Tag Archives: Novel

Retreat Goals

Despite the turmoil of the months leading up to this weekend, my goal in going is to get away from the overwhelming every day – to focus on some of my own writing. I brought with me several projects to follow up on, which will include editing, designing, formatting. I hope to finish a few things so that I might move past this block that haunts me. Another novel to be done – An Italian Son – and my first kid’s picture book needs drawings. Can I determine the style I want to use for the illustrations?

I have also a company project in tow that I want to finish editing – it is in layout format so working through the reading achieves more than one end.

I am also hoping there’s a poem or two to be had – I will try to force the stoppage in order to free some words into a composition I will be happy with – I used to be so connected to poetry. What happened? Did it abandon me or did I abandon it? I know it’s not lost forever… just temporarily misplaced.

My camera is also my constant companion – there is always visual inspiration around, especially here: the birds are welcome subjects, trees and greenery, wood structures and pathways, squirrels and other wildlife supposedly around out there somewhere. If only the rain would let up. I will go out for walks to get some fresh air and connect with nature. It’s cooler, though, and cool, wet weather is not my friend.

Sidebar…

I wrote my goals at the beginning of the weekend – it was gloomy when we arrived but soon gave way to rain for the past couple of days. We definitely need the rain and would happily send it up north to the forests. In truth, we couldn’t have a fire inside in the fireplace the first couple of nights because of the dryness here at the Creek. Finally, the rain gauge showed enough moisture accumulation and sharing alongside the fire was a possibility the last two nights of our stay. I love warm spring weather, though… Sunshine – the one from the sky – why have you abandoned us this weekend?

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An Elizabethan Affair – WIP excerpt

EA break insert

The window panes lit up like daylight and seconds later the thunder sounded. The storm was almost overhead. Mila pulled the windows shut as large drops pelted the outside shale and began to streak the glass with streaming rivulets. She lit candles around the big room and faced her guests.

“There. Let it rain. We are safe and sound inside and will not be interrupted.” A crack of light creased the sky its boom simultaneous this time. “I said. We will not be interrupted and besides, it’s supposed to be clear by midnight. We could take a stroll in the gardens and enjoy the full moon.” Elizabeth had been watching the storm from the window, at a safe distance, but close enough to see the blackened sky showed no sign of letting up.

“I would not count on that, by the looks of things outside.”

“Ah, well, we shall see later. Anyway, like I said we are safe and sound inside.” Mila touched her friend’s arm, inviting her to join the warmth of conversation at the fireside. Elizabeth did not move but remained focused on the outside blackness. She traced a raindrop on its course down the window pane. She smoothed her linen skirt and absentmindedly plucked at a loose thread on the hem of her cashmere sweater. Her reflection stared back at her from the night.

“Elizabeth?” “I feel out of place, Mila.”

“Aw, sweetie, no, you have a place here. Everyone adores you.”

“Thank you, for this Mila. I know I can be an old stick in the mud…” her hand smoothed a loose strand of hair and pushed it behind her ear before she continued. “No, I mean I really feel out of place. I should have dressed the part. Or, at least, some part.” She turned to faced Mila and looked over the group of guests milling about the ornately decorated sitting room. “Everyone is so… there.”

“Come with me. I have just the thing to make you feel right at home.”

EA break insert

“Come sit, beside me.” Mila patted the seat beside her.

A hush fell over the room as Elizabeth entered through the French doors. She paused, feeling a little self conscious, although, she should not have worried. Her trim body filled in the satin navy and cream striped skirt and bodice as if it were made for her. The short navy jacket covered her arms and shoulders stopping above the tightly draw waist. Cream colored lace as the end of the sleeves and the collar accentuated her own fair toned skin. She had taken her hair down from the tightly drawn ponytail and clipped it loosely at the back of her neck. She felt a warm blush creep up to her cheeks as she sensed the men’s approving looks.

Edmund moved toward her with his hand extended.

“Come, my dear.” He escorted her to Mila’s side. “You must sit here for now, but soon I want you by my side.” He bowed his head slightly, the knowing smile merely more than a curl at the corner of his lips.

“Are you there, now?” Mila leaned close and added. “Wow. I am so glad Rosalind couldn’t make it. That dress looks absolutely fab on you. It’s like it was made for you.”

Elizabeth smile was unsure, but she appreciated the compliment. She rested her hands in her lap, feeling a little more at ease.

EA break insert

 

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Me and NaNO

Wow, when the cosmos says you shouldn’t or will not do something, it really means it! Or at least it makes the effort somewhat difficult by overwhelming you with emotional grief and consuming you with administrative turmoil. This year will go down as the worst and will probably hamper any future attempts for the so-called month of writing frenzy. I think I will concentrate my efforts elsewhere because giving up totally is not something I am willing to give in to – writing is in my very soul and it is spurred by my heartfelt renderings. My thoughts stray back to 2009 when I had a partially developed idea in place for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). I remember completing 2009 with a novel entitled An Italian Son even though my sister was diagnosed with breast cancer.

In 2010, I assumed the best for my writing despite all that was going on in my sister’s life. I planned early the premise of the 2010 novel and let it sit awaiting the November 1st start. Power Struggle came out of that 2010 effort although it was composed with pure emotional adrenalin. My father had an abdominal aortic aneurism (triple a) late October while at work. He wasn’t given much chance of survival but he did. Although he was in hospital for the onslaught of the writing craziness, I remember writing the first chapter on a small note pad while sitting in his hospital room.

In 2011, I registered on my NaNoWriMo account to assume the position but did not complete my attempt. I was working on my WIP, An Elizabethan Affair, and although it is one so dear to my heart that finishing is an ongoing dream, I could not find the time to finish the whole 50,000 words. I added to the work and in that I found comfort – it will be finished when the time is right for it keeps me in touch with my true spirit. My love for Shakespeare and his work guide me toward that inevitable success.

