[Introduction: Melanie Stormm continues her humorous series of posts about the misdirected emails she’s been getting. Stormm is a multiracial writer who writes fiction, poetry, and audio theatre. Her novella, Last Poet of Wyrld’s End is available through Candlemark & Gleam. She is currently the editor at the SPECk, a monthly publication on speculative poetry by the SFPA. Find her in her virtual home at coldwildeyes.com. Wipe your feet before entering.]
WENDIGO APPLE FARMS
Hello All, Melanie here!
This is the last week of our Writer X giveaway celebrating one year of Writer X here at File 770. If you’d like to have a limited edition Writer X gift box shipped to your front door, all you have to do is leave a comment below. I’ll respond to you with info about where to email your mailing details and get your free gift to you in the mail right away.
If you left a comment on previous fits but haven’t received a reply from me, apologies! Both myself and Mike have tried reaching out to everyone, but sometimes emails don’t land where they’re supposed to. Please send an email to melanie at msmarketing dot org and we’ll get that fixed. Thanks so much for reading.
In the meanwhile, I received a weird, isolated email in the middle of the night early this week. I’ll interject it below now without comment.
Subject: Let’s just pretend none of this happened
Even if you want to talk about what happened, I am not going to talk about what happened. This is up to and including anything that is on or adjacent to, or can be included in what happened. In fact, I’m not even going to acknowledge that what happened is waht happened.
And then, later this week, I received the next series of emails here.
Without further ado…
Subject: TRYXY’S FIRST FALL!!!!!!
I’m sorry to be emailing you so late in the week about my new book, but Tryxy and I have been VERY busy. Since you’re allergic to apples you probably don’t know that Wendigo Apple Farm’s apple picking season starts this Saturday and it is an EXTREMELY SERIOUS AFFAIR. It is SO serious that you probably want to get over your allergy to apples and START PREPARING NOW.
Wendigo Apple Farm Apples are the BEST apples, Gladys!!!! And you know how you know they’re the best apples???? THEY ARE VERY EXPENSIVE!!!!!! It is also an EXTREMELY popular place. It is VERY important to get there AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE on opening day to beat the rush of idiots with buckets!!!!1
I have TEMPORARILY put my new fantasy novel on hold in order to focus on preparation for Saturday’s trip to Wendigo. This is why I am unable to send you pages at this time.
Tod Boadkins says that I have “fear of the blank page” and am just looking for any excuse to avoid writing BUT THIS IS NOT THAT, GLADYS!!!!!!!!! I am absolutely sure that I will have lots of new pages to share with you after we go apple picking on Saturday!!!! Besides, Tod Boadkins hasn’t even been WRITING his book, he’s just been doing “RESEARCH” so I don’t have anything to worry about.
Anyhorch. Back to the apple-picking.
Unfortunately, since Tryxy and I were unexpectedly away all summer, we were not able to earn income and have had to tuck into savings. BUT THAT DOESN’T MEAN WE CAN’T GET A HUNDRED DOLLARS OF APPLES!!!!!
Instead, Tryxy and I have hatched a GENIOUS plan!!!!! We are going to do it FRUGALLY. Frugal is the New England way.
The biggest downside is that Wendigo Apple Farm charges about $20 for a pound of their delicious, prestigious, Instagrammable apples and that is not exactly in the writing budget. So Tryxy and I are tightening our belts!!
Furthermore, I have my second book to think about and I will DEFINITELY not have time to be canning apples, making pies, homemade cider, cider donuts, caramel apples, or apple crisps. And with this approach I won’t have any leftover apples to have to can!!!! See???? Tod Boadkins is WRONG and I am NOT avoiding writing, I am actually thinking about ways to NOT avoid writing in the future by focusing on apple picking!!!!!
I AM SUPER FOCUSED!!!!!
Wow. I completely forgot what I was writing to you about. I’m sure it was something.
Subject: ARE YOU BAKING????? BACK TO SCHOOL!!!!!
