Thursday, March 23, 2017

Mexican Cruise


From March 26th (this Sunday) to April 4th (next Tuesday), I’m going to have a minimal presence on the internet due to a Mexican cruise I’m going on with my parents with a trip to Disneyland afterwards. It feels good to get out of the house every then and what better way to do it than by embarking on a Mexican cruise? Beautiful beaches, beautiful women, beautiful sunshine…beautiful everything! I might even bring home a pair of Mickey Mouse ears, hopefully ones that will fit over my gigantic head.

As I’ve said with past vacations, my online presence will be reduced to answering messages here and there and nothing more. That means for the next two WSS contests (including this one), I’m going to withdraw my participation. No Demon Axe chapters until I get back home in my own beddy-bye with my own kitty-pie. Heh, that rhymes. Maybe I’ll get pairs of mouse ears for my kitties and puppies. Can you imagine how silly Maggie would look with Mickey Mouse ears? She already looks like a Disney dog, so what more could we possibly do? Hehe!

Adios, amigos! Thanks for reading!


My paperback copy of Poison Tongue Tales has finally arrived in the mail today. Everything looks in tiptop condition, so I gave my approval for publication and it’ll be a few days before my book becomes available on Amazon. A lot of hard work went into editing the hell out of this collection of short stories. I know it’ll be well-received by those who decide to buy a copy. My biggest thanks goes out to Marie Krepps for her wise-assed critiques and awesome cover-designing skills. She did a lot for me over the past few years and it’s a debt I can never repay no matter how hard I try. Thank you so much, Babe-a-Licious Mondo!


Q: What did Roman Reigns say to Captain Jack Sparrow?

A: I thought pirates had cannonballs. It turns out you’re just smuggling some BB pellets.


GENRE: Family Drama
GRADE: Mixed

Verbal sparring is the conversation of choice within a Jewish-British family that consists of rightwing nut job father Christopher, detective novelist mother Beth, schizophrenic college student Daniel, spitfire opera star Ruth, and the centerpiece of this play, the deaf translator Billy. Their already volatile situation is made worse when Billy finds romance with another deaf person named Sylvia, who teaches him sign language. Billy believes that Sylvia has been more supportive of him than his own family and the two move into an apartment together. The common theme of this play is finding acceptance in a world that seems to be closing in around the oppressed.

This play is divided into two acts and I can safely say that the second is better than the first. The first act serves as an introduction to all of the dysfunction within Billy’s argumentative family. While I understand that building up to the climax has to start somewhere, the first act felt unrealistic to me as far as fighting goes. It seemed like the characters were arguing for the sake of arguing. Instead of resolving their differences, the family comes off as total jerks that nobody wants to relate to. Sure, there are some funny lines in there, but humor is subjective and I only laughed three times during this whole play. My favorite line has to be when the father makes a joke about how having sex with an ugly woman is like “sticking your cock in a cement mixer”. Every other piece of dialogue comes off as childish and mean-spirited. I bet there are families like that out there, but that doesn’t necessarily mean I want to be around them.

The second act was a breath of fresh air compared to the first. Instead of mindless bickering that doesn’t feel organic, you get true emotional situations. Arbitrary anger is replaced with pain, heartbreak, and passion. You can feel Sylvia’s heart shattering into a million pieces when she talks about feeling alone in this world even among a group of other deaf people. When Billy throws his Santa hat in frustration, you’d better have some tissues in your pockets. When Daniel’s stammering habits come back to haunt him, you want to be part of his hug with Billy near the end. Even though they had a blandly angry script to work with in act one, the actors did a phenomenal job in carrying the drama through. Imagine what they can pull off when the emotions are believable and relatable on a deeper level.

Speaking of believability, Daniel’s schizophrenic quirks struck a chord within me. As many of my readers know, I’ve been a schizophrenic since 2002, maybe earlier. The struggle to shut up the voices, the feeling of despair, the voices interrupting during important conversations, the insulting language in which the voices speak, those were all things I could relate to when it came to Daniel’s character. By the time the play was over, I was rooting for him to get better. In act one, however, he acts like a major pain in the ass and in many cases a verbal bully, which is why it took so long for me to relate to him. But relate to him I did. I even had to remind myself that erratic behavior is a common symptom of schizophrenia. Lord knows I’ve done some crazy stuff during the early onset of my disease.

