Week 34 2016 – Distractions

I do not know about other writers, but for me, the most difficult thing about writing a new book is the distractions of life, having to eat, drink, sleep, work, socialize. If only I could manage without all those things hindering my progress, I might already have a functional draft. I tried to set my minions to taking care of some of these menial life tasks, but they only took my coffee cup hostage. So I’ll be spending another week in obscurity.



Week 33 2016 – Turtle

BoxTurtleI am in full writing mode these days so it is hard to break for these posts. I am absorbed in my new book so much that I must set two alarms to remind me when it is a weekday and when I must attend my day job. My pug is forced to listen to me tell her the tales I am recording. I have fallen so deeply into my new book that I am scarcely aware of the world around me, so much so that this week when walking Frankie, we were nearly devoured by a giant turtle.

Yes, I know the turtle would not really eat us, but it was huge and what the hell was it doing there on our path? The place I walk Frankie at twilight runs along a ridge, quite a steep climb up from a creek. I suppose that is where the turtle came from. It was just sitting there right on the path making its slow trudge to wherever, mouth open probably more to breathe than to take a bite out of my pug.

IMG_0440We scurried away from the creature, all the while my childhood yelled at me. Had a been a kid, I would have picked up the beast and carried it home with me, created a little sanctuary for it to the chagrin of my mother who at times thought I was playing the part of Noah and preparing for the next flood. Once I had a been a true child of nature. Now I am a slave to mortality, a freak of what time has made me.

Frankie and I returned home from our walk, me feeling that awful twinge that sometimes haunts me. Time is passing. It matters. I am no immortal. Frankie curled up in her customary place, her bed by my writing desk and dreamed as I wrote. The next night the turtle was gone.

Reading, Writing

Week 32 2016 Love and Rubbish on the High Seas

I am the least romantic person on the planet. My boys complain at my lack of finesse while simultaneously claiming romance is for books and not the lives of wild and free adventurers like themselves. 

“We’re pirates!” They say. “We got us some passion, and this tripe is how you record it?”

First, they are young men with a boat. Not pirates. Well, not really. That will come in time. Maybe.

Part of my problem is that I get seasick,and we’ve been in choppy waters all week with a crew of fairly novice sailors. 

 I am green about the gills and so Emmett and Cappy’s seductions are of limited concern at the moment. And Emmett is not going for my girl, damn that boy. He’s going to ruin everything.  I wish Emmett’s twin sister, Lucie were here. She’d set him straight, but she’s clear on the other side of the world. And Kidd, he’s just laughing at both his friends. 

Emmett is so angry. He doesn’t say it, but he’s angry at his father. He isn’t thinking beyond his anger and those dang hormones. He’ll regret that in time, but talking to him is like talking to a wall. His father has loved one woman his whole life. That it wasn’t Emmett’s mother is sad, but should not have earned such wrath. Phineas Tunvel is a good man. I hope Emmett sees it one day and abandons this self-destructive path he’s on. That little vixen that tempts him so will be nothing but trouble. 

Ah well, I will sort it in the end, but I am considering reading a bit of romance to help me out. I probably have a fever. I never read romance. Suggestions? 

Books, Reading, Villains, Writing

Week 31 2016 -Madame Darke

SarielasCatDreadful tales are told about Madame Darke, ones designed to discourage people from seeking her out. Of course, like the many cautionary tales about using drugs, drinking too much, and promiscuous sex, few listen. After all, she has magic that will short-circuit many immediate problems.

So many little cures for little problems and all for small favors. Bring her tea, and that test you were certain to fail is passed although the knowledge is never yours. Bring her cake, and that acne marring your face is gone, and your complexion perfect. Confidence accompanies your next encounter with those you desire to desire you in return. Bring her a cat, and that little sore contracted in some lustful embrace disappears and so forth. There are no consequences for your failure to study, your vanity, or poor judgment, none that you can see as she gathers little bits of your soul, painlessly extracting them. Oh, if you need your enemy to disappear, the favor is bigger than a cat, but she can do that as well.

I spent most of this week in Madame Darke’s company, trying to understand her motives. The woman seemed so inclined to help for a rare jasmine tea. I suppose my coffee addiction is not so different than her tea obsession.  Her cottage is crawling with felines, but it is snakes that slither among her books. I wonder how it is all those snakes, so many of them, are not enough to warn her many visitors that perhaps the price to cure their little nagging complaints might be much higher than they imagine.

WickerWomanSnakeI needed to flee for myself. Snakes scare me more than my desire to see what books she keeps in her library. Young Husk Grayvesone felt differently, a lonely, fat boy whose love for books far outweighed his fear of serpents.

“Are they magic books?” Husk asked.

“All books are magic,” Madame Darke said.

I would have said the same to the boy, but snakes do not guard my library. It is open to all. Still, Husk acquired access to Madame Darke’s books without giving much away. Of course, he had not sought her out intentionally. His cruel classmates had driven him into the forest with their bullying, and he accepted the old wicker woman’s invitation into her little cottage out of despair and a need to hide away for a time.

Madame Darke sent him away with books in his arms, his promise to return them and to do favors for her from time to time. I do not think Madame Darke realizes that little black cat also left with Husk or that the one book she gave him to keep, one in which few pages had any content, was the most valuable thing in all of the world. Madame Darke never counts her cats and she sees little value in a blank page.

I wonder if the snakes ever eat the cats or the reverse. Have you seen a cat with a snake in its jaws? I believe I have, but it might have been my imagination. I have no wish to return to the cottage to find out. Husk, I fear, must return a time or two before the end.

I do worry what will become of it all. Madame Darke has a world to enslave using little but a slight of hand. A pimple hidden with illusion that given time, would have gone away on its own; a venereal disease taken from the body and encased in the soul that might have been vanquished with proper medicine for a fist of coin, a death in exchange for long life in Madame Darke’s service, riches that do nothing to obscure a fading ability to feel joy or see in the light. I do wonder. Madame Darke has so many in her service now. I pray Husk escapes her reach, but maybe, it is already too late. We shall see.