Apr 04 2010

Brett’s Review Forum

Published by at 1:08 pm under Review Forums

Please see the comments below.  Thanks!

61 responses so far

61 Responses to “Brett’s Review Forum”

  1. bretton 12 Apr 2010 at 7:40 pm

    Hi everybody! Just so all of you know this is NOT a superhero story. I like to think of it as “Hawaii five-0 in space” The main character is physically disabled but you’ll understand more as you read the story.
    Enjoy!

  2. bretton 03 May 2010 at 9:09 pm

    Hey guys, sorry it took so long, school was horrible. I had some time to work on it so hears what I came up with. It’s a WORK IN PROGRESS so be kind!!

  3. bretton 03 May 2010 at 9:09 pm

    CHAPTER ONE
    “Brett, you’re going to be late”
    “Could you scream any louder?”
    He wobbled down the wooden stairs as he fiddled with his back pack, trying to get it over his shoulders. Just as he succeeded, his foot scuffed the edge of the next step and he tumbled down the stairs.
    Brett canted his head upwards. His mom hovered over him, but not because she was worried. She looked at him expectantly.
    “Oh, don’t worry mom, I’m fine,” Brett muttered sarcastically as he hoisted himself up.
    “I do worry,” she said, “all the time.
    Brett straightened out his grey leather jacket. “Yeah, I’m sure.”
    “Brett, I’m your mother so I get to worry about whether you have cerebral palsy or not.
    “Let me explain something to you, just in case raising for the last 15 years hasn’t made it clear,” Brett said in a condescending tone. “I have a disability, it’s called cerebral Palsy, CP for short, ok? All it means is that the brain does not send the correct messages to the rest of my body, that’s why I walk with a gimp.”
    “Brett, you were barely able to get yourself up when you fell just now, let alone last week…”
    Brett’s mom took him shopping a week ago. She held up two shirts: One was black with red stripe across the top, while the other was a red and white checkerboard shirt.
    “What do you think?”
    He shrugged, “Whatever…”
    She scowled and alked away. Out of the corner of his eye he saw a plain blue shirt hanging by itself on a rack.
    He was about to go tell his mom, when a man caught his eye. He had an overgrown beard and long blonde hair. Brett must have been staring too long because the man caught his gaze and darted for the door.
    Without thinking, Brett chased after him.
    “Wait!” he called.
    As usual his legs got the best of him and he fell.
    Brett, Brett, are you listening.
    “What? Oh yeah, look I got right back up.”
    “but-“
    “Look, having a disability doesn’t mean I can’t do the things that everyone else can, it just means I have to do it differently”
    With that, he wobbled to the door, opened it and wobbled out.

  4. bretton 03 May 2010 at 9:11 pm

    By the way I took a page from James patterson and wrote with short 2-4 page chapters

  5. Ragged Boyon 03 May 2010 at 10:00 pm

    Hello Brett!
    Here’s what I think:

    – I’ll be frank, this was a bit dull. You established that the character is a semi-badass disabled fellow who refuses to be helped. However, the problem was that your execution is a bit straight-forward which isn’t necessarily bad, but I think implication is stronger than exposition. You could try having the character in a situation in which he has to run in front of people like a P.E. class and he embarasses himself then when they try to help him he shrugges them off and wobbles away. The more you can express without actually saying or explain, the better.

    – I don’t really understand the shopping tangent. Could you explain what happened there?

    – I’d recommend putting more details into action in general, body language, character through action, sensory details, internal thought, scenery, etc. I didn’t find this passage particularly immersive because there was nothing but the characters talking. Going along with my P.E. idea, I would have him grasping his knees while he waits, but when he walks to position he tries to walk properly to look cool.

    – I think a chapter should do more to advance the story. In this chapter the story moves virtually nowhere. There’s no foreshadowing, no urgent goal, and only a little character development. I’d recommend giving Brett a goal to accomplish something urgent, but not too high stakes.

    – I’m not sure if that just WordPress, but I’d recommend formatting your dialogue separate from the paragraphs with line breaks.

    What do you think?

  6. bretton 04 May 2010 at 8:24 am

    Thanks ragged boy, when they are shopping he sees the guy with bushy beard and he’s one of the ‘henchmen’ so to speak, but that comes later. I wanted to start with him and the main villan sending for brett but I thought it’d too confusing.

  7. B. Macon 04 May 2010 at 8:49 am

    There are mechanical issues. For example, there should be a period after “late” in the first sentence and “back pack” should be one word. There are also some missing words, missing commas, etc.

    I think you could show more and tell less. Please see this article for more details on what I mean by that. Here are some examples where I think you could imply/show what the character means rather than have him narrate what he thinks.
    –“…but not because she was worried.”
    –““I do worry,” she said, “all the time.”
    –“Look, having a disability doesn’t mean I can’t do the things that everyone else can, it just means I have to do it differently”–> how does he get up differently? If I were lying on the ground, like most healthy people, I’d just sit up and then put enough weight on my feet to lift my body up. One or two seconds. I imagine it would be a more complicated process for him and I think that it’d be an effective way of showing some of the problems he has to live with. (Speaking as a relative of someone in intensive physical therapy, I have some idea).

    Although he’s sort of a jerk, I can relate to that early teen surliness. The detail about the mother trying to pick out his shirts was effective. That was a strong way to show that she was too intrusive.

    I feel that the CP is introduced kind of awkwardly. At the very least, I would recommend using a better transition so that it makes more sense for the mother to introduce the CP when she does. However, I think that it’d probably be more stylish (though more difficult) would be to start the piece with an unusual sentence about something like the protagonist, his struggles with CP, or his take on living with CP, or something like that. The reason that I say this is difficult is because this first sentence needs to actually make the character sound unique. For example, one sort-of-fresh aspect about this character that comes to mind is that he chafes at his mother for being too nice/involved. (Usually, when a character wants to escape from his parents, it’s because they’re abusive and/or neglectful).

    ““Let me explain something to you, just in case raising for the last 15 years hasn’t made it clear,” Brett said in a condescending tone. “I have a disability, it’s called cerebral Palsy, CP for short, ok? All it means is that the brain does not send the correct messages to the rest of my body, that’s why I walk with a gimp.” This strikes me as an info-dump. It doesn’t sound like how real people talk, I think. You could shorten this to something like “In case you haven’t noticed, I’m a gimp–not a cripple.” I don’t think we need the neurological reason his body doesn’t work right, but if you wanted to provide that, I think it’d make more sense for him to explain his situation later on to an alien or teammate that is new to CP. (I assume his mother is already briefed on the situation, so this is an “as you know, Bob” moment—generally it’s best to avoid explaining to a character what he/she already knows).

    I’d like to slightly disagree with RB about whether the story goes somewhere. Physically, it’s moving slowly. (Something like 350 words to get the character from the stairs to the door). But, dramatically speaking, I think it’s an okay introduction of the character and his family situation. In terms of foreshadowing, I think the man spying him through the window is okay, but we don’t know anything about him besides his beard and hair color. Those probably aren’t the most interesting visual details about him.

  8. Ragged Boyon 04 May 2010 at 12:47 pm

    Oh, silly me. I read the sentence with the man, but I must not have comprehended. Sorry about that.

  9. bretton 05 May 2010 at 8:02 pm

    CHAPTER TWO
    Brett ran after the bus.
    “They’re supposed to wait for me.” He thought to himself.
    After feebly attempting to catch up to the bus, someone on the vehicle and finally stopped. Brett stopped in front of the doors out of breath. They slid open and an African American women stepped out to help him.
    As she reached for his backpack, Brett said, I can do it, and climbed the stairs. Brett strode through the walkway towards his seat. On each side of him, there were two rows of brown leather seats. Only one of them currently had a passanger.
    He had shaggy black hair dressed in all black, and had very tan skin. Music emanated from ear phones he had on. He took a seat across from him and the van attendant tried the buckle his seat belt. “I got it,” Brett said doing so hastily. The Van attendant nodded and sat in front of him.
    “Hey Dante.” Brett called to the boy
    No answer.
    Dante..
    Still no answer.
    Finally, the van attendant reach over and tapped him on the knee.
    Suddenly, Dante ripped his ear phones off.
    “What to do want?” He said to the van attendant.
    She pointed at Brett.
    Dante shot him a dirty look.
    “What to do you want cripple?”
    Brett raised his eyebrow.
    “Seriously?”
    “The difference between you and me is that me,” he said now tapping his now-visible prothetic leg, “is that I literally do not have a leg to stand on and yet you have two and you still fall more times than I do any given day. That’s what makes you crippled.
    Brett sighed “Honestly Dante, I thought you and I gave the short bus a good reputation.
    “What are you talking about?”
    “That was the most retarded you’ve ever said, and you,” Brett said with a small laugh, was the most retarded thing you’ve ever said.”
    You know it’s true
    Whatever helps you sleep at night.
    What makes you think you are any better than me
    Brett looked away from him and scowled. “I am not going to dignify that with a response.”
    “Why not, am I supposed to know the answer?”
    No, Dante, said Brett, turning his whole body around. I don’t know why you feel the need to let me know how I’m supposedly so much worse off than you are, we’re the same, equals.”
    “You have no idea.”
    Before Dante, could say another word, the bus driver yelled, “we’re here.”
    As Dante got up, he gave Brett a little smirk, then he began to make his way towards the stairs. As he was going down, he lost his footing.
    There was a group of students outside the yellow and white school building and they began to laugh.
    “Hey guys, look at Metallo.” Said one. That made their uproarious laughter even worse. Brett never laughed when Dante fell. For some strnge reason , He respected him, he seemed to get it on some level.
    The Van attendant tried to help dante up but he wouldn’t let her. The laughing stopped when Brett got off the bus, it always did.

  10. bretton 05 May 2010 at 8:08 pm

    There are some mistakes, but I’m more concerned with the story as a whole right now. I keep hearing how you should just the story down and go fix things later. Also I’m considering going back to my original plan and put all the earth stuff into a prologue. Originally, it was a six page prologue and then we jump into the story, but I thought I would take a page from ultimate spiderman and use decompression I know it’s not the same thing, but I thought it was a good way to spend time with the hero before he goes off on his journey

  11. Ragged Boyon 06 May 2010 at 6:47 pm

    – I think this chapter is okay. There’s nothing too exciting to look forward to while reading it, though. I’d recommend adding more competition between Dante and Brett to add more tension. If Brett has to prove that he is equal to Dante that would reflect well on his resolve.

    – I like your idea of decompression, however if you plan on fully (or at least partially) introducing Brett before the action I’d recommend doing this more quickly. Although, we are learning his character here it slow-going. I’d recommend adding more inciting events and/or odd situations for Brett than shopping and riding the bus to school (I think the shopping scene is okay because it was an important plot event). Odd situation are particularly good for developing your character’s personality by forcing them to think on their toes in a, usually, stylish way.

    – I know you’re not focusing on the mechanics at this point, but I’d recommend editing these sentences for clarity.

    “After feebly attempting to catch up to the bus, someone on the vehicle and finally stopped.”
    – I think you forgot some words, how about: After feebly attempting to catch up to the bus someone riding saw him and signaled the driver to stop.”

    “‘That was the most retarded you’ve ever said, and you,’ Brett said with a small laugh, was the most retarded thing you’ve ever said.”
    – I think you meant to delete the additional part or maybe you had the sentence written one way and changed it to another.

    – I’d recommend adding tags at the end of the dialogue so that readers won’t get confused about whose speaking. Also, don’t forget your quotation marks.

    – Again I’d place more emphasis on body language, character through action, sensory details, internal thought, scenery, etc. I still feel that your writing is not immersing us in the scene.Currently, the characters tend to go into a vacuum where nothing exists but the characters speaking. I’d also recommend adding more descriptive language to help making your writing more stylish.

    For example “The school bus was alway precisely on time… except for today. Today, Scary Mary, the short bus driver was slamming on the gas. The shuttle whizzed past Brett as he was making his way to the bus stop. He twisted his face (or ‘checked his watch’ if he is more perceptive) and blinked at the odd occurence before the realization finally hit him and burst into a jagged sprint after.” is longer than “Brett ran after the bus” but I think it works more in term of style and is less jarring.

    – I’d recommend changing ‘van attendent’ to ‘bus attendent’. It could be jarring for some readers if they think the vehicle switched from a bus to a van.

    – I find it odd that the student jeer Dante for his disability directly. I understand it’s meant to be a what goes around, comes around schtick, but the execution reflects strongly on the students. Although, it’s common for students to laugh at people who fall it’s oddly mean to make fun of someone who lost a leg. Was this intentional? Why do they stop laughing when Brett gets off?

    What do you think?

  12. bretton 08 May 2010 at 8:20 pm

    Thanks for not taking everything at face value, ragged boy. A lot of people I show it too don’t get it or think that it sucks. to answer your last question, Dante’s an ass, pardon my language, and Brett always tries to be good to people as you’ll find out in chapter three. In all the drafts I’ve done, my first chapters are terrible, but I hit my stride around page 10 or so

  13. B. Macon 08 May 2010 at 9:23 pm

    “Brett said, I can do it, and climbed the stairs.” Rather than having him tell himself he can do it, I think it would be more effective to give a physical detail to show us that getting himself up the stairs is an exertion.

    I suspect this isn’t intentional, but I find Dante more likable than Brett. Brett’s sermonizing really puts me off. I’d recommend reading (or re-reading) works like Flowers for Algernon that have handicapped narrators and/or POVs to see how this can be done, I think, more artfully. For example, Charlie, the main character of FFA, doesn’t talk much about the plight of mentally challenged people generally or how mentally handicapped people should be treated, but he’s really easy to empathize with anyway. The moral of the story doesn’t need to be so obvious, you know? It’s a slippery slope to Birdemic.

    Also, Dante is a well-developed character so far. It’s definitely unexpected that the person most antagonistic to Dante so far is himself physically impaired. I think that gives him quite a bit of moral depth/complexity. I’m not getting that impression from Brett.

    Quick question on realism. Do kids with CP typically ride the bus with other kids? At my school district, at least, there’s a special van for kids with physical challenges.

  14. Miss Mynaon 09 May 2010 at 5:05 am

    Just to hop in– I’ve been lurking and reading almost ALL the review forums as of late XD– I think Brett and Dante were already on the special van, B.mac. S’why it’s mentioned as a van a couple times in the chapter, instead of just a bus, and why Brett says “Honestly Dante, I thought you and I gave the short bus a good reputation.” The ‘short bus’ is the special van. In my school district they have the same system, so yeah. 😀 Just wanted to point that out to avoid confusion ^.^

    Although if I got that wrong, Brett, feel free to whack me or something.

    Happy Mothers Day to everyone btw! 😀

  15. B. Macon 09 May 2010 at 11:11 am

    Ah, okay. That makes sense.

  16. bretton 09 May 2010 at 12:47 pm

    Yeah, I put the short bus comment in there to sort of let everyone know that I know what the conceptions about being disabled are but here’s how it really is. some are mad at the world because they’re disabled, some are very doe eyed and upbeat about it. some are inbetween, and unfortunately for those who are mentally disabled they may not even realize something is off.
    To answer question b mac, it depends. Intially, my friend rode the regular school bus but as his disability got worse he had to ride the van.
    Honestly, I’ve written this chapter literally ten times and this is by far my worst effort. I want to rewrite once the bulk of the story is written. B.mac I think you’ll enjoy the changes I have made from what u read perviously.

  17. bretton 09 May 2010 at 12:50 pm

    @miss myna
    No need for whacking u r correct lol b.mac the story about my friend was the answer to your question, in case that wasn’t clear

  18. bretton 09 May 2010 at 12:53 pm

    oh b.mac I forgot, Brett said I can do it to the attendant, not to himself. sorry for not being clear

  19. bretton 23 May 2010 at 8:42 pm

    Hey everyone, I’m posting the next two chapters, but wanted to discuss some of the terminology. I’m pretty sure people can infer from reading it, but just in case, it’s not clear
    Earthmite- used as an insult for people who were born on earth

  20. bretton 23 May 2010 at 8:44 pm

    CHAPTER THREE
    Some days Brett felt like moses. This was one of those days. The crowd parted as Brett walked towards the large green doors.
    “Hey Bud.” Said one. Brett waved and continued on. As much as he hated appeasement, Brett figured he should always put on a different face at school then he did at home, so he didn’t end up like Dante.
    Dante, who had since gotten to his feet scowled, and charged towards the door. He ripped it open and stormed through.
    One student cupped his hands around his mouth and shouted after him, “Nice one, Metallo.”
    The second Brett walked through the door, the crowd once again converged and was alight with conversation.
    Suddenly, a man in a blue dress shirt and black dress pants walked by.
    “Hello Mr. Regan.” Brett said in as polite a tone as he could muster.
    Mr. Regan walked towards him and craned his neck so he could see out the door.
    “Why aren’t you outside with the others?” Brett hated when any of his teachers would ask him that question. He would always find an excuse as to why he wasn’t with others.Despite the fact no one was allowed inside the school until the bell rang, but Brett would always figure a way out of it. Between the argument with his mom and Dante, he was in no mood for a bunch of “Hey bud”s. He had a lot of excuses up his sleeve, a teacher would want to see him, his knee hurts(since all the teachers knew he had CP, it was easier for him to get away with going inside so he can sit down and rest), this time though he went with his favorite.
    “I need to pee.” He lied.
    Mr. Regan sighed. “Alright, but I need to talk to you about something first.
    “Aw come on!”
    “Hey, everybody else has to hold it for ten more minutes, the least you can o is listen to me for two.”
    “Fine.”
    “I spoke to your father last night.”
    Brett rolled his eyes. His father cared,but only when it was conviennient for him. Sure, they’d go to baseball games and the like, once in a while, but he would never take him to the doctor, or more specifically worried about his math.
    He wanted to tell Mr. Regan this, but he thought better of it.
    Just last week, his father wanted to take him to see his grandparents. As usual he fouled up and failed to let Brett’s mom know ahead of time and she had other plans for him.
    “I wanted to him tonight!” shouted Brett’s dad.
    “Well, I had plans to take him to math tutoring.
    “I don’t-“
    Suddenly, his cell phone began to ring.
    “What-Hello, okay.”
    He gave Brett’s mom the middle finger and walked out.
    “I’ll do better, Can I pee now?” Brett said in an annoyed tone.
    “Look Brett,” said Mr.Regan, putting his hand on his shoulder. “Your parents and I are doing all we can to make sure you a firm foundation in math, and I’m sure your parents are helping you in other areas.
    Brett brushed his hand away. You obviously don’t know my parents then.”
    As Brett walked away he thought to himself “Great, now I really have to pee
    “I don’t need help from anybody.” Brett said aloud as he stood in front of the urinal. Suddenly, an arm wrapped around his chest and a hand with a white hankerchief covered his mouth. Before everything went dark, he heard a voice say, “Oh yes you do.”