Somewhere in the scuffle of hateful dialogue, there are messages about accepting each other for who we are, being free-thinking individuals, and being supportive when it truly counts. You might have to wait a while for the more tender parts of the play to show themselves, but it’ll be worth the wait. Some of the banter might remind you of your own family, though hopefully not to that extreme. If you’re not overly sensitive when it comes to dysfunctional family matters, then I would advise you to buy a ticket to see this play. Patience is a virtue, which is true for living with crazy characters and watching this performance. I believe a mixed grade will do just fine.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

McDonald's Prostitute

Which tastes worse: the blowjob or the burger?
Which is more sadistic: slavery or murder?
Which is more dangerous: the fries or the lies?
Which is more confusing: the whats or the whys?
Stretched so thin like lying on a torture table
Scraping up whatever small change you’re able
Put on the pounds and make orgasmic sounds
Nobody will help you in this selfish town

McDonald’s prostitute, what’re you fighting for?
An economy that doesn’t subsidize war?
A market that doesn’t overpower the rich?
They’ll be the first to tell you that life is a bitch!

What ice cream do you want: vanilla or chocolate?
Where’s your money: in your purse or your pocket?
Where do you call home: the bridge or the streets?
What’s the ending to this story: victory or defeat?
I would never judge you for your desperation
I would never insult you or give you lacerations
It’s not your fault and you’re not in the wrong
Have my twenty dollar bill and the lyrics to this song

McDonald’s prostitute, what’re you fighting for?
An economy that doesn’t subsidize war?
A market that doesn’t overpower the rich?
They’ll be the first to tell you that life is a bitch!

A triple bacon burger with onions and pickles
A man in black robes with a sick-looking sickle
The loneliness will kill you before the food does
A disgusting fucking joke is what this all was
Everybody wanted it to go wrong from the start
They vote with their balls and not with their hearts
Now they can’t even fill up their shopping carts
Except with their last possessions and metal parts

McDonald’s prostitute, what’re you fighting for?
An economy that doesn’t subsidize war?
A market that doesn’t overpower the rich?

They’ll be the first to tell you that life is a bitch!

Sunday, March 19, 2017

"What Hides in the Darkness" by K.L. Cottrell

BOOK TITLE: What Hides in the Darkness
AUTHOR: K.L. Cottrell
YEAR: 2014
GENRE: Fiction
SUBGENRE: Paranormal Fantasy
GRADE: Extra Credit

Everywhere Marienne goes, she sees hideous monsters disguised as real people. It started when she lost her parents in a car accident and her sister Claire blamed her for it. At first Marienne believes she’s going crazy until she sees two of these Hellions gang up on a handsome young man named Gabe. All pumped full of adrenaline, she joins the fray and helps him destroy both monsters. It is then revealed that Marienne is not alone when it comes to her ability to detect Hellions. Those with this ability are referred to as The Light Force. She undergoes athletic and combative training with other members of The Light as part of her newfound calling in wiping out these demonic beasts.

One of the many things I enjoyed about this book was how lovable these main characters are. It shows in the flirtatious and sometimes awkward way in which Marienne and Gabe talk to each other and slowly build up their budding romance. It also shows when Beatrix and Wes, a married Light Force couple, have each other’s backs through the hardest of times. Combine all four of these awesome characters together and you have a recipe for sweetness that rivals Betty Crocker cake mix. They stick together through thick and thin. They laugh and smile when they’re having fun together and cry endlessly for each other when danger strikes. With this kind of unbreakable friendship, the Hellions don’t stand a chance.

In addition to characters you will instantly fall in love with, others have the world’s most punchable faces. The character I despise most is Rafe, the predatory ex-boyfriend of Marienne who cheated on her with her best friend Audrey and wonders why things ended the way they did. Then you have the ultra-nutty sister Claire, who insults and slaps the stuffing out of Marienne whenever she gets the chance. And don’t get me started about Claire’s new boyfriend Shaun. Actually, I probably shouldn’t get started on him anyways since there’s a twist in the middle of the book about Shaun and I don’t want to give away spoilers. The most irritating part about these villains is that they’re realistic and actually believe in the hate they’re preaching. In wrestling lingo, these people are called “heels” and they’re doing a great job of angering the reader.

And now for the reason why I gave this book an ultra-rare extra credit grade (five stars). I mentioned before how sweet and likeable the heroic characters were. The physical training Marienne goes through reflects so much of those traits that it doesn’t feel like an overwhelming marine boot camp storyline. She’s self-motivated enough that she gets through her intense exercises and sparring sessions without one line ripped from R. Lee Ermey’s character in Full Metal Jacket. I believe we all have the ability to motivate ourselves through anything if we feel passionately enough about it. Knowing Marienne, Gabe, Wes, and Beatrix’s friendship is still intact after all of this heavy work is refreshing to me, especially after watching movies and TV shows where the drill instructor mentality rules over everything. The battles and traumas the heroes endure in this book are no joke, so they have to be there for each other and have emotional moments every now and then.

The fast pace, the likeable heroes, the despicable villains, the world building, and the loving nature of it all make What Hides in the Darkness an awesome book worth reading from beginning to end. The author even does a great job of making you want to complete the trilogy with her perfectly-timed cliffhanger ending. Give this woman your patronage and she’ll give you five-star entertainment!

