Archive | October 11, 2011

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Writing is a very strange thing

Writing is a very strange thing. You are locked in your head with ideas that come out your hands and sometimes surprise you and you wonder where they came from. Writing non-fiction like a blog post is fairly easy and painless – you get an idea and go with it and when it’s done, you’re done and it’s out of your head.

Writing fiction is a whole ‘nother kettle of fish. You have characters that dictate where the story is going and what it will do. Fantasy writer Robin McKinley says she’s a biographer. Characters tell the story and she writes it down. Laurell K. Hamilton often talks on her blog about planning a story and then the characters may or may not want to go there. If she tries to make them they shut up.

My characters when they are short story characters come, tell their story and leave. I write it down and we’re done. A character like BunniHoTep or the Heart Town Witch come and go and give me news bulletins about what they need to do and they disappear back where ever they live when they aren’t whispering in my ear or invading my dreams.

Leonard has his periods where he disappears and then comes back too. He is slower to come and go. Maybe I really am his biographer and he has to go live his life and then come tell me the news and as with most people there are times in your life where nothing to exciting is happening. He changed to 3rd person in the second book for some reason and I guess at some point I will have to re-do the first book. The first book was dictated in first person. I just listen and take it down. He may be in third person because Melly and Greg are more active but when Steed showed up the other night I just laughed when she explained her name. Enough to wake up and Google the Avengers on my phone in the middle of the night.

Several people have told me that someday they want to write lately. I have come to the conclusion you either write or you don’t. You can say you are a writer but if you aren’t writing then you aren’t a writer because if you are the kind of writer I seem to be you have to write to stay sane. If you write then the characters are happy and don’t stage a dream revolution. I’m having a bout of insomnia lately which I seem to dream more intensely during but have a harder time remembering when I wake up.

Anyway, they’re talking and I’m taking it down and grateful that they are talking.

Leonard Book 2 Chapter 13

Chapter 13

Sitting on a hard wooden bench made him yearn for a pillow. His butt and legs were hurting. He was glad they still had quiet time after lunch and then Arts & Crafts. He didn’t think he could deal with a hike at the moment. He noticed Greg was moving as slowly as he was as he ate his weenie beanie soup. He was really enjoying the biscuits too. Oak had said the honey was made from the camp’s bees and if some of them were brave enough they could help harvest the honey later on in the summer. He loved honey and wondered if he was could get up the nerve to face the bees. This batch was orange blossom honey. Oak had said that they moved the bees to different plants during the year and that this was from an orange grove at the bottom of the mountain. It was really good. He supposed that the bees up here were in sage or some other plant that was flowering now. He knew there was a big meadow that was always full of bees. He hoped they were happy there.

After helping clear the tables Greg and he said goodbye to Melly for awhile and went to their cabin for quiet time. He noticed they didn’t call it nap time anymore but that they still had to go to their cabin anyway. Their counselor told them to get on their bunks and that they could talk quietly if they wanted but as soon as Leonard lay down on his bunk he fell asleep.

“Bout time you got here, you’re late!” said Leonard’s grandmother.

“Wuhh?” Leonard thought stupidly. “It’s day time.”

“Well,” his grandmother said, “It’s the first time I’ve been able to get your attention in a while. Camp tiring you out?” she laughed.

Leonard just stared at her. He couldn’t even take a nap in peace.

“I’m not going to bother you too long since you are being tested at the moment and you need what wits you have about you. Just wanted you to know I’m here if you need me or if I think a lesson should be added on to in some fashion. What do you think you’ve learned so far?”

Leonard thought for a moment. “I’ve learned that I may have an earth or air affinity and that archery and horses can really hurt parts of your anatomy.”

“I think you’ve learned more than that when you think about it some. Say ‘hi’ to Melly for me.” And she began to fade away. Just as she almost had disappeared he heard. “Don’t nap too long. You might miss something.” And she was gone.

Leonard woke and just lay there for a bit. Not even naps were safe now. Oh well, and he thought back over the events of the morning. What was that tug on him? And how had he known it was okay to follow it? Were there bad tugs? And how could he know the difference?

Leonard Book 2 Chapter 13

Chapter 13

Sitting on a hard wooden bench made him yearn for a pillow. His butt and legs were hurting. He was glad they still had quiet time after lunch and then Arts & Crafts. He didn’t think he could deal with a hike at the moment. He noticed Greg was moving as slowly as he was as he ate his weenie beanie soup. He was really enjoying the biscuits too. Oak had said the honey was made from the camp’s bees and if some of them were brave enough they could help harvest the honey later on in the summer. He loved honey and wondered if he was could get up the nerve to face the bees. This batch was orange blossom honey. Oak had said that they moved the bees to different plants during the year and that this was from an orange grove at the bottom of the mountain. It was really good. He supposed that the bees up here were in sage or some other plant that was flowering now. He knew there was a big meadow that was always full of bees. He hoped they were happy there.

