Wednesday, June 24, 2009

WIP Wednesday

I am working on a contemporary novel (still Middle Grade), as yet untitled, and it has been so much fun. My last work was historical and included vast amounts of research. Hooray for less research!




So, on this sunny Wednesday, I thought I'd leave a snippit from the start of the novel. I am only on page 10 of this work, but I have a personal writing retreat planned for this coming weekend and hope to get lots of good writing behind me.

Forgive the lousy formatting. I blame it all on blogger.



Jade pulled aside the living room curtain and peered out into her
backyard. “He’s digging again.”



“Leave your brother alone,” her mother said without turning away from the television program. Drew Carey’s The Price Is Right was on, which happened to be her mother’s favorite show. Jade’s mother could name the price of just about anything – from a round tin of Turtle Wax to a brand new sailboat. Jade thought it was the weirdest thing for her mother to know, given the fact that she hadn’t held down a steady job in Jade’s living memory. Shopping - for car wax or sailboats - required money they did not have.



“I’m not doing anything,” Jade said.



Her mother raised a single eyebrow.



“I’m not,” she insisted further. “He could dig to China, for all I care.”



“Four eighty-nine!” Her mother hollered at the program. “Four eighty-nine, everyone knows the price of that detergent!” She threw her arms up in disgust. “Idiots!"


The newest of Drew’s Beauties flipped over a little square below the box of detergent. Black letters showed the price - $4.89.


By her mother’s imaginary account, she had won exactly twenty seven showcase showdowns on The Price is Right. She also claimed winning two trips to Europe, nineteen braaand new cars and even a his and hers set of motor scooters.



Jade turned back to the window. Her brother Paul was chest deep in a hole and digging deeper all the time. His long, jet hair clung to his cheeks in sweaty strands and the black eyeliner he wore was smudged and streaked. He looked up for a moment and caught his little sister’s gaze.



She quickly dropped the curtain.


20 comments:

MeganRebekah said...

Cute start!
Love the Price is Right reference - I grew up watching that show every summer!

Suzanne said...

Evidence of greatness. Brava!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

You have set the scene well with mother whose view of the world comes from a chair in front of the TV and a brother whose issues are hard to ignore, although mother somehow does. I'm intrigued and want more. Super start.

Tess said...

This is my frist draft...always scary to put a first draft out for someone to see, but I think the characters are coming across as intended so that's something at least. Thanks for the kind comments :D

Amy Allgeyer Cook said...

You are a writing goddess. As I said before, I am completely intrigued by Paul and his hole.

B.J. Anderson said...

OoooOOOoo. This is cool! And I love the details--especially the Price is Right thing. Awesome stuff. And the brother seems a bit dangerous. I want more . . .

Amy Allgeyer Cook said...

ooo...i'm thinking that sounded a little dirty.

sorry.

Tess said...

Amy- hahahahahahahahaahahaha, I didn't even pick up on that, but now you mention it, it does sound a little twisted.

I like it ;)

BJ - thanks, friend.

lotusgirl said...

I'm intrigued too. Paul is fascinating already. Mom needs a smack apparently. Can't wait to see where this goes.

Jody Hedlund said...

Must be nice not to have to do the research this time! I'm curious to know if it's typical for YA writers to switch YA genres--from historical to contemp.? Just curious! In adult fiction, I'm reading that we should pick a genre and stick to it--so I'm planning to stick with historical (and also because it's my first love). Thanks for sharing a bit of your writing!

SJDuvall said...

Hi, I found your blog through Scott's. I just had to say that it is a very interesting and attention grabbing beginning. Hope to read more soon (either on your blog or on the shelf).

Kate Karyus Quinn said...

Oooh, great start! I love the Price is Right stuff - especially the "braaand new cars". To know your Price is Right so well though you must have done a little research, and the best kind too - sitting in front of the TV;)

L.T. Elliot said...

Oooh. Intrigue. I'm a little creeped out by the brother. What's he digging for and why? Hmmmm. (The Price is Right bit is hilarious and a great quirk for that mom. =])

Tess said...

lotusgirl - yes, mama needs a good smack. that's the perfect way to put it :)

Jody - good question. I'll start by saying I write Middle Grade, not YA. The Literary Lab did an awesome post (written by me, laugh laugh) about the difference if anyone is interested. Anyway, we can bump from historical to contemporary w/out trouble. In fact, I hope to write more historical in the future but my agent strongly suggested contemporary for my next work. I guess it's easier to place in today's market.

SJ - hello! and welcome. Make yourself at home :D

Kate - yes, lots of fun TV research. I grew up watching price is right over the summers...big fan of old Bob Barker here. I can't wait till this WIP looks like the WIP you just showed on your blog - all pretty and printed in a box.

LT - good. Paul is creepy. Don't tell that he is partially based on a mixture of my brother and my friends brother. Shhhh...

Robyn said...

Tess, loved reading this great start. And your agent wisely advised you to shift to something different. It's my understanding, the market is flooded with historical fiction right now. :)

Jody Hedlund said...

Hi again Tess! Thanks for sharing that with me, both here and on my blog! That's so intriguing to me that middle grade (sorry about that!) authors can flip genres. You'd think for instance if you build a fan base with middle grade fantasy, your readers would be looking forward to your next fantasy. Or historical or whatever. At least that's what we're told with adult fiction, but it's so interesting how different the markets are. Thanks for sharing! I learn something new everyday!

Davin Malasarn said...

This is a great scene, Tess. I love that dialog! You do a nice job of revealing the characters, and they are unique and interesting!

Kristal Shaff said...

Great so far. :o)

Lisa and Laura said...

This is fantastic!! Love it and can't wait to read more.

Matt said...

That's great! I look forward to reading more. Wonderful start here!