Saturday, March 18, 2017

The Perks of Being a Zombie

I once had wild dreams of being a creator
But everyone else was a heel commentator
“Fix computers, scoop ice cream into cones
Do it all for your wallet and future home”
But I resisted every obnoxious voice
The ones in my head gave me no choice
“Listen and conform to everything we say
If you don’t want bleed for the rest of the day”

“Move it! Move it! Get your fat ass in gear!
Let’s go! Let’s go! Before I kick you in the rear!
Faster! Faster! Listen to what’s in your ear!
The perks of being a zombie are always clear!”

I packed up and went to the indoctrination center
The closest place to hell that I could ever enter
I wouldn’t know it from the numbness in my brain
When it comes to pain, it all feels the same
Psychotic behavior was disguised as laziness
Torment and anguish was disguised as craziness
I never felt so naked in all of my goddamn life
The suicidal tendencies always felt so right

“Move it! Move it! Get your fat ass in gear!
Let’s go! Let’s go! Before I kick you in the rear!
Faster! Faster! Listen to what’s in your ear!
The perks of being a zombie are always clear!”

I had a Broken Universe before it became cool
My pillow was always soaked in undead drool
My dreams were grayer than the winter shadow
Doing my homework was always such a battle
One day in psychology class, I found the name
Of the force inside me that brought me shame
A condition that I thought was traumatic cinema
Name of my disease was paranoid schizophrenia

I am the master! You are the slave!
Nobody tells me how to behave!
It took a whole decade, but my eyes are wide!
I don’t have to run, I don’t have to hide!
My nights are cozy, my dreams are sweeter!
I’m a positive force and a negative eater!
You call me crazy and I give my thanks!

I’m the captain of the ship, I’m pulling rank!

Friday, March 17, 2017

Demon Axe, Chapter 17

“It’s always darkest before the dawn.”

These gentle words brought a flood of light into Raven’s blacked out field of vision. She squinted so that her eyes could adjust, but they were still stinging from her battle with Roger Zee. Upon being reminded of that hideous name, she sat up with a quickness only to clutch her aching ribs and be laid back down again by powerful hands on her arms. Every part of her body felt like it was branded with a hot iron. Yet in this familiar man’s care, she remained relaxed.

Her burning eyes opened some more until the blurry shape before her straightened into focus. The long brown hair, the middle-aged face, the rock n’ roll T-shirt, they were all there. Raven couldn’t believe such gentle care came from a man whose occupation required fiery aggression. It was him alright. The man she had so many petty arguments with, yet couldn’t be without. Daniel Mercer smiled down on her with the face only a mother could love…a Mother of Dragons, that is.

“Daniel…we have to….we have to find my father…” whimpered Raven.

“I know, Raven. Trust me, I know. Shawn and I got here a little too late. I’m so sorry,” said Daniel.

With her clear vision, the elf princess gazed around the room to find she was lying on a police blanket in the back of a SWAT van. The dented shelter wasn’t pretty nor was the van mobile at all, but it was better than the battlefield of dead bodies waiting for them outside. Tears welled up in Raven’s eyes as she thought of her lost comrades.

Daniel wiped them away with the bottom of his shirt and said, “It’ll be okay. We’re going to find your father and that bastard Roger. But you need to rest for now. You were badly beaten when we found you.”

“How can I even think about resting when…?” cried Raven.

“Listen to me,” said Daniel as he held the elf’s hand in his own. “I know how much your father means to you. But if you go out and look for him in the condition you’re in, you won’t stand a chance. I know this, because I too had to stay in the hospital before I came here. That’s the reason why I was late.”

Raven’s face oozed with concern and sorrow when she asked, “Why were you in the hospital, Daniel? What did Roger do to you?”

The singer breathed a deep sigh and pinched the bridge of his nose. After a few more heavy breaths, he said with trepidation, “He tortured me. I formed a new band just as I said I would…and he took all of us to a black site…he…” Daniel rubbed the sogginess out of his eyes. “He killed all of them right in front of me…and he took me to a dark room…he fucking tortured me with my own music…”

The elf princess squeezed Daniel’s hand in sympathy while using her other hand to brush his long locks. “That’s awful…He’s a goddamn monster!”

“For a while, I didn’t think I could ever be interested in metal music again. I thought my dream was over. The very thing that got me through life was going to be taken away from me. And then…I, uh…the place I went to in order to stop the pain…was you, Raven. I thought about how lovely you were…how much you cared…how you saved me from my own nightmares…It’s the only thing that got me through it all. If it wasn’t for those images, I probably would have…killed myself,” sobbed Daniel.

Despite having a bruised and battered body, Raven found the strength to slowly sit up and give her friend a loving hug, which he returned. They stayed locked in each other’s embrace for the longest time. Long enough to finally ignore their own pain, both physical and emotional.