After helping clear the tables Greg and he said goodbye to Melly for awhile and went to their cabin for quiet time. He noticed they didn’t call it nap time anymore but that they still had to go to their cabin anyway. Their counselor told them to get on their bunks and that they could talk quietly if they wanted but as soon as Leonard lay down on his bunk he fell asleep.

“Bout time you got here, you’re late!” said Leonard’s grandmother.

“Wuhh?” Leonard thought stupidly. “It’s day time.”

“Well,” his grandmother said, “It’s the first time I’ve been able to get your attention in a while. Camp tiring you out?” she laughed.

Leonard just stared at her. He couldn’t even take a nap in peace.

“I’m not going to bother you too long since you are being tested at the moment and you need what wits you have about you. Just wanted you to know I’m here if you need me or if I think a lesson should be added on to in some fashion. What do you think you’ve learned so far?”

Leonard thought for a moment. “I’ve learned that I may have an earth or air affinity and that archery and horses can really hurt parts of your anatomy.”

“I think you’ve learned more than that when you think about it some. Say ‘hi’ to Melly for me.” And she began to fade away. Just as she almost had disappeared he heard. “Don’t nap too long. You might miss something.” And she was gone.

Leonard woke and just lay there for a bit. Not even naps were safe now. Oh well, and he thought back over the events of the morning. What was that tug on him? And how had he known it was okay to follow it? Were there bad tugs? And how could he know the difference?

Leonard Book 2 Chapter 12

Chapter 12

They didn’t have time to think about what had happened because the minute they got back over to the corral the Ranger or Wrangler started speaking.

“Hi Rugrats! I’m Steed and I’m the Head Wrangler.”

“Like a horse?” someone in the back giggled.

“No,” answered Steed, “Believe it or not, I’m a big fan of the Avengers and that would be Miss Steed to you! Steed said looking at the giggler.

“Out here you have to remember that the horses may be bigger than you but you are the one in charge. Today we are just going to meet our new friends and ride around the ring so I can get an idea of your skill level.”

While Steed had been talking Leonard noticed that the horses had turned their heads and ears to Steed and were listening too. Leonard shook his head. ‘They can’t be listening too, can they?’

Steed pointed at one of the girls and led her to a nice looking bay mare with white socks and boosted her onto the mare’s back. Steed was explaining to the girl about holding the reins and how to put her knees and feet. So Leonard started to think about what had happened with Ash. Why was he the only one to feel the pull of someone needing help? How had Ash done it and had he done it on purpose? This camp was getting more and more strange.

He started when Steed called his name and pointed him at a smallish red horse the same colour as his hair. “Her name is Copper” said Steed. “Maybe I should call you Copper too.” She laughed.

“Maybe not.” Said Leonard.

Steed laughed, “Alright. Have you ever ridden before?”

“Not much”, replied Leonard.

“Well, today we are just going to be going in a few circles so don’t worry. Copper is your partner and she needs you to be the boss. I bet you’re an Earth element even with that red hair of yours so we can start from there if not we can try a different way. If you want her to stop you can either pull back on the reins gently or you can visualize stopping and that her feet are still. Try both when we start around the ring. Copper is used to picking up visualizations but make sure you are thinking at her and not Skeeter over there or she’ll stop too and if you do it mentally loud enough everyone stops so use a mental indoor voice, no shouting.” Leonard nodded and sat still on his horse trying to feel the balance.

‘Mental indoor voice? What the heck was a mental indoor voice????’ He was so confused as he sat there waiting for Melly and Greg and the rest. He heard her tell someone not to sit back like a sack of flour and he sat up straighter. Copper turned her head around to look at him with one big brown eye. She looked like she approved.

Finally they were all mounted and Steed led them into the ring, “Okay, who knows what I’m riding?” Steed asked once she got to the center of the ring. No one raised their hand or moved. “I’d like you to meet Emma Peel. She’s a riding mule and don’t let her looks fool you. She’s smarter than a lot of humans. She’s going to be keeping an eye on you too. Right, Emma?” The riding mule nodded her head and everyone laughed. “Now turn you horse to the left and walk.”

Soon she had them trotting around the circle. Melly had been mounted on a big grey horse and Greg was on a black horse with a blaze down his face. Steed had them all the way to trotting when she yelled at them to stop so Leonard yelled ‘Stop!’ in his head. Everyone’s horses stopped abruptly and one kid landed on his butt in the dirt.

Steed looked around the circle until she spotted Leonard and came riding over. “Leonard, I told you indoor voice! Wow, when you yell stop they all did! You’re a little strong there.” She said shaking her head. “Indoor voice, Leonard, indoor voice.”

“How did you know it was me?” Leonard asked and he was now as red as his hair and the mare.

“Copper busted you.” Leonard must have looked puzzled.

“I have them trained to raise their left hoof when someone does that. She’ll bust you every time.” Steed said laughing and turned Emma back to the center of the circle.

