The Writings and Works of Alex Putnam

Website: | News | Intro |In Planning | Archive | Links | Contact | Design Notes & Credits
Writings: | Journals | Novels & Novellas | Poetry | Short Stories & Novelettes | Random Fun

 

News:

09.12.08 Apologies, apologies, apologies.  My university is doing their utmost best to ensure that I don't graduate, so even with only handful of classes it's been a continual hassle.  I've posted my new short story, “The World Walker”, and it's already polished and finalized.  Let me know what you think.  Also added teaser quotes to most of the stories.  In the meantime, I've been revising SdD and prepping to work on the second Aria (part/arc) of the story.  Cheers!

08.06.07 Has it really been sixth months?  0_o Geez.  Anyway, there's a new short story, “Gehenna” up for your perusal.  Don't worry, I'm not going emo.  Just think of it like the commercial for the SNES Pitfall game: “Just a reminder: not everyone wins.”  And I'm working on both revising SdD and chapter six of The Weaver, not to mention expanding the future chapters of the tale of fae and librarians.


Intro

    What's this page about?  Well, to be simple, TheDurandal.com is the new home of the writing and works of Alex Putnam.  He's currently a mechanical engineering student at a certain Norman, Oklahoma university that gets irrationally paranoid when mentioned by name in a non-official manner.  While he may be a Mech-E, his favorite passion is writing (usually fiction prose), and that's what this site is for: a compilation of in-progress and finished works of writing.  He could have made this site with intricate menus, Flash, Javascript, and a shiny user interface guaranteed to only work on a specific browser on alternate Thursdays, but I don't really care for something that overcomplicates what this site is meant to be.  Thus, a simple, clean, archive of documents that are the real stars of this site.  And he thinks it's time to stop referring to himself in third person.  Thanks,
                                                                            —Alex Putnam

P.S.—If you're new here, and want something quick, try “Chess” first.  If you have more time, check out The Weaver.  Also...I paragraph by scene organization, not by character speech.  If you can't handle it, you need to stop whining.  It's my prerogative. 


In Planning

Alex's Planned Works—Any good writer cursed with inspiration receives the coolest, most entirely awesome ideas while doing something else, namely while mowing lawns, attempting to sleep, taking notes in class, or any time not devoted to writing.  And my mind independently creates, develops, and blends these ideas subconsciously without my permission.  And then it proceeds to bug me about them until they're written down.

Hence the pages and pages of planning notes I have.  I'm not posting those any time soon, but I have a list of synopses of my works in the wings.


Archive

The News Archive—Ever wonder what was updated when?  An archive of older news posts, featuring site and writing updates.


Writings

Journals


The Errant Scholar: A Tale of Gale Evenwood, hedgewizard and sellsword
“The Art is much more than the ability to smash things and fling balls of fire.  I just happen to be relatively apt in those regards.”
Gale Evenwood is a Forgotten Realms D&D character that I play in real life. Originally from Deepingdale in the Dalelands, Gale is a traveler who practices both magic and swordplay, and hires out his mercenary services in order to pay for the rather expensive costs that the practice of wizardry requires.  He somehow got roped into saving the world (he'd rather be studying), or at least a sizeable portion of Faerûn.  But, if Gale has to run up and down the North, he would probably prefer to get the job done with slightly more...sane traveling companions.
Read The Errant Scholar Online
Additional Info on the Scholar


Novels & Novellas


Siegel der Doppelseele: Seal of the Twin Soul
Safeguard your podiums!  Be wary of Hot Topic stores!
Lind Ross is a young man with a problem.  He's cursed.  Two curses, actually.  The first involves him randomly passing out and waking up hours later across town.  That's never good.  The second is that he has miraculous powers...with side effects.  The supernatural has been so common that Lind considers it commonplace, and thus treats it as such.  He's not cynical—just irritated and mildly snarky.  So with “holy” curses he can't get rid of, he does the only thing he can do: he makes fun of them.  Armed with a journal and a droll wit, Lind disassembles the serious and sometimes very strange happenings of his day to day life and puts them in a new light.  Looking for action and international religious intrigue?  Go read a Dan Brown novel.  Want something that involves card-playing demons, podium commandeering, death-grip hugs, near-impossible games of Scrabble, and entire houses that belong in the 19th century?  Read Siegel der Doppelseele.  Regardless of whether Lind actually survives the school year, you can be sure of one thing: he'll poke fun at it.
Current Progress: Completed, awaiting revisal and editing
Download Siegel der Doppelseele