“There’s something I have to tell you, Daniel. It’s about why you were chosen to take on Roger,” confessed Raven.

When the embrace was gingerly broken, the singer said, “You don’t owe me an explanation. I know what I must do and why I should do it.”

“No, you don’t understand. It’s deeper than that, Daniel. Please, let me explain,” said Raven as she laid back down on the blanket. “My father has been around for many generations. He doesn’t have much longer to live. For a while we’ve been looking around scouting for a new king to rule over the elves. My father chose you, Daniel. He’s been watching you for a long time. He knows how passionate you can be. He knows where your morals lie. He believes in you.”

Daniel’s expression softened when he said, “But…I don’t know how to be a leader, Raven. I don’t know anything about being a politician. I led two heavy metal bands and all members of both bands are fucking dead. They’re dead because of me.”

“You don’t actually believe that, do you?” asked Raven. “What did I teach you when I showed you the EMDR technique at the arena? Besides, I’m not much of a leader either as you can tell from the dead bodies outside. But if we’re judging our leadership skills based on another asshole’s actions, then you are really the only option we have. How is this any different from the politics of your human world?”

“Gee, thanks, Raven,” said Daniel with a light chuckle. Raven giggled as well. “But if we can be serious for a moment, what do I have to offer the elves if I can’t even handle my own goddamn life?”

“You have something that Roger hates with all of his might. You have creativity. You have music. You have a soul. A good soul, at that. Elves are passionate about the arts as you can tell from the lovely shapes of our buildings…before they were destroyed of course. Elves especially love music. That microphone we gave you is imbued with the souls of lost musicians. Every time you scream into the mouthpiece, you’re channeling their energy into every word you speak. When you sang that line about darkness before dawn, you made me believe in myself again. That’s how powerful your words really are. That’s why you must be next in line for the elven throne.”

Daniel hung his head in contemplation while petting Raven’s arm. The weight of the elven world rested on his shoulders, but he was determined to carry it with a titan’s strength. He lifted his head up to give an answer and a tiny smile was etched on his face. “If I become king of the elves…does that make you my queen?”

Raven threw her head back and giggled lightly enough to not aggravate her injuries. She thought it was just a joke, but when the laughter ceased, she saw the passion in Daniel’s eyes that King Arthur Triscloud himself boasted about. That was the look of someone with a purpose. That was the look of a hero. He knew he couldn’t rule this kingdom alone. He also knew he couldn’t live this life alone. He’d done the latter for so long throughout this campaign.

“Oh, Daniel…” whispered Raven as the two of them leaned in for a passionate kiss. As they brushed lips together and wrestled tongues, every ounce of energy they held back before came rushing into this loving moment. They spent so long denying each other and bickering senselessly. Neither of them wanted to give into each other until this private moment together. They kissed deeply, hugged tightly, and brushed each other’s hair wildly.

They were jerked away from their sexy moment when the back door of the van flung open and Shawn Henry stood there wide-eyed and with healing herbs in hand. He awkwardly said, “I found the medical supplies from the castle….in case you’re interested.”

“Um…yes, uh…of course we’re interested, Shawn. Thank you,” stammered Daniel as he crawled off of Raven and snatched the leaves out of the detective’s hands. He turned back to the wounded elf and said, “These, uh…these will help you recover, and…”

“We’ve used those before, Daniel. I know how they work,” said Raven.

The Lord of the Pit shakily crawled back to Raven and began applying the healing leaves and medical acid. He tried to be as nonchalant as possible when he said to Shawn, “You can leave now. I’ve got it from here.”

“Try not to have too much fun in there,” said Shawn with a smart-ass grin as he shut the van door.

Daniel smiled himself and said, “Well, that right there is what I like to call reverse Viagra.”

“You humans and your boner pills,” giggled Raven before she clutched her ribs in pain. “Hurry up and put that stuff on me, I’m hurting like hell!”

“Yes, Princess, I mean, Queen Triscloud!”

Thursday, March 16, 2017



What do you get when you combine minimal reading experience, a massive ego, and four fantasy characters who have no earthly business being together? The answer is Raggyd, a medieval fantasy novel idea I had in 2004 when I took a creative writing class at Olympic College. As horrible as it ended up being, it was also the launching pad for my poetry skills. Ergo, if it wasn’t for Raggyd in 2004, I wouldn’t have published Confessions of a Schizophrenic Savage in 2013 nor Necrograph in 2016. I’m halfway through another book of poetry called Prophecy, so that’s in my near future.

With an underdeveloped plot, Raggyd was little more than an excuse to use four characters I really had an affinity for. There was the pit fighting barbarian Graf Lunge, the gothic samurai Eron Putris, the acrobatic thief Baby, and the witch hunter zealot Futez Mysida. Somehow these four characters were going to come together to fight a super powerful enemy named…are you ready for this…Vine Wielders. That’s his name, folks. Vine fucking Wielders. Sounds threatening, doesn’t it?

