Swanskin Update No3 I DID IT!

Swanskin | Update No3 http://www.aliisaacstoryteller.com

I did it! The first draft of Swanskin is complete! I wrote a mighty (for me!) 7033 words, and on Wednesday, the job was done. Swanskin is just a little book, my first novella. I anticipated around 30K words, and it came in at just under, but that could change. There are a few areas I need to rewrite. And of course, the whole thing needs a bit of spit and polish. The story came to me in such a rush, that I was in a hurry to get it all down and catch up with myself.

Strangely, once I got going, I became very emotionally invested in this story. I didn’t expect that. It was inspired by the lovely tale from Irish mythology called The Dream of Óengus, which I retold for my compilation, Conor Kelly’s Legends of Ireland. This story is one of the few Irish myth stories which ends on a happy note. Swanskin, I have to tell you, does not, but follows in the true vein of romantic tragedies.

Here is an excerpt from Chapter Ten, in which Cethlenn is considering whether to tell her bestie, Sophie, about Ruadhán…

“Where the hell have you been? You missed registration,” hissed Sophie.

“Well I’m here now, aren’t I?” I banged the door of my locker shut and turned to face her.

She gasped. “What happened to you?”

“Nothing.” I picked up my bag and shouldered past her.

“Doesn’t look like nothing.”

“You wouldn’t believe me if I told you.”

“Try me.”

I stopped and stared at her, weighing up what I could trust her with. She was my best friend, and we had shared everything since we first met at primary school. We were more like sisters than friends.

“Really, it’s nothing.” I carried on walking.

She shrugged. “Ok, but you’re going the wrong way. First exam is in Room 12.”

“I know that,” I snapped.

She fell in beside me. “You sure you’re in a fit state to do this exam? Maybe you should tell old Poker-face you’re not well.”

I took a deep breath. “I’m fine.”

“Ok. Well, I covered for you. I told her you were so nervous you were puking your guts up in the bogs,  and that’s why you missed registration. I reckon you’ll get away with it.”

I grinned. “Thanks, Sophie. You’re the best.”

Here’s another little excerpt. Ruadhán had gone missing, and this is what happened on his return…

I opened my eyes, but blackness still pressed against them. I blinked just to be sure. Yes, pitch black. No moon. I reached for my phone; 2am. Great.

My eyes were swollen and tender from crying. I’d had a huge row with Mam. I squeezed them tightly shut again. I just wanted to sleep, so I didn’t have to remember, so I didn’t have to think, so I could just slip into oblivion and not have to feel so shit.

There it was again; the noise which had awoken me. Someone was throwing stones up at my window. But who? Sophie? No way, we hadn’t spoken in weeks. Besides, not much would drag her from her bed before lunch-time. Cian? Had he forgotten his keys again? I’d bloody kill him.

I yanked the quilt aside furiously, and went to the window. Although it was a dark night, there was no mistaking the long coppery hair which glinted under the starlight.

Ruadhán!

I flew down the stairs, heart hammering like a pneumatic drill. I wanted to scream at him, thump him, beat him black and blue for dumping me, but most of all, I wanted to lose myself in his kiss. Then I would kill him.

I fumbled with the key in the lock. Somehow, my fingers didn’t seem to know what to do, ten stubby fat sausages struggling to manipulate a key so tiny it must have been made for Barbie’s gaudy apartment. My whole body was shaking. But I managed it, and then I was in his arms, clinging to him like ivy to a tree.

So there you have it. Next week, I will begin  editing, and contacting beta readers soon after. Thank you to my lovely volunteers!

SWAN FACT No3: A swan can fly at speeds of up to  sixty miles per hour.

other news. 

I wrote a quatern poem for Jane Dougherty‘s prompt called The Bridge. Please pop along to her blog to read it, if you are interested. I love poetry, but it doesn’t come easy to me.

I also submitted a micro-fiction piece to Sacha Black‘s Writespiration, inspired by the prompt; ‘Write about a rusty thing’. So I did, but it’s probably not what you might think. Why not drop by her blog and check out all the other fab entries while you’re there.

Last but by no means least, I would like to thank lovely ladies Marje of Kyrosmagica, and Sally of Smorgasbord – Variety is the Spice of Life, who both nominated me for the #Girllove Blog Challenge. I am deeply touched and honoured, and hope to complete this challenge in the not too distant future.

#Girllove challenge was launched by Lilly Singh, a.k.a. Superwoman, on her  YouTube Channel. Lilly Singh is a Canadian vlogger, actress, comedian, and rapper, age 27. She is tired of ‘girl-on-girl hate’ in schools, workplaces, and social media, so she decided to reverse trends by promoting #GirlLove.  In her empowering video  young women speak out  about their respect and gratitude for other women in their lives. Proceeds from video views will go to the Malala Fund to help educate girls around the world. The goal of the fund is to “enable girls to complete 12 years of safe, quality education so that they can achieve their potential and be positive change-makers in their families and communities”.

 

Advertisements

62 thoughts on “Swanskin Update No3 I DID IT!

  1. Many congratulations, Ali. A job well done, but does the real work now start with editing, etc? I know some that enjoy it, so maybe you do too? What a great writing start to 2016 for you. May it continue for you and I hope many more new stories come your way.
    Hugs.

    Like

    1. Thanks Éilis, for your support and enthusiasm. I cant wait for you to read it either! I was inspired to write it by the story of Óengus’s dream. .. what do you think Ailbhe would say to that?

      Like

      1. LOL, in answer to the question Ailbhe sent me a very animated picture of herself acting very excited about the idea. Then she said, “Dreams are always spun out of some truth.” So there you go, the serious and very unserious reasons why she’s happy about it, all at once. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Haha! I wasn’t expecting that response! I thought she would have rolled her eyes at you and yawned. I agree with her comment, but it also scares me, as I don’t dream often, but this year I have had a lot of very clear, unpleasant dreams, including one of me falling off a cliff into the sea.

          Like

          1. Ailbhe rolling her eyes? LOL, she says, “that’s what Éilis does.” Okay, it’s true. I have never seen Ailbhe role her eyes – unless you count the numerous times she’s sent me pictures of large marbles with eyes painted on them rolling around the floor. She assures me she can get away with it! 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

  2. And I’m accused of being a dark horse! I didn’t even know you were writing this. It’s a lovely title and I know it will be a brilliant read. You do the contemporary dialogue so well, and the ancient scene-setting… no comment. Can’t wait 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol! Thank you! It’s something a bit different for me. I think most people might think it continues in the tradition of the Conor Kelly stuff, but actually, it’s very different to that. It got written unbelievably quickly. I started it months ago, but never got into it. Opened it up after Christmas, and it just wrote itself! 😁

      Like

Please feel free to join in the conversation...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s