The Weaver
“So, what exactly were you saying? It sounded like a drake choking a goat with laryngitis.”
   
Although the world of Eurden is very much like Earth in most respects, this isn't your ordinary fantasy story. The people living there in the 21st century would very much like to consider themselves ordinary, but once you wander off into the woods deep enough... This is a story with unicorns that steal your lunch, evangelist Bible-thumping dryads that annoy Neo-Pagans, six floor buildings that have an elevator button marked “7”, and water spirits that have a taste for vodka and Vivaldi. This is a story where an Olympic archery bow fits in a handbag, where librarians can walk through bookcases, where rose petals are a lethal weapon, where a little bit of dark magic can jump-start a miracle, where man-eating fire-breathing dragons are sometimes a protected species, where dwarven business majors sell good coffee without the frills, where your cell phone appears in someone else's pockets, where magic is a science that follows its own branch of non-Newtonian Physics, and of course, where a dark wizard reweaves the fabric of reality to his own liking.
    And if the above doesn't make much sense, that's okay. Corlan Hayes finds it rather weird, too. So, it's up to one (mostly) human student and self-taught wizard and an eccentric but likeable half-elven librarian (who just might be an archmage) to save the city of Cordova against a ruthless enemy...with no sense of humor.
Current Progress: Spell the Fifth, last updated 09.01.07
Download The Weaver


Down With Sparkles
Being a tale of magical anti-heroes, tongues in cheeks, and fractured clichés.
A very much collaborative project with topleka.
The world is in crisis, and it calls for a hero!  Say…a magical girl!  Actually, that’s entirely a lie.  But, Eka, a perky fairy with a distorted view of things certainly thinks so.  So, she, by default, picks the first able candidate she sees to become an agent of justice…or something.  It’s too bad for Raim Weiss that he had to be one Eka chose. I'm not mincing words. He. Magical girl.  No good can come of this.
Current Progress: Episode One, last updated 16.01.06
Download Down With Sparkles


Project: L—A Dark and Mysterious Tale
“All this time, I’ve been stalked by a duck!?”
Currently only one of two works of my long fanfiction. I'm using it as writing practice. It's about an exchange student who gets stuck with the craziest family in Nerima against his will, and even outside of school, his life becomes hell, because, well, he has more than a few skeletons in his closet. It's something of a mystery, and if something seems pointless, if you understood The Deep Dark Ultimate Secret™, rereading things would give you a whole new perspective, and a second read-through would make even more sense. Now with 75% more Mousse, and Katakana to boot. (Use the Windows Install thing for multi-language support or look for the “MSMincho” font.)
Current Progress: Hiatus, Completed chapter 7, last updated 22.03.05
Download Project: L



A Midsummer's Present
“It seems Jared has taught you quite a bit, if you can use that level of arcanum.”
A high fantasy novella, currently about 40% done, and halted for a re-working.. AMP follows two weeks in the life of a young man named Tonis. He’s traveled to an unfamiliar city with vague instructions, and despite being a mere apprentice wizard he unknowingly changes the fate of the city of Auden during its annual two week Midsummer’s Festival. Although high fantasy in feel, AMP takes place in the pre-Renaissance 1470's of a semi-historical/alternate original world known as Eurden (which will later go on to be the setting of The Weaver some 600 years later.)
Current Progress: 10 Juna, last updated 28.06.05
Download A Midsummer's Present


