?

Log in

Drabble: Corrupted Power

Prompt: By the Bed


On the nightstand in the tiny bedroom we used to share, I keep your picture. The frame is tarnished now but I can't bring myself to clean it. I don't want it to change. I want it to stay just the way it was when we had it made.

The artist's hand wasn't perfect, but she captured you so well; I see more than just your face, I see your aura, your lust for life, your contentment. If only he hadn't come and dangled that one temptation before you, hadn't made you those grand promises that I could never match, hadn't stolen your heart with his talk of power and peace.

You were always an idealist, my dear. You always thought the world could be a better place, and all it took was the right carpetbagger to come along and offer you that perfect, idealized, impossible picture. It's not your fault really. I can't blame you for it. Power has always been your Achilles' heel, and now you're stuck in that terrible contract because of it.

He has you wrapped up in words, tied up with responsibilities, locked away in an illusion that fulfills your dreams. You know better though, don't you, my dear? You can see the cracks bleeding through, you can see the disruption you cause, you can see that absolute power can't bring perfect peace like you imagined so long ago. Don't worry, I'm coming for you. I'll break you free of his grip one way or another. I won't leave you to rot away in a prison cell, even if you did choose to be there. You couldn't possibly have known what it would be like; you couldn't have known how it would tear us apart. You wouldn't have accepted if you had known, right, dear?


Want to read more Drabbles? Click here.

I post a new Drabble (almost) every Wednesday at Noon ET. Click Follow on the right to get weekly updates.


Originally posted on Typetrigger. Fiction in 300 words or less. Please pardon typos or grammatical errors. See sidebar for copyright information.



Drabble: Diverted Flight

Prompt: Diverted Flight

Into the trees, you crash and spin
the limbs cut ribbons into your skin.
You claw at the branches, your fingers rubbed bare
but there's nothing to grab onto but air.


The ground rushes toward you at impossible speed
bright roses greet you, immune to your needs.
Their blood-red blossoms bow and sway
already prepared for your inevitable grave.


A sharp pain pulls against your chest
bones snap and your lungs protest
Your fall has ended but the pain only spreads
too late it comes, and you're filled with dread.


Your parachute caught up high in the trees
You'll soon be a dead man swaying in the breeze.
Saved from a fall that was sure to kill
The ground won't finish you, but dehydration will.


You reach for your dagger to cut yourself free
but frown as your vision blurs; you can barely see
A few broken ribs are the least of your fears
regret fills you as you realize this is real.


A voice in the distance sparks up some hope
but your breath cannot seem to escape your throat.
Something slick slips silently from your fingertips,
the knife hits the earth, a curse on your lips.


They're searching for you, down far below
but you can already feel yourself letting go
A gust of wind, and you're lost in the trees,
and all because of a poorly timed breeze.


The knife will be found long before the body;
the fool who leaped without researching his hobby.

###

Want to read more Drabbles? Click here.

I post a new Drabble (almost) every Wednesday at Noon ET. Click Follow on the right to get weekly updates.

Originally posted on Typetrigger. Fiction in 300 words or less. Please pardon typos or grammatical errors. See sidebar for copyright information.


Drabble: Siblings

Prompt: Siblings

My dearest sister, how I miss you these days. We may not share a blood bond, but our bond was just as true. Remember when we went into the woods and built a fort? That became our hideaway for a full week when the village blamed us for their ten dead cattle. At the first sign of disease, they blamed those with powers they didn't understand. You were always a clever builder, sister.

We went to the lake once and summoned forth the monsters that slept beneath the still waters. More than just fish answered us that day, and we learned about the neighbors we never knew we had. We gave each other the strength to face those dark, shadowy creatures; we gave each other the strength not to look away. We punished our enemies that day, sister, but we should have killed them.

Then we were accepted into the sisterhood and took the marks. Every time I look at my arm, every time I feel the puffy scar across my skin, I think of you. I think of us huddled together in those woods, I think of us standing in determination before that lake, and I remember the people who took you away.

I don't know if you're alive or not still, sister, but I will find you and I will punish your captors. If they have you bound, I will free you. If they have killed you, I swear, I will find a way to bring you back. Even if I must make a foul pact with some untrustworthy wretch, you will be at my side again.