  21. bretton 23 May 2010 at 8:46 pm

    CHAPTER FOUR
    A day later, Dante was walking through a deserted street. On the surface, it looked like any other cornor of a bustling metropolis. People would from street to the other, waiting for the cars to pass, but then when it was time to stop. The hologram hovering overhead would rearrange itself to look like any other red and white octagonal sign one would see on a street cornor.
    Dante crossed the street and made a left gone were the pristine buildings of the street before. In it’s place, there was a rundown wooden shack. A hologram read “El Gato negro” but the ro was missing.
    As Dante walked in, people turned to look and then went back to their respective card games, drinking and fornicating.
    Dante looked across the way and saw the man with bushy beard sittng on a bar stool. Dante walked to the bar and sat next to him, but they did not acknowledge each other let alone look.
    “Well,” Dante said without averting his gaze from the assortment of liquors lining shelves behind the bar.
    “There was a complication.”
    “Elaborate.”
    “We lost him.”
    Dante squeezed his glass so hard, it shattered, blood began dripping down his hand.
    “How?” Dante said hoarsely
    “I guess that chloroform you gave us wasn’t advanced enough to knock him out completely, because he woke up aboard the ship. We drifted into the atmosphere of another planet while I was trying to get control of this situation. and he ended opening the hatch and sliding out. I tried to catch him, but I couldn’t reach him in time. You would think that cause the guy could barely walk straight it’d be easy.
    That means nothing Did you go back for him?”
    We were ten thousand feet in the air, there was no way he could have survived that.”
    “That’s not what I asked you.”
    He rolled his eyes and took another sip.
    Dante grabbed the glass and slammed it on the table.
    “They say we’re supposed to merely be influenced by earth cultures and ideaologies and yet you’re than any earthmite criminal I know.
    Don’t forget Dante you are still one of them.
    Dante was fuming. His eyes locked on the man’s, he leaned in closer. “You said ‘we’ before, who was with you?”
    If I were you, I wouldn’t be so worried about the aftermath of this little escapade, I’d be worried about what the boss was gonna say.
    Dante slammed his head on the bar counter and tucked the man’s right arm on the small of his back.
    “Who was working with you?”
    “I dunno… He….wouldn’t give me his name… He jacked a ship and took off when we got back from Canabia…
    “THAT’S the planet where you lost him?!”
    “Uh…huh…”
    Dante took a deep breath and leaned down to whisper in his ear”Regarding your idea about telling the boss, unless you want to tell him that our plans may have just hit a brickwall, I wouldn’t.
    Dante let him up. As the man with the bushy beard tried to catch his breath, Dante noticed a yellow pigment leaking through the bruise he had just given him and smiled.
    Once an earthmite, always an earthmite.”Dante kicked him in the leg.
    Yeowwww!!
    “See you around.” said Dante as he walked out of the bar.

  22. bretton 23 May 2010 at 8:56 pm

    I feel like chapter three is kinda choppy. it was boring for me to write despite the fact that a very important theme takes root
    Also, after eight pages I feel like I’ve done all I can do on earth. Do you think I’ve at least conveyed that there’s something to the protagonist despite his lack of likability, to at least see where he goes at this stage?
    Obviously, this isn’t the final draft, but I believe Brett and Dante are strong enough characters that they’ll be able to carry a novel in the future.

  23. bretton 23 May 2010 at 8:59 pm

    Also does anybody have any thoughts on me possibly putting all the earth material into a prologue and start chapter one in space? I’ll try to post chapter five tomorrow

  24. B. Macon 24 May 2010 at 1:31 pm

    Here are some thoughts on chapter 3…

    –Thinking in terms of drama, it would probably help to give Brett more depth… maybe a deeper personality or something—he comes across as a bit one-dimensional so far. I’d recommend maybe rereading what you did with Dante in the previous chapter: he made a brief appearance but still established himself as a somewhat compelling character.

    –With Brett, I don’t get the impression there’s much under the surface. He (or the narrator) tells us what he’s feeling. Like “as much as he hated appeasement”—can’t you show us that this move makes him uncomfortable? (For example, with body language?) Instead of telling us that lying his way into the school early is a routine for him, can’t you imply that he’s experienced at this sort of thing? (For example, maybe he takes care of an objection from the teacher in an unusually smooth or savvy manner, or moves from one lie to the next with remarkable ease). In general, I think it’s stronger writing for the writer to give the evidence (such as the character being really smooth at something) and then let the reader make the conclusion (that he’s quite experienced at this), rather than just straight up telling the reader the conclusion. It keeps the reader more mentally involved.

    –As before, there are some capitalization/grammar/punctuation issues. The spelling is pretty clean.

    –I’m having trouble visualizing why Mr. Regan lets Dante through without any trouble but not Brett. It might help to create more of an impression of time passing, so that it doesn’t feel like Brett follows right behind Dante. (If the reader perceives a significant gap between Dante going through the door and Brett going through the door, it’ll be more intuitive that Regan misses Dante but sees Brett).

    –“His father cared, but only when it was convenient for him.” Please show/imply more and tell/narrate less. Also, the fact that his father speaks to Regan implies the opposite of what Brett thinks it does, I think—if he’s just there to do fun things like go to baseball games with his son, why bother talking to the teacher?

    –“As usual he fouled up and failed to let Brett’s mom know ahead of time and she had other plans for him.” Hmm. I’d recommend being a bit more consistent here. Earlier, he says the issue with his father is that his father only cares when it’s convenient. Here, the issue changes to one of reliability/responsibility. I’d recommend being more consistent. For example, if he’s a sort of lazy guy that only does fathering work when it’s convenient/pleasant for him, maybe the plan with his grandparents falls through because his dad doesn’t want to blow his schedule to drive Brett there.

    –“I wanted to him tonight!” –> I think there’s a verb missing here.

    –“He wanted to tell Regan this, but he thought better of it.” Maybe you could imply why? I’m sort of having some trouble understanding his reasoning. If he understands there’s a problem going on with his dad, why not mention it?

    –I think Brett rolling his eyes when Regan mentions he spoke with Brett’s father is an effective way of showing/implying what Brett thinks of his father. Good use of body language.

    –“I don’t need help from anybody.” This strikes me as pretty cliché. And telling vs. showing. At the very least, I think something angry like “get lost” or “I’m outta here” would show a bit more spark.

  25. bretton 24 May 2010 at 5:52 pm

    In the last sentence of chapter three brett is getting kidnapped, so I felt for him to say I don’t help from anybody only seconds before he gets kidnapped, which is by extension when he needs help the most was sort of ironic. He had NO idea what was happening so for him to say get lost or I’m outta here would be a continuity error.
    I agree with everything else though, b.mac. thanks for taking the time to read it. What are your thoughts on Chapter four?

  26. B. Macon 25 May 2010 at 5:41 am

    Oh, okay. I thought he said “I don’t need help from anybody” to Regan as he was leaving. (Either way, though, he’s still expositioning his feelings). I will do chapter 4 today.

  27. B. Macon 25 May 2010 at 7:50 am

    Chapter 4

    –The switch from Brett to Dante strikes me as a bit disorienting.

    –The word “cornor” should be corner. I’d recommend double-checking the grammar and punctuation, too.

    –I think you could give the metropolis more of a personality. For one thing, “it looked like any other corner of a bustling metropolis” feels off to me because bustling metropolises don’t always look alike—i.e. Gary, Detroit, and Gotham City are drastically more dirty and crime-ridden than New York, Montreal, and Metropolis. I think that including a few details and getting a bit more specific would make the city more memorable.

    –For the first page or so, I’m not sure whether Dante is walking through a human city or an alien one. The hologram seems out of place in a human city. But other than that, there’s no indication that this is an alien city. (In fact, since Dante is the point-of-view here, I’d recommend pointing out anything he knows about where he is if he’s in an alien city).

    –I don’t know what your target audience is, but I sort of get the impression you’re somewhere in YA. I’m not too familiar with that market, but I think the fornication might raise some eyebrows. (On the other hand, I suspect the YA market is more free-wheeling than it was a few decades ago).

    –It appears that Dante is talking to the assortment of liquors behind the bar but I don’t think we’re ever introduced to the guy he’s talking to. I don’t think it’s true to his point-of-view not to describe who he’s talking to.

    –This chapter feels coy. The characters are trying their best to hide from the readers what the plan is, but it doesn’t feel natural to me. If you go with Dante as a POV, I think that it would probably help to reveal more. If you’re not ready to do so, I would recommend against Dante as a POV. (Really, I think the main thing he adds as a POV is that he probably knows more about what is going on than Brett, so it’s sort of counterproductive if he’s coy). Some of the costs of going with Dante here rather than just staying with Brett include… 1) We lose Brett at the time he starts to do interesting things, like discovering he’s on an alien planet and jumping out of a spaceship and 2) When Brett finally does realize that Dante is in on this, I don’t think the surprise will be as dramatic since the readers will know that already.

    –I’d recommend working more on ending this chapter with a cliffhanger. For more details, please see this.

  28. bretton 25 May 2010 at 10:50 am

    CHAPTER FIVE
    “He’s waking up,” Brett heard a faraway voice say.
    Brett groaned, he heard a clicking sound. Suddenly, he felt a tingling sensation course through his body and he abruptly sat up.
    “Easy now.” Said a man in a brownish gold suit with rumpled dirty blonde hair.
    “What am I, a horse?”
    “Is that some kind of slang you kids are using these days?” said the man as he walked to a metal table across the room. He put the silver pen-like object on the table and walked back to Brett.
    “How are you feeling?” asked the man.
    “Ok, I guess,” He looked over at the pen-like object on the table.
    Seemingly knowing, what he was looking at the man said. “You needn’t concern yourself with that.
    “What is that thing?”
    “Do you feel up to answering some questions.
    “Like what?” said Brett as he swung his legs around the edge of the metal slab he was laying on. “Ahhh!”
    The man put a hand on his naked shoulder. “That may not be the best idea.”
    “Ya think?”
    “Can you tell me what happened to you?”
    “One minute, I was taking a leak, the next, I’m…
    The man raised his eyebrow. “What is it?”
    Brett shook his head. “Nothing, probably some bad dream.”
    “Try me.”
    “Well, the next thing I remember, I was on…”
    “Yeah,”
    “a spaceship.”
    Did you see the people piloting it?”
    You’re talking like you’re not surprised said Brett, bewildered.
    “Answer my question.
    I saw the guy who came after me he was a guy with a bushy beard-“
    The man’s eyes went wide. He began foraging though his pocket and pulled out a folded piece of paper. He unfolded it and handed it to Brett-it was a picture of a man with the bushy beard.
    “I must still dreaming, Brett said without looking up from the picture.
    “Do you know this man.”
    As I was about to say before you interrupted me, I saw him looking at me when I went shopping with my mom last week- Speaking oof whom, I really need to get home,my mom’s narcotic as it is, and I never go out so-
    Wait-Wait, are you saying he was on earth.
    Brett chuckled. Yes, we are all on earth. He replied emphatically.
    The man sighed, he rubbed his temples
    No, I mean- Did you see him at the mall
    Yes
    Are you sure
    Yes, I’m sure.
    The man took a deep breath.
    Look, can I home now?”
    You can’t leave.
    What are you talking about, I have to get home, my mom’ll-
    Your mom will be safer if you stay here.
    Are you threatening to-
    No, of course not, but you were bought into space for a reason and-“
    Brett began pinching himself,
    “What are you doing?”
    “I’m trying to wake up.” Said Brett
    The man pinched him
    “ow! Said Brett, rubbing the spot which was now red. “What you do that for?”
    “This isn’t a dream. My name is Alec Rodriguez and I’m a detective of the intergalactic police corps.
    Brett got up and began walking around, trying to process this information.
    “Look, I know this is hard to believe, I’m human too, and the first time I- As Brett wobbled forward, Alec put his hand on his stomach.
    Slow down, you should have healed by now, let me go get the helix.
    “Is that what that pen-thing is called?”
    “Yeah,” said Alec going back to the metal it usually heals the injured back to perfect health, I’m not sure Why it’s not working for you.”
    “Look, I’ve never needed help before and I don’t now, so I’d really appreciate it if you’d take your hand away from my stomach. Alec put his hands up as if he were about to be arrested.
    “Have it your way.”
    As he watched Brett continue on, a look of astonishment appeared on Alec’s face.
    “You have cerebral palsy don’t you,”
    “Yeah, How’d you know?”
    “My little brother had CP, he used to walk like that too, and the attitude was a dead giveaway”
    “Used to, do you mean they made it so that the CP didn’t affect him anymore, can they do that for me?”
    Before Alec could answer, the big metal doors opened at the other end of the room. What appeared to be a man with pasty white skin. Combed over dark hair and a green jacket stood in the doorway.
    “I have to talk to you,” he said.
    Alec turned to him. “Anything you have to say, you can say in front of our guest.”
    The man stepped forward cautiously. Alec turned back to Brett.
    “You know, throughout our conversation, I never got your name,”
    “Brett, Brett Aldmen”
    Alec turned back to the man.
    Garret, meet the guy whose going to help us bring Willis- “ He turned back to brett. “Bushy Beard’ Kramer and company, down.”

  29. B. Macon 25 May 2010 at 1:01 pm

    –“a man in a brownish gold suit with rumpled dirty blonde hair.” I think this could be more effective—could you show us something else about this character than the colors? While I think the unusual color of the suit helps establish the character as unusual/strange, I think that the hair could probably use some work. (Rumpled works, I think, but why does it matter that it’s dirty-blonde instead of red or brown? What are you trying to show?) In general, I think your visualizations could maybe get away from colors a bit more and focus on interesting visual details. In chapter 1, “[the mysterious guy at the window] had an overgrown beard and long blonde hair.” In chapter 3, Regan is introduced with “a man in a blue dress shirt and black dress pants walked by.”

    –Also, this is sort of a dumbass question, but I’ll ask it out anyway: when you say he’s wearing a suit, you mean a business suit and not a golden powersuit, right? Normally, I’d assume it’s a business-suit, but here I’m having trouble being completely confident because 1) a metallic color is far more common for powersuits than business suits, 2) this is the first time I’ve seen the character, so I don’t know if a powersuit is typical for him and 3) this is a sci-fi story that looks to be going in a superhero-ish direction and later on we learn he’s a space cop.

    –“Do you feel up to answering some questions?” Normally, I’d say that this is a nicety, especially on top of the redundant “How are you feeling?”, but here I feel it’s an effective way to develop the gentleness of the character.

    “He’s waking up.” Who says that, to whom? I got the impression that the only two people here are the man in the suit and Brett. So who would the suited man be talking to? If the man in the suit is talking to himself when he says “he’s waking up,” I think something like “finally” or “you’re finally awake” might feel more natural.

    –I think it might help to work more nonverbals into the dialogue. For example, the passage starting with “nothing, probably some bad dream” and ending with “I saw the guy who came after me…” is nine straight lines of dialogue. The body language is okay, if a bit simple (mostly facial expressions and common gestures rather than, say, prop-use), but I think you could probably do more with the scenery. I think it would help to give the room and probably the man a stronger emotional vibe. For example, are we supposed to find the room… scary? Inviting? Medical? Besides the slab Brett is lying on and the silver pen and the metal table, what is in the room? What’s the lighting like?

    If Brett remembers he was on a spaceship, you might want to rephrase “Wait-Wait, are you saying he was on earth. Brett chuckled. Yes, we are all on earth. He replied emphatically.”

    “Wait-Wait, are you saying he was on earth.” This could probably be shortened to “He was on Earth?” [Alternative: “He was on Earth? Are you sure?”] In addition to being shorter, I think it conveys a bit more forcefully that he’s surprised that the man in the picture would be on Earth.

    “My little brother had CP, he used to walk like that too, and the attitude was a dead giveaway” “Used to, do you mean they made it so that the CP didn’t affect him anymore, can they do that for me?” I think Brett’s line here can be shortened to “Used to? He got better?”

    Hmm. It feels a bit contrived that the detective just happens to have a brother with CP. That strikes me as a lucky break. One alternative (that would rely more on the detective’s skills than luck) would be to have diagnose the disease and then look it up while Brett is unconscious. (In the current version, he encourages Brett by suggesting that his brother got better. He could do something similar here by suggesting that the research was difficult because CP was fixed/cured ages ago, so it hasn’t been in the news recently).

    I think this ending would make for a better cliffhanger if we saw something a bit interesting from the guy in the green jacket. Maybe foreshadowing. Is he holding something unusual? Is he acting unusual? Is he acting in a way that hints at urgency or danger?

  30. bretton 25 May 2010 at 6:43 pm

    lol on the business suit question, dude. Yes Alec does wear a business suit. As a matter of fact, that is the most ‘visually striking’ thing about him per se, because no one else does. The point of the character is that no one else will treat Brett the way he does because no one else is ‘earthling’ and Brett needs someone who he can relate to as well as someone who knows about this world and can teach him. Alec’s disabled brother is a way for them to initially connect.

  31. bretton 07 Jun 2010 at 2:35 pm

    Hey B.mac, I have this idea for a superhero story involving these characters which would take place in a fictional city on earth. Alec would be a sort of disgraced PI with Superspeed and Brett would have superstrength and work under him along with the Garret character. Dante’s motivations would be the same except he wouldn’t have a solo chapter until Brett finds out he’s bad. Dante would have the ability to shoot fire from his eyes and hands and would have increased strength and speed whenever he is in a fire from an outside source. (ie a buildings on fire and he was in it , lightening strikes and a tree catches on fire) Brett’s father would have a larger role as he would be one of the higher ups in the police department. I’m still working on the space cop story full force, I’d just like to know what you think. I plan on creating different characters in this story down the line.
    Thanks for the help.

  32. bretton 08 Jun 2010 at 2:33 pm

    here’s the new version of chapter five:
    CHAPTER FIVE

    Brett groaned, he heard a clicking sound. Suddenly, he felt a tingling sensation course through his body and he abruptly sat up.
    “Easy now.” Said a man in a brownish gold suit with rumpled dirty blonde hair.
    “What am I, a horse?”
    “Is that some kind of slang you kids are using these days?” said the man as he walked to a metal table across the room. He put the silver pen-like object on the table and walked back to Brett.
    “How are you feeling?” asked the man.
    “Ok, I guess,” He looked over at the pen-like object on the table.
    Seemingly knowing, what he was looking at the man said. “You needn’t concern yourself with that.
    “What is that thing?”
    “Do you feel up to answering some questions.
    “Like what?” said Brett as he swung his legs around the edge of the metal slab he was laying on. “Ahhh!”
    The man put a hand on his naked shoulder. “That may not be the best idea.”
    “Ya think?”
    “Can you tell me what happened to you?”
    “One minute, I was taking a leak, the next, I’m…
    The man raised his eyebrow. “What is it?”
    Brett shook his head. “Nothing, probably some bad dream.”
    “Try me.”
    “Well, the next thing I remember, I was on…”
    “Yeah,”
    “a spaceship.”
    Did you see the people piloting it?”
    You’re talking like you’re not surprised said Brett, bewildered.
    “Answer my question.
    I saw the guy who came after me he was a guy with a bushy beard-“
    The man’s eyes went wide. He began foraging though his pocket and pulled out a folded piece of paper. He unfolded it and handed it to Brett-it was a picture of a man with the bushy beard.
    “I must still dreaming, Brett said without looking up from the picture.
    “Do you know this man.”
    As I was about to say before you interrupted me, I saw him looking at me when I went shopping with my mom last week- Speaking of whom, I really need to get home, my mom’s neurotic as it is, and I never go out so-
    “He was on earth, are you sure?”
    Brett chuckled. Yes, we are all on earth. He replied emphatically.
    The man sighed, he rubbed his temples
    No, I mean- Did you see him at the mall
    The man took a deep breath.
    Look, can I home now?”
    You can’t leave.
    What are you talking about, I have to get home, my mom’ll-
    Your mom will be safer if you stay here.
    Are you threatening to-
    No, of course not, but you were bought into space for a reason and-“
    Brett began pinching himself,
    “What are you doing?”
    “I’m trying to wake up.” Said Brett
    The man pinched him
    “ow! Said Brett, rubbing the spot which was now red. “What you do that for?”
    “This isn’t a dream. My name is Alec Rodriguez and I’m a detective of the intergalactic police corps.
    Brett got up and began walking around, trying to process this information.
    “Look, I know this is hard to believe, I’m human too, and the first time I- As Brett wobbled forward, Alec put his hand on his stomach.
    Slow down, you should have healed by now, let me go get the helix.
    “Is that what that pen-thing is called?”
    “Yeah,” said Alec going back to the metal it usually heals the injured back to perfect health, I’m not sure Why it’s not working for you.”
    “Look, I’ve never needed help before and I don’t now, so I’d really appreciate it if you’d take your hand away from my stomach. Alec put his hands up as if he were about to be arrested.
    “Have it your way.”
    As he watched Brett continue on, a look of astonishment appeared on Alec’s face.
    “You have cerebral palsy don’t you,”
    “Yeah, How’d you know?”
    “My little brother had CP, he used to walk like that too, and the attitude was a dead giveaway”
    “Used to, do you mean they made it so that the CP didn’t affect him anymore, can they do that for me?”
    Before Alec could answer, the big metal doors opened at the other end of the room. What appeared to be a man with pasty white skin. Combed over dark hair and a green jacket stood in the doorway.
    “I have to talk to you,” he said.
    Alec turned to him. “Anything you have to say, you can say in front of our guest.”
    The man stepped forward cautiously. Alec turned back to Brett.
    “You know, throughout our conversation, I never got your name,”
    “Brett, Brett Aldmen”
    Alec turned back to the man.
    Garret, meet the guy whose going to help us bring Willis- “ He turned back to brett. “Busky Beard Kramer and company, down.”
    “He’s not going to like this.
    “Let me worry about him.” He said to Garret.
    He sighed “Alright, Dante Ricardo has been spotted on Ion Prime.
    “OK, I want you to take Brett and-“
    “What the hell are you two talking about?”
    Alec and Garret looked at him. Alec simply sighed and put his hands on Brett’s shoulders.
    “There’s no need for profanity, son. Now Garret is going to take with him to Ion Prime, you may be able to help us-
    Brett grabbed his hands and threw them off his shoulders He took a step back. “This Dante ricardo, does he have shaggy brown hair and prothetic legs?
    Alec blinked his eyes. Garret’s face contorted into a frown.
    “Yes- You know him, don’t you?”
    Brett said nothing, he simply turned around and wobbled out the door

  33. B. Macon 10 Jun 2010 at 9:16 pm

    –Generally, I like to avoid reviewing rewrites of chapters before the author has completed a draft of the manuscript. I will mainly limit my comments to new material.

    –Why is Alec astonished to see that Brett has CP?

    –The sentence introducing Willis and Busky Beard Kramer was hard for me to follow. Are Willis and BBK the same person? Part of the same organization?

    –I like the new ending better. It makes Brett more of a player and wobbling out the door shows us something about his drive.

  34. bretton 10 Jul 2010 at 9:23 pm

    Hi everyone, haven’t posted anything in a while, but I’m working hard and I’ll be sharing soon. B.mac, please don’t delete my forum because I lost my work and the forum is now my only ‘copy’
    Thanks!

  35. ShardReaperon 11 Jul 2010 at 1:05 pm

    Hope to hear from you soon.

  36. B. Macon 11 Jul 2010 at 5:49 pm

    “B.mac, please don’t delete my forum because I lost my work and the forum is now my only ‘copy’” Okay. I don’t delete forums unless the author asks me to. I’d recommend saving a copy as soon as possible, though.

  37. bretton 05 Dec 2010 at 3:45 pm

    Hey guys!! Just wanted to share a new version of chapter one. I retooled it a bit and really opened up the story. It needs a polish ut its not crap like the stuff you guys already read.
    Enjoy!!!

    CHAPTER ONE
    For many years, mankind has asked itself the same question over and over again: What’s out there? Well, I have the answer: A whole hellava lot. I bet all you dumbasses are wondering how I came across this information. It all started when I was fifteen. I was running late as usual, so I hurried down the stairs hoping I wouldn’t miss the bus for the third time this month.
    “Brett, get down here!” I heard my mother call.
    “I’m comin, I’m comin-“ I replied. Suddenly, My shoe scoffed the wooden stairs and I tumbled down. As I landed, the smell of fresh paint filled my nostrils. I opened my eyes to see my mother standing over me, her short auburn hair and small hazel eyes stared down at me.
    “This is what I’m talking about.”
    I sighed and put my hand on the wooden banister to pull myself up. “Not now, mom.”
    “You’re not listening to me.” She said.
    “Yeah well, I got better things to do than listen to you drone on all day.” I turned and walked down the wooden hallway and into the kitchen to get my backpack My mom and I lived in a small red townhouse about fifteen minutes away from school. Granted, it wasn’t the biggest house in the world, but after the divorce, my mom was insistent that I stay in the same school, so as not to bombard me with too much change at once. I guess she thought she was doing me a kindness. Trust me when I tell you, she wasn’t. I picked up the backpack and hoisted over my shoulder. I groaned.
    “Heavy?”
    I turned to see my mom standing behind me.
    “Yeah, I replied, “It’s filled with all the homework I decided not to do last night.
    She grunted as I walked past her back towards the stairs. I hung my backpack on the banister and opened the front door a few feet away. Then I plopped down on the steps expecting to just sit there waiting quietly for the bus. Unfortunately, my mom had other ideas.
    “Are you ok?” She asked.
    Peachy.” I replied.
    “I’m serious, stand up.”
    I begrudgingly complied and held my arms out so that my body formed a T. She put her hands on her hips and puffed out her cheeks. I didn’t move.
    “Do I have to spell it out for you?”
    I took a deep breath and put my arms up.
    “Take your coat off.” She said, enunciating each word.
    I took my coat off and she began to look me over. First, she rolled up my sleeve and check for bruises there were none. Then she made me turn around so she could check my neck. There were none. After that, she pulled down my pants, and not just the pants ethier, to make sure my legs were ok. They were. I still don’t know why she pulled them all the way down. It’s not like my balls were broken or anything like that if I didn’t know better, I’d say she was checkin, the angle of the dangle.
    “OK, can we stop now please?”
    “In a minute,” She said tilting my hand back.
    What are you doing
    “Checking your head for any major concussions.”
    “Alright,” I said, pushing her hand away. “Isn’t that something you check first and not last?”
    “Hold on lemme just-“
    “No,” I said, pulling up my pants, “I have to get to school I grabbed my backpack off the banister and pushed the screen door open.
    Wait. She said.
    I let the door slam shut.
    “What now?” I whined
    She walked over to the hall closet and pulled out a silver question mark shaped cane. It had a black rubber tip and the arch was coded with black leather.
    “Here, take this with you.” She tried to give me the cane, but I shook my head. I’m a gimp, not a cripple.
    My mom scoffed at me, she hated the C word.
    “Just take it,” She pleaded. I don’t want another incident like today, or last week for that matter.
    A week prior, my mom had taken me shopping at the strip mall downtown. We had a wedding to go to, so of course I couldn’t dress myself because y’know I was only fifteen. My mom dragged me to a shirt rack and looked through them. After a while she held up two shirts. One was a red checkered shirt while the other was a red shirt with a black stripe going through it. I shrugged and she marched off to the checkout counter.
    I let my eyes wander then. It was actually a pretty nice place. The light refracting from the ceiling gave the whole store a yellowish hue. I saw a bald man behind me looking at a flannel shirt with thin blue and yellow lines going through it. A group of women a few feet to my left were laughing amongst themselves when one of them held a shirt to their torso that was far too small for them.
    It was then that I saw him. He was hiding behind one of the clothing racks, he wasn’t very well hidden. He was a tall man with a bushy beard and long blonde hair that fell all the way down to his behind. He wore a brown over coat.
    Bushy beard must have realized I noticed him, because he began to run through the store, towards a second exit at the other end. Without thinking I ran after him.
    “Hey hold on!” I yelled.
    Bushy Beard didn’t stop and ran through the other door. Before I could catch up I fell and a crowd formed around. A man in a blue shirt and had curly dark hair stepped forward.
    Are you ok buddy? He said.
    I looked up at him helplessly,
    Buddy…
    “Brett, you’re about to miss your bus.” Said my mom
    I turned around to see a small yellow school bus pulling away.
    “Gotta go mom,” I said, as I step out the door.
    ‘Cane’ she said.
    I was already lucky she wasn’t trying to keep me home because of that fall I just took, so I went back inside to get the Cane and headed out the door again.
    “One more thing,” She said.
    “Mom!”
    She pulled my head close to her shoulder and kissed my temple.
    “I love you, have a good day-“
    I pushed the door open and started out again, I know, I know
    “-and make sure you go to the nurse just to make sure you’re ok.”
    I never made it to the nurse that day.

  38. B. Macon 05 Dec 2010 at 8:22 pm

    Except for some minor grammar/spelling/punctuation issues, this is really good.

    For example, the opening paragraph struck me as remarkably effective. I have some minor suggestions for shortening it, but the concept is helluva stylish. “For many years, mankind has asked the same question again and again: What’s out there? I have the answer: A whole helluva lot. I bet all you dumbasses are wondering how I found that out. It all started when I was fifteen.”

    I disagree with you that your original version was crap, but I had been a bit concerned about whether the main character would have the liveliness and personality to interest readers. I think that your new opening paragraph is a massive step in the right direction.

    Truly minor word choice: “I wouldn’t miss the bus for the third time this month”—what would you think about the “third time this week?”

    “You’re not listening to me.” She said. When you have a tag like “She said” or “Mom said”, the dialogue should end with a comma rather than a period. “You’re not listening to me,” she said.

    This next opinion may seem counterintuitive, based on how much I liked “I bet all you dumbasses…”, but him aggressively sassing out his mom may compromise his likability. “Yeah well, I got better things to do than listen to you drone on all day” seems like an unprovoked escalation against a figure that has been more friendly than not so far. Alternately, if he’s going to escalate things with his mother, it might sound more likable and less aggressive if his line were more witty. Maybe something like “Maybe if you had said ‘don’t trip on your own awesomeness,’ I would have listened to you” or something about how the bus is about to come and he can’t stand around listening.

    “I turned and walked down the wooden hallway and into the kitchen to get my backpack My mom and I..”

    “I guess she thought she was doing me a kindness. Trust me when I tell you, she wasn’t.” I think you can show/imply his disagreement here. For example, you could shorten this to “She imagined she was doing me a kindness.”

    I would recommend toning down the part where she strip-searches him for bruises. Up until that point, I think you had a good mix of the vaguely caring (her searching for bruises) with her being too intrusive/not particularly likable/someone we’d want him to get away from.

    “She walked over to the hall closet and pulled out a silver question mark shaped cane. It had a black rubber tip and the arch was coded with black leather.” Hmm. This is a sort of strange way to describe the cane—the main impression I get is that it’s mysterious: it’s shaped like a question mark, the arch is “coded,” etc. If he’s refusing the cane because he thinks it makes him look weak, it might help to describe the cane in terms of weakness or humiliation. (Like a deformed leg or whatever).

    “I never made it to the nurse that day.” I like that foreshadowing—it’s more effectively phrased than “I didn’t go to the nurse” because it suggests there may be nefarious forces at work.

    Keep up the good work! I’m looking forward to the next chapter.

  39. bretton 10 Jan 2011 at 11:25 pm

    I was surfing the net a few weeks ago and came across a book series called garret pi now does that mean I should change the name of the garret in my story?

  40. B. Macon 11 Jan 2011 at 1:44 pm

    Garret is a pretty generic name. If your character’s name is Garret but he has a different surname than Pi, you’re fine.

    The less distinct a name is, the less of a problem it is if your character shares it with another.

  41. bretton 26 Feb 2011 at 6:49 pm

    I hate to say it but I may have to go back to the drawing board. Jim butcher has plans for a book that sounds a lot like mine. I literally found out today. I’m on my second draft what should I do is this similar. A good analogy for it would be mine is to his as aquaman is to namor.

  42. bretton 26 Feb 2011 at 7:28 pm

    Sorry guys False alarm. While it is similar there’s only detail that isn’t even that big of a deal. Might change it.
    his 200 years in the future
    mine’s now
    his is men in black type stuff
    mine is hawaii five o.

    Yeah… VERY bad day today lol

  43. B. Macon 27 Feb 2011 at 10:59 am

    Even if the premises were very, very similar, I don’t think that would necessarily be a problem. You could successfully make your book feel distinct in many ways (for example, by developing the characters in different directions, by going with a different genre, a different mood, a different writing style, a different target audience, etc). My rule of thumb is that if someone can enjoy one even though he’s read the other, both works can succeed.

    For example, Spiderman and Kick-Ass both feature a teenage dork becoming a superhero, but they are highly distinct. Kick-Ass is a dark comedy, KA’s protagonist is an unromanticized loser (rather than a shy-but-lovable nerd), KA has less romance, KA’s material is significantly more mature and cynical, etc. Also, the cast is significantly different. KA’s most important side characters are a dysfunctional but loving father-and-daughter superhero team, whereas Spidey’s most important sides are a highly relatable but sometimes bland love interest and grandmother.

    Likewise, some of Terry Pratchett’s works (such as the Unseen Academicals) feature a magical school, but I don’t think anyone would take them for a ripoff of J.K. Rowling/Harry Potter. He focuses on (excellent) comedy and he pushes zaniness so much it feels surreal.

    Some other examples of works that are really distinct from each other even though they share some major plot elements or a similar premise: His Majesty’s Dragon vs. Anne McAffrey. The Wire vs. Law and Order. True Lies vs. James Bond vs. The Bourne Identity. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy vs. Titan AE. Dr. Strangelove vs. Fail-Safe vs. On The Beach. Pokemon vs. Legendz. The Odd Squad vs. The X-Files vs. Hellboy’s BPRD. The Incredibles vs. Fantastic Four. Canada vs. the United States. White Fang vs. Old Yeller. Signs vs. Independence Day. Team America vs. GI Joe or Team America vs. anything by Jerry Bruckheimer. Anne Rice vs. (shudder) Stephanie Meier. Ender’s Game vs. Harry Potter vs. Sky High (three young guys enroll in extraordinary schools, but the similarities pretty much end there).

    I’ve never watched Hawaii Five-O and am not familiar with Butcher’s new project, so I don’t know what either are like, but I’m guessing anything like a cop show is probably not going to feel like anything MIB-esque.



    I’m not terribly familiar with Namor or Aquaman, but from my limited understanding, I don’t feel they’re as distinct as the above examples.
    –They’re both arrogant Atlantean royals with aquatic-themed powers.
    –Personality-wise, I feel they’re very similar (arrogant/domineering), although Namor works harder to be an ass.
    –I would characterize both as antiheros, although Aquaman’s edges are softer. (I want Susan Storm to knock out Namor’s teeth so bad).
    –Their interests in the surface world both focus heavily on environmental damage.
    –The characters are very demographically similar (age, gender, race, nationality, job, etc). Namor is a half-Atlantean, half-human whereas Aquaman is (sometimes) a full-Atlantean, which could theoretically make a difference, but I haven’t seen any stories that used that to take either character in a much different direction.
    –Aquaman’s stories (particularly those by Rick Veteich) are sometimes more mystical than Namor’s, which is a good start.
    –Romance plays a somewhat bigger role in Namor’s appearances (he’s competing with Reed Richards for Susan). One way to make the characters more distinct would be to increase the centrality of Namor’s romance, so that their genres are a bit different.

  44. bretton 07 Jun 2011 at 10:11 pm

    Hey guys, I’m proud to say I completed a television pilot script based on the story of the novel. I know tv scripts aren’t the norm at superheronation, but if anyone’s interested, let me know.

  45. bretton 08 Jun 2011 at 6:40 pm

    Here’s the first act:

    FADE IN:

    FULL SHOT OF A CLOUDLESS PURPLE SKY. – DAY

    We hover there for a few seconds as the voiceover starts

    BRETT V.O.
    For thousands of years, mankind has always asked the same question…

    A body falls into frame, we follow it.

    BRETT V.O.
    “What’s out there?

    The body continues to fall.

    BRETT V.O.
    Well, I have the answer…

    Camera angles on the body. Close shot of Brett’s face.

    BRETT V.O.
    A whole hellava lot.

    FADE TO BLACK.

    ACT ONE

    EXT. BRETT’S HOUSE. – MORNING

    The house is painted red and the windows are closed.

    ANGLE ON BRETT

    He is rushing around trying to get ready for school. He runs out the door of his room.

    MOM O.S.
    Brett, lets go you’re going to be late!

    BRETT V.O.
    I’m comin, I’m-

    As Brett shouts, he falls down the stairs and lands on his back.

    Brett POV OF MOM, UPSIDE DOWN.

    MOM
    hoW many times have I told you to be careful.

    Brett gets up by holding on to the wooden banister to the left.

    BRETT
    First you tell me to hurry up then you tell me to be careful which more often than not I can’t do because I’m in a hurry, why don’t you make up your mind?

    She tilts his head back and moves her finger from one eye to the other.

    BRETT
    What are you doing?

    MOM
    Checking to see if you have a concussion

    BRETT
    Mom!!

    MOM
    Alright just promise you’ll go to the nurse as soon as you get to school.

    BRETT
    (rolls eyes)
    Sure.

    MOM
    I’m serious.

    BRETT
    (relents)
    I promise, as soon as I get off that damn bus, which is late again as usual.

    MOM
    First of all, watch your mouth. Second of all, what are you gonna do when your father and I aren’t there to pick you up.

    BRETT
    Dad’s never there, period. He’s always working.

    MOM
    That’s not true.

    BRETT
    Oh, I’m sorry.
    (uses air quotes with his hands)
    Working”

    MOM
    Look, the point is we just want you to be more careful. I don’t want you to have another incident, like last week at the mall.

    BRETT V.O.
    Yeah, about that, it’s kind of a funny story.

    FLASHBACK- STRIPMALL-ONE WEEK EARLIER.

    CLOSE UP OF BRETT. Camera pans to mom whose holding up two shirts. One is black and white checkered. The other is black with a blue line going the through it.

    Camera pans to Brett, he shrugs. She scoffs and walks away. Brett suddenly feels like he’s being watched. He turns to see a man in a trench coat with long blonde hair. He sees Brett and runs. Almost on instinct he runs after him.

    BRETT
    Hey Stop!

    The man keeps running. Brett falls and the man makes it out the other door. A crowd gathers around him.

    MAN
    Hey buddy, you ok?

    BACK TO:

    INT. BRETT’S HOUSE. – MORNING

    His mom is in the middle of lecturing.

    MOM
    Brett are you, listening you have Cerebreal Palsy you have to-

    BRETT
    (interrupts)
    I understand, but I can’t not do things just because it’s a little more difficult for me than everybody else.

    She is about to speak again, when there’s a honk. A small yellow bus has pulled up in front of the house.

    BRETT
    Finally! That’s my ride I gotta go!

    MOM
    At least take your cane, first.

    Camera follows mom as she goes to the closet. She opens it and pulls a question mark shaped Cane. She extends the cane to him. He is about to take when she pulls it away.

    MOM
    I thought you were good at English?

    BRETT
    What does that mean?

    MOM
    You said can’t not, before. That’s a double negative.

    BRETT
    (grabs the cane)
    Mom, I don’t have time for an English lesson right now, I have to go.

    Brett starts wobbling out the door, Cane in hand.

    MOM
    Remember to go to the nurse.

    BRETT
    Got it.

    MOM
    Did you put on clean underwear.

    BRETT
    (opening the screen door)
    Don’t be such a cliche.

    She clears her throat, Brett looks back to see her with her arms spread out. He rolls his eyes and wobbles back to hug her.

    MOM
    I love you very much.

    BRETT
    Uh huh, Can I go now?

    The bus honks and Brett runs out the door.

    MOM
    Did you go to the bathroom?

    BRETT
    Goodbye, mom.

    CUT TO:

    EXT. BUS – MOMENTS LATER

    The camera pans across the bus. We pan until we see Brett running to catch the bus.

    BRETT
    (out of breath)
    They’re supposed to wait for me.

    §The bus stops eventually and an African American girl named candy gets off. Brett walks over and she tries to help him.

    BRETT
    I got it.

    Brett climbs the steps and puts the cane down first and follows through with his right foot. Camera pans to a heavyset woman with thick bifocal glasses

    BRETT
    Hi Ms Betty

    MS BETTY
    (cheerfully)
    Hi Brett!

    Brett POV THE SEATS.

    Brett sits parallel to the only student on the bus he is dressed all in black and listening to his headphones.

    Brett takes his seat and candy tries to help him buckle his seatbelt but he refuses. He buckles, she watches as he does it

    CANDY
    We’re ready.

    The bus starts to move. Brett turns to the student.

    BRETT
    Hey Dante.

    No answer.

    BRETT
    Dante

    Still no answer.

    Candy taps him on the shoulder. He rips the earphones.

    DANTE
    What?

    Candy motions to Brett. Camera pans back to Dante.

    DANTE
    What do you want cripple?

    BRETT
    C’mon Dante, I thought you and I gave the short bus a good name.

    DANTE
    What is that supposed to mean?

    BRETT
    We’re both disabled. Sure, We’re not disabled in the same way, but-

    DANTE
    (laughs,)
    Your only disability is in the mind.

    BRETT
    Why do you say that?

    DANTE
    How long did it take you to get up those steps.

    BRETT
    I dunno, three maybe four minutes.

    DANTE
    And you used your cane?

    BRETT
    Yeah

    DANTE
    So while I literally don’t have a leg to stand on,
    (pulls up pantleg and shows prostetic leg)
    You have two and a cane and yet it still takes you ‘three or four minutes to get up those stairs? Would you like to know how long it takes me?

    BRETT
    Why are you always like this with me Dante? All I’ve ever done is try to be nice to you and all you do is insult me.

    DANTE
    If it bothers you so much why not simply get up and do something about it?

    BRETT
    What, like fight you? Yeah, that would go over well to gimps fighting each other.

    DANTE
    First of all, I’m not a gimp, second of all a fight with you is not something I desire, at least not now.

    BRETT
    What does that mean?

    BRETT POV DANTE SMILING

    THE BUS screetches to a Halt

    MS BETTY
    We’re Here!

    Dante flicks Candy’s hand away and stands up BEAT

    DANTE
    Good luck today.

    We pan back to Brett looking confused. We pan back to Dante. He wobbles down two steps and falls students laugh

    STUDENT#1
    Hey guys look at metallo!

    Everyone begins to laugh.

    CAMERA POVS ON BRETT, WHO RUNS TO THE FOOT OF THE STAIRS. CANDY PUTS HER FINGER UP.

    STUDENT#2
    Hey metallo, walk much?

    Candy tries to help him but Dante puts his leg back on and runs into the building.

    Brett walks down and the bus pulls away. Tracking shot as Brett leans up against the wall. One of the students who laugh at Dante comes up to him.

    STUDENT#1
    (exagerrated)
    Hey buddy how are you?

    BRETT
    (speaking plainly)
    Good.

    STUDENT#1
    Yeah? How was your weekend?

    BRETT
    Fine How bout you?

    STUDENT#1
    Good, well I have to go but I’ll see you in class ok?

    BRETT
    (mumbles)
    Sounds good.

    The student walks away. The camera pans back to Brett who is looking in the window to see if any teachers were watching. In the other door two students try to sneak in.

    TEACHER#1
    Hey you know rules! No ones allowed in until the bell rings!

    Brett takles the opportunity.

    TEACHER#1
    (notices Brett)
    Stop!

    Camera follows Brett to the bathroom as he goes to the urinal. Zoom in on Brett’s face

    BRETT V.O.
    Word to the wise- When your teacher tells you to do something,

    A pair of hands grabs Brett’s face. A white cloth is in the one that touches his mouth.

    BRETT V.O.
    You do it.

    CUT TO:

    INT. SPACESHIP – DAY

    BRETT is lying in the back of the ship. A red hue covers his body He moans

    PILOT
    Oh shit, he’s awake

    BUSHY BEARD
    (sighs)
    Just keep steering, I’ll take care of it

    PILOT
    He gonna kill us

    BUSHY BEARD
    (Clasps his shoulder)
    Just. Keep. Steering.

    We follow bushy beard.

    BUSHY BEARD
    Y’know, I told him that we shouldn’t have used something so primitive to capture you, but what do I know?

    PILOT
    Not a lot, considering we’re all going to die

    BUSHY BEARD
    Oh shut up.

    Brett’s POV The camera shakes as he goes from one space to another trying to find a way out.

    BUSHY BEARD
    Maybe I should just kill you…

    PILOT
    (o.s)
    Don’t fire that thing in here!

    BUSHY BEARD
    Steer!

    Brett’s fingers touch an escape hatch. Camera pans back to Bushy beard panicked

    BUSHY BEARD
    No!!

    He fires the gun and watches as Brett slides out.

    BACK TO:

    FULL SHOT OF A CLOUDLESS PURPLE SKY. – DAY

    BRETT V.O.
    Like I said, a whole hell of ~alot.

    INT. PLANET CANABIA HQ – THREE DAYS LATER

    Brett’s POV A blinding white light as he opens his eyes as the blurryness goes away we see a man, Alec, late thirties with dirty blonde hair and a scruffy beard.

    ALEC
    Good to see your awake. We were worried about you.

    Brett tries to get up. He moans. Close up of Alec’s hand on Brett’s shoulder.

    ALEC
    Easy there, son.

    BRETT
    What am I a horse?

    ALEC
    Is that the slang you kids are using these days?

    Tracking shot of Alec. Camera pans as Alec reaches for a pen like object on the table. He walks back to Brett.

    BRETT
    Great, if you don’t count the jack hammer in my head and my whole body throbb-

    Alec sticks the pen in his chest. It takes Brett’s breath away.

    ALEC
    There, that should help.

    BRETT
    What’d you do that for?!

    ALEC
    I just told you.

    Alec walks back to the table and puts the pen like object down.

    ALEC
    Do you remember how you got here?

    BRETT
    Last thing I remember I was-

    ALEC
    Yes?

    BRETT
    Nevermind it was probably just a dream.

    Alec walks across the room to get a chair. He pulls it up need to Brett and sits down, his legs warped around the hind legs and chest leaning against the backrest.

    ALEC
    Try me.

    BRETT
    OK, I was in the bathroom, and the next thing I know I was aboard a spaceship.

    ALEC
    Do you know who was piloting it?

    BRETT
    There was a- Wait, why aren’t you looking at me like I’m crazy?

    ALEC
    WHO was piloting it?

    BRETT
    Some guy in a bushy beard was telling a guy in a helmet to steer, so I guess he was.

    Alec reaches into his pocket and pulls out a piece of paper. He holds it up to Brett.

    ALEC
    Was this the guy?

    BRETT
    I knew he looked familiar. He was the one giving the orders but I think I met him before.

    ALEC
    Where?

    BRETT
    At a mall, I’m not sure where it is from here, but-

    ALEC
    A mall on earth.

    BRETT
    (sarcastically)
    Yes, because ya know, only malls exsist on earth can I go now?

    ALEC
    That’s not a good idea.

    BRETT
    Look, My mom is like super-narotic so if I’m not home by three-

    ALEC
    You’ve been out for three days.

    BRETT
    What?

    ALEC
    You fell ten thousand feet. Had we not gotten to you in time…

    BRETT
    If I fell ten thousand feet then how am I alive.

    ALEC
    Our technnology here is far more advanced than what you have on earth.

    BRETT
    This is crazy.

    ALEC
    My name is Alec Rodriguez and I am a detective of the intergalactic police corps.

    BRETT
    Thank you for saving me, Alec, but I have to go home.

    He starts to leave.

    ALEC
    If you go home, you may put your mother in danger.

    BRETT
    I’m sorry, Is that a threat?

    ALEC
    No, but whoever kidnapped you might threaten them if you decide to go home.

    BRETT
    So then what do I do?

    ALEC
    Stay here and let me help you.

    Brett begins pinching himself.

    ALEC
    What are you doing?

    BRETT
    I’m trying to wake up.

    Alec pinches him.

    BRETT
    (rubs his skin)
    Ow!

    ALEC
    This isn’t one of your scifi movies, this is real. Now I don’t know why you were kidnapped, but I need you to stay here and help me figure it out. Just because you have cerebal palsy that does not mean you’re incapable of handling things like this. I know this is new. I’m an earthling like you so I understand what you’re going through right now, but I need you to pull yourself together.

    BRETT
    How’d you-

    ALEC
    Before our computer crashed, he did a scan of your body so we everything about you.

    BRETT
    What do you mean he?

    ALEC
    OH YOU’LL FIND OUT ABOUT HIM LATER.

    BRETT
    Ever heard of privacy?

    ALEC
    In order to assess what was broken we needed to do a full scan everything else just came along with it.

    BRETT
    Stuff was broken?

    ALEC
    Yes.

    A Beat.

    BRETT
    So if you’re from earth, then how’d you end up here?

    Alec opens his mouth to answer when the camera pans over to the door. It opens and a boy in his mid-teens comes through. His name is Garret. He looks at Brett with distain.

    ALEC
    Ah, just in time! I take it Benny’s back online?

    Garret looks at Brett.

    ALEC
    Anything you have to say, you can say in front of him.

    GARRET
    One of my contacts came here personally to deliver this.

    He hands him the papers,

    ALEC
    Brave of him.

    GARRET
    This was taken about three hours ago.

    As Alec hands him the the papers Brett notices Dante in the photo

    BRETT
    Dante…

    F.G. SHOT OF Brett and Garret looking at Brett in shock.

    ALEC
    You know him?

    BRETT
    Yeah, we ride the bus together.

    ALEC
    (to garret)
    Take Mr…

    BRETT
    Brett, Brett Aldmen.

    ALEC
    Take Brett with you to the bar and see what you can find out

    GARRET
    I don’t think that’s-

    ALEC
    That’s an order- and get him some new clothes.

    Alec walks out of the room. Brett and garret stare at each other for a few seconds.

    GARRET
    Well, Let’s go.

  46. FotV/Annaon 10 Jun 2011 at 9:20 am

    There were plenty of places that could be better, but most of your problems are word omissions, comma omissions, odd capitalizing, AND THE FACT I NOW HAVE TO WAIT TO HEAR ABOUT DANTE!!! It may have mediocre lines here and there but there were times I burst out laughing. I’m posting now that I think Dante will turn out to be the bad guy that way when I’m wrong I can congratulate you on your originality and if he is then I point out it was a bit predictable. But never worry at worst it’s a minor problem if a problem at all and I doubt anyone will care. Mostly I’m just thinking of things to say to procrastinate against my forum and comic etc.

    By the way thanks for reading pgs 1-6 of draft 16 of my script if you want #18 (entirety) email me or leave your email in my forum. Links on my name.

    Things I didn’t like:

    ALEC
    Before our computer crashed, he did a scan of your body so we everything about you.
    Word ommission. You’ll find it. You write well enough.

    The house is painted red and the windows are closed.
    You’re missing something (I AM THE FORMAT NAZI. Grammar Nazis are so mainstream.)
    *insert* INT. BRETT’S LIVINGROOM? – MORNING
    ANGLE ON BRETT
    He is rushing around trying to get ready for school. He runs out the door of his room.

    I was intrigued enough by your story to read the whole thing and have decided to go line by line fixing things.

  47. FotV/Annaon 10 Jun 2011 at 9:22 am

    Oh and all I’ve read was the most recent post as there was SO much.

  48. FotV/Annaon 10 Jun 2011 at 10:09 am

    I did a line by line edit with my fixes in *()*. You should try typing it in Word first and using its grammar and spell check (don’t be insulted, we should ALL be doing that) and remember to punctuate sentences correctly. But don’t stress too much, we’ll help you. But I was too distracted by the mistakes to really notice how the story could be better. This is largely because so far it is pretty good, but I’m sure B.Mac has suggestions. He ALWAYS has suggestions. XD

    New scenes need a scene heading. Preferrably more descriptive than just the planet name. You should specify which room they are in as well.

    Characters’ names, as well as important objects that will be seen should be introduced in all caps. There are rules on other times to all caps them in action lines but I’m largely self taught and would have to look it up.

    But despite its problems (what I’d expect of an early draft) I feel like I must read the next part. And that is the most important part of writing, getting them to want to buy it and keep reading/watching. Btw is this for a movie or tv show?

    I think it’s cool you have a “disabled” main character. As someone with a disability I can appreciate a character who struggles but it makes him stronger. Mine’s not physical though. But still, awesome.

    FADE IN:

    FULL SHOT OF A CLOUDLESS PURPLE SKY. – DAY

    We hover there for a few seconds as the voiceover starts

    BRETT V.O.
    For thousands of years, mankind has always asked the same question…

    A body falls into frame, we follow it.

