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About Deviant Member MattMale/United States Recent Activity
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(Contains: strong language and ideologically sensitive material)
Get close to me.

They’ll never see us. They’ll never smell us. They’ll never hear us. They’ll never touch us.

We blend into the background like shadows. When the moon lights up, we’ll stretch our tiny fingers until they cover the next five miles.

If they find me, I want you to get away.
Run across my shadow. Climb over the ruins and escape the ghouls. Dive off my fingertips into a lake too deep to see the bottom. I promise to keep my arms in the air as long as it takes. I’m sweet that way, baby.

They walk along the bottom. They float on the top. Stay forever in the middle. Breathe in the last of my hope. It will keep you alive beyond reason, even as it stains the whites of my eyes.

If you shine a flashlight into your eyes, you can see your insides. If your insides are white, that means you’re dying. No, it’s too late for your soul. Talk like that just curls my toes. Yes, I’m cold too. Take off your fucking clothes, you bitch. I died for you, and this is the thanks I get. Typical.

We ran out of food yesterday, so I carved my arm off at the elbow. You can wipe off the blood if you really want. You already have all my diseases.
Sense Offense
I really like this one, even if I'm not entirely sure where it came from. This one is my entry for the contest by :iconwriters--club:. The theme is closeness, and like many of my works, it doesn't always work out like it should.
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Even if you ask the average reader, nevermind the average person on the street, what they think of as horror literature, you're still going to get the same names. Stephen King will be the first out of their mouths, then maybe Anne Rice, and then they'll start listing the authors behind the Universal monsters, Bram Stoker, Mary Shelley, maybe H.G. Wells. Regardless of the names, the “horror” part of the genre usually comes from a tangible threat, be it monster or serial killer.

But if you ask them what actually scares them, most people won’t say “murderers”. Things that scare people the most: heights, being alone, and the dark. What do these have in common? Uncertainty. People fear uncertainty more than anything. You find yourself in a room with Jason Voorhees, you know what comes next, grisly as it might be, but it is nowhere near as terrifying as finding yourself in that same room with a door that shouldn’t be there.

There’s been volumes written about Mark Z. Danielewski’s postmodern nightmare House of Leaves, as one would expect from a book that is almost fifteen years old. Yet despite having read it several times, I seem to pick up new clues and new insights into the story that makes up what continues to be my favorite book of all time. Every read sends a wave of the same fears through me, even as I know exactly when the pages will become living organisms. I descend into the same darkness as Will Navidson, the same darkness that swallowed Holloway and took Zampano’s eyes.

In that darkness, there is constant shift. What boundaries you think exist, don’t exist. The length of the rope might be static, but the length of it required to reach the bottom is so great that sound is swallowed up. When you catch a glimpse of something that you can almost make out, like Holloway poised and firing from down the hallway, ending a life between two frames of 8mm, it’s immediately obscured by door after door after door. That uncertainty is always there, Danielewski reminds us through Johnny Truant, even and especially when we can’t see it.

The world of House of Leaves is one where reality and fantasy blur. The Navidson Record is false, but the Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph of Delial is very real, as stark as it is described, and it serves as a poetic epitaph for its photographer Kevin Carter. As for Carter, the real-life torment that drove him to an early grave becomes the driving force behind Will Navidson’s explorations. They lead to not his death, but the deaths of three others, one of whom is his own brother.

What truly startles me, beyond the fear of whatever lurks in the dark, are the connections between characters whose connection defies logic. The most unsettling is found in the Whalestoe letters, where Johnny’s mother becomes more and more disconnected from reality, unable to determine who the staff of the hospital are, and whether she is being routinely abused, or given space to recover. In one of the letters, she reaches beyond Johnny, to Zampano himself, and asks him about loss.