Poetry

The Sword of Swords

Short Stories & Novelettes

The World Walker
I am called Eilam, Walker of Worlds.
A tone piece on
inspired by a class about the role of technology and humans, this takes a slightly dystopic (for some) look at the End of Time and post/trans-humanism, through the eyes of the last man ever born in the (regular) universe, as he sits and chats with a nameless (and genderless) shepherd.  Features prominent use of second person and some very obscure English words.
Current Progress: Completed
Download The World Walker

Gehenna
“You follow the Old Religions, right, Kid? Well, just think of it like this: I want them up there to bet on what kills me first.”
A mood piece on a world that was literally designed in my sleep, Gehenna is a modern, D&D-tinged world that's more or less post-apocalyptic.  I'm not spoiling anything more, other than to suggest bringing some serious snow repellent before you go shopping.  Enjoy
, and remember that some quests are more successful than others.
Current Progress: Completed
Download Gehenna



Alien Nine: Destroyer
“I’m sorry…some days…some days I’m more broken than others.”
My second (and probably last) work of fanfiction, and on a vastly overlooked and wonderful series. “Alien Nine: Destroyer” takes place directly after Alien Nine: Emulators, the one-volume manga sequel to the manga Alien Nine. (The OAV stops half-way through book two of three.) Under the cover of school organizations that protect said schools from the seemingly constant alien attacks, competing clans of aliens are actually vying for humans to act as symbiote hosts, and the battle between the clans has escalated since the girls entered middle school. They’re somewhat relieved by the addition of a new transfer student, as it’s something to keep their minds off things. The new student is a young girl, Jun Shinosaki, a quiet tomboy who looks like she’s been in a war zone. Her red-brown hair is cut in a boyishly short haircut; her face and neck are covered in scars. She wears a glass eye in her otherwise empty left eye socket, and instead of the standard skirt, she wears the odd, but school-approved combination of slacks and a uniform jacket over her blouse. At the same time, there’s a rumor among the aliens of a human known as the “Destroyer”, a person who’s managed to kill hundreds of them despite being an ordinary human. Could the new student be this “murderous killing machine”? Hell yes. And what’s with the gloves Jun never takes off?
Current Progress: Operation Ex6: “Mercury” completed, last updated 25.04.06
Download Alien Nine: Destroyer


The Night Shift
“The rest of Ian's shift was rather uneventful, if one were to exclude the several hundred pages knocked off from his paperback novel.”
Slightly shorter than “Chess”, “The Night Shift” is my shortest story.  This side-story to the upcoming Shin Project: L tells the story of Ian Booth, who works the night shift (big surprise there, eh?).  Includes requisite guy at the coffee shop counter, and requisite twist-ending with foreshadowing hints beforehand.  Enjoy
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Current Progress: Completed
Download The Night Shift


Chess
“You’re the best opponent that I’ve played, Ms. Pengraf. Now hurry up and choose your poison.”
Ranked as one of my best, if not the best of my works, and surprisingly, one of my shortest, both in length (4 pages) and speed (from planning to finished in under a day). Chess tells the story of Dolan Corbet, who ends up stuck at a skiing lodge with no friends and no skis. Out of mere chance, he meets his equal and learns that a game can be much more than just a game.

Current Progress: Completed
Download Chess


The Thieves of Time
“Isn’t it a bit early to be drinking brandy, Ren?”
The idea may seem strange, and the exposition may be a little heavy at times, but I certainly like this alternate universe story that's loosely based on Ascension (a novel I'm planning). It is a time when the Old Empire has fallen, and all of its ruins have either been wiped clean or co-opted and built upon, and with few artifacts, society has found a new treasure—books. Antique volumes and grimoires get a heavy price, and it's up to two part-time librarians, part-time adventurers, Merks Ser-Langsa and Ren Asatara to nab some serious reading material.

