Tag: writing

A to Z Challenge

I recently saw people talking about an “April A to Z Challenge” on Twitter, and it sounds like a really fun thing to take part in! The basic idea is that you write something – be it a short story, poem, blog post, chapter, whatever you want – each weekday during April (and a weekend at the end, to make enough days), corresponding to each letter of the alphabet. Then you go on a sort of Blog Party every day to share your work and check out others taking part in the challenge. 🙂

Everyone chooses their own theme for the posts they’re going to make during April. I’ve had a story in mind for a few years – well, the original idea was a collection of short stories which all add up into one large story, but now I’m leaning more towards it being one novel split into chapters. But that might change. Panster woo! 😉  And this challenge sounds like a perfect opportunity to get it out of my head and onto paper, with each chapter/short story fitting each letter of the alphabet.

So my theme reveal (and novel title) for the A to Z Challenge is…

Secret Diary Of A Serial Killer

It feels so good to actually get that title out into the world! And I’m really excited to be writing something that’s so different from what I usually write. For those new to my blog (Hi! Welcome 🙂 ) I usually write urban fantasy, but for this story I’ll be delving into the world of crime writing. Maybe some fantasy will pop up in there, as I’m a pantser that’s always a possibility, but right now I doubt it.

Are you thinking of taking part in the A to Z Challenge? What theme have you chosen?


Story A Day vs WiP

So, the Story A Day challenge worked really well for what I set out to do!  Day one refreshed my mind.  At day two my brain was switched back on in writing mode and I had a flood of ideas for my WiP that have made me so excited to work on it again.  Day three I was still working through the ideas in my head for my WiP while I wrote Death By… (which is possibly my favourite story of them all).  Then at day four I made the mistake of forcing myself to write a Story A Day instead of actually working on my WiP, which is what I really wanted to do.

I temporarily forgot how the Story A Day challenge was a tool for me, to get my brain back in writing gear, and instead I forced myself to work on a challenge story instead of the project that I was doing this all for!

Which means, for now, no more Story A Day stories because I’m really eager to get back to my WiP!  The ideas I’ve had basically mean I’m changing the whole world-building for the novel.  This is no small task and I’m wondering if it hasn’t sunk in yet just how much work I have ahead of me because instead of feeling nervous, I’m really excited by it 🙂  Which is why I know I need to work on that instead of the challenge for a while.  My brain is back in writing gear, my enthusiasm is soaring and the fun is absolutely back in writing for me!

I will be writing some more Story A Day stories, I enjoyed doing them and still have a couple of ideas that I want to get out at some point.  But for the time being, they won’t be every day because I really need, and want (woo!), to work on my WiP.  And that’s the most important thing, to get the novel written 🙂

Wish me luck!

 


Day Four Story: Made From Magic

I do confess that I don’t like the title of this story and it may get changed later, but I’m really tired so for now it can stay as it is.  As with the others, this short story hasn’t been edited – I just finished writing it a minute ago – so please forgive any errors 🙂

Enjoy! …hopefully 😉

 

Made From Magic.

There’s always a guy with an eye patch.

“Do you guys buy them in bulk?” I asked.

The guy who was guarding me ignored my question and continued looking ahead. He stood with his back facing the door, arms folded behind him. He was stocky, about 5’9” – short for a werewolf but I doubt anyone ever told him that. That must have been one hell of an injury to take the eye of a were.

Suddenly he stepped aside. A moment later the door opened and a thinner, more classically handsome man, walked through. He was greying at the temples and had equally grey eyes. The door closed behind him and the werewolf resumed his place in front of it. But this guy was no wolf.

He circled around me. I kept him in sight for as far as my head would turn. They’d bound my hands behind the chair and my head was restrained with a strap.

Eventually he came into view again. I had a sudden image of him making faces behind my back and I burst out laughing at the absurdity of it.

He frowned at me. “You have a strange sense of humour. For someone in your predicament I’d have thought you to be more…” He paused. One hand circling as if winding something up in order to find the right word.

“Can we move this along?” I said, bored of his time wasting.

His mouth snapped shut and his gaze hardened. “Very well. I’ve never known someone in such a hurry for torture.”

At a flick of his wrist the floor in front of me vanished. The spell was one I didn’t know. One that only he, or those he deemed worthy enough to tell, would be able to use. And one that I’d been waiting for him to cast.

I whispered a few words under my breath and the werewolf sprung forward. His eye widened in horror as he realised his fate. As he fell into the hole at my feet I finished the words of the second spell I had on my lips and my sorcerer captor stood as still as stone, his hand half way through a flourish. A spell that I’ve no doubt would have hurt like hell.

I worked my hands out of the rope I’d loosened hours before, and undid the strap at my head and the one at my feet.

“Now,” I said. “Let’s get started, shall we?”

I reduced the intensity of the spell enough so that he could talk.

“We bound your hands!” He cried out. “You can’t cast!”

“Yeah,” I said. “I don’t work like that.”

I flexed my wrists, they were stiff after being bound for so long.

“You’re an abomination!” He shouted.

“Perhaps.”

He was probably right. I didn’t come from a magic user family. I came from a spell gone wrong; I was made from magic, not born into it. The same rules that they had to live by, didn’t always apply to me.

“But that’s why you wanted me here, right?” I asked, taking a step around the hole towards him.

His eyes followed me and he clenched his jaw. He didn’t need to answer, I knew it was why they’d brought me here. It was what I’d been counting on.

“The thing is,” I said, flexing my arms above my head. “I wanted me here too.”

“Why?”

He tried to watch as I walked behind him, mimicking his movements from earlier. I stopped at his back and said a spell that pushed him forward towards the hole.

“Because I don’t like you,” I said.

