Wednesday, 20 November 2013

So This Would Be A Celebratory Post, But....

Okay, a bit of explanation here. Today I finished the first draft of The Lost World. *Insert squeeees and whoops and screams here* And I was sooo excited! And for about two minutes, or maybe even less, I though, "Great, the first draft is done, now comes editing!" Or something like that. :P

But then, I realized that I still need to add some more onto the ending to make it more final.

Oh. False alarm? Maybe, but I don;t think so. Because, you see, that can all be part of the second draft! I don't have to worry after all! So, yes, I am a little sheepish about getting all excited about finishing and then realizing there's still work to do, but..... that can come in the second draft. :)

So have I finished? YES!!!!!!!! WHOPPEEE!!!!!!!!!! *snaps finger and shakes arms in Tevye style* But I still have work to do. And that's okay.

Well, hope this made sense, and sorry if it didn't. :) I'm not always very intelligible. Here is my little thingy about the book. AON stands for As Of Now. For this all may change, who knows?


First Word of the Book AON: Although.
Last Word of the Book AON: Tomorrow.
Word Count AON: 25,199 ( This doesn't count the title and the The End)
Number of Pages AON: 58
Main Character: Marguerite Cassandra Sanski or Rita.
Time it Took my to do first draft: Ummmm, not sure, maybe.... six months? Maybe more? Yeah, I know, I was slow. :)


Well, that's all for now! Celebrate with me, my friends! :D



Monday, 18 November 2013

November Snippets.

Okay, I think ya'll know the drill by now, so here is the link to Katie's blog (click here) and here I go!


“No! I won’t budge and you can’t make me!” snapped one woman, flapping her hands at Emily.
“But ma’am, you don’t understand. This is a matter of life and death!”
“Nonsense! I’m not budging!” And there was nothing Emily could do. Heart sinking, she stepped away.
“Nellie, dear,” a young man beside the refusing lady murmured to his own wife, “you heard the stewardess. You should get on a lifeboat immediately. This isn’t a joke, or a precaution any longer.”
“Yes!” Emily agreed, stepping forward, relieved that at least someone understood the situation. “Please ma’am, come this way with me.”

The young lady shook her head, a sweet peace on her young face. “No, Charles. I didn’t marry you last month to desert you today. Where you go, I will go,” she said simply, paraphrasing from the book of Ruth, “and where you die, I will die as well.” ~ A Night of Terror.



“I know plenty about your brother! How he was always behind you when getting praise! How he almost always let you go first when you both wanted to tell something! How time and time again he was pushed aside by you so you could be the best! How over the years he let you be the best, know the most, run the fastest, do whatever it was! He was willing to let you be better without complaining about it! That is more than you can say about yourself Rita Sanski! Your brother was admirable for his patience and kindness and love towards you ad others  than you are for your knowledge!” ~ The Lost World.


They shouldn't be whispering, Rita thought annoyedly to herself. She glanced at the clock and saw that it was been fifteen minutes exactly. She glanced at Arthur who was just then looking at the clock. She knew what they had to do. He caught her eyes, and gave a slight, almost imperceptible nod.
Rita got to her feet. “Listen everybody,” she said, softly, but not so softly that nobody could hear her. “Our time’s up. We should all stop now.”
Most of the kids put down their pencils in agreement but Jake looked at defiantly. “Who made you in charge, Rita?”
“Yeah!” chimed in his friend Samuel, “Who made you the boss?”
“Quit it, you two!” Arthur snapped, getting to his feet as well. “Rita’s right. Mr. Pitcher gave us fifteen minutes and that time is up. So put down your pencils. We aren’t babies and we know how to go without cheating. ~ The Lost World.


I hear the door open and shut softly and look up from over the edge of my now cold cup of coffee. My heart sinks and the cup falters at my lips at what I see. I know as soon as he comes in the door what this young man has come in for. The dejected face, the slumped shoulders, the slow, plodding walk all point to one thing. Rejection. ~ Classifieds-- A Snippet Story.



After a long time, a man came into the room through a tiny door on the one side. He was nearly double its size and had to nearly bend all the way down before he could fit through. Amica watched him with interest as he unfolded himself and stood up. His head almost slammed into the ceiling and he ducked cautiously.
Reaching down, he untied the the ropes that held her tight and yanked up the nail. “You’re to come before the Emperor,” he finally said, or rather growled.
“Which way do I go?” Amica asked, trying to keep her voice steady.
He stared at her as if she had horns like a bullock. “You don’t go anywhere. I take. At least for now; you won’t always have me as a nursemaid.” He jerked her to her feet and stomped out the door, one meaty hand holding tightly to Amica’s wrist. ~Flames Through Rome.








Saturday, 16 November 2013

Snippet Story.

