Monday, September 15, 2014

Legs and Ego: Last Chance to Win Glory O'Brien ARC!

It's a month until launch day and I still have two (TWO) advanced reader copies of GLORY O'BRIEN'S HISTORY OF THE FUTURE left to give away. Twitter friends asked if I was going to have another contest and I said yes. And that's why we're gathered here today.

You can win one of these lovely ARCs no matter where you live and you have until Friday, September 19th, 2014 at 11:59 PM EDT to enter. You may enter as many times as you like, but please remember that quality matters. A lot.

  1. You have to write a story.
  2. You will enter by leaving your story in the comment section of this blog. NOTE: Comments are moderated. If you don't see your story immediately, that's fine. When my moderator wakes up she will post the story. 
  3. Your story has to be under 100 words. Preference: It should be longer than 50. 
  4. It has to start with the word "Legs"
  5. It has to end with the word "ego"
  6. Entries will be judged by a panel of small rodents with bushy tails and legs and egos. 

Rules are rules. 
If you choose to stray, that's fine except you can't win.

Bouns Points.
If you tweet, retweet or spread the news in other ways you get bonus points added to your entry. You can let me know how you spread the word in your comment.

Bonus Bonus Points.
The paperback of Reality Boy comes out next Tuesday. If your entry is amazing beyond words and/or makes my judges pee themselves laughing, you will also win a signed copy of Reality Boy in paperback.

Added Bonus Prize.
If your teacher uses this prompt as a classroom writing exercise and you (or your teacher) win, I'll throw in a free set of A.S. King books (one copy of each book) for your teacher's classroom library. Seriously. I will. I'm not kidding.

Added Bonus Advice.
While I know that legs seem to be seen in a suggestive way by some, my squirrel judges aren't huge fans of the sexualization of body parts, so your chances are low if you go that route.

Go forth!
Tell people.
It's fun.
I promise.


Maggie said...

"Legs straight. Arms curved. Fifth position. Releve."
Don't check the mirror. Don't look down. Count and breathe and--
Ugh. No.
"Again, girls. Legs straight, arms curved…"
You're not going to pass out. No one ever actually passes out except for Libby Reynolds and she brought a can of flavored air for lunch one day, no joke. Breathe and count and--
That sucked.
It's okay. She's not looking.
"Again! Again! Legs straight…"
This time you'll be perfect. This time you'll nail it. Nothing but light and beauty. Count and breathe and--
Did she see?
So much for ego.

Karoline said...

Cool contest, here is my entry:

"Legs must be had to dance, she concluded, having looked at the toes, knees and elbows all trying their best to move along to the rhythms on the dance floor without much luck. It seemed hopeless and yet they tried their best, fitting for members at the Body part Ballroom, members who were but fragments of something more and still had their fun on their own together. She smiled over their perseverance and then skipped in a Leg’s way of skipping to the dance floor, feeling as free as a Lego block without an ego."

namelessteen said...

"Legs?" I ask.
"Legs." Lucy replied, "More specifically thighs. Especially when they're wearing shorts."
The waitress brings over our drinks.
"I can't help it. If she has nice thighs I'm already on my way to her bed."
"You are so easy." I tease taking a sip from my drink.
Lucy shakes her head, "if I'm so easy would Josh be falling over himself to ask me out? Besides I like your legs way more than Josh." Her hand squeezing my thigh. "But don't get any ideas. We wouldn't want your bed to be too small for me and your ego."

Unknown said...

“Legs or thighs? Come on. Make up your mind.”
“Geez! Don’t rush me, Johnson. It’s not as easy as it looks.”
“You wanna live or die? Choice is yours.”
“But---she was our stewardess!”
“Well, yeah, but now she’s your only ticket off this island alive! Make a choice, damn it!”
“Leg! All right! I’ll take the leg! Reminds me more of a pig roast that way.”
“Whatever---I deserve the thigh. I’m bigger than you.”
We were hoping it wouldn't come to this, but the gravity of our situation grew heavier and heavier like Johnson’s ego.

Anonymous said...

Legs McGee was first in his class. He'd been first at everything his whole life until he'd started a macrame class. He wasn't very good at macrame. He often wove the wooden beads in at the wrong places or missed a knot so his plant holders hung lopsided. He gave them as gifts to his family and friends for years, and no one mentioned it until recently. His Aunt Sally said, "Legs, these plant holders are useless." Somehow, this did not interfere with his overbearing ego.