There are a series of mazes here in which the reader can get trapped. There’s the literal maze that exists beyond logic in the house, the labyrinth which may or may not have its own brazen bull wandering its halls. There are the mental mazes in which Johnny seems to find himself trapped, and the strange connections that lead from one to another. And there is the book itself, a disorienting descent into darkness that keeps you running around in circles before finally hitting a dead stop. And it is those moments when the reader suddenly finds themselves as lost as Navidson, as lost as Johnny Truant, that truly terrify.
House of Leaves: a critique
I was originally writing this for a submission about a book that changed my life. Unfortunately, the prompt got away from me, and it turned more into a review. Still, this being October and all, I'd like to recommend it to everyone as my favorite book of all time.
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Mature Content Filter is On
(Contains: ideologically sensitive material)
ATTENTION ALL PASSENGERS
IF YOU'RE ON THE STARBOARD SIDE OF ONE OF OUR MANY SPLENDID DECKS
THAT'S RIGHT TO YOU COMMITTED LANDLUBBERS
YOU'LL SEE A FAILED LIFE
NOT OFTEN THAT THEY MAKE IT OUT THIS FAR
IN FACT THEY USUALLY DON'T MAKE IT ANYWHERE AT ALL

a tourist laughs and stuffs shrimp into his sunburned face

Meanwhile, the doctor smiles as he grabs her blanketed toe. He gives it a friendly jostle.
"We've got good news for you!" He makes a gesture like a magician introducing his assistant.
Her mother speaks, trying to maintain her smile. "They're not gonna be sticking you!"
She looks at the criss-cross of needle marks in her arms. The bend of her elbow is spotted with dark red bruises over older ones, fading to yellow.
"No more looking like a junkie" jokes the teenage son, before getting elbowed in the ribs by his friend. The doctor chuckles, rocking back and forth on the balls of his feet.
"So when's the next round of tests?" she asks, noticing the immediate fall of the faces.
"Well, that's what we're saying, ma'am. You don't need anymore tests at all!"
"Won't it be great to not get stuck anymore?" says her mother. Her face scrunching up in a desperate balancing act.
"Why?"
The question hangs there, unanswered and unchanging
until the doctor closes the door.
Fantasy v. Reality
This was the result of a very long, dull weekend at work. Fantasies are fun. Reality is less so.
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Inspiration has been in short supply. Caffeine can keep the engine running, but I'm still pretty aimless. Cancer has me lost.

I'll be back some day. Hopefully before they bury my mother.

DD
  • Mood: Unheard
  • Listening to: Aphex Twin
  • Reading: Cat's Cradle
  • Playing: Dishonored
  • Drinking: coffee
Inspiration has been in short supply. Caffeine can keep the engine running, but I'm still pretty aimless. Cancer has me lost.

I'll be back some day. Hopefully before they bury my mother.

DD
  • Mood: Unheard
  • Listening to: Aphex Twin
  • Reading: Cat's Cradle
  • Playing: Dishonored
  • Drinking: coffee

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:iconrexivan:
RexIvan Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2014
In light of your recent troubles, it seems so grossly inadequate to wish you 'Happy Birthday'.  I almost believe that doing so might make you feel worse, and that's the last thing you need.  However, I think it's still important to let people know they are not forgotten.  I hope that there was at least a little happiness in your day today.   
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(1 Reply)
:iconrollingtomorrow:
RollingTomorrow Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2014   General Artist

Hello! :iconexcitedhiplz:

 

Thank you for submitting to our trimonthly writing prompt at :iconlive-love-write:!

 

Your submission has been featured in our group journal: live-love-write.deviantart.com…

The newest prompt is also included at the bottom of the feature.

 

Please add the article to your favorites to support your work and the prompt. La la la la

 

We hope to read more of your writing! :happybounce: Thank you!

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:iconflummo:
flummo Featured By Owner Jun 16, 2014  Student Writer

Thank you for joining :iconthewrittenrevolution:, we're delighted to have you with us. Welcome to the revolution. :salute:

 

This is just a brief message to ask you to please read our rules, so we can clarify anything that isn't clear before you start submitting your work (if there's any question or concern you have, we're here to answer).

 

To help our members get the most out of our group, we've created a tWR guide that lists pretty much anything from our current projects, to helpful articles about critiquing and asking for feedback that might be very useful for your future submissions. Feel free to check it out! :D We regularly post prompts and publishing opportunities for our members to try.

 

And feel free to add us on Facebook and Twitter. :dummy:

 

Thank you for joining! :salute:
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:iconpestilence-prince:
pestilence-prince Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2014  Student Traditional Artist
Ayoo B)
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:icontales-of-tao:
Tales-of-Tao Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2014  Student General Artist
Sailing the seven seas Hello! Your delightful work has been featured here: fav.me/d73v7rf. Have an excellent week!
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