Okay, a few weeks ago, I had an inspiration and wrote what I call a snippet story. My inspiration was this: (I think I either heard something like it or read something like it before, but I couldn't be sure.) For Sale: A ring never worn.

Now, after I wrote my snippet story, Anne-girl read it for me and told me a story like it, which I probably had heard of and just didn't remember. Hope you're following me, if not, sorry. :D She told me of how the writer Ernest Hemingway was challenged to write a story in a certain amount of words. He said, "For Sale: One pair of baby shoes-- never been worn."

That just kind of stunned me. There is so much story in those ten words. And I guess, since I think I had heard that story or something like tat before, that was what I had based my story after.

Anyway, I hope ya'll haven't gone crazy yet, and here is my snippet story, which is sort of like Ernest Hemingway's story.

Classifieds.

Back it up, go forward, back it up, go forward. I grip the wheel tightly as I inch into my parallel parking space. I can never be too careful about this kind of parking. 

There! I'm in! I park the car and turn it off, pausing to look longingly at the deserted-for-the-holidays construction site that will turn into a parking lot for the Early Morning. I can't wait for it to be finished. Just think! No more parallel parking!

I hop out of my car and breathe in the crisp, biting air. It bites at my nose, but, in direct disobedience to the song, doesn't sting my toes, which are warmly encased in my new boots.

These same boots march boldly up the street and onto the sidewalk. They make a firm, crunching sound on the hard-packed snow, which has been first shoveled aside by the busy snowplows and then has been trampled into a white walkway of crystals by people hurrying by to do last minute Christmas shopping. Why anyone ever wants to do last minute Christmas shopping is beyond me; I always have my shopping done before Thanksgiving to save time. But I guess some people like to hurry and worry.

A light snowfall starts to come down and I hurry towards the big glass doors of the Chicago Early Morning. The crisp day is tantalizing, but the warmth of indoors combined with the call of work pulls me into the office.

Swinging open the door, I smile as a wave of warm air engulfs me. I step over the threshold into the lobby and sigh with delight. My earrings, like tiny crystals of ice, dance back and forth as I shake myself, trying to get rid of the dusting of snow that has collected on my head and shoulders.

Wiping my boots, I head over to my oval-shaped desk in the back of the lobby and sit down. After arranging my things-- coffee cup on my Mickey Mouse coaster, purse on the floor at my feet, coat on the back of my chair-- I stretch my fingers and poise them over my keyboard.

My job at the Early Morning is to take note of all the Classified Ads people bring to contribute and send the people to the correct office. I also serve as a receptionist.

As I sit down, several people sitting around on the cushy couches around the lobby spring to their feet and come over to my desk. I smile and direct my attention to the first person-- a skinny man with hair down to his shoulders and a goatee that looks like it's been dipped in grease. Early Morning has officially opened for the day.

*******

About half-way through the morning, I take the advantage of a lull to review the morning's work. The ads and notices have been mostly the usual: a lost kitten for the Lost-and-Found section, an ad for babysitting-- there are always plenty of those-- a pair of glittery, high-heeled shoes for sale. This last ad I wrinkle my nose at. High-heels I like, red, glittery ones, no.

I hear the door open and shut softly and look up from over the edge of my now cold cup of coffee. My heart sinks and the cup falters at my lips at what I see. I know as soon as he comes in the door what this young man has come in for. The dejected face, the slumped shoulders, the slow, plodding walk all point to one thing. Rejection.

The young man walks slowly toward my desk, a small bag in his hand. This he sets on the top of my desk and leans his elbows on either side of it.

"Good morning, how may I help you?" I ask automatically, though I know only too well what he wants.

"I--" he swallows hard and pull a small, blue velvet box out of the bag. "Um, where do I go to sell th-- this?" He opens the box to reveal a gorgeous engagement ring, a small blue stone sparkling in the center of a band of interlaced silver.

I self-consciously slide my left hand under my desk out of sight, so the gold wedding band and my diamond engagement ring won't show. My heart aching for him, I quickly type in a few words on my computer about the ring and direct him where to go. Still, he lingers, not seeming to know what to say.

"Do you want my to send up a message to Laura, the lady you'll need to go to, telling her what you're coming about?" I ask.

He nods. "That would be nice, thanks."

I wiggle my fingers over the keys, "What do you want my to say?"

"David Petrie. Engagement ring to sell. N-- never been worn." His voices falters on the last few words and he closes the box with a snap. "Thank you very much. God morning."

He leaves hurriedly and I sigh. Poor guy. It must be so hard. My eyes sting a little and a toss my coffee cup into my trash can to distract myself. These kinds of ads come in every other month or so. But is hits me the same way every time. He had thought she had loved him, but she hadn't. This would be one more ring never worn.

The End.


              




Thursday, 14 November 2013

"Taking Pen in Hand." My Self-Challenge.

