Posted by: Elizabeth Anne Mitchell | June 11, 2014

Joining WIPpet Wednesday and a ROW80 update, too

This is my first foray into #WIPpet Wednesday, the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. I feel like I did when I peered down at the pool from the high dive the first time.  In order to feel just a tiny bit more secure, I’ve pulled 8 sentences (6 for June +1 +1 for the date) from a novel I’ve played with for a few years now. My protagonist is a young woman in 14th century Paris, who has just opened a message.

Christine remembered how Estienne had looked at the church door.  He had not smiled, and his hands trembled, but his eyes met hers with kindness.  The breeze had ruffled  his dark, curly hair, and lifted tendrils of Christine’s hair to reach toward him in concert with her thoughts.  Her mind wandered as the priest said several prayers, although a phrase pierced the fog now and then.  She blushed at the mention of children and grandchildren.  Finally, Estienne put his family ring on each of her fingers in turn, rubbing the inkstained one with a smile, before replacing it firmly on the one carrying the vein to her heart.  His hand was warm,  and so solid she could remember its touch ten years later.

Her hand cramped, crushing the parchment, driving its edges into her palm.  How could he be dead?

WIPpet is a blog hop, the links to which are here.

And for something completely different, my ROW80 check-in. It is the brain child of Kait Nolan, who describes the challenge here.

After paring down my goals, and focusing on a different project, the words are coming, at a drip, but I’m very glad to see them.  It helps to write about my childhood, even though, as I have always said, the truth will set you free, but first it will make you miserable. I’m learning what to write and throw out as an exercise in catharsis, which has no place in the memoir.

I’m managing to keep up with meditation and the simple yoga poses, which is helping to diffuse the stress of the day job.

I found, to my amazement and dismay, that I had begun over a half-dozen blog posts that were moldering in my drafts. I’m very glad to have found them, but horrified that I forgot all about them *facepalm*. It is past time that I should do some serious housekeeping on my blogs!  The upside is that after reading through them, several more ideas have surfaced. Also, my moribund blog is still receiving hits, so I need to pull the plug and direct my few hits to the main blog.

ROW80 is a blog hop as well.  Please go check-out the participants here.

smaller EM

 

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Responses

  1. Ooh. “How could he be dead?” That’s quite a hook.

    Welcome to WIPpet Wednesday! 🙂

    • Thanks, Amy. I blush to admit that is definitely one of my little darlings–I hope I don’t need to delete it at some point! I’ve been away from WIPpet for a few weeks, but hope to get back to it tomorrow.

  2. Welcome to WIPpet Wednesday! Awesome to have you ducking in.

    Um…oof! Okay, that last line hit just like that. No fair. Lulling me into that great memory…I love this line “lifted tendrils of Christine’s hair to reach toward him in concert with her thoughts.” Everything is so soft and wonderful. Well, up until the last bit. Nice juxtaposition.

    • Thanks, Kathi. I’ve been absent from WIPpet for a bit, but hope to rejoin tomorrow. I’m glad you liked the snippet. I don’t have anything as polished as that bit, so I fear I will disappoint, but part of the point is constructive criticism, no?

      • Polished or unpolished is all good. The WIPpeteers are not a picky bunch. The goal is to help foster consistent writing, and get feedback on bits in process.

      • Ah, that’s good to know. Thanks, Kathi.

  3. Welcome to WIPpet!! I love the depth of the grief here. It truly is amazing how long it lasts. The way the scene is set up works well with how grief itself works. Great job!

    • Thank you, Adrian. I don’t have anything quite as polished for tomorrow, but hey, all of you will get to see the rough side of my writing as well. 😉

  4. Well, that was a blow! Oh, poor Christine….

    The beginning kind of felt… it felt as if you hadn’t immersed yourself into the scene fully. Though by the end, with each detail so vivid and exacting, you clearly not only had the scene in mind, you had the story written (at least in your head)….

