Note: Don’t forget all comments left on ANY post between November, 4th and November 30, 2010 will count as one entry into the Wii should be friends giveaway.
If you follow me on facebook or twitter you’ll know that I am writing a book. Actually, I am participating in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). Basically, the goal is to write a 50,000 word novel (more of a novella really) in thirty days (or 1667 words per day).
I took on the challenge last year and won (finished the challenge). I was thrilled … I wrote a book. A book that exactly ZERO humans were permitted to read (not even Mr. MK). I didn’t even read it over in it’s entirety when it was finished. I saved the folder on my laptop and forgot about, until Monday morning when I wanted to give it a quick read so I could write a sequel. You see I’d created two characters who could star in my next book (HA). It was then I realized that my final copy wasn’t on my desktop, but on my old laptop, whose hard-drive is frazzled. I still have the first 35000+ words, but lost the the last 22000+.
It really it shouldn’t matter. I obviously hadn’t intended to show it to anyone, however, I realized that my proof was gone. That’s when I realized that I should have let some one read it. I was a BIG CHICKEN!
So tonight I share with you all –> Chapter One of my second book. Please, please remember that I am not a professional novelist. This is intended to be an easy read romance. Due to time constraints (50000+ words in 30 days) I am not proof reading (until it’s done). There will be errors in grammar and punctuation. I spell in Canadian/British English, not American (most of the time). I am creating the plot as I go along (I decided not to revive the characters from Book 1). I’d love feedback, but please don’t be too hard on me.
Bridget strode briskly, even boldly down the street, humming not all that quietly to herself as she made her way home. It was a Friday afternoon after all, and even the self-employed deserved an evening off. She marvelled at the fall colours. She loved her older neighbourhood, with its narrow tree –lined streets. Its unconventional mix of old and new, it was a neighbourhood in transition. It definitely felt like home. It irked her mother to no end that she’d chosen to use the inheritance from her Grandmother to buy, “that dilapidated old rattle-trap!”
However, if it were up to her mother she’d still be living at home, or in the horrible black and white, uber-modern penthouse apartment her mother had tried to bribe her with after she’d graduated from university. She just couldn’t understand that Bridget wanted to make her own way. She was nearly thirty after all.
She’d fallen in love with the old house the moment the real-estate agent had pulled the car up front. It was a three-storey turn of the century brick Victorian. It was definitely in need of some TLC, but her inheritance hadn’t been quite that large. Bridget had spent the last two years working painstakingly on the first floor. She managed to keep the early 20th century charm and detail, and at the same time had modernized the kitchens and bathrooms ***HOUSE DESCRIPTION HERE. She had just enough living space on the main floor, but was looking forward to getting to work on the second floor and the master bedroom.
She sighed, as anxious as she was to get started, she didn’t want to go into debt for renovations and the quality craftsmanship required to do these sorts of renovations didn’t come cheaply. Of course she did as much of the work as she could on her own, but she was no carpenter and most of the jobs required a professional.
Bridget was sure the red and gold of autumn were more brilliant than in previous year. Then she laughed at herself, because she was pretty sure, she’d felt exactly the same was last year, and all the years before. It was probably just because she loved fall. Nature’s beauty had a lot with it, but it wasn’t all that Bridget loved about fall. She relished the cooler temperatures. With her red hair and pale freckled skin, the summer sun just wasn’t her friend. She was pretty sure that annoyed her fussy mother as well. She wasn’t going to think about her mother right now though. Why let Edith ruin a perfectly wonderful fall afternoon?
Bridget’s mother, Edith Riley (Edie to her friends), was a petite, meticulous blonde. She sported a ‘healthy looking’ tan year round, due in part to a handful of yearly tropical vacations. It annoyed her to no end that Bridget had long ago refused to tag along. She’d been forty when Bridget was born more than ten years after the younger of her two brothers. She’d always longed for a daughter to shop with and host parties with and for. Only Bridget wasn’t quite what she’d imagined. Right from the first moment she’d laid eyes on her newborn daughter she been shocked and surprised. It started with an unruly head of red (orange really) fuzz, and progressed *** PROGRESSED TO WHAT? (this bit needs work).
Thankfully for Bridget her rather northern Alberta location necessitated short-lived summers, and the fall temperatures were a respite that meant she could get outside and enjoy her beloved outdoors.
As Bridget rounded the last corner before arriving home, she started to rummage in her purse for her keys. It wasn’t a purse really, but more of a computer/camera bag. It had room for her beloved laptop and Nikon and the VERY large outer pocket meant she had room to fit in all kinds of other necessities, but its lack of organizational pockets led to inevitable scrambling and digging for her possessions. Bridget wasn’t the least bit bothered. The bag had been a freebie (free stuff rocks!) and it was pink, well magenta really, but any sort of pink was her favourite colour, and for ‘free AND pink’ she could live without organizational pockets. Of course, her mother had pointed out that the bag clashed horribly with her ‘orange’ hair (“You know dear, my stylist could help to give you a lovely shade of strawberry blonde … ?”, but truly it was ‘free AND pink’, so really who cares right?
Bridget finally managed to find the keys in the very lowest recesses of the bag, as she did; she looked up and was startled by the gaping front door. Even from the street Bridget knew there was something wrong. Through her front door, which wasn’t just open, but hanging in an awkward lopsided sort of way, (you know, the way doors look in the movies right after some large brute hoists up his tree trunk of a leg and gives it a good hard kick), Bridget could see her front hall table laying clumsily on its side.
