Friday, June 18, 2010

Breaking The Rules Blogfest

Ah, another blogfest! What could be more fun?! This one is hosted by the lovely Elizabeth Mueller. Participants are supposed to share "writing before you learned the rules," or "WIP just to spite the rules." I'm entering a piece from a current WIP which laughs in the face of the rules.

This selection is the very first bit of a new sci-fi novel I'm writing (um, sorry it's so long) which breaks the rules in these ways:

A) It's written in present tense. I know there's no hard and fast rule against writing in present tense, but it's not so commonly done so I wanted to try it.
B) The story is written in first person POV for both of the main characters. I wanted to write in first person POV but I couldn't decide which character's POV to write from, then I thought, why not both? I've clearly separated sections of POV and made distinct voices and so far it's working beautifully and I love the story. (This selection is the male MC's POV).
C) I'm totally writing this story as a pantser. I have no freaking idea what's going to happen next until I sit down and write. It's awesome fun!

I really should have known better than to accept Magda’s offer of freedom. I should have just served the rest of my sentence, however unpleasant, and been done with it. But no, she dangles sparkly, shiny freedom in my face and like a trained animal I salivate and wag my sorry tail and jump at it. I didn’t even ask what I had to do. I just said yes.

“Jaska, darling,” she says, her voice sultry, as if that will somehow get to me. Which it usually does. “I have a job for you. And if you promise to do it for me I’ll grant you your freedom.”

Her green eyes gauge my reaction and when she sees me perk a satisfied smile slides across her red lips. I curse under my breath. I really need to work on my poker face.

“What do you want me to do?” I ask, knowing it’s going to cost me something big.

She waves a red-nailed finger at me as if I’ve been a bad boy and chuckles in her sex-goddess voice. I can’t help reacting. Gods, I hate her. “Oh no, honey, you have to promise me first.”

“Why should I trust you?”

She steps closer and runs her finger down my chest and I grab her hand, stopping it before she gets any lower. She’s made it clear what she wants since she bought my contract three years ago and dragged me here to this gods-forsaken outworld. I’ve been fighting her ever since. I’m just the next in a long line of contracts she’s bought, but I suspect I’m the first who hasn’t rolled over and jumped in her bed just because she winked. This only makes her more determined. Sure, she’s gorgeous at 5 - 11, long black hair any guy would kill to get his hands in, those come-hither-and-I’ll-make-it-so-worth-your-while green eyes, and curves to die for, but I’ve never heard the truth from her lips once and the fact that she’s so deep into the syndicate is enough for me to keep her at arm’s length.

Don’t get me wrong. A little crime never scared me. How do you think I ended up with a criminal contract in the first place?

“You have to trust me because you don’t have any choice,” she purrs.

“If I don’t have any choice, why offer me my freedom?” I ask. She just smiles and I can see the answer in her eyes. “You don’t really expect me to survive this little mission of yours, do you?”

She suddenly looks all innocent. “I never said that, pet.” She bats her black lashes my way. I cringe inside when she calls me that knowing that as long as she holds my contract that’s essentially what I am. And she knows it.

“Cut the crap, Magda. You wouldn’t offer me my freedom if you thought you’d actually have to pay up. It’s just to sweeten the pot so I’ll be more motivated. That’s it, isn’t it?”

Her smile turns sweet and she turns her back on me and sashays across the room to her desk. Pissed off or not, it’s tough not to appreciate that action. She picks up a scrap of paper then turns and props that fine ass on her desk, crosses her legs then crooks her finger at me, reeling me in like a fish. I don’t go immediately, but damn it she knows I will eventually so I just go to get it over with.

“Mmmm. You know me so well,” she swings her leg casually, her high heel dangling suggestively from her toe. I get just close enough to reach for the paper scrap in her hand where it’s hanging like her shoe between her first and second fingers. But just before I can snag it, she pulls it back. “You promise?” What a tease.

I roll my eyes at her and resist the urge to grab her by the neck and squeeze. “Yes,” I say between gritted teeth.
She extends the note to me again and I rip it from her fingers. It just has a name and planet on it: Gil Hjalmarr, Thyr.

