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    WARNING: Stories on this site may contain mature language and situations, and may be inappropriate for readers under the age of 18.

    BRYONY By Craig Young
    June 17, 2013  Short stories   Tags:   

    As she lay waiting for the end to happen, holding Bryony in her arms, Rosa thought back to how they came to be lying together on this bed. The sounds of the distant zees cut through the night, but there was no chance that they’d make it in here. She couldn’t do it to the woman she loved. 

    Lieutenant Rosa Carlsson had been a soldier in the Federal Republican Australian Army. She’d watched one city after another fall to the zombie onslaught, the unstoppable disfigured, groaning, ravenous tide of blood, gore and bone. Central authority disintegrated as the Queensland front collapsed and the carnage spread out over the Eastern Coast.  The Prime Minister was found in his Canberra office, beside a smoking pistol, despite his earlier professed earnest Catholic opposition to suicide.

    By some miracle, she’d survived the fall of Sydney, alone of all her unit. She tried to radio for instructions as the deadly locust swarm of revenants ploughed downward through New South Wales, westward and southward into South Australia and Victoria. For a while, she tried to raise Central HQ, but a lone, functioning distant telecommunication hub disavailed her of any forelorn heroic aspirations. Apparently, there was some last stand occurring down in Melbourne, and Tasmania was protected by the Bass Strait.

    Rosa left civilisation behind her, with a backpack and supplies taken from a deserted wilderness supplies centre. It would have been theft, if there were anyone left to notice. But there wasn’t- apart from the Aboriginal communities in the desert. But then, their ancestors had survived there for more than eighty thousand years. However, the bitterness of occupation and invasion does not yield easily and she learnt to keep away from outlying camps and outposts.

    More than the zombies, the horror was that of utter desolation and desertion. Foolishly, there had been calls for evacuation of sparsely populated population centres to the ‘safety’ of the cities, given that the latter were ‘indefensible.’

    The wind was funereal and keening a dirge for the fall of that continent to the undead when she rounded the hill and saw the settlement spread out before her. She was down to her last rations and realised how dirty and parched she must look. Later, Bryony had told her that Rosa had been unable to make it the final three kays en route across the burning sandy plain and collapsed. From a gantry high above, Bryony Pearson had seen the incomer and strongarmed a rescue team out to the exhausted, dessicated servicewoman.

    Pearson Hill had been a ranch. Bryony Pearson was its owner and now its feudal chatelaine. And, something more, as Rosa regained her figure and her health under the administration of the rough-hewn, bawdy, but compassionate woman. And then, one night, Bryony had shut the door behind her and started to undress. She’d read Rosa correctly, as the sinewy, tanned, naked body lay beside her and reached for her. She reached back, putting the memories of Toni back in Saint Kilda and the flat at the back of her mind.

    It was an eden in the desert, but it came with an inbuilt snake, too. Little by little, Rosa came to notice oddities and irregularities, signs that the wilderness redoubt was not what it seemed. She caught sight of a well-thumbed copy of Mein Kampf in the library. Bryony shrugged when Rosa pointed it out, saying that her great-granddad had been a bit of a ratbag that way.

    But as time wore on, there were other signs. She caught sight of swastika and iron cross tattoos on some of Bryony’s men and women, with some racist epithets and derisive terms directed toward the vanished world. Yeah, Bryony said over coffee and cigarettes after a passionate previous night, but these are mining folk and hardscrabble farmers, love.

    So where was the rich cultural diversity that had characterised Australia before the fall?  And then, one night, she overheard one of the guardswomen refer to the “Arena” that evening.  Feigning a migraine and heavy period, she’d trailed a rowdy contingent of Pearson Hill inhabitants to a waterhole. And. And. And.

