Shattered Glass: Chapter 1: Birthday Surprises
"Come on, Aliya! Blow out the candles! Just because you're seventeen now, doesn't mean you cannot have fun!" James' voice broke through my reverie, and I attempted a smile, for my guests' sakes. Puckering my lips, I held a thought in my head as I blew out the candles: please let this year be a normal one.
Everyone cheered when the last candle was out, and gathered around the picnic table for the slices my mother was handing out. I was grateful that she had worn clothes that were at least remotely common; as a fashion empress, she usually dressed in something so outrageous, it was stupid. But today, for my sake, she was dressed in a normal pantsuit.
My mother's friends all gathered around me to congratulate me on another year, but time seemed to speed up. I didn't particularly like crowds, and this was the most people that had shown up to my birthday parties in years. I mumbled half hearted thank yous to everyone who came to shake my hand, but sighed internally when the line was finishe
how to become a writerhave parents that separatehow to become a writer1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
when you’re in high school;
a father filled with unused anger
and a mother too busy to care.
pretend it doesn’t hurt.
let your friends treat you
everything is your fault.
listen to their problems with a fake smile
all the while crying out because
everything hurts and no one can see.
press a knife to your skin,
but be too cowardly to
draw your own blood.
fall in love with people
who could never notice you,
just. not. good.
chew on the multicolored
strands of your hair.
(you can’t stop running
from who you really are.)
carry around a notebook
and scrawl eve
Passive Voice vs Active VoiceHello everyone!Passive Voice vs Active Voice1 year ago in Literature Features More Like This
You've probably already read some of this week's wonderful journals on audience and beginning a story, and you're also probably wondering what exciting topic I've brought for you today. I suppose I'll tell you instead of keeping you in the dark.
Passive Voice vs Active Voice
I can see you're all excited.
To begin this article, I'll start by defining exactly what passive and active voice are.
With active voice, the agent (the person or thing carrying out the action) is the subject:
Harry ate six shrimp at dinner.
John opened the door.
Sue changed the flat tire.
There are two different types of passive voice constructions. In
Heat AdvisoryWe are an air-mass thunderstorm at the heightHeat Advisory8 months ago in Free Verse More Like This
of an Indian summer -- a cloudburst colliding
into a cyclone, raising the temperature of any
who wander through our sweaty inversion.
I soar above the earth buoyed on your thermals,
straight into a clap of thunder conceived by
lightning fever. A roiling heatwave travels
across our connection, evaporating the atmosphere
surrounding the eye of our storm. Your humid
breath wisps over the thermodynamics of my skin,
pushing cumulonimbus up the drought in my spine.
Muggy kisses trail down my body like volcanic ash,
a haze blurring the lines between our hurricanes.
And as the barometer spikes, my heartbeat quickens;
I am sucked into the vortex of your tropical storm.
the failed escape artistshe is a snowflake-skinned sighthe failed escape artist1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
floating on the winds of Eurus,
playing tic-tac-toe on her skin.
she always comes out the loser
standing on the road between
two worlds, she wonders when
she started to read the map wrong,
because this isn’t the
second star from the right.
she can burn the pictures,
but she can’t burn her memories.
and damn it,
her wanderlust is trying to
pull her up, up, and away
but the desolation is keeping
its slimy tentacle wrapped
around her ankle and
moonsongthe crescent moons bitten into my palmsmoonsong2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
break apart the hard worn lines written
there. a fortune teller told me
it was just a matter of time before my
universe crashed in on itself
and my stars ripped themselves apart.
your gray-sky-eyes swallowed me whole
and i fell down, down, down
while your piano key fingers played
my melody one last time.
siren's abyssyour metallic voice drips off your tongue,siren's abyss2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
acid burning through my paper skin.
a siren song drifts though my mind;
i am a ship crafted from the daily news
being pulled in by your gravity,
sinking your raven colored abyss-eyes
and crashing into your rocky shores.
lost memories between the sofa cushionsi found the lost boys under the sink again,lost memories between the sofa cushions1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
their eyes boring as dark as a stygian night.
black ink tallies were scrawled on their arms --
an imaginary clock ticking life away in place
of the years they weren’t growing.
they reach their hands out to me,
beckoning, whispering the mantra
“be our mother again, again, again...”
but it was your words that echoed in my mind:
even pixie dust isn’t strong enough
to help me fly anymore.
