The NEEDLE in the Box Contest

Last Spring I reviewed, commented on, a new seasonal crime noir magazine called NEEDLE edited by Steve Weddle. The debut was really a knock out of the park as far as I’m concerned. Every story really hit the mark and made me a fan.

Another thing NEEDLE, Steve and the community revolving around the magazine, did was to get me writing again. I’ve slacked off the last month or so, life gets the better of us sometimes, but seeing that there’s a new edition of NEEDLE out there has the old juices flowing. Need to write more, want to write more.

More than anything, I want the latest copy of NEEDLE. So I jump over to the order site Friday and precede to order a copy. Then I think, wait a minute I could share this, share it with everyone. OK, maybe not everyone. As generous as I can be, I can’t feed the world. I can give some lucky person a chance at winning a copy of NEEDLE. That’s the ticket.

So I ordered two. One for me, and one for who?

NEEDLE in the Box Contest

I’ve participated in a handful of writing challenges, ones that reward me with nothing more than the completion of a short story, a bit of flash fiction. This is the first time to host one, so let’s get on with it.

Not long ago Richard Kelly adapted Richard Matheson’s short story “Button, Button” into the movie The Box starring the Cameron “not as cute” Diaz and James “I’m a real boy” Marsden. Good story, not so good movie (not horrible mind you). The core of the movie is about making a choice and living with it. That’s not what this writing contest is about.

No, I’m simple. It’s about the box. About receiving a box and the consequences of what is inside. Now what’s inside is completely up to you. How the box is received is completely up to you. The only thing required to be in the story is that your protagonist or antagonist receive a box unsolicited. What you do to them after that, well I’ll leave that up to your devilishly criminal minds.

Now some guidelines:

Length: 2000 words
Deadline: September 10th
Theme: Receiving an unsolicited unmarked box
Genre: Crime, Noir
Prize: NEEDLE: A Magazine of Noir Summer 2010

Post a link to your entry in the comments.

Good luck. I look forward to some good reading.

Links:

NEEDLE –  A Magazine of Noir
Order NEEDLE Summer 2010
Steve Weddle

A little more focus … Please?

Having been a procrastinator all of my life, I perceive there are two different types. The apathetic procrastinator and the impatient procrastinator.

The apathetic procrastinator, or the AP, is distinguished by not really caring if they (he or she) finishes their goal. The idea sounded cool, for a moment, but if it get’s done what’s it really going to matter? There’s a bit of self-loathing involved and the AP can’t really see the reward in finishing the project and accomplish their goal.

APs have somewhat of an Eeyore complex. Oh, bother.

On the other hand, you have the impatient procrastinator, IPs. These people have stars in their eyes. They’ve won the game, the award, the accolades before even starting their project. They’re in love with the idea for about 5 seconds. Then the crashing reality that that game, those awards and accolades are months, years, maybe a decade away. They can’t wait that long, they can’t put all that effort and time and get nothing. The drive and dedication dries up like a prairie rain storm.

IPs really want to be stars, but would rather start something new than see the project all the way to the end. Real fly-by-nighters.

Me, I’m a bit bi-polar with my procrastination. I genuinely start with tons of ambition and gusto, then get hit simultaneously with the feeling I’ll never get to the end and if I do, no one cares. Or at least that’s the way I feel. And to top it off, I often get hit with too many ideas. Where to start, how to start?

I thought I was cured for a while. I was focusing on one thing, now I can’t find focus on anything. Just a lot of buzzing around my head followed by a ton of self-doubt.

I’m going change though. I’ve fiddled away the last 15+ years with this kind of nonsense. Sure there were other reasons, but that just falls to the core of all procrastinators. Excuses.

I don’t need anymore excuses. Time to get focused and put those projects out there to speak for themselves. Stop the dreaming and the despairing.

In the immortal words of the most famous redneck, “Time to Git’r Done!”