Annabelle is nothing like the
women Ive insofar known and been attracted to; shes not a down on
her luck prostitute living on welfare checks in a socialist country, selling
her body, and drugs on the side, for the extra buck. She thrives in a ruined
economy, manages to make it despite Greeces disastrous climate.
What she saw in me, Ill
never know; like always, I on occasion attract a normal woman who
shouldnt be near me for her own good, and yet she sees something in me
that I cannot explain, nor comprehend.
One night, we sat in her small
apartment, overhearing the riots down on the street, rich boys playing
anarchists throwing Molotov cocktails to riot police squads getting paid less
and less to protect the public peace and end up getting their frustrations out
by beating pensioners and peaceful protestors - the only demonstrators they can
afford to beat up since the revolutionaries destroying cars and shops are often
the offspring of rich, influential people and thus, untouchable.
You know, George,
she said, sipping on her coke through a purple straw, I still cant
understand what you want to do with your life.
Nothing, I told
her calmly, then had a long snort of wine out of the bottle.
Yeah; I dont see
the point of living to work, to pay bills, to make money
interesting in all this?
Isnt there meaning
I dont know, she stumbled on her words, visibly taken
aback, being able to afford rent, bills, to live
By waking up at 6am
every morning, spent 8-10-12 hours in an office, daily, with supervisors that
yell at you because theyre angry at their wives, children, girlfriends,
and demand that you work overtime for the good of the company, while they
reduce your wage because we cant afford it, were
struggling, even though theyre driving expensive new cars, live in
three-story houses in the suburbs, and just came back from a two-week vacation
in St. Trope?
No, I sighed, had
another long sip, thats not how I define live
I dont think
Ive ever met someone like you, she ran her fingers through her long
hair. I mean
You just havent
looked good enough, I rebuked dryly. You havent been to the
right places; the shooting galleries, the gutters, the dark alleys. Thats
You write, right?
She asked, trying to evade the topic Ive just opened, while nervously
biting her purple straw.
Yeah, I nodded,
sullenly. Maybe, the one thing Ive ever known, Ive ever been
decently good at.
What do you write,
then? She insisted, pushing me to stick to the topic, despite my obvious
unwillingnessI drained the first bottle of cheap white wine, immediately
unscrewed the second - it was warmer - and had a long snort.
About my time as a
junkie, a cook of rock, a lover of whores, I lit a cigarette and in the
plume of blue smoke that momentarily arose in front of my face, I saw a single
pair of blue eyes staring back at me with disdain over who Ive
Of course not, I
chuckled, despite myself. Sometimes, I think its because of the
subject, you know? I have had editors reply to me with oh, we love your
style as a poet, or, we really enjoyed reading your work,
especially whatever poem caught their fancy, but, in the end, they reject
And I like to think
its the subject, that they just dont want to, or cant,
publish poems and stories implying the writer was - or still is - a drug-user
and dealer, but
in the end, maybe Im just shit.
Havent all the
great writers of the past been often rejected at first? For being too far ahead
of their time? She tried to encourage me.
Sure, I nodded.
And all the hacks in the world keep saying that to themselves to feel
better for the ever-growing pile of rejection slips coming their way. Everyone
thinks theyre great; only true geniuses understand theyre shit and
give up before they further pester the world with their false belief of
I quit social media
because every other person was a writer, a poet, an artist. Bullshit, of
course; granted, I hurriedly added because I saw the comment coming,
I also have that stupid facebook page; a huge mistake committed in my
younger, more naïve days, convinced by a friend whos a big believer
of social media.
Ive often thought
of deleting it and getting it over with, but
I guess, I dont care
that much to bother.
But, in this day and
age, you need a social media platform; otherwise, how will people learn about
Thats the major
problem. Long gone are the days of knocking on publishers doors; sending
your work to the big literary journals hoping for the breakthrough. Now,
therere so many vanity publishers - vultures making money out of
desperate, hopeful, talentless artists - that the big publishers and journals
can sit idly and watch, waiting for the one in a million breakthrough writer
that comes along, sells some numbers, and thus is a sure cash-cow for the big
In the meantime, anyone
can publish through a vanity publisher; that creates a legion of artists
thinking theyre worth something. When they dont sell, its the
readers problem. If they sell, they think theyre the next
Of course, the readers
are problematic, too
just look at what makes it to the top of all the
bestselling lists; romance, crime
whaleshit. But, thats how it
always has been
the reason the greats of the past were initially rejected
was simply because they didnt write what the common people read, what
Of course not. The only
thing that has changed is the number of platforms available to all the
hopefuls. Nowadays, its much easier for anyone to view themselves as
writers; you can take a laptop to a starbucks and churn out bad lines, awful
prose, meaningless stories.
therere no good stories that can be written in a starbucks; in a shooting
gallery, definitely. However, try taking a laptop to a place like that. Or,
better yet, try to take the man that will take a laptop to a starbucks to a
Hell be mugged,
raped, beaten, and murdered.
Outside, the explosions were
getting more intense; neither of us really bothered, though, used as we were to
riots. Her windows were tightly locked, keeping the black smoke and the tear
gas out, providing us with a serene environment despite the violent clashes ten
feet below us.
