I wrote this as the opening to what I was going to have as a collection of short stories that became a novel. I don’t feel like this fits as an introduction to a novel and I don’t think I’m going to use it anymore. So, I thought I would share it!
These are stories about growing up, about friendship and loss, about hopeful futures, and about healing and moving forward. These stories are for you. I will introduce the characters and tell you their stories, but their lessons will be yours. I can’t make you see them. I can’t paint them on a billboard so that they are obvious. No. I will make you work for them and then, when they are apparent to you, you will take them with you for a lifetime, and then perhaps the lifetimes of your children. I don’t presume to insist these are important lessons to learn. These are just lessons that, having learned them, may somehow, someday, make your life a little bit easier. Someday, a lesson learned here will bury itself into your thoughts and it will lessen the pain. I have felt the pain so you will not have to. This is my sincerest hope.
So, what do you think?
My tumblr and WordPress are all aflutter with the upcoming annual writing event: NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month. You write a 50,000 word novel during the month of November, click the link if you want more information (or to sign up!). However, I will not be joining you.
I did the 3-Day Novel contest so perhaps you’re surprised I wouldn’t do NaNoWriMo. I have my reasons:
- I haven’t touched my 3-Day Novel yet. It’s been sitting there since Labour Day weekend, lonely and scared, and not touched. I’ve had every intention of revising, rewriting, and fluffing it out into something that may resemble a novel. My intentions have not become reality, unfortunately.
- I’m juggling too many writing projects as it is. I have several stories going on right now and none of them are getting done. This is eternally frustrating as it is because I want to submit some work to be published, but I can’t finish them!
- I haven’t submitted/published since the summer. I really miss submitting my work and the anticipation of the letter, hopefully an acceptance but inevitably a rejection. I still miss it. I usually like to submit at least once a month but I’ve been behind on that.
- I don’t have an idea. I have no idea what I would write for NaNoWriMo. I don’t have an idea that I could easily transform or plot out into a novel. I have one idea, but it’s historical fiction like I did for my 3-Day Novel. I had to do so much research for that, and it was WWII which I actually know a lot about. This other one is French Revolution. I’d need to do a lot of reading.
- NaNoWriMo is too long. I could commit to one weekend of intense writing (and as some of you remember, I gave up at least once) but a month is too long. I didn’t meet the “estimated” word count for 3-Day novel but they didn’t care much. NaNoWriMo cares.
So there you are, lovelies: All my reasons for not doing NaNoWriMo.
What do you think? Are you doing NaNoWriMo? Are you abstaining? Let me know in the comments!
I could feel the wind in my hair as I stood on the railing of the bridge. There were passers-by, I could see them move from the side of the right eye and then to the side of my left. I guess they didn’t notice the girl standing on the side of the bridge, one foot already off the side, ready to make the icy waters her frozen grave. Maybe this was an everyday thing; women too cowardly to deal with life the hard way. I stood on the railing for a long time. I don’t know what I was waiting for. Perhaps that film of your life that’s supposed to flash before your eyes just as you are to meet your demise. I pondered this thought until I felt a strong arm around my waist tackling me to the side walk.
“Don’t be an idiot,” were his only words to me as my head and tailbone screamed at my brain for attention at the same time. He walked off. I rubbed my throbbing head while I lay on the sidewalk for a while. I heard a dollar coin flung in my general direction. I got up off the sidewalk, brushed myself off, and took my hard-earned dollar but I didn’t climb back up onto the railing.
When he kissed her
He tasted all of her mistakes
He tasted the source of her destruction
But he said she tasted like coffee
And kissed her again
He drew constellations on her cheeks
Joining her imperfections
To make perfect geometric patterns
With her eyes as Orion’s belt
Her mouth the North Star
He used it to steer him home
She was built like a hand grenade
He handled her softly, deliberately
He tried not to hurt himself, but he did
Still, he saved her from herself
He was built like an oak tree on a summer day
She handled him coarsely, too hard
She tried not to hurt herself, but she did
Still, somehow, she made him happy
She traced his lips with her fingertips
Making his simple perfection
Imperfect in the light
His eyes were distant planets
His lips magnetic North
She wanted them to guide her home
When she kissed him
She tasted all the sweet things
She tasted the place she belonged
But she told him he tasted like her downfall
And kissed him again