A life for a life – Part 1

This is a little experiment. Below is the first part of my short story (recently written). All I would like to know is whether you would like to continue to read it. A simple YES or NO will do and your contribution is much appreciated 🙂

“So you wouldn’t say that False Bay is any different to any other prison?” the Cape Town Independent reporter asked, twirling his pen in the gap where two of his bottom teeth were knocked out. “No. No different”, the warden replied. Warden Rodemeyer considered the man seated in front of him with disdain and tried to ignore the tattoo he saw hiding behind the reporter’s collar.

“But surely you can’t be serious Warden. I mean, the highest suicide rate in the country? And I don’t mean a few more than the others, we are talking large numbers here”, the reporter said, tapping his thumb against his thigh, “There have been speculations for years, you know that”. Paki “The Tooth Fairy” Lewis, as he had become known in certain secret circles, had waited months to secure this interview and now it was all going to shit. Fifteen years of journalistic experience was no match for the keeper of this prison.

“Yes. I know that. I run this prison well. I keep monsters away from Joe Public, monsters you would not want to burden yourself with my friend”, the warden replied, “and as you know, I am not guilty of anything. That has been proven”, he continued confidently.

Paki turned back as he exited the warden’s office, “Thank you for your time warden”, he said, leaving behind a smile which promised future investigation into the matter. He did not get anything out of the man. It might as well have been a press conference where, as usual, people ramble on in front of a microphone but nothing is ever really disclosed.

The warden securely unpacked his most prized possession, neatly placing it on his desk. He sat back in his fake leather chair, accustomed to the squeaking of its hinges, swallowed two painkillers with cheap whiskey and rubbed the residue from his mustache with thin, scrawny fingers. Fake leather and cheap booze didn’t bother him, as this was not a place for expensive material luxuries. This was a place for gut wrenching cries in the dark of night. For sweat and piss and a controlled level of malnutrition, he thought. After finishing his drink, he lit the first candle.

To be continued…..hopefully

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Paperback Writer – The Beatles

Here’s some lyrical inspiration by The Beatles. I have to be honest and say that I have never heard this song before today.
Click on the link at the end to see the video!
Released in 1966. Its creation was spawned when McCartney was requested to “not make a song about love.”
[Intro]
Paperback writer, paperback writer

[Verse 1]
Dear Sir or Madam, will you read my book?
It took me years to write, will you take a look?
It’s based on a novel by a man named Lear
And I need a job
So I want to be a paperback writer
Paperback writer!

[Verse 2]
It’s a dirty story of a dirty man
And his clinging wife doesn’t understand
His son is working for the Daily Mail
It’s a steady job
But he wants to be a paperback writer
Paperback writer
Paperback writer, paperback writer

[Verse 3]
It’s a thousand pages, give or take a few
I’ll be writing more in a week or two
I could make it longer if you like the style
I can change it ’round
And I want to be a paperback writer
Paperback writer

[Verse 4]
If you really like it you can have the rights
It could make a million for you overnight
If you must return it you can send it here
But I need a break
And I want to be a paperback writer
Paperback writer

[Outro]
Paperback writer, paperback writer
Paperback writer, paperback writer
Paperback writer, paperback writer
Paperback writer, paperback writer
Paperback writer

 

paperback writer – The Beatles  (music video)

Random Page Number 3

I opened The Artist’s Way this morning, and this is what I read:

‘Growth is an erratic forward movement: two steps forward, one step back. Remember that and be very gentle with yourself. A creative recovery is a healing process. You are capable of great things on Tuesday, but on Wednesday you may slide backward. This is normal. Growth occurs in spurts. You will lie dormant sometimes. Do not be discouraged. Think of it as resting.

Practice being kind to yourself in small, concrete ways. Look at your refrigerator. Are you feeding yourself nicely? Do you have socks? An extra set of sheets? What about a new house plant? A thermos for the long drive to work? The expression “God helps those who help themselves” may take on a new and very different meaning. Be alert for support and encouragement from unexpected quarters. Be open to receiving gifts from odd channels: free tickets, a free trip, an offer to buy you dinner, a new-to-you old couch. Practice saying yes to such help.

More than anything else, experiment with solitude. You will need to make a commitment to quiet time. Try to acquire the habit of checking in with yourself. Several times a day, just take a beat, and ask yourself how YOU are feeling. Listen to your answer. Respond kindly. YES, I am asking you to baby yourself. We believe that to be artists we must be tough, cynical and intellectually chilly. Leave that to the critics. As a creative being, you will be more productive when coaxed than when bullied.’

Julia Cameron – The Artist’s Way

I kidnapped my inner editor

Regarding NaNoWriMo – I have hit 12000 and something words. Needless to say I have quite a way to go, but I am chuffed with my progress so far as this is my first REAL attempt at actually completing a novel. I had one small, irritating rock in my shoe though. My inner editor.