Why do you keep writing,
then? She asked.
got nothing else to do; nothing else I know how to do. Something compels me to
the page, even though I know its a losing battle, I shrugged my
shoulders and twirled the almost empty bottle in my hand - drained it, then
opened the third one.
You drink too
Yeah, I nodded.
Its the one thing that keeps me sane.
She brushed her long, brown
hair back, revealing the beauty of her face to its full extent; for a moment, I
remained silent, simply marveling her radiant beauty.
Why dont you try
to write something more marketable? Something that could be at the bestselling
For years, my answer to
this would be I dont want to sell out, I dont want to sell my
soul. Ive even rejected a publishing deal when they asked me to
change the ending of my first novel; they wanted a happy ending and I
couldnt provide it.
Now, however, Ive
grown wiser; Ive begun writing sex stories, publishing them under an
alter-ego to a website dedicated to erotica.
corrected her. When I write these stories, Im not myself. Im
someone else; someone that can write erotica stories without puking his
intestines out in disgust.
Fair enough, she
sighed in resignation. How does that go?
Well, good enough,
I frowned. Everyones a critic, obviously; some try to act smart by
pointing out mistakes, or things they think could be done better. Granted,
sometimes I use words with very loose interpretation, which may not be obvious
to many, but
Cant say I really
care; at any rate, a lot come back praising the stories, my talent, all that.
Im looking up publishers for the sex novel Ive written,
hoping itll at least help me make a decent living, give me something to
live on, to pay for the bourbon bottles I so dearly miss.
Have you read other
stories that are on this site? To see what other people write?
Ive tried, I
gulped down the wine, a drowning sensation suddenly overwhelming me.
Whenever I do, especially the high-rated stories, I see nothing but dull
writing; perfect little stories with no stakes, no heart, nothing but the dull
writing of a creative writing course taught by some professor who thinks he
Im not begrudging
them, good for them for being able to write stories that appeal to most people,
I just dont think that what theyre doing is writing.
Theyre wordsmiths with a well-developed craft. Thats all.
theyre the same people wholl one day win Nobel prizes; the same
prize once awarded to Hamsun and Hem will go to a wordsmith, who spent his
years studying writing, instead of living it.
though, I shrugged, a shiver crossed my spine and I numbed the pain with
more wine, its how the world is. Im not going to change it,
youre not going to change it, the rich bastards downstairs playing Che
Guevara are not going to change it.
You have an utterly
bleak view of the world.
realist, I fired back, the third bottle already emptied. I opened the
fourth, and last, and lit a cigarette.
I dont know,
George, she sighed deeply, staring straight into my eyes. I think
youre a pessimist, and
normally, I dont like people like
Normally? I raised
my eyebrow, my lips curling into a half-smile.
Yeah, she lowered
her gaze, her cheeks turning scarlet. I dont know, I
I slid closer to her, took her hand into mine.
Im not the first
one to tell you this, huh? She lifted her eyes and our gazes
I would have told you
that you were, once upon a time, just to
no, I then said, with a
broadened smile, youre not.
unique, she said with a sad smile.
No one is, I said
in a steadier voice, yet still leaning forth, brushing my lips against hers.
She kissed me; thrust her
tongue in my mouth, bit my bottom lip gently. My hands went under her shirt,
running my fingers along her back. Even then, during that fiery, first kiss,
all I could think of was that she was another story, another tale meant to
remain unpublished for eternity.
Three bottles of wine and I
could still go; fuck the pussies on that erotica site believing that a man
cannot think of sex after a long, hard-drinking session. They havent
truly lived, they havent been in the same bars as I.
They think life is the dull
little existence theyve insofar led, falsely believing theyre
experts. But, in the end, maybe theyre right; they need stories about
themselves, to make them feel unique, special, one-of-a-kind. Theyre not,
but theyll forever refuse to acknowledge it, adamantly rejecting the
horrible notion theyre not the true representatives of humanity, of
writing, of everything.
unbuttoned my jeans and I helped her out of her shirt; her small, perky,
perfect breasts were in my mouth, I swirled my tongue around those tiny, pink
nipples - as perfect as any womans Ive seen.
And all I could think of was
the story Id turn that night into, fucking while outside the Molotov
cocktails burned stores and cars, the riot cops threw tear gas and flash
grenades, people screaming, crying, seeing their cars and properties engulfed
in homicidal, genocidal flames, and I didnt care, nor did Annabelle.
We were fucking amidst the
destruction. She had it all, I had nothing, and yet, for a moment, we were one,
having everything and nothing at the same time; a fuck resembling a strong junk
fix and for a short while, the world made sense and Id forgotten about
the websites wannabe writers trying to impress with their
knowledge, or the wordsmiths getting published in New Yorker and
Sometimes, I write strong
lines, powerful sentences; most of the time, I write shit. I fail to create
memorable characters because Ive yet to meet anyone worth the term
memorable. Even the greatest writers were dull most of the time unless they
gave up before they could grow to be dull.
Maybe Chatterton was right,