“None of you should be laughing.” Steed said as she looked around the circle. “It could just as easily been one of you. He was just the loudest and strongest this time.” Steed was looking at two girls who were whispering to each other. “Shall we start again?”

They continued to trot around the circle and to change directions and they learned to back up and go forward using their knees and soft voices and just as Leonard was starting to feel uncomfortable sitting Steed lead them back out of the ring and showed them how to groom their horses. Leonard wondered if he was going to be able to walk back down the hill to the cabin to get ready for lunch. And tomorrow they had a lunch and nature ride? He groaned to himself and Copper turned her head and coughed at him. It sounded suspiciously like a laugh. “You think that’s funny, do you?”

Leonard continued to comb Copper and day dream until Melly and Greg were ready to do and they limped back down the hill.

Leonard Book 2 Chapter 12

Chapter 12

They didn’t have time to think about what had happened because the minute they got back over to the corral the Ranger or Wrangler started speaking.

“Hi Rugrats! I’m Steed and I’m the Head Wrangler.”

“Like a horse?” someone in the back giggled.

“No,” answered Steed, “Believe it or not, I’m a big fan of the Avengers and that would be Miss Steed to you! Steed said looking at the giggler.

“Out here you have to remember that the horses may be bigger than you but you are the one in charge. Today we are just going to meet our new friends and ride around the ring so I can get an idea of your skill level.”

While Steed had been talking Leonard noticed that the horses had turned their heads and ears to Steed and were listening too. Leonard shook his head. ‘They can’t be listening too, can they?’

Steed pointed at one of the girls and led her to a nice looking bay mare with white socks and boosted her onto the mare’s back. Steed was explaining to the girl about holding the reins and how to put her knees and feet. So Leonard started to think about what had happened with Ash. Why was he the only one to feel the pull of someone needing help? How had Ash done it and had he done it on purpose? This camp was getting more and more strange.

He started when Steed called his name and pointed him at a smallish red horse the same colour as his hair. “Her name is Copper” said Steed. “Maybe I should call you Copper too.” She laughed.

“Maybe not.” Said Leonard.

Steed laughed, “Alright. Have you ever ridden before?”

“Not much”, replied Leonard.

“Well, today we are just going to be going in a few circles so don’t worry. Copper is your partner and she needs you to be the boss. I bet you’re an Earth element even with that red hair of yours so we can start from there if not we can try a different way. If you want her to stop you can either pull back on the reins gently or you can visualize stopping and that her feet are still. Try both when we start around the ring. Copper is used to picking up visualizations but make sure you are thinking at her and not Skeeter over there or she’ll stop too and if you do it mentally loud enough everyone stops so use a mental indoor voice, no shouting.” Leonard nodded and sat still on his horse trying to feel the balance.

‘Mental indoor voice? What the heck was a mental indoor voice????’ He was so confused as he sat there waiting for Melly and Greg and the rest. He heard her tell someone not to sit back like a sack of flour and he sat up straighter. Copper turned her head around to look at him with one big brown eye. She looked like she approved.

Finally they were all mounted and Steed led them into the ring, “Okay, who knows what I’m riding?” Steed asked once she got to the center of the ring. No one raised their hand or moved. “I’d like you to meet Emma Peel. She’s a riding mule and don’t let her looks fool you. She’s smarter than a lot of humans. She’s going to be keeping an eye on you too. Right, Emma?” The riding mule nodded her head and everyone laughed. “Now turn you horse to the left and walk.”

Soon she had them trotting around the circle. Melly had been mounted on a big grey horse and Greg was on a black horse with a blaze down his face. Steed had them all the way to trotting when she yelled at them to stop so Leonard yelled ‘Stop!’ in his head. Everyone’s horses stopped abruptly and one kid landed on his butt in the dirt.

Steed looked around the circle until she spotted Leonard and came riding over. “Leonard, I told you indoor voice! Wow, when you yell stop they all did! You’re a little strong there.” She said shaking her head. “Indoor voice, Leonard, indoor voice.”

“How did you know it was me?” Leonard asked and he was now as red as his hair and the mare.

“Copper busted you.” Leonard must have looked puzzled.

“I have them trained to raise their left hoof when someone does that. She’ll bust you every time.” Steed said laughing and turned Emma back to the center of the circle.

“None of you should be laughing.” Steed said as she looked around the circle. “It could just as easily been one of you. He was just the loudest and strongest this time.” Steed was looking at two girls who were whispering to each other. “Shall we start again?”

They continued to trot around the circle and to change directions and they learned to back up and go forward using their knees and soft voices and just as Leonard was starting to feel uncomfortable sitting Steed lead them back out of the ring and showed them how to groom their horses. Leonard wondered if he was going to be able to walk back down the hill to the cabin to get ready for lunch. And tomorrow they had a lunch and nature ride? He groaned to himself and Copper turned her head and coughed at him. It sounded suspiciously like a laugh. “You think that’s funny, do you?”

Leonard continued to comb Copper and day dream until Melly and Greg were ready to do and they limped back down the hill.