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A collection of snippets of the books I write and, occasionally, my life and the things that inspire my writing...

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Weekend Writing Warriors: March 10, 2013



Week 6: "Dirt and ashes..."

Welcome gr8ters! Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly blog-hop. Each week, participants sign up HERE at Weekend Writing Warriors, then post 8 sentences of their work, published or unpublished, to go live between 12:00 noon Saturday, and 9:00 AM Sunday EST.  Then we visit each other, read, comment, critique, encourage--all those great things that do a solitary writer's heart good.

Give it a try--we're a pretty nice bunch of people.  :-)

This week, returning to my WIP, ATNS, and using the random scrolling method (I give Kate Warren complete credit for coining the term for that method) I've landed about one half of the way through the story.

Rissa has been training with the sword for over a month. The method the group is using to teach her is simple and brutal. Any of them can (and do) draw on her anytime, anyplace, on any given day-- with very exceptions. They have all been warned to not draw blood on her. All have complied, but Dhurstan has come as close as possible without earning punishment from Cuylrh's swords.

Rissa's exhausted, thin as a rail, and has been pushed to her limit by Dhurstan's  incessant tormenting. The ultimate in waking on the wrong side of the bed furs occurs- finally giving Rissa the moxie to do what she must. Best one of the group with her sword.


"Growling, Rissa drove forward--her elbows bent in a two-handed powergrip like she was wielding a Louisville Slugger.

She met Durstan’s steel with her own. 

For what seemed like an eternity, their motionless and deadly standoff of cold metal opposing cold metal played out, finally brought to an abrupt end when Rissa dropped and rolled.

While Dhurstan’s broadsword sliced the ground beside her, barely missing her hair, she grabbed a handful of dirt and ashes. 

In a fluid motion, she scrambled to her feet and emptied her fist, flinging it at Dhurstan’s face. 

His unarmed hand flew through the cloud of caustic dust, swiping at his eyes.

Seizing the opportunity, she shifted effortlessly--now second nature to her, attacking with the balance and grace of a dancer merged with a sweaty, enraged wildcat.   

Sparks flashed when she slammed his sword with hers--her  undersized weapon wielded by the most unmanly of hands, lifting his up and out, and launching it from his hand. "


Dhurstan getting his. How 'bout that?  I'll pick up here next week, rather than random scrolling.


That's it.  What jumps out at you, good or bad. I'd love to hear it and am truly grateful for every bit of criticism, opinion, and shared wisdom..  Thank you so much for visiting! 
Note* If you are launching a book, offering one for free promotion, or  have a blogpost you'd like shared, tweet me @Teresa_Willow and I will retweet it for you. :-)







48 comments:

  1. You covered all bases with your gorgeous description. I was held captive in the moment.

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    1. Thanks, Charmaine! I messaged you through facebook, (look in your "others" folder" in messages). I tried to leave a comment on your blog on Sunday, and this evening. Your snippet was wonderful. :-)

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  2. Nice action scene -- descriptive, well-paced, and you do a nice job working Rissa's personality into her tactics. Nicely done!

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  3. All right, so happy she's starting to win once in a while. The fight scene was beautifully described, could visualize it. Excellent excerpt!

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  4. Great description and nicely paced, Teresa! Love how she gets the upper hand.

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  5. Really great, clear description, and vivid action. Love it!

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  6. Sounds like the training is working.

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    1. It is. But it took more than training. It took for Marissa to want it. ;-) Thanks, Sue Ann.

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  7. I love it when the tables get turned on a bully :)

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    1. Thanks, Ian! Yes...the bully gets his. :-)

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  8. Fabulous, descriptive excerpt! Rissa growling was excellent, as was the "deadly standoff of cold metal against cold metal". Bravo, Teresa! :-) Glad you'll be continuing with this, next time.

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  9. Wow, absolutely gorgeous word pictures: "deadly standoff of cold metal opposing cold metal" and "the balance and grace of a trained dancer merged with a sweaty, enraged wildcat" are real gems. Great snippet!

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  10. Moxie and dirt -- works every time! I could feel her rage and exhaustion, and I love that you pushed her to her limits and then some to get her where she needed to go in order to succeed. That's right, torture that character, Teresa! ;D

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    1. lol...who'd a thunk it? Teresa grows up to be a torturer??? :-) Thanks, Monica!

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  11. Were you trying to demonstrate Dhurstan's over-confidence with the phrase "her undersized weapon wielded by the most unmanly of hands." I like it!

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    1. Yes, in a way, that's it, John. It's a patriarchal culture on the verge of breaking at the seams. And along comes a woman from Earth who didn't want to be the face of change, didn't want to be the catalyst, but out of necessity, that is her destiny.

      Thanks. :-) !

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  12. Go Rissa! Go Rissa! Excellent excerpt, lots of action, the kind that makes you think, "Yeah! That's what I'm talking 'bout right there!" Very well done.

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    1. Haha! Yeppers, right here! Thanks, HS! :-)

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  13. Nicely done. I could feel the action.

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  14. Kickass snippet! I could see the whole thing play out. Great job!

    ~Joyce Scarbrough

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  15. All's fair in love and kicking chauvinist butt. Excellent eight!

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    1. lol, yes, chauvinist butt indeed! :-) Thanks, Sarah!

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  16. Great action scene. I love it when a woman can kick butt!

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    1. Thanks, Gem! She is a shrinking violet for so long, until she's pushed to stand on her own two feet. :-)

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  17. I loved "a trained dancer merged with a sweaty, enraged wildcat". You had me in a standing cheer at the end.

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    1. Thanks, Carol! I'm so glad you cheered for her! :-)

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  18. Love it! He certainly deserves it. The language is beautiful and so atmospheric as well. Awesome eight, Teresa!

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  19. I have to say I'm glad he gets his stuff handed to him. He's pushed her enough. Great fight scene, Teresa. :)

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    1. Thanks, Siobhan! It subdues him in one respect, but having been such a harsh detractor of Rissa's, will have it's consequences, soon... :-)

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  20. Whoa, Rissa is no light weight! Little stature aside, she's clearly not to be trifled with! Fantastic energy and details. The pace was riveting. Looking forward to next week!

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    1. Thanks, JM! :-) And I'll see you next week! :-)

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  21. One of the things I"ve always loved about fantasy was the length of their sentences. Each sentence was almost poetic, fleshing out a scene so easily I had no problem picturing what was going on. I get that every time I read yours. :)

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    1. Thanks, Marie. Sometimes I'm torn, wanting to go with shorter sentences in action scenes to add urgency to the situation. ~sigh~ the more I know, the less I know. :-) Thanks for your encouraging words! :-)

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  22. I get such a clear visual from this. I like that she's growing into a stronger person because of so much hardship.

    Am wondering, though: you say she's been training for over a month, is that long enough to have gained the kind of grace and balance you mention? For me, even if she stumbled now & then, I'd still be cheering her!

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    1. Marcia, excellent observation. The things we miss with our work. Better she's developed some skills, but downplay any grace. Yikes. She's just learned, but he's been swinging a sword all of his life.

      Good eye! Thank you. :-)

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  23. It's not too late to share at WW Bloggers at www.wordlesswednesdaybloggers.blogspot.com. Hope you'll join us!

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  24. I'm catching up on two weeks at the same time -- but read this one first so I knew what was going on in the second. (Too impatient to comment before finishing o.O)

    You have done such an amazing job with this scene Teresa. Can't wait to see more :)

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