2018 Writing Challenge:
a “contents” page for Dialogues: A Collection of Creative Conversations writing challenge
Dialogues: A Collection of Creative Conversations is my 2018 challenge. I wrote one short story in dialogue every week this year. As each piece was completed, I posted a little descriptions about them here and on my blog. Some of these pieces are also appearing in zines, reviews, journals, magazines, and anthologies. See this page on my website for a full list of published pieces, plus some more info on the challenge itself.
Now that my 2018 challenge is complete, I’ll be editing the stories before seeking a publisher for my collection of dialogue-only stories (probably sometimes in late 2019). This page will be updated with book links when available. If you’re interested, I’d suggest subscribing to my website where I post updates on new publications.
The main body of this page contains short descriptions of all the dialogues I’ve written in 2018. So check them out. You can also find a whole list of links at the bottom of the article, which I’ll try to remember to keep updated.
Thanks for reading, Bookworms.
A story that explores and plays with the problems and difficulties of communicating through storytelling and conversation in general. It’s a short and sweet experimental tale of misunderstandings.
A discussion about a digital photograph of a very desirable woman.
Based on a true story of incompetence, this dialogue delineates the travails of a man whose housemates don’t know how to put the fucking dishes away right.
This story will be appearing in the upcoming Flash Fiction Addiction Anthology.
A story about radical movements, martyrdom, and infighting. It’s an allegory that’s meant to be both appropriated and questioned in turn.
A dialogue about makeup and the value of a Live, Laugh, Love kind of life.
This one was also published as a stand-alone article. Give it some claps.
In this creative conversation a drunk professor decides to verbally colonize her male graduate student. #feminism #complicated
The title says it all. Half the dialogue is in Scriptio Continua (writing without spaces between the words). Experimental and surreal, Standoff is a trip you might not return from.
When a baby goes missing from a Russian orphanage for infants, tempers rise as terrible truths are revealed.
In matters of love, do you follow your heart or your brain? I don’t know either. How about we let them pitch their positions?
A Lover’s Dwelling will be appearing in the Iowa’s Emerging Writers anthology. You can pre-order it here.
Hiss, Squawk, Bellow, and Mutter are businessmen who speak exactly as their names imply. If you’ve ever worked in a call center, this story is especially written for you.
When things get rough in a relationship, sometimes you just need to resort to a little therapy. At least that’s what Tyler resorts to after his wife becomes cold toward him. But does she have a valid reason?
The life of Andy, what is it like? From the bloom of temperamental youth to the decrepitude of old age, is he truly any different from one decade to the next?
What is a rolling stop? An oxymoron? A finable offense?
All I do anymore is sit around remembering. . . I remember myself. Other people too. Places. Half-witted time. The kind that dances to the thoughts of other decades of one’s life. This story was also published separately in The Creative Cafe.
Tenor Jonathan Knudsen gets a final farewell from his choir chums after his funeral. This story appeared in Train Lit Mag on July 5th, 2018. Read it here.
Think of this story as a sort of literary puzzle. Once you figure it out, the story becomes completely intelligible. While it is fun to read the dialogue straight through to see the comic effect of apparent “call and response,” it is my intention that the reader puzzle out the actual conversations.
A dialogue between Medea and Jason on their journey to Corinth. This story was published in Lit Up. My appreciation goes out to them for publishing this story. The story was submitted as part of their April Flash Fiction prompt on the theme of transition. Please direct your reading and claps over at Lit Up.
A conversation about a directionless brother.
A man leaves his wife for an artificial intelligence dating app. You can also read the story as a Medium article.
An interrogative Q&A with questions and answers that tip the balance between death and reputation.
This story will be appearing in the upcoming issue of The Green Light.
The title pretty much reflects the story. Read my author note here before seeking out this story if and when it’s published. It does contain explicit and abusive language. The language has a purpose, but I still want a provide a trigger warning.
Two old friends meet up to relive their post-graduation trip to Spain.
Bookworms, have you ever had a regret? Have you ever regretted your constant regrets? Well, have I written a story for you. I’ll let you know as soon as it’s published somewhere, otherwise you’ll have to wait for the book.
The calm before the storm: a fight between God and Leviathan brews.
A short story told in cuts.
As ironic as the phrase “live, laugh, love” is kitschy.
A Bunny and a Fox dance at a masked ball.
In this dialogue, a woman drunkenly snapchats her friends while wearing the wedding dress from the wedding that never happened. A friend goes to visit, but the ex-bride to be won’t open the door.
This little metafictional tale is all about the author.
Exploring the fundamental meaning or lack thereof of life and the ever after.
More nihilism can be found on this meaningless blog post.
A young man‘s recently deceased father tells him to carry on his love of nostalgia.
Hayden can see the future and heavenly visions, but when he dies tragically young, it leaves the bereaved asking, “What’s the point of what Hayden saw?”
We will not be discussing politics at the dinner table.
