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Friday Snippets

Since I have blogger’s block–teehee–I’m going to post some short excerpts from three of my main works-in-progress. I hope you enjoy!

Keep your pen on the page,
Beth

Excerpt 1 (The Goblets Immortal) – 

“And yet here you are, in my parlor, no exits but the window and the door.” Tristram laughed. “Don’t think I didn’t notice you making escape plans. Just in case, of course.”

Aidan managed to crack a slight smile as his friend opened his billfold. “Of course.” The deed and money exchanged hands, and they shook on the deal.

“You won’t regret this.” It needed repeating, but it did no good.

Aidan regretted it already. But it was signed in his blood. No amount of regret could wash that magic away. He sucked on his hand, which still oozed, and reached for the inkwell. “You keep a lot of iron in here,” he noted, Dismissing his lifeblood from the well and getting to his feet.

Tristram laughed. “I’ll never get over how you do that.” He waved his hand with a flourish. “Just simply willing objects away. Wish I was so able.”

“No, you don’t,” Aidan said, clapping his friend on the shoulder. “Thank you, Tristram. This means a lot to me.”
Excerpt 2 (Doomsday) – 

He ran a block. He ran two. His lungs were punishing him, fit to burst as he panted. That was the first thing that convinced him that being free from the asylum wasn’t part of any hallucination. He was really pumping his legs, pushing himself to get away from that horrid place.

When he reached the bus stop, he was forced to pause to dry heave again, his muscles seizing. It was getting dark out, the sky promising rain. He laughed. A month ago, his biggest problem had been numbers and hand-washing and the meaninglessness of existence. Now he was running from a daydream–nightmare? Daymere?—waking nightmare. He was running from a waking nightmare, a product of his over-active imagination, and he had no power in his phone.

Ari swore. “This is just fabulous.” He wiped spit from his mouth and moved into the bus shelter, where a pair of tourists eyed him nervously.

 

Excerpt 3 (Untitled) – 

 

Merlyn bit his lower lip, and looked deep into my eyes. “I don’t want to frighten you.”

“Now, that is exactly how to frighten a girl, tell them you don’t want them to be frightened.” I studied him. He seemed sincerely upset over something. “Maybe you should just tell me what’s on your mind, and I can decide from there if I’m in any real danger.”

He turned that over in his mind for a minute, his gaze darting about the now-empty gym. A pained expression darkened his features and he shook his head. “Please, Kate. The dream was very clear that—”

I may have snorted. “You dreamt that something bad was going to happen to me?”

Merlyn nodded. “Yes.” He glared at me when I laughed. “Please, take this seriously. My dreams are never wrong.”

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Playing Favorites

So. I couldn’t think of anything to blog about today, so I decided that I’m going to play favorites…meaning, I’m going to list my top three of everything. Well, some things. Here goes!

TOP THREES

NOVELS: 1 – The Hobbit, 2 – Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, 3 – Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

PAINTINGS: 1 – The Storm by Pierre August Cot, 2 – Thoughts by John Henry Henshall, 3 – Forgiven by Thomas Blackshear II

SONGS: 1 – Love Runs Out by One Republic, 2 – Northern Lights by Cider Sky, 3 – Fly Away by Lenny Kravitz

PLAYS: 1 – The Phantom of the Opera, 2 – 1776, 3 – Fiddler on the Roof

MUSICALS: 1 – The Importance of Being Earnest, 2 – Scapino!, 3 – And Then There Were None

What about YOU? What are some of your favorites?

Keep your pen on the page,
Beth

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Short and…Sweat?

I’m going to make this week’s post short and sweet (or, as a childhood friend would write: Short and sweat.)

Writing has happened, folks. It took two days, but I wrote over 1,000 words. Very grateful for everyone’s prayers and support. And God’s. I really credit Him with helping me A LOT.

I’ve also been reading quite a bit, which I think has helped also. Not quite out of the woods, but I am cautiously optimistic that I’m going to be just fine 😉

How are YOU?

Keep your pen on the page,
Beth

P.S. Lana Del Rey’s haunting rendition of “Once Upon a Dream” has provided a lovely background for my writing. I could listen to it hours on end, and may have done so…*ahem*

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Hungry

There’s something terrifying about starting a new blog post. I mean, half the time I don’t know what I’m going to write about when I sit down. *GULP* And it’s never more terrifying than when you’re overcome with doubts in other areas.

WRITER’S BLAH.

So, what have I been doing about it? I’ve been feeding my brain. Lots of reading. Lots of movies. This is all necessary. It’s part of the writing process as much as, well, writing. And it’s been working–for the most part. I’m not 100%. Then again, when am I ever?

The point is, I haven’t quit. I don’t plan on ever quitting though I feel like it at times.

I need to keep telling myself what I’m always telling you guys: Keep your pen on the page.

Remember, we’re in this together!
Beth

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A Drop of Empathy

I read a thought-provoking meme yesterday about alcohol. About how it ruins lives when used in excess and to numb the pain. It was very cleverly-worded, and I wish I could remember what it said verbatim, but that was the gist.

In my book Circus in a Shot Glass (out on submission), the main character is an alcoholic. I’m not one to give things away, but drinking is a way of coping for her. I do not drink, so how to write about a character that does? Two things…

RESEARCH. Not of the imbibing variety, but I did some talking with a psychiatrist, who straightened me out on a few points. There was also a friend who kindly looked at it and pointed out some inaccuracies, which I then fixed.

But the biggest part of getting the character right for me was TAPPING INTO MY OWN PAIN AND USING EMPATHY. While writing CIASG, I became the character. I had to get my mind in a certain place by calling up dark moments, less-than-lucid moments, confusion, fuzziness, pain.

Being a writer can be very similar to being an actor. You research the role and, for a while, you become whoever you’re portraying. For example: in my high school production of The Miracle Worker, I portrayed Annie Sullivan. During one rehearsal, I lost myself in the role and wept real tears. Annie was talking about how Helen is not her child, denying that she loves the girl, fearing to love another soul again, because love hurts. She’d lost her brother at a young age, after promising that she’d take care of him. She promised to take care of Helen. Was history about to repeat itself? Was Helen going to be lost to the darkness of her own little world forever? All of these emotions overpowered me and I had trouble finishing the scene.

But I’ve never lost a brother or anyone I said I’d take care of. But I’ve known loss, even if it was on a lesser scale or in a different way. By taking your own experiences and magnifying them, you can understand anyone to a degree. And you can understand the characters you’re writing.

If you’re not a writer, you use this intuition when you talk and listen to someone who’s grieving or sick. You can use it when reading (which makes the story all the more enjoyable, in my own humble opinion.)

That’s all for now.

Keep your nose in a book and your pen on the page,
Beth