    What she saw there sickened her to the stomach. There were zees there, a pit of them, but that wasn’t all. There was a mother there and her screaming children, clad in a Muslim hijab, calling on Allah the Merciful and Compassionate to save them, to have mercy. They were in a cage, being lowered into the grasping, howling and mindless creatures into the pit below. And worst of all, there was Bryony, laughing, sneering at the captives, sharing in the unknown betrayal, as she cut the rope suspending the woman and her children above the once-human piranhas swarming below. Rosa wanted to cry out, but then she realised what that would mean. She forced herself to keep silent, and watched on. There were others.

    Her lover, her Bryony, was a butcher. She presided over an orgy of death and gore that evening, and all the victims were African, Asian, Arab or others who had the misfortune to be born to foreign born parents. Bryony’s face was filled with satanic abandonment and amusement, like a latter-day Ranavolana or Caligula. She stumbled away from the scene of depravity and carnage and was violently sick.

    When she had disgorged the last of her stomach lining, she looked back at the sound of corrupt revelry and celebration, listening to the screams and cries for mercy that never came.

    Rosa took steps over the next week or so. While she couldn’t bear to be in the cruel woman’s arms and barely tolerated her touch on her body, she masked it well. She debated inwardly whether or not she could do this. But little by little, her doubts eased. One evening, on lone sentry duty, “playing her part,” she eased acid into the lock and hinges of the gates and learned the programming sequence for the horn. On subsequent excursions into ruined Alice Springs thirty or so klicks away, she carefully noted the concentrations of zombies and fortuitously discovered a pack only twelve kilometres away in an abandoned mining outpost.

    She took quiet and careful steps, never arousing suspicion, as she listened to the racist banter of the men and women in the settlement around her, which only fuelled her resolve. After a fortnight, she was ready.

    Still, though, there was mourning and grieving for the woman that she had lost, even if she had never existed, other than in an idealized, romantic and erotic abstraction from the unspeakable reality.

    And then, on the final night, it happened. Overcoming her nausea, Rosa and Bryony had made love one final time. And then, in the bed that they shared, Rosa took a stiletto knife and plunged it deep into the brain of the woman that she had loved. A minute later, she triggered the siren.

    Klicks away, shambling and ravenous figures stumbled from their mineland territory, moving implacably toward the distant flashing lights and raucous noise. About that time, the first of the explosions hit the armoury and sentry towers. The gates of the settlement were blasted open and in the chaos, came the hammering on the door.

    Rosa feigned heavy drunkenness on the part of their leader, which was habitual after a particularly successful salvage mission or anti-zombie incident. She promised that she’d get her sober and said she supposed that the headwoman would  trust her loyal lieutenants to take up the slack.

    And then, she unscrewed the bottle of poison that she’d mixed. With the chaos of the bomb attacks, the wounded to tend to, and their obliviousness to risk, the outlying zombies staggered through the Pearson Hill gates into a settlement unable to resist them.

    There were cries of alarm and panic as the willing participants in torture and brutality ran out of ammunition and serviceable guns, and then there was running and screaming.

    In their room, Rosa knew that there was no way out for her, after what she had done. In fact, she had planned it that way. She was an honourable woman, and a loving one, and Bryony’s end had been quicker and cleaner than she had deserved, because, despite all that she had done, Rosa still loved the woman lying dead in the bed beside her.

    She checked her watch and felt the last signs of the cumulative poison that she’d taken start to take effect. She staggered toward the bed, lay down opposite Bryony’s body, with a perverse halo of blood and gore around her impaled head, kissed her one last time, readied her service revolver, and with the last of her strength, put it to her head and squeezed the trigger.

    There was only chaos and slaughter outside and then cries of despair and pain as the zombies overran Pearson Hill and massacred its inhabitants.

    They had shown others no mercy and received none themselves. Except for their deceptively beautiful headwoman.

     

    23 Comments

    1. Nicely done. I hate to think that instances such as those would exist in times like that but it’s almost a certainty that they would.

