Tuesday, February 27, 2018

A Curse Upon Our Toes: Part 2

This is a continuation of the blog post, A Curse Upon Our Toes (click the link to read it). Otherwise, this post might not make any sense. Well, in all honesty, I can’t guarantee it’ll make sense anyway, as it’s about a sorcerer with a magic accordion who cursed someone with generational toe-funk. So, yeah . . .

I needed to find the descendent of the sorcerer and defeat him if I ever wanted to cure my toenail and thus be able to wear sandals in public without causing a panic. I had no idea where to start.

First, I tried the internet, where searching for ‘sorcerer with accordion’ didn’t get me any hints. Yes, I did this. I then decided to try a music store, assuming that the sorcerer would need to get his accordion oiled occasionally.

NOTE: I have no knowledge of accordions. I don’t know if you oil them, tune them, set them on fire, or put them in a warmth bath with a glass of wine while playing smooth jazz. In all honesty, I keep spelling it ‘accordian’ and only fix it because Word has trained me to react when the little red line appears under things.

I strode into the music store, potato in hand, and made a bee-line to the kempt young man at the counter.

He glanced up. “Hi, how can I help you?”

“I’m looking for the descendent of a sorcerer in possession of a magic accordion. Do you know anything?”


I leaned against the counter, placing my potato between us. “Long story short, a sorcerer put a curse on my family and I have to break it. His descendent has his accordion and I need to wrest it from him. What do you know?”

The young man seemed confused. He kept looking from me to my potato and back again.

“Ignore the potato.” His name-tag said ‘Jeff.’ I wasn’t sure if that was the name of his name-tag or his name, so I let it slide.

“I don’t really-“

I leaned in and slid the potato a few inches towards him. “Don’t play games, kid, I wasn’t born yesterday. Though if I was, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.”

“Sir, I think you’re going to need-“

“What’s your name?”

He pointed at his name tag. “Jeff.” It made sense.

“Okay, Jeff. You’re playing hard ball. I can respect that.” I stuck my hand in my pocket. “I gotta fistful of Abraham Lincolns here. You tell me what you know, they’re yours. What do you say?”

“Abraham Lincolns?”

“Yeah. Sixteenth President of the US. About seven-feet tall, if you count the hat.”

Jeff glanced around. “So, if I tell you what I know, you’ll give them to me?”

“That’s the deal.” I spun the potato around.

Leaning over the counter, Jeff dropped his voice. “Well, you see . . . “


Jeff pointed at the sign behind him. “This is Guitar Land. We don’t deal in accordions.”

I frowned. “Good point.” I picked up my potato. “I guess I’ll be going.”

“Wait,” Jeff held out his hand. “I told you what I know.”

With a sigh, I pulled my hand out of my pocket. “I guess you did, Jeff. I guess you did.” I dropped seven pennies into his palm. Jeff stared at the pennies. I stared at Jeff. I don’t know what the potato stared at.

“These are pennies,” Jeff said.

“And they’ve got Abraham Lincoln on them.” I shrugged. “I spent all my money on the potato.”

Look for the continuation in a couple weeks.



Anonymous said...

Welp, I finished up Art. Great book, a real page turner! I was the one that left the review that said, "This reads like a cross of classic fantasy and Terry Pratchett, I highly recommend it if you're in the mood for something light."

I know it puzzled me the last time something I wrote reminded them of "classic scifi". I mean, that's good, I suppose. No one calls "crap they hated" "classic" but what does it mean? I googled classic scifi and our all seeing digital overlord was willing to suggest I might be interested in anything from Frankenstein (written in 1818) to "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep" (Written 1968). It's hard to imagine that 150 year sweep of history really has a -distinct- style.

So, by "classic", what I meant was Art isn't a particularly conflicted hero, he know roughly what he wants (a girlfriend!) and he pursues that. This doesn't really change across the story. The structure of the plot also reminded me of the wave of authors who wrote their novels about people going from place X to place Y and dealing with problems between. Lawrence Watt-Evans with the Lords of Dus, The Elenium by David Eddings - that sort of thing.

It reminded me of Pratchett in terms of humor because it mostly focused on entirely surreal things happening, or cultural/behavioral nuttiness, and the main character being the straight man. Which, of course, shows up a lot in Diskworld.

I look forward to your next book. I fully plan to stay in tune with your progress by following this block and reading about your toes. ;-)

Jason Janicki said...

Hey, thanks for the comments and the review! I really appreciate that you took the time to write that up. Sometimes, I feel like I'm writing in a vacuum, where I put things out and am left to wonder if people liked it or not, so it made my day to read your comment.

I am, obviously, a huge Pratchett fan, so being told I remind someone of Pratchett is a great compliment :)

My next book, The Glaring of Cats, will be out in March, once the cover is done, so I hope you'll give it a read and let me know what you think.


Anonymous said...

For what it's worth, I know of some hobbyist forums where you can get a lot of feedback on short fiction. Of course, you don't make any money doing that but I find it to be worth it to have the opportunity to talk about my ideas.

Well.... and *I* never got around to trying to sell any stories anyway. Contacting agents or editing something enough to publish it feels suspiciously like work. ;-) Kudos for doing that!

Jason Janicki said...

I used to belong to a writer's group I found on Meet-up. I've tried a couple over the years and they're hit-or-miss for me. Some are too nice and others too flaky. Like Goldilocks, I need one that's just right.

Thanks! I tried the traditional publishing route, but couldn't find any agents interested in Art, so I figured I'd do it myself. It's harder, for sure, but it is nice to have full control and ownership over my stuff.