Many people are under the impression that
writers and artists create characters out of thin air. They
believe that with the simple use of brain power, one can create
vibrant, unique characters, with interesting backgrounds, strong
personalities and excellent taste in alternative music.
Every creative person you've ever seen, met or heard is actually
a client for an exclusive company called Creative
Notions, Inc., the original idea factory.
For about $12 a session, CNI will give you access to a machine
that opens rifts into alternate realities. Once you get the
hang of the computer software, you can track down an interesting
person in an alternate universe, interview him/her/it and complete
your story in no time.
This is how I initially met Mark Mammon,
(Mark is actually a version of me from an alternate universe.
CNI was running a special that week.) Every few months, when
I'm inspired to write a Fix story, I go down to CNI (located
in downtown Camden, NJ) and summon up Fix. What follows is a
transcript of our last talk together. Observe the creative process
in action and enjoy these scenes from past Fix adventures!
The CNI rift matrix generator hums
for a few minutes. On my computer monitor, Fix's office appears
on the screen. Fix is sitting alone in his office reading
Rolling Stone when a sheaf of white light appears in his office.
Knowing what this means, he makes an annoyed face, picks up
his hat and trenchcoat and mutters "Twelve lousy bucks".
Then pop! He steps in the light and reappears on a platform
||Tony: Hey, Fix. Hope I'm not interrupting
Fix: (annoyed) Ah, get bent. Where's my money, "hack
Tony: You'll get it, "detective boy", you'll
get it. Sit down and have a Coke.
Fix: Thanks. (opens Coke and takes a sip) Hey, I just thought
of something. Did Kurt Cobain kill himself in your universe?
Tony: I'm afraid so.
Fix: Damn! We coulda made some money. Okay, what are you
writing this week?
Tony: Short story. Prose actually. I was thinking of doing
a whole anthology on you.
Fix: Don't make it too long, I got a life to lead.
Tony: I know. It's pretty interesting.
Fix: Yeah, well, you can't keep pulling
me out just on a whim. Cuts into my time. It could cause me
to get boring.
Tony: How so?
Fix: Well, you know how your Hollywood keeps dredging
up old TV shows and making them into movies? That's because
they keep wearing out the characters. They get contacted by
so many writers that they don't have time to have adventures
or be interesting.
Tony: (astonished) No kidding.
Fix: Yeah. I met Gilligan the other day. Poor bastard, no
one wants to talk to him anymore. Just keeps wandering around marinas,
mumbling to himself and wearing that same faded shirt. Doesn't even
remember what a three hour tour is.
Tony: (astonished) Whoa. Well, listen, let's not waste time.
Give me the run down on your interesting cases for this week.
Fix: Hmmm. Okay. Wednesday I got hired by this farmer to
find his missing crops. Turns out, aliens were living under his
Tony: Overdone. Next.
Fix: This old guy hired me to find a family heirloom?
Turns out he's an ancient Sumerian god looking for his soul.
Tony: Cliche. Next.
Fix: On Friday, I followed this chick who was cheating
on her husband. Turns out, cheating with another woman!
Fix: Yeah, they were naked and stuff!
Tony: Yeah, but where's the supernatural? The bizzare
twist? Where's the story?
Fix: Dude! I got it on videotape.
Tony: Hmmm, that does sound like it needs further research...
Those Amazing Fraim Brothers
At this point, Mark's
girlfriend, Mindy, enters the office on the computer monitor,
spots the sheaf of white light and enters before I can stop
Mindy: (appearing) Mark!
Fix: Oh, my God!
Tony: Mindy! You can't come in here, they'll charge me
Mindy: Put a cork in it you-- (realizing) Hey, Mark,
he really does look like you. Only a little fatter.
Fix: A little fatter?
Tony: (objecting) Hey!
Mindy: Mark, Jonny wants you to call him right away.
Something about Asgard and this hammer that belonged to his
dad or something?
Fix: What kind of a message is that?! If I took down
that kind of message for you---
Mindy: I didn't have a pen!
Mark and Mindy prepare to exit
Tony: Hey! What about my story?
Fix: I'll mail you the tape and case file. Gotta jet.
Pop! And the couple return to their own universe.
Tony: (muttering) Twelve lousy bucks...
by Tony DiGerolamo
What can I say about Brian and Brendon that won't one day be said by lonely comic book geeks muddling over price guides 20 years from now? They are a cottage industry unto themselves. A mini-2-man factory of talent that never fails to impress me with their final product. They have a style that hasn't been seen since the old EC comics and a website that hurts my computer's brain. To me, the Fraim name is synonymous with fast, professional artwork, drawn with enthusiasm and pride.
To see more of the insanity that is Tony DiGerolamo, visit his web site