Hardware: Such an inspired title. That was the placename that held the file while i figured if i wanted to do something with it.

I’d finished The endless stars, Under the stars, and gotten the first one out. I tried reading some things, but none of them were particularly interesting.

This is not becoming a habit – looking back and riffing – but Busy Bee and Cost Plus (which does, in fact, have a suit of armor in the cellar) were married in thought when i began writing. Busy Bee also had a knife display that i found tantalizing as a child – secured in a glass case. I wrote the first chapter, just kind of fiddling, and then wrote the second, but not like it is. Adelaide, the cop, and dropping off the kids, but the questioning and reflecting back didn’t come until later.

Later, because after the two were written – writing ended.

Even as i tried to move forward with a second chapter, this story always felt like a short one. As i was writing, i had no idea where it would go, and i didn’t think it’d make ten-thousand: You never know, but some feel like they have bigger ideas to be explored, and this one never did.

I started writing at the beginning of January, and then two chapters sat for a few weeks. A few weeks of rumination. I feel like the first chapter’s interesting, but i didn’t know who was in it when i first wrote, and as i thought, the idea there was a relationship moved the story forward.

It was one of those where that idea led to another, and the whole scenario blossomed. How does an idea of the relationship lead to the rest of the story? No idea. But I sat thinking about those two chapters and from that came everything that happened. Literally, in a matter of minutes: Brief notes were sketched, such as – WV, allegiance, freaky mom, etc. Such cued thoughts down the road imagined. At the time i sketched them out i’d written about fifteen-hundred words and it felt – as Doelly would have said – it wouldn’t stretch much past ten times that.

Doelly, who was a fictional character – along with partner, Trompain – created to comment about writing on the old blog. Since shut down, but possibly an outlet that needs to be resurrected, since such topics used to find outlet there.

Anyhow, the description of this thing’s terrible – hardware store, old man, things happen. In the vein of the magical, fantastical bents i seem to like playing with, with morally equivocal characters:

The hardware store stood on the corner of the central square, familiar to everyone and rarely used: Little had been added to the shelves in decades. However, there was a display case that had a draw, and the curio behind it supplied those interested in hunting or protection. None of that was how the old man made had made a living, but that was kept out of sight and underground. One mistake, and all of that started changing.

That’s terrible. It’s crying for the hook, but i flatlined. I even tried throwing words in an ai writer, but the results were hilariously awful. Literally, Prek-level reinterpretation. I throw in the towel.