A Post about Pests: Ants, Fleas and Feast-Eating Bugs. An excerpt from my unpublished novel. (yet-to-be published)

via Daily Prompt: Pest

“Why wouldn’t I goof on the a “narcissistic ant land?” questions Franklin. “I believe that it was me who coined the phrase back in year one or two of the five it has taken to locate Skylar and rescue Memphis within the Monkey Puzzle.” Still though, is the lingering air that surrounds that former laptop. Mysteriously, one late afternoon, the Snow Leopard was swiftly ejected from Skylar’s apartment through the living room window. The lesson that Skylar took from this curious event is to never use any technological device without making sure all windows are shut first.  “Franklin, there are too many Dave’s,” confides Skylar. “I thought I had the tally up to four, but four might only account for all the various names that one of these Dave’s carries.” Skylar’s not sure if summing up all the Dave’s even matters. She would still like to note that the Dave count did reach at least six at one point.

Currently, Skylar is stuck someone in the middle of a forced play here on the East in the mix of some unknown game. “I am done being forced into games,” she says to Franklin. Her memory jolts back to the years before. Spinning, her brain beats over how things must have played out when she lived out in the City West. Any thoughts of her former laptop are long gone. “Someone obviously thought it would be better served in their possession,” says Skylar thinking to herself.  “Maybe if Franklin had been familiar with the white, windowless cinder-block bar she frequented when she lived out there? Maybe then he would have been the one to bump into us?” She is referring to Saint Stephen. “I was often there having a quiet drink alone during the week,” she thought and then smiled to herself. “I think I used to twirl chaos with my words for mere amusement.” She shakes her head thinking back. “Franklin knows how I loved to dance. He is also too familiar with my habit of stirring up chaos.”

On a hot night during baseball season, the dark white bar would pump live music out the back door and into the alley. Attending live music events and drinking was something that Franklin and Skylar had in common. However, it wasn’t baseball season and it wasn’t Franklin that bumped into Skylar and Stephen that one quiet weekday night. Instead, the odd couple were interrupted by Skylar’s old and dear friend, Kat. She slid right in between the off-beat pair and her odd expression landed in between their bar stools. “Would you like to join us for a drink?” asked Stephen. Kat didn’t answer. She was doing her best to maintain her composure despite her outward appearance. Skylar could sense that her dear old friend was internally freaking out. Impatient, irritated, and red with anger, Kat bolted towards the rail system without even a goodbye. Reflecting, Skylar turns towards Franklin, and says just this,

“My, what an awkward flea.”

Yo, Word, Alright.

“We shouldn’t be left anywhere ever again to discuss boating or shipping.”

It’s a new year now here in the Eastern City and Skylar does not intend to go on repeating the past. “There will be no more feast-eating bugs,” she states. “We got it,” say Alondra and Chiba. “The season of feast-eating bugs will not be repeated,” they say reassuringly. “SO, what won’t be built in a day?” Skylar asks as she stares down the two strong women. “Remington will not be built in a day,” she tells them. “And why do you two think that might be?” Before they have a chance to answer, Skylar says strongly, “Remington will not be built in a day because it is utter lunacy wasting time trying to figure out how to build any man into a day.” Unfortunately for Skylar, she is sure that utter lunacy is precisely what Alondra strives for on the daily.

 

 

 

Tightening up my dialogue-some things I’ve learned

So, I have been working through my writing, tightening up and “fixing” the dialogue. I’ve been having problems finding other words (the right verb) for “says” or “explains” or “thinks.” I read through some things online and here’s what I found.

There is something called “constructed speech dialogue”, “unintroduced” dialogue, and direct and indirect speech.

I didn’t even consider the type of dialogue that appears like this within the text: and he was like, “did I do this correctly?” Or I’m like, “are you ready to go?” This type of dialogue is represented by this formula: “be” + “like” = “say”  it represents the kind of thing a character would be saying or thinking. I think I used to talk this way. For all I know I still do.

My writing over these last 5 years has been an adventure. Putting together and sorting out certain portions of it and constructing the dialogue is tedious but important for the characters to portray emotions and visualize the setting/situation for the reader.

Thinking about my education and how my writing is going

I have two advanced degrees: a Bachelor of Science in the physical sciences and a Masters in a social science. After those 4 years of lots of math, physics and all the other coursework dealing with integrating science and technology, I worked for roughly six years in laboratory science-biotech and environmental mainly.   For me it was a dramatic move into graduate school for Library and Information science.

The most difficult part of graduate school the first year was remembering that I could write at all after years of lab reports. I did pretty well once I got into it. I was always good at reading and writing.

Now, Six years after graduate school, I finally have the time to compile this “original piece of work” I have been working on for the last five years in between all the dead-end jobs I have held. It’s definitely fiction and I am labeling it as a manuscript(I think that’s the correct term), but I suppose it will eventually be a novel. Published or not, I am in search of a sense of accomplishment.

Look for my next blog/entry about dialogue.

all I see is red pen!

doing some editing the old-fashioned way first – printed pages completed first, found two red pens (in case one runs out of ink) and am toughing through it. Anyone have any other advice? Thus far, I wish that I had printed it out in a larger font. I will have to find some music to listen to that is not very distracting.

Healing: Living in “writer’s block” means I have to draw when forced to break from writing.

Promise to any of you readers, blog followers or supportive friends: I won’t be posting that much of my artwork. However, I would like to mention how supportive my husband has been through all of this. He knows of my previous anger issues, so here’s a couple pieces I drew with a fist in the air.

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Better a fist on paper than to have mine go crashing through a wall or a window.

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Shuffling through it again…No “writer’s block” here. Read, Re-read, Edit & Organize

I am always in need of finding my focus – Looks like my writing plan started with some Alice in Chains “Down in a Hole” this weekend. Now all I need to do is set aside the time to read, reread, edit and organize. I don’t like to shuffle music.

And one day later, still haven’t had a chance to block some time for myself. Yesterday it was Alice in Chains and today it’s The Shins, “Shuts too Narrow”. Will find the time to write today.