Monday, November 30, 2009

My Blood Bath Scene

Chengral lowered his weight upon his heels and closed his eyes. He cleared his mind from all distraction and thought. Willing his heart to a slow rhythm, his breath evened out to match the flow in his veins. The forest sounds hushed all around him, as if aware of his meditative state. He listened to every whit of the nocturne’s symphony—one by one, the notes dismembered.


Which resonant chord would reveal the pathway of his mark? Which—


Chengral opened his eyes, deciphering a cleft in the harmony of the night.

He turned over his shoulder, his nostrils flaring wide as he inhaled the faint scent of his preys’ warmth. They were not too far. He listened to the silent passageway the insects had painted from their fleeing a day ago. He rose to his feet, chin down, heart growling.


Blood. He could hear the sounds of their roaring Letys blood . . .


Every particle of his being sprang to life and he flung himself into a full gallop. The thought of the hunt ignited his craving. He tied his cape around his waist, his wings spreading wide either side of his body. With one mighty leap, he sailed through the dark, his fists splitting the wind in two.


Unused to flying, Chengral would mull over this amazing feat a different time. The drive to hunt down his quarry burned deep in his skull. Their bonfire, like a lone beacon in a sea of void, drifted far below. His rage kindled.


“As to your bidding I go, my queen.” Desire twisted in his loins with the thought of Tanchaa’s promise.


The Letys would be no more after this hour. They would regret their barbarous deeds of devouring their young and slaying their old. They would taste the suffering his people endured when they sneered the chesdin way. They would lament the moment they dared to settle alongside the inhabitants of this world. A soft hollow melody from a crude whistle reached him, their restless animals barked and howled.


Anger. Hatred. Disgust.


The voices of his emotions tore through him with one mighty roar. Chengral heard their panicked silence. He smelled their fear. He felt their souls. He tasted their blood. They were aware of his incursion. One more sniff and he knew without a doubt. They were Letys. A rush of fiery anticipation lit his veins.


He saw their terror.


With feral vigor, Chengral retrieved his sword and dagger mid-flight. He descended upon the fire’s glow—the impact plunging them into immediate gloom. Six. He could hear every one of them. They screamed, jumped to their feet, eyes wild. Their bodies trembling and thrashing and falling. Fear had them in its grip.


Chengral snarled and lifted high his powerful sword. He slashed through the air with the pure voice of metal. A wet gurgle. Then silence. He swung around, promptly locating the others as they raced into the darkness.


Dangerous. Cannibals. Heathens. All deserving of chesdin justice.


“For Tanchaa! For Choldra!” Chengral howled. He sprung upward with one mighty thrust of his wings and landed in their pathway, his impressive wingspan barring the trail. The whites of their eyes shown, their teeth flashed, their arrows pointed.


But Chengral was faster. His blade slashed and forever stilled the movement of three with one unexpected sweep of his arm.


He sneered. Cowards. All of them. They had forgotten the chesdin path. The Choldra way of life. Truly Tanchaa stood correct. They were merely animals and nothing more, having mated with the denizens of this world. His fathers long forgotten—paling their veins to nothing more than water.


A shriek split the night followed by sharp stab.


Chengral cried out and whirled around with a quick release of his dagger. It sang through the air. Clear. Fast. True. The Letys stared powerlessly at it and dropped its crossbow, its eyes wide with a muted scream. A thud. Chengral marched onward and retrieved his dagger. He wiped away the filth on the creature’s leg.


He remembered the arrow in his shoulder and wrenched it from his searing flesh with a cry. Hot blood oozed down his back. He growled and searched for his last victim.


It fled on a beast of four legs.


Chengral laughed. Would the Letys creature be foolish enough to lead him back to its nest? To where he could finish off their wretched existence? He decided at once a hunt without mystery would spoil his pleasure. Let it be done with now. Soon enough he would find joy in ridding the burrow of its paltry creatures.


He vaulted into the heavens—his billowing wings captured the wind and drove him through the black sky. The Letys mount blared, the beating of its hooves quickening. Chengral readied his blades, holding them out at his sides, his eye fixed on the traitor’s form below. He threw the dagger. A sharp whistle. A thump. A shriek. And still, it clung for its life to the mount.


With a smile, Chengral quickened his pace, easily gliding past the horrified Letys. He followed pace, basking in its terror as it sent many glances his way. He could hear its breath. Hard and grating in its body. He could smell its terror. Hot and blind in its thoughts. He could taste its blood. Fast and wild in its veins.


A swift flight of sound split through his hair and Chengral knew. The Letys attacked with its arrow. Time to end this child’s play. Coiling quickly in the sky, he kicked the weapon away from its grasp. Its cry music to Chengral’s delight. He arched and circled back, his claws hooking and lifting the creature into the blackness. Higher and higher.


It kicked and squealed and howled. And still higher Chengral rose.


“For the young you have slain!” he bellowed, releasing the Letys into the living night. A yowl. Then silence. Silence but for the furious pounding of Chengral’s heart. His breath hard in his lungs. His body tight.


And still he rose, his talons clawing the moon. His body taut and sultry with Letys blood. Battle clouded his judgment. Violent and wild and free. He felt no civility in his soul. All thought senseless and feral. His body had reacted and lost all sense of harmony.


Chengral gazed into the shadows below. With an aerial somersault, he found it. The Letys mount. Foam in the mouth and rearing with piercing shrieks at his nearness. His dagger jutted from its back. He swooped down and pulled it out. The beast wailed.


With his free hand came down his sword.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Review: An Angel on Main Street by Kathi Oram Peterson



My first impression when I first picked up this book was: Is this an inspirational story about a mysterious person doing random acts of kindness?

