Monday, July 9, 2018

Unpublished stories #OpenBook Blog Hop

Have you written any books or stories that you haven't published? Tell us about them. Do you have plans to release them in the future?

I wrote my first book at the tender age of nineteen. It was a handwritten romantic fantasy and I filled several notebooks. After I finished it, I typed it out. At some point, I made a recording of me reading it. (Saved to cassettes. Several of them.)  And you know what? It stunk. But I was rightfully proud of myself for doing it. I still have the cassettes and typed copy of it somewhere. But there's no way it will ever be released to the world.

After that, I concentrated on my poetry for many years. I have a ton of poems that were never published. Not because they are bad, but because they never found a home. I'm okay with that. (And I'll 'fess up, some of them are bad!)

But a few years back, I had a story floating around in my head that would never become a poem. And I'd heard about National Novel Writing Month, and it sounded like fun. Write 50,000 words in a month? I could do that.

Or not. I got to 49,000 words and ran out of story. So after the month was over, I rewrote it in first person instead of third, added a new scene, and got it over the 50,000 words. But I didn't like the new version, so I rewrote it again- in third person. And it's okay, but after setting it aside for awhile, I realized the plot was too derivative of other stories I read. And there's no saving it. So it's stored away on my hard drive, and there it will stay.

But it got me hooked. I knew I had more stories in me. And I set about writing them.

One is a romance, the other a private eye story. Both have solid plots and likable characters. I haven't given up on them. Occasionally, I'll pull one up and read a selection. Maybe edit a few words. But as I'm concentrating my two series, I can't give them the time they need. Someday.

Although I think my writing is steadily improving, not every story I write is a hit. I set out to write a romance a few ears ago. Solid writing, but it fell flat. I didn't capture the characters emotions, and I knew it before I reached the end. I switched up the plot and now the beginning and the end feel like two different stories. I don't think I'll be able to save that one.

So, for kicks, here's an unedited selection from the second book, titled "Book 2", appropriately enough. It needs work, so excuse any errors.

     The fish joint down the street was open after making some quick repairs, and Ken ate his usual-fried shrimp, coleslaw, and fries, and then sat nursing his beer, watching the other patrons, and flirting with the waitress. Each time a woman with long hair came in, he checked to see if it was Piper. He should have talked to her last night, and told her how he felt. It might have been his last chance.  When the waitress brought him another beer, he drank that one too, and another.
     He wasn’t drunk when he returned to his room, but he was definitely feeling the effects of the alcohol. He knew better, especially on the night before a flight. He would regret it in the morning. But now, he had to go see Piper.
     She was already there, playing a song that seemed filled with sadness. It suited him tonight, he decided, but what was she sad about? He sat beside her and listened to the music and the ocean. He hated to think that it would be his last chance to do so- this trip anyway. He would come back, he thought. If she wants me too, he would come back.
     An ending note and she lowered the flute to her lap, gracefully. “I am here, Mr. Ken Walters,” she said, teasing him.
     “I'm here too, Piper. But I will be leaving tomorrow,” he said sadly.
     “Going home does not make you happy?”
     “It should, I know, but I don’t know where home is anymore.” Together they listened to the music of the waves. “I don’t know if I have had a home since my ex-wife and I got divorced.”
      She did not answer. “Sometimes,” he continued, “When I am with my daughter I get a glimpse of what home means.” The beers must have caught up with him. “Sometimes when I am here with you, I feel the same thing.”
      She had been in the process of raising her flute, and she froze, and then set it back down. “What do you mean by that?”
     He reached over and took held one of her hands between both of his. “I mean I want to get to know you better. I want to know your given name, I want to see your face in the daylight, I want to take you to supper and talk with you for hours."

     She pulled her hand away. “Don’t,” she said. “Don’t.”

Now let's find out what stories the other authors haven't shared with us.

July 9, 2018
Have you written any books or stories that you haven't published? Tell us about them. Do you have plans to release them in the future?

Rules:1. Link your blog to this hop.
2. Notify your following that you are participating in this blog hop.
3. Promise to visit/leave a comment on all participants' blogs.
4. Tweet/or share each person's blog post. Use #OpenBook when tweeting.
5. Put a banner on your blog that you are participating.


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