    BRETT V.O.
    “What’s out there? *(either “What’s out there?” or What’s out there)*

    The body continues to fall.

    BRETT V.O.
    Well, I have the answer…

    Camera angles on the body. Close shot of Brett’s face. *(with a good director this could come out pretty cool)*

    BRETT V.O.
    A whole hellava lot. *(recommend !)*

    FADE TO BLACK.

    ACT ONE

    EXT. BRETT’S HOUSE. – MORNING

    The house is painted red and the windows are closed.
    *(this seems improbable. My homeowner’s assoc. freaked out when we did a light, though saturated blue with dark blue trim. We were too blue. Given the aversion many people have with red, it can usually only be red if it’s bricks. But if you actually know of a red house in the region this takes place then go for it! I love red.)*

    *(you left something out)*
    *(INT. BRETT’S ROOM – MORNING)*
    ANGLE ON BRETT

    He is rushing around trying to get ready for school.

    *(INT. BRETT’S HOUSE – CONTINUOUS)*

    He runs out the door of his room.

    MOM O.S.
    Brett, let*(’)*s go you’re going to be late!

    BRETT V.o.
    I’m comin*(’)*, I’m-

    As Brett shouts, he falls down the stairs and lands on his back.

    Brett POV OF MOM, UPSIDE DOWN.

    MOM
    HoW*(How)* many times have I told you to be careful*(?)*

    Brett gets up by holding on to the wooden banister to the left.

    BRETT
    First you tell me to hurry up then you tell me to be careful which more often than not I can’t do because I’m in a hurry *(“. Why” Or “! Why”)* why don’t you make up your mind?

    She tilts his head back and moves her finger from one eye to the other.

    BRETT
    What are you doing?

    MOM
    *((Deadpan) I feel would work here.)*
    Checking to see if you have a concussion*(.)* *(cracked me up)*

    BRETT
    Mom!!

    MOM
    Alright just promise you’ll go to the nurse as soon as you get to school.

    BRETT
    (rolls eyes)
    Sure.

    MOM
    I’m serious.

    BRETT
    (relents)
    I promise, as soon as I get off that damn bus, which is late again as usual.

    MOM
    First of all, watch your mouth. Second of all, what are you gonna do when your father and I aren’t there to pick you up. *(pick him up from school or when he falls? That could be important)*

    BRETT
    Dad’s never there, period. He’s always working.

    MOM
    That’s not true.

    BRETT
    Oh, I’m sorry.
    (uses air quotes with his hands)
    *(“)*Working”

    MOM
    Look, the point is we just want you to be more careful. I don’t want you to have another incident, like last week at the mall.

    BRETT V.O.
    Yeah, about that, it’s kind of a funny story.

    FLASHBACK- STRIPMALL-ONE WEEK EARLIER.

    CLOSE UP OF BRETT. Camera pans to *(Mom)* mom whose holding up two shirts. One is black and white checkered. The other is black with a blue line going the through it.

    Camera pans to Brett, he shrugs. She scoffs and walks away. Brett suddenly feels like he’s being watched. He turns to see a man in a trench coat with long blonde hair. He sees Brett and runs. Almost on instinct he runs after him.

    BRETT
    Hey Stop!

    The man keeps running. Brett falls and the man makes it out the other door. A crowd gathers around him.

    MAN
    Hey buddy, you ok?

    BACK TO:

    INT. BRETT’S HOUSE. – MORNING

    His mom is in the middle of lecturing.

    MOM
    Brett are you,*(No comma)* listening you have *(Cerebral Palsy, you spelt it wrong)* Cerebreal Palsy*(. You)* you have to-

    BRETT
    (interrupts)
    I understand, but I can’t not do things just because it’s a little more difficult for me than everybody else.

    She is about to speak again, when there’s a honk. A small yellow bus has pulled up in front of the house.

    BRETT
    Finally! That’s my ride I gotta go!

    MOM
    At least take your cane, *(no comma)* first.

    Camera follows mom as she goes to the closet. She opens it and pulls a question mark shaped Cane. She extends the cane to him. He is about to take when she pulls it away.

    MOM
    I thought you were good at English?

    BRETT
    What does that mean?

    MOM
    You said can’t not, before. That’s a double negative.

    BRETT
    (grabs the cane)
    Mom, I don’t have time for an English lesson right now, I have to go.

    Brett starts wobbling out the door, Cane in hand.

    MOM
    Remember to go to the nurse.

    BRETT
    Got it.

    MOM
    Did you put on clean underwear.

    BRETT
    (opening the screen door)
    Don’t be such a cliché. *(I feel an exclamation mark could go here or not)*

    She clears her throat, Brett looks back to see her with her arms spread out. He rolls his eyes and wobbles back to hug her.

    MOM
    I love you very much.

    BRETT
    Uh huh, Can I go now?

    The bus honks and Brett runs out the door.

    MOM
    Did you go to the bathroom?

    BRETT
    Goodbye, mom.

    CUT TO:

    EXT. BUS – MOMENTS LATER

    The camera pans across the bus. We pan until we see Brett running to catch the bus.

    BRETT
    (out of breath)
    They’re supposed to wait for me.

    The bus stops eventually and an African American girl named candy *(Candy)* gets off. Brett walks over and she tries to help him.

    BRETT
    I got it.

    *(INT. BUS – CONTINUOUS)*

    Brett climbs the steps and puts the cane down first and follows through with his right foot. Camera pans to a heavyset woman with thick bifocal glasses

    BRETT
    Hi*(,)* Ms*(.)* Betty*(punctuation mark)*

    MS. BETTY
    (cheerfully)
    Hi Brett!

    Brett POV THE SEATS.

    Brett sits parallel to the only student on the bus he is dressed all in black and listening to his headphones.

    Brett takes his seat and candy tries to help him buckle his seatbelt but he refuses. He buckles, she watches as he does it

    CANDY
    We’re ready.

    The bus starts to move. Brett turns to the student.

    BRETT
    Hey Dante.

    No answer.

    BRETT
    Dante*(?)*

    Still no answer.

    Candy taps him on the shoulder. He rips the earphones.

    DANTE
    What?

    Candy motions to Brett. Camera pans back to Dante.

    DANTE
    What do you want cripple?

    BRETT
    C’mon Dante, I thought you and I gave the short bus a good name.

    DANTE
    What is that supposed to mean?

    BRETT
    We’re both disabled. Sure, We’re not disabled in the same way, but-

    DANTE
    (laughs)
    Your only disability is in the mind.

    BRETT
    Why do you say that?

    DANTE
    How long did it take you to get up those steps.*(?)*

    BRETT
    I dunno,*(. Three, maybe)* three maybe four minutes.

    DANTE
    And you used your cane?

    BRETT
    Yeah*(.)*

    DANTE
    So while I literally don’t have a leg to stand on,
    (pulls up pantleg and shows prostetic *(prosthetic)* leg)
    You have two and a cane and yet it still takes you ‘three or four minutes to get up those stairs? Would you like to know how long it takes me?

    BRETT
    Why are you always like this with me*(,)* Dante? All I’ve ever done is try to be nice to you and all you do is insult me.

    DANTE
    If it bothers you so much why not simply get up and do something about it?

    BRETT
    What, like fight you? Yeah, that would go over well to gimps fighting each other.

    DANTE
    First of all, I’m not a gimp, second of all a fight with you is not something I desire, at least not now.

    BRETT
    What does that mean?

    BRETT POV DANTE SMILING

    THE BUS screetches *(screeches)* to a *(halt)* Halt

    MS BETTY
    We’re *(here)* Here!

    Dante flicks Candy’s hand away and stands up BEAT

    DANTE
    Good luck today.

    We pan back to Brett looking confused. We pan back to Dante. He wobbles down two steps and falls*(. Students)* students laugh*(.)*

    STUDENT#1
    Hey guys look at metallo!

    Everyone begins to laugh.

    CAMERA POVS ON BRETT, WHO RUNS TO THE FOOT OF THE STAIRS. CANDY PUTS HER FINGER UP.

    STUDENT#2
    Hey*(,)* metallo, walk much?

    *(EXT. SCHOOL – CONTINUOUS)*

    Candy tries to help him but Dante puts his leg back on and runs into the building.

    Brett walks down and the bus pulls away. Tracking shot as Brett leans up against the wall. One of the students who laugh at Dante comes up to him.

    STUDENT#1
    (exagerrated) *(exaggerated)*
    Hey buddy*(,)* how are you?

    BRETT
    (speaking plainly)
    Good.

    STUDENT#1
    Yeah? How was your weekend?

    BRETT
    Fine*(.)* How bout you?

    STUDENT#1
    Good*(. Well, I)* well I have to go but I’ll see you in class*(,)* ok?

    BRETT
    (mumbles)
    Sounds good.

    The student walks away. The camera pans back to Brett who is looking in the window to see if any teachers were watching. In the other door two students try to sneak in.

    TEACHER#1
    Hey you know rules! No one*(‘)*s allowed in until the bell rings!

    Brett takles *(tackles or takes)* the opportunity.

    TEACHER#1
    (notices Brett)
    Stop!

    *(INT. SCHOOL HALLWAY)*

    Camera follows Brett to the bathroom as he goes to the urinal.
    *(INT. SCHOOL BOYS BATHROOM)*

    Zoom in on Brett’s face

    BRETT V.O.
    Word to the wise-*(wise: When)* When your teacher tells you to do something,*(…)*

    A pair of hands grabs Brett’s face. A white cloth is in the one that touches his mouth.

    BRETT V.O.
    You do it.

    CUT TO:

    INT. SPACESHIP – DAY

    BRETT is lying in the back of the ship. A red hue covers his body He moans

    PILOT
    Oh shit, he’s awake

    BUSHY BEARD
    (sighs)
    Just keep steering,*(steering; I’ll or steering- I’ll)* I’ll take care of it*(.)*

    PILOT
    He gonna kill us *(ending punctuation needed. Also did you mean to say “he gonna” instead of He’s gonna?)*

    BUSHY BEARD
    (Clasps his shoulder)
    Just. Keep. Steering.

    We follow bushy beard. *(Bushy Beard)*

    BUSHY BEARD
    Y’know, I told him that we shouldn’t have used something so primitive to capture you, but what do I know?

    PILOT
    Not a lot, considering we’re all going to die*(punctuation)*

    BUSHY BEARD
    Oh shut up.

    Brett’s POV The camera shakes as he goes from one space to another trying to find a way out.

    BUSHY BEARD
    Maybe I should just kill you…

    PILOT *((O.S.))*
    *(delete (o.s) delete)*
    Don’t fire that thing in here!

    BUSHY BEARD
    Steer!

    Brett’s fingers touch an escape hatch. Camera pans back to Bushy beard panicked*(.)*

    BUSHY BEARD
    No!!

    He fires the gun and watches as Brett slides out.

    BACK TO:

    FULL SHOT OF A CLOUDLESS PURPLE SKY. – DAY

    BRETT V.O.
    Like I said,*(said: A whole)* a whole hell of alot. *(a lot)*

    INT. PLANET CANABIA HQ – THREE DAYS LATER

    Brett’s POV A blinding white light as he opens his eyes as the blurriness *(blurriness)* goes away we see a man, Alec, late thirties with dirty blonde hair and a scruffy beard.

    ALEC
    Good to see *(you’re)* awake. We were worried about you.

    Brett tries to get up. He moans. Close up of Alec’s hand on Brett’s shoulder.

    ALEC
    Easy there, son.

    BRETT
    What am I a horse?

    ALEC
    Is that the slang you kids are using these days? *(that was great. Seriously)*

    Tracking shot of Alec. Camera pans as Alec reaches for a pen like object on the table. He walks back to Brett.

    BRETT
    Great, if you don’t count the jack hammer in my head and my whole body throbb-

    Alec sticks the pen in his chest. It takes Brett’s breath away. *(be more descriptive: is it painful or relieving?)*

    ALEC
    There, that should help.

    BRETT
    What’d you do that for?!

    ALEC
    I just told you.

    Alec walks back to the table and puts the pen like object down.

    ALEC
    Do you remember how you got here?

    BRETT
    Last thing I remember I was-

    ALEC
    Yes?

    BRETT
    Nevermind *(Never mind, it)* it was probably just a dream.

    Alec walks across the room to get a chair. He pulls it up need to Brett and sits down, his legs warped around the hind legs and chest leaning against the backrest.

    ALEC
    Try me.

    BRETT
    OK, I was in the bathroom, and the next thing I know I was aboard a spaceship.

    ALEC
    Do you know who was piloting it?

    BRETT
    There was a- Wait, why aren’t you looking at me like I’m crazy?

    ALEC
    WHO was piloting it?

    BRETT
    Some guy in a bushy beard was telling a guy in a helmet to steer, so I guess he was.

    Alec reaches into his pocket and pulls out a piece of paper. He holds it up to Brett.

    ALEC
    Was this the guy?

    BRETT
    I knew he looked familiar. He was the one giving the orders but I think I met him before.

    ALEC
    Where?

    BRETT
    At a mall, I’m not sure where it is from here, but-

    ALEC
    A mall on earth.

    BRETT
    (sarcastically)
    Yes, because ya know, only malls exsist *(exist)* on earth*(. Can)* can I go now?

    ALEC
    That’s not a good idea.

    BRETT
    Look, *(my)* My mom is like super-narotic *(neurotic)* so if I’m not home by three-

    ALEC
    You’ve been out for three days.

    BRETT
    What?

    ALEC
    You fell ten thousand feet. Had we not gotten to you in time…

    BRETT
    If I fell ten thousand feet then how am I alive.*(?)*

    ALEC
    Our technnology *(technology)* here is far more advanced than what you have on earth *(as a planet’s name, Earth should always be capitalized.)*

    BRETT
    This is crazy.

    ALEC
    My name is Alec Rodriguez and I am a detective of the intergalactic police corps. *(Intergalactic Police Corps. And I’d have him say “Or IPC for short.”)*

    BRETT
    Thank you for saving me, Alec, but I have to go home.

    He starts to leave.

    ALEC
    If you go home, you may put your mother in danger.

    BRETT
    I’m sorry, *(is)* Is that a threat?

    ALEC
    No, but whoever kidnapped you might threaten them if you decide to go home.

    BRETT
    So then what do I do?

    ALEC
    Stay here and let me help you.

    Brett begins pinching himself.

    ALEC
    What are you doing?

    BRETT
    I’m trying to wake up.

    Alec pinches him.

    BRETT
    (rubs his skin)
    Ow!

    ALEC
    This isn’t one of your scifi movies, this is real. Now I don’t know why you were kidnapped, but I need you to stay here and help me figure it out. Just because you have cerebal *(cerebral)* palsy that does not mean you’re incapable of handling things like this. I know this is new. I’m an earthling like you so I understand what you’re going through right now, but I need you to pull yourself together.

    BRETT
    How’d you-

    ALEC
    Before our computer crashed, he did a scan of your body so we *(know or learned or found out)* everything about you.

    BRETT
    What do you mean *(“he”)* he?

    ALEC
    OH YOU’LL FIND OUT ABOUT HIM LATER. *(why all caps? Makes no sense)*

    BRETT
    Ever heard of privacy?

    ALEC
    In order to assess what was broken we needed to do a full scan everything else just came along with it.

    BRETT
    Stuff was broken?

    ALEC
    Yes.

    A Beat.

    BRETT
    So if you’re from earth, then how’d you end up here?

    Alec opens his mouth to answer when the camera pans over to the door. It opens and a boy in his mid-teens comes through. His name is Garret *(GARRET (Always capitalize characters’ names on the first appearance.))*. He looks at Brett with distain.

    ALEC
    Ah, just in time! I take it Benny’s back online?

    Garret looks at Brett.

    ALEC
    Anything you have to say, you can say in front of him.

    GARRET
    One of my contacts came here personally to deliver this.

    He hands him the papers,*(.)*

    ALEC
    Brave of him.

    GARRET
    This was taken about three hours ago.

    As Alec hands him the the *(double word)* papers*(.)* Brett notices Dante in the photo*(.)*

    BRETT
    Dante…

    F.G. SHOT OF Brett and Garret looking at Brett in shock.

    ALEC
    You know him?

    BRETT
    Yeah, we ride the bus together.

    ALEC
    (to garret *(Garret)*)
    Take Mr…

    BRETT
    Brett, Brett Aldmen.

    ALEC
    Take Brett with you to the bar and see what you can find out*(.)*

    GARRET
    I don’t think that’s-

    ALEC
    That’s an order- and get him some new clothes.

    Alec walks out of the room. Brett and *(Garret)* garret stare at each other for a few seconds.

    GARRET
    Well, *(let’s)* Let’s go.

  49. bretton 10 Jun 2011 at 4:49 pm

    Thank you so much! My mom said it sucked, (then again, she doesn’t watch much Scifi and reads it even less) I started the pilot on may 13th and finished on the 26th, so it’s definitely an early draft but I wanted to finally put these guys on paper in a ‘complete’ story. I’ve been working on the novel for years and it looks like a draft is finally going to be completed. I plan on sending it out to agents in August 2012 along with another novel that I have yet to write.
    About Dante:
    He is the villain, but he’s not the mustashe twirling guy that he seems like, You might disagree by the end of the pilot, but I wanted a villain that would challenge him both physically and mentally.

    If you don’t mind my asking, what is your disability? Do you think people who are not disabled will like this? No matter how you slice it, ‘Aldmen’ is a risky proposition due in large part to Brett and Dante’s disabilities. It’s because of that that I never imagined a show on anything other than a cable network.

  50. bretton 10 Jun 2011 at 4:57 pm

    Here’s Act two, you don’t have to edit it, I’d just like to know what everyone thinks of it as a whole

    EXT. PLANET CANABIA HQ – MOMENTS LATER

    Brett sees the planet for the first time. With the exception of HQ It is desolate. A triangular spaceship is off in the distance. Garret walks over to it and pushes a button on the glass dome.