      Comment by Terry on June 17, 2013 @ 4:01 pm

    2. Yeah. The path of true love etc etc. Some people get lucky during the zombie apocalypse, some don’t.

      Comment by Craig Y on June 17, 2013 @ 4:53 pm

    3. she sees her lover murder people and decides to murder everyone she could in revenge. what a bitch.

      Comment by shawn on June 17, 2013 @ 7:01 pm

    4. Still loved her? This was an ok story and Lesbian Heroes adds another to the archive.

      Comment by empoftheearth on June 17, 2013 @ 9:24 pm

    5. A scary vignette of what monsters might do if no longer fearful of laws. Nice character and story. Thanks for posting!

      Comment by Brian on June 18, 2013 @ 9:52 pm

    6. Shawn, not everyone who survives the initial stage of a zombie apocalypse might deserve to do so. And look what they were doing to other survivors…

      Comment by Craig Y on June 19, 2013 @ 2:35 pm

    7. I think this was competently written, Interesting characters and a premise which isn’t totally over used, but at the risk of sounding homophobic (which I’m not) I just wonder what this author is trying to do with the stories. His last three have been about homosexual relations in the post apocalyptic zombie world. Ok, we get it. Seriously, I live in Seattle and I have friends and even employees who are Homosexual and the only problem I have with some of them is they just can’t shut up about it. The whole “We’re here, We’re Queer, Get used to it!” shouted at every available opportunity is just tiring. Homosexuality is now mainstream. So it’s time to just shut up about it and let it be mainstream. The thing about heterosexuals is, we don’t (for the most part) have hetro sex pride day walking around with our genetals hanging out, bull horning anyone who doesn’t agree with you and having to be the absolute, no doubts about it, most talked about person/subject in the room, arena, show, story, etc…
      This isn’t an anti homosexual rant, but I can’t help but feel that this author is using his stories to further shove homosexuality into everyones faces, again.
      after reading his last three stories, I felt homosexuality was the main theme, not the Z apocalypse. One or two stories about it, cool, but every single one? Come on. Lets hear something new and fresh!!
      I like your writing style, I would love to read a story by you that didn’t have to use a crutch to prop itself up. Without the “gimic” of the sexual orientation of the characters, what you are left with is a pretty plain narrative.
      Also, again, this is not intended to offend. I saw Nowie Iberra at ZomBcon a couple of years ago and I told him the same thing about the sex he puts in his books. Out of context, doesn’t further the story, and really cheapens the whole reading experience.

      Comment by Dennis on June 21, 2013 @ 9:28 pm

    8. Sorry about spelling etc, btw, I’m trying to type on a tiny netbook.
      I meant Bowie Ibarra, the author of the “Down the Road” series.

      Comment by Dennis on June 21, 2013 @ 9:34 pm

    9. “at the risk of sounding homophobic (which I’m not)”
      “This isn’t an anti homosexual rant, but I”

      You obviously have some perversion for the issue or you would not have supplied us with a wall of text telling us how not anti-gay you are while saying it isn’t ok to talk about it anymore. Also, Craig has many stories on the site and maybe homosexuality is his muse at the moment, obviously the editors for TOWWZ don’t see a problem with it.

      “I would love to read a story by you that didn’t have to use a crutch to prop itself up.”
      (That’s pathetic and an insult to his work.)

      How many stories do you have posted on the site Dennis?

      Comment by Richard Gustafson on June 22, 2013 @ 8:40 am

    10. Let me offer a different thought on the topic, since it was brought up.

      What if the only person you came across for over a year or two or three, just happened to be the same gender as you? What if you were so lonely after that year or two or three that, after getting to know someone really well, you might fall in love with them? The body has certain wants and needs. What if, after all of this time alone, that any human contact colors the vision to the point of gender not mattering?

      This line says a lot about that:

      ‘More than the zombies, the horror was that of utter desolation and desertion.’

      We live in a world where being homosexual is as common place as being straight. There are going to be moments in any post apocalyptic world where folks of the same gender are going to fall in love and become lovers. Even those who may, in a normal world, be as straight as an arrow, fall for someone of the same gender.

