I was a poet, or at least I tried to be. Oddly, my poetry liked to tell a story, and my fiction liked to describe things in exhaustive detail. It took me a long time to work this out. It’s amazing how blind we writers can be to our own idiosyncrasies.
I swear that I didn’t use big words just to sound snooty or impress my teachers – I genuinely liked the sound of words like “incarnadine”, “amaranthine”, “verisimilitude” (I was made fun of pretty badly for using that last one in a poem…a rhyming poem about vampires, no less).
One story I wrote that my father really enjoyed was about a man named Cornelius who dreams every night that his feet are not attached to his body. At first the feet are just sitting beside his bed: two bare feet, severed at the ankle, toes pointed toward the shaft of moonlight on the floor. The next night the feet start walking around the house without benefit of him, padding softly from room to room. This maddened Cornelius. Finally, one night he dreams that the feet are attached to him but they have a mind of their own, flinging him from one end of the room to another in a crazed dance. Well, there is only one thing for it: Cornelius lifts the ax in the moonlight, aiming for his own jittering ankles. The only problem is that this time, Cornelius is awake.
This was a part of my Poe phase.