Otherworldly Escape   Leave a comment

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Credit: The Speculative Scotsman, May 2012

Today I attended a seminar on what could have been a rather interesting subject.  In fact, I found the keynote speech to be so compelling that the workshops following that speech should have been equally interesting.  My friends joined me, and we found seats in a darkened room, preparing to pay close attention to the speaker and her presentation.

And then?

Not much.  I blanked out.  So did one of my friends.  Perhaps the subject was presented too broadly, or the speaker lacked the confidence to deliver her speech with conviction.  But anyway, there we were, passing notes via our text messages, on a wide variety of commentary.  Were we bad?  Possibly.  Were we wasting our time?  Never.

See, it’s times like these that I take advantage of a darkened room and allow my thoughts to drift constructively.  I spend this time constructing plot lines and allowing my imagination to transport me to places where I normally struggle when planted firmly in front of my computer.  It’s my little trip to the unknown, where I explore my inner world in search of an exemplary adjective.  I’m writing a book, actually the second in a series.  I know exactly what’s going to happen in this second entry, start to finish.  No plodding plots here, folks.  That’s all squared away.

All the characters have received their job assignments.  They stand waiting patiently in the wings, looking for their cues to enter the stage of pages wherein their part comes alive, ready to jump into action.  Unfortunately, they have no way of articulating it.  Why?  Because I’m still wrenching out the exact prose their fictional lips are about to utter.

I’ve developed my craft with wit, a hint of sarcasm and a touch of irony, laced it with suspense and a hint of romance (just a tidbit, mind you, because let’s face it, characters need love too).  But I simply can’t bring myself to compose dull, lifeless conversation like this:

“What’s going on, Rachel?”

“Don’t worry about it, Pete.”

Ugh.

Those two sentences are my sculptor’s clay.  Those words are what the characters are thinking, but I want them to deliver them so the reader’s clinging to the book with sweaty palms, anxious to turn the page in the hopes that Pete and Rachel are going to…going to…going to…oh, my God! is THAT what’s up???

So as I shivered in the refrigerated, darkened conference room, I leaned back in my leatherette chair and stared into the PowerPoint presentation.  I allowed Pete and Rachel to swallow me whole, as they wrestled with that dilemma that floated beyond their reach.

Here’s what came of it:

Pete glanced at Rachel, worried.  “And what’s your plan, if I might ask?”

“You need not concern yourself.  I’ll probably slug my fist into a few protesting jaws and guts, but beyond that, nothing worse,” she said, smiling assuredly.

Oh, there’s more, but you’ll have to find out later.

 

 

Posted July 29, 2014 by seleneymoon in Sci-Fi, science fiction

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