Kafka had great starts, and when he got around to them, great endings, but to be honest I was never a big fan of the middles, which can err on the side of droning existentialist claptrap. Some of his short stories get over this problem: after Stephan Donaldson included "In The Penal Colony" in a collection, I read it quite a few times, and keep returning to it. Metamorphosis, on the other hand, has its most compelling sentence at the very beginning, and descends from there, in my overblown opinion. So what better idea than to structure a story of my own around it? Not that the big K is to blame for my rubbish. A Kafka limerick from a few years ago:
There once was a writer named Franz
Who made quite meticulous plans
To destroy all his scribblings
At his death, but some quibbling
By his publisher saved them for fans.
On the responses: Well, fuck. At least it tried, said fleece: let me just slash my wrists now. Some fairly late, appreciated, possibly pity-, votes came in saving me from a WFC pants run around the pool table, but it wasn't exactly a stellar performance. Compoundingly, at time of posting, I actually felt pretty good about this one. Still do, a bit. There's some critical eyes of worth here though, so I suspect in three or six months time I will reread and realise what dross it is. Maybe even why.
2+3: accidentally exquisite timing running this while my wife is on the other side of the world. Talk about don't mention a hippopotamus.
The original concept was for the binary fission to flower out of poor Greg's grotesquely swollen dick. There was also an extra scene where he visited a sleep deprived, gorgeous and dismissive female intern at an emergency room, and left with antibiotics and embarassment, choosing to ignore the continuing changes. I turned away from this whole line, for two reasons. Firstly it's a lousy place to split a human body in two. People may be symmetric about a line going from nose to belly button but the resulting twins would only end up with one leg each. I stopped believing in it. Secondly it's a pretty boring reversal of female pregnancy. It seemed too obvious. Also he should have been fatter if he was splitting into a full grown twin. I guess he could have just been really dehydrated.
The sex scene is a bit disconnected without this though, in fact the whole story is jumpy, as toxicfur pointed out. I left the scene in for the dispassion. It's thematically linked, to me.
I never really considered making the main character female. One for the amateur psychoanalysts in the audience, as if this whole wfc hasn't already given you years of material to chew on.
persimmon: Bad Ash? I don't get it?
Kellnerin: I forgot about Diaspora, short memory I guess.
2+3: Now I can have the blurb: "Mentioned in the same breath as Heinlen" ...
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