical thing about a pivotal character that interlocks perfectly with other things I was planning, and it just sort of fell into my lap out of my imagination. You never know what'll pop out when you pull the lever, I reckon.

So, in short, as of today I have the broad story worked out roughly. But it is subject to change as inspiration or mechanical problems dictate.

My notes consist only of specific lines of dialogue or prose that I think are sweet, such as the very last line of story which I wrote down just minutes ago. (Whether or not it ends up as the last line of the story is not certain, of course, but it seems likely to me -- I like it.)

Love,

CheeseburgerBrown

Thu Jun 16, 01:42:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Christien Lomax decreed...

OMG I love this story already, and I'm glad you are free-balling it (per se), means that reader input and such might be taken into consideration (as you previously mentioned). Again, I wait impatiently for the next post.

Found some errors, they might have been fixed already by the time i post this:
* "they were building" - needs an 's'.
* "They didn't mention this behavior in the documentary" - miss spelling? (behaviour)
* "With Jeremiah's help we all clambored down" - clambered?
* "Jeremiah walk calmly up behind the tempermental fellow" - temperamental?

You seem the sort to accept corrections (even if they are wrong) and ideas.

Read you soon.

/tcw

Thu Jun 16, 02:13:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anne Arkham decreed...

I still have no idea how you do it. It take me an hour just to squeeze out one paragraph.

Thu Jun 16, 02:23:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Johnny Butane decreed...

Love the story best of luck with this.

Thu Jun 16, 02:30:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Cheeseburger Brown decreed...

Dear Anne,

But surely you don't speak that slowly, do you?

If you can tell a story, you can write a story. If what you type is coming out substantially different than the way you would say it aloud, there may be a monkey in your works that's throttling your output unnecessarily.

Lookame -- doling out advice like I know what I'm talking about! (I don't.)

All's I'm saying is this: the best thing I've ever done to improve my output it telling stories aloud to my daughter. With a live audience you are obliged to stay on your toes. The discipline carries over to creative typing very well.

On the other hand, who am I to reject a beautiful paragraph that may have taken years to perfect?

Love,

CheeseburgerBrown

Thu Jun 16, 03:06:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Niels decreed...

1, I have to agree on squeezing out one paragraph... how do you do it. I don't have kids, so that might be it, though.

2, Si--Hellig's naive behaviour had me in quite the giggle on this episode.
He also had a point (a feat that children his age tend to have):
What do you do when you have no car?
Obviously there's a great difference in wealth in this city; light for the rich, shadows for the poor.
Fascinating.

Thu Jun 16, 03:16:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Lilaena decreed...

As someone familiar with 'freewheeling' a story on the go with no chance to edit out mistakes or clean up the story - I think you're doing a fantastic job.

(I text base RP at sw-fans.net, and yes, it's just a geeky as it sounds.) Usually we start out with an idea for a story, figure out where we want to go, and just let whatever happens in the middle happen. Once you get comfortable with a character, and can imagine situations to place them into, the character will basically write your story for you.

You just have to be a fast typist to keep up. ;o)

Love the newest installment, and the colorful language is... colorful. :oD

Thu Jun 16, 03:38:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Skaught decreed...

I may be forced to start muttering "coitus" under my breath instead of... what I normally mutter.

What can I say? I'm a funny anus.

Thu Jun 16, 04:49:00 PM EDT  
Blogger jennifer decreed...

Such a great story. Such a great writing style. You're inspiring me to get back into something I haven't done since college...prose...which seems such a shame since I used to be somewhat good at it. Your feed has already found a place on my yahoo.

Thu Jun 16, 05:04:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Nasixi decreed...

I only discoverd this new story yesterday. Indeed, it is most inspiring. I await the next installment with much anticipation...

Thu Jun 16, 06:04:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

Best Episode so far, cheeseburgerbrown. Nice sense of adventure and humour that's missing in so many Scifi book these days. Too many scifi authors trying to be serious nowadays.

