Skip to content

Knives Posts

Featured Post

Welcome!

I’m glad you decided to drop by to read Knives. You should know that there is violence ahead, and profanity that sometimes verges on gleeful. But if you don’t mind those things, and if maybe you find “good” and “evil” too rigid of concepts to actually apply in the real world, then you might enjoy Knives. I know I do.

This page is where you will find news and updates about the story. The whole story is here, or you can dive right into episode one. Each episode links to the next, so you can bump right along.

Don’t be shy about leaving comments! I would enjoy hearing what you thought. The spam-blocker might get you at first, but be sure I will find your comment and free it for the world to see.

Episode 39 Published!

This episode has been almost ready for a week or more, but it wasn’t quite ready for the light of the LEDs in your screen. Today at last we crossed that threshold. I approach these moments with a combination of pride, relief, and the certainty that if I waited another day I could make it better. But I’ll feel the same way tomorrow; so at some point it’s time to set the words free.

Interestingly (to me, at least), the moment I can let go often comes after I delete a chunk of the episode and replace it with what should have been there all along.

But while this episode crept toward the light, it has been a big time for Knives. Welcome new patrons! You broke the Patreon widget in my sidebar, you’re so awesome!*

The episode is about a moment when people who maybe don’t want to fight each other realize they’re probably going to have to fight anyway. Neither side can compromise their goals. And Elena grows up a bit. Maybe Martin is good for her after all.

Enjoy Episode 39: A Rebel.

The next Patreon goal is ambitious, both financially and from the perspective of my workflow. Tell your friends! Put me on the hook for regularly-scheduled episodes! It’s what we all want!

____

* Actually, changes in the data from Patreon broke the widget. I’ll be working on that this week. But you’re all still awesome!

Moving!

Knives will be offline for a little while this afternoon; the server upon which it resides is going to be moving from one Mysterious Bunker Somewhere Near Las Vegas to a different MBSNLV.

I’m not sure how long the system will be down before it gets plugged back in and the new DNS info propagates through the Web-Tubes.

See you on the other side!

Moved!

The move is complete. You may carry on as you were.

Episode 38 Published

I’ve been working on this episode for a while. I had a great intro, but the next plot movement didn’t carry much action. I wanted to dress it up. After a while I quit moaning about it and Wrote The Damn Chapter, and it came out pretty well. Except… that intro I was so happy with? It didn’t belong at the top of this chapter. It had to go. But I needed something there — it was time to get another glimpse at Martin’s thoughts. It just had to be the right glimpse.

Any time you start an anecdote with “I once killed a man who…” I think it’s going to be an interesting story. So during the quiet passage of days at Rock Fork we learn a little more about what makes our hero tick. And, now that I think about it, what doesn’t.

Then everything changes. There’s a new threat, and it’s not like any they’ve faced before.

Enjoy Episode 38: Worm!

Never forget, dear patrons, that this whole endeavor is powered by you. I thank you for you support and ask only that you spread the word.

And Hey Wow! Another Patreon goal met! Which means I owe another backstory. While I get off my sorry ass and get to work putting Katherine’s story on these pages, it’s time for the Mighty Benefactors of All Things Sharp and Pointy to decide whose backstory comes next. Feel free to talk among yourselves while I figure out if I can create a poll in a sensible location.

I expect I’ll be churning out this hastily-written, not-terribly-edited treatise in November. It’s what Novembers are for, after all, even allowing for the fact that I’m getting married in December.

Author’s hints to the voters: Elena’s story before Martin walks into the bar in Mountain Hole is horrible, and it might be tiresome to wade through it since the first ray of hope for her happens right in the current story. Stories of survival despite unrelenting horror are inspiring, but her backstory would not include the actual getting-out-alive part. Might be a drag. A couple of other characters have come and gone, but probably haven’t made a big enough impact to be interesting. Mrkl might be an interesting choice; that backstory would include a previous version of Martin. Then there’s the King or that Baron that got killed, but those stories would be so spoiler-heavy they would ruin everything.

So think about it, ye Mighty, and don’t forget to include inanimate objects in your discussion. Martin’s lovely black-bladed knife, which has a twin somewhere that took the life of its creator, or Bags’ shiny sword.

Or maybe go afield and find a god from one of Elena’s curses, or a character from Bags’ backstory. (I’m wondering if I’m going to regret mentioning that.)

It’s up to you, Mighty Ones.

Episode 37 Published

What happens to a society whose order depends on stone walls when those walls don’t work anymore? Old Robert has some theories, and a lot of what he says makes sense. Sometimes the dispassionate view of an outside observer can add clarity. That doesn’t mean he’s omniscient, though. I mean, what are the odds that everything he says is correct?

At first Episode 37 was too short. Then it was too long. Now… maybe a touch long. In the end, there’s a lot of exposition as the folks have a chance to consider the implications of the events up until now.