      Let’s take this a step further, though. The real story isn’t about Rose and Bryony being lesbians. The real story is about Rosa’s stand against the people who slaughtered other survivor’s. What Rosa does in this story is nothing short of noble. She is saving others from the possible slaughter at the hands of these butchers. They are not only brutal murderers, but they are killing folks of other races, kind of like a genocide. Think Hitler here.

      Rosa would have been an activist on the right side of things in the type of world this site builds on. Rosa was a hero, regardless of her sexual orientation.

      The story isn’t about a ‘we’re queer and we’re here so get over it,’ type of mentality. The story is about doing the right thing, even in a world such as this.

      Normally, I stay away from the comments and conversations that lead to heated debates, but some of the things in Dennis’s comment bother me, especially the gimmick comment. As a writer, it is my responsibility to create characters with real issues and real lives and real feelings. As a writer, it is my responsibility to give you what I think is the right response to each situation as it unfolds. The sexual orientation of the main character is not a gimmick in this story–it is an essential part of who she is, which makes what she does to her lover that much harder.

      The sex is not a gimmick. Why? There is none. There is the statement that they made love, but there is no real showing of sex. However, their making love is essential to the story because that shows that Bryony trusted Rosa enough to fall asleep with her around, which gave Rose the opportunity to drive the knife into her skull.

      As far as three stories in a row being about homosexuality: so? I often write four or five stories on the same topic before moving onto another one. I write on a topic until I am bored with it. It is that writing on the same topic (Zombies) for several stories that led to my series on this web site.

      On the same topic conversation is that one of the things you see in fiction writing is abuse, whether spousal, children, sexual, mental, substance, or even bullying. It is a topic that will always be a reality. As is homosexuality.

      I think it’s awesome that Craig has taken on the subject matter and created stories around it.

      I’m not angry about the comments made, though part of me really wants to be. Go back and read the stories in question. I’m willing to bet if the characters would have been straight and of opposite sex, none of these comments would have been made, including the sex as a gimmick one. And if that’s the case, then the homosexual tendencies of the characters in question, shouldn’t be, well, questioned.

      Comment by A.J. Brown on June 22, 2013 @ 10:31 am

    11. Can’t we all just get along?

      It may not have been an anti homosexual rant…but it was a rant nonetheless and a rant doesn’t normally end well, for anyone.
      I too wouldn’t normally take part in this type of discussion but I really enjoy visiting this site and wouldn’t want anyone to be angered, hurt or upset to the point where they would stop visiting or writing.
      After all, at the end of the day, we are talking about zombies, fictional, aren’t we all here ‘just for a bit o fun’?
      Like I said before; can’t we all just get along??

      Comment by Justin Dunne on June 22, 2013 @ 9:33 pm

    12. As I said, I’m not homophobic, and I actually wasn’t even thinking sexual when I brought this up. I merely noted that (sorry if I got this wrong, not all of his stories) the last three stories have been about homosexual relationships. I mentioned sex only because I was mentioning speaking with Bowie Ibarra about the sex in his books. I made that example because I wanted to show that I would be critical of heterosexual sexuality if I felt it was taking over the story. Or out of context, or gratuitous, etc…

      My wall of rant or whatever you want to call it, was me trying to explain very carefully what I feel that I was getting from these three stories combined and trying to delicately put it in a way that was an inoffensive as possible.

      Maybe Homosexuality is his muse at the moment. I never thought about it like that. Also, to answer one question: zero. I have submitted no stories to this site. That does not preclude me from making an observation and stating my feelings. Some people are hyper sensitive and really, no matter how delicately I put something or inoffensive as I try to be, there will always be someone who is going to rage about it because I am making a statement that that person doesn’t agree with.