Our friendship can't be parted by death. We are a sisterhood that can't be broken. Fear not, little sister, for I am coming for you. May our enemies quake in terror.

Originally posted on Typetrigger. Fiction in 300 words or less.
Please pardon typos or grammatical errors. See sidebar for copyright information.

To the Throneroom

I'll admit it, I didn't think I was going to make it this month. When I looked over the weekend and realized that I was around 2,000 words behind where I needed to be, I worried that this would be another failed Camp NaNo month.

Instead...
CampNano2014Winner1
WOOHOO!!

It was only when I went back in and had to verify my novel that I realized just how much work I had put into this piece throughout July. I was copying scene after scene; some are going to be included in the final novel, and others are there to help me explore characters. I've had several unexpected characters crop up that I didn't expect, like Lieutenant Varg, the friendly but secondary military personnel who takes it upon himself to check in on Shaleigh and her friends from time to time. Then there's Meryl the imp who is tasked with taking care of guests and cleaning up after them, but who harbors a darker side as well. Not to mention my two dismissive healers, Franklin and Mel, who were not too pleased to have to deal with Shaleigh obviously terrible injury.

All in all, it's been a fun month, and I don't even think I've hit the hit the halfway point on this novel yet. I'll keep posting updates here to help me stay on target.

Here's the progress on my YA other-world fantasy novel about urban explorer Shaleigh Mallett who is whisked away to the Land of the Fae. Along the way she encounters living statues, friendly minotaurs, and a backstabbing ruler. When she gets tangled up in a love story that can't possibly end well, Shaleigh finds herself forced to make a difficult choice that could change the future of this new land, and prevent her from ever getting home.



Project: Madam Cloom's Garden
Current Word Count: 37,040
New Words Written:
7/30 - 2,267
7/31 - 2,145

Progress: Learned that imps can be quite pushy. Picked up some awesome new clothes; then got mocked by the very person they were supposed to impress. Finally met the person who wants to get rid of me.

Next up: A tour of the land, meeting up with a frenemy, and an unexpected sight. Not nearly enough training though.

Commentary: It's amazing what a deadline hovering over my head will do for my daily word counts! I sure didn't think I could squeeze in >4,000 words in a couple of days, but there it is. I'm happy that the lady antagonist has finally arrived on the set, but I'm looking forward to some upcoming scenes with a few of my favorite characters.

Drabble: Bigger than You

Prompt: Bigger than You

She's bigger than you and definitely built. She wields a sword that could skewer you vertically and not reach the hilt. Her reach is incredible. All you have is a set of daggers, little good when you're rolling to keep your head attached to your shoulders.

You duck down just in time as the greatsword whistles over your head. You're pretty sure you lost a few hairs in that move, but at least you're alive. You can't keep up at this pace. She's not even breathing hard and here you are performing acrobatic feats. You need space to move. You need distance to think.

You spin on your heel and sprint for the door, slamming through the cold metal and running to the opposite end of the yard. Fencing topped with barbed wire greet you on all sides. A defeated whimper pulls at your throat.

"You can't escape me," she calls with a laugh, her powerful form emerging from the doorway. She rests the flat end of her blade against her shoulder and smiles. You're the captured mouse here, not her. You're the one who's trapped on a butcher's block.

That doesn't mean you give up.

You laugh and show a cocky grin. "You have to catch me first."

She barks a laugh and readies her blade, her muscled legs making little work of the distance. You have to think, while you still have a head, while a steamroller is barreling towards you.

Out of pure instinct more than intelligence, you spin your dagger in the air, catch the blade between your fingertips and chuck it at her. Her wild eyes get huge as the blade plunges into her forehead. She collapses with the outrage of a beast. You stand panting between nervous laughter.

"You gotta be quicker than that!"

Originally posted on Typetrigger. Fiction in 300 words or less.
Please pardon typos or grammatical errors. See sidebar for copyright information.

For the Love of Tigers

Today is International Tiger Day, so I thought I needed to give a shout-out to some of my favorite animals. First and foremost, let's get the adorable pictures out of the way.
Adorable doesn't even begin to describe this cub.