A story about the desire to unplug and disconnect from the world. A story about locking yourself away so you can fulfill the true inner-you. A story about the pleasure and perils of becoming a hermit.
A dialogue of self-talk, self-healing, and self-destruction.
When your employer accuses you of pocket chicken . . .
A story concerning a talking dog and a group of children.
Chef Nip’s Nips is a Youtube channel devoted to cooking some dishes of culinary awesomeness. And on today’s upload, this Youtube star will teach you to make murumples!
A story exploring the relationship a girl has to painful memories of what she thought her mother said.
An old man tells the tale of his life to a young man, but will the young man stick around long enough to learn the twists of the old man’s ending?
What do you get when you mix a first date and an interloper who just doesn’t follow the rules of the road (or dating for that matter)?
This dialogue is comprised of several smaller dialogues between a fictional Melania and those around her. A dialogue as absurd as her Zara jacket, this is one you’ll want to read as soon as it’s published.
When three explorers deep in an ancient man-made tunnels find a creature that appears to be an infant, a three-way struggle ensues. Denise thinks it’s human and wants to take it back with them. Jacob believes it’s an animal and says that they should leave it. But Terry, he believes it’s an abomination that they must kill.
In this creative conversation, we find a world where a periodic wave comes crashing down on all who stay above ground. If anyone stayed above, they’d be washed away to oblivion. . . Or maybe that’s what they want you to believe. And if you don’t believe, what do you do? Do you stay out as the wave nears? Do you risk death to find a potential hidden truth?
Lacy and Samuel, two old friends who once had a romantic connection, get together for coffee to celebrate Lacy’s engagement. Things go well until lions are brought into the mix.
A performance artist lies on his back in the snow. Is this good art? Bad art? Fuck, is it even art at all? You can make your argument by leaving a response on the Medium article where I published this story.
A dialogue about the depths of enchantment. Two urban explorers enter into an enchanted castle but find not the dilapidated magical charm they anticipated. Instead, they encounter the enchanted remains of a decaying nightmare.
“Imagine if a giant god came floating through outer space and vomited on us, hurling all this fiery debris down to Earth.”
Two men who are taking out a hoarder’s trash find fossils, but regulations say they must toss ’em into the trash.
When two friends run into an evil Santa, hell-bent on mayhem and murder, they cut him down to size with a critique of the transgression Santa Claus trope.
A policeman tries to understand the otherworldly horrors experienced by a woman whose husband has been killed by a strange monster roaming the countryside.
This is a Q & A story. The interviewer, is trying to get to the bottom of a wave of child serial killers. Drugs to video games are blamed. But the truth may be more complex and conspiratorial or — worse — simple and endemic to the nature of modern society. This is just an interview; you’ll have to decide for yourself is the answer lies in between or outside these questions and answers.
My 2018 writing challenge is complete! I ended with 53 dialogues, which was one over the goal of a single dialogue for every week of the year. The plan now is to spend a while editing these stories before seeking a publisher for this dialogue-only collection of short fiction. Be on the lookout for new pieces published in print or online. Subscribe to get emails whenever a new piece is published. Thanks for the support, bookworms.
Are you intrigued by the sound of any of these stories? If so, you can find more info at my website.
A press kit can be found here.
Below you’ll find a list of published dialogues. Links are provided if available.
- Therapy: Public House Magazine ; (TBA). forthcoming
- A Lover’s Dwelling: Flash Fiction Addiction : anthology — Zombie Pirate Publishing ; (TBA). forthcoming
- A Man in the Snow: Medium.com ; December 01 (2018). Read online.
- Everything in Its Right Place : Iowa’s Emerging Writers : anthology — Z Publishing ; September 09 (2018). Order the anthology.
- Viagra for a Pariah: The Greene Light ; issue #3, August 15 (2018). Read online.
- Jonathan Knudsen: Train Lit Mag ; July 05 (2018).
- DigiSpouse.com Testimonial: Medium.com ; May 19 (2018). Read online.
- Medea Naked on the Golden Fleece: Lit Up ; April 30 (2018). Read online.
- Tarnished Time: The Creative Cafe ; April 17 (2018). Read online.
- 88 “Spice Up Your Date” Shimmer Palette: Medium.com ; February 06 (2018). Read online.
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About the author:
Randal Eldon Greene is the author of Descriptions of Heaven (Harvard Square Editions, 2016), a novella about a linguist, a lake monster, and the looming shadow of death. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in 3AM:Magazine, 34thParallel, Americas Emerging Writers: an Anthology of Fiction, as|peers, The Creative Cafe, Flash Fiction Addiction: An Anthology, The Green Light Literary Journal, Literally Literary, Lit Up, MonkeyBicycle, NPR online, Spelk, StoryFinds, Train Lit Mag, This is Writing, Unbroken Journal, VLP Magazine, and elsewhere. His typos are tweeted @AuthorGreene and his website is found at AuthorGreene.com