Orick

ps. don't want to sound too picky but I thought you could have stretched the last epsiode of the escape a bit longer. Maybe make it two episodes and end the first one with more of a cliffhanger.

Thu Jun 16, 06:10:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous ScottieVegas decreed...

Open Letter to Mr. Burger (Sans Cheese though I LOVE it so):
I hope you weren't offended by my Hollywood comment. Yes, you did go there (kicking the Dad out of the picture... For now... :) But I am still GREATLY enjoying the storyline.
I'm a Geek, so this is truly enjoyable. I'm sharing the link with my friends, which will hopefully continue to drive up viewers.
I do keep waiting for a bit more reality. Now, where do we find reality in a fictional world based many years in the future?
How about someone, maybe the hooker (hello Bladerunner :) who won't use the man and show him how much money he truly has.
Heck with the stained mattress, how about the DREAM bed at the Westin? Of course you do run into little issues by drawing attention to yourself. But it is possible to stay anonymous in a luxury hotel, just as it's likely he'll draw attention in a fleabag hotel by having money and being loose with his money.
At least at a luxury hotel he'll be deemed "eccentric" rather then stupid. Maybe I just fear for poor Simon (which really shows the good job you're doing building the character.) I don't want to see him beaten or hurt. Now, he's already beat up a cop, so maybe he's actually got the John Cusack assasin skills stuck in his brain. That'd be pretty sweet.
I truly hope I don't offend with my comments and opinion. I really enjoy this story and will continue to read it as close to daily as possible.

Thank you for writing Mr. Brown!

SV

Thu Jun 16, 06:20:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous noodlebucket decreed...

This last episode really stepped it up a lot. Congrats!

Have you ever read Gormenghast?

Thu Jun 16, 09:12:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Dave decreed...

This just keeps getting better and better.

Quite honestly, you should do a work of fiction, just like this.

I wish I had your talent.

Fri Jun 17, 07:35:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

Two thumbs up.

This needs to get some bigger advertising!

Fri Jun 17, 11:57:00 AM EDT  
Blogger razorsmile decreed...

... so maybe he's actually got the John Cusack assasin skills stuck in his brain. That'd be pretty sweet.

Too obvious, too overdone. Dilute not thy originality.

Fri Jun 17, 12:04:00 PM EDT  
Blogger please dont delete me im elmo decreed...

Yuh huss necessary foh the sashe hof the Litto Mastuh

i have no idea what this guy is saying half the time then agian there could be a mavise stamped of wild eleaphats and i wouldnt notice

(actully i probly would b/c i live in the city)

Fri Jun 17, 12:49:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Niels decreed...

How about... somebody stole Simon's brain while he was warped? And burned onto one of those brain-hardcopy crystals? That would certainly explain the character Crushed Head Faeda (as my experience with sci-fi is that the important elements hide in the first half of the story). Apart from the fact that it's an original character to write about, of course.

Fri Jun 17, 04:09:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Dunstan decreed...

You brain work smart.

Big think. Many good.

Fri Jun 17, 04:15:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Ross decreed...

I love this. You have a wonderful style and an equally wonderful imagination. Keep up the great work!

Sat Jun 18, 12:27:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous SithSnoopy decreed...

You are going to be an awesome author some day.

I will be first in line to purchase any fiction that
you write.

If I may ask, what is the non-fiction subject you
intend to write about?

Sun Jun 19, 03:46:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Sheik Yerbouti decreed...

CBB,

"My notes consist only of specific lines of dialogue or prose that I think are sweet, such as the very last line of story which I wrote down just minutes ago. (Whether or not it ends up as the last line of the story is not certain, of course, but it seems likely to me -- I like it.)"

...so did it turn out to be the last line? Because the actual one seems to fit this description quite nicely...

It's nice to go back and re-read this a year later; what a great piece of work.

Mon Sep 18, 02:59:00 PM EDT  

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