Friday, June 21, 2013

An update....and a taste of my rough draft...

Well...I need to apologize. It's been forever since I've written a post on here! One reason is that I've been busily trying to reach my goal of a finished rough draft by the end of this month. I'm on track to meet that goal...however I think the draft is going to be a bit rougher than I had originally hoped. There are still many transitions and chapter endings that need to be rewritten or developed....but I guess that's why they call it a rough draft.

I've had many days of frustration as well as moments of victory and joy along the way. My rough draft still has a little ways to go and so I am still feverishly working on it whenever I get the chance.

I've both loved and hated having this goal. I know I need to set goals and reach those goals in order to accomplish a project like this. However I also have chafed under the time constraints. I feel that sometimes it sucks the fun out of the project when I feel the goal pressing down on me and a "deadline" approaching and I'm just rattling off words as fast as I can to fill space. Hmmmm...that's definitely been a struggle for me lately.

I have also decided to write each character in the first person, present tense...which requires some rewriting as well. (They were first person, but not present tense.) I think the present tense is much better for what I'm trying to do and much more vivid and I'm enjoying the change as I write.

Many people have been asking to get a taste of the novel.'s a little snippet from the rough draft I am working on. This is my character's (Benaiah's) mother, Serah, talking as her son leaves to join King Saul's standing army. Any thoughts, suggestions or comments are welcome!

I lean against the doorway my fingers around the door frame my cheek pressed up against the rough wood. I watch my Benaiah, my dear son, walking away. We had just said goodbye. He had packed his things and I had given him some supplies I had prepared for his journey. This is the moment I have dreaded the most. I can still feel his embrace, his warm arms that had been wrapped around me a moment before. His words of tender love still sit soft in my ear as I watch him walking away. How strong! How manly he looks as he goes off on his new adventure. His heart is set on war and my heart writhes in pain. I can’t hold back the flood of tears that well up in my eyes. It is a relief to be alone in this moment. Crying is not something I allow myself to do, especially not around Beriah or the rest of the family. I hate being vulnerable and weak and Beriah does not approve of such emotional displays.  I try so hard to arrange my life so that I do not need anything from anyone—ever! Yet this is breaking through all my resolve. My heart leaves with my son. Without him I am sure that loneliness will break my heart. He doesn’t know how badly I want to hold him back. I want him to stay. I know if I had begged him, he might have listened. There was a chance. Our bond is strong. Stronger than most mothers had with their sons at his age. I might have doused the fire in his eyes. I might have snuffed out his burning enthusiasm and excitement. Then he might have stayed. I could have stirred the conflict of desire and duty that often raged in his mind, but really I know I couldn’t have done that to him. I understand how he aches for this change. I know he needs to go. I won’t stand in his way or hang on clinging like a child to his robe. But watching him go, my ancient wounds tear open fresh. The old pain floods my mind again. He is the son of my woe. Yet I love him so. Unbidden, the memories tear through my mind like jagged flashes of lightning. Terrible, unsettling weakness blows through me like a cold, violent wind. I step back again inside the house and sink to my knees on the dirt, tears streaking down my face…skittering down into the dusty floor, shattering into tiny balls of mud.  I feel my body trembling. The images come again, so fresh and raw and real, as if they happened yesterday instead of years before.


  1. I like it! I want to know more, so it's suspenseful and well-paced. Can the past perfect tenses be rewritten as just past tense, and still keep the meaning intact? The helping verbs seem to interrupt the lyrical flow of your narrative. Overall, really well done! Can't wait to read more.

  2. Thanks! As I was reading through it again, some of those past perfects did seem a bit clunky. It will need some reworking to smooth it out. Thanks for the suggestions!