Dear God, what was she supposed to do? She rushed up the front walk. Who would do this to her beloved house? The door, just the door was way too much damage. She hoped the table wasn’t scratched too badly. “You’d better wait outside. They’re gone. I called the police, but you’d better not go in until they get here.”
“Oh hello Mrs. Dupleski”, Bridget responded to her elderly and all too nosey next door neighbour. Although she could hear the older woman, she couldn’t see her and assumed that she had parked herself in one of the half-dozen windows she frequently used to watch the comings and goings of her neighbours. Mrs. Dupleski had definitely taken some time to warm up to, but Bridget knew the very frail older lady had very little to fill her long days and her constant monitoring of the comings and goings of her neighbours was merely an attempt to fill what must be very long, lonely days. Not only that, Bridget often joked with friends that she had her own twenty-four surveillance. “Did you see who it was, Mrs. Dupleski?
“Well dear you know I don’t like to be nosey … “.
It took all Bridget’s effort not to sigh and roll her eyes, but she didn’t. She encouraged Mrs. Dupleski to carry on, “Of course you don’t Mrs. Dupleski”.
“But today, lucky for you I was opening this very window to enjoy some fresh air when I saw them arrive. They didn’t look much like the sort of fellas you usually have around. Not that there are many men coming around at all. Well not since that last young man you dated. You know the one I mean? The plumb, balding one …”
“Barry, Mrs. Dupleski. His name was Barry”, Bridget supplied through barely controlled annoyance. “
“That’s right, it was Barry. Well these two weren’t anything like Barry; he was such a nice young man. They were big and they looked mighty dangerous. I am surprised you have friends like that dear. Obviously they’re trouble!”
“Mrs. Dupleski, I don’t have friends like that!” Bridget also wanted to add that Barry wasn’t all that nice of a young man. She really wanted to know why a nice girl like her couldn’t keep a man interested, but a bore like Barry could string two women along at the same time. Just thinking about it irked her. She hadn’t ever been all that serious about Barry, but being two-timed by a putz like Barry was just too much.
“Well dear, they called out to you by name several times before the big dark one nearly knocked that front door off of its hinges. Just how would they know your name if they weren’t friends of yours dear?”
Bridget was pretty sure the last question was followed by a series of disapproving tsks, but Bridget was spared Mrs. Dupleski’s inquisition with the arrival of her mother and father. “Oh good, your mother is here Dear. I called her too, right before the police; I knew she’d want to be here. She’s sure to want to know why you’re keeping company with the sort of friends who knock down your front door.”
Bridget’s heart sank as her father’s sleek, silver Mercedes pulled up to the curb in front of the house. Damn Mrs. Dupleski, why would she call her mother? Really, she was nearly 30 years old, it just wasn’t right.
Edie Riley was out of the car, before her husband Joe had time to even turn the car off. “Darling, WHAT pray tell is going on? Why in heavens are your friends kicking down your door in broad daylight?”
“Hello Mother. I haven’t a clue WHAT is going on and I can assure you this wasn’t friends. I haven’t been inside yet, but even from here I can see that it’s been ransacked. Why on earth Mrs. Dupleski, would think that friends did this is beyond me Mother!”
“Dear I told you why, they were calling out your name.”
Joe Riley was as sleek and polished as his luxury car. In fact, he looked an awful lot like his car, with perfectly trimmed silver hair, a meticulously tailor suit in steel grey. He carried himself with the authority of the superb corporate lawyer that he was. If not for the twinkle in his extraordinarily blue eyes he might have been intimidating. Well he might have been slightly intimidating anyway, but not to Bridget. Bridget had always had an ally in her father. When her mother had lamented over the daughter she’d wished she’d had, Joe had adored Bridget and still did, all 6 feet of her (pale skin, freckles and orange hair included).
It hadn’t taken a young Bridget long to realise, she wasn’t exactly the daughter her mother wanted. However, for every time her mother had hauled her to the mall and bored her silly, her father had spent equal time helping her refurbish her older brothers’ long forgotten tree house, hiking and skiing. She adored him.
As Joe made his way up the front walk to join his wife and daughter, he gave the obligatory wave in the direction of Mrs. Dupleski’s window. “Afternoon Mrs. Dupleski, thank you for calling.” Then to his daughter he spoke, “Don’t be angry with us Bridie, we were just around the corner at Maximes sharing a Friday evening cocktail when Mrs. Dupleski called. Your mother was frantic, and I have to admit I was alarmed as well. Have you been in the house?”
“I know Dad”, Bridget sighed and put her arm around her mother’s petite shoulders. Her father was right, although she and her mother were oil and water, she knew her mother was mostly well intentioned and Bridget loved her, faults and all. “Thanks for coming. I haven’t been in the house. I haven’t had the chance yet. Mrs. Dupleski says the men who did this are long gone, but I was thinking maybe we should wait for the police.”
“That sounds like a good idea to me, and you won’t have much of a wait.” Joe tipped his head to indicate the EPS patrol car that was pulling up to the curb behind his Mercedes. Two uniformed officers climbed out of the car and made their way up the walk.
Now I have to get back to writing. I have 500 more words to reach my daily 1667 word goal.
I’m quaking in my boots.