I laugh at her. “Seriously? I don’t even know what you want yet, but it must be worth a lot if you want it from Gil.”

“He has a map I want.”

“A map? That’s it?”


“To what?”

“You don’t need to worry about that. Just get me the map.”

“Well, it would make it a mite easier to find if I know what the map’s to.”

“You’ll know it when you see it.”

I scowl at her. She’s not making this easy, as usual. It’s like she wants me to get killed. My punishment for not submitting to her?

“Did you ask him nice? I mean, when you ask nice most guys trip all over themselves to give you what you want.”

“You know as well as I do Gil isn’t most guys,” she says, a grumpy warning in her eyes. “And you haven’t given me everything I want, either."

I laugh at her, genuinely this time. I ignore her blatant hint about giving her what she wants. That’s not going to happen. But I know Gil. He’s leader of the biggest criminal network in the galaxy. He makes Magda’s business dealings look like a sweets stand on the neighborhood corner. He’s humanoid but without all the inconvenient emotional baggage most of us lug around. Basically, he would be immune to Magda’s favorite forms of persuasion.

“So you didn’t even ask at all?”

“Oh, I asked. I needed to make sure he had what I wanted. Which he does. But of course he wouldn’t give it up.” Even her pout is pretty.

I sigh. “So you want me to steal this map from him?”

“Yes, I do.”

“And you give me your word of honor you’ll deactivate my contract once I bring you this map?”

“Indeed I will, darling. You’ll be a free man, two whole years early.”

“If I live.”

“If you live.”

I pretend to consider her offer, even though I know damn well that she knows I’ve already made up my mind. But a man’s gotta have a little pride, even if he is a contract slave to the most notorious vixen in the entire galaxy.

Okay, so there you have it. Now go check out the rest of the entries and enjoy!!


Raquel Byrnes said...

Awesome imagery. I like that she is so dangerous and he knows it but can't help himself.

Tessa Conte said...

Hehe that's not so bad! Ignoring Elizabeth's list of rules I like this...

I'd like to know where you're going...writing stories as 'pantser' is quite exiting, isn't it? Not my usual way of doing it, but I've just started a story completely without plot, starting just from one's going ok so far...

elizabeth mueller said...

Oooh, seeexxxy! I love how she has him so eagerly wrapped around her little finger--he's so cute, too!

;0) I'm quite the panster writer, too. I think pansters have tons of juice to make tons of intriguing stories. ;)

Thank you for participating my blogfest, I really appreciate it!
Sorry I didn't get to your entry sooner, I'm at the library editing my WIPs away--a very rare treat!! *Sigh*

RaShelle said...

I liked it and I like first person present. Aside from a few errors here and there. Good stuff.

Babydoll said...

I like it. I'd like to read more. It's very intriguing!

drea moore said...

I like the back and forth and the internal dialogue informing us each step of the way :D I noticed you also left off tags all together at one point, not that it was particularly difficult to follow :D But that's something I always get called on :( Really intriguing story snippet and character, certainly makes me want to read more.

Kris & Kels said...

This was cool, I like how you set it up, and I was intrigued by the story-line.

<3 Kelsey Leigh

Suzie said...

Ooohhhhhh... what a fun and sexy piece!! I love it! :)

Dawn Embers said...

Nice work there. Kind of like the ending, how he references the woman. Vixen isn't something I'd often use but it seems so fitting right now. It does seem like a good story that might start better after the deal is made and flashback or something. But I'm interested as to the deal and just stealing a map. He's in for some trouble, that's for sure.

Donna Hole said...

Some cliches, run ons, and repetitive musings. But all in all, you're pretty good at this pantser thing :)

Until recently, I didn't know writing in the present tense was a no-no. Although my novel is set in the past - contemporary past, its not a historical - it is my character's present, and I write it that way. If I never get a request for a partial, I may rethink that rebellious attitude, but for now . .

I'm ready to read more of this. As long as only one character has 1st POV, that is. The story and characters are engaging, the tone is light but adventurous. There's a lot of good writing in this.

Keep it up. Edit when its all complete.


Andrew Rosenberg said...

Fun stuff
Would like some setting and some bearings here, but interesting characters!

Nishant said...

Awesome imagery.
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