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Monday, February 20, 2012

The Ice Maiden for Becca's challenge "Frosty Path"

The Ice Maiden By, L. Anne Wooley

     Act. 1 Scene 1.

     Setting: Washington, DC. Path that runs alongside the mirror pool
     between the Washington, and Lincoln monuments. Winter time late in
     the day.

          Amanda Thornton, a supermodel, is jogging along the path.


          The path below her feet crack under the pressure of her cleat filled tennis shoes. Amanda would run without fail, every day, no matter how bad the weather.

     “John, I have to go to work. Jason is expecting the new novel in a couple of weeks....I sure hope that is what you are working on,” Robert smiled exasperatedly at his lover. He knew better than to push though, John was a workaholic.
     “Just something I'm working on,” John said.
     Robert stepped behind John, and noticed what was on the screen.. “A Screenplay? You've never written a screenplay in your life!” Robert retorted incredulously.
     “Always a first time for everything,” John muttered.
     A heavy sigh was his response. Then he felt Roberts lips on his neck, and he smiled.
     “Don't work to hard on that. You need to finish the novel,” Robert warned. He then turned walking to the door, “Ciao.”
     The absent wave was all he got in response.

     The snow on the ground deterred the other joggers though, and Amanda had the whole trail to herself....well and one other. Unbeknownst to her, someone was up ahead of her, hidden by a tree.
When she reached his position, he stepped out in front of her, arm outstretched, and connected with her neck. She went down on her back. The knife descended too close for her eye to
follow, or to make out a cry. The blood squirted out, and the death rattle came very fast. The blood saturated the snow around the path, and the killer dragged her body deep into the brush.

       John paused. He felt something familiar about the thing. But he felt the need to finish the
Scene. But where to put her body?

      He came through on the other side, and the deepening gloom covered his
movements. He pulled her up, putting his arm around her like he was holding up a drunk. His car was close, and he managed to get her inside the trunk without anyone being any the wiser. There was a plastic liner inside, and he tucked it around her body, like a parent would a child. Except he covered her face last.

     John could not shake the feeling that he knew something about this, the deja vu sense was so strong. He clicked on the Google Chrome Icon on his computer, and looked up the name, “Amanda Thornton.”
His eyes grew big, the first few results were for a model/actress who had been murdered. He remembered the case now. It was big in all the papers, and her body had never been found. The picture of her face came to his mind. Not as it would have appeared when she was alive, rather in death.
       Then he sat back clicking open the document he had started writing in, and then he dove back into the narration.

      He drove for three hours, humming absently to himself, the George Washington Highway led him quickly out of town, he headed towards the Virginia mountains. His cabin was at a higher altitude and secluded.
     His harem was getting larger. He turned off a few hours later, the gravel
drive was slippery with the ice.

     His car navigated the slippery slope, and made it to the top of the driveway. He parked in front of the barn, and the cabin sat to the
right of that.

     He turned off the motor, the adrenalin of getting away once again,
coursed through his veins. The high he got from a successful
slaughter was better than sex.

      John, started looking at Google Earth. This region of the Appalacians was one he was familiar with. His parents cabin was there. He had not been there for ten years; the time that her murder occurred.

     The crunch of his boots on the snow sent chills through his body
and the air was coming out in white puffs. He moved around to the
trunk and opened it. He pulled the bag covered body, placing it over his shoulder,
and walked it into the barnwhere his tools awaited. There was a tractor in it,
and an attached flat bed trailer. He deposited Maggie's body on top of it,
and looked over to where the hacksaw was hanging on the barn wall.

<killer moves over to the wall, where he takes the hacksaw
down from the wall>

               John remembered the tangy scent of blood. He stopped writing, and picked up the phone... “Hello 911....I know where Maggie Thornton and the others are.”