the stained masqueradei have a red-line-rash from scratching too much;the stained masquerade1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
you always rubbed me the wrong way, but i guess
that's what i liked about you, wasn't it?
you could go on for days about how girls
shouldn't wear powder foundation
while you dabbed it on your own nose.
i hated the way your rain boots would squeak
after you jumped into a puddle of mud.
you never cared about "intended use," and
i guess that's why you liked me. you could use
me any way you wanted and i just wouldn't care.
the ballroom inside your mind is cracking, though,
because i took off my mask when i wasn't supposed to.
it's not time to play make believe any more:
"you need to grow up, earn your own bread and butter."
but you couldn't take the reality of the world
so you hid inside your mind and used me as your puppet.
i'm leaving marks on my arm again, as i lie on your bed
without pajamas, because if i turn up
dead i want the world to know what happened to me.
i want them to know that a girl acting like a train
crashed into my life an
Contact LightThere is a shiver along my circuitry when he comes in to check on me. I hear my gears whirr faster, but only for a moment, before my system re-adjusts their speed. I watch him from the corner of my eye, the task before me boring, monotonous, while he is exciting, lively. Lively. I run the word through my processor, its meaning sparking along my wires, slithering between my circuit board. He stops in front of me, glasses falling against the bridge of his nose.Contact Light3 months ago in Short Stories More Like This
He scribbles something on the clipboard he is holding and I watch as the ligaments and muscles flex in his arm. I rotate my vision down to my own arms, similar in design, but slimmer, more delicate. My shiny copper exterior glints, but I can see the spider web of veins on his skin. They pulse with vitality and intensity.
I remind myself that I only have circuits, wires, gears, metals. He looks into my line of vision, eyes blinking as he pushes his glasses up.
"C9, how are you functioning today?"
I run a systems diagnostic, careful
a sliver of the galaxyto the star girl on the edge of my tongue:a sliver of the galaxy1 year ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
your hair dye is fading; you are a patch work
quilt comprised of sleepless nights and
the world around you romanticizes
the sadness that fills you like a broken well,
but you know they’re wrong --
having a darkness that threatens
to overwhelm you every single moment
isn’t glamorous at all.
you’ve started to trace your skin
with a knife again, itching to press
a little harder, to draw on your body
the only way you know how.
but you won’t.
because that will mean
that you’re just as far gone
as they think you are.
and there’s still a sliver inside of you
that doesn’t want to let go.
--the girl on the other side of your mirror
a super nova's roaryour breathing comes heavya super nova's roar2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
as you whisper in my ear:
"veni, vidi, vici,
your fingers tangle themselves
into my mane, sending
trapped stars careening into
the depths of the universe.
your mouth meets mine.
we explode into dark matter
as i caress your butterfly skin,
my unsheathed claws gliding down
your rope-tied spine.
constellations dance across my body
and super novae bloom in the cracks
beyond time where lips and skin meet.
we roar at the night sky
as we rise from the lapping waves.
omnis vir tigris,
but we are lions, ascending
to take our place among the stars.
Death's EmbraceDeath decided he loved me too much,Death's Embrace1 year ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
and called my name, reaching
out to take me with him.
My hand slipped out of yours
as I stretched for his embrace,
cool and soft to my touch.
I don’t regret my decision.
He loves me more than you ever did.
To Us- Synesthesiai.To Us- Synesthesia3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
excites a burst
of color; an
tastes of mangoes;
caressing my senses.
your flavor is
all become a
"T" is crabby
and "I" worries.
"J" is strong
each number becomes
its own plane
all the numbers
becoming an army
of curvy rows,
a perfect pattern.
each and every one
a different hue,
a different shade,
untitledThat guy thinks he's heartless;untitled1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
I watch him as he buys coffee
and gives it to everybody he passes
on the street who looks sad, and
his lips curl into a smile because
he made a joke that gave someone a laugh.
He holds his mother's hand on top
of hospital sheets, pressing the button
to pump morphine into her system
before he signals a nurse. Tears cascade
down his face when he watches
his mother take her last breath.
And his lips curl into a sneer as he walks
past a cloud of lung choking smoke,
thinking of the fume filled air
his mother suffocated herself in.
He thinks he's heartless, but
his heart is bigger than anyone's.
