Friday, April 15, 2011
Posted by Liane Gentry Skye
I'm not a fast writer. Never have been, could never be. My life just isn't written that way. Until 2010, I always made steady progress, enough to win me three releases in 2009.
When life dealt my family an incomprehensible set of blows, I took a year off. Once the dust settled, I felt a lot of self imposed pressure to make up for lost time--and word count.
It made sense that if I wanted to catch my runaway career, I'd do what it took to make my process more efficient. For me, that meant finding a way to turn myself from pantser into plotter.
Good grief, what was I thinking?
The joy of craft has always been about excavating the story behind a bit of dialogue, a snippet of a scene. My finished pieces all have one thing in common. They were born leapfrog style, one scene giving rise to another, but not necessarily in chronological order.
I'm only surprised that it did surprise me when the effort to make my process more efficient instead killed it. While I'm thrilled with the results of all the classes I took on structure during this time, I'm not thrilled with my stories. By forcing myself to master a more efficient process, I lost the thrill of the hunt that keeps me at my keyboard.
And you know what? I don't want to write that way. Giving form to chaos is what I love about the process. For me, it's an organic effort.
Yesterday, as I sat in a hotel room, I was reminded of a snippet of a scene I began two years ago, just before my son's medical meltdown. I longed to revisit it. Though the prose was less than perfect, I found my missing joujou.
So all those dry plots and synopses I spent the last six months weaving went into my slush file last week.
From this day forward, I'm allowing myself to do what works for me...writing on the scene that shimmers in my mind during any given moment.
(Unedited) excerpt ensues!
From Surrender the Night, A Fang Cell Novel
(For my nightengale, whose song led me out of the darkness)
"You want me."
Dana's fingers gripped tighter the base of her snifter and her spine stiffened. She didn't need to turn around to glean the owner of the voice that had rasped those presumptuous words. She already knew. Ryder Black. The man--no, the Fang--that, if the truth be told, she had come here to see.
To spy on.
To seduce if that's what it took to prove him Tristan's murderer.
But if her mission went that far, it would play out on her terms, not his. Every trainer worth their salt knew the only way to master a Fang was to strike first in the psy-ops war. Shock and awe, baby. Shock and awe.
Determined to appear unaffected by his directness, his insolence, she swirled the amber liquid in the glass and lifted it to her nose to inhale its heady fragrance.
"Look at me," he commanded.
The hell she would. Just listent o him throw his words down in the matter of fact manner one might use to note the weather. Nobody had ever spoken to her like that, much less one if his kind.
She slammed down the contents of the snifter, nursing the affront his manner deserved. When she finally spun her barstool around, she meant only to skewer him, first with her glare, and then with a few caustic words of her own. I'll have you kenneled for that attitude, Fang...
The utterance died on her lips. She could feel her jaw drop as she saw how close he stood behind her, so close she could feel the heat from his body warming her cheeks. She had no choice but to tilt her head back in search of the face that belonged to that immense body, that sonorous voice.
Her stare hitched up, up, but she found no safe haven on which to rest her focus. Her gaze rode from muscled thighs straining against worn denim, up, to a stunning set of iced silver eyes. Ryder Black was composed of sinew and muscle, all hard edges and musky male. The man--no, the fang--was huge. Though she was no small woman herself, she resisted the urge to cringe in his shadow.
The glare she'd meant to pierce him with fell only to snag somewhere between his rough hewn jaw and his belt buckle. Bravado fading, she tore her attention from his broad shoulders, clung to the relative safety of a button that was threading halfway out of its hole, threatening to open wider the collar of his white button down.
His every breath teased her with glimpses of well developed pecs and a light dusting of crisp, golden curls. Fisting her hand against the desire to reach out and help that button along in its journey, she felt her anger change into something else.
Look away! Pinning her gaze on the mirrored wall behind him, she gasped. If she were to believe her reflection as it stared back at her, her body had betrayed her. Her flushed cheeks and parted lips proved her a woman overcome with desire.
Ryder had spoken the truth, after all.
She did want him. She wanted to grab both sides of his collar, not so much to choke the insolence from him, but rather to free that button, rip his shirt open, exposing his magnificent torso. Closing her eyes, she could almost hear his buttons pinging on the floor around them as she feasted her eyes on that gigantic body.
And that’s when she realized exactly what it was Immortium did to a woman. It caused the body to act, unedited, on the mind’s hidden fantasies. But only the satin half mask she wore afforded her the anonymity she needed to enact her desires.
The collar of his white shirt crackled as she gathered it in her fists. One well-timed yank, and his neckline was open, buttons pinging around the floor exactly as she’d envisioned. His shirt fell open to his waist; she gasped at the sight of him. Something inside her flexed and bowed until she stood outside herself, a shameless voyeur, watching her body act out a will that could never be her own.
Rather, his will. He wanted her. And knowing that changed everything.
There was more than one way to bring a Fang to his knees. Rising to her tiptoes, she tethered his neck with her arms and pressed her lips to the shell of his ear. “No, Ryder Black,” she whispered into his ear. “I believe it is you who came here seeking me…”