The first chapter I wrote for Raggyd was an interaction between Baby and Futez. Futez wanted Baby to join his religious organization and Baby declined by making a smart-ass remark about how the only thing Futez plans on stealing is the altar boy’s virginity. Naturally, the witch hunter was less than pleased and sicked an entire squadron of ball and chain-wielding soldiers upon his would-be charge.

As much as the class enjoyed Baby’s dig about fucking altar boys, Raggyd was a critical flop among the students. They had all criticisms for me and no compliments. Other students had compliments for their stories, but I didn’t and that put a huge dent in my massive ego. What really set me off was when a fellow student named Patrick flat out said the story sucked. You know you have a hair trigger temper when the words “it sucked” causes you to blow a major gasket. Of course, I didn’t actually explode in the classroom, but I was boiling over on the inside. I needed some kind of revenge on Patrick in the worst way. Beating the piss out of him would land me in jail, so I needed something a little more…legal.

Around this time in my life, I was watching a lot of WWE (surprise, surprise). Since this was the autumn of 2004, John Cena was still over with the crowd during his white rapper gimmick. I’ll always tell people that hip-hop was the catalyst for my poetry career, but what a lot of people don’t know is that John Cena’s battle raps were the biggest source of inspiration for me. From those TV-14 insults, my revenge poem against Patrick was formulated. I would go on a lengthy diatribe about how I would impregnate Patrick’s mother, sodomize him, and give him up to the orcish horde (because he looked like Frodo Baggins). I would have read this out loud during creative writing class, but Patrick made a face turn and started being nicer to the class, so I pulled back at the last minute.

As far as Raggyd goes, just for the sake of spiting my critics, I wrote a 130-page movie script detailing the exploits of Graf Lunge and Baby. Had I continued this series, there would have been a script dedicated to Eron and Futez and there would have been another one after that dedicated to the final battle with Vine Wielders. For the time being, Graf Lunge’s story was about him getting kidnapped at an early age and forced to train as a pit fighter under drill instructor-style conditions. Baby’s story was about him being sick of his religious upbringing and joining the thieves’ guild, where his training was much nicer by comparison.

Raggyd had a lot of potential to be something big, but I eventually lost interest in continuing it due to the silence of my critics and a growing interest in other movie scripts. That means Graf Lunge, Baby, Futez Mysida, and Eron Putris are all orphaned characters. They’ll be used in other stories, no doubt, but what stories and when? I particularly grew fond of Graf Lunge because of his name (believe it or not) and his barbarian gimmick (naturally). And now that I think about it, Baby and Eron have different incarnations in other published stories. Over a decade later, Baby would become a child’s doll come to life in “Nail Bomb” and Eron would take the role of Floyd the sparring android from “The New Trainer”. Both of those stories will be published in Poison Tongue Tales. That leaves Graf and Futez without a home.

When I look back on the origins of Raggyd and the hurtful environment from which it came, a part of me wishes Olympic College wouldn’t have allowed that format to go on for any creative writing class. Apparently, this is a common occurrence for a lot of schools, not just OC. You read your story or poem out loud to the class and stay silent while the other students judge your piece. The other students can be as harsh or as nasty as they want with no consequence. It’s always been my understanding that school was supposed to be a place where students could grow and mature, not be taken down. But hey, I’ve watched Pink Floyd the Wall millions of times before, so I should have known better.

If I didn’t attend that class, I wouldn’t have written that battle rap about Patrick and therefore, I would have no poetry career. While I admit that my angry poetry got me in trouble more than once, I have no regrets about any of it, because I’d like to think I’ve improved since then. Maybe that’s why “Confessions of a Schizophrenic Savage” holds a four-star rating on Good Reads and Necrograph holds a five-star rating on the same website.

The lesson of this blog entry is to live your life with no regrets, because if you change just one part of your personal history, the rest of your life will be completely different. Without the negative experiences of your past, you wouldn’t appreciate the positive ones you have now. Raggyd will see the light of day again sometime in the near future. When that is, I have no idea. Until then, adios, amigos! Thanks for reading!


Q: What do you call someone who masturbates to Maid Marian while watching through her window?