      As I stated, I don’t know why the author decided to make three stories in a row center on homosexual characters. I was simply wondering if there was a bit of “Let’s get it out there and keep it out there” or if it was just what he wanted to write about. Seriously, no offense intended, no, I wasn’t talking about sex, I hadn’t really got past the basic relationship part. I was just wondering on the motivation on these, because, as I said, it was several in a row. I could see if it was a continuation of the same characters (although, it doesn’t need to be) and I do feel like that story line has become a bit cliche’ and that the relationship part was the only really original part of this last story at least.

      The one where he goes and finds his lover and lets himself be killed and turned for him I felt was a bit more original and could stand on it’s own regardless of the orientation of the characters. I agree that the characters in this story were interesting, the deed was noble etc etc etc… As I said before.

      Please don’t put words in my mouth or assign a status to my tolerances. I have already stated that I have many friends and even my two top guys at my company are not only gay, but also a couple and I support them and never treat any of my peeps different because of personal choices like that. I was only commenting on the seeming broadside of a trilogy of stories by the same author with one of the central themes being the same in each one.

      I questioned the motivation, muse, inspiration, or whatever you want to call it, and stated my opinion that after the third one I was getting a bit tired of the same theme. As far as it being a well used idea, we just watched basically the same thing unfolding on The Walking Dead when Andrea finds that the Governor is killing survivors and she almost did the same thing in this story. After a night of lovemaking, pulled out a knife and…
      Well, Andrea couldn’t bring herself to do it, but I have seen that story line probably a dozen times or more in various movies, stories, books, etc… so I really feel this story was used and abused long before this author put a homosexual twist on it.

      Simple. Wall of words to explain what I was thinking. Trying not to offend. These comment areas are here exactly for this reason. To comment on the stories, give praise if you like, ask questions and give criticisms if you got ’em.

      Again, apologies for any grammatical or spelling errors. I’m on a tiny little keyboard.

      Comment by Dennis on June 23, 2013 @ 1:41 am

    13. Ahhh… much better explanation. The first wall of words, as you put it, really sounded like a slap in the face to Craig, who is a very creative writer. Sometimes when explaining things via printed word, emotions are lost in the translations, and in this case a careful mannerism was lost. I’m glad you came back and explained your thoughts a little better, this time giving examples.

      Thank you for doing so.

      And, please, feel free to comment on any story, positive or negative. I think this is the first time since I’ve been part of this site that a few feathers were ruffled.

      Again, thank you for clarifying things.

      Comment by A.J. Brown on June 23, 2013 @ 6:22 am

    14. Thank you for understanding A.J.

      Comment by Dennis on June 23, 2013 @ 3:26 pm

    15. Okay, yes, watching Andrea being unable to do the same thing to the Governor was a motivation for Rosa to do the opposite thing to Bryony because of the latter’s murderous attitude toward ethnic minority survivors. But that sort of act has consquences and I decided to explore them in this story.

      Lesbians and gay men do survive the zombie apocalypse. Some are resourceful, intelligent and brave people, and some are just as verminous, brutal and psychotic as their equally murderous straight counterparts. It’s not all monochrome and they don’t line up on the side of virtue.

      And I also intend to explore other areas of diversity. Look at my “Icewoman” story. When was the last time anyone explored the context of people with intellectual or physical disabilities surviving within that world? Would indigenous people have a survival advantage if they lived on their ancestral land so they really knew the terrain?

      Not everyone is going to be a Rambo or Ripley in that context. Okay, maybe some Ripleys, because I like writing about strong female characters 🙂

      Comment by Craig Y on June 23, 2013 @ 4:39 pm

    16. Thank you Craig. I hope you can see that I wasn’t trying to be mean or degrading nor was I in any way trying to disparage homosexuality, I just wanted to say what it made me feel after reading this story. As I said, your writing is good and I enjoyed all of the stories. I guess I was using the comments section to ask a question about possible underlying themes or motivations in the story, kind of like you do with a book club when everyone reads the same book and then discuss, analyze etc… We did this in College in writing classes as well back in the day (I minored in English Lit.)

