JM Williams

A home for all things fantasy and sci-fi.

Aftermath of a Bad Decision

Jan
12
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photo by Hans Vivek

It was the worst mess Jared had ever encountered–nine years as a sanitation inspector could not have prepared him for the scene. Shredded paper was scattered all around; broken bottles were shattered on the floor, spilling their contents into a thick brown pool that smelled of urine; what were once ordered stacks of books and DVDs were now collected in a heap. The only thing that wound its way through his dumbfounded mind was the memory of a feminine voice saying, “Getting a cat will only be trouble, Jared.”

*Written as a response for the Three Line Tales Week 102 photo prompt.

I’m getting ready to send out my next newsletter, in honor of the new year. I will be including an exclusive video of myself, talking Iric and future projects, as well as the usual publication highlight and writing tips. If you’d like to see all that, and be part of the “cool” crowd, you can sign up to join the RABBLE on the right side of the page!

Thanks for reading!

~JM

Refuge — 3LineTales

Jan
05
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photo by Gemma Evans

The box truck’s paint was faded, with numbers on the side that meant nothing to Daryl. The old beast ran, which was the only thing that really mattered; that one truth had saved his life more times that he cared to count. So, he built a home inside the cargo area, a place of refuge from the maniac infested desert outside.

*Written as a response to the Three Line Tales week 101 photo prompt.

~JM

The Color of Kings — 3LineTales

Dec
23
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photo by Emily Morter

The dark lord just did not appreciate good aesthetics–color and light in particular–no matter how hard Ur-Benu tried to convince her. Why must the sky always be a gloomy shade of gray or black, when purple was the color of kings? The orc concluded that his services would be better used elsewhere, and one day, left the dark tower for good.

*Written as a response to the Three Line Tales Week 99 photo prompt.

Author’s Note: I’ve been playing a lot of Middle-earth: Shadow of War these days. It’s a game where you recruit orc followers into your army. Here’s one of the warriors I captured, the inspiration for the tale:

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There’s something about his name, and the way the deep-voiced, melodramatic narrator says “UR-BENU!” every time I click on him. Sure, he looks scary with his size, and all the fire, but he’s just a softy at heart. A fiery machine destroyer…of expectations. He is terrified of Ghuls because they threaten his kittens. Lots of kittens. He is an EPIC kitten-cuddler, his little precious-es. You really shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, you know.

Hope you enjoyed the story. Happy Holidays!

~J.M.

A Miscalculation – 3LineTales

Dec
15

Caterina watched the majestic polar bears, frolicking on dirty ground that should be paved with ice and snow. Little did she know, these creatures were placed in the arctic by hyper-intelligence beings from a distant star–close enough to keep an eye on mankind, but far enough away to be safe from the effects of the apes’ habit of self-destruction. Well, maybe those beings weren’t so intelligent…

*Written as a response to the Three Line Tales Week 98 photo prompt.

It’s been a while since I did any writing on the blog. I’ve missed the past few weeks of the 3LineTales. I need to be more diligent!

Hope you liked my little story.

~J.M.

Cold Vengeance – 3LineTales

Dec
01
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photo by Patrick Wittke

Chomper stared at the snowy ground, fuming, contemplating revenge.

James is going to pay for making me look like some sort of redneck surfer, he thought. He’s overdue for a good bite, right on the butt–biting always works.

 

*Written as a response to the Three Line Tales week 96 photo prompt.

Author notes: I don’t know what it is, but that horse looks very disgruntled about something. Obviously the hair, right?

~J.M.

The Word for Planet is Asylum — 3LineTales

Nov
23

I feel guilty for not keeping up with the blog. Of course in my defense, there’s been a lot going on. Good things, mostly (See: homepage) But still, I should try to do more, lest my writing (and thinking) muscles atrophy.

So I’m jumping back in with 3LineTales this week. Here we go!

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Photo by Tobias Keller

Mancio pulled the reins left, driving the mustangs back to the path, all the while wondering if this was what it had once looked like in New Mexico–the trees, the sun, the morning mist–as described in the books he had read when he was young. Of course, New Mexico did not exist anymore, at least not how the historians described it. That was Earth–the forsaken, blighted homeland of Mancio’s ancestors; this was Mars–the last refuge of mankind.

*Written as a response to the Three Line Tales Week 95 photo prompt. 

Ice Ice Raven – 3LineTales

Oct
26
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photo by Julien Laurent

Its name was Ice; of course it was.

Kevin held his hand out to the bird, switching on his boombox with the other–Step back, collaborate and listen…

The raven’s dance moves were uncanny.

*Written as a response to the Three Line Tales Week 91 photo prompt.

A Two for One — 3LineTales

Oct
13
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Photo by Austin Chan

For this week’s Three Line Tales I came up with two–rather obvious–responses. You guys can tell me which is better. Here’s the first try:

Cadriel leaned heavily on the bar, sipping his IPA from a tulip glass–having been around since the creating of beer, he was a bit of a connoisseur–pondering his existence. He set his cold drink down hard, watching the fog evaporate off the glass, revealing the image of a sword. Recovering from his shock, the angel of death rose from seat and approached the miscreant biker gang conversing loudly in the room’s opposite corner.

That one derives from the religious connotations of  “looking for a sign,” though with a celestial being swapped for the typical human. Here’s the next one:

Luke Skywalker rubbed away a stain on the old, decrepit bar, staring down a shady twi’lek who still had not paid for his drinks. “The sign’s a joke–an old jedi thought I might be the chosen one,” Luke said to another nearby patron, “but I never really bought that rubbish, and the New Republic hasn’t worked out as I was hoping.” Raising a hand towards the deadbeat twi’lek, Luke said, “You want to pay your bill.”

This one follows on the obvious source of the sign’s wording, which derives from the infamous “These are not the droids you are looking for,” line from the original Star Wars. Though, I’m not one for fanfic, so I don’t know how I feel about this story. Nevertheless, I felt compelled to write it. 

So which one do you prefer?

~J.M.

The Birth of a Master – 3LineTales

Oct
05
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photo by Kira auf der Heide 

“Master, I’ve completed my work.”

“What’s this?…I asked you to paint reality in its purest form.”

“This is it–here we see only that which is true to the nature of the page, air and dust and pulp, untainted by the arrogance of man.”

*Written as a response to the Three Line Tales Week 88 photo prompt. 

~J.M.

I hope you enjoyed the story. If you like what you’re reading here, why not join the Rabble, my little mailing group? I will be sending out the first exclusive bits in the coming days, including the first reveal of the cover for my upcoming epic fantasy serial, Call of the Guardian!

Only One – 3LineTales

Sep
28
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Photo by Bryan Minear

My breath is heavy; I can’t catch it, nor the blood seeping out from the slash along my side. It was a hard fight, and for a moment I thought it was over for me. But the final blow was mine, and now I can feel…the quickening! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!

*Written as a response to the Three Line Tales Week 87 photo prompt. Yes, I know this is technically four lines, but the last bit was mandatory. 

If you like what you read here, why not sign up to join my Rabble? I will be sending out my first letter in the next week, which will include an exclusive cover reveal for one of my upcoming major projects. You can sign up by entering your email in the popup or at the right of the page.