What’s Up Wednesday is a weekly meme geared toward readers and writers, allowing us to touch base with blog friends and let them know what’s up. Should you wish to join us, you will find the link widget at the bottom Jaime’s post. We really hope you will take part!
What I’m Reading
I’m still working my way through The Casual Vacancy. I also started reading Beowulf, which has been challenging so far, plus the translator converted it into prose, which has been tripping me up since I know it was originally a poem. Then the library kindle emailed me to remind me Mila 2.0 and The Elite are due Wednesday, so I had to abandon Beowulf for the time being to read those. I really liked Mila 2.0 – it had lots of action, plus Mila was a really interesting and relatable character. Now I’m 25 pages into The Elite and already questioning my decision to read it. We’ll see if it’s as addictive as The Selection…
What I’m Writing
Time to check in for Ready. Set. Write! As a reminder, my goals are here. As of Tuesday (which is when I’m writing this post), I’ve
- polished up 19 chapters of SHARDS, which I think was 6 or 7 for the week. I’m past the halfway point in the MS now, and I should be able to make good progress the rest of this week since I stupidly forgot to change my availability at my retail job before this week’s schedule was posted and I didn’t get very many hours…
- rewrote Chapter 2 of FIRE and sent it to Ifeoma, Liz, and Laura. This weekend I’m going to rewrite Chapter 3 and then send it to them.
Also, Alison and Tracey both did that snippet thing that’s going around – Search the words “moment,” “forever,” “time,” or the like in your writing, pick your favorite chunk, post on your blog, and tag others! – and they tagged everyone, so I figured it was a good way to choose a snippet to share this week.
This snippet is from Chapter 1 of FIRE, so all you need to know is the main character, Aimee’s, mother is about to be burned at the stake as a witch (she says with a gleeful smile on her face).
At precisely noon, Justice Keane McCormack, a frequent visitor of my mother’s dining room table, springs up onto the scaffold, and the crowd goes silent for the first time all day. I swallow bile and Erin digs her fingernails into my arm, because both of us know what’s coming next.
It’s the beginning of the end.
The last thing either of us wants to do is watch this, but we have no choice. We have to prove we aren’t our mother’s daughters, and in order to do that, we can show no weakness as she’s condemned. So neither of us looks away as Justice McCormack opens his mouth and spouts nothing but lies.
“We are here on this glorious spring day to witness the execution of a traitor.” His voice is sonorous, the type of voice I’m sure would’ve drowned out the crowd no matter how loud they were. It is the voice that frequently told Erin and me stories about our father, his best friend.
And now it’s the voice that will condemn our mother to death.
The Justice pauses to let the crowd cheer. When they’re more or less silent again, he says, “I now present the prisoner.”
Across the square from where we sit, the crowd parts. I can’t see her yet, but I know they part for my mother, being led out of the Justice Building – housing our courts, legal offices, and cells – escorted by at least a score of guards. I imagine how terrified these guards must be, accompanying a convicted mage to her death.
I wonder if my mother is scared. She’s had plenty of time to think about how she’s going to die, to imagine the flames caressing her skin, the smoke choking her. I read in a book that the smoke will suffocate her – when she dies, it will be the smoke’s doing, not the fire’s. I wonder if that thought kept her up last night, like it did to me.
I wonder if she regrets what she did.
I’m not sure I regret what I did.
I also tag everyone. Because I don’t play favorites.
What Inspires Me Right Now
The writing community. Without the writing community, I probably would still have pieces of stories floating around on my computer instead of complete MSs.
Without my friend Anna and the Bellingham WriMos, I probably wouldn’t have finished that first MS my freshman year of college, the one I haven’t looked at since but was important in proving I could write a book.
Without FictionPress, I probably wouldn’t have had the courage to show other people my writing. Without The Write Away and all those ladies demanding more of that first awful draft of SHARDS, I probably wouldn’t have finished it. Without everyone on Twitter cheering me on, I probably wouldn’t have written two more drafts after that. Without Ready. Set. Write!, who knows when I’d have my final draft of SHARDS done? (Answer: probably way later than the end of June.) Without #WriteClub, I’d probably have a social life on Friday nights. (But more likely I’d end up watching terrible TV in my pajamas.) Without my CPs demanding to see more of SHARDS and FIRE, I’d probably be spending my summer sitting around in my PJs clearing my Netflix queue.
Basically, I wouldn’t be anywhere close to where I am right now. So thank you all for that.
What Else I’m Up To
On Friday I got coffee with a friend who was graduating, and we spent three hours nerding out and talking about life and sitting there so long I’m surprised we didn’t get kicked out. (Actually, I’m not surprised. I spend way too much time in that coffeehouse. They know me by name and always tell me when they’ve got new mochas, which is important.)
On Saturday my roommate and I went to
stare at Henry Cavill in spandex for two hours see Man of Steel. It wasn’t great, but it wasn’t as bad as a lot of people on Twitter said it was. Superman and Lois had zero chemistry and the dialogue was cringe-worthy, but I liked the spin they put on Superman’s origin story, it was very good visually (and yes, I’m talking about more than just Henry Cavill), and Henry Cavill was very nice to look at. Also, Hans Zimmer did the score, and I’m convinced he can do no wrong.
And then there’s the usual: world domination, one new Divergent reader at a time. My sister read it in a day (and sent me many, many all caps texts), and now my dad’s reading it. I need all of my fingers and several of my toes to count how many people have read that book because of me, most of those people being students. Hooray, literacy!
What have you been up to this week?