A short glimpse


Hey everybody, I’ve been working on this short story for the past few days. (Still a WIP,) but I thought that I might actually try submitting. There’s no title to this piece but I thought I’d give you a peek. I hope you find it interesting.

 

The Autumn air, (still feeling like a warm summer day) whooshed past her face as she pumped her legs moving upward on the swing. There’s was something so peaceful about being on the swings, they could calm her thoughts even on her worst day. Today had been terrible, for the horrid teacher that she had suffered through last year, had followed her to eighth grade English. Ms. Nielson had picked up right where she had left off from the previous year, with the exception of changing curriculum. Instead of studying authors like Louis Sacher, and Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn. They were now digging into memoirs, and History, like the Holocaust and reading The Diary of Anne Frank. How she longed for next year when they would be introduced to Shakespeare, or more accurately, Romeo & Juliet. Nielson had picked up right where she had left off, her voice ringing with clear fury, and her frustration showing even more easily in her old age. Why they don’t just let the old bat go; but then the word she despised popped into her head, tenure. For the next few years Nielson would have a permanent residence in the English department of Prescott Junior High, continuing to torture both students and staff with her nasty attitude. Just this year, just get through this year and you’ll never have to tolerate the old bitch again. Nielson might have been granted to torture the lower classmen but the upperclassmen got teachers like Parker, Long, and Kelly, all who were as even tempered as possible and young.

She glimpsed up at the blue mountain backdrop, (a gorgeously, magnificent sight that only The Rockies could provide.) She drifted willingly and happily. She could smell the rich mountain air, and see the Rockies as they were meant to be seen; up close and surrounding her in every direction. She could see the trail, unchanged, the Columbines blooming along it’s edges, as if they were guiding her up the trail. A light breeze brushed against her and pine trees provided shade from the sun overhead. If only she could stay in this memory, but at the very least the memory had served its purpose. To wash away what had clung to her conscious mind, since the guidance counselor had presented her with her class schedule. Now she could go home, now she could stand to be around her parents and deal with whatever might transpire.

“Roxy, Hey girl.”

Roxy broke her stare from the distant blue mountains and looked down the park’s fence alleyway, where Crystal emerged from, smiling broadly.

“Hey Crystal,” Roxy greeted, but showed no signs of slowing down, as her legs took in another pump of the air.

“You know something, every time I come to the park you’re always on the swings.”

“I like to lose myself on them,” she said flatly.

“Me too,” said Crystal, as she mounted the other available swing, next to Roxy.

Roxy felt a wave of annoyance and displeasure wash over her.

“So how’d your first day back go?” Crystal asked then added, “Mine was long and boring.”

“It was all right,” she said, not caring enough to mention her dislike to find out that she had Nielson for another year.

“I’ve got homework already, Nielson,” Crystal continued.

Oh thanks for reminding me, homework on the first day, what kind of teacher gives a homework assignment on the first day back. At least it’s easy. Roxy thought as Crystal’s continued yammering began to sound like static from a radio.

A few minutes later Crystal dismounted from the swing set only to head over to the jungle gym to climb on the monkey bars, still yammering about subjects such as school friends, and her folks. At least that’s what Roxy assumed. Every once in a while when she would tune Crystal back in. At which point Roxy would say “Yeah, that’s ridiculous, or parents are weird.”

It had been shortly after Crystal had dismounted from the swings that Roxy first noticed her. She recognized her instantly. It was that curly haired new girl, she’d seen her around the neighborhood a few weeks before school began, and she seemed different, compared the other girls in the neighborhood; she kept to herself, and seemed shy. But there was something else about this girl that had nothing to do with the vibes she put off, no it was something unrecognizable to Roxy. It almost felt like a question with the answer visible, but still far too blurred to properly see it. So she knew the thing was there and yet, blank.

I dream of fun in the sun


Without a shred of doubt I’ve got a lot to be thankful for this year. The book, the house, but above all else at the moment, I’m thankful for the backyard, and the above ground pool.

Over this past week I’ve been busy assembling a gazebo, patio furniture, and rolling out the artificial grass carpet. Yes sir, this year there’s going to be plenty of activities this summer. And that’s where I find my mind wandering off to, the pool, cookouts, parties; I know it’s going to be a fun summer. (Which is the first time that I’ve actually been able to say that, instead of wishing or hoping for it.)