It wasn’t the whole truth but I’ve seen too many Bond movies to stand around talking about my reasons for killing the guy before I do it. As he vanished over the edge, his scream echoed around the room.

Well, that was the easy part. Now to get out of here.


Day Three Story: Death By…

Again, sorry for the delay in posting the third story for my Story A Day challenge.  Jubilee weekend preparation and plans (we had a party) took away my online time!  This one is short and again unedited so hopefully you will keep that in mind 🙂  I think any pet owners will be able to relate to where this story came from in the depths of my mind hehe!

 

Death By…

As I lay there with a knife sticking out of my chest, I couldn’t help but laugh. It was me who’d told everyone to be careful. Me who’d said “That cat will kill you if you don’t watch it!”

And now it was me who lay dying on the floor. Cup and saucer smashed on the hall tile, cake plate and cake thoroughly decimated. Cake knife in chest.

The cat sat looking smug on the stairs she’d just used as a racetrack. Casually licking one paw as if the speck of dust that dirtied her fur was the only care in the world.

It’s funny the things that go through your mind at times like these. I felt miffed that I wouldn’t get to have that last slice of chocolate cake, the one I’d secreted away last night before anyone else saw it. I noticed a cobweb on the underside of the stairs, dust clinging to it, and wished I had a duster handy to wipe it away.

I wished I hadn’t paid that damned overdue bill yesterday morning.

I tried to turn and see the hall table. The phone sat out of reach, taunting me. Next to it, the clock’s hands clicked to 4:30pm. No one would be home for hours.

As I turned my head back I saw a chunk of cake that had scattered near my shoulder. Teasingly close. The cat stretched and pawed at the bottom stair, claws extending in maniacal splendor. Then with a flick of her tail she sauntered back upstairs.

I sighed at the cake and gurgled a little. At least no one else would get to eat it either.

 


Day Two Story: The Guard

Sorry for this being a day late.  I was so tried last night my brain wouldn’t stay awake long enough for me to post it, so today will be a double post with today’s story coming a bit later 🙂

This short story is from an idea that came to me yesterday as I was eating breakfast.  I know, I get the strangest ideas at the strangest times!  As before, it’s unedited so bear that in mind and hopefully you’ll forgive any typos, spelling and grammatical errors.

 

The Guard.

I pressed my back against the wall, the darkness enveloping me. Rough stone dug into my shoulders but I didn’t wince. I couldn’t aford to be picky about where I hid. This was the only building I had chance to get into when I heard them coming. Don’t get caught. That’s all that mattered.

Footsteps sounded down the hall. I’d left the door to this room ajar to throw off The Guard, whenever they showed up. But these weren’t the militant footsteps from work boots, these were hurried scuffled sounds.

A woman came into view, pushing her daughter into the room. She looked about 9, maybe younger. These days everyone had to grow up fast. Unless you were family of The Guard.

She rushed over to my corner. Silently I cursed at her as she shoved her daughter into the hole in which I’d crawled. Only then did the girl see me and squeeked.

“Someone’s in here Mom!” she said in a panicked whisper.

I glared at the kid, ready to shove her back out. Noise wasn’t tollerable. Noise would get us found.

“It’s ok”, said the woman, soothing her daughter and pushing her further in.

Only then did I catch the sound of more regimented footsteps coming this way. I pulled the girl closer to me, forcing her to inch back as far as she could. Too late now, she was a burden I didn’t want but one that I wouldn’t let betray my hiding place. The darkness would hide us both. But not her mother. I got ready to push them both out if she tried to climb in here too.

The woman kissed her daughter’s hand then rushed to the otherside of the room, shut the door and hid in a darkened corner. I wanted to scream at her. Shut doors were the first rooms they searched. My heart felt as though it beat in time with every step I could hear in the corridor. The girl pressed further against me. Good. She wouldn’t give me away.

The footsteps stopped outside the door to our safe haven and I felt as though I’d gone deaf. My heartbeat, our breathing, everything seemed to stop until the door handle started to turn and two men of The Guard pushed into the room.

I covered the girl’s mouth with my hand before she had time to squeek. She tried to wriggle free but I held her firm. If she suffocated that was better for her than whatever The Guard would do.

“We know someone’s in ‘ere”, one voice said, the sound moving around the room. “It’s only a matter of time before we find… you.” I could hear the smile in the last word, the emphasis not lost on me.

The woman screamed as they pulled her up from the corner. She put up a fight, lashing out with everything she was worth. As they dragged her through the door she tried to twist in their arms, presumably to look back at the daughter she’d never see again, but they held her too tightly. Like me holding her kid.

I waited, hand over the girls mouth, holding her tightly into the darkness for what must have been half an hour. Long after the footsteps had gone away; after the screaming had deminished to wimpers before they threw the woman in the van they always drove. Long after the little girl in my arms had started silently crying.

Slowly, I moved my hand from her mouth. She just sat there. I pushed her forward to get out of the hole. Staying here any longer would be bad, she needed to get it together. Slowly she crawled forward and moved to the corner they took her mother from. She turned and sat, back against the wall and looked at me.

“We have to go,” I said.

She stood and followed me out, not a word came from her. So, maybe this wouldn’t be so bad. She stays quiet, she isn’t a burden. In fact, with two of us we could scout better, I could teach her to hunt and where to find the best hiding places.

I looked over my shoulder at the kid, still following me with small quiet steps. Yeah, this wouldn’t be so bad.

As we turned a corner I heard voices in a room down the hall. We’d waited to long. I pressed back around the corner but not before someone had caught sight of my movement.

“Down there!” a voice shouted.

Running footsteps chased towards us. I looked at the kid, took her hand and shoved her around the corner.

“Stop right there!” commanded the voice as they reached the kid.

I ran, as fast as I could, in the oposite direction.