Tag Archives: first draft novels

The flu that killed my story. From Barf to Botox

Well it’s been two years and I fed that story to my flu and killed it. I never did pick it back up and I haven’t read it since. It’s sitting on a flash drive somewhere. I lost all faith in telling it. Went down that rabbit hole of self loathing and quit. But I didn’t quit writing. I got hooked on fanfic. First reading then trying my hand at writing it. And I’ll tell ya…it was great.  So much support. So many readers. So much feedback! It’s like nirvana for the soul to have excited readers. A decided difference when people usually cringe when/if I ask them to read my stuff. (Thanks Mom, j/k,  n/r) But I found myself looking for ways to pass my original fiction off as fan fiction. My stories became more of an ‘inspired by’ than true fanfic. But I loved the community so much I didn’t want to leave it. I used real actors and cast them in my own stories and posted them.  But eventually I got so far away from actual fan fiction that I didn’t post my last short story. Why? Because while I enjoyed playing in sandboxes that weren’t mine, I realized that I really love building my own and filling it with whatever I wanted. Maybe jello who knows? In any case,  the story was still around and I was still having fun with it so that last, short, pseudo fanfic grew. I decided it needed a subplot, then more characters a more villainy (is that a word?) villain etc… What I ended up with? Believe it or not a completed 70,000 word first draft.  No pressure. I started it with absolutely no expectations. I asked absolutely no one to read it. It was just for fun it just happened to kept increasing in scope. Perhaps that’s why I got to the end with it. No pressure. It was fun. No expectations. And written completely by the seat of my pants.  I did a dance and drank a lot of wine and patted myself on the back, woke up with a few bruises i have no idea how i got…and then dropped it like a bad date. That first draft was a lot of words barfed up and splattered across pages and pages. I wove in subplots and characters and just kept moving forward. Once i got to ‘the end’ I was so afraid to go back and re read it. I knew it had more holes than a slice of Swiss cheese and inconsistencies too numerous to count.  I was so afraid to look at it again that I started writing something else.  I learned how important it is to at least attempt to outline a large piece of work. Strictly pantsing a short story ain’t so hard but for a longer work ug! So it sat for months, lonely and afraid that it would be left in the dark forever just as so many of my other failed attempts. I ignored it. Ignored it’s sad sack eyes and mopey frowns as I worked on my next story following a semi structured outline that is helping the flow A LOT. Then I caught a cold.  For some reason (maybe I was delirious) I decided to pull up that barf splattered first draft. I was surprised. It wasn’t nearly as bad as I had thought. Sure it had problems but they could be worked out certainly. I spent that week on a complete read through and then created a bikini outline that I attempted to jam all that drafts bits and pieces into. I pushed,  it pulled, there were grunts and embarrassing moments where something was exposed that shouldn’t be. However, eventually it worked. Sort of. I found a magic wand that goes by the name of Scrivener. OK not a magic wand but a great writing tool, program whatever. I pulled the manuscript into it and broke it down into scenes. What magic! If you don’t have this program…get it! It’s an awesome way to organize your writing without reams and reams of printed pages, cut outs, sticky notes, pencil, pen, crayon scratches. It’s hard to explain but it helped me through another draft. Barf draft. Bikini draft. Now I’m on what? I know! The botox draft. The one where all the wrinkles get smoothed out. hehe. I’m not dreading it. I’m actually kind of excited. But just in case I have, printed it out in a different font, different size, to trick myself into thinking it’s someone else wrote it. It’s three inches thick and used almost an entire cartridge of black ink. Wish it luck.


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Contest entry

Well I’ve been doing my best to put off writing more of my novel. I’ve made a few more contest entries instead. It’s addicting. It’s lovely to have people read what you’ve written whether it receives good reviews or not simply because they are actually reading it! Euphoria….so all I have to post today is one of my entries. In this contest we had to begin the short story with the line “A kiss is a terrible thing to waste”, it’s a line from a Meatloaf song. I’ll let you know how it fares when the votes role in:)

A kiss is a terrible thing to waste. Katie reminded herself of this repeatedly as Martin sat close beside her on the park bench. It was a perfect summer day and his kiss was just waiting right there before her. It looked wonderful, warm, soft, waiting for her to wrap her luscious lips in it. What was she waiting for?

Katie closed her eyes, her mouth puckering slightly imagining the sweetness that hovered just above her lips. She imagined leaning in, the sliding and gliding heat along her tongue, the feeling of joy that would envelop her if she just had the nerve to reach out and take it for herself.

It would be wrong but the yearning caused her stomach to flutter nevertheless. She wanted it, needed it, how could something so good be so wrong?

You must not Katie told herself sternly. The self denial almost painful. This is not good for you, and it might not be as good as you think. It might even be slimy or gooey or even dirty, her nasty inner voice added to Katie’s growing irritation.

Then the little devil that was ever present in another part of her mind countered.’Oh darling but you must! Think of the feeling, think of the decadence that awaits you! Don’t you see his smiling face? He wants you to take it!’ That dark little voice always got her into so much trouble but wasn’t it always so much fun when she listened to it.

Oh how Katie wished she could hear only that demon inside her now. How she wished there were never any repercussions for doing what was wrong, bad, naughty what have you. Martin was all warm smiles as the summer breeze ruffled his hair and she began to waver.