I am extremely hungry. Not to worry, but everything is going to plan PERFECTLY. I was just noticing that dryer sheets smell kind of delicious. Why don’t we have dryer sheet flavored candy??? I think it would be good. If I wasn’t a writer, I could think of tons of ways to make money because right now there are so many things that smell delcious that WE DON’T EVEN EAT!!!! We are definitely missing out.
So far today Tryxy has eaten four licks of air. I have eaten two potato chips, an ice cube, and about eight glasses of metamucil. We have to make sure that both our large and small intestines are READY!!!!!! By the time we get into Wendigo’s on Saturday morning, we’ll have been fasting for THREE DAYS and we will definitely be ready to SAVE MONEY ON APPLES!!!!!
The trick to saving money on your Wendigo Apple Farms Apples is to EAT AS MANY OF THE APPLES AS YOU CAN WHILE YOU’RE STILL AT THE ORCHARD. Then, when they weigh your bucket, you only pay for what you carry out!!!!
We are SO GOOD at preparing, we are really going to DESTROY those apples!!!!!
Anyhoot, Tod Boadkins is wrong. I’ve been very light headed with all of this apple-fasting and I couldn’t possibly write a single page. It’ll be fine. Sometimes in order to do more writing, you have to do less writing. It’s a well known rule in writing circles, I know you probably have never heard of that rule, Galdys, but you can take my word for it since I’m a writer and you know I’m an official writer because I AM WORKING ON MY SECOND NOVEL.
By not working on my second novel.
And by fasting for apples, I will be hungrier for success than I have EVER BEEEN!!!!! And you know what they say, Gladys!!!!! NEVER LOSE YOUR HUNGER!!!!!!! AND I AM EXTREMELY HUNGRY RIGHT NOW.
That gives me an idea Gladys!!!! When I’m done writing this book, I can write a whole book on writing called “How to Write More by Not Writing.” It’ll be like a Writer X Masterclass!!!!!
Gladys, what is that mythical Wampanoag monster that people talk about seeing around here???? The one that’s very very hungry and can never stop consuming because it’s hunger can’t be filled???? You know, the one in Pet Sematary???? Starts with a W.
Wimbledon? Windowsill? Chuck Wendig…….Wendy’s??? That’s it!!! Wendy’s!!!! I’m like a hungry Wendy’s for writing!!!!!
In other news, it’s back to school time in the neighborhood. Those neighbors from Boston who moved in across the street in the middle of the pandemic have cute little kids and they just dressed them up in matching flannel outfits and took back to school photos on the front lawn.
Tryxy is also still looking at enrolling in the Miskatonic Online Degree Program. I’m very exciting for him. He hasn’t declared a major yet, but he’s starting his application!!!!! He will probably take his first classes in January. Fortunately I have lots and lots of pink flannel so we’re going to dress him up in it and take his back to school photos later tonight when the moon is out and he’s a little more visible beneath the red moonlight.
Whew! A little light headed!
I’m gonna go lay down, Gladys!!!
P.S. The cicadas are very loud today. I’ve heard that they are very delicious.
Subject: THE HUNGER IS HIDING INSIDE MY CLOSET AND SO ARE ALL MY FEARS
I have been fasting for forty hours.
Laying here I have had a lot of HUGE thoughts filling my head. I am haunted by these thoughts. They are all consuming. I can’t outrun them. They demanded to be satiated.
There are two thoughts that are the ones that rule them all. I’m wasting away growing smaller and smaller and the thoughts are growing bigger and bigger. They devour the universe, they’re devouring me alive.
Why don’t we eat dish soap?
And why couldn’t I finish my first book?
What makes me think I could finish my econd book if I couldn’t finish my first? What if I don’t finish it? Then what happens? Will it mean I’m not a writer anymore? If you only have written half a book, can you still be a famous writer? Where are the publishing companies that will publish half a fantasy novel?
Every time I think about my new story, all I see are these thoughts circling and circling the page like vultures waiting for me to wither away into nothing so that they can pick my writerly bones.
That and a Big Mac. I also see a Big Mac circling the page. With wings. And a hot sauce halo.