A: Rubbin’ Hood.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

The Media

Caught on camera, a vicious beating
Made me throw up what I was eating
Made me blow a fuse just like dynamite
Your son’s heart beats booze and cyanide
Teach your child some real lessons
Not to use hate and fear as weapons
Not to blame others for his own undoing
Not to be surprised when parents are suing

It is not the media’s fault
That your son’s an ass and he got caught

He laughs at suicide whenever it happens
Laughs at the mourners, calls them faggots
His ribs are broken from the many chuckles
His knees are shaking as they start to buckle
Let’s see him pick a fight with a true giant
Let’s see his lips quiver in the dead of silence
Let’s see his blood pressure hit the maximum
Piss a million gallons and call it going platinum

It is not the media’s fault
That your son’s an ass and he got caught

In the end, he’s nothing but a coward
He thought he wielded the ultimate power
But all he got was a golden shower
His tight jockey shorts smell a little sour
All the bravado was for absolutely nothing
All the laughter never led to something
Now he’s got a spotlight burning so bright
He’s shitting himself from the stage fright

It is not the media’s fault
That your son’s an ass and he got caught
It is not the victim’s fault
That your son’s another brick in the wall
It is not the judge’s fault
That his dad has lost his balls
Blame yourself and no one else
Blame yourself for building your own hell


It is not the media’s fault!

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Demon Axe, Chapter 16

Any dumb fuck could make the excuse that the Paulson City Police were just doing what they were told for the sake of their families. The news anchors could sanitize their sins with Lysol until the end of time. But what about those in uniform who actually bought into Roger Zee’s twisted logic? Like a certain orange politician, Roger Zee’s actions and words gave permission to commit violence in the name of the “greater good”. The corrupt cops who felt empowered by this dangerous thinking were the ones driving tanks and hummers through the elven world.

Gigantic tanks crushing innocent street dwellers underneath their bladed wheels. Cannons blasting buildings until they crumbled to the ground. Hummers with machineguns mounted on them unloading a blizzard of bullets upon elves who tried to run and hide. After hundreds of years of the elves rebuilding their homeland, it once again resembled an apocalyptic scenario. Rubble scattered all over the pavement. Broken and twisted elf corpses strewn across the road with their blood running down the sewer drains. Screams and cries of those who were barely surviving pierced the ears, but not the hearts of their human rivals. Mothers huddling with their children behind piles of broken buildings.

The war machines were tromping their way across the wreckage and bloodied bodies with the intention of storming King Arthur Triscloud’s castle. The finest of elven architecture was ready to be violated with fiery cannonballs and armor-piercing bullets the size of crowbars. As more women and children gathered around the castle to shed their tears, their sorrows were met with laughter and mockery from the cops who were itching to settle the score between man and elf.

“This is not your land!” shouted a familiar female voice, putting an end to the hyena laughter. With rows upon rows of elven soldiers with swords marching behind her, Princess Raven Triscloud pointed her own blade at her world’s attackers while giving an oratory worthy of a certain Lord’s heavy metal performance.

With muscles twitching and raw anger in her voice, Raven shouted, “Whatever fake reminiscence Roger Zee is feeding you, it will be your downfall! Up until this moment, my elven race has never been a threat to human democracy! We just wanted to live peacefully and rebuild what your people have taken down with brute force! Anybody who says otherwise is dabbling in revisionist history! Your news anchors and your politicians have built the human empire on fear! You want something to be afraid of?! I’ll give it to you! Charge!”

The elven soldiers led by Raven rushed into battle with swords and shields raised while the human forces readied their machineguns and tank cannons. They unleashed a tidal wave of bullets across the elven warriors, but the indigenous race’s oversized shields deflected the ammunition off to the sides, where they bounced off rubble piles with audible pings. The elves stayed light on their feet as they dodged and weaved out of range of the cops’ high velocity cannons.

As soon as Raven and her soldiers bolted within range, the massive slaughter became a melee between swords and batons. Elves jammed elongated blades through their opponents’ black hearts and chopped off limbs, causing the human forces to bleed buckets all over the broken city streets. Likewise, cops rained down heavy clubs across the elves’ skulls until the fantasy race’s brains were splashed off the concrete.

Raven, being the most skilled fighter of her army, ran around to various human soldiers and slashed their throats, gutted their stomachs, and chopped off heads. She was often ganged up on by three, four, or five cops at a time, but for every baton strike, she rolled and flipped out of the way. While she was on the ground, she threw a circular slash and chopped off her opponents’ feet, causing them to scream like children and cuss like sailors as they bled profusely.

And then Raven noticed out of the corner of her eye that a tank cannon was aiming right for her. “Shit!” she yelled before cart-wheeling out of range. The cannon fired and blew concrete shrapnel all over her friends, making them easier targets for baton beatings over the head and across the ribs. At the threat of another cannon blast, Raven backed up into an alleyway to avoid more shrapnel. She needed time to rethink her strategy, but her friends were dying out there. “If only there was some way to disable those tanks,” she said to herself.

“I wouldn’t count on it if I was you,” said a haunting elf voice. Raven gasped and slowly turned around to face her new opponent. Out of the shadows came Roger Zee with his machete in hand and a shit-eating grin across his ugly face. “Haven’t you gotten tired of watching your loved ones die? Daniel Mercer certainly has. So much so that I doubt he’ll want to interfere in elf politics ever again,” mocked Roger.

