Steve Grogan is an ongoing contributor to Writer to Writers. He has published several short stories on the site, which can be found on the main page under the heading “Steve Grogan’s Fiction.” He has had several poems and short stories published over the years, some of which are available on Amazon. (See the announcement at the end of this post.)
He is the writer and creator of the ongoing, zombie, post-apocalyptic, Romero-meets-Dungeons-and-Dragons webcomic REDemption. Alternatively, Steve describes the comic by saying, “It is to zombie fiction what KILL BILL was to kung fu movies: everything I love about the genre housed under one roof and mixed with my voice.”
September 21, 2008
Have you ever woken up and had no ambition to do anything? Literally right off the bat, you know you are in no mood to get a damn thing done? There is no rhyme or reason for feeling that way. After all, you just woke up! How can you be so bummed out already? Well, that’s how I felt this morning. Didn’t feel like writing down a single word in this journal today. In fact, I’m surprised that I’ve even made it this far.
The only thing that keeps my pen moving is my need to understand this situation. What made me this way? For some reason, I am positive the answer is in my past somewhere. If not, then I don’t know what I’ll do, but until I reach a determination, I’m going to keep on plowing through the memories.
After my pre-licensing class I was so busy working both jobs that I completely forgot to call Stacy. My usual routine was: wake up, take the bus to Value Scripts, take the bus to Price Chopper, take the bus to my motel, eat, shower, and sleep. Rinse and repeat. Day after day. Slaving my ass off to save up for an apartment and a car. Those two things were more important than getting laid.
Accidental or not, it was this attitude that endeared Stacy to me only further, a fact I quickly found out on the day I discovered her folded-up number in my wallet and decided to give her a call. This was almost a month after she gave it to me. Part of me wanted to just throw the number out, figuring she wouldn’t even remember me. That was my old self-defeating mindset talking. But another part of me (the stronger part) said, “You’ll never know if you don’t try.”
I decided to call her number, and I was graciously rewarded. Her enthusiasm at hearing my voice oozed over the phone.
“I didn’t think I’d ever hear from you again. You sure do like to keep a girl waiting, huh?” she asked me jokingly.
“Well, you know, you ladies don’t show any interest unless a guy dangles a carrot like that,” I said with a laugh. “In all honesty I’ve been working a lot of hours at two jobs these days. I have no car and no apartment, so I really need to save up.”
“Where do you live anyway? At home?” she asked.
I scoffed at that. “God, no. I’m in a weekly motel.”
“Damn, that’s a rough spot to be in,” Stacy said.
“I know it. Hell, I’m living it!”
She responded with a laugh.
“At any rate, I wanted to call so you could know I didn’t forget about you,” I said.
“Good. I was worried that you did,” she said.
Worried, huh? That sounded promising. I told her that with being car-less and apartment-less, it was difficult for me to keep in touch with anyone on a regular basis. She was very understanding.
“All I ask is one thing,” Stacy said.
“What’s that?” I inquired.
“Don’t take so long to call again,” she said.
“Okay. You have my word on that.”
We said good bye and hung up. This new development with Stacy was quickly making me reconsider my priorities. Originally I believed it was more important to get an apartment before a car. Now I was thinking the opposite way, and for several reasons.
First, Stacy and I would be going on dates in public places for a while, so I wouldn’t need an apartment yet. Second, I wanted the ability to either pick her up or meet at the rendezvous point. Finally, if it got to the point where we did find ourselves in need of a private setting, we could go back to her place.
When I browsed the used car ads, it turned out I had enough money to buy some of the vehicles listed there. First things first though: I had to pass my road test. A quick call to DMV got me an appointment on the following Saturday morning. The starting point of the test was at the corner of 5th Avenue and 115th Street in Troy. (Technically that part of the city is known as Lansingburgh.) I went with my chest puffed out, confident I wouldn’t go home without achieving my goal. Sure enough, I passed the test. Now all that remained was for the card to come in the mail.
In the meantime, I browsed used car ads and kept stalling with Stacy. This proved to be trickier than I thought. Still being a naïve young lad, I felt compelled to give long, drawn-out reasons why I couldn’t meet up with someone. These days I just say, “Can’t make it. Sorry.” Back when I first met Stacy, I hadn’t mastered the succinct turndown. Then again, I didn’t have a situation compelling me to master it like I do now.
You know what I just realized? I have spent all this time talking about Stacy, talking about this, talking about that, but I haven’t mentioned a single word of my experiences at Value Scripts. Since it does factor in to a lot of what happened to me later, I think my next step should be to write about my job. That means rewinding things a little, but so what? This is my damn journal and I can write it however I please!
Still, for now it’s late. I can start writing about the job tomorrow.
If you like what you have read and would like to purchase this serialized novel as one complete PDF, then please send $3.50 to Steve via PayPal: firstname.lastname@example.org
Also, don’t forget to check out his other writing at the following links below:
Author: Redemption Comics
Steve Grogan was born in the often-filmed city of Troy, NY. He has written in a variety of formats (novels, short stories, poems, screen and stage plays, blogs/articles) and genres (horror, science fiction, fantasy, mystery, drama).
Steve is also a father, a boyfriend, a musician, a fitness fanatic, and a martial artist. He has been studying Wing Chun Kung Fu since 1995, and he maintains a blog/YouTube channel that describe his training habits, epiphanies, and advancement. It also candidly discusses his stumbling blocks, such as his struggle with nutrition and mental health issues.
He is no relation to the New England Patriots quarterback from the 1980’s.