So, I’ve been writing.
Due to having a one year old son to look after and my current, cramped living conditions, I’m currently struggling to find quality writing time. One of the most important things to a writer is that space where you sit down and block out the world. It doesn’t matter if it’s being sat at your desk in the spare room typing away into the late hours of the night or relaxing in a hammock on a summer’s afternoon putting pen to paper. What matters is how you feel in this space and how much the world leaves you alone.
So when a writer can’t find his or her writing space it can be frustrating. At the moment I’m using my lunch breaks; one hour a day from Monday to Friday. Once I’ve moved in to my new house I’ll hopefully have that space I crave and more time in the evenings. That’s the plan.
Update: yesterday I finished the first draft of LOVE BITE. I’m quite pleased with how it’s turned out but it does still need some work before I release it into the wild. I’m currently typing it up on the lap top (obviously not right now; I’m typing this blog up) so that people don’t have to decipher my mad alien handwriting. With a readable product I’m planning on handing the story over to beta readers. While I wait for their feedback I’m going to work on the final draft of the story which will open the collection. More on that in a later blog post.
Back to LOVE BITE. I wrote this about seven or eight years ago for an online writing group. They’d set up writing challenges with word limits and prompts. We’d have a week to write a sci-fi, fantasy and/or horror story based on these criteria. That week the prompt love (I think it had just been Valentine’s Day). I went with the vampire angle but the 1000 word limit cramped my story. The characters didn’t really do much and, because it was rushed, it didn’t make much sense.
I knew when I was choosing stories for this collection that LOVE BITE was going in. I had always wanted to do more with it. After a week of rewriting the new version the story is about nine times bigger. There are flashbacks, different locations and stronger characters. Personally I think it’s improved and much closer to the story I originally wanted to write way back then.
There’s still work to do. While reading through it as I typed it up I was already making changes. Along with edits made during future drafts it will all have to be ironed out and smoothed over but it’s looking good.
Below is a little chunk from the beginning of the story. Sorry it isn’t too long; it’s still early days and it is a short story after all. Hopefully once the feedback is in and the first major changes have been made I can put a larger piece up.
Her laughter cut through me.
I couldn’t look at her yet. I continued to watch out of the high window across from me. There wasn’t much to see; the basement window was at street level. It was late at night and, of the neighbours’ houses that I could see, only one had glowing windows to show someone else on my street was up as late as me.
Hope they were having as much fun.
The basement was the best place to deal with the situation I had recently found myself in. One of the world’s dirty little secrets.
“What’s up, lover boy?” she said with distain. “I thought you always wanted to be with me. I thought we would be together forever. Your heart, my heart . . .”
That was enough. I couldn’t allow my wedding vows to be butchered by her. I turned from my view, striding across the basement until I was right in front of her. Then I hit her across the face. The force behind the strike nearly toppled her and the dining room chair she was currently tied to.
As I got my breath back the sting started to spread from my fingers to my hands. She just looked up at me and smiled, the wound on her cheek made by my wedding ring already healing.
“Domestic abuse?” she said. “You’re different, you know?” She chuckled.
“Shut up!” I was seething. I returned to the other side of the basement in case I hit her again. I was so angry but also afraid that I might start hitting her and never stop. I looked back out at the quiet world at the end of the drive.
“It’s okay,” she said. “I like it rough.”
“Shut the hell up, Lorna,” I muttered. I played with the wooden stake in my hand, making sure she could see it.
“Oh come on honey,” said Lorna. “If you had the balls to stick that thing in me I’d be ash by now.”
She talked like a spoilt little teenager who hadn’t got her way and was determined to spend the rest of the night being as annoying as possible. It was working.
“If you keep pushing my buttons then I promise this thing will go straight through your rotten, twisted heart before you can scream.”
“I’ll push your buttons sweetie.” That smile again. “Just undo a couple of my buttons and I’ll get you all worked up. Then you can plunge your other stake into me all night long. I know you want to. I’ll let you do all those kinky things you were always asking to try.” She licked her lips. “Come on, untie me. You’re not ready to say goodbye to your wife yet.”
No, I thought to myself. No I wasn’t.
Please let me know what you thought in the comments. While nice comments are welcome criticism will help fix any problems. Again, I apologise for its lack of length.
Anyway, I’m off. I have a short story to write up.
See you in seven.