She ran her hands down her thighs. Drying her damp palms and feeling her generous contours. How would Martin feel if she just reached over and took what he was so obviously offering? What if he really didn’t intend to give her the kiss at all? If he pulled back at the last minute she would be devastated.

Katie laughed a bit,arguing with herself, how ridiculous. But surely a wasted kiss is just as much a tragedy as one taken when one shouldn’t? Wasn’t something stolen so much sweeter anyway? Perhaps she wouldn’t allow him to pull away.

Her mouth was beginning to water. How long had she been waiting for this? A second, a minute? It felt as if it had been an hour. The battle within her raging on.

She had never been very particular about how she received her kisses. She would happily take them from a friend or receive them from her mother. She even gave them dark and sweet to other boys. She sighed, but this kiss was like none other she decided, an opportunity not to pass up.

If she took this kiss she and Martin would either laugh or cry. Someone would pay for this kiss one way or another. It was just too cruel that she couldn’t divine what the outcome would be in this instance. Katie wished for some kind of sign that would help her decide if she should take this chance.

Then it was gone. Her sweet kiss pulled away. All of the turmoil she had built up around his kiss and the moment had passed. She had stupidly missed her chance and the kiss would be wasted, thrown away.

Oh how stupid she had been. Katie relived the past few moments in her mind. She could still imagine the feeling of that sensuous kiss upon her mouth. Sucking it in and savoring the sweet slide.

“Oh Martin please, I’ve changed my mind,” she said quietly with a coaxing smile on her pretty face.

To her astonishment Martin chuckled and quickly offered her another kiss. Oh sweet lord she would not waste another moment. She wanted it and to hell if it was bad or not. If there were tears later she would deal with them.

Without another second’s hesitation Katie reached out and grabbed Martin’s sticky little toddler hand and brought it to her mouth. She sucked the sweet half melted chocolate treat from his heated little mit.

She savored the forbidden candy. Her thighs would pay for this later but she would not shed tears for something so divine.

Martin did not seem unhappy with her theft. He unwrapped another candy. He giggled and waved it in front of her face as if this was now a new game.

With a shrug of her shoulders she let the toddler pop another kiss into her mouth. This one hadn’t been held so long, she let the chocolate warm and melt in her own mouth. Swirled her tongue in the sweetness and swallowed.

She would not shed a tear for her thighs. The treat was too good and wasn’t a kiss a terrible thing to waste anyway?

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Chapter 12 (b)

Boy when I blocked out this story it looked like each block would be a chapter. I’m finding that the level of detail this story involves each block is adding up to about 3 chapters. In other words what I thought was going to be a 12 chapter novella is probably going to be more like 20. I thought I’d be done by now but it looks like I’m only 3/4 of the way through. Slugging along. Keep telling myself “KEEP WRITING” … ok ok you don’t have to yell hehehe.

It was midweek just before dusk. It was a chilly fall evening and the coming winter could be felt on the air. Vaughn was still upstairs and Sylvie had gone out shopping taking Sissy with her.  Glorianna was in the cozy parlor catching up on correspondence when a knock sounded at the front door. Glorianna pulled her shawl closer around her shoulders wondering who could be out on the chilly doorstep and felt glad that it wasn’t she.

A moment later Knox announced from the doorway. “An Inspector Levinson here to see you Madam.”

Glorianna felt sudden panic. What could the Inspector want? He couldn’t know that she was hiding Vaughn here they’d been very careful and her servants were loyal. If she turned him away now would he become suspicious if he didn’t have reason to be already?

“Show him in Knox, and please bring refreshments of the robust variety. I’m sure the Inspector must be chilled to the bone today.”

Glorianna congratulated herself on seeming unaffected upon receiving the Inspector.  He would not get the best of her this time she thought with a cat like smile. The smile was apt for this would surely be a cat and mouse interaction if she wasn’t mistaken and this time she was going to be the cat.

“Ah Mrs. Lockley, a pleasure to see you again. Thank you for seeing me.” He gave her a mocking bow with a twinkle in his eye that hinted at what they had shared on their previous visit.

“I’m sure the pleasure will be mine Inspector,” Glorianna responded impishly. If flirtation was what he’d come for she would serve it with abundance. There was no need to raise any questions as to why she was suddenly cold and uninterested.

Glorianna admitted it was no hardship to flirt with the Inspector. Tall and lean with an insouciant way of carrying himself that just begged for a lady to toy in return.

“Won’t you sit down inspector?” Glorianna gestured to a plush velvet chair. She moved to take the matching one flanking the fireplace.  The configuration made for a cozy chat.

Knox returned with a tea tray with a carefully placed decanter of brandy holding pride of place. He arranged cups and saucers as if for a ladies tea returned to his station outside the room. Little did Glorianna know but that Knox would have company during his vigil.

“A lady after my own heart,” The Inspector said with a quirk to his plush lips. “Mam it was my impression that we’d moved beyond formal address,” The inspector leaned back casually crossing his long legs at the ankles angling them closer to the fire. “In fact, “he continued folding his hands over his taught middle, “I believe we’d moved to such causal regard to be almost unseemly.”

He regarded her with the feline grace of a hunter. One that’s known the scent of his prey and knows which bait works best to his advantage. It made Glorianna feel distinctly warm. His barley veiled words brought to mind all the naughty things he’d done to her last they’d met.

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