PE Prose Basics: Pacing ( and Show vs. Tell)Hello, everyone! As you all know, this week over at projecteducate is Prose Basics. We're here to help all you prose writers (whether flash fiction, short stories, or novels) get better at your craft with some basic tips for growth. Today, I'm going to be talking about something you've probably heard about again and again: pacing.PE Prose Basics: Pacing ( and Show vs. Tell)1 year ago in Literature Features More Like This
What is Pacing?
No, it's not what you do when you're stuck on a scene and need to get up and stretch those leg muscles to get your writing juices flowing. It's actually a very important ability that writers have to control the speed their story is read. You as the author get to manipulate the reader in a way and make the speed of the story match the scene. What better way to drop the reader right into the moment? But, pacing also holds the ability to make or break your story and keep or lose your reader's interest. This is why it's so important in writing.
Setting the Scene:
shooting starThe space betweenshooting star1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
each star is a tragedy
waiting to happen --
and you fall
from the sky
all too easily.
TerroirI saved the important stuff;Terroir5 months ago in Free Verse More Like This
the scarf-blanket you knit me
before your fingers quit working,
your favorite book with its
w o r n p a g e s
f a d e d w o r d s.
I saved your smile and the way your
lips look when you say my name.
I filed them away with good
intentions, missed opportunities,
and wishes, and placed everything
in a jar, to keep for a rainy day
like the ones you used to love
(like the me you used to love).
But the way your skin felt floats
away on the wind,
like your words
of farewell on the last day I saw you.
I can't remember the shape of
your face, the angle of your lips,
the p r e c i s e way you wouldn't let
go of your
disenchanted superheroyou are my kryptonitedisenchanted superhero1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
even though i’m no superman;
i’m just riddled with weakness,
but i must be strong enough
to keep you.
(you are a drug
i can’t put down.
i don’t want to.)
we are standing on a precipice,
and i’m realizing i can’t fly.
(will you jump
on the way down.)
your hand is warm in mine
and i’m not strong enough to let go.
(stay by me.
be my strength,
because i’m not a super hero
and i can’t save you.
swallow the universedecay remembers you --swallow the universe5 months ago in Free Verse More Like This
fever breath and ocean-eyed ghosts,
secrets that smoke with poison desire.
we wake only to drink, to devour
the naked voices of dismantled stars.
glass kisses turn into granite lips
and pillars of salt; a haunted embrace
melts into the cracks of the universe.
all aboardblasphemousall aboard1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
in this quiet;
Midnight Dancea necklace of clouds adorns the moon,Midnight Dance1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
silken strands supporting its weight.
you are a streak of light tearing
through the sky, swallowing every
star you blot out. you store them
in your evanescent eyes, making
them a beacon on the darkest night.
your lips are cold
when they meet my lips,
and your skin
copper and adventure.
the sun sits in the hollow
of your throat as you sway
to the music drifting through
sickly sweet air.
your feet are heavy on mine --
the tug of the ocean,
drowning me in your
our quicksilver tango cuts
through the night, leaving a trail
of acidic pleasure and
i believed you were human
but you have
instead of a heart.
your hum is soft,
as i teach you to dance
under midnight's glow.
augustyou tear apartaugust1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
every aspect of me,
and i lie on the ground.
still not whole.
PE Prose Basics: Revise and EditProse Basics Week is winding down now and hopefully you've learned a lot from the brilliant past articles. But, there's more to writing than just getting that first draft done, isn't there? That's where the next big crucial step comes in: revision.PE Prose Basics: Revise and Edit1 year ago in Literature Features More Like This
The Art of Revising:
Revision is such a huge topic to cover, especially since there are many ways to go about it. You can do self-edits, which always are a good first step, or you can get outside revisions from peers. Both are good ideas to really get your work to be top notch. But, the big thing to remember is that there's more to just editing your work than cleaning up a few spelling and grammar mistakes. Revising also includes corrections to sentence flow, scenes, and sometimes overall plot. So, before we jump into some ways to edit, here are a few different terms of methods of editing that may be handy to know-- especially if you're asking a peer to help you with revisions.
sunset kissesyou pour me a cup of sunrise in the morning,sunset kisses2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
right after you caress my moonshine face,
covering it with glowing starkisses before
you spread your wings and jump into the diamond sky.
i've been dreading this day for eternity;
the day you never return from the dark matter,
never return to pour me another cup
of the sunset sprawling across my mind.