• Empty Bed
    Cut But Still Good,  Imagined Snippets,  Random Ramblings,  Story Excerpts

    Death is always an empty bed

    I didn’t get any work on my novel done this weekend. I won’t be working on in next weekend while I’m in Fresno for Christmas so I’ll need to focus on it after work this week to make sure my progress doesn’t stagnate.

    This will be a super short blurb this week. It’s something that sort of made it into the novel:

    <Death is always an empty bed.>

  • Sleeping
    Imagined Snippets,  Random Ramblings

    Worrying in the privacy of my own thoughts

    Last night was our company Christmas party. I thought I’d be able to post after I got home but it went a lot later than I expected and I was too exhausted. It’s the only day I’ve missed posting since I started up again on August 27, so I think I’m doing really well overall.

    I ended up getting very little sleep last night so I’m pretty braindead at the moment. I’m going to make this related to my last post. This was another idea for the same part of the book. This one didn’t make it into the novel either:

    Carson sleeps most of the three days following his arrival. I leave him in peace to sort through the last six months, worrying in the privacy of my own thoughts.

    It amuses me that Carson’s behavior in the two approaches is the exact opposite.

    Also, that’s not a picture of Carson sleeping but it made me giggle so I went with it.

  • Not Sleeping
    Imagined Snippets,  Random Ramblings

    I’ve never had cause to wonder

    I have so much that I’ve written for this novel and a lot of it isn’t even in the novel. Like this paragraph:

    He’s not sleeping. I thought he was doing little else but I was wrong. He’s not sleeping at all. How long can a person go without sleep? I’ve never had cause to wonder. Now I Google it, of all things. Apparently, about 11 days. I’m surprised it’s so many. Though of course a person’s focus and concentration worsen as time progresses. Anxiety likely increases as well. Carson’s only at three days so I suppose I don’t need to worry too much about his physical health yet. I suppose.

  • Wordless
    Story Excerpts

    She’s taken them from me

    Tangentially related to yesterday’s lack of my own words (on a side note, so many of my thoughts are tangents):

    Goosebumps cover my arms. My lips part around breath that doesn’t form words. She’s taken them from me, replaced them with ice. There’s a reason the Lyril used harsh memories as punishments for relatively harmless crimes. There’s a reason we do the same. Because each of our citizens is a grenade, or at least has the potential to be.

  • Certain Dark Things
    Random Ramblings

    Certain dark things

    Tonight I’m feeling more thoughtful than I am like stringing words together.  So I’m going to leave you with someone else’s words, ones I think my character Carson would like.

    My favorite parts are in bold.

    I do not love you as if you were salt-rose, or topaz,
    or the arrow of carnations the fire shoots off.
    I love you as certain dark things are to be loved,
    in secret, between the shadow and the soul.

    I love you as the plant that never blooms
    but carries in itself the light of hidden flowers;
    thanks to your love a certain solid fragrance,
    risen from the earth, lives darkly in my body.

    I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where.
    I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride;
    so I love you because I know no other way

    than this: where I does not exist, nor you,
    so close that your hand on my chest is my hand,
    so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep.

    – Pablo Neruda, Sonnet XVII, translated from the original Spanish (not by me!).

  • War Purring Cat
    Cut But Still Good,  Story Excerpts

    Plenty of time for you to talk to Davonte

    I have a warm purring cat in my lap. Life is good.

    I think I’m going to nix the gender neutral pronouns in my novel. Not enough characters use them. As an experiment, I updated a section in Chapter 2 to include the doctor using the gender neutral pronouns. I don’t think it adds enough to the story to be worth the confusion:

    Marconi straightens and sees me. <Ah. There you are. How are you feeling?>

    <Perfectly well, thank you. Your handiwork?>

    <Yes. Davonte brought you both straight to me.>

    <How’s Carson?>

    <Better. Yils condition was dire at first. Yi’s likely gifted, mindcraft wise. Allucinari is worse the stronger you are. I’m keeping yil sedated until the drug leaves yils system. It’s kinder this way.>

