All Stories, Literally Reruns, Short Fiction

Literally Reruns – You Got That Right by Adam Kluger

Leila has brought out a piece by a regular contributor to the site. Adam keeps us on out toes with his off the wall stories and his art. He is a great friend and an unusual and entertaining writer. This is what Leila said:

Bram Stoker went all modern when he inserted the wonder called the dictaphone into Dracula. It wasn’t a stunt, either, for it and other touches helped substantiate the vast difference between the (then) modern world and the Time Gone By of the Count, and it was Dracula’s inability to keep up with the times that led to his downfall.

Although it’s been done plenty, texting is used in Adam Kluger’s You Got That Right. But unlike most of the others who do so, Kluger displays a knack for presenting the subtle way that even the clearest texts can transform basic information into something with an entirely different meaning. It also presents an Ancient Someone who seems more up on things than the famous vampire ever was. The only thing wrong here is that this nuanced piece will probably be lost on persons who communicate exclusively through emojis, which are cute–for awhile, but are to the writing brain what a case of Coca Cola a day is to the pancreas.

Q: To build both character and story using such a quick-hitting form is admirable. Did it require much planning to come off as effortless as it seems?

Q: Milford seems to be aware that he is overmatched but goes on anyway. How much did his longing and Tiana’s obvious feline sensibilities direct the run of the story? (I probably got it wrong. But I believe that the characters always direct the story.)

Leila Allison

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You Got That Right

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Adam’s responses:

Q: Milford seems to be aware that he is overmatched but goes on anyway. How much did his longing and Tiana’s obvious feline sensibilities direct the run of the story? (I probably got it wrong. But I believe that the characters always direct the story.)

A: Leila, Alyssa Doorumple is the Daisy Buchanan that Milford desires. An ideal woman who is perfect and unattainable. It forces Milford to take stock of himself and those around him. The online dating world is a fascinating study of desire and aspirational delusion. The Tiana character was based on an actual online dating profile of a beautiful, bikini-clad woman hugging a leopard. So, really, the story is about raw, almost animalistic desire and the potential for danger that also exists beneath the surface of romantic pursuit. Re: hidden dangers– I love what Melville once wrote in Moby Dick, when beholding the tranquil beauty and brilliancy of the ocean’s skin, one forgets the tiger heart that pants beneath it; and would not willingly remember, that this velvet paw but conceals a remorseless fang.”    

Q: To build both character and story using such a quick-hitting form is admirable. Did it require much planning to come off as effortless as it seems?

A: First off, my favorite part of being selected for a rerun is a chance to talk writing with you, Leila! I just think you are so creative, talented, and generous with your insight, humor, and spirit. And thank you for the kind compliment.

For me, it all starts with a desire to tackle a feeling. The words and characters are just the bridge. The emotion is what drives each piece. I’m not focusing on the craft of writing as much as I am trying to be honest and resonant. I think it takes a while–trial and error– to find one’s voice as a writer. A narrative style that you trust and that feels true. I’m heavily influenced by Bukowski and Hemingway and my background as a journalist when it comes to attempting to marry emotional depth and humor with a straight-forward writing style. My former CNN colleague Bill Tush was also a major influence. Bill’s approach to writing a feature story–essentially a short story– was to avoid cliché and approach a character from unexpected angles and add humor whenever appropriate. I think the best way to improve one’s writing is to read great writers. I enjoy and draw inspiration from the very talented writers on Literally Stories as well!

2 thoughts on “Literally Reruns – You Got That Right by Adam Kluger”

  1. It’s terribly redundant on my part to thank the author for his or her answers. But once again, the author, this time, Mr, Kluger, has done such a fine job answering that there’s nothing to do but thank him and admire the quality of both his writing and correspondences.
    LA

    Like

  2. Hi Leila,
    What can I say??
    Beautifully done as usual.
    Excellent choice and excellent prod to the writer!

    Adam – It’s always a pleasure to see your work and read your thought process. I was very interested to read about how a story starts for you with a desire to tackle a feeling.
    That has actually given me an idea for my post this week. (I’ll give you a nod in it!)
    Hugh

    Like

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