(I posted this on my personal blog, but figured it makes for entertaining reading, at least, to me, so I’m posting it over here too)
I’ve been reading up on various people’s responses to the Lost finale. Everything I read has made me dislike the finale even more than I did when we finished it (and that was quite a bit…) and I’ve come to the following conclusion: I’m sick of people rationalizing for the show and “apologizing” for it. I enjoyed watching the show. I liked the show. I think I may even go back and rewatch the first five seasons at some point. However, it wasn’t my favorite show in the world, and it has not rocked my world that it ended badly. Disappointed? Sure.
However, despite all that, I am moving on. In the past, when I’ve read a book that ended in a dis-satisfactory way, or watched a movie that left me feeling like, “Seriously? What?” I have had no problem with coming up with my own alternate ending and then pretending that was the way it really ended. (Always the overactive imagination… that’s me).
Thus, without further ado, this is how I would have ended LOST:
Skip the whole sixth season and it’s alternate-reality/purgatory thing… the bomb goes off, jumps our characters to their correct place in time, kills Juliet, and leaves Sawyer grief-stricken. Then, the ending would have gone something like this: We would have discovered that Jacob’s motives were pure and that immortality is quite taxing and he has held the evil that is the smoke monster (which in my ending is a demonic/alien force caged on the island due to the island’s electromagnetic uniqueness) at bay for as long as he can. He is tired and has run out of new things to try and feels that his control of the situation is slipping and he needs fresh blood and a new perspective to take his place. Jin and Sun would make it back to the mainland and live happily ever after with their daughter. Claire was actually dead and Kate would have to return to the mainland to be with Aaron. Jack and Locke would have a much cooler, far more impressive show-down, (along with a “real” storm) in which they both ended up dying. Sawyer becomes the island’s new protector (because, really, what else does he have to do? And besides, he’s been my favorite character since episode 1) and spends his days jumping the island through time (because the protector can do that) in order to keep Ben from getting loose on the world ever again because Ben becomes the new force of evil on the island (because there always has to be a balance and you can’t destroy evil, you can weaken it, you can cage it, but you can’t destroy the balance). And Hurley… well, Hurley goes home in peace because the island doesn’t need him anymore and he gets to live out his life as the lucky guy to whom nothing bad ever happens – and is never plagued by ghost numbers ever again. In the final scene, we would see Ben and Sawyer sitting on the beach while a group of strange aliens build a four toed statue in the background and Ben turns to Sawyer (his eyes gleaming red) and says, “Do you have any idea how much I want to kill you?” And Sawyer just smiles and shakes his head and goes back to reading his book (some classic… maybe A Tale of Two Cities)… because he’s cool like that.
Just found out about this new contest, when I was over at ABNA checking out who the top 6 finalists are in that contest. As I was poking around, I came across a link to this other contest, apparently the deadline is today…
The “Dear Lucky Agent” contest. I am submitting my work into the contest, we’ll see what happens. The top three submissions get a free review of their first 10 pages and a free one-year subscription to WritersMarket.com.
You can see more about the contest and the details of the contest here: guidetoliteraryagents.com/blog
This is a short story I wrote for the class I took a couple of summers ago.
“Jenelle, wake up!”
My roommate’s voice yanks me out of sleep and into a groggy semi-awareness. I jump, hitting my head on something hard. I raise my hand to my head and look at the clock: 6:30am.
“Ellie, I’ve only been asleep for an hour! What’s wrong?”
“I don’t know where we are, I need your help.”
I frown and rub my eyes. They feel as though I’ve been scraping sandpaper across them. I open my eyes wider and stare at my roommate, trying to see past the blurriness of sleep. Then I look out through the window of the truck and stare up at the buildings surrounding us.
“What do you mean, you don’t know where we are?”
“Our road ran out, it just ended. I was driving along and our road ran out, and I had to go through a tunnel or over a bridge or something and they charged me six whole dollars. There’s nowhere to park and I don’t know where we are.”
“Calm down,” I am starting to wake up now. I pull out the old, wrinkled atlas that we’ve been using and open it up to the Pennsylvania page.
“Alright, I went to sleep about an hour or so ago and we were just outside of Harrisburg, if you’ve been going about sixty miles per hour since then we can’t be any further than New Jersey. Do you know what street we’re on?”
“No,” Ellie grips the steering wheel tightly with both hands, her eyes wide.
“Ok, we just need to ask someone where we are, and we probably shouldn’t just keep driving. Can you find a place to park? What’s open at this hour?”
We drive past a few more buildings, their windows reflecting the pale red of the sunrise. My tiredness has been replaced by adrenaline, I can hear my heart beating loudly in my ears. I spot a yellow sign that says, “24 hours.”
“There!” I point, “A twenty-four hour McDonald’s, and there’s a parking spot right there on our side of the street, pull over, pull over.”
Ellie follows my orders and parks the truck and we both get out. I stand on the sidewalk clutching the atlas and staring up at the skyscrapers, they are taller than they seemed from inside the truck. Ellie joins me and we walk down the street to the McDonald’s. The air is cold and I shiver, pulling my jacket tighter around my neck. My skin tingles as a gust of wind whips down the street and plays with my already unruly hair. I stomp my feet as we walk, trying to regain some feeling in them. I hate to think what we must look like, how unkempt we appear.