Friday, February 17, 2012

The Wolf and the Crow Flash Fiction for Bony Fingered Limbs Contest

The Wolf and the Crow By, L. Anne Wooley

     Kai sat, legs crossed as he breathed in the peyote smoke. He ignored all the voices that had taunted him. The voices that said he would fail again, even his best friend. He centered himself, using his Grandfathers voice, instructing him in the vision quest. He felt the earth below his body, and the sky above him, as if they were physical beings. The fire in front of him flickered and sizzled. He watched the flames, first they slowed, and then then they stopped. His heart beat slowly, like the drums, and then the dark moved in to surround him. He heard a noise behind him, and turned quickly. He saw ...glowing eyes.
     He leaned slowly to his right, feeling for his knife. He touched the metal comfortingly in his hand. He picked up the hilt and curled his hand around it. He held it slightly in front of him.
The great beast moved into the light of the fire. Its coat was silver, and touched with frosty white edges. Kai looked into it's eyes, knowing breaking contact might mean his death. The two solemnly regarded each other. The wolf blinked but otherwise never broke eye contact.
Kai poised, ready for defense. He felt fear course through his veins, but tried not to let it show. Somehow, he knew the wolf knew.
       The wolf sat, and regarded Kai solemnly. "Well boy, are you going to kill me?"
       Kai jumped about a foot up in the air, he shook his head as if he was hallucinating.                                                                                                                      
       Then another voice broke in, "Yes, are you going to kill the wolf? Because, I would really like some wolf meat. Mighty tasty....mighty tasty." Kai glanced quickly to where the voice was coming from, and he didn't see anything but two glinting eyes. They were closer to the ground.
        "You be silent crow," the snap came so quickly the crow almost did not see it. It jumped back quickly.
       "Oh my, I'm so scared."
      "You're Father Crow." Kai stated.
      "Well spotted boy."
       The wolf sighed. "Human, this is your vision. What do you gain from it?"
       Kai was surprised. He thought he understood that the vision was supposed to tell him, not the other way around.
      "It does not work that way human. This is your vision."
      Kai looked surprised...”You can read my mind?”
      “Of course we can...that's part of the deal,” the crow sounded smug.
      "So I can control it?"
      "To an extent," the wolf responded.
      “So what am I supposed to learn? Why have you never come to me before?” Kai looked puzzled.
      "Human you have much to learn about patience. If you are to lead your tribe, you need patience, wisdom, and courage."
      "And cunning...don't forget the cunning," the crow butted.
      "Cunning has it's uses, but one should never rely on it solely in all situations."
      Kai nodded. "So you are not real, and I don't need to worry about you eating me?"
      "Didn't say that human."
      "What. that you aren't real, or that you won't eat me?"
      "Stupid human. I would have to be real to eat you, now wouldn't I?" the wolf growled and the crow cawed its laughter.
      "Of course not. Sorry," Kai felt very disconnected.
      "You are real if I make you real. My mind controls the vision."
      "You're getting it human," the crow sounded surprised.
      "Now I get it. You are guides, my spirit guides."
      "The boy has some redeeming qualities after all," the wolf admitted reluctantly.
      "You are teaching me a lesson," Kai stated.
      "What lesson are we teaching?" the crow asked.
      "Well wolves are pack animals, much like a tribe," Kai began to work it out in his mind. "There is an alpha wolf that is like a chief. The older wolves train the younger ones, so they are like the shaman."
      "Good human," the wolf nodded, its whiskers rippled in the wind.
       "And what am I then boy?" the crow impatiently broke in.
      "You are the trickster, the cunning one. You wait for the prey to come to you. Or rather their leftovers from the ones who killed them."
      "So far so good."
      "Father Crow, you are the wisest of the guides. What would you have me do?”
      “Only you can find your path, Spirit Walker.”
      “I'm to be a Shaman?” Kai whispered in awe.
      “Yes, Spirit Walker.”
      The crow squawked in response, “You will be the greatest of your tribe.”
      Kai woke to the sunlight on his sign of the wolf or crow.

      He walked into his village, and up to the teepee of his Grandfather. His grandfather waited, “I left my village as Kai, and return to you as Spirit Walker.”  

