I finished a new story this week, which means I'm still on track for one a week for October. I finished That Sinking Feeling, about Grandpa and quicksand. Originally I imagined that the comedy was all about Grandpa falling victim to quicksand while his sidekick talks about how nobody is afraid of quicksand anymore, it's an old B-movie trope that doesn't get used these days except as a joke, and anyway real quicksand doesn't suck you down so it's impossible to drown in it (although being stuck in it and dying from exposure, dehydration, etc. is possible).
But this, of course, does not make for a snappy or surprising ending. I wasn't sure where to go with it at first, but on a whim I named the sidekick "The Ironic Avenger", and so a discussion of what irony really is became part of the dialogue too.
"All I'm saying," said his current sidekick -- a young woman dressed in red and black spandex -- "is that it's ironic because I call myself the Ironic Avenger. See, you expect me to be ironic, and when I call stuff ironic when it clearly isn't, then that's irony. See? You're getting a result the opposite of what you expect, which is the definition of irony.""Kid," said Grandpa, "any concept you have to explain ain't worth the paper it's printed on." He swung his machete at tree branch. "Your GPS working yet?""Oh, it works," the woman replied, "there's just no map to plot the coordinates on, so it's essentially useless.""So we're lost," Grandpa said."Exactly! Now do you see? I said it was ironic that we were lost in the Land of the Lost! Which doesn't make any sense, so that in itself is ironic, given my name...."
So earlier today I wrote an ending in which Grandpa eventually sinks below the surface of the quicksand, leaving only his hat. His sidekick realizes that this is actually ironic, since she just got done explaining why that would never happen.
Only... in a Grandpa Anarchy universe it would of course happen exactly that way. Which doesn't mean that it's not ironic, from the sidekick's point of view, but it did kind of make for an ending that wasn't very surprising or unexpected.
So tonight I came up with a more bizarre and unexpected ending. It works better than the previous ending did, but I'm not really sure how strong the story is overall. But anyway: story finished. Yay!