    GARRET
    Until Benny is fixed, we’ll have to do things manually.

    BRETT
    So does Benny always control everything?

    Garret ignores him. Garret hops into the ship and Brett tries to climb in after him. He falls on his back.

    BRETT
    Ahhh!

    Shot of Brett. Garret’s hand comes into frame.

    The camera pans back to Garret.

    GARRET
    (annoyed)
    Get in.

    Garret takes his arm and with Garret’s help, He steps onto the haul and unto the dome.

    BRETT
    Thanks!

    He is ignored again. Garret steers the ship and they take off.

    A beat. Long shot of Brett and Garret. We zoom in.

    BRETT
    So… Is there any particular reason why your refusing to talk to me?

    A beat no answer.

    BRETT
    How bout a game?

    A beat.

    BRETT
    So you staring stoically at the stars, is that a yes or a no.

    Another beat

    BRETT
    (clasps hands together and rubs)
    Ok, I’ll take that as a yes.

    Brett scans the sky in front of him.

    BRETT
    OK, SO THIS IS A GAME CALLED I SPY. THE RULES ARE-

    GARRET
    I know the rules I’m just not playing with you.

    BRETT
    I thought you were alien. Have you been…studying us.

    GARRET
    No but other people did a long time ago. I thought that blabbermouth alec would have told you that.

    BRETT
    What do you say that.

    GARRET
    Just the fact that you’re here is enough to get our entire team in trouble.

    BRETT
    Why?

    GARRET
    Because people like you aren’t supposed to be here.

    BRETT
    What is that supposed to mean?

    A beat.

    BRETT
    Oh I see,it has to do with my disability doesn’t it? Well, if that’s the case then-

    GARRET
    It has nothing to do with that, it has to do with the fact that you’re an earthmite.

    BRETT
    An earthwhat?

    GARRET
    That’s what people like you are called around here.

    BRETT
    OK, besides the fact that that’s just plain weird, why are people like me called that.

    GARRET
    It’s because people like you only have one thing on their mind: Hate

    BRETT
    Well, we have a lot more than that-

    GARRET
    It’s because that we are as successful and thriving of a society. We learned from your many, many mistakes, many of which you repeat often by the way, and because of that, we became a more perfect society. When you had the model t, we had hybrid energy cars. When you guys finally caught up after what seems like an eternity, we got hover cars and not those poor imitations that you see in movies the real thing.

    BRETT
    Wow, so you mean like certain movies were actually influenced by the people here?

    GARRET
    Unfortunately.

    BRETT
    Why is that unfortunate?

    GARRET
    One night in the early seventies, A bunch of directionless teens decided it would be fun to go fly over earth. I Iguess someone saw it because a little over a decade later a movie with the same design of the car was released.

    BRETT
    Well, if it was over a decade later I’m sure it could have been any number of things that caused the movie to have a flying- hey we’re you talking about back to the future.

    GARRET
    What

    BRETT
    The movie was it Back to the future?

    GARRET
    I don’t know.

    BRETT
    I think it was. We’ll have to kick back and watch it some time.

    GARRET
    Let me explain something to you ok we are not friends. I can get trouble for even talking to you.

    BRETT
    Yeah, you can get in trouble I got it.

    GARRET
    I’m not done! Stop interrupting me.

    BRETT
    Only if you say please.

    GARRET
    If I’m not careful, I’ll end up just like those teens

    BRETT
    So they got in trouble for possibly inspiring back to the future?

    GARRET
    No they got in trouble for going near earth. They were sentenced to life in prison.

    BRETT
    Are you kidding?!

    GARRET
    It’s a capital offense.

    BRETT
    But why!

    GARRET
    People start asking questions then we get found ad then they’ll make deals with us to come to our universe study our people. We’d be like rats. Humanity is far too curious for its own good.

    BRETT
    I would think that is what makes humanity great, that thirst for new know Of course, you would think that, you’re one of them. Humanity has no direction in life and because of that they will never be anything more than a bunch of greedy arrogant sentient lifeforms

    BRETT
    Are you done

    GARRET
    I don’t know why I’m bothering its not like you care. You just wanna go about your days and I have anything you want handed to you.

    BRETT
    How are you a cop?

    GARRET
    What does that have to do with anything?

    BRETT
    Well I’m curious you seem to think you know a lot yet your only fifteen and a cop.

    GARRET
    In this universe you get a basic education, then go off and do odd jobs until you find out what interests you then you work on it.

    BRETT
    That simple?

    GARRET
    For most, yes.

    LONG SHOT of the ship as we see: Buildings sleek and cool. Tunnels and airways guide hover cars across the city. Switch to Brett POV up ahead several buildings resembling a rundown part of new York city looking unfurturistic.

    GARRET
    We’re here.

    BRETT
    Where is here?

    GARRET
    Ion Prime.

    CUT TO:

    EXT. JUNKIES POOLHALL – MOMENTS LATER

    The poolhall is a rundown place. Through the window, we see three men playing pool on a holographic Tracking shot of the ball as it fades in and out. A big burly man pounds on the table.

    BURLY MAN
    The damn table is on the fritz again.

    Camera pans to a man behind the counter.

    RED HAIR MAN
    Just give it a minute.

    O.S. We hear the door open. ~The red hair man turns to the door and smiles. The camera pans over to the new patron’s legs to reveal PROSTETIC LEGS.

    Camera pans up to reveal Dante’s face.

    RED HAIR MAN
    How longs it been? A couple months

    DANTE
    Where is he.

    RED HAIR MAN
    Where’s who?

    Dante struds over to the counter and calmly pulls a knife out of his jacket pocket and stabs it into the table.

    DANTE
    I won’t be asking you again.

    RED HAIR MAN
    Dante Dante it was just a joke. Why don’t you sit down and have a drink on the house?

    Dante swiftly picks up the knife and holds it to his neck.

    DANTE
    One cut that is all it’s going to take for you to bleed out. Normally I’m a fan of a quick death but for you I’ll make a special exception.

    RED HAIR MAN
    I dunno where he is, ok. He’s not here right now that’s all I know.

    Dante starts to cut him.

    RED HAIR MAN
    I swear, I swear.

    THUG#1
    Hey why donn’t you get out of here Ricardo? The man told you what you wanna know, so just leave..

    DANTE
    I’m sorry are you addressing me?

    THUG#1
    Yes… I am

    DANTE
    (sighs)
    I’m sorry Gentleman, I really must apologize, you see I’ve suffered a profound loss as of late and well, as I am sure all of you can tell, I’m not dealing with it in the best possible way.

    The doors opens again the camera pans up to reveal Willis. Dante walks towards him.

    DANTE
    (to the others)
    Well, if it isn’t the man responsible for the loss we were just discussing.

    WILLIS
    It’s time to go.

    DANTE
    Right just one minute.

    He walks towards the patrons

    WILLIS
    We have to go we’re late enough as it is

    DANTE
    I wouldn’t be too anxious to go if I were you. You and I still have some things to discuss.

    DANTE
    (to thug)
    Because you let me vent, I’m going you live…

    Camera pans to willis as the thug screems off screen. We pan back to Dante who is holding the now bloodied knife in his hand.

    Close up of Dante

    DANTE
    (to Willis)
    Ok we can go now.

    We pan back to the other thugs they look horrified.

    WILLIS
    Was alll of that necessary?

    DANTE
    All of that would not have happened if you hadn’t lost him. Why didn’t you go after him?

    WILLIS
    We did, just not right away.

    DANTE
    Therein lies the problem. What if someone spoted you.

    WILLIS
    No one did planet canabia is a deserted planet. The only things are dino spiders and demi-wolves. One of them probably picked up the body.

    DANTE
    Yes, but a body was not found correct?

    WILLIS
    Yeah but-

    DANTE
    Then the body is still out there and you didn’t look hard.

    WILLIS
    Like I said, there probably isn’t a body to be found-

    DANTE
    …because he may be alive.

    WILLIS
    (laughs)
    If someone falls ten thousand feet they aren’t likely to get back up again.

    EXT. EL GATO NEGRO – DAY

    Brett and Garret are standing in front of the club. Zoom in on Brett’s face, he chuckles to himself as he gazes at the holographic neon sign.

    GARRET
    Is something funny?

    BRETT
    The black cat.

    GARRET
    What?

    BRETT
    That’s what the sign means in English, the black cat

    GARRET
    (rolls eyes)
    C’mon.

    They go inside for the most part people are ethier smoking or gambling some look up at them and go back to whatever it is they are doing.

    GARRET
    Stay here.

    He walks away.

    Brett takes a few steps forward and bumps into someone. Kaila teens slender build, dros several dishes

    KAILA
    Sorry about that, I can be a little clumsy sometimes

    BRETT
    (helps her pick up the dishes)
    Trust me, I wrote the book on clumsy.

    A beat.

    BRETT
    Sorry I tend to say stupid things when I’m nervous
    (awkward pause)
    Not that you make nervous it’s just…
    (another beat)
    Y’know what, I’m just gonna stop talking

    KAILA
    It’s ok. If it’s any consolation I’m a little bit flustered too.

    BRETT
    How come?

    KAILA
    This is the third time this week that I dropped something so yeah…

    BRETT
    OH, sorry if I added to any difficulties-

    KAILA
    You didn’t don’t worry. So… I haven’t seen you around here before did you just arrive in the system?

    BRETT
    Yeah you can say that.

    BOSS O.S.
    KAILA!

    KAILA
    Sorry about that, it’s my boss I gotta go I’m kaila by the way.

    BRETT
    Brett, Brett Aldmen.

    KAILA
    Well, it’s nice to meet you, Brett, Brett Aldmen.

    She starts walking away.

    BRETT
    Hey I hope we ran into each other again soon.

    KAILA
    Me too.

    Brett is daydreaming and giving himself a nice back on the back in his head when:

    A hand clasps his shoulder.

    GARRET
    Let’s go.

    The camera follows the pair as they leave the club. When the ship is insight. Garret turns his head to Brett.

    GARRET
    You suck at flirting by the way.

    BRETT
    You were watching?

    GARRET
    All I can say is don’t get too comfortable,
    (opens the dome)
    Because if the stars align you’ll be out of here in the next few days.

    BRETT
    Gee thanks.
    (gets in the ship with Garret’s help again)
    Are you planning to serenade me with another one of your sterling lectures on why humanity sucks?

    GARRET
    I’ve spoken my piece all I can do is hope that this nightmare is over soon.

    BRETT
    So I’m a nightmare now, huh? Gee thanks for a second we were actually bonding over there.

    GARRET
    You and I will never be friends got it?

    BRETT
    Sure, whatever you say.

    INT. ION PRIME RUNDOWN BUILDING – AFTERNOON

    Zoom in on a door with chiped white paint. We hear two loud bangs

    The door goes flying into the camera. Immediately after, we see Willis- He just broke down the door. He walks in and Dante follows.

    DANTE
    So where is he?

    WILLIS
    He’ll be here.

    DANTE
    I thought you said we were late?

    WILLIS
    (looking around)
    We were.

    DANTE
    Then why isn’t he here?

    Willis is about to answer when they hear footsteps. Aerial shot of doorway. There is a man in a dark suit and short hair standing there-TYSON. He has a scar on his left cheek He is carrying a brown paper with

    TYSON
    Gentlemen you’re late.

    WILLIS
    You weren’t even here when we walked in.

    TYSON
    That’s not the point punctuality is important, especially on a momentous ocasion such as this.

    He puts the bag down and takes out three glasses

    TYSON
    So Gentlemen what do you have to celebrate
    (to Dante)
    The capture of a young earthmite perhaps?

    DANTE
    (looks at Willis)
    You can blame him for that one. I was out looking for pilot he hired.

    TYSON
    To pay him off I hope

    DANTE
    To kill him.

    TYSON
    (clasps his shoulders)
    Dante… You know better. Killing him won’t make a difference the earthmite is still missing and this excursion of yours has eaten away our buffer.

    Dante and willis look at each other quizatively.

    TYSON
    Oh you mean I forgot to tell you. We were ahead schedule but the pursuit of the earthmite has eaten away our buffer. I would have liked to have something to show for it but hey thats the way business goes right?

    WILLIS
    So whats the next step.

    Dante starts walking away.

    TYSON
    Just where do you think you are going?

    DANTE
    To go find him.

    TYSON
    (sighs)
    Did you not hear any word I just said to you?

    WILLIS
    Just drop it, Ricardo we have other things to worry about.

    DANTE
    Sorry but those other things are going to have to wait.

    TYSON
    No they will not.

    DANTE
    Sorry but I don’t believe that was part of our deal.

    TYSON
    Neither was the earthmite.

    DANTE
    If I don’t find him-

    TYSON
    Let me make myself clear. Any attempts to find him will be on your own time Do We understand each other?

    Dante has a smug look on his face as he walks out.

  51. bretton 10 Jun 2011 at 5:02 pm

    Brett
    I would think that’s what makes humanity great, the need for new knowledge
    Garret
    Of course you would…

  52. FotV/Annaon 10 Jun 2011 at 5:11 pm

    Well, there’s lots of room for improvement, but your worst issues are poor proofreading or the lack of proofreading. I’d flesh out the scene on the ship or try to connect it more to rest of the story. There are definitely major things that could be better but for a thirteen day draft, it’s not that bad. And it’s something that I’d like to see more of. Later I’ll try to help with the dialogue.

    I will admit though, I’m not terribly sold on the story. I worry that it will fizzle out after the bar scene. But what do I know?

    I don’t know, network executives and audiences could appreciate the originality and inherent complexities of disabled characters. There’ve been sci-fi/action shows and movies with disabled main characters who still kick but. Logan Cale from Dark Angel protected the female lead Max and this kid the bad guys who killed the kid’s family were after and he was in a wheel chair. Plus there’s all that stuff he did as a cyberjournalist/hacker fighting corruption in Seattle. Whatshisname from Avatar may have spent most of his time in a walking body, but achieved a lot even in a wheelchair. It’s not cerebral palsy but still. My point: let them tell you a disabled character is too risky a venture. Until then pursue it.

    I’m narcoleptic and severely bipolar. You don’t ever want to find out how severe. XD

    I don’t see why not. Even before I was diagnosed I appreciated disabled characters. Everything gets harder when you can’t run or use steps easily. Harder=More interesting. Besides, I’m not physically disabled, just mentally (unless falling asleep uncontrollably counts as a physical. It’s a brain thing).

  53. bretton 10 Jun 2011 at 6:10 pm

    Trust me, I knew as soon as I typed ‘The End’ that it was by no means a perfect pilot let alone a draft I would show to an agent. They’d laugh me out the door!
    Anyway here’s Act three if you’re still interested:

    EXT. PLANET CANABIA HQ – AFTERNOON

    BRETT
    So what’d you find out?

    GARRET
    None of your business.

    BRETT
    Alec said-

    GARRET
    That doesn’t matter, he should have sent you back where you came from the moment we found you.

    BRETT
    (sarcastically)
    Look just tell me what you found out so you don’t look bad.

    GARRET
    (looks at him incredulously)
    Well at least you got some conjounes

    BRETT
    I’ll take that as a compliment.

    Brett and garret walk through the halls. The camera pans to a big metal door which garret opens. Bellows of smoke empty out.

    BRETT
    (coughs)
    What is this place?

    GARRET
    (shouting)
    Kilo, you here?

    KILO O.S.
    Oh crap, oh crap, oh crap!

    Garret shakes his head and disappears into the smoke. There is a whooshing sound and the smoke disappears. As it does we see red velvet couches and a wooden table off to the side. In the center there is what can only be described as a giant computer similar to the one they had thirty years ago. The only diference is this one has more high-tech buttons and gadgets on the keyboard.

    There is an African American man in his teens. He has a fro and a comb sticking out of his head. He has a fetish for button-up shirts of various colors. This one is navy blue.

    KILO
    (to Garret)
    Thanks Gar,

    GARRET
    (looks at the computer monitor)
    So I guess Benny’s not fixed yet?

    BRETT
    (to garret)
    Wait, the computer has a name?

    KILO
    (to brett)
    Hey, don’t callin him that, I’ll have you know that if it wasn’t for Benny you’d probably be dead by now.

    BRETT
    Wait, what do mean?

    ALEC
    (o.s.)
    Benny’s the one who scaned you.

    EVERYONE turns to look at Alec.

    ALEC
    Keep working Kilo.

    KILO
    You got it boss.

    ALEC
    (to Brett and Garret)
    So what’d you find out.

    BRETT
    (motions to Garret)
    Ask him.

    ALEC
    (chuckles)
    I’m glad you two are getting along.

    GARRET
    (to Alec, points at Brett)
    Well, he was the one who was chattin up some girl.

    BRETT
    Well, you told me to stay put-

    GARRET
    Exactly, and you diddn’t listen.

    BRETT
    She bumped into me and dropped a few dishes I wasn’t just gonna walk away, It was the gentlemanly thing to do.

    GARRET
    Oh yeah, an earthmite, a gentlemen, sure,
    (to Alec)
    No ? Offense.

    BRETT
    Would you like me to tell Alec what you said on the way over.

    GARRET
    Sure, be my guest.

    KILO O.S.
    And, boom goes the dynamite.

    EVERYONE looks at Kilo, now

    KILO
    (to Brett)
    What, I heard it on earth somewhere?

    GARRET
    Fix em?

    Benny flashes to life. The screen begins flashing

    BENNY
    Oy, what the bloomin hell happened?

    BRETT
    He’s an austrailian?

    KILO
    (shrugs)
    I wanted to make him feel exotic.

    BENNY
    (to Brett)
    Nice to see you up and about mate!

    BRETT
    Who me

    GARRET
    (sarcastically)
    No the other earthmite

    BRETT
    Oh you mean Alec

    ALEC
    That’s enough

    BENNY
    Hey Alec, the sargeant trying to call should I patch em through?

    Alec pushes brett to the wall and puts his finger to his lips.

    Alec looks at Garret beat.

    GARRET
    (to Benny)
    Put him through

    BENNY
    Alec?

    ALEC
    You heard him.

