Footprints in the Hallway

The Website of C.L. Mannarino

Tag: book

Describing Shame, and #ROW80

It’s telling your best friend something private and secret about yourself, and then listening to her reprimand you for even having those thoughts at all.

It’s the hot-cold flush you feel afterwards, like the room is too big and too small all at once.

It’s the way you hold your hands in your lap, averting your eyes, trying to shrink until she forgets what you said, forgives what you said, so maybe you can, too.

It’s the gulf you feel growing in the space between you as you finish whatever it was you were doing — why are we even here? you ask yourself, watching the TV flicker and the evening light grow dim. oh yeah, you remember, shaking your head a little bit and not enough to attract her attention, thank god. we were hanging out. — and wondering how fast you can make the day end without seeming rude.

It’s the way the blood drains from your cheeks whenever she talks to you for the rest of the night. It’s the way your words stick to your throat as you try not to ask, are you still mad, any time she asks you a question and you have to find a way to come back to center, bring yourself back to the room, warm up to her again, act like nothing’s wrong.

It’s the way she won’t look at you for more than two seconds. It’s the wondering if she’s embarrassed, too, and then the voice in the back of your head hissing, of course she’s not, you idiot. what does she have to be embarrassed about?

It’s the wooden feeling you get when she hugs you goodbye at the end of the night. It’s the regret you feel watching her leave, the sadness you feel that there’s so much between you that’s now locked up and closed in and can never be let out again. It’s the gladness that she’s gone, and the fear, to:

Will she take what you said to the grave? Will she let it out? Is it really as bad as I think it is? How long do I have to lock it up for?

#ROW80 update:

Right now, Swans is still going pretty strong, and I’m fairly confident that the real bones of the story are there. It’s going to need way more meat, though. Tons of reorganizing, too. But this is okay! Bare bones drafts are fine by me. I tend to need to add more later, anyway, because my ideas come too fast sometimes, so when characters start talking, all those surrounding nuances get lost.

I’m learning that I love first drafts for their sheer messiness. I love them for being the place where I can tell, not show, the story. And I love revision for being the slower, more methodical place where I can study what’s going on, make sense of it, and then recreate it so that you all can get the best of everything in the story.

Also, I’m working on a quick intro short story for my second book in the Almost Human series. Let me clarify: it’s a deleted scene that I deleted before I got to write it because it didn’t start close enough to book 2’s main story line to keep around. But now, I’m writing it up, and I’m not sure what exactly I’m going to do with it just yet, except that if you’re a news friend, you’ll be the first to read it when it’s done. <3

Like this? Then come get up close and personal with me and my projects on the first Monday of every month.

Describing Purple, Plus

Copyright © 2013 C.L. Mannarino
All rights reserved.

It is patience. It is dreams on the cusp of sleep. It is the sun falling out of the sky as the dark cloak of night spreads over the earth. It is the taste of fresh grapes straight off the vine. It is the smell of vineyards, heady and hot in the late afternoon sun. It is the fields of lavender, the fragrance rising in a low cloud and blown around by the wind. It is the shy violet that grows off to the side of the three leaf clovers in my backyard. It is the soft purr of a kitten against your hand, it’s downy, cashmere pelt warm against your skin.


PS–I think I’m going to stick with describing colors for my Wednesday short stories because I’ve kind of warmed up to the idea of them. Plus, I lost steam for my idea to write about Clare and Shay, at least for right now.

Also, for the month of July, I’m planning to storm-battle my way through the romance book (Brambles) so that I have a complete first copy to revise in August. Naturally, I feel like I need to spend more time on that than on, say, blogging. No, that doesn’t mean I’m walking away entirely because, if I’m going to be honest, the thought of not maintaining this blog is a bit scary. I like posting here. I hope you all get something out of my blogging, be it information, entertainment, or just a reminder of what day of the week it is. (Although if the latter is the case, then someone’s gotten confused before and I apologize for that. I’m getting better at announcing what I’m doing before I do it.) So, with that in mind, I’m still going to post twice a week, but my intention is to write shorter entries. It’ll just be easier to stay faithful to the blog while getting my writing completed.

PPS–This also means that Dusk One edits are going on hiatus for the remainder of the month, which is what I’m assuming is the amount of time it’s going to take to get Brambles into workable shape. (I’ve mentioned I get a little ambitious, yes? I might just be biting off more than I can chew with this deadline…I’ll let you know.)