"This is your life, and it's ending one minute at a time." -C.P., "Fight Club"
...being the novice scribblers that we are, chomping at the bit for a drop of notoriety from anyone willing to read our thoughts, I'd bet my left shoe that most of us have skipped over to the "I Write Like" website, and accepted the challenge of seeing who our work most resembles. Dickens or Cormier. Perhaps your fingers mimic the work of King, or Collins...someone with prowess, someone granted the opportunity to quit their dayjob and begin life anew. And in return we're allowed a moment of bliss, to daydream...to think, "So if I write like him, then maybe..."
And so I went to the site, plugged in a line or two from "South of Charm," punched ENTER, and a name spit out that I wasn't expecting, but after some thought, didn't mind in the least.
"I see the strongest and smartest men who have ever lived...and these men are pumping gas and waiting tables." -C.P. "Fight Club"
Chuck Palahniuk was born in '62, in Burbank, Washington. He grew up in a mobile home, his family living paycheck to paycheck, surviving as best they could. His parents separated when he was still a young adult, scraping by on dreams alone. With little else to strive for, Palahniuk turned to the arts, realizing his passion for writing at an early age.
"This was freedom. Losing all hope was freedom."-C.P. "Fight Club"
Palahniuk earned acceptance to Oregon University, majoring in journalism. He took a job at Freightliner, making ends meet. He eventually gave up journalism, focusing his time on writing fiction when not struggling to pay his bills. He was in his mid-thirties when lightning struck.
"You aren't alive anywhere like you're alive at Fight Club. Fight Club isn't about winning or losing fights. Fight Club isn't about words. You see a guy come to Fight Club for the first time, and his ass is a loaf of white bread. You see this same guy here six months later, and he looks carved out of wood. This guy trusts himself to handle anything."-C.P.
Like Palahniuk, I grew up in a mobile home, the bill collectors taking turns knocking on our door. My parents separated when I was fourteen, forcing a change of scenery...new school, different life, a time when keeping one's feet on the ground proved challenging. And so I turned to the one thing I always felt I was meant to do...a pen, some paper, and away I went...
I'm unable to predict whether lightning will strike or not, for that's up to my readers to decide, but good or bad, the story's on its way.
And so perhaps I write like Chuck Palahniuk, an honorable comparison...but then, you tell me...
"For thousands of years, human beings had screwed up and trashed and crapped on this planet, and now history expected me to clean up after everyone. I have to wash out and flatten my soup cans. And account for every drop of used motor oil. And I have to foot the bill for nuclear waste and buried gasoline tanks and landfilled toxic sludge dumped a generation before I was born."-C.P. "Fight Club"
...No one saw them. A pair of shadowy forms, ghostlike against the darkened backdrop of an expiring twilight. They appeared from behind an aging Dumpster along the edge of the church parking lot. Careful not to bump against its steadily decaying welds, the metal having long since fallen victim to corrosion from Ohio's inclement weather, they crept along behind the steel deterrent, patiently awaiting nightfall's obscure embrace....
...To anyone passing by on nearby State Route 62, they would've resembled the darkened forms of a pair of meaningless shadows belonging to anyone. A peculiar presence spotted through one's peripheral vision, then gone without any thought of foul play. An untimely blanket of goosebumps rising upon one's arms, then forgotten with a frown and the pull of a steering wheel.... E.G.-"The Fellas"
Perhaps one day, on a whim, Chuck Palahniuk will find himself on "I write like," entering a favorite passage of his, then hitting ENTER, and seeing my name appear on the screen. For that's why we're allowed to dream, is it not?
Thanks for reading,