    A man with quaf hair un his late forties wearing a formal uniform appears on the screen. He is frowning, typical.

    CORVIN
    I’ve been trying to contact you for the last six hours.

    ALEC
    Apologies sir, we were having technical problems.

    CORVIN
    I want an update.

    ALEC
    Garret has some information.

    CORVIN
    (to Garret)
    Well, detective?

    GARRET
    Willis Kramer was spotted at El gato Negro a few hours ago.

    CORVIN
    Did you catch him?

    GARRET
    No…

    CORVIN
    Do you have anything to give me?

    GARRET
    According to my source, Tech enterprises was mentioned. They don’t know much else than that.

    CORVIN
    Well, looks like your actually worthy of being my son after all.

    KILO
    (types on the computer)
    Tech enterprises makes military technology…

    CORVIN
    (to Alec)
    Do you think they are trying to steal some of them

    ALEC
    It’s possible, I doubt this is something that lowkey.

    CORVIN
    Alright, keep me updated…

    Corvin notices Garret is looking in Brett’s direction.

    CORVIN
    Is there something else you have to say Garret?

    Garret looks at him and Brett coughs.

    CORVIN
    What was that?

    KILO
    That was me, I’m getting over a cold.

    CORVIN
    (to Garret)
    Well?

    EVERYONE looks at Brett. The camera does a 360 shot of all three of them and their reactions.

    GARRET
    We found out Dante Ricardo is involved.

    CORVIN
    (raises eyebrow)
    Do we know to what extent?

    ALEC
    No, but he may be trying to make his mark.

    CORVIN
    Alright, I’m going to be sending over earpieces for all of you so this doesn’t happen again.

    ALEC
    Sounds good.

    CORVIN
    Let me know

    ALEC
    We’ll do

    CORVIN
    And Garret?

    GARRET
    Yeah

    CORVIN
    Try to give a little more next time.

    Corvin disappears

    GARRET
    Nothing’s ever good enough!

    ALEC
    What the hell were you thinking?

    GARRET
    I was thinking that maybe I should tell’em about your new pet project.

    BRETT
    (to Garret)
    What stopped you?

    GARRET
    I realized I would probably have to answer for it as well, so I decided to keep my mouth shout-
    (looks at alec)
    For now.

    Alec starts walking away with a scowl on his face camera pans to Brett.

    ALEC
    (O.S.)
    Brett lets go.

    Brett duitifully follows as the camera povs to garret. He is looking at kilo who shakes his head disapprovingly

    GARRET
    Oh, shut up!

    CUT TO:

    EXT. PLANET CANABIA HQ – CONTINUOUS

    Brett and Alec are standing outside. Alec is still fuming. His hands on his hips and his back turned to Brett.

    BRETT
    Do you agree with him?

    Alec only sighs.

    BRETT
    Look maybe it’s best if I leave…

    BEAT

    BRETT
    I know you only were trying to protect me and all but things are gettin way too much out of hand.

    BRETT
    Maybe you should tell the sargeant what’s going on, then maybe he could,

    Brett is cut off by a punch to the jaw. He falls back.

    BRETT
    (rubs cheek)
    Ah! What the hell was that for?

    ALEC
    (hand outstretched)
    You let your guard down.

    BRETT
    (Alec helps him up)
    What do mean.

    ALEC
    If you expect to stay here you’re going to have to learn how to fight. When you’re in the middle of a fight, always keep your guard up, never let your oponent have the advantage.

    BRETT
    I guess that makes sense but back up a second, what do you mean
    (dodges another punch)
    I can stay?

    ALEC
    (punches between every word)
    You are going to stay here and help us catch Willis and Dante.
    (he kicks him in the stomach.)
    That is of course assuming you wanna be of some help.

    BRETT
    (grabs Alec’s again)
    Of course I do.

    ALEC
    Good now block

    BRETT
    (blocks a kick)
    So how is this going to wor-
    (gets punched in the nose)
    Ow!!

    ALEC
    I said to block.

    BRETT
    I have CP Alec how am I supposed to fight?

    Alec knocks him down again.

    ALEC
    (grabs him by the shirt to pull him to his feet)
    Do you wanna stay here or not?

    BRETT
    Yea.

    ALEC
    (still holding to his shirt)
    Then get up.

    Alec walks back.

    BRETT
    I still don’t see how this is going to work, I mean I can’t even kick.

    ALEC
    (takes off jacket)
    Come here.

    Brett walks over to him.

    ALEC
    (puts his hand on his bicep)
    This is a muscle, with some practice you’ll be able to land punches and more importantly make them count.

    BRETT
    How?

    ALEC
    Well, lifting weights for starters.

    BRETT
    Don’tcha have a holodeck or something?

    ALEC
    What’d I say before this isn’t one of your scifi movies. We use weights.

    BRETT
    OK, what about my legs, I can’t run to safe my life.

    ALEC
    You’ve seen rocky

    BRETT
    Yeah what about it?

    ALEC
    What’d he do in all those training montages?

    BRETT
    I dunno, box?

    ALEC
    And?

    Brett shrugs

    ALEC
    He ran through the streets of philadephia and climbed up those steps. We’re going to replace Philadelphia for the terains of canabia and instead of climbing steps you’ll be climbing rocks.

    BRETT
    (laughs)
    You’re gonna have me climb rocks?

    ALEC
    Of course it’ll help you strengthen your arms and legs concurrently. Not only that, but by the time were done, I can guarantee you’ll know every nook and cranie of this planet.

    BRETT
    Why is that important?

    ALEC
    Think of it as home-field advantage if you ever have to catch someone here.

    BRETT
    (Sighs)
    What about my mom alec, what about my family?

    ALEC
    (puts hands on his shoulders)
    Listen son, until Dante is caught you are just.Going. To have to stay. Here. I know this isn’t an easy situation, but I’m not going to be there to help you all the time. You know Garret is in a bad way since your here and Benny can only do so much.

    BRETT
    (raises eyebrow)
    Why what else can he-

    ALEC
    That’s not important right now, what is important is that you put your faith in me. I’ll never give up on you, but you cannot give up on yourself, got it.

    BRETT
    No more excuses, now square up.

    CUT TO:

    INT. HEROES BAR – DAY

    Dante is sitting at the bar alone. O.S. A bartender can be heard arguing in Spanish.

    DANTE
    (speaks Spanish to bartender)
    Lo siento, Lo siento Un cerveza mas, ~por favor.

    BARTENDER
    (puts the drink down)
    PUNTO

    DANTE
    (breaks glass holds it to his neck)
    Que dice?

    BARTENDER
    (panicked)
    Lo siento LO siento Que los dios ~por favor!

    DANTE
    Los Dios no habes ahora

    WILLIS
    (o.s.)
    I finally found you.

    DANTE
    (Puts glass down)
    Un cerveza mas, pro favor.

    WILLIS
    Where have you been?

    DANTE
    Out.

    WILLIS
    Looking for him?

    DANTE
    What do you think?

    WILLIS
    Tyson isn’t happy that you walked out but he’s willing to forgive it if you bring him the pilot and the earthmite.

    The bartender puts a drink in front of Dante

    BARTENDER
    No Dinero nessessito

    DANTE
    Gracias.

    WILLIS
    Are you listening to me?

    DANTE
    Yes.
    (takes drink)
    Earthmite first.

    WILLIS
    There’s too many loose ends. If I were you, I’d go for the pilot first. At least we have some idea of where he is.

    DANTE
    Yes, well, you are most definitely not me.

    WILLIS
    What are you driving at.

    DANTE
    You are looking at this as a problem, I am looking at this as an oportunity.

    WILLIS
    You’re right this is an oportunity to redeem yourself.

    DANTE
    No you this is a challenge, you see if I don’t find my poor defenseless earthmite friend, who knows what the Infamous IPC will do to him if they discover his secret…

    WILLIS
    You weren’t talking like this a few days ago.

    DANTE
    Don’t get me wrong, I’ll be upset if they catch him because all that fun I was going to have goes out the window, but then again looking for him can fun too. It turns out you’re stupidity was a blessing in disguise.

    DANTE
    (laughing)
    I’ll tell you what because talking to you has put me an even better mood, I’ll go looking for the earthmite and if I find our wayward pilot on the way, I’ll bring him along.

    Dante walks out of the bar.

  54. bretton 10 Jun 2011 at 6:21 pm

    *I knew
    Gah, I have to pay more attention.

  55. BRETTon 05 Nov 2011 at 9:33 pm

    CHAPTER ONE
    For many years, mankind has asked itself the same question over and over again: What’s out there? Well, I have the answer: A whole hellava lot. I bet all you dumbasses are wondering how I came across this information. It all started when I was fifteen. I was running late as usual, so I hurried down the stairs hoping I wouldn’t miss the bus for the third time this month.
    “Brett, get down here!” I heard my mother call.
    “I’m comin, I’m comin-“ I replied. Suddenly, my shoe scoffed the wooden stairs and I tumbled down. As I landed, the smell of fresh paint filled my nostrils. I opened my eyes to see my mother standing over me, her short auburn hair and small hazel eyes stared down at me.
    “This is what I’m talking about.”
    I sighed and put my hand on the wooden banister to pull myself up. “Not now, mom.”
    “You’re not listening to me.” She said.
    “Yeah well, I got better things to do than listen to you drone on all day.” I turned and walked down the wooden hallway and into the kitchen to get my backpack. My mom and I lived in a small red townhouse about fifteen minutes away from school. Granted, it wasn’t the biggest house in the world, but after the divorce, my mom was insistent that I stay in the same school, so as not to bombard me with too much change at once. I guess she thought she was doing me a kindness. Trust me when I tell you, she wasn’t. I picked up the backpack and hoisted over my shoulder. I groaned.
    “Heavy?”
    I turned to see my mom standing behind me.
    “Yeah,” I replied, “It’s filled with all the homework I decided not to do last night.”
    She grunted as I walked past her back towards the stairs. I hung my backpack on the banister and opened the front door a few feet away. Then I plopped down on the steps expecting to just sit there waiting quietly for the bus. Unfortunately, my mom had other ideas.
    “Are you ok?” She asked.
    “Peachy.” I replied.
    “I’m serious, stand up.”
    I begrudging complied and held my arms out so that my body formed a T. She put her hands on her hips and puffed out her cheeks. I didn’t move.
    “Do I have to spell it out for you?”
    I took a deep breath and put my arms
    “Take your coat off.” She said, enunciating each word.
    I took my coat off and she began to look me over. First, she rolled up my sleeve and check for bruises there were none. Then she made me turn around so she could check my neck. There were none. After that, she pulled down my pants, and not just the pants ethier, to make sure my legs were ok. They were. I still don’t know why she pulled them all the way down. It’s not like my balls were broken or anything like that if I didn’t know better, I’d say she was checkin, the angle of the dangle.
    “Ok, can we stop now please?”
    “In a minute,” She said, tilting my hand back.
    “What are you doing?”
    “Checking your head for any major concussions.”
    “Alright,” I said, pushing her hand away. “Isn’t that something you check first and not last?”
    “Hold on lemme just-“
    “No,” I said, pulling up my pants, “I have to get to school I grabbed my backpack off the banister and pushed the screen door open.
    “Wait.” She said.
    I let the door slam shut.
    “What now?” I whined
    She walked over to the hall closet and pulled out a silver question mark shaped cane. It had a black rubber tip and the arch was coded with black leather.
    “Here, take this with you.” She tried to give me the cane, but I shook my head. I’m a gimp, not a cripple.
    My mom scoffed at me, she hated the C word.
    “Just take it,” She pleaded, “I don’t want another incident like today, or last week for that matter.” A week prior, my mom had taken me shopping at the strip mall downtown. We had a wedding to go to, so of course I couldn’t dress myself because y’know, I was only fifteen. My mom dragged me to a shirt rack and looked through them. After a while she held up two shirts. One was a red checkered shirt while the other was a red shirt with a black stripe going through it. I shrugged and she marched off to the check – out counter.
    I let my eyes wander then. It was actually a pretty nice place. The light refracting from the ceiling gave the whole store a yellowish hue. I saw a bald man behind me looking at a flannel shirt with thin blue and yellow lines going through it. A group of women a few feet to my left were laughing amongst themselves when one of them held a shirt to their torso that was far too small for them.
    It was then that I saw him. He was hiding behind one of the clothing racks, he wasn’t very well hidden. He was a tall man with a bushy beard and long blonde hair that fell all the way down to his behind. He wore a brown over coat.
    Bushy beard must have realized I noticed him, because he began to run through the store, towards a second exit at the other end. Without thinking I ran after him.
    “Hey hold on!” I yelled.
    Bushy Beard didn’t stop and ran through the other door. Before I could catch up I fell and a crowd formed around. A man in a blue shirt and had curly dark hair stepped forward.
    “Are you ok buddy?” He said.
    I looked up at him helplessly,
    “Buddy…”
    “Brett, you’re about to miss your bus.” Said my mom
    I turned around to see a small yellow school bus pulling away.
    “Gotta go mom,” I said, as I step out the door.
    “Cane” she said.
    I was already lucky she wasn’t trying to keep me home because of that fall I just took, so I went back inside to get the Cane and headed out the door again.
    “One more thing,” She said.
    “Mom!”
    She pulled my head close to her shoulder and kissed my temple.
    “I love you, have a good day-“
    I pushed the door open and started out again, “I know, I know.”
    “-and make sure you go to the nurse just to make sure you’re ok.”
    I never made it to the nurse that day.

    CHAPTER TWO
    It took me a few blocks, but I finally caught up to the bus, well almost.
    They’re supposed to wait for me I thought to myself.
    After a while the bus stopped and an African American with curly hair and a purple shirt came got out.
    Out of breath, I walked slowly, pushing my three legs forward despite the fatigue. Eventually, she caught up to me and offered to carry my backpack. I pushed her hand away. “I can do it” I said.
    As I approached the steps, I saw a heavyset woman with thick bifocals sitting in the driver’s seat.
    “Hi Ms.Betty,” I said cordially.
    “Hi Brett!” She replied with much more jubilance than one should have at Seven AM on a Monday morning
    I planted the cane on the ground and bought my left leg up to the first step and slowly followed that with the right leg and the Cane together.
    “Do you need-“ Candy began to say.
    “I…got this.” I said under my breath.
    Once I was on the bus I began my trek down the short aisle. There were brown leather seats sides of me. All but one were empty. In it, sat a boy with shaggy dark hair and big puppy dog, like eyes. He was dressed in all black and music emanated from his headphones.
    I sat at the seat parallel from him and allowed Candy to buckle my seatbelt, despite the fact that I could do it myself. After this morning, I just didn’t want to fight over something as trivial as a seat belt. After Candy was seated, the bus began to move again.
    “Hey Dante.” I said.
    No answer.
    “Dante” I said again
    Still no answer.
    Finally, Candy tapped him on the shoulder.
    Dante ripped his headphones off and scowled at her.
    “What?”
    “Brett wants to talk to you.”
    “What do you want, Cripple?”
    “C’mon Dante I’m just as Crippled as you are.”
    “You’re wrong about that.” replied Dante.
    “How so?”
    “You can barely get up the stairs and even then you have to use the cane. Now myself on the other hand-“
    He pulled his pant leg up to reveal a long metal leg jutting out from where his femur is supposed to be. I literally do not have a leg stand on, and yet you have with simplest of tasks.”
    “I thought you and I gave the short bus a good name.”
    “Not you, just me. I have to tell you though it’s a shame really, who have so much potential to be just like I am, I’d hate to see you waste it.”
    “What is that supposed to mean?”
    “You’ll figure it out one day.”
    “We’re here,” shouted Ms. Betty.
    Candy helped Dante to his feet and walked him down the aisle. Before He started down the steps, he turned back to me.
    “Good luck today.” He said
    As he walked down the steps, He slipped and fell to the concrete below before Candy could get to him.
    Our entire class was not permited into the building before the bell, so they all saw him fall and began to laugh.
    “Hey guys, look at Metallo!” said one.
    “Nice one, Metallo.” said another.
    Without thinking, I ran to the foot of the steps. Candy told me to stay put and helped get his leg on and get inside. Once I was off the bus the laughing stopped, it always did.

