Where’s Draft #4? Cut, cut, cut: How (NOT) to Write a Practice Novel, CFoF, Book 1: Beginnings

Now I know: always write your synopsis, and a rough draft Query Letter, BEFORE you start writing your novel!

No 4th draft, but I did:  Rm ‘Angel Thought-Forms’  (there goes my Wiccan training), catalytic over-the-top verbiage, and even whole chapters of important but possibly melodramatic anger-at-being-abused-as-a-child-and-blamed-for-self-pity angelic discussions, like:

1.) “And I can feel all of you, covering all of my body, even within and without, my Kind and unbearably Beautiful Creatrix.  You seem to flow all throughout me, and your warmth, I fear, will melt me into your wings.”  as the woman said this, she found an odd image coming into her mind of a being, human-like, but neither male nor female, head surrounded by a golden light, with white coverings, and large wings.  Had her Creatrix always appeared to have these several sets of soft multicolored wings, she wondered?  ”

and

2.) ““No, My Love, this is not the end, but rather, only the beginning.  Await,” whispered the Creatrix, “and let me show you how much more is to come.  In time, I hope to go from being a Bearer of Light to become, through you, a catalyst for illumination.  Over time, you should find your own light, and show it to me.””

and finally

3.)


Chapter 14. “Harp Players and Harpies -Harps, ALL”
“Waiting for death to free her … Heroic deeds lending life once more…“
-from “The Book Of The Catalyst Of Illumination”

“Hey, Harp, nice to see you again.”

“Be careful, or they will start confusing the good guys with the bad guys, as they used to say.”

“No matter, they can’t tell the difference between us, and we’re all on the same team, now, anyway.  Right?  What are you doing here in Janoj? I haven’t seen you since you were guarding that blob, back West.  Remember, the one that the humans never even bothered to give one of their silly names, when he was born?  How did that one go?”

“Oh, you mean my last charge, the poor servant who was wrongly accused of stealing?  Well, not so well actually, he ended up being tried and executed.  Since their law also requires torture for any confession to be valid, naturally he confessed to the theft, and was then executed.  These human beings are really starting to worry me.  Anyway, my next charge was this one, born here in Janoj.  ”

“Yeah, and you seem to have had a sex change, I see.  So how about this one, you like the blob you’re guarding now?  What is she like, is it this one you have charge over now?  Hey, not too bad, long hair, fair skin, not too skinny like these waifs the blobs seem to prefer over here nowadays.  Not bad at all.  Hey, would you like to trade blobs and take mine?  I can take good care of yours here, no problem protecting her.  She will be safe in my care, beneath the spread of my wings, and my skirts too…”

“OK, that is about enough of that.  You know what happened last time you tried having your way with -hey, what’s going on here.  Your ill mannered charge is intimidating my charge!  Go get him to back away and calm down, please.”

“Why?”

“What do you mean, ‘why’ -is it not clear to you that an altercation is about to ensue?”

“And so?”

“If your charge harms my charge, and you do nothing to prevent it, you shall answer…”

“Answer to whom, I wonder.  Our mandate is to report back, try to protect them from themselves, and no to interfere too much.”

“We are also bound to protect them, as much as possible, remember?”

“OK, OK, let me go try to make him see a bit of reason.  He will not harm her, I know him well.  There, you see, words, mere words, he is simply speaking to her, and she will choose whether to make it the altercation you fear.”

“Your charge is provoking her, and you do nothing.  You are aware, and  you must stay his hand before it is too late.”

“Don’t worry my friend, he will be fine.  Now look.  Your, charge seems to be insisting on continuing the confrontation, rather than walking away as she should do now.  Look, she is talking to him, now, she is starting to get upset, you see, she is heated.  Making her point.  She’s going to go over the top…  Here she goes, oh, damn!  She kept her cool!”

“Well, friend, I am sorry to see you so disappointed over my charge’s good behavior.  And just exactly what did you expect her  to do, lose it and start yelling at him?  She wants to rise above it all.  And rightly so.  She is learning, and I rejoice to see this progress.”

“But I want her to let it all out!  I think it will do her some good.  Hey, maybe if I whisper in her ear…”

“Don’t even think about it friend, your charge over here is trolling for a fight.  This probably will not end well.”

“And who says that is a bad thing?  After all, these blobs do need to learn their lessons some kind of way.”

“We are supposed to be protecting them.  Picking fights for them that they can in no way win is not my idea of either help or protection.  Unless one is supposed to learn the lesson of how to pick herself up off the floor, and the other is supposed to learn how to earn more bad karma!”

“But who says a little bad karma won’t do him some good, and she needs to be less sheltered anyway.  Come on, have a little fun!  We only get to see this batch of blobs for a short time, after all.  And besides, they like it this way.  After all, this is the world that they chose to create.  They set it up this way, so they must enjoy all of this fracas.”

”What are you talking about?”

“Look at it this way.  You remember that young woman who walked to the sea, not too far back?”

“Which one, it happens all the time, unfortunately, of course.”

“Exactly my point.  She was beautiful, had men, and the occasional woman, following her around, stopping to exclaim over her beauty, and of course, asking her to have their babies for them.  She was  descended from warriors on one side, and Yuval on the other.”

“You mean the great musician Yuval?”