      I applaud any and all stories and the authors who put them up for us to read. Believe me when I say, I have been reading stories on this site for years, and when I found it, I went back to the first story and read them all until I got to the current ones. That was several years ago, so I’m not a troll just jumping on here to stir things up. Certain subjects are going to hit a nerve with some people every time, and I was aware of that and expected some flaming when I wrote that, but to come back and be conciliatory or back off on my gut feelings would be dishonest and not fair to either myself or to you.

      I know that things written on the internet have a way of being misinterpreted, or to be read in such a way that the reader puts the comments in a box of their own devising that could be totally the opposite of how something was intended to be read.

      So, I do apologize for any feelings I may have bent, there was no intention to do so. I also will say, I am not a professional writer, but I do own a business and have written all of my own literature, including brochures, letters of introduction, and explanations, as well as writing bids and proposals for some huge mega-corporations (I’m in the Seattle area in the service industry, so you can possibly guess some of the big companies I deal with that may or may not be in the aerospace and/or software industries may be). I can neither confirm nor deny, lol.

      I have written fiction on the side and I do have an 85% or so finished story I have that I would submit, but I have an editor friend who wants to put it in their fall anthology. It’s been read and written, re-written and now needs about 15 more re-writes until a final draft will be ready. I have no idea how it works and if I submit my story here, if there is some reason it won’t end up in print in a trade paperback anthology. So, that is the reason I haven’t submitted anything to date.

      I wrote my story with this site in mind and made the length about what the average longer short story would be here, and it is a genesis story, so there is room to take it further if I wanted to, but I really need to talk to my editor (I promised her this story, and she is an old friend). She does mostly paranormal romance, which isn’t really my thing, and I could probably crank a bunch of that stuff out if I wanted to, I just really don’t care for it. My story is more hard core survival and reflection on how it occurred, so I don’t know if she would ever want anything further out of me in this vein anyway. She’s Darklight Publishing and Hot Ink Press.

      Sara is a great person, but she’s been so busy with the romance stuff, she hasn’t had much time to answer a few direct questions from me about the rights of stories and if you submit them, do they become property of someone else, or do you give up any rights at all. She might not have ever been asked that question, just to be fair to her.

      So I may eventually submit something here and I give everyone my blessings on picking it apart, questioning motives and all that gladly 🙂

      Anyway, thanks for understanding and giving me a chance to further explain my intentions etc… and realizing that I wasn’t trolling or trying to start a flame war.

      That sort of thing doesn’t need to be on this site.

      AND MOST OF ALL, THANK YOU CRAIG AND ALL THE OTHER WONDERFUL AUTHORS WHO PUT THEIR HARD WORK AND TIME INTO WRITING GREAT STORIES TO KEEP US ENTERTAINED.

      Dennis

      Comment by dennis on June 23, 2013 @ 11:02 pm

    17. I love this thread, and the way its resolved itself.

      From the Editors point of view all we would add is that site content is dictated by three things. The stories that are submitted, the rate they are submitted, and the editorial process.

      The guidelines we work to are fairly strict in terms of spelling errors, grammar, structure etc. This is purely to keep the readability of the stories high. In addition there can be common types of story submitted and for this reason we tend to raise the bar for these so the stories we post are fresh and original, or just very damn good. We don’t reject stories for religious, political, or any other reason as the point of view of the authors should be as random as the types of survivors of the ZA. Or rather we have yet to have a story submitted we wouldn’t publish because of its viewpoint (we are after all primarily a Zombie horror site). So most things go.

      However, we can’t do anything about the frequency and rate of stories that are submitted by a number of, or a singular author. Mr Young is particularly prolific, much more so than any other person who submits to the site regularly, and at a time where we receive less stories overall. He also writes short, punchy and generally good stories from some unique perspectives. There are just a lot of them 🙂 this is why he has been appearing so regularly on the site recently. Believe it or not, I have also rejected some which I didn’t feel were of a high enough quality.

