Tag Archives: short stories

Echoes of Heine Brothers

Today has been one of those grit your teeth days…but then again, not really.

Let me explain.

This morning, I slept in, which was great. When I got up and looked out the window, it was snowing. Louisville was experiencing a Saskatchewan Screamer, which is a cousin to the Alberta Clipper, I’m guessing, a fast moving storm system that moves in, hits hard, then speeds off to wreak havoc elsewhere.

I had my coffee and checked email, while sneaking glances out the window at the snow falling. Finally, I couldn’t take it anymore and got dressed, grabbed my phone and my Canon and headed over to EP Sawyer Park and the nature trail.

The snow was dying down and the sun coming out when I got there, which made for a beautiful walk in the woods. The ice in the trees looked like polished glass, and as the temperature warmed, clumps of melting snow fell from the trees.

I did the normal route, and headed down to the creek, where I went from stills to video and back again, trying to get cool shots. By the time I got to where the trail turns away from the creek and heads up to the big open area by the old graveyard, the sky had turned an ominous pewter color.

By the time I made it to the graveyard, the snow had returned, accompanied by a stiff wind that blew in gusts. It was absolutely beautiful to be out there.

The snow came down so hard that I had to put my Canon under my coat to keep it dry. My iPhone was getting pretty wet too, so I slid it in and out of my coat pocket to dry it off. It was while it was in my pocket that big doe and I crossed paths. My hand was in my pocket, and my mind went from “Be still!” to “Get your camera out, you fool!” By the time I slipped my phone from my pocket, she’d sprung off to the woods to my right and disappeared.

I continued on with my phone at the ready, hoping to spot more of the deer that were thick in the woods there, but I didn’t see another.

By the time I got to the end of the fence where the graveyard ends, the gray skies were giving way to sun and fast-moving clouds.


My plan was to have the video edited and ready to go today, but my Mac is stuffed full of video clips and I’ve been learning about how to manage all this stuff all day long. The video will have to wait. Hopefully tomorrow.

I didn’t want to just post this lame excuse of why I have nothing creative to post today, so I found an old hard drive that has some old stories on it. I posted one that means a lot to me.

The Barista is a story I wrote back in 2006 when I was spending a lot of time hanging out at Heine Brothers, a local coffee shop. I’d go there every morning before work and write for 60-90 minutes, depending on how early I could drag myself out of bed.

The story is what it is, but it has a soft spot in my heart because of what it almost became.

One day, I ran into my friend William after church. William is a filmmaker, and we talked about his latest projects. As the conversation wound down, he asked me if I had any short stories that would be good to develop together into a movie. I’d just finished The Barista, and he asked me to send it to him.

He liked the story, and asked me to turn it into a script, which led to a frantic crash-course in script writing. A couple weeks later, I had a script for a short film.

William read through the script and after thinking it through, asked if I thought the story could be developed into a feature-length script. Not wanting to miss out on an opportunity to have something of mine filmed, I said sure.

The story wasn’t worthy of a feature, I don’t guess, but I loved the process of working through the story and reinterpreting it. I finished the script, which I may post sometime, and we started the pre-production process.

To make a long story short, the project never got finished. Life intervened, and we had to move on to more pressing matters.

Anyway. Here’s the link to The Barista. I hope you enjoy it.

A busy weekend

This weekend has been a weird one of casting off the holidays and setting the stage for getting back to normal.

For starters, our oldest daughter, Hadley, went back to college on Saturday. It was a bittersweet moment, seeing her go. She caught a ride back to school with a friend, so we didn’t have to drive the hour-or-so to get her there, which saved us money but deprived us of time spent hanging out and talking

I’m so proud of Hadley and how well she’s doing in school. Over the break she hustled some work and earned more money than we could have expected.

The older she gets, the more we love hanging out with her and spending time being with her. Such a great kid. I can’t wait to introduce her to backpacking in the spring.

Next, we took down all the Christmas decorations, the tree, the outdoor lights and anything else having to do with Christmas. That’s always the true watershed that separates the old year from the new. Now, in my mind, it’s truly 2016.

Oh, and it’s freezing-ass cold, too. We got our first measurable snow of the year, an inch or two that was nice for today, but will get old really fast.

With all that activity, along with the celebration of birthdays and the surprise visits by dear friends, it was hard to find time to make things this weekend. When I did get time the think creatively, I spent it focused on the blog and getting the short stories page formatted and looking half-way decent.

For now, I’m happy with it, though it underscores the limitations of the twenty fourteen theme that I’m using. But that’s okay. This blog isn’t about being precious, but about being functional and utilitarian, and I think I’ve figured out how to make it work for the stories.

I’ve posted a second story, He was so beautiful and young. I wrote it for a short-story competition that it didn’t win. I can’t say too much about it without giving away a kind of gimmick, so I’ll just say that it’s inspired by true events. I hope you enjoy it.

All this looking at old stories has me thinking that I need to get busy on a new one. We’ll see what happens….

Posting short stories

I’ve been going back and forth whether to post short stories on this blog, and finally decided to go for it.

The tension was completely fear-based and had to do with the risk of being vulnerable and the stories sucking and all that crap.

I’m going to start sifting through old stories and will post the ones that seem finished, or finished enough. The plan is also to write new ones. At some point.

So. If you’re interested, you can click the link at the top of the page to go to the landing page for the stories, or click here and you’ll be able to see what’s up on the site.

The first one that’s up is something that was published in Storychord and edited by my friend Leesa Cross-Smith. It was written under a pseudonym, so don’t be thrown by the byline. I hope you enjoy it.