Spring Into Sci-Fi and Fantasy

We are so excited to announce the winner of our writing contest!
Keep scrolling to read the full winning submission: a rhyming fiction piece.
Also, be sure to check out our podcast to meet the authors and hear a reading of their work!

Vinny Cuadrado

Vinny Cuadrado, also known as Vinny Square, is a Creative Writing student at the University of Arizona with a minor in Film and Television. He enjoys making art and writing rhyming poetry. His passion for creativity fuels his every move and he is no stranger to submitting work to art and writing contests in the past. His graphic design skills have been recognized by the likes of Yahoo Creations, Eegee’s, and various professional comic book artists. Find his portfolio on https://vinnysquare.wixsite.com/website


A vigilante kicking ass

With a custom-made super suit,

Robot strength and knockout gas,

Criminals can’t evade pursuit.

Secrecy, his greatest tool,

Unmatched skill his greatest threat,

Avoiding methods harsh and cruel,

Pretty soon you won’t forget,

The machine who came to take you

In for your most horrid crime.

He has powers unlike you,

He fights bad guys to pass the time.

Night or day class is in session.

Who is this man? Excellent question.

Jimmy Kobol no man at all.

Cyborg really, 6 foot tall.

Mild mannered file clerk,

Seeking justice outside of work.

Hard exterior, literally,

Gentle giant, full of glee.

Like an alien from another planet,

Looking nothing like you and me,

Fell out of the sky, face first in granite,

Rescued by Jack and Julie.

They thought a meteor had struck their lawn,

Only to find what crashed was gone,

Cautiously they searched that night,

Followed footprints with dimming light.

He was nothing more than a broken soul,

Emotions unchecked, out of control,

Not an ounce of memory or data,

Given a family of 5, outside of Nevada.

They took him in, a robot in need,

Gave him comics he learned to read,

Morality, kindness, gentleness, and speech,

These were the lessons they were qualified to teach.

Burton, Hemingway, Edgar Allan Poe,

His favorite authors right beside Plato,

Always a soft spot for the comics though,

Heroes and villains, super friends and foe.

He would learn with tremendous speed,

He could even camouflage in times of need,

They named him Jimmy after an eccentric cousin,

An ordinary man, an ordinary half dozen.

Now a family of 6, parents, uncle and twins,

All that Jimmy needed, a next of kin.

Until one day came, crime had found him,

It showed him a world awful and grim.

He decided then just what to be,

A hero the whole world can see.

With heroes of the past, he studied and connected,

Ancient fighting styles, a warrior resurrected,

He built his own helmet, weapons and armor,

But he needed a persona as plain as a farmer.

His family knew he was the special kind,

He put on the suit; they were of one mind.

They were proud of the man, this robot had become,

More human than them in more ways than one.

A technologic genius with a jetpack in tow.

An arm full of energy with which it would glow.

Utility belt and a samurai sword,

Optic sensors and he drives a Ford.

He got himself a job in the city,

He works for a law firm in a building so “pretty.,

The work keeps him informed about people on the run.

He stops crimes in progress for more than just fun.

He is compelled to do good in his community,

He has the talent, drive and opportunity,

To make a difference in this world of his,

And prevent evil wherever it is.

His origins remained a mystery,

Until he unlocked data with his history,

He was in fact from outer space,

A failed experiment of an underwater race.

He would have easily destroyed their population,

If not for Dr. Ziroh who brought them salvation,

He was able to trap the robot and hurl him into the stars,

But he was thrown off course by the gravity of Mars.

He landed on Earth and became a hero,

Far from the monster banished by Dr. Ziroh,

But the guilt, the knowledge of previous sin,

Made him question the real hero within.

He consulted his twin siblings Joey and Jade,

They told him he was not the monster they had made,

It was time the world knew what to call him,

He needed a hero’s identity to truly begin.

As a vigilante he took on the name Gault,

Undoing past actions, he thought were his fault,

That was the name of the planet he hailed from,

He understood his past but embraced what he could become.

We now find our hero engaged in combat,

A self-proclaimed villain is the cause of that,

Thrill-seeking criminal incites pointless havoc,

Unafraid to use means borderline graphic.

He calls himself Gruesome and lays on the trigger,

His biggest assets are greed and vigor.

Less than a match for Gault and his arsenal,

Gault carries more than arms, he carries a soul.

Gruesome takes a hostage and enters the bank,

A poor boy whose heart just now sank.

Gault appears compliant and pretends to be floored,

But he forms a plan and glances at his sword.

He raises his hands further playing along,

“Defeat” couldn’t be any more wrong.

In the blink of an eye, Gault calculates his trajectory,

In one sudden move he achieves victory.

Gault sends his sword flying across the bank lobby,

It quickly removes the gun as things get foggy,

A smoke bomb detonated, and the hostages run clear,

A feeling grows in Gruesome; he is overrun with fear.

Gault jetpacks closer, stealthy and silent,

Gruesome staggers in the haze, a short-lived tyrant.

He turns a corner and finds a fist waiting for him there,

Knocked out and in custody ends this Gruesome affair.

Our hero leaves the scene of the crime,

Flies away after spending his time,

Making sure everyone is okay,

An act of heroism, a touching display.

His next adventure awaits him somewhere,

And when he finds it, he will take care,

To ensure the safety and preservation of life,

Head-to-head with struggle and strife.

Departing himself from the shortfalls of his youth,

A never-ending battle for justice and truth.