    CHAPTER THREE
    When I was in high school, no one ever laughed at me, like they did Dante. Everyone was nice. Almost too nice.
    Our school was a typical one. You had the Cliques (Jocks, Cheerleaders, you get the idea) Food fights, break ups, make ups, what have you. But when you came to people like Dante and I, people reacted one of two ways. Either they were downright Cruel, or they took pity on you and make you feel like a useless pile of Crap, even though more often than not they are just trying to help. Thing is, other than helping you out, they want nothing more to do with you. They won’t ask you to go out to restaurants, they won’t ask you to go movies, and hell would freeze over before they would ever invite you to parties.
    Don’t get me wrong, I used to try a lot, but after the ten thousandth “I’ll let you know.” I decided to back off. I usually just lean up against the building, watching everyone go about their lives. Another student came up to me.
    And here we go I thought to myself.
    “Hey bud, how are you?” He said
    “Can’t complain,” I replied.
    Cue awkward silence.
    Fortunately, one of his friends waved him over so he walked away. No good bye, but I didn’t really care. At least the torture was over. To avoid another episode like the one I just described I figured I’d try to sneak inside despite the fact that we weren’t typically allowed until after the bell rang. I walk in only to find a man in a crisp white shirt and black tie seating at a desk off to wall.
    Busted.
    “Back outside.” He commanded
    “Oh, c’mon Mr. Regan,” I winced.
    “You know the rules.”
    But you let Dante-“
    Did you not see what happened to him?
    “Of course I did, but I-“
    “The rules for Dante are the same for everyone else,” He began, if a student falls they get checked by the nurse.
    What is it with teacher’s lecturing about the same shit-“
    He glared at me.
    I mean stuff, over and over again, you guys are like a bunch of dogs with a bone.
    Mr. Regan raised his eyebrows and scoffed at that last one. Yeah I was friggin roll today.
    Look I didn’t mean it like that all I’m saying is how many times can we learn about mean median and mode? It gets old after the ten thousandth time.
    First of all some students, especially yourself need a review, second of all that reminds me, I spoke to your dad about your math scores.
    I gawked at him. “You mean to say,” I said, “that he actually answered your calls?”
    The thing about my dad is, he’s not the best role model in the world. He doesn’t take care of himself, wasn’t the greatest husband, and barely acknowledges that I exist.
    A few weeks ago, I was over his house. My mom told me I was supposed to ask dad if he can pay for half of math tutoring because it’s my ‘responsibility’ crazy, right. Now here’s the part that always gets me.
    He lives in a huge house. I’m not talkin’ playboy mansion-sized house but pretty big just the same. I walked across the wooden floors of his house and into the computer room. He sat at the computer table shoveling spaghetti and meatballs into his stomach, while watching sports.
    Hey dad
    What’s up bud?
    I know everybody calls me bud.
    I’ve been having alotta trouble in math lately…
    Suddenly, my dad gets up and cheers.
    “Yeahhhhh!” He yelled.
    The bowl falls and gets all over the floor.
    “Sonuva-“
    “Dad?”
    “What, bud,” he said, aggravated, “I’m busy here.”
    Well I was just-
    “Hold that thought, can’t you go get some paper towels first?”
    Yeah, sure I replied walking out.
    Most times my dad is more concerned with the game than me, aso I have to admit that I was impressed Mr. Buzzkill over there was about to get through to my dad.
    Look Brett, said Regan The bottom line is your math skills need work, so your dad said he’d look into getting you a tutor.
    You mean he said he’d tell my mom to do it.
    Regan sighed. “Look, you need to get back outside.”
    “Look, I wasn’t gonna use this, but I fell today and my mom said I should go to the nurse when I go to the school.”
    “Nice try.”
    “Do you wanna call and ask her?”
    “Fine go,” He said waving me off.
    With that, I darted off to the left and went to the bathroom.
    As I stood at the urinal I felt a pair of hands grab my face.
    The next thing I knew, I was waking up, freezing. I looked around me. The ground beneath me was cold and slippery a reddish hue refracted off of the lights of this weird. I felt myself slid to the left and saw two men sitting a few feet from blocking a various assortment of the colorful buttons. One was dressed in all black and a translucent blue helmet on the other was more familiar. It was the man with the bushy beard. He noticed I was awake. He stood up.
    What’s up said a muffled voice emanating from the helmet.
    “Be quiet, the kid’s awake.”
    “Oh shit what to do we do?”
    “You can be quiet for starters.”
    “He’s gonna kill us.”
    “Everything will be fine.” He walked toward me. I started looking around the place, looking for an exit.
    “Be careful man, we don’t wanna-“
    The entire place started shaking again.
    “You idiot,” said Bushy beard, “Pay attention!”
    “Sorry”
    The man with the bushy beard scowled at him and turned his attention to me with a long toothy grin.
    “Don’t worry kid, in a few minutes it won’t matter what you’ve seen here today because in all likelyhood you’ll be dead.”
    With that, he lunged at me I slid to the other side of the place and hit my hand all the wall. Suddenly I felt a cool breeze collide with the back of my neck. I heard one of them say something about an escape hatch and then I just…fell. It was as if I was on a slide and the sandbox was twenty thousand feet below.


    CHAPTER FOUR
    I couldn’t breathe.
    It felt as though I was drowning and no one was coming to get me. Suddenly, I saw a light. Great, I was going to die a virgin. The light I thought I saw turned into a dip bulb hanging from a run down cement ceiling. Suddenly, it dawned on me: I was laying down. I felt a hand on my shoulder.
    “Easy now,” said a voice.
    I sat up and blink furiously my head was pounding.
    “What am I, a horse?”
    “Is that the slang you kids use nowadays?”
    I turned to see a man in a golden-brown suit with tassled dirty blonde hair
    Where am I?
    What’s your name? asked the man as he walked over to a table on the other side of the room. There was a computer like machine next to me. The feminine computerized voice emanating from it said ‘Subject stable.’
    “What the hell is this thing?” I said touching the screen with my index finger.
    “I know your probably very confused, but I really need to answer my questions.”
    “Look I appreciate you helping me out, but I’d really like to go home.”
    The man sighed and pulled up a chair that was in front of me. In half-smiled and stared at me for what seemed like an hour.
    “OK dude, you’re really creeping me out.”
    “I’ll tell you what, you answer my questions and I’ll answer yours.”
    I sighed. Looks like I won’t be going home anytime soon.
    “Well?” said the man.
    “I’m Brett, Brett Aldmen.”
    “Do you know how you got here?”
    “One minute I was taking a leak the next…” I stopped. It finally dawned on me what that place was and yet…
    “Yes…”
    “I was on a spaceship.”
    I looked up at his emotionless face.
    “Well,” I asked
    “Well what?”
    “Aren’t you gonna laugh in my face and tell me I’m crazy?”
    “Of course not.”
    “You’re acting like you’ve heard that one before.”
    “Did you get a good look at the guy who took you?”
    Suddenly, I smiled. It was so obvious I can’t believe I hadn’t figured it out yet.
    “Did you remember something?”
    “It doesn’t matter, it’s not like any of this is real anyway.”
    If you want, I can come back-
    I mean look at me, I said interrupting him, “I’m lying half naked on a metal slab, there’s a talking computer next to me-“
    “You should see the other one.”
    “Other one?”
    The man shrugged. “Can you tell me what they looked like?”
    “Well, one had a bushy beard and…”
    I stopped.
    “and?”
    “I saw him before.”
    The man shifted in his chair
    “Where?”
    “At the mall about a week ago,”
    “You mean the mall on earth?”
    I gawked at him. I really gotta lay off the shrooms
    “Yes, we are all on earth can I go home now. If I’m not home by nine, my mom will-“
    “It would be safer for your mom if you stayed here.”
    “What is that supposed to mean?”
    “Look,” said the man rubbing his temples You’re not on earth, you’re on the planet Canabia. This is my team’s hq.”
    I began pinching my arm.
    “What are you doing?”
    “Trying to wake up.”
    The man came over and pinched me himself.
    “Ouch!” I cried rubbing my arm.
    You’re not dreaming, this isn’t one of your scifi movies. My name is Alec Rodriguez and I am a detective of the Universal Police Corps.”
    OK, so if this is another planet, why do you look human?”
    “That’s because I am, but everyone else in the universe isn’t, or at least most aren’t that we know of.”
    “I’m confused.”
    “Most beings here look human but they’re not. They adopt most of earth’s customs but they’ll never associate with them.”
    “Why?”
    “People like you and me are violent.”
    “Well, one of them threw me out of a ship, how exactly are they not violent.”
    Alec shrugged.
    “So… why are you telling me this?”
    “I think you can help us.”
    “Help you do what?”
    “Solve the case of course.”
    “Look, I highly doubt I’d be of any help to you.”
    Alec walked over to the machine beside the metal slab and pushed a couple of buttons. They beeped as he did so. The voice from before proclaim that it was powering down. He walked back over to his chair. “You shouldn’t let your disability hold you back.”
    “I don’t think you…”
    I stopped. This day just keeps getting weirder by the second.
    “How’d you…” I began
    “I’m phychic”
    “Seriously?” I asked.
    “No,” he replied chuckling to himself.
    A member of my team scanned you and was able to find out everything.
    Before I was able to ask another question, the doors opened and a man in a green jacket and tan cargo pants walked through he had a small but noticeable scar on his left cheek. His reddish brown hair was parted to one side and he carried some papers in his hand.
    “Garret Corvin meet Brett Aldmen” said Alec motioning to the man.
    “Nice to meet you” I said, trying to sound as friendly as possible.
    Garret ignored the jester and gave the papers to Alec. “Can we talk alone?” He asked.
    “Anything you need to say to me you can say in front of mr. Aldmen” said Alec as he perused the papers. “So what exactly am I looking at.”
    “I don’t feel confortable-“
    Alec abruptly bought the papers to his side and closed his eyes. “Garret, either you speak your piece or you leave.”
    Garret glared at me and turned back to Alec. “Willis Kramer was seen at a club on ion prime and he wasn’t alone.”
    I caught a glimpse of the papers and gasped.
    I took a few steps back. Garret and Alec looked at me. Alec looked back at the picture and then back at me.
    “Do you know Dante.”
    I said nothing, but the look on my face gave Alec the answer. “Take him with you, He told Garret, “he may be more help than I thought.”
    “But he’s, well you know…”
    Alec turned back to me.
    “Brett, you need tell me…”
    I said nothing and walked out of the room.

  56. Bretton 04 Jul 2013 at 2:33 pm

    CHAPTER ONE
    Brett Aldmen flew through the stars, his mind heavy with thoughts of the people who hate him, the people he had to ‘protect’
    Under normal circumstances, he would look out the tranluscent dome of his triangular spacecraft at the many gas giants and fiery stars around him, but tonight it just felt fundamentally irrelevant.
    Two years ago when he first arrived on the capital ion prime as a kidnapped victim, he had looked ino the sky and seen the stars and planets in orbit above. These days it all just made him feel claustrophobic. He was an earthling; or as they see him here earthmite. They have always seen his people as a volatile race who look for anyway to screw one another. He knew it was true to an extent, but he had known many good honest people back on earth, but when you have a culture whose primary frame of reference were people like Dante Ricardo, they aren’t easily convined otherwise.
    “Hey mate,” said Benny, the Australian AI of the ship.
    “What’s up?” Brett asked.
    “Stars and planets, if we were on one of those planets, the sky might be a good answer too.”
    He always took thing literally.
    “’What’s up is a euphemism Benny, remember? We talked about this?”
    “Oh yeah, euphemism, I’ll get it eventually then you blokes won’t have to- what is it called- bust my ribs”
    Brett rolled his eyes. “Close enough.”
    Suddenly a beeping sound began emanating from a very expensive and overly bulky watch like device on his wrist. He pressed a blue button and a small holographic screen projected from the top. A man with sandy brown hair going down his neck and stopping just passed his shoulders appeared on screen.
    “Where are you?” He asked.
    “It’s nice to see you too, Garret.” Brett said, his voice dripping with sarcasm.
    “What’s up Garret?” Benny said, Did I do it right mate?
    “You did fine Benny.” I commended him.
    “Hello, is anybody listening to me?”
    “No, we tend to tune you out.”.
    “Ok, well, When you two are done dicking around called me and let me know.” He made a move as if he was going to shut the projection.
    “Garret, what’s up,” I said rolling my eyes.
    We have a situation over on tragor.
    “Isn’t that the planet where all the food and liquid is made?”
    “Yeah, the keyword here being ‘liquid’ one of the coloniss here has a bar and a couple of patrons are getting a little rowdy.
    “That’s what Corvin is having us do these days breaking up glorified domestic distribances Correct if I’m wrong but didn’t we stop a nuculear bomb from blowing up electosis last year?
    First of all Genius, it wasn’t a nuclear bomb, it was a giant planet detonating bomb not unlike the one that destroyed your earthmite people 10, 000 years ago. Second of all it isn’t distribance, it’s a-
    Hence, the reason I said glorified.
    Just get over here.
    With that, Garret’s face faded and the projection derezzed.
    Alright Benny, you heard him, lets go.
    As we turned around, Benny began to sing.
    “Bad Blokes, what you gonna do, what you gonna do when they come for you?”
    He continued singing the same line over and over. Brett was about yell at him when his watch beeping again. He hit the blue buton. “If your that antsy to get in there just go in a break it up.
    It’s me.
    Brett looked at the screen a dark haired girl looking back at him.
    Hey kaila, sorry I’mm on my way to meet garret at a bar on tragor some idiots are causing trouble.
    After everything that happened last year it doesn’t fair that you guys are the ones breaking it up.
    Thank you at least someone agrees with me.
    Just hang in there, ok? I… I love you. Before I could say anything Benny said, we’re here.
    I gotta go I told her. I got out of the ship and looked around a few feet away was the bar called Scrappy’s, the sign was projected in bg pink holographic letters over the brick at mortar buildings off in the distance he saw some of the houses the clonists had built for themselves. Nice log cabin places. Garret came up to him.
    “’bount time.”
    Why can’t there be a simple hello.”
    “What is it with you and niceties all of a sudden.” He asked they walked into the bar.
    “I just asked for a simple ‘hello” Brett said, “You know scratch that, How bout a hey there, that’s an even shorter word.”
    “Look I just want to get this shit done.”
    He and garret looked around there was uproarious laughter everywhere a man was waving around a bottle of god knows what. He was speaking incoherently. Another man went after him and pummeled him until he was on the ground. Garret and Brett each grabbed a shoulder and pulled him off.
    “Get off him.” Thy said in unison. They did that a lot.
    Well, it’s about time you guys showed up, said a man in a cowboy hat sitting at the bar.
    Excuse me, Brett said.
    “I don’t believe I stuttered said the man as he stood up and put his hand on his hips. He was a few inches taller than the two of them. The alchol on his breath was palpable. “I believe they have a saying where you come from, ‘fuck the Police’ Yeah I know who yall are. You think you save a couple planets you get some respect around here but you forget that the police commissioner was killed while he was with you.
    Dante killed him not me.
    Yeah, you must feel so bad about your partner’s body being found on that desert planet, what it’s called canabian.
    You don’t what your talking about.
    Brett just leave it alone. Garret implored.
    “Explain it to me then?”
    Alright, Mr.
    “Calvin, but you can call me Mr. Hines
    Ok Mr. hines here’s what happened. Commissioner Mathison pulled a gun on me and dante took him down.
    So you say, but I doubt it very highly that’s the case. There wasn’t even a funeral nobody was able to pay their respects cept to a can with his picture on it now you tell me, Mr. Aldmen is that fair, is that justice. Sounds more like Injustice if you ask me? What about yall?” he said looking around the room does that sound like justice to you?
    “No!” they all cried in unison let’s get these earthmites.
    “Now look what you’ve done.” Garret muttered.
    “I had to defend myself G.” Brett whispered back.
    “I told you not to call me that.
    An old man charged forward and brett negetaed his attack and got him in a head lock. He threw him down a second later when another came at him he dodged a punch and grabbed the guys wrist twisting it until it broke. He blocked and punched more guys and it went o like this for another ten minutes. The whole time Calvin hinds just sat at the stool and ordered more drink.
    Finally, Brett and garret had had enough and took out their guns.
    Remember, don’t shoot him there unarmed and-
    One of them began running towards him again and Brett shot at his feet.
    What did I just tell you.
    I shot at the floor in front of him.
    Look again dumbass.
    The man was hopping on one leg and holding his wounded foot with the other.
    I swear I was aiming for the floor.
    Uh huh, let’s go.
    Garret tossed a few dollars on the counter for the bartender and walked out of the bar. Brett followed
    “I swear I was aiming for the floor sometimes my visual perception gets the best of me. It’s part of my cerebral palsy, sometimes I-“
    “Look, don’t go blaming your disability as the reason for you being an idiot. We’ve been doing this for two years now and you have been fine. You made a really bad judgemet call and you have to own up to it.”
    “There you go see was that so bad?”
    “I’m the only one left who can try and fix once what’s wrong. When the president kept me on the force he said I was a start not an end. I need to figure out how to get to the middle.
    So your solution is to talk to a guy who’s in the middle calling you who is clearly not ready to hear you anyway.
    Tell him about kaila mate benny told brett.
    What’s going on with kaila.
    Nothing. Said Brett rolling eyes.
    What is it.
    “She said ‘I love you’”
    “So, haven’t you two said that before.
    Yeah, but we haven’t really spent a lot of time together and we’ve been busy. I felt like she’s just saying it to say it.
    Welcome to relationships.
    Brett raised his eyebrow. What do you know about relationships
    “I do have a life outside of wiping your ass, y’know.”
    Really, you’ll have to tell me about sometime.
    No I really don’t, Sorry I was so edgy before, believe it or not I’m just as pissed as you are about getting the short end of the stick all the time.
    Can I go? The patron muttered.
    I’ll take this guy home.
    How do you know he has one.
    I checked just before the fighting started. He started walking away. Say hi to Alec for me he said without turning his head. That’s where you were going before I called you right.

  57. Elecon 06 Jul 2013 at 12:30 am

    Whoa, there’s a lot here. I’ve read a bit but it’ll take a while for me to have a look through all of it.

  58. Bretton 06 Jul 2013 at 6:58 am

    No problem. Take your time! (by ‘a lot here’ do you mean a lot that sucks or am I reading too much into it? lol )
    Either way, thanks a lot. Really appreciate you taking the time!

  59. B. McKenzieon 06 Jul 2013 at 8:45 am

    “By ‘a lot here’ do you mean a lot that sucks or am I reading too much into it?”

    1) I’d generally recommend being quietly confident.
    2) When someone says 4,500 words is a lot, I would assume they’re only commenting on the length. It’d take me at least 2-3 hours to read and comment on 4,500 words.

  60. Bretton 06 Jul 2013 at 10:50 am

    B.mcKenzie
    “When someone says 4,500 words is a lot, I would assume they’re only commenting on the length”
    I figured. But as I’m sure you remember, this has been a pet project of mine for years.
    I just finished my thesis on gangster movies so with every other project I’m pretty zen. Had to do a “Macbeth in space” short story for class recently (don’t ask, lol) and just focused on the words on the page and making them the best they could be. Got an 87. Would it be alright if I send you a a chapter of the new novel I’m working on?
    Thanks.
    P.S. Where are you at with taxman must die? Hope to read it soon!

  61. Elecon 07 Jul 2013 at 12:18 am

    “(by ‘a lot here’ do you mean a lot that sucks or am I reading too much into it?”

    Yup, I’d say so :). From the quick glances I had, it seems really good, and there were some great sections later on.

    “Where are you at with taxman must die? Hope to read it soon”

    Same here. I love the idea of it and the five sample pages were ridiculously funny. Also, just a general thanks for whoever’s been visiting my website daily from this site, whoever you are.

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