We came up with a couple of examples then and there. Casey began:
As streaks of blood obscured his vision, he saw his arm dangling by its last few sinews. The spiritual crocodile slowly approached, and he knew it would only be moments before it finally snapped his neck.
I followed it up with this:
The boy stared at the brine. He wanted--no, needed--to repeat the daily routine, the agrarian chores that were once his bane, but now, his one connection to reality. He pushed back the flood of memories--his father's sordid ties to drug peddlers and crimeland kingpins, his mother's heroin-addled madness, the murdered cop in the trunk of the family car--and laughed. It was an eerie, animalistic laugh, one more fit for an asylum than a barn.With a swift jerk of his arm, he pulled a cucumber from the salty water and whispered, "How alike we are, humans and pickles."
So, consider this post an open call for your own gritty reboots. Write 'em up, long or short, and post them in the comments section, or let us all know which stories are your favorites--or which conference stories are begging for a reboot.
I'll kick things off with a longer story. Picture it, if you will, in the voice of Boyd K. Packer.