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Writing a Story

People ask me "What is your process in writing a story?" Which is usually followed up by the dreaded question..."Where do you get your ideas?" The answer to the first question is pretty much straightforward...though on the surface, maybe not so much. One answer is, however it dang well wants to be written. In other words, whatever works for that project is what I do. The same process may work well for one project...but not for the next. But pretty much there is a method that is shared by all, but maybe not in the same order, is what I should say.

I'm not much of a formula type person. Or much of a form type person either. Though form can be really cool, and there really is one even if it isn't apparent. For last years Nanowrimo novel, I did prep work for it. I did the character sketches/interviews; research on Julliard (setting is like Juliard but not Julliard), and a basic outline. Though I didn't necessarily follow that outline. But I had a basic knowledge of my characters, and plot.

For a short story, especially where there is a prompt like a picture...then brainstorming comes in handy. The problem with prompt writing, is that a lot of people will write the same kind of story. It is really hard to come up with something at times, that other writers aren't doing. It's still a valuable asset to have. There are differences between short stories and novellas/novels, but there are also similarities.

For short stories, I do a rough draft "free-write" where I just get the words down. The structure comes out of that, and then I rewrite/edit from there.

Now as to where I get my ideas... they come from everywhere. Something I read will sometimes spark ideas, writing prompts also do...the news. Snippets of Pretty much everywhere. Even people bouncing off their ideas at me, will give me an idea that I can use. But to make the idea unique, that is the hard part.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Day 4 song headache

Day 4....nuff said.

Okay so Funky Town/Car Wash didn't faze it a bit! My friend Laurie had one that was stuck for a week....”What would you do with a Drunken Sailor.” Which is infinitely much worse than Selena Gomez on the grand scale of things. Btw aside....who makes up the Grand Scale hmmm???? Gotta slap em. Anyhow I digress. See what happens when a mind is invaded by song headaches.
It really wouldn't be too bad if it were like “Unwritten” or ABBA. I love them. I would love them to be in my head pretty much 24/7. Also wouldn't be bad if it were more than the chorus of Selena's song stuck in my head. I did like the rest of the song. 

I don't know of any more drastic measures to employ...guess like a migraine, I have to wait it out!     

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Song Headache day 3

<sigh> Here it is day 3, and Selena is still stuck in my head. This is time for drastic measures people....I'm going to have to pull out the secret weapon. A song so bad for song headaches, that it makes my head weep at the thought of it.

Wait for it....wait for it......

<“Won't you take me to...Funky Town"”>

And if that don't work....

<"Working at the Car Wash Yea.">

Seriously, I've been fighting this song headache since it started 2 days ago. ARGH!
I hope it goes away soon.  Song Migraines are not fun.  And no amount of aspirin or any pain killer will cure it!  Just going to keep throwing songs at it.  Wish me luck!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Song Headache Day 2

Okay, going into  day 2 of the song headache.  Why didn't I document day 1?  Because I didn't think I would be HAVING a day 2.  But here it is, day 2 of the song headache.  This one involves a Selena Gomez song.  You know the one with the catchy, "I love you like a love song baby!"  And it is just this line (the chorus) which is really stuck in my head.  It's taken root and has no inclination of leaving any time soon.

So you wonder, "Why don't you try to supplant it with another song?"  Been there done that.  It's gotten to the point where I have been trying to volley all sorts of songs at it.  Pink Floyd took over for a bit (thank the god's would love if that was the song that would not leave ma alone), but NO... Selena's comes back again, and again, and again. ...and well you get my point.  No point in beating a dead horse.

So it is like I'm channel surfing in my brain, but then when all is quiet, I start humming it.

DAMN you Selena Gomez!   :)

There, hopefully that say's it all!

hmmm...hmmm. hmmm hm hm hm hm hm hmm hmm.