Behind the scenes, this episode was a long time coming, and I apologize. There were two factors: 1) I did a lot of writing but on a different story, and 2) Keeping any sort of flow with this much exposition is challenging. I felt it was time, though, for the people in the story to consider the big picture rather than stumble around blindly, lest they fall too far behind the reader in putting things together and become annoying.

But now please enjoy Episode 37: Lessons and Questions.

Not my finest hour naming chapters. If you have a better suggestion, I’d love to hear it.

Episode 36 Published

A quiet place, relatively safe. Physical wounds can be tended to, but perhaps those are not the only injuries our little band of heroes has suffered. It is, at last, a moment to pause, and to decide how to act rather than merely react. Which begs the question “Just what is it we want to accomplish?”

I like this episode for a few reasons. The last sentence is the biggest of those. A big moment for Katherine.

Anyway, enjoy Episode 36: People Like Us.

Behind the scenes, I didn’t get as many actual words written as I had hoped to while in Kansas. The reasons for that are complex, but with the help of the Repeat Offenders I came to a couple of significant decisions, story-wise. One of those changes is particularly scary (for me), and will be challenging to get right. To be honest, it paralyzed me for a bit. I have taken on a new tactic as I make my way to the big change: Try not to think about it too much.

Episode 35 Published

“We shall always be.” It’s a compelling slogan, a good chorus to a song, as long as you don’t think too hard about “Who is we?” and “Be what?” Elena, perhaps, answers those questions differently than the rest of the group.

But we shall always be.

Behind the scenes, this chapter is special in a couple of ways: It’s long overdue, and it has been published from the steps of a residence hall in Lawrence, Kansas. I arrived this afternoon and for the next two weeks I will be devoting myself entirely to the written word. I plan to write two more episodes (along with other stuff), but I’ll probably not publish them both while I’m here.

It’s kind of funny; I have a lot of stuff going on, but when I sit down to write this story it flows. Just gotta do that more. I like the four people in this group, and I vow to devote myself to reinforcing their individuality. As a tease: who ever heard of an even-numbered party of heroes?

Episode 34 Published


Knives Episode 34 is out! A bit of travel, a campfire, and a look at the thing from the well.

I was sorely tempted to put a stinger on the end of this episode, but boy would that have messed with my plans. You can’t just put every shiny idea you get into a story, no matter how well it would have rounded out this episode. So, no fireworks this time.

On the writing side, I’ve discovered that the way to make money on Patreon as a writer is to write porn. I’m just going to stick with hoping my patrons see fit to spread the word about Knives, however.

In other news, the chicken that lives next door just laid an egg. Life in a trailer park is nothing if not glamorous.

Anyway, enjoy Episode 34: The Prize!

Episode 33 Published

We rarely outrun our pursuit, we outlast it.

Knives Episode 33: The Hardest Lesson has been published! Things happen, but they’re small things. Things that might or might not develop into large things.

Over there on Muddled Ramblings I talked for a bit about a character quirk of Martin’s I reveal in this episode, that to actually make sense I’d have to go back and tweak a lot of previous episodes. I left that quirk in for now, and perhaps you can spot it. In the next few days I’ll have to decide what to do about that quirk. Either erase it from this episode, or go back and do some rewritin’.

It is taking me much longer to get to looking at the goddam thing from the well than I thought it would. That’s because there are more important things going on. Or at least that’s my story now.

Behind the scenes, things are going pretty well. I’d like to welcome a new patron, and send out special thanks, while respecting privacy. Thanks, new patron! I’ll have your special access set up real soon. All y’all feel free to spread the good word.

Episode 32 Published

This is a gentler episode than we’ve had lately; if this were a heavyweight boxing match this would be one of the rounds where both boxers’ ears are ringing from blows in the previous rounds. Martin is not one to stand toe-to-toe with an opponent, so perhaps this is for the best. He is also not a team player, and that may show a bit this time around. Elena and Katherine have an accord, but how deep does it run?

From a writerly viewpoint, in this episode I’m working more on the connective tissue of the story than on the meat or the bone. But the best stories have great ligaments — the connections between characters and events that turn a travelogue into a story. So I’d best pay careful attention to this stuff. I wasn’t feeling terribly creative this afternoon, but I had a great time going back over the draft and adding another layer of detail to the descriptions. You learn a lot about a character by what they observe.

Some stuff I thought I’d cover in this episode has been pushed back; I’m not trying to be coy about The Thing From The Well, but there are more immediate problems to solve first.

Behind the scenes, progress on the next two episodes was, it turns out, greatly exaggerated. But the good news is that I had an idea today that totally ties the room together, but I hadn’t included in my plan.

So please enjoy Episode 32: What Needs to be Done