One of my skill sets includes giving snippets of stories with absolutely no context whatsoever. I’m very talented, I know.
I thought I’d post some snips from my current novella, Bridled. In a fit of
sanity generosity I decided to be a clear as mud today and give you the logline and some background information beforehand. 😀
When a British detective inspector is given a case similar to the one that tore his reputation apart two years ago, he must fight through his struggling health to solve the case before the press and time ensure another failure.
The logline up there isn’t perfect, by far, but it sort of sets the stage for the novel (er, we hope so, precious…). If you’re already lost…I’m sorry. I tried to make sense, I really did, scout’s honor!
Remember the grouchy detective named Hawkes who appeared in my post about crossovers? Bingo, that’s the Detective Inspector. He’s far from home, has been hurt badly, and is in fact quite like a hermit crab. Thank goodness Kansas isn’t wide, open, and full of rolling horizons like the ocean, since he has Aquaphobia (oh, wait).
The last thing he wants is a case like the one he’s on, or the press involved, or having to interact with people, or coffee. Apparently he has a lot of lasts on the list of things he wants. As the logline mentioned, he’s ill. With what, I shall not say; those are things only evil authors/authoresses should know in the first draft stage.
Speaking of which! This is a first draft, so please don’t eat me alive and tell me how awful these snippets are; I know already it is far from perfect. Critique if you like–I’d enjoy that!–but no biting.
“Get out,” Hawkes said to the reporter, the open sky and the cars in the parking lot while looking at none of them.
“Just ten minutes,” she twisted the phrase to fit into an earnest, reasonable tone. The wind rasped her long hair against her dark grey windbreaker that matched her eyes.
Hawkes growled and spun around, spitting out his next words with great effort: “Over my dead body.”
The smirk on her face as he returned his gaze left no room for being impressed with his words. “You can’t do this. You have no right to be here, and I can make this difficult. You know how difficult this can be, and I’m not afraid to go there.”
“So long as I am breathing,” he hissed into the cold air, his eyes flinting angrily, “you will not get a single word from me. No comment.” Tossing the last two words as complete finality, he marched over to his car door, and, snapping open the door, got in and left.
Chinking glasses, the clinks of forks against hot food and even a real smile that creaked across his face. Two people, living people, were sitting across from him and laughing. How long had it been? Two years?
Trip resisted the urge to laugh at the startled look on the Detective Inspector’s face. “Are you hungry, Sir?”
The DI thought for a minute. “Sure.” He opened his notebook and started flipping through it, apparently expected the conversation to be at an end.
“Do you want to get something to eat?” The DI’s eyebrows shot up, and Trip tried harder to pressurize the laughter inside of him. “You know, eat food at a restaurant.”
“That’s not a good idea.” The DI looked genuinely confused now. “Why would—“
“People go out to eat with their bosses; it’s what they do,” Trip explained patiently. He tried to decide if the DI was more horrified at or just unfamiliar with this concept. Noting that the DI’s face was a shade paler, he decided on horrified. “Traditionally, you don’t talk about work.”
“She doesn’t like public speaking,” Trip said to the DI before he realized he’d opened his mouth. “I guess she’s glad to have someone else to do the talking.”
“Most of us don’t,” the DI replied. Trip glanced at him in some surprise, and the DI shrugged. “Some of us mind the speaking, and some of us mind who we have to talk to. Different results. Ugh,” he smirked, eyeing his disobedient tie.
“But the press coverage could help.”
“Where were you the other day?” the DI snapped in a sarcastic tone. “Did you not see what happened? The state newspaper absolutely swarmed the place within days of that guest journalist’s report. All they care about is a story.”
All snips copyrighted © to Elizabeth Kirkwood 2013.