Sunday, November 09, 2008


I have written a total of 33,359 words of fiction so far this month, so it surprises me that I have no scene or excerpt I want to post. I've finally come to it, about 1/2 of the way through my plot, I think. My main character has just broken out of prison in a matter best explained by allusion to the Count of Monte Cristo. It was helped by the fact that she can make herself invisible.

She did not begin to run until she felt the spring sunlight on her face, and smelled last night’s rain in the ground. And when she finally did, after months of a concrete cell with no contact with the outside world, she almost broke down and cried with joy. She ran, she slipped, she skidded, she fled and she flew through the foggy forest surrounding the prison, but even this forest which would have scared the bravest human was home to Nerissa Zephyr. She could taste the sunlight and the dew in the air, and she could sense how desperately they had missed her during her incarceration. She was free, again; free from her cell and more importantly free from the future depicted in the crystal ball. The world was hers, and the arms of Albion and Naid and Corundum stretched to welcome her back.

But nothing, no smell of rain or warmth of sun or feel of earth beneath her feet, nothing compared to the homecoming of finally, once more, after so very long, feeling the breeze against her skin. It enveloped her, caressed her, and she thought for the first time in a long, long time that this was what it meant to be a fairy, and especially, this was what it meant to be Nerissa Zephyr. Not beauty, not grace, not cleverness, not the magic she had used to make herself invisible. To be herself was to be one with the wind, to hear it whisper in her ear, play with her still dingy straw-colored hair, brush against her prison garments, warm her skin and her heart. She thought back to her lessons with Professor Johnson, and her sessions with James, and all the nights making up magic in her cold jail cell, and she frowned in concentration. If she could make herself invisible, then there was no limit to what she could do. She lifted her hands, and made herself lighter than a feather, and the breeze picked her up tenderly, carefully, like a child. And then she spread her arms wide, willing the wind to carry her home.

It did.

I think, to be honest, that the kind of writing I have been doing lately does not suit itself to the kind of writing I am comfortable posting on this blog. For the following reason. Most of the fiction I have posted on this blog are drabbles; very short, and hence I have had time to look over every word and carefully choose it as I go. While the longer (full short story) pieces I have posted have definitely improved by being looked at by Ayn, especially, even they were more ready to be looked over than my Nano piece. Nanowrimo is, if anything, the antithesis of how I write drabbles and short stories: in order to make it through the month, I can't edit as I go. I have to just write something and promise myself I'll look throug it and make it better later. That's what January and February are for. I've already told anyone who asks that they can read my novel, at the earliest, in March. (Apparently novel-writing science graduate students are rare enough that my friends are surprised and at least play lip service to wanting to read my work.) That's when it will finally be fit for other people to read. There might be some sections that need less editing than others, but all of it will need to be gone through with a fine-toothed comb before I even come close to posting it in total online.

And, with that, my nose goes back to the grindstone!

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