Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Contest at the End of this Post

Do you want a free copy of Zombie Haiku by Ryan Mercum? There is a contest to win just that at the end of the post.

Last night, Aimee and I went out with another couple (on a school night even!) and I had two martinis. TWO! Thanks to older, wiser heads, I also had a glass of water and some Advil before hitting the sack, so I'm doing okay. I can already hear the cries of "Lightweight!" and I will not shrug them off. I am a lightweight. Have been for the last few years. Funny how kids will do that to you...

"Gary Sump's Hidden City" is the story of the day at Everyday Weirdness today. I wrote this one on a lark while reading Secret Lives by Jeff VanderMeer. I highly recommend Secret Lives; I laughed and felt disturbed in equal measures.

So, for the contest: See that little dude in the title above? He's from a fairly famous painting. I'd like to give him a name. I'm going to let Owen, my five-year-old, pick from entries sent by my dear readers. The winner receives:

I've only read the book once, so it is in excellent condition. Also, there will be a little something for the first person to correctly identify the painting from which the little guy hails.

Happy name hunting.

Oh yeah...the contest entries must be in by Sunday (1/25/09) at noon (my time) CST.

17 comments:

Jamie Eyberg said...

I will call him Rufflefrump McGrumpy.

K.C. Shaw said...

I think his name is Blat. And I have no idea what painting he comes from, although I must say he looks oddly familiar.

Your story was, like, a whole lake of awesome creepyness! One of the creepiest things about it, really, was that the narrator was spying on the guy in the first place. Whole extra layers of creepy there. Well done!

Aaron Polson said...

KC - I like it creepy. What can I say? My real life is anything but creepy...

Rob Brooks said...

I really like that story. I mean REALLY like it. The tone, mostly.

I recognize your little guy up there, but can't place him. Let's call him...Sammy. (That's the name of a monster in my Devil's Food story that he reminds me of.)

Barry Napier said...

The painting is "The Nightmare" by Henri Fuseli. (Thanks, Art History 1-3).

And I shall name him Chester McCreepy III.

Catherine J Gardner said...

He told me his name is Pug.

Barry Napier said...

Crap...in my excitement of knowing the painting, I totally overlooked the story link.

Amazing story, man. The best flash I've read in a LONG time. I'm going back to read it once more, actually.

Catherine J Gardner said...

Yep, I did a Barry and became too engrossed in what the little guy was called and forgot to read the story...

I am so glad I didn't miss it altogether. You see, I'm compiling this list of my favourite short stories of 2009 for my end of year post (I like to think ahead), as of this morning there were 2 stories on that list (one from Postscripts and one from Fantasy magazine) - I just added a third.

Jamie Eyberg said...

Your story was world building on a shortened schedule. Very well done *shakes head and thinks of little red clouds with a slight smile*

Aaron Polson said...

I'm glad you all liked the piece. It was a fun bit of weirdness to write.

Can you imagine those littluns having a funeral? Could you keep yourself from watching?

I was thinking Rear Window a bit here...we are all peeping toms, a little.

Natalie L. Sin said...

Fergus

katey said...

Truly fabulous story, Aaron, loved it. You have excellent timing with your build-ups... that's a weird thing to say, but I notice it every time I read one of your stories. It makes me happy. I'll pass it round to my friends.

Also, I shake my fist at Barry for beating me to naming the painting. What good is this art history degree? None! Just like my mom told me. (Also: sleep paralysis painting! I've seen that little bugger at the end of my bed!) I'll be in India when you ask Owen what to call him, but I vote for Humphrey.

Barry Napier said...

Katey...I actually used to suffer from sleep paralysis. It freaked me out when I learned that this paiting was somewhat related to it. Creepy!

katey said...

Me too, Barry. I still get it now and then, and when I was a kid it was almost always a demon like this. Totally creepy, ha!

Jeremy D Brooks said...

Portnoy.

Dig the banner, by the way...

Robert said...

I think you should call him Larry.

And I really dug the story. Very well done. Though I do have one quibble -- if the narrator is seeing this all from the outside, how does he know about the one time Gary sobbed "in his bedroom with the blinds closed"?

Or am I missing something ...

Aaron Polson said...

Robert - I don't think you missed anything. You've hit upon the uber-creepiness of his neighbor. How, exactly, did he know what was going on in side Gary's house?

He has been known to use cameras...hmmmm?