I finished the rewrites for my second romance. I’m a firm believer in celebrating every single, little victory that I can as a writer. So after wine, I gave myself permission to write something pretty much out of my wheel house. And yes, I was sober when I made that decision. I wanted to write a short story in five parts, with each part told from a different POV, no repeats. I’m not sure how well it will work, so I’m putting it on my webpage. That’s where I put short-shorts that don’t fit my usual books and novellas–stories from a minor character’s POV or with a different tone than I use for the book or novella series they come from, little bits and pieces that don’t fit anywhere else. They’re my “fun” writing.
For Part 1 of Witch Gone Bad, I went way out of my comfort zone. I started with the villain’s voice. Now, Les Edgerton would give me grief about using the term “villain.” He prefers the terms protagonist to hero or heroine and antagonist rather than villain, for good reasons, which you can find here: http://lesedgertononwriting.blogspot.com/2015/02/antagonists-and-protagonists.html. I love the man and love reading his writing advice, but for me, Merlot feels more like a villain than an antagonist. That’s not what gave me grief, though. The hard part of writing from her POV was that she uses her sensuality to get what she wants. I never wrote a sex scene until I started writing urban fantasy. My Sunday School teachers and my mother frowned every time lust snuck into my writing. Now, don’t get me wrong. I happily READ sex scenes, but I wasn’t very good at writing them. But practice improves almost everything, even fumbling first efforts, and I’ve gotten better over time. This scene was different, though. Merlot uses sex as a trap, and I struggled with it. (I read Karen Soutar’s blog stories, though, and she could teach me a thing or two: https://karensoutar.wordpress.com/).
Part 2, thankfully, returned to some of my favorite protagonists, Babet and Prosper, and his partner, Hatchet. I got to fall back into the good guys-looking for the bad-guy POV. (And I hope you like this, Joan Lisanti, because it’s different than most of my Babet/Prosper stories).
Part 3, I wrote from the mother’s POV. I wanted this part, though VERY short, to capture a mother’s emotion when her daughter’s in the middle of teenage rebellion and hasn’t come home. I went with a less is more approach. For me, writing grief and strong emotions is a tough call. What do you say to someone who’s been devastated? Words never feel like enough. How do you convey that? For me, it’s tricky.
Part 4, I hope, adds a wrinkle to the story, a little twist. Merlot only thinks she’s bad. Hezra is worse.
Part 5, of course, (since I wrote the story in five parts) is where the good and bad meet. I’ve written all of the other parts, and I’ve started this one, but I have so many players, I’m keeping my fingers crossed–which makes it really hard to type:) This should be fun. Wish me luck.
Anyway, I’m going to put up one part of the story every day, from Monday through Friday, starting this Monday, August 10th. Some parts are only 2 pages, others a little longer. If you have any comments, let me know. And I want to thank my Friday night friend, Joyce Abramson, for looking at these for me. My poor critique partners have suffered enough lately, so I asked her to give this a go.
My webpage: http://www.judithpostswritingmusings.com/
Or you can tweet me: @judypost
P.S. I’ve talked about lots of things on this blog, but Jane Friedman wrote a brilliant post about the writer’s most basic tool: words. It’s worth reading: http://janefriedman.com/2015/08/06/word-choice/?utm_content=buffer4062b&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer