DragonSeeds - Collaborative Stories


The Seed Paragraph

First of all, you must bear with me and understand that due to my unique nature, I prefer short stories over novels. In December 1998, I was working on some software, and suddenly had the beginning of a story idea pop into my head, which I jotted down as a paragraph, and then quickly forgot about (another annoying aspect of my personal nature.) About a month later I ran across it again, and e-mailed it to another dragon-loving friend of mine. She immediately loved it and suggested that I should e-mail it from friend to friend, letting it snowball into a single, full-blown collaborative story. After mulling this over, I had an even better idea... What if I gave each of a small group of friends this same seed paragraph, and asked them to wrap their own stories around it, letting them each develop it their own way... with a few simple rules imposed: the stories would need to contain the seed paragraph somewhere in them intact, stay G-rated, and be between 1,000 and 2,000 words. Because each unique story has grown from a common paragraph, the title of this collection of stories is "Dragon Seeds".

I awoke slowly, and rubbed the dark haze from my eyes. The desert air was cold today. It should have been daylight, but instead a black shadow hung in the air. Looking up, I saw that the sky was almost completely blacked out, crawling with thousands of swirling shapes. As I focused and my vision cleared, I could make out the unmistakable silhouettes, and my heart stopped... Dragons! In all my life I had seen only one, and that was a quick glimpse while exploring the cliffs as a child. I also remembered old legends and descriptions of the dragon, a fierce powerful creature who could appear suddenly in our reality, and with a single thought, bring death, life, order, or chaos. Dragons were rarely seen by people unless one of these events was about to take place. As I thought about this phenomenon, and now multiplied it by thousands, a hideously helpless feeling began to come over me. The dragons had now aligned, and were gliding together in a large circle overhead. Half in fear and half in awe I watched, as inside the circle, a huge dark rip began to open in the middle of the sky.

The Original Paragraph's Illustration

(The Great Rip in the Sky)

The Stories (click a story to read)

Well, the deadline is long behind us, and the stories are now finished. I have posted them here for everyone's enjoyment. I also got some creative spirit and free time during the writing session, and joined in to write my own story from the seed. In a surprising spurt of effort and creativity, I actually finished mine too. As a tangible "thank you", each contributer has been sent a small printed book of all these stories.

Here is the book cover, the original seed paragraph, my artistic (ray-traced) rendition of that paragraph, and links to each person's story. I hope you enjoy them! I am quite happy to know such imaginative and diverse friends.