I like the occasional writerly gauntlet being hurled my way. So today, I’m taking up the latest challenge.
I noticed on the Goodreads (Annie Gracie) website: “there’s a new twitter thing going around between writers. When you get tagged, you’re supposed to go to the current manuscript, to page 7 or page 77, count down 7 lines and then post the next 7 lines of your manuscript on your blog. Then tweet about it and tag 7 more writers, including #Lucky7 in the tweet.”
And now a big thanks to Ali (@AliBacon), who has tagged and included yours truly, too. The one Ali sent me was about posting “the next seven sentences”, so I have stuck to that. Does every sentence do its work, asked Ali. See Ali’s example and her synopsis of A Kettle Of Fish over on her blog, Between The Lines.
Like Ali, I have had to refer to the first draft of my most recently completed novel. Otherwise, I had bits of this and that, short stories (not 77 pages long) or I have a half formed children’s novel in roughly sketched, non-sequential scenes and that wouldn’t have done because I don’t know yet what would be the true page 77! Pedantic? Me? Never!
The current WIP is very much at the research/outline/synopsis stage. So I’ve chosen the last complete draft novel, written in November, and variously called To Do or To Die, Twenty Four Seven Three Six Five, and A Crappy First Draft. Actually, that last one is beginning to sound like the most appropriate title!
On looking at mine, the next line after my seventh sentence contained reference to something that, taken out of context, looks utterly incongruous in this scene, so I’m only too glad we weren’t doing Lucky 9s or 13s. Here we are, then:
“I’m a changed man,” he said, holding out his hands as though offering me a new product, “and prison did me the world of good. Never did an honest day’s work in my life till I went there.”
“Hmm,” I nodded, chewing my lip.
“Full of failed suicide bombers and terrorists, though, Belmarsh,” he nudged me as I cringed, squirmed and contorted, arms folded and legs in a twist, “but, the upside was…” and here he leaned in, grinning, “I had some brilliant lessons in bomb-making.”
He laughed and winked as if I, of all people, would somehow enjoy his sick joke.
At that moment, I vividly remembered how pathetic he’d seemed across the courtroom, how I’d finally got him locked up: those seconds when the judge had turned to me and asked if I wanted him incarcerated, or not.
In the end, it had been that simple, and I’d been convinced I would never see him again.
That’s it! It was interesting to do. Thanks, Ali. Any comment welcome. I’ve probably overdone the body language in this seven-sentence clip. Elsewhere, I’ve completely forgotten about it. Ha.
Now I have to challenge seven more lucky writers to post their #Lucky7. And they are (this is the hard bit!):
@BerwickBabs (co. Barbara Henderson)
@Gerald Hornsby (Gerald Hornsby)
@mariekreft (Marie Kreft)
@RobynLeatherman (Robyn Leatherman)
@melindamcguire (Melinda McGuire)
@beccajcampbell (Becca Campbell)
@AlisonWells (Alison Wells)
I must admit to agonising over this list but there’s no obligation to take up the challenge. Please do let me know if you do, as I’m already curious about your #lucky7 (or I wouldn’t have chosen you) – and no cheating!
Number 7 graphic from: http://mysticalnumbers.com/Number_7.html