Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Birth of a Novel Week 2

Here's my weekly report on my Nano progress.

I started well and had close to 6000 words by the end of the second day. And then things slowed. I puttered and did some research. I sat. I typed. I begged my kids to go away and for goodness sakes, please give me ten minutes of quiet.

I did that last one every five minutes of the last week.

There were a few days I didn't write anything and I started to worry. But the story is in my head. It's still buzzing around in that shiny, happy new idea kind of way. Which is funny since I first dreamed up this idea in June of 2010. Yep. I found the original notebook where I wrote down the dream. The book is only loosely based on that dream, but it's been really fun so far.

Still to be decided:
Am I writing this in first person POV or third person? I've tried both, but can't decide which one I like the best.

I cut almost 300 words on day 3. I know! Don't stone me. Remember, my goal is to get a decent rough draft down this month. The 50K word count is just the Nano requirement.

Surprise of the week?
Ryanne is often mad at Carter. But every time he says "Ma Cherie" she forgets why. Who knew? It doesn't sound all that smexy when I say it.

Current word count as of Monday night:
10,554 in 7 days! I need to hit 13,333 by tonight to stay "on track". Totally doable. Today they are going on a hot air balloon ride over Napa Valley.

Snippet (this is turning out to be much more of a YA romance than I had planned):

Carter reached for my hand and the warmth flowed into me. “Ryanne, I promised things were going to be better for you. I meant that.”

I gasped and returned my gaze to his face. He looked so intent. His mouth soft, his eyes such deep pools that they beckoned to me. Little gold flecks of light swam in the chocolate warmth. Something in me yearned to be closer to this man, but I didn’t know anything about him.

Swallowing hard, I whispered, “What are you talking about?”

Emotions flicked across his face and then his shoulders slumped. “You don’t remember do you?”

“No. Why can’t I remember the last two days?”

Carter looked up at the sky and sighed. “This isn’t a street conversation. Let’s go back in. Now I understand the look Heather gave me.”

He dropped my hand and stalked up the steps. He paused at the door and waited for me to enter first. I sat on the couch and he paced. I waited, but each time he passed, each moment that filled with silence, a knot inside clenched tighter.

“Sit down.” The command rushed out and we both jumped. “Sorry, you’re making me nervous.”

“No, I should apologize, Ma Cherie. Palen said you might block it out, but we had to take the chance.” He continued to pace.

“You’re not making any sense. And please sit down.” I twisted my hands in my lap.

He sat and stared at my hands a moment before taking them in his. “Where to begin?”

“How about when we left the apartment complex? Heather said I passed out, but I don’t even remember that.”

“It’s more complicated than that, but I guess it’s as good a place to start as any.” He paused to collect his thoughts, but his fingers absentmindedly drew patterns on my palm.

Circles, lots of circles. My body flushed with heat as the touch sent tingles up my arms. My brain told me to pull my hands free, but my hands wouldn’t obey. They had never been touched in such a way before, and they rebelled against my better judgment.

“No, we need to go back to when we met, at the wedding. Do you remember what you felt? What was it that compelled you to enter the garden?”

“I can’t think while you’re doing that.” I nodded toward our hands and tried to breathe normally. What in the world had come over me?

He blushed and dropped my hands. “Sorry, Ma Cherie.”

I took a deep breath. “It’s like I told you at the apartment. It was like being pulled somewhere.”

“Yes, but what did it feel like.” He leaned closer and his eyes held all of my attention.

“A restless need to wander. And then once I found the garden, it was,” I paused and looked away. “It was like a yearning. I needed to be somewhere and it was like my body knew I was close. The restlessness disappeared and it was replaced with need. Desire. Urgency.”

His hands were on my arms. Warm. Gentle. “And when did that feeling leave?”

When I found you.

I couldn’t look at him. Something blurred my vision and I realized I was crying. His hands swept up my arms and pulled me close. My face rested just below his chin, snuggled into his chest. That smell of reeds by the river washed over me. Calmed me.

“What’s wrong with me?”

“Shhh. It’s just sensory overload. Palen said that when you returned,” he paused, choosing his words carefully, “home, you might block out the last two days.”


“Because you don’t believe they really happened. Ryanne, I promise you this much. It was real. Believe in it. Let the memories come back.”

My pulse surged at the soft huskiness in his voice, but my head throbbed. The hairs at the nape of my neck stood on end and I saw flashes of light and those unimaginably bright colors again. I pushed myself away from him and erased the thoughts with a shake of my head.

“Carter, you’re talking nonsense.” I pressed my fingertips to my temple.

“I’m sorry. You need more time.” That look of sadness flickered again, but he hid it quickly. “Let me take you to lunch tomorrow.”

My mind backpedaled as fast as my body tried to lean toward him. I was drawn to him, but I knew this relationship, whatever it was, could never work. “Carter, we grew up in two different worlds. There are some things that just can’t work out. Do you know what I mean?”

He laughed and stood up. “Ma Cherie, you are right. Two different worlds entirely. However, bridges connect differences all the time. Let’s build a bridge and see where it take us.” He kissed the top of my head and walked to the door. “I’ll pick you up at noon. Heather and Scott are invited too.”

He was gone before I realized he never told me where I had been for the last two days.