The hood was life. We ate it, slept it, sucked it in like air, but that ain’t leave too much time for nuthin’ else. Hell, me and Ricardo ain’t even know there was no big world out there til we was twelve, and then what good it do us? Ricardo always talkin’ ‘bout movin’ on up, but we ain’t got no ladder, no stairs, not even no step stool cuz Bubba Jones took it last Tuesday and momma said we ain’t gettin’ it back.
“Y’all don’t got no prospect, ‘cept what the hood give y’all,” Seph Mason told me and Ricardo that summer we both grew in our wisdom teeth.
“Momma say sky’s the limit,” Ricardo told Seph. Seph backhanded him upside the head. Ricardo’s ratty Phillies cap flew off.
“Yo momma don’t know no better,” Seph said. “She always smokin’ that crack, make you have them delusions and shit. She wudn’t ever no good.”
Which is what everybody say about Ricardo’s momma, but I stay out of it. ‘Sides, we was gonna get a taste of that Jefferson movement ‘cuz our school got a field trip downtown next week.
“How you think they build them big buildings and stuff?” I asked Seph. He got out his crack pipe and lit up before he got to respondin’.
“They use slave labor, same as always,” Seph said, looking me and Ricardo in the eyes. His was bloodshot. Continue reading “Pipe Dreams”
I’m almost halfway home in National Novel Writing Month, and more than 2/3rds of the way through my goal of 50,000 words. It’s fascinating to me that I can stay on course like this for so many consecutive days, even though this month hasn’t been the easiest one for finding time. Often I find myself … Continue reading A Fitting Sequel
I’m sitting here at my desk with a cup of coffee to hand, thinking up fantastic stories that will hopefully come to fruition in the next 30 days. It’s dark outside and I feel like utter crap, but my brain won’t shut down for the night. That’s because November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), … Continue reading Begin the Begin
It’s the last day of November, which means I’m down to the end of the novel I’ve spent the last 30 days creating on fast forward. During the course of this month I’ve gone through the highs and lows of novel writing — the weights and balances that make the process of writing so dynamic, … Continue reading Faded
Four years ago I decided I was going to just go for it. I decided I was going to try my hand at the challenge of writing 50,000 words in 30 days. I had tiptoed around it for years, doing the complicated dance of feinting like I was going to do it, and then backing … Continue reading The First November
Writing is not a sedentary enterprise because my brain is always working overtime to keep up with everything that’s going on in the story, like I’m spinning plates. The characters become my friends sooner rather than later, sometimes poking me in the arm by page 3, ready to drive their own storylines and hoping I … Continue reading The Process | Part 3