My upcoming book of short short stories, Shake Away These Constant Days, originated as a project called Our Band Could Be Your Lit, in which I wrote a story under 1000 words every week. To generate this much content, I based the stories on songs suggested my musicians and writers from around the world. The original idea was 100 songs, 100 stories: find the creative common ground between two mediums and cultivating the virtue found therein.
Until September 25th, I'll be doing a blog post a day about the stories in the book. After that, it's all up to you.
Originally OBCBYL #2. Because there is no such thing as unrequited like, we will constantly heed the tension between any two people bound by unrequited love.
One brother in “Sweet Tooth” has everything, including the problems. It’s a rather uncomplicated set-up.
My own brother and I get along just fine, so I had to pull the majority of inspiration for this one from the excellent Tom Franklin story “The Ballad of Duane Juarez.” They’re similar stories—the “brother dynamic” manages to run deep with few variations—except his is, of course, better. If only I had thought of shooting a bunch of cats at the conclusion of mine.
This story is also one of the few where I was able to work in musical elements of the song—the sleigh bells, the piano. As this was the second story in the series and I was coming off a long stretch of not writing, I found a lot of ideas and details from my life rushing out. Shipping Wisconsin beef 2000 miles to California was something someone actually did when I worked at the meat processing plant, and San Diego is one of the few places outside of the tri-state (WI/IL/IA) are I’ve actually visited.
I’ve got real fights with my brother I could have pulled from if they weren’t all ancient and meaningless, but nobody wants to read about the time I punched a door because he wouldn’t let me use his Nintendo 64.
Tomorrow: A story named "What Burns Never Returns" that is based on the song "Alcoholiday" by Teenage Fanclub.
SATCD on Goodreads
Pre-order the book so every day is Spring Break.