Current Progress: Completed
Download The Thieves of Time


The Sign of the Raven
“The Enemy?” “They Who Were Once Men.”
A “prequel” to Shin Project: L. It has been described as “pretentious” but that's not really accurate. Told as one might tale a campfire tale, this legend, like any other, has been exaggerated and had parts left out over time, so that it no longer resembles what actually happened. There was a young boy with the name of Zahn, who had a gift. With ravens as a guide and a Greek Chorus, Zahn eventually winds up in the hands inexorable fate. Bummer. ~_^
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Current Progress: Completed
Download The Sign of the Raven


Project: L—The Package
A short-story vignette that adds on to the main story, and introduces one of the foils to the protagonist. Sadly, he's not in the main story...yet. It concerns his motivations and obsession with what comes in the mail...
Current Progress: Completed
Download Project: L—The Package


A Birthday Present
“Some people are absolutely impossible to buy birthday presents for.”
The prequel, prototype, and inspiration for A Midsummer's Present. It introduces Tonis (although at first, it doesn't even seem like a fantasy story) and his first real adventure.

Current Progress: Completed
Download A Birthday Present


Belief: An Epistolary
“Grandpa Lawrence died in his sleep. I just got the phone call.”
Chris has a crazy old grandfather who's always saying (surprise!) crazy things. What if...what if...everything he said was absolutely true? As Chris's journal goes on, all the pieces fall in place and Chris prepares to do what must be done...

Current Progress: Completed
Download Belief: An Epistolary


Belief: A Narrative
Body Disappears from Meadowview Hospital Morgue. Staff frazzled.
My hands-down second-favorite short story to Chess. Belief switches gears and writing styles (as evidence by the title) for this continuation and finale. Chris knows the truth, and he's decided to act upon it. Written to either be read afterwards or as a stand alone (complex?).
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Current Progress: Completed
Download Belief: A Narrative


Another Lexicon
“An elderly gentleman walked into the speakeasy.”
An oldie, but a goodie, and actually from a high school English class. Another Lexicon explains the old adage about why mysterious older gentlemen and 1920's slang just don't mix. You've all heard the saying, I'm sure.

Current Progress: Completed Quite A Long Time Ago
Download Another Lexicon


Random Fun

The End of Finals Spring Programming Special!
“May also contain slight amounts of Frappucchinos, tipsy aeromancers, overly intelligent mustelidae, self-inserts, theoretical physicists and former Soviet premiers, as well as used-spaceship salesmen in starched suits and fake accents.”
Featuring all of the class of the previous EoF special without the disjointed insanity, it's a sneak-peek into the shows and products that won't be gracing your screens and shelves next spring. Slightly shorter (only two LiveJournal posts) but still loads of fun, it's what happens when I have free time. It's a scary thing, really.

Current Progress: Completed (And still scaring Charity)
Download The End of Finals Spring Programming Special!


The End of Finals Special Holiday Show!
“It’s the Law of Conservation of Difficulty.”
It's long (it had to be spilt into four entries for posting on LiveJournal), it has commercials, unsolicited make-outs, destroyed head-sets, metroids, and crazy math teacher quotes. Mileage may vary. No refunds. And that's just the first fifteen minutes. When Alex's mind is scattered willy-nilly across the multiverse by College Finals, all his original characters decide to host a show in his absence without his consent inside the TV studio within the Nexus Citadel. Features special guest appearances by the characters of Alex McKaie. Read it. Laugh your guts out. Be afraid. And in-between the jokes, there might be some useful information and editorials! Gasp!

Current Progress: Completed (And still scaring Charity)
Download The End of Finals Special Holiday Show!


Links


My LiveJournal—Biweekly musings and rants that don't belong here.
My Page @ Fanfiction.net—I dislike the site, but it's there...and normally out of date.
My Page @ FictionPress.com—See the above.
My Page @ DeviantArt.com—For those rare instances when I draw or design.

Contact

Email alex@thedurandal.com

Design Notes & Credits
Site designed with Notepad, a bit of Frontpage, and Photoshop for color scheming and images.  Uses brush designs by Corey Johns and Jenna.  This text is made small and thus harder to read.  Clever, isn't it?
As one might expect, all content, works, and errata are copyright 2003-2008 by Alex Putnam