I had a good day of writing. I was able to get a lot done, as well as flesh out a few characters. If you remember, in yesterday’s post I spoke of a character who had become more than a just one shot character, she became alive. Well, after I wrote that blog post, I ended up writing another whole extra chapter, one where Jill Trueheart had more of a roll, concreting her into the story, and securing that she will be seen again. That makes me truly happy.
Well today, I have a little treat for you, I am going to share my first excerpt for you to read. It’s a way of giving my readers a small taste of my writing, as well as seeing how the story is written for yourselves. Please understand that this is what I call a “vomit draft”. Because of the nature of NaNoWriMo, this was written fast, and has had little to no editing. I have polished it up a little so it will, at least, be presentable to you, but other than that, it’s still the first draft that I “vomited” up. So if it looks, reads, and smells like crap, please understand that I won’t be wasting any of my 30 days to making it look perfect. I can always work on making it good later on. So, enjoy your first look into my novel.
“Aren’t you excited, Saul?”
“Excited? I would rather muck out a stable than get on that aeronautical out there. If I die on this trip, Xan—”
She cut him off. “Then you won’t have to worry about it anymore. Come on, let’s find our seats. I got us the luxury tickets. We’ll pretty much own the gondola for the week. First class seats, private sleeping compartments, and first pick of the meals. They only sell four luxury tickets per trip, and I was able to get to the last two.”
“That’s better than nothing,” Saul said. They walked to the gate, offered the attendant their passes, and stepped onto the walkway that would lead to the aeronautical.
They reached the door to the gondola, and Xandria walked passed with no problem. Saul handed the luggage to the boy who would take it to their sleeping cabins, and tipped him fifty cents.
He walked to the threshold of the airship and stopped. There were a few passengers waiting in line behind him, but he couldn’t move. The tiny gap between the airship and the walkway looked like a canyon. He saw into the airship, and it was beautiful and comfortable looking. But his mind would only go to the height it would be at and the hydrogen that held it up. He was sweating. He didn’t want to do this, he didn’t want to cross.
He looked at the gap, unable to tare his eyes from it. He found himself hyperventilating. Then a soft, warm hand took his. He looked up into Xan’s beautiful eyes. She was smiling. “Come on, Saul. It’ll be alright, I promise you that.”
Saul couldn’t believe her, but her eyes were full of truth. He swallowed. God, I love this woman, he thought. He squeezed her hand, then looked back at the gap. Though it still looked massive to him, it wasn’t as large as he once thought. He wiped his brow with his trembling free hand, and said in a scratchy whisper, “Let’s fly.”
He swallowed again, ignored his uncontrollably shaky hands, and stepped across the threshold of the ship. Once on the other side, he breathed out. Though he still didn’t feel safe, he was able to get the hardest part out the way, he had stepped on board. From here, all he had to do was wait until they were in the air, then there would be nothing he could do. The rest of the flight would be a breeze…so long as they remained alive that is.
A pretty young woman looked at their tickets and said, “Right this way, Mr. Deus and Miss Jopp. You have first class seats.”
She lead them only a few feet, where there were four roomy seats with a lot of leg room, and trays for food that could be slid into place. It was more like a luxury train car than an airship gondola. Behind the four seats were four separate sleeping compartments that would be for the first class ticket holders, a small lavatory, then a red velvet curtain that separated the first class from the rest of the airship.
The attendant brought them to the second row of seats. Xan thanked her and sat down. Saul sat in the seat next to her, and felt his nerves settle. Though the gondola felt level and solid enough, he knew that once they took to the air, it wouldn’t be so. He wiped his forehead with his sleeve and gripped the seat arms for security.
“I’m proud of you, Saul,” Xandria said in a sweet voice, like candy.
Saul wanted to scold her for sounding like a mother rather than a friend, but at the moment he was worried that he would vomit if he opened his mouth. Along both paths next to the seats, other passengers walked to their seats behind the curtain, all ignoring Saul and Xandria.
Saul began to calm down a bit, and looked at his friend. “Thank you,” he managed to spit out.
“For what?” Xan asked.
He took her hand into his sweaty one. “For helping me get onto this thing.”
She searched his face looking for sarcasm, and must have been satisfied with his words. “I couldn’t let you do it alone.”
“I wouldn’t have done it alone,” he admitted.
-Excerpt from Deus Ex Machina; Chapter 6, by Andrew Ronzino
Now, I have another special little treat for you. In the NaNoWriMo chat room, there is a bot named Timmy, and he is the most obnoxious and annoying thing ever. He says the most off the wall stuff, but you can’t turn him off. Anyway, he will sometimes issue challenges to people, and most of them are obnoxious and annoying crap, but every now and then he’ll challenge something good. Earlier today, Timmy challenged me to “Write about someone killing Death”. At first I was going to ignore it, like most people do, as his challenges don’t matter, but after some thinking I said to myself, “Screw it! Challenge accepted!”
Now, I’m writing a steampunk, and someone fighting Death just won’t fit, so I found a little way to pass the challenge anyway, and this is what I wrote:
Above the fireplace mantle, there was a painting that Saul remembered from when he was a teenager. It was a picture of a man dueling a grim reaper, and the man was stabbing him in the chest. The painting was a one of a kind piece by an unknown painter. It was simply called “Killing Death”. It was one of Saul’s favorite parts of the house.
-Excerpt from Deus Ex Machina; Chapter 10, by Andrew Ronzino
Again, keep in mind that these excerpts are extremely rough and I’m fully aware of that.
Current word count for Deus Ex Machina: 15,173/50,000!
Until the morning sun rises,
Andrew Ronzino, A Man Who Beat Timmy’s Stupid Challenge