    I have to say, I always loved the Lapidary Prose blog. The explorations of language are some of my favorite topics… and if you ever find the time, I’d love to read more. Did you ever read Michael Quinion’s World Wide Words (I used to get it as a newsletter, but now it’s a) website? Wonderful stuff!

    Drafts…. yeah… I have a “few” of those too. Cool that they’re still inspiring you, That’s one of the best ways to work things, when one thing inspires another, which inspires another and yet another, ad infinitum

    • Thanks, Eden. I do need to start into the scene better. *taps pen on desk*

      I also appreciate your advice about the Lapidary Prose blog. Perhaps I can figure out a schedule that will work to keep that one going without exhausting myself keeping up with it. I’m not familiar with Michael Quinion’s website–I will have to take a look at it.

      I’m finding little pieces of things I want to write that sort of spawn each other in a sort of fanfold way. I’m very excited about it–and may be brave enough to put them on WIPpet.

      • Fanfolding is very cathartic too. 🙂

        When you feel up to some fun just reading wordly nibbles….
        http://www.worldwidewords.org/

  5. Drips might not seem like much but those drips add up. It’s much like a good coffee in that regard. Every cup comes from small drips. You’ll get there.

    • Good point, Ryan. Good coffee does take time to drip its perfection into the cup. I’m learning a little more patience than I used to have (which was none!).

      Are you joining Round Three? If you’re sitting it out, don’t be a stranger!

      • I thought about it but I’m sitting out this round. But thanks for asking!

      • I’m not sponsoring this Round, Ryan. I really felt like I needed to retract some of my commitments this summer and fall.

        I’ll make a mental note to catch up with you from time to time.

      • Thanks, Elizabeth. I hope the break provides a much needed rest.

  6. You lulled me with the first paragraph and knocked me down with that last line. Perfect! 🙂

    • Thanks, Fallon. I’m glad it worked the way I meant for it to do. I think I should have saved that polished bit for later on, because that is the best I’ve got right now! LOL

  7. Wow. A powerful excerpt.

    I haven’t tried WIPpet Wednesday, but I know a lot of bloggers who participate and I think it’s a great idea. Thanks for sharing your work!

    • Denise, I’m glad it had some punch. I’ve been away from WIPpet for a bit, but I hope to get back to it soon.

  8. Elizabeth,

    Hello there! I’m so tickled you decided to WIPpet with us! =)

    I love the part with the rings and the inkstained finger. Loveliness!

    And hear hear for words, at a drip or a faster clip. =)

    • Thanks, Shan. I missed a few weeks of WIPpet, but plan on getting back to it. I’m glad you liked the inkstained finger and the rings.

      The words are slowly dripping over the edge of the well–I’m trying very hard not to scare them! 🙂

      • Must not frighten the words…*whispers, and does not look t Elizabeth’s words directly…*

        Inkstained fingers get me every time. =D

      • LOL–sometimes it really does feel that way, Shan!

      • May you soon be presented with a gusher!=)

  9. Interesting comment about writing memoir, to delete that which is catharsis alone. I almost understand that need to write it all — and then decide what remains private. Also, thank you for reminding me that yoga and meditation can help with stress. I needed to be reminded. And congrats on posting/participating with WIPpet. It’s a great way to share wip with words that come in a rush or slowly. May the coming week be a good one.

    • Thanks for commenting, Beth. I used to write a lot of catharsis, and a good friend told me to exorcise the demons with burning what I wrote. It was amazingly freeing.

      I highly recommend yoga, although I have gotten away from it during my days in the Adirondacks. I walked for miles there, though, so I don’t feel terribly guilty.

  10. My current WIP is only coming in drips as well, and I’m rather having to force it out. I think I might have to find a secondary project as well. Or something.

    I love the juxtaposition between Christine’s memory and the harsh reality. Very powerful.

    • I’m glad you liked the snippet–that is just about the only polished bit in the entire thing, but it’s a start. May we both have open water flow soon!

    • Sometimes I have to do exactly that, Emily–go work on something else, or at least some other part of the same work.

      Thanks for the kind comment on the WIPpet–I’m glad it affected you.


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