Not enough cuteness for you? Then I recommend you head over to Mother Jones and check out their whole page dedicated to the beautiful creatures. Don't worry, I'll wait until you get back. Got to get the Aww! out of your system after all.
Now if you want to read more about Siberian tigers, I recommend checking out The Tiger: A True Story of Vengeance and Survival by John Vaillant. I listened to this book on audio last year, checked out for free from my library, and I have to say it was an intense listen. For me at least, the audio book helped because listening to how the names were pronounced helped me to have more of a distinction for the characters. Check out a snippet of my review of the book:


The tiger is revered, feared, compartmentalized, and idealized. There is a main story, but mixed throughout are backgrounds for the various people whose lives were affected, as well as fascinating tales of the various tigers that our main forest ranger has encountered.

I learned a lot about Russian history and its economy in this book, as well as all the temperamental relations that have existed in the past with her neighbors. The book is also peppered with adventurous tiger stories (besides the primary tale), even from a few survivors, and you learn how intelligent, territorial, and vengeful these animals are. These sections were by far my favorite parts of the book, and made for some entertaining discussions around the dinner table.


[...]

As frustrating as the structure was at times, listening to it in audiobook format made the Russian names, terms, and locales easier to understand and I didn't feel daunted by the language as much as I think I would have been had I read this in paper/ebook format.

Overall a fascinating book about a beautiful but dangerous predator.


Another good source for information on not only the Siberian tiger but also the people of the Taiga is the documentary titled Happy People (available on Netflix), which walks you through a regular working day for people who live among the largest land man-eaters on the planet. You really get a good taste for the environment in Vaillant's The Tiger, but it really hits home to see the reality of it. Not only do you see how they have to create makeshift traps in the woods but you also watch them make their own boats, all using the simple but reliable tools at their disposal.

Finally I'd like to leave you with some excellent places that work with tigers on a regular basis.

  • Big Cat Rescue in Florida. A wildlife conservatory for big cats that are rescued and given a happy home. The video and pictures they post on a regular basis will make your heart melt.

  • Noah's Ark in Georgia. I have a special fondness for this non-profit located right around the corner from where I live. They take in all sorts of animals, not just tigers. Recently they took in a bunch of dogs that were removed from a puppy mill, got them cleaned up, gave them medical exams, and will soon be adopting them out. One of their biggest attractions though is their BLT trio - a bear, lion, and tiger who live in the same enclosure and are incidentally best friends.


Happy World Tiger Day everybody!

One Hand on the Steering

Plenty of writing getting done over her, just not as much as Camp NaNo demands of me. I'm trying not to sweat it too much though. The story is benefiting from me taking my time to mold each section before heading onto the next, even if I don't quite hit my word count goal this month.
vineyardArchway
Custom archway for vineyard in Wisconsin.

If you follow my weekly Drabbles, you'll notice I skipped last week. Honestly I don't have any real excuse except that my head has been in Shaleigh's world and it's difficult to squeeze out little bitty one-shots on TypeTrigger as often as I like because of it. Don't worry though, I should be getting back to a regular weekly Drabble schedule now.

Here's the progress on my YA other-world fantasy novel about urban explorer Shaleigh Mallett who is whisked away to the Land of the Fae. Along the way she encounters living statues, friendly minotaurs, and a backstabbing ruler. When she gets tangled up in a love story that can't possibly end well, Shaleigh finds herself forced to make a difficult choice that could change the future of this new land, and prevent her from ever getting home.



Project: Madam Cloom's Garden
Current Word Count: 32,641
New Words Written: Plenty since my last update, but not enough to get me caught up with Camp NaNo! I'm a pretty consistent 700 words behind schedule on this piece each night despite my best efforts. We'll see if I can muster up the energy to write more over the next few days.

Progress: A visit to the rude healers, a heated argument, and an awkward guest have put Shaleigh into a rather down mood. I guess it was inevitable that the realization would fall on her eventually. It's a good thing she's about to make a friend.

Next up: Making a friend despite the obstacles and a lesson about masters/madams in this city.

Commentary: Some of my favorite scenes so far? Describing Teagan's gazebo and glassed-in conservatory with its vines creeping up the walls, trying to decide if there should be a limit to the jerkiness of the healers, and figuring out what kind of formal outfit Shaleigh would choose to wear.