Eric Devine said...

“Legs? What do I do with my legs? Is that a real question?”

Ted’s therapist answered with her eyes. Furtive. Unsure of their certainty.

He rubbed the legs in question. The wiry fur of hair, the calloused knees.

“You see what you did there, right?” Eyes no longer furtive.

Ted looked at his cupped hands, embracing the air, and his posture froze. Then as realization does, it pinned him to the moment. One now repeated too many times. Memory more elusive than injury.

He wanted to curse, but thought better and, instead, answered the question. “Stroked your ego.”

Adrienne said...

Legs might be dwarfed in a basset hound, but Huckleberry made another mighty leap towards the countertop. Damn woman had pushed the butter dish to the back again. How was he supposed to get any? It was the second time this week and it was only Tuesday.

He backed off a bit and sat, thinking. He let a little drool drop, then a little more. If he couldn't have the butter, maybe he'd leave a puddle of drool for her to slip in later. He breathed deeply, the deep breath of a yoga guru, then, exhaled his ego.

Anonymous said...

Legs encased in pantyhose make his heart race. Feet excite him equally as much. Skirts flatter them but boots hide them.

Her early questions about what he liked elicited tame information about his desires. For every answer he gave, she had five new questions. Slowly, she pulled out his secrets. His dark desires.

She had many similarly wicked thoughts but nowhere his guilt about them. Every time he shared something new he expected her to run away from him. She never flinched. She wanted him. Normal, well-adjusted, and happy, she lifted his broken ego.


Deyse said...

That was fun (but also so hard to write only 100 words)! Here is my entry:
"Legs entangled. Two of them. Entangled in their own world. Legs sitting on airport chairs, crying and holding on.
‘I’m sorry’ said Alex, trying to smile but there was no need to pretend with Cassie.
Cassie was crying. ‘It’s okay, just kiss me’ and they kissed until the last call of the airplane lady. And this was their goodbye.
Both of them cried, for the break up, for not being the happy ending for each other but they also knew they are one step close to their happy ending and this made things easy for their egos."
That's it, good luck everyone!

ana said...

"Legs, all I could see were hundreds of legs running towards a few arcs of a book I already loved. And I was in my crutches because of what happened yesterday, Jack –that jerk - made me fall and I couldn’t even try. That’s when I see a pair of legs running towards me. Jack -an arc on his hands- smiles and says it's for me. I feel my heart beating fast, and he says joking "I'll say I did this out of guilt, because if I told you the real reason, it would be too good for your ego.

(It's 1:35 am and I just saw your tweet and I had to try, sorry for my English!)

ana said...

"Legs, all I could see were hundreds of legs running towards a few arcs of a book I already loved. And I was in my crutches because of what happened yesterday, Jack –that jerk - made me fall and I couldn’t even try. That’s when I see a pair of legs running towards me. Jack -an arc on his hands- smiles and says it's for me. I feel my heart beating fast, and he says joking "I'll say I did this out of guilt, because if I told you the real reason, it would be too good for your ego.

Bill McCloud said...

So far I have posted info on the upcoming book 3 times on my FB page, calling it the book I'm most looking forward to reading this Fall. ...

“Legs give you propulsion, but heart gives you drive.” You know, I can remember when what you found inside a fortune cookie was a real honest to God fortune. Now it’s always some lame proverb, or obvious statement, or feel-good comment. A real honest to goodness fortune. That’s what I want. I want to know what lies ahead of me, around the corner, and over the hill. You can have your cookie back. False advertisement. Wait! Go ahead and give me one more. Well, good grief! “Enlightenment is disappointment to the ego.”

Zach J. Payne said...

"Legs is a dumb name for a dog." Amelia said "dumb" like it was a mortal sin, almost too judgmental for a nine year old.

"Don't listen to the meanie, Legs," Caro picked the malnourished creature up. It'd been uncreatively named after its most absurd feature. It was a tiny rodent walking on stilts.

"He knows I'm right," Amelia cooed.

"You're wrong." Caro was 24, theoretically more mature than her sister.

"No, you're wrong. That's what mom says.

"That's her ego talking."