However with all of this going on, I find myself on a slippery slope writing wise. Tonight, for the first time in a little over a week; I’ve actually forced myself to sit at my desk and work on the book, (which I’m still a little stuck on,but getting better in the results department.) I think I really need to get my ass back into the swing of a scheduled routine; instead of writing when I’m feeling a little less nervous/blocked. Once again I’m wishing that I had the will power and the determination of Mr Stephen King. The man writes everyday and I want to get myself into that same grove, if only just to get in the necessary practice time so that I can better my literary craft. But… I can say one thing that I’m doing and that’s reading, I’ve got this portion of practice down. Now to get a better grasp on the writing portion.

Goal set, and unlike my New years resolutions, this I plan on sticking to and see it through, like a weight loss program.

Break rules and be inspired


I wanted to write a post about something that I felt inspired by; usually that has to do with something about the craft of writing. As habit would prove, I’ve dug up a YouTube video revolving around a TIME interview that fit the bill.

I’ve been attempting to broaden my horizons, both as an author and as a reader, by digging into books, and authors that ordinarily wouldn’t be my cup of tea. Most recently I’ve sank my teeth into the Twilight saga. Thus far, I have only downed the first book, which I am happy to discover turned out to be better than the movie series, (which was partially to blame for my skepticism towards the book series.) But if I paid more attention to film adaptations than the books, I’d be missing out on some true learning experiences.

When I find an author that intrigues my interest, I generally like to hear their stories on their the literary craft. How writing inspires them? What interested them in writing the kinds of stories that they write? Etcetera. Well, what else can I say except, break the rules, and let your imagination run wild. Seem a bit odd? The video below shall help.

 

Blank


Fill in the blank sheet of paper, or fill the blank page of a Word Doc. Either task can terrify even the most skilled writer. But what’s even more terrifying than seeing a blank page? Seeing a blank page remain empty, because the writer behind the pen or keyboard may be uncertain. Uncertain of their direction, of the piece once the work has commenced, and even uncertain when the story is laid out in front of him/her, like a road map.

There are a lot of uncertainties when it comes to the entire writing process, the one reliable tool that we do have to our advantage is our imagination. Which is stronger than those irrational fears that we come face to face with on a daily basis. Fear not the blank page, fear not the writer’s block, but fear the lack of imagination; for it’s when that wonderful gift is no longer present, that we’ll have plenty of reason to worry when the blank page is presented.

Not entirely sure


I’ve been stuck on this scene for what feels like a month, except it’s probably been more along the lines of three weeks. Today however, I forced myself to sit-down to attempt to, at least figure out where the damn thing’s headed, and – well I can at least say it has the potential to go in a direction now. Though I’m still unsure of the direction it’s heading in.

I’m not entirely sure why, but I thought I’d let you guys take a look at the scene, perhaps to show that Jenny is actually a WIP, and not just all kinds of talk. Either way here ya go…

 

Once the picture below was fully developed she realized that this place was somewhere she had never before ventured, gooseflesh appeared on her forearms, she noted the strangeness of the gooseflesh, for she was feeling the complete opposite of cold, in fact she could feel the sunlight burning at her face as if she were walking in a desert. But the location was the furthest thing from desert.

Her feet landed on steady, stable, ground, but what she saw in front of her looked the furthest from stability. A New England style dwelling that looked as if it had been built during Lincoln’s era, stood before her. The house looked as though it had weathered through one too many natural disaster; in fact, how the thing seemed to still be standing fascinated Jenny. The front porch looked like it been roughed up by a tornado passing through. The porch swayed to the left and the beams that were barely holding the porch up, were deeply cracked, and they stretched from the middle of the beam to the porch’s roof. There were four windows above the decrepit porch, two on the left and two on the right. The windows look like they’d suffered the same fate as the porch, for each of them looked to have snarled webs of cracks which stretched from top to bottom. In the center of the house, between the two sets of windows, there was, no surprise to her, a small hole exposed. Revealing an interior wall of the house, that actually looked to be in tract. She had half expected at the very least to see more deep cracks, or possibly even another hole. Stretching so deep into the interior, that all that could have been seen was the dark, vastness, of the hole. But there was something else about the building, the house didn’t look sad, like most older houses (which had seen their best days thirty something years ago.) This house looked – proud. The moment that thought, ran across her mind she realized how ridiculous it sounded, but it was believably true. The house looked proud and creepy, almost as if, it knew things. Now this thought sounded even worse than the previous one, but …

She looked up again, at the decrepit house with the swaying porch, and at the cracked windows. The house was proud, in a creepily, evil sort of manner. Why it even – it has the face to prove it. The swaying porch is the thing’s mouth, the cracked windows its eyes, and the strange hole in-between the two sets of windows could be considered its nose.