Image: tropes.wikia.com

Image: tropes.wikia.com

What I have decided to do is kidnap her, gag her and tie her to a chair. I then proceeded to take her down to the basement (yup, I am strong like that) and place her in the middle of the floor. After that I loaded a shotgun and placed it carefully in front of her, making damn sure she stared straight into the barrel that could instantly end her life. There is a leaking tap in my basement which I am now happy I never fixed, because I hope the incessant dripping of unfiltered water will drive her insane. Right behind the shotgun, I propped a clown doll on a chair, staring straight at her. The basement is dark, except for a dim light bulb clinging on for dear life right above the doll’s head.

Image: creepyblurps.com

Image: creepyblurps.com

I know, it seems harsh, but I was left with no choice. She constantly badgers me about my plot, my characters, my punctuation. Someone had to shut her up. I suggest you do the same, and if you don’t have a basement, mine is free.

Now I shall write in peace.

Happy Writing!

Random Page Number 1

I will every so often be opening a motivational book on a random page and scribble the writings here. This is for when you’re feeling blue, which is a nicer word for “shit” and let’s face it, “shit” is a better word when you’re feeling blue 🙂 So if you so happen to feel down, pick one of my Random Page Numbers.

Much has been said about the simple writings of The Secret, but at the end of the day it does what it was meant to do.

“You are here on this glorious planet, endowed with this wonderful power, to create your life! There are no limits to what you can create for You, because your ability to think is unlimited! But you cannot create other people’s lives for them. You cannot think for them, and if you try to force your opinions on others you will only attract ‘like’ forces to You. So let all others create the life they want. The universe offers ALL things to ALL people through the law of attraction. You have the ability to choose what you want to experience.

Do you want there to be enough for you and for everyone? Then choose that now. There is unlimited supply. There is so much magnificence. So choose for You, because you are the only one who can.

THE SECRET

 

Hah! You expected an image of a sunset right? Or perhaps an old man holding the hand of a just as old woman, smiling life’s troubles away? Those would have worked fine, but perhaps you feel more like an abandoned castle. Maybe you are trying to crawl through the twigs and branches that surround you so you can be seen again. Then the above post is for you 🙂 We are all a little rusty and a little dusty, ain’t nothing wrong with that!

 

My NaNoWriMo Checklist

Courtesy of deviantart.com

Courtesy of deviantart.com

I am fairly new to the writing world and discovered by chance (or, or, I was MEANT to discover) this “thing” called NaNoWriMo. I read some posts by fellow bloggers and soon discovered that this is quite a daunting mission. A mission that has chewed up and spat out some of its best undercover agents. So, naturally, as we do, I decided that I need something daunting in my life.

Can I do it? What do I need? A roof over my head. Check. A computer (do people still even call it that?). Check. An idea. Half check. A constant desire to write with large spurts of procrastination. Check. Guilt for staying home and writing while drones of people scatter to their cubicles every day. Check. Fear of not completing my 50 000 word count due to lack of confidence. Check. A small puppy called TED constantly tugging at my slippers with his shark sharp teeth. Check. Enough coffee to see me through the drought with chocolate chip cookies for dipping. Check. Sunny weather with patches of gloominess and howling winds. Cape Town check.

Can I do it? Damn right I can and so can you. All jokes aside, I am extremely excited and scared and the combination of those two emotions makes us do what we do.

Happy NaNoWriMo to you!

Has your story changed direction / genre midway?

Image: icopal.co.uk

Image: icopal.co.uk

This is interesting. I found Stephen King’s book On Writing unputdownable! The man is a legend. Of course the process for everyone differs, but getting the perspective of an acclaimed writer like himself never hurts. He mentioned something that stuck in my mind, about letting your story and characters evolve on their own. I am fairly new at this, and found it a bit confusing, as my idea was that we create the entire story and all the characters and how everything plays out (plot right?). He talks about how some of his novels ended completely different to the original idea (Misery) which was surprising as I only knew the one ending. Originally Paul Sheldon would not survive, and the cover for Misery’s Return would be made from Paul Sheldon’s skin, displayed somewhere in crazy Annie’s house. So we all know that didn’t happen. He mentions in his book that the characters evolved into something completely different and he ended it as they would end it.

After this glorious book I went back to writing. I am a tad behind schedule, about 2000 words, but getting there, then something happened. As I was describing a certain setting, a completely new story (same characters) entered my mind, almost like a “ah-ha” moment. It would change the genre of my book, but I cannot seem to let it go and consequently this idea has now snowballed in my head. I am feeling a little confused although I have a sneaky suspicion that I should follow my gut (that’s why we have them I suppose).

I guess what I wanted to ask was whether this has ever happened to you? And what did you do about it? Some advice, comments or even a “no you are crazy” will do.

Writer’s Regards 🙂

xxx