Big Announcement for Saturday the 17th

witch

Margaret Hamilton as the Wicked Witch from the 1939 film “The Wizard of Oz”

This one has been in the works for months, and the story involved has been edited again and again. I think you’ll like the final result. It will become available Saturday. I still can’t talk about it and have no promotional materials to offer, but I can share an excerpt to whet your appetite.

Toto barked at the witch like a maniac, but mercifully, didn’t try to escape Dorothy’s grasp. The broomstick competed with Dorothy’s legs as to which could shake faster and harder. If the monkeys didn’t arrive soon, Glinda would grab Dorothy and send her back home. Dorothy could try to ride the broomstick back to Wicked’s castle, where she knew the monkeys were sure to take her if they’d ever show up. But she’d never ridden a broomstick before. What if she fell – or worse, dropped Toto?

At once, Glinda, the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodsman, the Lion, and the colorful, friendly, and terrified citizens of the Emerald City, looked up. There was nothing to see, not yet, but a multitude of chattering voices, the gibbering of monkeys and the fluttering of a congregation of wings was getting closer. Wicked’s flying monkeys were arriving, and there were a lot of them.

Glinda leapt toward Dorothy, but the girl wielded the now energized broomstick like a sword, poking the witch between her two modest breasts. Repelled by the dark magic, Glinda staggered backward.

Frantically imploring her fuzzy saviors, Dorothy stared upward as a thousand swarming specters blocked the sunlight above. The horde of flying monkeys descended, all thick gray fur, their wings of coordinating colors looking too small to lift their ponderous weight, but managing nicely anyway. The fez on each one’s head matched their short jackets of turquoise and scarlet, trimmed elegantly with golden yellow. Their eyes glowed with frightening malevolence for everyone in the Emerald City. Everyone except Dorothy.

Stay Tuned.

5 thoughts on “Big Announcement for Saturday the 17th

  1. I’m confused. As I recall the story, Dorothy did not get her hands on the witch’s broomstick until after she was melted, at which point no wicked witches remained to threaten anyone. The trip back to Oz was therefore uneventful, and the monkeys, like the castle guardsmen, were no longer hostile. Am I missing something that was different in the original Frank Oz stories, or did you reboot them to tell them a bit differently?

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      • Right. Thus she did. So I’m still confused. Why would Toto bark at Glinda the goodwitch, why would Dorothy be afraid of her, why would anybody be threatening to grab anyone else, why would Dorothy even think of leaving the emerald city or returning to the Wicked’s castle, with or without broom, and why would she perceive the Wicked’s monkeys as rescuers who would take her there? The implication seems to be that Dorothy has been afflicted with some insanity, perhaps by her contact with that broom. Is that what you’re writing? Some additional vignette in the emerald city, inserted after returning there from the Wicked’s castle and before the presentation of the burnt broomstick to the Wizard? Are we looking at a case of PTSD after her abduction and terrorization by Wicked, an almost failed rescue, a “liquidation”, and a still arduous journey back to the emerald city?

        If the above is just an excerpt, one must infer that your proposed insertion develops into a full episode of a deranged Dorothy descending into madness and perhaps becoming a replacement for the wicked witch of the west, and needing to be rescued yet again by her friends and restored to sanity and humanity, in order to rejoin the story at the ending with which we’re all familiar.

        How’s that for a guess, or maybe a story outline?

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      • It’s an excerpt of a short story that becomes available tomorrow. I just thought I’d provide a hint of the whole thing, kind of like a preview. You’ll have to read the whole thing to find out. I created an alternate ending to “The Wizard of Oz” which, in my opinion, is a lot more interesting than going back to Kansas.

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      • Fair enough. It’s no more outrageous or disappointing than the discovery in the canonical story that it was all a dream in a coma after being hit on the head during the tornado storm. I’ve also enjoyed other treatments that extended that story, such as the “Tin Man” mini-series set many generations in Oz after the original Dorothy, and the prequel film “Oz the Great and Powerful”, telling the story of the carnival magician who became wizard in Oz. One may wonder whether an interesting story might be concocted, though, about a Dorothy in Kansas who grows up there after her discovery that her interdimensional dream about Oz was not a physical event but one in which her mind alone had “traveled” and taken on a metaphysical rematerialization there.

        What would this girl of the 30s have grown up to become? A writer? A dabbler in hallucinogenic drugs, trying to recreate her Oz experience? Where did this girl go in the real world, with its subsequent challenges of international wars, and cultural change, and perhaps marriage and children. Think of her also coping with a phenomenon of her children inheriting a propensity to dream about Oz, not unlike the hints at the end of the Peter Pan story that he continued to visit Wendy’s children in subsequent generations.

        So many schemes,
        appear in dreams,
        and nothing is ever,
        quite what it seems.

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