Two Candidates Walk Into A Bar: Chapter 15

The latest chapter of “Two Candidates Walk Into A Bar,” can be found here. It explores a mysterious new coworker, in addition to presenting an experimental description of an online setting. But enough stalling.


Why did I miss yesterday’s update?


I have excuses to give, but only one of them matters.


Writing is a lonely profession, as many people know. And it’s one that depends on long-term gratification. To help myself with that, I take on occasional projects that have immediate benefits. Right now, I’m trying to write a novel, lose weight, prune my song collection, secure a job, and learn more about blogging. At best, I’ll see results for one of those at the end of June. All long-term and no short-term makes Nick bury himself under his covers for a day.


The next Trudge-Along Tuesday will be different. I will present to you five ChapterBuzz stories I think you should read. My goal is to get more involved with that community, so that they have a reason to read my own work, and I have someone to write that work for. A bit of short-term feedback will keep me going.

On the next Trudge-Along Tuesday, I will present to you five ChapterBuzz stories I think you should read.

You can start “Two Candidates Walk Into A Bar” from the beginning here. If you want to know how I discovered such a unique way of describing the Internet, take a look at this advice post here.


Glimmer Train Spring 2015, Part 1: FOREBODING

The time has come to keep my promise.


The first three stories in the Glimmer Train Spring/Summer 2015 issue hang on the theme of ominous portending. Each tale; “Window,” “The Bears,” and “Slaughter”; explores a different looming disaster. It may be the abandoning of family, the transformation into maturity, or just the approach of an unjust war.

If you’re going to write your own story about looming tragedy, you’ll need clarity of action and motivation. These three Glimmer Train features will show, through both good and bad examples, what I mean.

Continue reading “Glimmer Train Spring 2015, Part 1: FOREBODING”

Two Candidates Walk Into A Bar: Chapter 14

Political satire may be dead, but this novel certainly isn’t! You can read up on the ongoing drama between Amal and Henry (and also learn how to speak Republican) here:

And yes, it has been a while, so you can start the whole affair here:

Eagle-eyed readers may be wondering: How did we get to Chapter 14? The last update was for Chapter 2.

You’re not the only ones to notice that. Originally, I uploaded the first part of this novel as two mega-chapters. My proofreaders recommend spacing out the content, and I obliged. Tell me if you think the current format helps this novel, or hurts it!

(Update 5/22/17) Going Down, Slow

The number one thing you learn in college is how little you actually know.

I put out a lot of good content for this blog in 2017. Even if the posts had turned out shit, at least the writing practice would’ve helped me improve my skills. The advice column alone grew to contain 35 posts. That’s not as good a bragging point as you think.

Do I believe that every single advice post on Word Salad Spinner will help you write? Yes, I do believe that. But I don’t know that. I talk a lot of game for someone who only has a modest blog and no publications to show for their English degree. As I read blogging advice online, I learn how much work lies ahead before this blog can reach its full potential.

As always, Word Salad Spinner will provide 1,250 words a week. But for a few months, at least, the topics will be more personal, more blog-like as it were. I’ll go back to a stricter schedule when I know what the hell I’m doing. You will still see updates on Trudge-Along Tuesday (where I update the progress on my novel) and Short Story Saturday (where I talk about Glimmer Train’s short stories, and how the magazine can help both me and you become better writers). I might start sharing the content of other writers and bloggers far wiser than me. Other than that? I’m gonna just be myself. You can expect to learn more about the real me in the next few weeks…

Graduating Ass of 2017: A No Shame Theatre Retrospective (Part 1)


I’ve brought my skits, my energy, my laughter, my ambitions, and my tears, to No Shame Theatre in the past 6 years. But there’s one thing I never did. Maybe you can help me with it.

Help… a lot of my life revolves around that word. I’ve given plenty of it, and I’ve taken plenty more. Funnily enough, my No Shame story begins in 2010, a year before I even stepped foot in Iowa. I belonged to the La Grange Hometown Teen Players, LGHTP for short. It was a local acting troupe— small, scrappy, and a good way for me to have people to call friends. After its founder left, LGHTP fell into the hands of whatever parent or actor that could manage us. In the spring of 2010, when I lost my health, my school year, and all the other people I called friends, I still had LGHTP.

Until the current leader announced that LGHTP would be disbanded. A year before I graduated high school, and right before I could be the star actor of the troupe.

Continue reading “Graduating Ass of 2017: A No Shame Theatre Retrospective (Part 1)”

A New World Lies Ahead


You may have noticed a slow-down of updates here on Word Salad Spinner. There’s a simple reason for that. It’s also the reason why I’m skipping over today’s Short Story Saturday.

By the time you read this, I will have graduated from the University of Iowa, with a degree in English and Creative Writing.

After today, I will experience the first time, in my life, without school on the horizon. The future is entirely up to me.

There’s a piece of life advice that has been on my mind this past week, though I can’t recall where it’s from. It goes, paraphrased, like this: only take on hardship for your own benefit, never for the benefit of others.

Most of my life, I made decisions based on what others wanted for me. I was agreeable for them. I did certain activities for them. I believed pre-selected ideas for them. And those ideas and behaviors did improve my life, in many categories.

But now? I can see freedom, in the air, and I wonder why I didn’t see it all around me. It has always been there, for all my life. A life flying through that open air… that is a life I want.

I am grateful for the friends and family I have. They helped me through tough times, and are, in general, wonderful. But I have a skill that they cannot hope to learn. I know, better than anyone, what it’s like being me. I will take responsibility for my future, and I will let it be my own.

The chaotic blog updates will continue for as long as they need to. My time to “grow up” has ended. The freedom to live awaits. This is only a goodbye for those that wish it. Thank you to everyone who supported me on this journey. But now? I think I’ll start with a long sail, a dance over the wind, out onto that eternal sky…





















(oh yeah, I have to get a job soon)