Okay, I have decided to challenge myself to finish a short story a week from the collection I've started but not finished during the month of December. I will call my self-challenge Taking Pen in Hand just for a nice name and even though I use the computer 98% of the time for writing. :)

I'll be posting at the end of each week to show my progress. This isn't something I am challenging other people to do, though you're more than welcome to join me. But who knows? Maybe by next December, I will have some more followers and this can be a blogging challenge. :)
So, starting December 2nd, (because December 1st is a Sunday) I will begin with working on Flames Through Rome. So, I will see how this goes. Oh, and by the way, if any of you are interested in doing this, feel free to do it with me! Just a suggestion, though, nobody has to. :) If you do do it, though, just comment in the comment box to say you're doing it and please link back to my blog! Thanks!


Oh, and you can use this little image if you want, too. :D


Saturday, 9 November 2013

Time For November's Chatterbox!

Okay, over at The Inkpen Authoress, it is time for November Chatterbox! Learn more here. This month's topic is death. Lovely. :P




The whole house smelled of flowers. She couldn't get away from the smell of them. The lilacs and lilies with their thick, smothering scents seemed to descend down upon her, wrapping around her like fog. And she couldn't seem to get away.

And then there were the people. Dozens upon dozens of people swarming the house, tiptoeing in their slippery shoes and swishing their shimmer black dresses and blazers. Katrina just wished they would all leave. She wanted more than anything to run away and hide. But she couldn't, of course. She had to stand, and smile, and nod, and receive hugs the whole day as people filed through the living room, looking at the casket and coming over to give condolences.

Rick was the only one who seemed to understand. He stood by her, his arm around her waist, supporting her. She wanted to bury her head on his shoulder and cry, but she couldn't. She could only stand and watch as mom kept getting hugs and smiling and talking to people Katrina hardly knew. 

But finally Pastor Renaldo came to the front of the room and Katrina could collapse onto a chair and listen to the service.


"1 Corinthians 15:55 says, " 'Oh death, where is thy victory. Oh grave, where is thy sting?' " Mr. Renaldo leaned his hands on his Bible and looked out at the people assembled. "We are gathered here today to remember Larry Stone. There are many of us who will weep and feel like saying " 'Why, Lord? Why did Larry/dad have to get cancer and go away from us all?' " And you know, we may never know until we get to heaven. Some things just aren't meant for us to know on this earth. But one thing we can do is to thank God for the time we did have Larry with us. I'd like you to open your Bibles and turn with me to......"

After the funeral there were more hugs and condolences to get through before mom, Rick and Katrina were left alone. Mom went into her room and shut the door and Rick went upstairs. Katrina stood for a moment in the middle of the living room, but the scent of flowers was too much and she turned and ran out of the house. 

Across the fields she went, ignoring the growing ache in her side from the running. Her throat started to burn and her head grew light but she kept running. The back door slammed but she didn't look back. She knew Rick was coming after her but she didn't slow, not even as her breath began to choke her, coming out in ragged, wrenching gasps. Suddenly, her foot caught on a root and she tumbled head over heels to land flat on her back. Everything went black.

Lights flashed, whistles screamed, and she heard someone calling her name from a far distance. Katrina opened her eyes, her breathe wheezing through her chest. Rick was kneeling beside her, anger shooting from his eyes, her inhaler in his hand. He helped her sit up and she put it in her mouth, her breathing already beginning to go back to normal.

When she was breathing naturally again, Rick let go of her and stared off into the distant cow pastures. He didn't look at her at all, acting as if she wasn't even there. She knew he was mad but didn't move. 

Finally he spoke. "That was because of dad, wasn't it."

She nodded painfully.

"I thought as much. It's not like you to run like that. You could have killed yourself doing that, you know," he said gravely.

"I know." There was a pause. Then, "I didn't care." 

He turned to her then, eyes blazing. "Why not?"

"Because then I'd be with dad."

The eyes softened and Rick looked away. Katrina knew he was feeling terribly sad right now, and anger was the only way he knew how to show that deep of feelings. Her heart ached, not from her asthmatic attack, but out of sympathy for him. He and dad had been so close.

"Do you miss dad, Rick?" she asked softly.

He didn't look at her, only nodded his head in one short jerk. Katrina sighed. "So do I." They sat silently for a few moments before Katrina burst out, "Oh why did he have to go away?"

It was only then that Rick turned and wrapped her in a hug. "Shhh," he whispered into her hair. "It's alright."

She pulled away-- he sounded so much like all the people who had been to their house earlier that day. "Don't say that! It's not alright! Dad's gone and he isn't coming back!" Tears had by now found their slippery ways down her cheeks and Rick's eyes were brimming.

"I know he isn't coming back," he said finally. "But we'll see him again one day. Remember what Mr. Renaldo said? We need to praise God, not question His Will. He knows best. He always does"

Katrina leaned against him. "I wish people didn't have to die, Rick. It's so hard for the people left. I hope I die before anyone else in this family, that way I don't have to miss them when they die."