This year is another story altogether and perhaps my inner spirit is severed with regard to this year’s attempt at writing the sequels to my YA adventure, A Journey of Brothers. Publishing the ebook this summer via #smashwords is bittersweet. My mom loved this story and helped with editing and proof reading and event wanted so much to see it in film; I told her of my plan to write the follow ups to my novella this month. I would continue the story and follow the brothers – Aaslan, Udmurt, and Prince Haidar to fulfill each of their lives through the journey of the women, Aisha and Saharra. I dedicated the first book to my mom and although she did not see a print copy of this book she was the reason I published it first in the means I was able.

She passed away on November 3rd. If time allows I will begin this year’s NaNoWriMo quest in her honor – it will be delayed and sporadic.

I will not be pursuing future events but endeavor to devote time throughout the year to my writing as we answer the inner call as writers. At least that’s how I’m feeling right at this moment.

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Sonnet V – Not of My Time

There was a time you were unknown to me

We walked our separate paths upon the earth

Then life presented chance discovery

and need displayed at face our meeting’s worth

Below the surface boiled submissive fire

Tempting us to warm to nature’s draw

You appeared despite your oath’s desire

Soothing o’er my wounds that still bled raw

As two forbid complete within one bed

Although our draw and writ would argue so

Brief encounters filled with cautious dread

Midnight hour tolled and soon must go

Not free to roam, you travel guarded way

Content with offered tryst, I’m held at bay

(c) Linda J. Pedley  (from Elizabethan Affair – soon to be released novel)

Victorian artist ~ William Powell Frith

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Victorian Artist~ William Powell Frith ~ “Lovers” – 1855

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Preparing the Novel

So it’s been 2 months since my frantic encounter with NaNoWriMo and Marco’s story remained in my head and my heart ever since. His editing was shelved for some time in order to grasp again the reality of my writer’s life with all the other things I must do and catch up on. Christmas went by in its usual haste, desperately dragging upon every moment up until the day… then it’s already a month to the day over and done with. Somewhere in there we raised a glass or two (or three) to the New Year, heralding hope and prosperity with renewed vigor and resolution. I have not ventured far nor walked many a mile in my writer’s shoes for lack of support due to a pulled knee and a snowy disposition, weather-wise. I have, however, blogged to the moon and back in all its shining glory while not even leaving the comfort of this very chair. I managed to cover topic and story of chance and choosing – posting opinion and articles professing encouragement and love and passion as I promised to do.

Today I worked further on the editing of said novel and will again breathe life into Marco as we prepare to workshop our novel ideas. Some of us have gathered in the past to visit this topic and we again take up the meeting to help out those who have a project underway. This will allow us time to work with fellow novelists who will co-conspire plot and character.  I am looking forward to the review and critique of my work so I might know if it has a chance of some kind in the big world of readers. I do hope to find out the truth – does it hold promise or is it just hollow words?

It is not a story like my Elizabethan Affair for it does not hold the rapture of romance in the 16th century nor does it have the naive heroine or the poetic hero in Shakespeare. It does though, speak of the Italian passion for love and family. Both are mixed with a bit a humor and suspense to shake up and punctuate the warm fuzzies of emotional overtures.

No matter its strength, it is a story grown within me and held until mature enough to leave. It is now on paper and just needs a little help to dress up and go out to meet the world. The rewrites are now left to the processing of the analytical left brain – the nurturing right brain struggles, left to just watch as the baby now turns into a grown man-uscript.

...I must read aloud, the cat’s breath is heavy in the quiet of my room. He’s making a little wheezing sounds that are rather odd but soon I drown them out with my own voice and when the furnace kicks in there is more background noise to accompany the clicking of the keys on the keyboard… The night draws near to the time of sleep but the stories will still dance and those are called dreams.

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Nulla dies sine linea

“No day without a line.”

This is the quote that sticks in my mind to remind me of the minimum commitment a writer must make – write something everyday. Very basic and simple although in our busy life sometimes even this small feat is an effort. It is, though, an effort we must make to ourselves in order to fulfill our passion if we dream of being a published author. If you have signed up to participate in the November novel writing mania, you have chosen to add to your life the effort of writing at least 50,000 words by the end of the month. It is our passion for the written word that drives us to take on this monumental task in addition to whatever other writing we do on a regular basis.

Typing fingers

Assign a time to write. Take it and make it your own.

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The Day Before

It is yet to be titled but I will be working on an idea that has grown enough to become its own story. I will attempt to put on paper this novel idea over the next 30 days. It is my intent to keep up with my journal entries, my various blogs and other writing pieces necessary to participate in my writer’s life, as per usual…as well as contribute the 50,000+ words for the National Novel Writing Month participatory commitment. I intend to do it. I intend to do it all. In the end, after all is said and done, written and counted, this endeavor will provide me with the boost I need to edit and rewrite and perhaps have that first novel draft out there for consideration.

My first baby – my first novel – is still in the works and is my passion…my love. But it stalled me, or rather, I stalled it and I promise I will come back to it with a fiery vengeance once this “other novel” is out of me. It will be like “taking a break” so I can return with renewed concentration on An Elizabethan Affair. Nothing can compare to my love for William and the romanticism of a time travel romance back to the days of “wherefore art thou…” but Marco’s story must be told, because alas, poor Marco needs my help to figure out the deception that befalls him disguised as love, opportunity and old Italian family influence.

It is exciting. It is daunting. It is probably maniacal given an already too busy life. It’s my dream. The writer’s life is calling.

The Bard

"Who will believe my verse in time to come..."

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