This story has to be different. It has to prove to the world that I really am a writer and that I’m actually good at this and that Tod Boadkins isn’t the only local writer that is published. But can I tell you something?
I think my character Fenchin is in my closet.
I think I hear her scratching her fingernails down the walls and her once beautiful voice calling out with the rattle of the grave “X, why have you abandoned me? WHY HAVE YOU ABANDONED ME??? I AM YOUR FIRST CHARACTER FROM YOUR FIRST NOVEL. I WILL HAUNT ALL OF YOUR STORIES AND CONSUME YOU UNTIL I AM SATISFIED!!!!!”
And then she starts frying bacon which is a horrible thing to do to someone who’s trying to save money on apples.
Subject: Can you spot me $60
SUCCESS!!!!!!!! I did it!!!!! I thought of something that’s supposed to be in my new book!!!!! It suddenly came to me after all the apple fructose hit my liver and about three minutes before Tryxy lost his mind and devoured 80% of Wendigo Apple Farms orchard yield.
I HAD A VISSION!!!!! I saw a young woman standing in a medievally house. She had a shawl around her shoulders and she was looking out of a rough hewn doorway at a yellow sky. Then, she stands on one leg or is it that she only has one leg???
I think that’s my new character, Gladys!!!!! The child of the prophecy!!!!! (THE COTP) Apple picking worked!!!! I know what I have to do because you know what my problem is????
I KNOW NOTHING ABOUT MEDIEVALLY HOUSES!!!!!! How can I start wrting my story if I don’t know what a medieval house looks like????? How can I start my story if I don’t know how a shawl is made or how fabric to make shawls was made in olden times or how fabric to make shawls is made now?????
TOD BOADKINS ISN’T THE ONLY PERSON WHO CAN DO RESEARCH!!!!
As soon as the police the apple farm called let me go, I’m going to get home and start write away on RESEARCH!!!!! This is what is going to make this novel different!!!!! Instead of researching AFTER I’ve started writing, I’m not going to write ANYTHING until I know exactly what I have to write and I know EVERYTHING about whatever I need to know to write this story!!!!!
I know what you’re thinking, but research isn’t avoiding writing, Gladys. It’s important. It could never possibly go wrong.
On a different note, could you spot me $60 until I can get to the ATM? Stupid Wendigo Apple Farms changed their price policy. They no longer weigh the buckets you take out and instead weigh you. Tryxy ate most of their apples but you know how he is, he can eat and eat and he never gains an ounce!!! I however am three pounds heavier than I was when I came in and have had to let out my zipper.
If I had known they were going to do this, I wouldn’t have let them weigh me!!!!!!!
$60 bucks, Gladys! Bring cash, I have research to do!!!!
P.S. Gladys, be careful when you’re coming up Farm Road. Apparently there is a giant skeletal creature with teeth the size of fenceposts that is ravenously consuming human flesh buried in the Farm Hill cemetery and is blocking eastbound traffic. I think his name is Hugh. Anyways, better go around.
P.P.S. Please rush. I’m not sure if that’s apples or inspiration that just hit my small intestine.
sent from my iPhone
Hrm, gift box sounds cool.
It’s not apples, is it?
Hi Adrienne! It’s…probably not apples. 😉
I’ve got one with your name on it! Please send your mailing info to melanie at msmarketing dot org and I’ll get it out to you toute suite.
Ever have one of those dreams where the blank pages are chasing you, and just when you think you’re getting away they fold themselves into paper airplanes and start dive-bombing you? Me neither.
Can you hear my high and tittering nervous laugh? Because that is totally the laugh of someone who has no idea what you could possibly mean!
…that’s convincing, right? 😉
Follow your heart, tryxy!
In an odd bit of synchronicity, I went to a u-pick apple orchard near Lincoln on Sunday. I took advantage of their pre-picked apples, and came home with three different varieties: Crimson Crisp, Jonafree, and Honeycrisp. I spent way less than $60, but admittedly this orchard doesn’t claim to have Instagram-worthy apples. 😀