We enter the McDonald’s and an assortment of smells assails my nose. Aromas of sausages and bacon waft from the kitchen, mingled with the floury smell of biscuits. Ellie sniffs appreciatively but I am on a mission. A man behind the counter smiles at us.
“What can I get for you?”
“I need directions,” I hold out the atlas, opening it slightly like a peace offering. “Can you tell me where we are?”
“Sure,” he has an easy smile, bright teeth in his dark face. His earring distracts me for a moment and then I make eye-contact again as he continues. “We’re on the corner of Twenty-Fourth and Fulton.”
I blink, something about his words seems alien. I shake my head, “No, I mean… what state are we in?”
His eyes widen and his grin falters a bit, “Girl, you’re in Manhattan.”
I have always enjoyed various writing exercises. So this exercise is one in describing a “mood.” The goal is to use vivid imagery and all 5 senses to give the reader an accurate “feel” for the emotions of the character. The following three snippets are each describing a different emotion… see if you can figure out what each paragraph is trying to convey:
1) The sun was warm on her head and shoulders as she stood on the front lawn holding the hose. The water hissed and sputtered at the spigot where it leaked out in every direction. The leaky spigot did not keep the water from gushing through the hose, however, and as she held the nozzle in her hand and pressed the rubber lever a steady stream of water sprayed out over the lawn. Drops of water began to slowly collect on the long, green blades of grass. The thatch that had been dug up earlier by the slit-seeder began to change color from light tan to a darker brown as the water from the hose rained down upon it. Water began to pool in the patches of dirt where the old grass had died off and the new grass seed had been planted. And still the sun beat down. Although the air itself was mild, the warmth of the sun on her shoulders began to grow increasingly hot. Her shoulders and ears began to burn. She passed the spray of water back and forth across the grass; at her feet, the water that dripped down from the leaking spigot began to pool and the cold water brushed up against her toes causing her to jump slightly. She could feel beads of sweat beginning to form on her face and so she moved down the lawn into the shade of the tree that stood at the corner of her house. Even as she walked she held the lever of the hose nozzle compressed so that the water would continue to spray out over the lawn, activating the new grass seed and causing it to begin to grow. The fingers on her right hand began to cramp and she switched the nozzle to her left hand while she flexed the fingers of her right hand and then shook it out. She put her right hand in the stream of the cold water and felt the muscles begin to relax.
2) A soft wind swept through the trees, across the field and down the hill to the frozen lake, brushing up the powdery top layer of snow as it passed and causing the tiny crystals of snow to dance through the air on shadowy legs. The silver moon gazed down over the landscape, its brightness magnified by the whiteness of the snow. Stars, like brightly glowing snowflakes peered down from the clear black sky, their light not competing with the brightness of the moon and yet still starkly visible against the dark canvas in which they had been painted. At the edge of the field stood a grove of trees. Crystalline branches covered in ice sparkled in the moonlight. The wind whispered across the snow, a soft voice, so quiet that one would have to strain hard in order to make sense of the words. The ice-coated branhes clinked together as the wind passed over and around them. A set of footprints crossed the field, winding from the trees down to the frozen lake. Pools of shadow lay at the bottom of each print because the snow was so deep. Whoever had passed by had been forced to trudge through snow that was nearly knee deep. Despite the whispering of the wind and the clinking of the branches, a quiet seemed to fill the air, a silence so thick and heavy that it lay over the top of the snow like a down-filled blanket. No animals ventured out of their warm burrows or hiding places this chilly night, no howls or chirps disturbed the silence of the darkness.
3) While the kitchen was still as colorless and austere as the rest of the palace, it was the only place where smiles were seen and laughter was heard; not often, but it did happen every now and then. Gregoire had grown up in very solitary circumstances. The other servant-children did not laugh or joke; in fact they hardly even talked. They were a quiet lot, and they kept to themselves. In the kitchen, however austere the decoration, at least there was noise and color. All was clanging of pots and loud-voiced cooks and hustling here and scurrying there. Where everything else was strict, orderly, tidy, and sterile, the kitchen was a place of life and seeming chaos. Sauces were stirred briskly and batters were whisked. Eggs were beaten and meat and vegetables were chopped into tiny pieces and thrown together in steaming skillets. Cooks moved about the kitchen as if performing a dance, white aprons whirling as they moved from counter to stove and back again. Smells of all kinds of different foods wafted up from various stoves and mingled together, creating smells that would make anyone’s stomach rumble loudly. In the morning, the smell of bacon could always be identified, along with the crackling and popping of grease in the pans on top of the stoves. Some mornings would find the kitchen rich with the smell of cinnamon if one of the cooks had decided to make a coffee cake instead of the usual bacon and eggs. In the warmth of the afternoons there was always some sort of brightly colored fruit salad to go with whatever the main course was to be. The cool evenings often brought the scents of spiced meats and warm aromas of different sauces that would be poured thickly over bowls of pasta or rice.