"No, those aren't her egos, they're mine!" Amelia grabbed the dog and ran screaming "Leggo my ego!"

I shared on my FB and talked about it on my tumblr (thetealeafdragon). I had fun with this! I spent the day around 9 year olds, God help me.

Unknown said...

Legs are not supposed to meet other legs under tables. That’s a golden rule. I felt myself blush the moment her knees bumped mine. The colour burnt its way across my cheeks and when I looked up I knew, again, she’d done it on purpose. Her smirk told me she liked the affect her presence had on me. It was a smirk I’d misread for months. I probably still would have misread it today if they hadn’t told me she only liked boys. I guess even some silly girl with a crush is good for the ego.

Haleigh Letendre said...

"I did it. I had to." I hit the breaks. I smell burning rubber. I can't breathe. She looks at me and tears drip from her face. She keeps repeating "I'm sorry." And rocking back and forth.Then she mutters "If it wasn't for his ego."

Lisa Aldin said...

Legs, they vanished first. People walked without them, somehow, seemingly, on air. They plucked along down sidewalks, pushing strollers, walking dogs, checking the mail, just…without legs. It’s as if an artist took an eraser and scribbled them away.
It happened to me, too. My body parts disappeared, one by one. Except my hands, they remained. Now I sit on my porch, watching floating fingers hurry about, just a pair of paper-rough hands and an ego.

Unknown said...

Legs aching, lungs burning, eyes watering. I rounded the final turn in my first marathon. I can see the finish line yet it seems so far away. I can feel my legs moving but I can't see myself going anywhere. I find myself aching for the opportunity to say that I finished but ultimately looking for the pride to say that I had won. The one thing I didn't see was the man behind me. He sped past me like a speeding bullet, and won. Like a balloon pierced by a needle, deflating instantly, so did my ego

Written by: Oliver Cowley (Student of Mr. Eric Devine)

Anonymous said...

My honors English 9 students wanted to give this a shot. Here are their entries:

Legs can really get in the way of your life. When your legs hurt it is very hard to perform to your best ability at whatever you are doing. That is why it is very upsetting when my volleyball coach makes us do squats on the day before a game. I woke up today and I could barely move because my legs hurt so badly. I didn’t know if I would even be able to jump at our game but I ended up having the game winning kill in the championship game and that really boosted my ego.

“Legs.” Dean says, “Chicken legs, turkey legs, any kind of legs are always the best.”
“Dean, shut up. Nobody cares about your meats. Focus on something more important like school or anything else. Not everyone can share this ‘love’ of meat.”
“You know what Logan? I’m tired of this, I’m leaving. You better watch your ego.”

Legs are a coded message. Legs are transportation, Legs are a variable. You can have two or four or even 8. Frogs have legs, dogs have legs, and ants even have legs. They are something that everyone in this world has in common. Legs show you that even though I have two legs and a spider has 8 we all get to live in this world together. Some legs are short, some legs are long. Legs are big and small. Legs are even thick and thin. Some legs are even bigger than your ego.

Legs of the chair. They never stay balanced, always moving and wobbling never staying put. When all you want is a seat you get a ride of wobbling side to side. It should really be added to the kid section of amusement parks, it would make quite a cheap ride. They’re like bad teams, they don’t want to work together for one goal, which is to stay balanced. They would rather work with certain legs and just stay unbalanced. They have a mind of their own doing whatever they want whenever they want. The real problem is their ego.

“Legs” Frog Legs, everywhere.
I can still remember the look on Henry’s face. Our prank was hysterical but made me feel like I wouldn’t eat again then I puked, all over the place. Here is a crazy story for ya. I’m Charlie and I have this friend named Henry and he’s kinda obsessed with Frogs. Henry has a crush on a girl in our grade named Mary and she hates frogs! Well, you see, Henry and I broke into her house and put frog legs all over her kitchen and let me tell you it ruined my ego.

Legs are a very weird thing. They help you stand and if you hurt them you can’t walk on them. My name is Ava and I make prosthetic legs for a living. I have had many clients, some weirder than others. One time there was a 15 year old kid named Marcus. He had told me that he lost his leg because he was riding a dirt bike with his friends and he accidentally ran into a tree. He said it very much deflated his ego.

