Friday, October 9, 2009

Fiction Friday: 3 winners and a new prompt

Had a particularly good week with my novel.

Yesterday I wrote this scene:

When I arrived at Kim’s, I could hear the rumble of the foot-bath through the apartment door. I knocked once and then let myself in. The scent of nail polish remover greeted me.

Since Kim started working at the hospital, we’ve gotten into a routine of getting together every other Tuesday, her day off when she works the weekend, for mani-pedi’s. This week she’d apparently started without me. I passed through the foyer and into the living room.

There, in the papasan chair where I usually sit, her feet ensconced in a bubbling foot-bath, sat Ben.

And I don't know who was more surprised: Ellen, my protagonist, or me. Because it was never in my conscious mind for Ben (who is female, by the way -- Ben is short for "Benatar" -- her mother was a Pat Benatar fan) to be there. I was just typing along, and when Ellen turned the corner, there she was. I instantly realized it made perfect sense. The scene, which needed to include an important conversation between Ellen and Kim on the subject of having children via artificial insemination, would be greatly enriched by Ben's presence. (Odd numbers are good for characters in a scene. They automatically generate the potential for conflict.)

Even more important, I realized I've hit what I think of as the crockpot stage in writing a book, where the soup keeps simmering whether you're actively stirring it or not.

Now let's hope I didn't just jinx myself, bragging about how well things are going....

Last Week's Winner:

Last week, in response to my challenge to describe a character strictly by the contents of his pockets/her purse, we had 3 takers: Steven G, Dee and Mrs. Mullet, from Frogs in my Formula (a hilarious blog -- if you've never been, she's definitely worth a look-in).

Each of them left me wanting to know more about their character, which is exactly what a character description should do, so bravo!

Next Week's Prompt:

For next week, we're going to try a variation on a prompt Katrina Kittle, Dayton's own bestselling novelist, who's teaching the fiction class I'm currently attending, used this week.

Choose one of the following personas: A ballerina OR a surgeon. In that persona, describe a fight that broke out at a night club.

The Rules:
1) Must be 100 words or less.
2) Must be posted by Wednesday midnight Eastern time.


  1. I'm just trying to get over the fact that there's a woman called Ben!

  2. A protagonist is the main character (the central or primary personal figure) of a literary, theatrical, cinematic, video game, or musical narrative, around whom the events of the narrative's plot revolve and with whom the audience is intended to share the most empathy. The word "protagonist" derives from the Greek πρωταγωνιστής (protagonistes), "one who plays the first part, chief actor."[1] In the theatre of Ancient Greece, three actors played all of the main dramatic roles in a tragedy; the leading role was played by the protagonist, while the other roles were played by deuteragonist and the tritagonist.

  3. I have never known a female Ben before but from now on I'll be on the lookout.

  4. Oh, I had a client named Jerry before, an only child obviously...

    Love the story, and I should be joining back on your prompts...I am working with an editor again, and she helped me with a few things...

    I am really glad you are doing this girlfriend! I can smell the polish remover now, and look at my peeling toe nail polish...

  5. I love writing surprises like that! They are so fun. I seem to get my best ideas in the shower or when I'm just about to go to sleep (annoying)....

    much love

  6. It's gotta be a good sign that the characters are starting to "decide" for themselves what's going to happen. Good luck with the novel.

    And I love the promt. I'll be waiting to read the entries.

  7. Much luck with the novel. You are one talented lady!

  8. Glad the novel is going well. Rooting for you.

  9. Dad?

    What just happened?

    You just died, Dad.

    I never had a son. Who are you?

    I’m the son you thought you never had who became a surgeon.

    Son? You were my doctor tonight! You were just operating on me, weren’t you?

    Yes, Dad.

    I.. uh… don’t know you. I’m sorry…Am I in heaven?

    No, Daddy…..neither am I… and neither are you.

    NO! NO! I was at the Snakeskin Lounge and got into a stupid fight! I was drunk and had to punch some stripper in the face. She stabbed me…oh god.

    You punched my Mom…for the last time, Daddy.


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