Friday, December 10, 2010

Fiction Friday: NaNoWriMo Sample, Part 1

My first NaNoWriMo experience, otherwise known as my return to fiction, was a beautiful mix of creativity and pain. I failed to reach the 50,000 word goal with my novel writing, but I did complete approximately 19,000 words. Pointless drivel, in my opinion, but perhaps I'll let you be the judge. Here's a small snippet of my would-be novel...

The house was like a museum. A museum of pain. Heartache, limitations. Everything preserved in time – not only the furniture and d├ęcor, but the emotions. The opinions about every painting on the wall, the judgments of every bedspread, the guilt over the smudges on the wall and cracks in the counter. The details of how the house looked before this iteration. Before the new dining room and family room had been added. Before the bathroom had new linoleum. Every day that was lived in that house was sealed in time. Humming with history. 30 years of memories and it was so loud, it nearly deafened Calista as she walked through the rooms like a ghost.

Calista hadn’t lived in this house for a long time. As soon as a driver’s license had afforded her precious freedom, she’d begun her escape. College in another state, then work. She hadn’t lived here since high school. She’d gone from being a resident to a holiday visitor, never staying longer than week in its clutches.

She’d moved on. Yet now, standing in the room that used to be hers, the bulletin board on which she’d tacked calendars and Ice Capades tickets still hanging on the wall, she realized that she never had. The house mirrored her every move. Contained it, held it until this moment, when she could see that the house had always been with her, even when she was away. It had always been home. But now what would it be? She had no idea.

Calista heard the garage door open with an all too familiar moan. Her heart choked with grief as her mind flew to the inevitable, irrational thought. It’s Dad! The garage door rattled to a halt and Calista began to cry. Her father could never open that garage door again. He was gone. The sound had been just another memory in this house circling her throat like a vice. She had to get out.

She walked out of her room, through the kitchen, and toward the back door just as her sister Jen came in from the garage. She didn’t have time to say hello – she was on a mission. Bounding down the two steps to the family room, her hands nearly crashed into the sliding glass door as she struggled to undo the lock with her gloved hands. The heavy plastic switch slipped helplessly from her fingers as she grabbed at it. She heard her sister behind her.

"Hello? Walk right by me, why don’t you?"

Calista tore off her gloves, flung them to the linoleum floor, twisted the lock and heaved open the door. Another quick snap and the screen door slid open. And she rushed out onto the snow-covered back deck. Free. She gasped for air and cried, wailing like the child she’d just become again standing in the house she grew up in. She held her instantly ice cold fingers to cover her face as she wept, the tears flowing across her skin like hot silk.

Click here to read NaNoWriMo Sample, Part 2

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