“You bastard!” shouted Raven before engaging the terrorist in hand-to-hand combat. The two elves clanged and banged swords with enough volume to drown out the sounds of war going on in the background. They even managed to make dents in each other’s blades, though Raven’s were much deeper and nastier than Roger’s. The terrorist went for a slash to the throat only for Raven to duck underneath and bull rush her opponent against a brick wall.

Holding the blade to Roger’s neck, Raven angrily whispered, “You are a disgrace to your people, Roger. I’m going to enjoy taking your fucking head off!” She would have if a cannon blast didn’t take a chunk out of a nearby building and rock her off balance. Roger threw a palm strike to Raven’s gut and kicked her in the face, flipping her in the air and causing her to land on her chest. She spit out blood and nursed her numb face.

Roger arrogantly whistled as he picked up his machete and danced like a fruitcake to his fallen opponent. Raven slowly made it to her hands and knees, but Roger held the blade to the back of her neck and said, “Revisionist history my ass, Raven! The only traitor to the crown I see around here is your deadbeat father!”

The insult pumped adrenaline through Raven’s system as she grabbed Roger’s feet and pulled him to the ground, making him drop his weapon. Raven took this time to stagger to her feet while Roger nipped up like an athlete. From that point it was martial arts warfare. The female warrior threw punches and kicks around the head and ribs of her opponent, all of those attacks being blocked or dodged by Roger. The zealot grabbed one of Raven’s punches and squeezed on her wrist so tightly that she crumbled to her knees. He said, “That dig about your father? That wasn’t an alternative fact. It was a hard fact!”

Raven threw another punch, but Roger caught that one as well before throwing her overhead and slamming her on her back. From there the former Order of the Spider soldier dropped repeated elbows on her chest and ribs, causing her to cough up even more blood than before. She tried throwing her legs up to back him off, but she was so weak that it resembled drunken choreography.

Roger knelt down and held his blade to Raven’s throat, to which she said, “Go ahead! Finish me off! I’d rather die than live your dystopia!”

The terrorist chuckled, “As much as I’d love to finish you off right now, there’s a war going on around us in case you hadn’t noticed.” To prove his point, another chunk of rubble flew across the battlefield, dusting Raven and Roger with large pebbles. Roger stood up, grinned, and said, “Besides, you’re not the one that I came here for. Any minute now…”

“You scoundrel!” shouted an elderly male voice. Raven’s puffy vision was able to make out the features of her father as he dashed into battle and threw wild slashes at Roger. The terrorist dodged each slash with athletic grace before kneeing the king in the stomach and hoisting Arthur on his shoulder.

“Put him down!” demanded Raven as she coughed up more blood. Her rage fell on deaf ears as Roger retreated from the bloody battle going on around them. The Princess held out her hand in a weak attempt to save her father, but after a short while of seeing his pained face, Roger took him away into the violent morning.

Tears built up in Raven’s swelling eyes, but she had no outlet for her sorrow other than beating the ground with her aching fists. She tried getting up, but the pain surged through her bones and watered her down to a crawl across the concrete. She pulled with the last of her remaining strength and then closed her eyes in defeat. The human and elven worlds belonged to Roger Zee.

Her dreams, however, belonged only to her. As the sounds of battle were dying all around her, she envisioned Daniel Mercer with his magical microphone serenading a raucous crowd. He had his skeleton makeup on and everything. He even played with his former band mates: Vulture Man on guitars, Pig Man on bass, and G-Pac on drums.

Even though Daniel was screaming angry lyrics, he seemed happy and loved in a place like this. This was his natural habitat and Roger would never be able to take that away from him no matter how much land he ruled over. Raven would have smiled at this moment, but her mouth was bloody and it hurt to do so. “Find me, Daniel,” she whispered. “Find me again.”

Movie Reviews


For the past week, I’ve been editing the shit out of Poison Tongue Tales in preparation for publishing the damn thing on Amazon. Although I only have eleven short stories left on the task list, I never realized until now how long I’ve gone without doing any serious first draft writing. Sure, I wrote a heavy metal song called “Knives to Meet You”, but that’s not really enough since writing poetry is easier for me than a chapter of a novel or a short story. I missed the last WSS contest because I’ve been so busy with PTT (and trying to get out of a sleepy haze). The “One Job” experiment is proving to be a dud. I miss writing Demon Axe chapters and short stories.

Another thing I miss writing is reviews. It’s a long time in between reading sessions of “What Hides in the Darkness” by KL Cottrell. I also haven’t seen any movies lately, which is weird because I still have a $25 Regal Cinemas gift card from Christmas last year. I could just download a movie on my computer, but judging from how my WWE Network videos have either frozen or skipped, I’m not sure any other movie-watching source will be better. I used to have a Roku, but that too skipped and froze at inopportune times and now it’s in a landfill somewhere due to it frying out. I could use my brother’s Playstation 4, but that doesn’t really belong to me, so his TV watching and videogame playing (along with Reina’s) takes priority over mine.