    I’m surprised. <I thought you’d be able to give him the cure.>

    <Cure is not quite the right term. It prevents someone from being susceptible to the drug in the future but doesn’t do anything to alleviate the symptoms of someone who is already infected.>

    <So it won’t work on him at all?>

    She hesitates. <I will give yil the inoculation as soon as the drug clears yils system and it will prevent yil from being susceptible to further harm should yi ever be dosed with allucinari again.> 

    Good. <Will there be any permanent damage?>

    Another hesitation. <No.>

    Walking the rest of the way inside, I come to stand beside Carson. His hair is a mess of floppy curls. I must not have noticed it

  • Wide Open Spaces
    Imagined Snippets

    Wide open spaces

    In my various novel meanderings of the weekend, I came across an important interlude that’s never made it into the novel. It’s important backstory so I’d like to work it in somehow.

    <It’s not that simple. The Lyril developed telepathy naturally and relatively quickly. But not shielding. Their world is several times bigger than Earth, with wide open spaces.>

    <I understand the words you’re saying…>

    <By the time different tribes were coming into conflict, they could speak silently and feel what other people felt. But they didn’t know how to shield yet. You can’t believe someone isn’t as much a person as you are when they feel things the same way you do.>

    <Yeah. You have a point.>

    Carson looks surprised.

    <But what does it change? We can’t change how humans evolved.>

    <But we can keep it in mind.>

  • First Sentences,  Random Ramblings

    I follow her through history

    In reference to yesterday’s post, sometimes days in general don’t go the way you plan (though of course it’s fun to point at Mondays).  I’ve done a lot of thinking about my novel today, and some brainstorming, but no actual outlining. I do have – as a general idea – a fix for the issue in question, but there are all the scene-by-scene details to figure out. Thirty three scenes, to be exact.

    I got another idea for a short story this week. When I’m done with this novel I’m going to have so many things to choose from for my next project. Here’s my first attempt at a First Sentence for this potential future short story:

    I follow her through history before I follow her through the night. It’s harder than it normally is. She treads more lightly than most of her kind. From what I can determine, she’s between 125 and 150 years old and hasn’t often strayed out of the United States. She’s never joined a pack and is most reliably found in the journals of witch covens.

    I probably never would have discovered her if she hadn’t spent the last twenty years living in one city – the same city I’ve called home for the better part of a decade. She’s averaging one disappearance per month. It’s an unexpectedly low body count but I still have to stop her, and to do that, I need to learn everything I can about her habits. That’s why

  • Arrested
    First Sentences,  Random Ramblings

    Sometimes Mondays don’t go the way you plan

    I’m determined to figure out how to fix the trickiest issue left in my novel this weekend. Not necessarily to actually get done the fixing, but to outline exactly what I will be doing when I embark on my next (and last) set of (somewhat) significant changes.

    There will be at least two outlines to complete when it comes to figuring out how to fix this issue – an outline of how things would play out if I fixed it using option 1 and an outline of how things would play out if I fixed it using option 2. Neither option is unflawed but the process of outlining will help me think of new ideas that I will in turn outline the ramifications of.

    I’ve done a lot of reviewing of all my novel-related material recently. This is how an idea for a short story set in the same universe presented itself to me on 10/26/2017:

    When the police come to arrest me, I expect them. I didn’t set out to break international telepathy law, but sometimes Mondays don’t go the way you plan.

  • Weapons Forged by Our Will
    First Sentences,  Random Ramblings

    Like people believe in pain

    Relatively speaking, I don’t have a lot left to fix in my novel. It’ll still take a chunk of time and work but the bulk of the labor is done.

    I think just one of the items is going to be tricky, and I’m going to have to do a lot of brainstorming to figure out the best way to handle it. All the options I’ve considered so far don’t entirely fit; it’ll be fun to find one that does.

    This is a First Sentence from 10/22/2017:

    Anything can be a weapon if you believe it is. Not like people believe in god. Like people believe in pain. If you know the object leaving your hand will explode on impact, it will, even if it’s only a rock. It’s the one advantage we have, things that aren’t all that dangerous on their own become weapons forged by our will.