So I snuggled into bed and turned to the first page and read.

All at once, I was whisked into a boy's world where he struggled with previous life's choices and made the commitment to walk brighter pathways. Suddenly, he is faced with many trials that could possibly lead him into relapses while others believe he has lost his way. It wasn't until I was five pages into the story that I realized that I did not know his name! As soon as that thought hit me, I put the book down, surprised.

Yes, Kathi is that good a writer. I felt as if I knew Micah Conners already without the introduction of his name. I was already drawn into the story, the characters, the setting, the theme. I was hooked.

As I read, I hoped that Micah would make good choices so as to avoid the heartache of consequences that follow from poor decisions. I cheered him when he had the strength to walk away from potentially precarious situations. I wept with him when his heart broke from lost hope. My heart warmed for him when he finally found faith and peace in his shambled world.

I am rather impressed with Kathi's gift of slipping into Micah's head and making him come alive. His emotions and thoughts and feelings remained true and so believable it had me laughing in certain parts and crying in others.

Just as in real life, the closer Micah drew to his goal, the more tangled life became. With the stout heart of a warrior, he fought for his beliefs and grew stronger from them though he felt lost and alone and afraid.

This story is so wrought with faith, courage, and strength, that I am making it a part of my family's Christmas celebration this year.

So, where does the angel part come into play you ask? Find out for yourself and add this wonderful story to your family Christmas tradition!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Joy in the Journey



I used to think how lucky certain writers were when they signed a contract and became published authors. I would compare myself to them and even murmur, thinking that they had a timely break and hope that I would have an angel swooping down and magically turn me into a published author over night.

I felt forlorn until I took a look at the marketing plan. I thought, wow, of course one would need to work to promote the book to real success!

Since then, I've decided to take one day at a time. I can enjoy the freedom of writing without a deadline--and after doing NaNo (already done my 50K + words), boy I can surely feel the pressure of that.

Why bite my nails and think, "Rats! I want a contract right now! I want my book published right now!" Remember the story of the tortoise and the hare? Well, I want to be like the tortoise, enjoying every step of the journey and getting there when I get there. Not to rush the Lord's hand in these things.

That's what it boils down to, is trusting the Lord in all things--even in regards to when I will be published.

Tell me how are you enjoying your journey with writing, where ever it may be?

Sunday, November 15, 2009

NaNoWriMo

As you know, I spent about seven days with Kay at the Sweetwater Lodge. I was able to complete more than my NaNo 50,000 word count in 8 days--never counting Sundays. I had written about 3, 000 before visiting her and the rest I finished with her.

I completed an entire novel and started another one. It's truly been an adventure in writing. I love to write and look forward with the same comparison as child does to Christmas morning. I can't wait to crack open my magic box and start bringing out the gifts my muse helps me to create!

It was literally six whole days of literary abandon! I loved it! I hope we can do this again sometime in the future, thank you Karen!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Writing Sisterhood

Here it is, two nights and two days later Sunday at the Sweetwater Lift Lodge in Park City

and it has been a writer's haven of heaven. I am so very grateful for Karen Hoover's generosity

and love by inviting me along with our most treasured writing group of awesome sisters to come

over so we can reinforce our already strong bonds of friendships by doing what we love best:

WRITING!

My heart is very full as I express my gratitude for my wonderful critique group because we are

so much more than that--we are sisters in Zion who love one another and who build one another

up and who cheer each other on. Talk about major support group. I have to be forthright and

honest, but I wouldn't be where I am right now without them (and I am not referring to Park

City). :)

Finding that it's a writer's blood life to connect with other writers, how are the dynamics like

with your writing friends and groups?

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Muse Awakened

Wow. Ever since I geared myself for NaNoWriMo a week before November 1st, I found that my

muse was hiding so very well in me but I dug her out. She has been an awesome companion as I've

written over 7,000 words yesterday and a roughly 26,694 since this month has started. I still won't

write on Sundays and I know that my commitment to keeping God's sacred day holy will shine

through!

How is NaNo going for you and where are you at?

Monday, November 2, 2009

Uh Oh! There's a Monster Inside Me!

This is going to be a rather informal post because of NaNoWriMo. I've been doing a lot of thinking about the post and have spoken with many of my close writer friends and we all have agreed on the same thing.

When we are so focused on writing and expect to get some in and find that we can't because of spontaneous events such as the needs of our children (even if they are regularly scheduled like making dinner) or maybe other things that are out of our control, it is that the beast of impatience, frustration and quick to anger, erupts.

I know this happens to me for sure. I feel awful when I do that because my family needs me and I let my writing take precedence over them at times and it causes problems--especially when I put my writing first. It is so hard to put it aside since I love it so much and yes, I guess I am addicted to it!

The Lord counsels all things in moderation. And we can't serve two gods. Ahem. (I'm hiding my head here!) I have pondered the importance of controlling my worldly passions (writing, writing and writing!) and the only thing I can come up with is to put a tight leash on the times when I write.

I've made it a point to keep to writing when my kids are at school and or when they are all in bed. I have to force myself to resist the temptation go past a decent hour as well. All this is done through the Lord's help of prayer and scripture reading.

I hope that I don't fall into that trap of writing over family or over the important things again (the Lord, church, friends). I don't want it to overwhelm my life and have me forget what life is really about!

I'd like to leave you with this neat verse of scripture that isn't exactly related to the topic above, but oh so fitworthy of writing--if you keep in mind your critiquing group as both receiver and contributor.

It is found in Mormon 9: 31

"Condemn me not because of mine imperfection, neither my father, because of his imperfection, neither them who have written before him; but rather give thanks unto God that he hath made manifest unto you our imperfections, that ye may learn to be more wise than we have been."