Thursday, January 11, 2007

Let 'er Rip!

I read this post this morning, and liked the mention of how Karin Tabke wrote "rip it up" on the works she submitted for critiquing.

One of the things I've been working on over the last year (and will continue into this year) is allowing myself to make mistakes and look foolish. After all, that's going to happen anyway, so why be so uptight about it?

So without further ado, here's part of the opening scenes of a WIP. It isn't the type of thing my CPs like to read, so I though t I'd post it here and let people rip it up if they want. (And if you want to humiliate me privately instead of publicly, you can always email me to say it should just R.I.P. I won't report you for violations to the TOS. Maybe. :)

Oh, and don't comment on the format - I know it's off - technical difficulties again. Blogger keeps freezing every two seconds and I don't have the patience to fix it.


“Is the old bat dead yet?”

“Not yet, and stay out of the ‘fridge, I’m cooking dinner.” Kitty glared at her brother and added a bit of salt to a pan.

“I think we should go up and kill her now. Put the leathery old beast out of her misery.”

“Just leave her alone, Bart.”

“How long has she been in that attic, anyway?”

“A few months.”

“She’ll probably starve to death if you don’t get her out of there.”

“I’ve tried, but she won’t move or eat anything I take her. I tried mice, bugs--all the things bats usually eat.”

“Are you sure she’s even still alive? It smells pretty bad in here.”

“You say that every time I cook.”

“Well, she’ll probably outlive all of us. Evil never dies.”

“Don’t talk about your mother that way!”

“She’s your mother too.” Bart shrugged and opened the pantry. “Maybe Mary can talk to her when she gets here,” he suggested, pulling a box of cookies from a shelf. “She’s the only one mom ever listened to.”


The colorful Christmas lights on the gray tenements made Mary sad. The dead woman next to her probably should have made her sad, but Mary didn’t spare her a thought. No, it was the cheerful lights illuminating the misery of their surroundings that she found depressing.

As for as the other woman, Mary hadn’t bothered to speak to her when they’d boarded the commuter train; didn’t ask what plans she had for the holiday; didn’t exchange names.

The woman was merely a job, and a job done well.

After they’d taken their seats and shown their tickets to the conductor, Mary quietly slipped the hypodermic into the woman’s neck, unnoticed by crew or passengers. So efficient was she that no one even noticed when she switched the shopping bags tucked under their seats.

Mary looked down at the shiny gold bags under her feet, smiled and nodded. She’d take some of that money to buy razor blades for mom’s stocking.


Stewart Sternberg said...

seThis is a disturbing little ditty. This is sort of like Quentin Tarrentino on acid.

I look forward to seeing what your intent is here. It's a nice set up. First you deliver fric and frac with mom upstairs..and then hit the reader between the eyes with Mary.

Good beginning.

Kate S said...

"Quentin Tarrentino on acid"

LOL! Oh my goodness, I'm not sure if that's a compliment or not!

Thanks, Stewart. To be honest, I'm not entirely sure yet what my intent. I've just been getting these odd little scenes in my head over the past few months, and finally decided to put them together.

The bit with Mary was actually the first one I had--it came to me on a train. Some weeks later, "is the old bat dead yet" was just a line that slipped through on some suffering synapse and I jotted it down. The idea to put them together came later. A couple of weeks ago I was on a plane and saw the ending of this as well as a few middle scenes very clearly.

Little by little, I'm starting to sense what everyone is up to and where they're going, though not as much as I'd like. Nevertheless, I figure I'll "pants" it and see what happens. I already really like the characters and their backgrounds--what they've revealed to me so far. Now if they'd just stop whispering suggestions to me while I work...