      The upshot is I don’t think Craig is going anywhere and I hope to read more about the ZA hitting NZ and the way that affects all aspects of that society.

      Comment by Pete Bevan on June 25, 2013 @ 4:06 pm

    18. I would like to add my own two cents now that statements have been clarified and put into context. First off, I admit that I tend to fly off the handle at times, shoot first and ask questions later but re-reading your first post Dennis, I stick with the brunt of my original comment. I do realize though that with your following posts, we are not dealing with someone that posted a comment for the sake of argument and that you truly were using the comments section to open discussion. Also, I would like to apologize about my comment on how many stories you have posted on TOWWZ. I have a total of three that do the site no justice and are far from being on par with Mr. Youngs and many others. It was wrong of me to make any assumptions as to your writing abilities.

      Craig, great work as usual.

      Comment by Richard Gustafson on June 26, 2013 @ 10:08 am

    19. Richard,
      No harm done, I realized just because of the simple fact that I had to further explain myself, that I hadn’t made my intentions clear in my first comment. It was written rather bruskly and I easily see how it was taken as non helpful criticism. Having the opportunity to further explain my motivations was great, because it is rare that people get to do that in real life. Usually it looks like backpedaling to avoid further conflict, and in this case I feel that everyone was voicing their feelings and really communicating beyond just a wall of politeness. I think that’s great. I love this site, I took everyone’s reactions to what I wrote to heart and I must also apologize for not thinking through what I wrote more carefully, and I did back up, read what I had written and did manage to see it from another’s point of view.
      Richard, you were the one who really gave me my first answer anyway. When you said “Muse” I really hadn’t fathomed that there wasn’t some grand scheme or framework carefully laid out and the story built over it. Like building a house, the foundation needs to be the strongest part. I think a little differently than most. I have a very logical “If – Then” sequence of thinking. I am very imaginative and always have been, but the same thing that makes computer language so precise, is also exactly the formula that the great philosophers use. The “If this happens, then this happens”. Very cause and effect. I find it interesting that it is such a base concept and a simple formula, but it can be used for the most precise mathmatics, but also for contemplating our place in the universe or even “Do we really exist”?

      That may be a bit of a tangent, but I hope it explains why I write a bit bold and can (let’s just say this isn’t the first time I’ve stirred up a hornets nest with something I wrote) and I really do appreciate the feedback and the chance to further explain where I was coming from.
      As far as “muse”, it seriously didn’t enter my mind that it may have just been someones flight of fancy. I superimposed my own reasoning over someone else’s work and didn’t take into account that there really didn’t need to be any specific motivation other than the words came and he wrote them.

      So, everyone here has been very cool and very understanding by letting me further explain myself.

      Craig, Thanks for the wonderful story,
      Moderators, Thanks for not just banning me.
      Richard, Thanks for pointing out where I was rubbing you the wrong way, It gave me the insight to correct my comment.
      Everyone else, On to the next stories!

      Comment by Dennis on July 2, 2013 @ 1:26 am

    20. I came to this thread late and was happy to see the interesting discussion that developed from it.

      Comment by Pete Bevan on July 2, 2013 @ 1:00 pm

    21. awwww Dennis don’t like gay zombies. Hahahahahaha get over urself dude. lmao.

      Comment by neecey on July 15, 2013 @ 10:24 pm

    22. Hey Craig, I’ve been wondering, where did you get the title from?

      Comment by A.J. Brown on July 18, 2013 @ 12:22 pm

    23. I’ve had a character called Bryony Pearson in my unpublished pre-zombie fiction for decades, usually as a machiavellean Thatcher-plus female despot. So, I decided to change locales for her from the United Kingdom to Australia, turn her into a lesbian and white supremacist, but otherwise leave her underlying psychopathology intact.

      Comment by Craig Y on July 18, 2013 @ 4:44 pm

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