He hugged her tighter. "What about us, Kat?"

Katrina sniffed. "Fine, we can die at the same time."

He laughed then, just like dad used to, and Katrina closed her eyes. "You sound like daddy."

He kissed the top of her head. "I'm glad. I wish you could have sent more time with him, Kat. I was with him so much in the truck, but you were almost always at home. I-- I wish I could make it up to you."

She smiled sadly. "Make it up to mommy."

Rick turned and gazed toward the house. "She's the bravest woman I know, isn't she Kat?"

Katrina nodded. "The bravest ever."

"We need to be brave for her sake," Rick said, standing up. "Come on, let's go back."

Katrina climbed to her feet, holding onto his hand. "Okay Rick. But you can do one thing for me."

"What?"

"Please take the flowers out of the house," she sobbed, breaking down again.

"Oh Kitty," Rick sighed, tears coming again. "I promise." 

"Thanks for calling me Kitty," she whispered.

"That was dad's nickname for you, wasn't it?"

"Yes." But I'd like it if you'd call me it now."

"I promise." She smiled and leaned against him. And they walked back to the house, supporting each other as they went, leaving the bad memories behind.







Friday, 1 November 2013

Snippets For October.

I think ya'll know what this means, so here is the link to Katie's blog, and here I go! Like usual, not all of these are from October. But most of them are.




It was the same every day. Every day at 3:45, as Mally walked home from school, she saw him sitting there, all alone, on the bench along the side of the street. Sometimes he fed the birds, but most pf the time was just sitting there, watching the cars, trucks and people go by. He never had a newspaper, or a book. He just sat.

And Mally, naturally curious as a girl of eleven, couldn’t help but wonder. Wonder who he was, and where he lived. Wonder why he always sat there on that bench at the exact same time every day. Wonder who he seemed to be looking for, as his eyes wandered from face to face. He never seemed to notice her as she hurried by, for she was usually in too much of a rush to slow down. ~ A Single Friend; My World.


He grasps my hands. “I know you’ll do fine, son. Your mother and I will be here, waiting for you when you get back.”
I nod, and accept the hug that Laura has been waiting to give me. My little sister looks up at me proudly. “Go find something that will rock the world, Robbie,” she whispers, her eyes bright with tears.
I smile and tug gently on her hair, like I used to do when we were kids. “Hey, I’m twenty-four, too big to be called Robbie.”
She shakes her head, still smiling. “You’ll always be Robbie to me. I love you. Be safe.”

“I will.” I kiss her forehead and step away. “I have to go now.” I climb into my truck and slam the door. Looking back, I see them standing there on the porch, looking very small and alone. I raise my hand in farewell and rattle off down the road as quickly as I can, not wanting them to see my tears. ~Not Telling What This is From-- It also Doesn't have a Name.


She turned to Jacques. “Can I trust you? Because I have a secret I want to tell you.”
Jacques froze, his heartbeat suddenly roaring loudly in his ears. His tongue was on the verge of saying yes, but he caught himself. Trust him? Could she trust him? After all the lying he had done, the trickery? What would she think if she knew that he didn’t work for a newspaper, but was a private agent for the police? Would she still want to trust him?
He bit his lip. “I-- I would hope you can trust me,” he said softly. ~ A Matter of Trust.


Rita felt heat creeping up towards her face. “My life was nothing like that!” she spat! “And people had no right to talk about me like that! They’re all a bunch of liars! I am a lot nicer than that, and everyone knows it!”
“Oh, get off your high horse, Rita Sanski! Stop talking about yourself all the time and start thinking about others! Are you calling your brother a liar?”
Rita, about to make an angry interruption, froze in an instant and stared at Arthur. “My-- my brother?” She let her hand, raised to shake a fist, drop to her side with a thump. “What do you know about my brother?” The Lost World.


“I want to talk to you.”
“Well I don’t.” She closed her eyes again.
“Annie.” His voice was clipped, and sharp at the edges as he gently reached up and held her shoulders. “Annie, open your eyes and look at me.”
It was a command this time and Annie, after a brief struggle within herself, opened her eyes obediently. “Yes, Jacob?”
“Listen to me closely, Annieo. No, I want you to really listen, not pretend to.” Jacob crossed his arms and regarded her closely. “There, that’s better. Now, I know this is hard for you--”
“What’s hard for me?” Annie asked, feigning confusion.
Jacob’s eyes hardened and he gripped her shoulders harder. “None of that, Annie. There isn't time. I know that you know perfectly well what I’m talking about.”
Annie’s shoulders slumped a little and she gave a tiny, almost imperceptible sigh. “Yes,” she admitted, “I do know what you’re talking about.” ~ Pearl Harbor Story.