Month: November 2015

“Lightning in the Black Bottle” Part 3 (NaNo2015)

This story was originally written as part of NaNoWriMo 2015. To read the complete story, go to the MISCELLANY section of this website.

Before long, he heard the soft gurgle of a stream. Running along through the trees was a creek, muddy and shallow. Sitting on the edge of it was a raggedy woman, her hair stringy as ivy vines, her clothes the same color as the brown water. Her back was to Jack. She sat dangling her barefoot feet above the flowing water, humming softly a dark tune. Jack had a good ear for music, and he could hear a minor key as quick as a bird. He tried to step away from the creek and the woman, but twigs snapped and ground betrayed him. She whirled her head in an instant, and cut off her last note like an axe falling on a prisoner’s neck.

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“Avalon Summer” Part 1 (NaNo2015)

We stayed with my grandparents in the summer of 1992 because Dad had just died and Mom needed some time to “figure things out.” Why she couldn’t figure things out with me and Jay there, I don’t know. But I was kinda glad to be at Grandma and Grandpa’s. They lived in a woods and had a house with ten rooms. And their garage had an upstairs. We didn’t even have a garage in Barstow.

It took a week to drive there, with mom in the front seat crying most of the time. I just read books. Jay had his headphones on the whole time. But we saw the country, I guess. I didn’t care. I just wanted to swim in my grandparents’ pool and see the creek that ran down in the valley behind their house. It was only our second time in Michigan; the first time, I had only been seven. But I remembered it as if it were a movie I’d watched two dozen times. The images from that first trip unspooled in my brain for weeks at a time. It was the best trip I’d ever had. Michigan was so green. It smelled like fresh rain water all the time, even on the sunniest days — the kind of rain smell that meant, “Things are growing here. There is life here.” I loved it.

So after Dad died, when Mom said we were going to stay with Grandma and Grandpa for the summer, I smiled. It was the first smile I’d had in a long time.

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“Lightning in the Black Bottle” Part 2 (NaNo2015)

This story was originally written as part of NaNoWriMo 2015. To read the complete story, go to the MISCELLANY section of this website.

The trees in the Herne were older than the mountains. They were the first things of the world, twisted and tall, trunks as wide as a giant’s ass. The trees gave off a smell of must, like a cabinet full of parchments and scrolls kept in the cellar of a witch. Jack sucked in the musty air. It was going to be a long journey to the nests of the herons.

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“Lightning in the Black Bottle” Part 1 (NaNo2015)

This story was originally written as part of NaNoWriMo 2015. To read the complete story, go to the MISCELLANY section of this website.

Jack Lightning felt the mists of morning against his pale skin. He was sneaking through the swamp in what should have been a messy business, but Jack loved the muck. He’d just stolen a pair of tall leather boots, tough as seal-skin, black as tar, so it was a pleasure to let them slosh in the inky mire. And the swamp was the shortest way. Jack always loved a short cut.

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“Treasures Three” Part 1 (NaNo2015)

Folks want what they don’t have. That’s the way of things, and no mistake. Allow me to wax poetical for a slight moment when I say, “Desire is the strongest tonic in the world and in all the other worlds of the infinitesimal universe.” That’s my feeling anyway. Nobody never asked me ‘bout it, but I know it just the same. Desire. Strong stuff.

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NaNo 2015: It’s Happening

Each day this November, I will post the words I write for NaNo here on the blog. Unedited. Pure and unvarnished. My NaNo “novel” will take shape before your very eyes, out in the open for all to see.

My “novel” is not a novel this year. As I mentioned, I’m rebelling and writing a collection of unconnected short stories (plus a novella). And each day, I will post what I write so others can see how these stories take shape. No editing. Very little planning. I’m letting it all hang out.

This is probably a crazy plan, but I’m hoping the added pressure of posting my NaNo writing to the blog will help me stay focused and disciplined. That’s the plan anyway.

My first round of NaNo writing will be posted by the end of the day (she said with a fierce glint of hope in her eye).

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