Legs are used for running, walking, skipping, jumping, and a whole bunch of other things that I can’t be bothered to name right now. Mostly because I’m bitter I can’t use mine. This fact stopped bothering me a while ago, though what is annoying is the fact that others use theirs without even thinking about it and are completely unaware of the fragility of legs. I wasn’t aware and look at where I’m at now, ranting about legs from a wheelchair. So be careful with your legs and turn down your ego.

Legs have been underestimated. Now legs can shape your life, you can now use your legs for energy. You plug your charger into your leg and you have a charger. But they can also be your demise. Every time you use them you take a few days off of your life. So in return you shouldn’t use this tool willy nilly you should use it to your strength and budget your time with it. Now here is a slight boost if someone boosts your ego you get more energy for the leg now that’s an excuse for a big ego.

Anonymous said...

More English 9 entries:
Legs, they’re funky. Almost everyone has them. I have legs, Unicorns have legs, we all have legs. Legs can be long or short. They consist of these things called knees that enable you to bend without snapping them in half. Knees are weird too, especially the fact you can move your knee cap around and that’s perfectly normal, like yeah let me just put my kneecap to the side. Oh, by the way, it’s totally weird if you can bend your leg over your head if you’re a guy. Yeah man, I bet I just ruined your ego.

Legs are weird. They are long and some skinny, not mine, and they’re all bumpy. Why does the knee pop out? Is it like a hill for all of your leg hairs to feel like they’re the kings and queens of your leg? NO! What about your calve is it like the butt of your leg? Like, “yeaah check out my calves?” Why do legs grow hair? You know, it would be nice if I didn’t have to shave my legs every stinkin day! Or you could just be that person who laser removes hair with a big ego.

Legs thousands upon thousands of legs piled in the biggest mound of legs the world has ever seen. Nobody has a bigger pile of legs than the Leg King Cornelius. Everyone is envious of them, for nobody has taken more legs than he. Anyone who has disobeyed King Cornelius gets their legs chopped off with a rusty hatchet. Then nobody can try to escape the shame of having upset King Cornelius, by passing off the missing of their legs as an accident, are branded by the mark of the Cornelius. This bounty has given him a very big ego.

Legs are what keep me moving through the forest. The bottom of my legs are covered with a tough rubber and tied together with string. The tough rubber crackles on top of branches and breaks it like a kit-kat. My legs pass through thorn bushes as they hold my legs back like a cat clawing me and trying to stop me. My legs arch up over an enormous log that has fallen over, while my brother follows behind. I feel very tough with my powerful legs. My stronger brother, I call him amigo, because he has an amazing ego.

Legs are giant palm trees, I am the palm tree. They are there to support you and help you through simple or even hard things. When someone is not there to keep you upright, your legs will. Even though legs are weird they’re a part of your body, whether your legs are short, long, skinny or chubby, they are just legs that are always going to be weird, but don’t let your legs ruin your ego.

Anonymous said...

More English 9 entries:

Legs everywhere, I see them all the time. In fact even though mine do not work I can still see them too. When I was nine years old I was diagnosed with blood cancer. They said I wouldn't survive, but I did. They said without the treatment that immobilized me I had about a 2% chance for living, with it I have about a 10% chance of survival. It’s a rare disease that took me over, even though I cannot remember the exact name. Then at the hospital I died. That didn't exactly help my ego.\

Legs are the first thing I see approaching the sight of the accident. No body, just legs. I start to smell the sickening odor of rotting flesh. I see another set of legs, these ones attached to a body of a young boy. I keep on walking knowing that I can't help that young boy. I see more like the boy, on the ground with little evidence number cards placed around them. What drives someone to murder? Is it genetics? Is it the person's upbringing? In this case it’s neither, somebody seeking revenge because of a bruised ego.

Legs, burning, I couldn’t look back for the guards were right behind me and it would only slow me down. I had to find somewhere to hide. I jumped behind a towering tree and watched as the guards passed. Once I thought they were gone I emerged from hiding and looked around, “No one can catch Jack the Reaper.” I said aloud. Then all of a sudden I heard an echoing bang, ears ringing and head aching I fell to the ground. Why did I have to have such a big ego?

“Legs” Julie thought. “If only I could have legs.” “I wonder what it would feel like to have my heart pumping out of my chest because I was running so hard. Or feel the exhaustion in them after a long run.” “Just what would it be like to have legs?” “I just know I would be the best runner in the world if only I had legs.” “But I wouldn’t be cocky like those Olympic runners; no I wouldn’t have a big ego.”