If I can find a way to watch movies on a regular basis to fill my time between creative projects, then reviewing them will be a new outlet for me. I’ve already written a few movie reviews here and there, whether it’s Zootopia, Ben and Me, or St. Vincent just to name a few. But this is something I could do on a regular basis as a labor of love. Sure, it’s not going to advance my writing career, but then again, why does everything I do have to be about my profession? Besides, doing these reviews will keep my writing skills sharp, which is important considering my last chapter of Demon Axe was written two weeks ago with almost nothing in between.

I’ve already come up with a short list of movies I’d like to watch and review. If you want to add anything to this list, let me know and I’ll take it into consideration. Here’s what I have so far:

  1. Copycat
  2. Crossface (NOT RELEASED YET)
  3. Cure For Wellness, A
  4. Deadpool
  5. Die Watching
  6. Fighting with My Family (NOT RELEASED YET)
  7. Flintstones X WWE: Stone Age Smackdown
  8. Ghost in the Shell
  9. Jetsons X WWE: Robo-Wrestlemania
  10. Kickboxer: Vengeance
  11. Lego Batman Movie, The
  12. Logan
  13. Manchester By the Sea
  14. Power Rangers
  15. Robin Hood (Disney)
  16. Star Wars: Rogue One
  17. Thinning, The
  18. WWE 24: Seth Rollins: Redesign, Rebuild, Reclaim

Not the world’s longest list, but that’s only because I’ve spent so long not watching movies that I don’t know what else to add. Yes, I know how ironic that is considering I minored in theater arts at WWU. It’s even more ironic that I originally wanted to major in cinema, but WWU didn’t offer that degree, so I went with English (creative writing). It’s important to remember where you came from and I was a huge cinemaphile back in the day. I wouldn’t mind getting back into the groove if it means I get to write reviews and help these movies get publicity (whether good or bad).

These reviews are still going to follow the five-paragraph formula I use with books and WWE matches. The first paragraph will be a brief synopsis (without spoilers). The next three paragraphs will be aspects I liked or disliked about the medium. The final paragraph will be a summary of those three thoughts to tie it all together. I also still plan on using the same grading system, which is…

Extra Credit: a five star review of a movie which exceeded my expectations either by changing my worldview or making me relate to it on a deep emotional level. Examples include Pink Floyd the Wall, Pulp Fiction, and The Lego Movie.

Pass: a four star review of a movie which entertained me all the way through and met my expectations with no serious flaws. This is the most common grade I give since I usually expect that I’ll like what I watch.

Mixed: a three star review of a movie which was still entertaining despite some obvious flaws. The first movie I gave a mixed grade to was Dead Man Down, which had a bullying storyline where the kids never got any comeuppance.

Fail: a two star review for a movie that had too many glaring flaws, but I finished watching anyways. An example of a failing WWE match would be Nikki Bella vs. AJ Lee at Survivor Series 2014 for the Divas Championship, which lasted less than twenty seconds and had no real emotional investment to begin with.

Did Not Finish: a one star review of a movie that was so terrible that I stopped watching it. I tried watching an NXT match between Eva Marie and Carmella, but there were so many botches and awkward moments that it hurt my brain worse than a Tombstone Piledriver on thumb tacks.

I know this labor of love will love me back, especially since I’ve been away for so long and absence makes the heart grow fonder. We’ve got ears, say cheers!


(RE: The Faces of Death documentary series.)

DAD: What do you watch that shit for?!

ME: Because it’s cool!

JAMES: Because he’s a serial killer in training.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Knives to Meet You

You look so cute when you’re on the floor
Bloodied and broken, a victim of gore
There’s only one way to end our little war
Slash and stab your ass a little bit more

Knives to meet you! X3

My blade reminds me of an Otter Pop
Licking it clean, never missing a drop
How can something so goddamn bad
Taste so good it drives me bat shit mad
You’re damn right I’m sick and I love it
Take the edge of my knife and stuff it
Right into your most delicate places
If these are your holes, I’ve got the aces

Knives to meet you! X3

A serial killer and a blood spiller
Intoxicates me like a bottle of Miller
Gets me high like a needle full of drugs
Gets me horny when you’re covered in bugs
This is my idea of black comedy
This is my idea of peace and harmony
The silence of the lambs is new age music
Goddamn, it feels so good to just lose it

Knives to meet you!
Fight and defeat you!
Slash and beat you!
Carve and eat you!
Until we meet again!
In the world of death!
Knives to know you!
Knives to own you!

Don’t worry, my love, it’s all a punch line
Drink in the humor like a bottle of wine
Put your feet up and enjoy the show

It’s all you can do in a hellfire glow