Jenny felt a sudden tingle of a shiver run up her spine, followed by the appearance of gooseflesh on her forehead. Then a burning sensation in her ears as a whisper barely audible at first, rang into the sharp, clarity, of an older lady’s voice. “Come in Jenny, come in and see the secrets I’ve held. Come see how I’m still standing. I know you’re curious, you’re not the first. Come in, the fireplace is roaring, and my couches are quite comfortable. So why don’t you take a load off, and rest your weary head.”

 

Stephen King’s Christine


Just Another Lovers’ Triangle, Right?

It was love at first sight. From the moment seventeen-year-old Arnie Cunningham saw Christine, he knew he would do anything to possess her.

Arnie’s best friend, Dennis, distrusts her—immediately.

Arnie’s teen-queen girlfriend, Leigh, fears her the moment she senses her power.

Arnie’s parents, teachers, and enemies soon learn what happens when you cross her.

Because Christine is no lady. She is Stephen King’s ultimate, blackly evil vehicle of terror…

 

There’s nothing quite as entertaining as the story of a love triangle, except when Stephen King spins a yarn on the subject.

The first thing that drew me in about Christine was the fact that it wasn’t your typical love triangle, which is usually formed between three people. In this case we have two people and a Plymouth Fury.

One of the creepy instances that seemed to become the horrifying theme of this book, was how possessive the Plymouth was of Arnie, and how the car was always able to suck him back into her evil whirlwind, throughout the book. It resembled that old, yet so true saying ‘love is blind.’

I also enjoyed the head hopping POV in this story between some of the main characters. It gave a fresh look into the lives of Arnie’s best friend Dennis, Arnie’s girlfriend Leigh, his folks, as well as his enemies. All the while showing Christine in several different lights, and proving that it is next to impossible to come between a guy and his car.

The book will leave you shaken and will deliver a horror story in a classic Stephen King manner. You’ll also never think of a love triangle in the same way again.

Bear in mind that I am new to Stephen King and that there are other titles that one might think of as a Stephen King classic read, but I would say that this story is up there with Carrie and Misery. If you have yet to read Christine, or you might just be looking for a good Stephen King horror read, I would recommend picking up Christine.

Read aloud, and your book will thank you


For aspiring authors, there’s loads to be nervous about as we chisel away at, what we hope will become a masterpiece loved by all. However, one of the biggest worries at least for me is, does what I’m writing sound like an actual story? Or is it bullshit that will never find it’s way to bookshelves?

Those questions pop up more than I care to admit. I pretty much think of them as reoccurring nightmares, that haunt my subconscious on a nightly basis.

Tonight however, I think that I may have stumbled on a tool that is essential to every  writer’s toolbox. At the bottom, hidden, or so I thought, of my little toolbox I found an all important tool. An author’s voice – my voice, a voice that I can hear coming through, with perfect clarity in every sentence.

It was crazy, it was wonderful, it’s progress made, or rather progress in the making.  How did I find this tool? you’re probably wondering. Oddly enough it was by reading a working chapter in progress, aloud. Something I’ve been unable/unwilling to try, for fear that the writing itself would be or sound god awful. It didn’t and for the first time I could hear the author’s voice coming through within the words.

If you’re an aspiring author I would recommend giving this exercise a go, especially if you’re unsure of the writing you’re producing. Saying sentences, dialogue, phrases, and paragraphs out loud can help. If your ears don’t like the sound of a sentence or a piece of dialogue, then you can edit the piece until it becomes music to your ears.

I should kick myself for not doing this sooner, but at least now I know how much this can aid me, as I continue on with Jenny Mac.