As I was reviewing the list of books I read this year to compile my upcoming “Best Of 2011″ list, I thought it might be fun to try and write a short story using all of the book titles from the list. I managed to read 100 books so that made for a challenging and sometimes nonsensical story. The result is below. I hope you enjoy it. All book titles are in bold.
Strange But True
This Is A Book By Demetri Martin (but actually it is a short story by Jenners)
After The Death Cure failed and Mr. Fox died (resulting in a rather Blue Christmas), his heirs were startled to learn of The Fox Inheritance, a method of disposing of his vast fortune that would give the recipient incredible Freedom. Inspired by The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks and with some help from The Stupidest Angel, Fox had created a way of living on through his heirs. However, there were a few Complications. First of all, the inheritance stipulated that there could only be one recipient and that person had to complete several tasks first—one of which would be The Most Dangerous Thing that had ever been done. (It was designed by a Maze Runner and was a Flawless but dangerous maze that looked like Crooked Letter. Crooked Letter being the name of the town where Mr. Fox was born.) Packing for Mars would be on the agenda, as well as venturing into the Blacklands to find A Discovery of Witches (which was really just The Tea Rose from The Bucolic Plague). The final task, which would be Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, involved Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. It was going to be a challenge, to say the least.
The three people competing for the inheritance were a high-powered executive (who everyone called Bossypants and who will be known as BP for the remainder of the story), an older man named Ptolemy Grey (a lonely old man who always wondered “Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?”) and an insecure young woman named Alice (who was notable for The Redbreast and the blue breast she had tattooed those colors when she was drunk one night in Vegas. Alice has self-esteem issues and always lamented “Everything Is Wrong With Me.” It was why she had messed with her perfectly fine breasts.)
At the start of the competition, the referee yelled Ready! Player One (who was BP and a total cheater) knew he wanted to play dirty. After checking that it was All Clear, BP proceeded to Bonk Ptolemy on the head. Never Knowing what hit him, The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey were soon at hand. Then there were two competing. What Alice Forgot was that BP had been Born Standing Up and had participated in The Great Fitness Experiment that had given him an Unbroken record of winning. Knowing she was Between A Rock and A Hard Place, Alice decided she to pray to the Virgin of Small Plains for A Visit from the Goon Squad. Anyone who visited with the Goon Squad would travel to Where Men Win Glory and find The Ask and The Answer. Unfortunately, she wasn’t in a Faithful Place and the prayer didn’t go through.
Confident that the money was in the bag since he was now competing only with Alice, BP ate some Medium Raw sushi and got ready for bed. “Before I Go To Sleep,” he thought, “I should see if I can slip a Blackout drug to Alice. Perhaps The Help will deliver the Three Cups of Deceit for me.” He chuckled evilly to himself and fell asleep.
In her hotel room (as all competitors had been staying in a hotel at the start of the competition), Alice was startled awake by the drinks brought by the hotel staff. Confused about what they were bringing, she asked what is was. “Drink and you will Shut Your Eyes Tight,” said The Giver of the drink. “Well, I Am Half-Sick of Shadows and should get some sleep so I’ll drink it,” thought Alice. As soon as she finished the first cup, Alice began to smell Garlic, and Sapphires seemed to dance in the air around her. “I’m Not Myself These Days,” Alice murmured as she lost her Attachments to the world and Let The Great World Spin.
The next morning, The Leftovers of the tea were still on the table in Alice’s room. Feeling hungry, she ordered The Big Overeasy (an egg dish) from room service and began to figure out how to compete against BP. She was startled to learn that he had already completed one of the three tasks. “So Much For That,” she thought. “There is no way I can win now.” But she remembered what the Strangers At The Feast had told her the night before about The Lonely Polygamist who lived Under The Dome on The Ledge. He would be able to tell her What The Dog Saw (Dog being the nickname of The Human, Bobby) and she would have the secret for completing the hardest of the tasks. Chanting The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother as she began her journey, Alice felt everything Falling Together for her.
Meanwhile, BP—confident that Alice was out of the competition—picked some Domestic Violets and went to visit his ex-girlfriend, thinking that it might be time to take up with her again. However, when he arrived at The Unit where she lived, he found she was not happy to see him. “You’ve been Faking Smart for as long as I’ve known you. It is Why We Broke Up. Although I did One Good Turn by being your girlfriend, and now I don’t want anything to do with you. I gave you Half A Life, and now I’m ready for The Long Goodbye … the goodbye that means I’ll never see you again. In fact, I’m considering going on an Assassination Vacation, and you will be my first victim. I’ve been enjoying My Horizontal Life with lots of other men, if you know what I mean, and I will not be stopped by The Raising of our dead relationship.” Startled, BP said “But I Love You More.” His girlfriend was unmoved and BP Left Neglected and upset.
After going through The Scorch Trials and other tasks, both BP and Alice finished the final task at the exact same time. Consulting The Book of Joe (which was the book that Mr. Joe Fox had left with instructions about how to distribute his inheritance), they realized that the winner would be determined by a coin flip. The coin was provided by The Dead Janitor’s Club (an upstanding group of impartial coin flippers/zombie janitors), and Alice let BP call it in the air. “Tails,” he said. The Gods in Alabama were looking after Alice because the dead zombie janitor overseeing the flip said “Heads. You Lose.” BP was furious, and he stomped all over The Wild Rose and The Winter Rose that were in nearby vases.
Knowing she now had the means and the money to pursue Life, Liberty and The Pursuit of Sausages (for she was a big fan of breakfast meats), Alice thanked her Backseat Saints for all the help, decided to pursue The Happiness Project she’d been putting off forever and launched a inspirational speaking business about exercise called What I Talk About When I Talk About Running. It was a huge success. She also coauthored a book called The CHICK-tionary (a guide to raising baby chickens) and scored a number one hit with her band, Love Is A Mix Tape, with a remixed version of My Fair Lady called My Fair Lazy (which can be found on The Nobodies Album.)
Meanwhile, BP faced Ten Degrees of Reckoning and spent the rest of his life on a boat with The Wordy Shipmates, the crew that would never stop talking. “When You Reach Me,” he told his friends, “I’ll be leading The Monsters of Men.” No one knew what he was talking about, and he got weirder and weirder—making claims like “How I Killed Pluto And Why It Had It Coming.” When Skippy Dies (for that is BP’s real name), no one will cry for him for he was one of The Monsters of Templeton and no one cries for monsters, not even during The Widow’s Season of sadness.