From lands far beyond

Not as much progress over the last few days as I would like, but I'm getting some really fun scenes and dialog in. I'm also happy because some of my favorite characters are starting to show up. Is it bad to have favorites?

Here's the progress on my YA other-world fantasy novel about urban explorer Shaleigh Mallett who is whisked away to the Land of the Fae. Along the way she encounters living statues, friendly minotaurs, and a backstabbing ruler. When she gets tangled up in a love story that can't possibly end well, Shaleigh finds herself forced to make a difficult choice that could change the future of this new land, and prevent her from ever getting home.



Project: Madam Cloom's Garden
Current Word Count: 23,654
New Words Written:
7/16: 994
7/18: 353

Progress: A convenient camera, a bloody death, and nearly a plummet over the edge. Banter between two enemies who know each other too well and Shaleigh learned she can have a big mouth at times.

Next up: Shaleigh is once again on her own and in a strange place, but this city is far more dangerous than she realizes.

Commentary: The dialog in this last bit was a lot of fun and has multiple levels to it. I love it when the words come out the way you want them to. I get to tap a bit into Shaleigh's historical knowledge next, which is one of the many perks of her being an urban explorer. It really gives her a touch of reality and groundedness that starkly contrasts her to the rest of the world around her.

Camp NaNo Stats:

Average Words Per Day: 807

Your Average Per Day: 715

Words Written Today: 353

Target Word Count: 25,000

Total Words Written: 12,886

Words Remaining: 12,114

Current Day: 18

Days Remaining: 14

At This Rate You Will Finish On: August 4, 2014

Words Per Day To Finish On Time: 866

When Day Turned to Night

I haven't gotten a chance to update the word metrics in a few days. Various excuses include impromptu family get-togethers, laziness, and the weekend.

Here's today's progress on my YA other-world fantasy novel about urban explorer Shaleigh Mallett who is whisked away to the Land of the Fae. Along the way she encounters living statues, friendly minotaurs, and a backstabbing ruler. When she gets tangled up in a love story that can't possibly end well, Shaleigh finds herself forced to make difficult decisions about people she's come to truly care about.



Project: Madam Cloom's Garden
Current Word Count: 16,753
New Words Written:
7/8: 1,035
7/10: 13 (Yes, thirteen WHOLE WORDS. There was lots of revision to do, okay?)
7/11: 1,077
7/12: 1,013
7/13: 1,556
7/14: 910

Progress: Day turned to night and night turned to day. Not all daggers are magical, and faeries have a mixed reputation.

Commentary: I honestly didn't expect to put werewolves in this early, but here they are. At least it resulted in an awesome chase scene. I'm also very happy that Talek and Briar are going to be making appearances soon. I guess it's bad when you cheer for your own characters.

Next up: Difficult decisions, rude behavior, and a decision about cats.

The Ruined City of Aife

Taken by John Smith.
Taken by John Smith.

More writing metrics! In between running errands today and finishing up some last minute weekend relaxation, we squeezed in a little bit of writing time. Slow and steady wins the race, or at least that's what I'm telling myself.

Here's today's progress on my YA other-world fantasy novel about urban explorer Shaleigh Mallett who is whisked away to the Land of the Fae. Along the way she encounters living statues, friendly minotaurs, and a backstabbing ruler. When she gets tangled up in a love story that can't possibly end well, Shaleigh finds herself forced to make difficult decisions about people she's come to truly care about.



Project: Madam Cloom's Garden
Current Word Count: 16,753
New Words Written: 950

Progress: We learn about the City of Aife and its people. Shaleigh goes on a short trip.

Commentary: More talks with Mawr the Guardian and learning about the sad tale of Aife. Ooh and a (once) gorgeous library. Not a lot, but I had a good time adding plenty of lush descriptions. This piece is coming along nicely even though it's a holiday weekend!

Next up: Painful explanations, terrible smells, and difficult truths.

Latest Month

March 2015
S M T W T F S
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031    

Copyright

© Marlena Frank, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Marlena Frank with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
Powered by LiveJournal.com
Designed by chasethestars