Legs, they're so cold. They’re dangling off the boat into the cool water which I cannot see. I think I’m in the ocean but I’m not sure, I’m blindfolded though. Men are talking behind me about some shipment that’s late, “The cocaine container isn't here!” one of the men yelled. “It must be late, the dealer always delivers.” I hear what I think is footsteps encroaching me and I’m terrified. Suddenly there are hands under my arms; my first instinct is to fight. Then I’m in the water, it’s so cold. I’m dead and so is my ego.

Legs, arms, dead corpse were all I saw. That’s what I saw every day of my life. My job is to bury the dead in the Civil War and I see at least 200 dead corpses a day. One day I came up to another dead corpse and as usual I started to dig a hole for the body but then I looked down again and saw a face that looked like mine. Laying on the ground, my brother. That’s the last time I saw him and my best memory of him was that he had the biggest ego.

Anonymous said...

Last of the English 9 entries:

Legs… arms… the few items I could manage to tell exactly what they were in the mangled heap of flesh and bone. The smell was of something like no other. At first I tried to hold my breath but even then it seemed to boil me alive. I eventually gave in and the smell overcomes me. They threw me into this pit of despair for a crime I had never committed. We had been driving through the desert, music up and windows down, and we decided to pull over. That’s when things quickly began killing me and my ego…

Legs. I lost mine three years ago on October 29th. It was dark outside and my mother was rushing me and my little sister to see my father was in an accident. My mother was hysterical and not alert. My sister was upset because I was holding one of her stupid Barbies. She screamed for a minute before my mom turned and almost yelled when I saw it coming. I knew it was over. That night I lost my father, my little sister and my mother because of a stupid Barbie doll with blonde hair. I lost my whole ego.

Legs made of gingerbread run across the table full of flour and dough making its feet sticky. Now I would use him or her but it had just finished baking and was not yet identified. As the little thing ran across the table trying to figure out what was happening, the chef grabbed the little thing which he realized to be a man and shoved him down his throat before he could figure out what he was like, his ego.

Legs start shaking under the desk. Sweat drips down the center of my back. No, this can't be happening now; I took my medicine this morning. The teacher said I can’t leave the room during the test or I will fail. Lower abdomen seizes into a vice-grip cramp. Focus, focus, mind over body, right? Stomach churning and I don’t think I’m going to make it. Alright, I just have to raise my hand and go, abandon the test and my grade. Pzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. Just another fart-bruise on my freshman ego.

Madison Ayers said...

Student of Mr. Devine, Madison A.

Legs running in synchronicity as the starter's gun fires into the crisp fall air. Spikes hit the gravel like a runner's symphony, bracing themselves for the steep descent down the muddy hill.

Some runners cringe with harried tension, digging their newly chewed fingernails into their palms. Others lean forward, embracing the adrenaline rush as they race past others, crushing their ego.

Unknown said...

Legs that go on for eternities. A smile that’s both billboard and bedroom appropriate. Hair as impossible as fairytales. Clothes as shiny as your ambitions.

I used to look at you and your glow-in-the-dark universe and I wish you knew how many times I wished I had your life.

But I’ve forgiven you---and me, too. It isn’t your fault that you’re choking on corsets while I’ve nothing but skinny smiles, ribboned grimaces and mental catwalk wars with myself. Or that we live in a world where people remember you for your big boobs and me for my big ego.

Unknown said...

Legs that go on for eternities. A smile that’s both billboard and bedroom appropriate. Hair as impossible as fairytales. Clothes as shiny as your ambitions.

I used to look at you and your glow-in-the-dark universe and I wish you knew how many times I wished I had your life.

But I’ve forgiven you---and me, too. It isn’t your fault that you’re choking on corsets while I’ve nothing but skinny smiles, ribboned grimaces and mental catwalk wars with myself. Or that we live in a world where people remember you for your big boobs and me for my big ego.

Anonymous said...

Ms. King,

Thank you for this tremendous opportunity! My kids have loved writing these creative stories and spreading the word on twitter (I even had parents retweet your contest guidelines).

Without further ado:

Thoughts of a Spider
Legs are extremely important. So how am I made fun of for having so many? Shouldn’t it be the cream of the crop for having eight? Humans think they’re hot stuff, but they only have two. Psh.

