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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Writing Experiment #28 - Ryann Manuscript Part 25

This is number twenty-eight in a series of posts where I document the complete process of writing a novella - Day By Day!


I am documenting (via my blog) the complete start to finish experience of writing a novella that I will be releasing for FREE once it is written and edited.

Ryann is the story of a thirteen year-old girl who works as a servant for a tyrant of a master, and longs for the day when she can buy her freedom. The novella will serve as the introduction to a new fantasy series I will start writing in 2013.

I will be writing approximately 900 words per day and I will post each day's writing the following morning, unedited, on my blog. This means you get to see my draft with all its original spelling mistakes, bad grammar, and clumsy sentences

The timeline for the experiment is as follows:
  • Plotting, Characters and Scene Outlines - April 1to April 20 - COMPLETE
  • First Draft Manuscript - April 21 to May 18 - IN PROGRESS
  • First Manuscript Edits - June 19 to June 23
  • Reader Proofs - June 24 to July 14
  • Final Manuscript Edits - July 15 to July 19


Today's Date: May 16th
Progress: Day 25 complete. Following is the day's writing...



Ryann sat on her bed and idly picked a few pieces of straw from her clothes. What was she going to do? Bramwel wasn’t going to fight her. All he did was laugh at her. It wasn’t fair. She looked up at the wall and counted the marks. “Sixty-one,” she said out loud. Just three silver coins. It would take forever to buy her freedom. No, the only way was to fight him. But how? He would never take her seriously. Like he said, she was just a girl. Just a girl. “But this girl can fight,” she said under her breath. “Just give me the chance.”
She got to her feet and made her way along the corridor and out through the kitchen, into the gardens. Once outside she headed off in a trot along the path until she came to the gap in the hedges. She stopped, but the old man was nowhere to be seen today. She hadn’t really seen him since her last lesson. So she set off running, content to be exercising. She needed a plan. She needed to convince Bramwel to fight her. She stopped and leaned against the castle wall. Maybe she could speak to Lord Cala; he seemed nice enough toward her. She smiled. Yes, perhaps that was what she would do. If she just explained how mean Bramwel was then he would understand.
With a new sense of determination Ryann set off running once more, trying to complete another complete lap of the castle walls. When she was done she collapsed against the kitchen door and breathed deeply. She was soaked through to the skin from sweat, but she felt good. Very good. She pushed the door to the kitchen open and stepped inside.

“My, you look worn out,” said cook, looking across at Ryann from beside the stove. “Come sit yourself down.” She wiped her hands on her apron and took a few steps toward Ryann.
“I’m fine, cook. I’ve just been running, that’s all. I needed to clear my head. Running helps me think straight.” Ryann took a seat at the kitchen table and poured herself a glass of water from a pitcher.
“Just look at you. And we’ve just bought you new clothes. You’re going to need new ones all over again.” Cook reached out a hand and pulled Ryann to her feet. “All skin and bones. There’s nothing of you. We need to feed you up a little.” She pulled at Ryann’s dress and made a tutting sound. “Just hangs off you. No good at all.”
Ryann smiled and pulled away from cook. “I’m fine, cook. I’m fine. I’ve been eating more than enough food. It’s all the running and exercising I’ve been doing. That’s what’s made me skinny.” She gulped down her water and put the empty glass down on the table. “See?” Ryann pulled the rope tighter around her dress and smiled again. “It’ll fit a little longer. I don’t want to have to buy any more clothes.”
Cook shook her head. “Maybe you’re right there, little one. Perhaps someone can just alter it a little for you. I’ll ask the housekeeper.” She turned back toward the stove once more. “And you had better get to the master’s room and tidy it up before dinner.”
“Yes, cook,” Ryann replied, already dreading the rest of the evening.

Ryann breathed a sigh of relief as she entered Bramwel’s room. It was empty; although it wasn’t exactly tidy. How he could make such a mess of the room every single day was beyond her. She bent down and picked up two books that were lying on the floor. As she stood up she noticed his horse. The white toy horse that had been hidden out of view, under Bramwel’s table. She put the books down and reached out to pick it up. She brought the horse up toward her face to examine it and turned it over in her hands.
It was certainly a well made piece. Hours had been spent carving the details into it. It looked quite old, as though from constant use. Of course, that was all Bramwel ever thought about; his damn toy horse. She turned around and threw it as hard as she could toward the far wall. It hit the wall with force and splintered, sending pieces to the ground. She smiled.
“What are you doing?” Bramwel shouted, stepping into the room and following Ryann’s gaze across the room. “What has happened?”
Ryann stood speechless as Bramwel ran across the room and gathered up the three main pieces of what had been his beautiful white toy horse.
Bramwel turned to face Ryann again, holding out the broken horse in his hands. “What have you done?”
He looked almost ready to cry. Ryann could see a tear welling up in his eye and she wanted to smile. She wanted to laugh. But instead she looked down toward the floor, trying to control herself. “It was an accident, master.”
Bramwel walked over to his bed and dropped the pieces onto it. “This was no accident. You have gone too far this time, Ryann.”
Ryann looked up again and saw the redness in Bramwel’s face and the look of anger that covered it. She knew he would grab his whip. There wasn’t much time. What should she do? There was only one thing; to get out. She turned and ran from Bramwel’s room as fast as she could. She ran through the corridors. She ran through the kitchen. She pulled open the door to the gardens and she ran down the path. Bramwel was not going to use his whip on her. Never again. At last she stopped running and bent down to catch her breath. She allowed herself a smile. “And he will never play with his toy horse again either,” she said.

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