Friday, February 3, 2012

Resting. Story for the picture "Deserted" Bony Fingered Limbs story contest

Resting by, L. Anne Wooley Final draft

        On the surface, this lot is empty. Yet it is full of secrets. Secrets one man hopes, will go with him to his grave. This lot is his dumping ground, my cemetery. I am not the only one. He buried us here, all ten of us. My death was quick. He tortured the others. But someone came along, and mine was rushed. The others were not so lucky, and are somewhat envious of me.
        I remember much of what happened. How he hit me on the back of the head, and the nightmare of waking up, seeing the knife descend, disappearing from view. The quick pain, and the warmth of the blood pouring out of me. I know the authorities probably found the blood, nothing really got rid of it. He killed me because I would have caught him, I was a forensic specialist. I'd seen him around the courthouse, when I had testified in murder cases, and he gave me the creeps. I did not make the connection until it was too late.
        Sarah, his first was 12, and his sloppiest. He left tons of evidence, did not have control of his emotions. He never raped any of us, which was a blessing. Killing gave him that sexual high.
        Julie was fifteen. She was the most tortured of us. He had days with her. Julie often hangs out near me, she relives her murder constantly. I try to help by bringing up her family to get her out of that loop.
       The next girl was Millicent. She was from a rich family; a wrong place at the wrong time opportunity for our killer. She had never known violence before. She was even worse then Julie at times.
      I was Vicki. I was finally getting close to him, narrowing down his killing zone by using soil samples, when he killed me. I regretted that I had not caught him in time, and that he had killed my daughter. I would have named her Estella. She was five months along at the time of her death, She really doesn't have a clue that she was an unborn baby. I wish Estella could be set free, it didn't matter to me what happened to me, but my daughter was innocent... not saying I'm not innocent, but she was more so.
         I have asked the others if they have been able to leave. They say they tried to leave, but they could not. I tried, and there was a barrier. I could see through it, but not touch it. It made me feel as if I were dying all over again.
      He came to visit us...our remains. He knew where each of us were buried. And he kept telling us nobody would ever, ever find us. I learned to ignore it over time, but the others, it tortured them so badly, I learned to hate him even more for their sake.
      We discussed ways of trying to stop him. I found out that I could move objects, not far, but I could interact with the living world. I showed the others, and they too were able to do this. I wondered if this could be used against him. I suspected that he had to die before we could move on, and we couldn't, he locked us here in this “cemetery” with no headstones.
      Estella appears beside me, pointing to our killer. He is holding a garbage bag...if I had been alive with a stomach to fall, it would have been falling. Another one. This one had been bad, she came up beside me, watching her body with sad eyes. She was just now coming to the conclusion that she was not alive anymore.
      'I'm sorry,” I whispered.
      She jerked in response. “Who are you?”
      “I'm a sort of 'sister' to you. He killed me too, and the others as well,” I responded sadly. I was tired of having to be a surrogate mother. I held no answers as to why she had been chosen.
      He began to laugh with glee, putting knife up with the new girls blood on the blade taunting us. Hate wells up inside of us... I concentrate on the knife; reaching out with my hand, I grab the blade and start to turn it towards him. He let out a muffled “What the....” and then started turning it back.
      I let out a moan, yelling “Help!” Estella melds with me, I feel her love fill me. Others start to join me. I feel their love and their anger and their pain manifest, adding to my strength. Again the knife turns, and I am about to push it in, when the new girl starts to freak out. She has not joined us, and I know in an instant she must, or else this would not work.
      “Come, join us sister, we need you.”
      “I can't.”
      “You must,” the others and I say, the melding of our voices become one.
      She begins to leave when my beautiful daughter reaches out to her. The new girl sees my Estella's hand. She grabs it, and then moves in with us. Our strength gives her the courage, and we shove the knife into his throat, severing his jugular.
      The ground begins to seep up his blood as he gurgles out the last of it, and we release his body. It falls to the ground. We look at each other, laughing and dancing. He is gone, and we are free, no more Sisters would join us. We begin to discuss what we should do with the body, when the tunnel appears in front of us, We cry now able to move on, as one by one we ascend until I am the last. Turning back I see that he is now imprisoned, and we are free.