I get screams. I get newspapers, books, even flyswatters! The disrespect is entirely degrading.

Sometimes I do feel all big and bad, you know because humans are so afraid of me. But then I get the underside of another ratty old sneaker aimed at crushing my body and instead I continuously feel the shame of my bruised ego.
-Mollie Hiss

Legs. Legs. Legs. Everywhere. They’re long, they’re beautiful. Dresses wrapped and cut just so. Heels giving the foot a perfect arch. Such suspense in waiting, such thrill in performing, the runway the destination.
The audience only saw this display, this masquerade. Behind the scenes was all a ruse to bring a lie to stage. Beautiful they all were, but in a sickly way. A kind of beauty you think of belonging in funeral homes. The skeletons were prim, proper and concerned themselves with makeup, hair. No thought to a personality, an ego.
-Ally Smith

Legs in my leggings, so tight. The colors of the leaves, so bright. My uggs so soft and warm. Ready for the coming wind storms. Early morning trips to Starbucks. Forever in line, just my luck. My pumpkin spice just sitting there. The lovely steam floating through the air. The boy at the counter gives me a smile. Paying my bill seems to take a while. So we go over our daily “Hello’s” and i walk out the door with a boosted ego.
-Emma Fisher
Legs were all I saw when I looked up to what should’ve been the sky. Then suddenly, as I felt my bones beginning to crack with each assault I realized what had happened. That stupid horse had bucked me off! Now here i lay. being pounded by hooves and slowly beginning to feel my body accept death. All of a sudden, i saw the red and blue light of an ambulance and knew i wasn’t lucky enough to just simply die. I realized I’d never jockey again and there went my ego.
-Cassie Pelphrey

Legs. Why’d it have to be my leg? Not a day since I was born have I had my own legs. I didn’t understand why I was one of the most unlucky people on earth, but I was. I used to cry a lot, right with Scarlet, we both were so unlucky. Everybody always wishes they had a twin, but nobody wants a siamese twin. Siamese twins are what my sister and I are; what we’re cursed as, and we happened to share our legs. That would be why neither of us have ever had an ego.
-Cassie Pelphrey

Legs. That explosion had taken my legs. I sat up in my hospital bed for the forty seventh day in a row and by now! I knew what I was expected to do. Never did i think I’d have my days planned out for me down to the minute, but here i was, now void of ego.

Anonymous said...

More WJHS entries:

Legs don’t mean living.
They’re not required for breathing.
Legs don’t make the struggles less hard
Or the world less hateful.
Legs aren’t needed to laugh
Or necessary to love life.
And though you’re stuck in a limbo all day,
A slave to a world full of legs,
At night you can dream
Of running or splashing in streams,
But the most important thing to know
Is that legs don’t make an ego.

Legs will help me run away from my life into something new where I don’t have to hide. I won’t have to tip-toe around other people’s egos, afraid of stepping too far. I can fly if I want to, leaving the laws of physics in the dust. The massacre will disappear, and I won’t have to fight anymore. I will live how I want, disregarding the criticism, nurturing my shattered confidence, and maintaining a healthy ego.

Anonymous said...

Legs. My legs. Running down the hall, zig zagging between people. Running to get to my patient. He is in post-op for a tibial plateau fracture.
“I have a headache, blurry vision, and my left arm isn’t moving.”
“Is he on blood thinners?”
“His brain is bleeding get him to an O.R.”
As I rush to the O.R. for my first solo brain surgery. I realize nothing is as big as my ego.
-McKayla Crosby

Legs are supposed to be partners, at least thats what I thought.
“Hey Rachel! Can you stop rubbing against me? We are starting to chafe.”
“But my skin is starting to dry up and hurt.”
“Well it is not my fault that our human likes chocolate a little bit too much and insists on wearing shorts.”
“Hopefully she puts baby powder on.”
“She probably won’t, she doesn’t to look like a baby.”
“Why do people care so much about their ego?”
-McKayla Crosby

Legs that carry me away.
Carry me from that awful place.
Away from the Tyrant of all Tyrants
Don’t look back and just keep on going.
I don’t need them; I will be fine on my own.
But all I can think about is, was there anything I could have done to deal with his big ego.
-McKayla Crosby