That one, exactly, and she had even sung a little herself.  One of her young students said she sang like one of us!  Not that we actually sing, but still.  Another friend of  her´s was in the habit of asking her to sing for her, with that ‘glorious voice’ as she put it.  So this girl had no shortage of reason to understand that she was talented.  She even gained admission the academy of Shem and Ever…”

“You’ve been reading those memory curls again!  That was in the last experiment, not this one.”

“Right, sorry, well, she did get into some academy, and was a scholar, acknowledged to be highly intelligent.  With brains, beauty, and lovely voice, and knowing that she had all of this, now why would she walk to the sea?”

“OK, you tell me.  Why did she do it?  She obviously wasn’t terribly practical.”

“Because her guardian kept too much to the letter of our orders, never interfering.”

“And rightly so.”

“Hmpf.  She was never alone, but she never knew that.  Acquaintances spoke to her.  That is, spoke to her, not with her.  But it was not sincere.  While some may have had the best of intentions, all lacked the respect of true friendship.  They offered only the sort of help reserved for the needy, with no  substance.  For her, death was preferable to this self-serving condescension.  She pointed out their behavior, and lost what tenuous support she had had.  Refusing to abandon a community which had in reality already abandoned her, she clung to them, feeling that she was not wanted.  Feeling unloved, she ended her life on her terms, in the sea.”

“Well she must not have had any accomplishments that made her useful to the community.”

“Wrong again.  She spent a decade writing, talking, singing, all to please them, trying to show them how much better they could be.”

“No wonder they did not support her.  She kept poking them in the eye, holier than they were.”

“Trying to inspire them.”

“These blobs can’t be inspired.  They respond with their instincts 99% of the time.”

“That is the shame of it.  She told them how unjust a social system they have created , and tried to explain how they could create a system which empowered and protected all of them, weakest to strongest, and could help each of them reach whatever their potential, however limited or great.”

“No wonder they laughed at her.  An idealist.”

“But this is exactly the same thing that Aclima, now called Artemis…”

“You mean the Queen mother, wife of the ruler of the city?  All the blobs are looking for her right now.”

“Yes, exactly, her.  This is the same thing that she has been saying all along, but of course, being locked up in the palace, she had no one to tell but her servants and her guardian, who told me.  We shall see whether the Lady Artemis can have any influence anywhere else on these human beings, if she survives the hunting parties that are out for her head.”

“Do they know it was her, yet?  They are still saying that Lamej, the sword-maker, killed King Evren.”

“I have not been able to find out yet.  All of the other guardians are still too terrified to talk.  The guardians here in Janoj are nearly as bad as the human beings in their unscrupulousness.  Human, guardian, it almost makes no difference, anywhere.  They are so corrupt all over, it is hard to see how any of them survives.  So, this young woman back West, anyway, she went to her death, poetically, and alone.  Such a shame, such a waste.  And so unnecessary, given that all her guardian had to do was whisper something positive in her ear.  Encourage her in the right path, let her know that she was not ever alone, even for one instant.  But that guardian refused.”

”So the guardian did her job, and in fact did it pretty well, if you ask me.  We are not here to interfere, we are here to report back and maybe try to prevent the worst excesses.  Really what they do to each other is up to them, not us.  How else are the Creator and Creatrix supposed to know what would happen?  They gave them free will for exactly that reason, and this is how that one chose to exercise it.  Pretty good deal, come to think of it.  If you ask me, the level of free will they have is actually better than the deal we get.  Almost no free will, and nothing interesting to do all day but hang around and watch them find new ways to hurt each other.  Sometimes they get more creative and things are a bit more interesting, but in general, I say the sooner this experiment is over with the better.  If I had a say in my existence, I think I could find far more interesting things to do this, when all they are is an experiment to see what they will do when given too much time and free will for their own good.  Now we on the other hand, would do much better with  free will.  Teach them how to find their potential serving us, limited though it may be.  That would do some good.  The annoying ones we could just let fight amongst themselves.  Could be entertaining.”

“Who put you on this duty?  At least when you were guardian of the Dilmun river, you were doing something useful for everyone.”

“I did something useful after that, too, I had a fiery sword, then culled the herds of errant human blobs.  That was a fun and fulfilling assignment, and a nice change of pace from supervising all of those bubble-headed water molecule guardians.  You on the other hand, might have been better off staying in the garden with the tree.”

“That tree went up with the volcano you so deftly used to revive the flaming sword, you git!  Or are you deliberately implying that I would be better off having winked out of existence?”

“Well, yes, as I was saying, a nice vacation.” the harpie smirked,  “You are taking these short-lived clay blobs far too seriously.”

“Being guardian for the Tree of Knowledge was a rewarding experience, since I had much time for contemplation, and I recommend it highly for you as well.  You are at best, a major ambiguity for these confused corporeal creatures, and at worst, an actual menace.  If you do not want to help them, then fine, that is your prerogative, since you seem to be so jealous of their freedom.  But you are certainly not here to do them any harm, nor to suggest that they work against their own potential.  You are right about our mandate, we are not under orders to influence them in any specific way, it is technically true.  Just let them play with their toys and keep them out of each others way, that’s all we need to do, really.”

“More fun to let them play with each other and see what happens.  Kind of like bumper cars or demolition derby, oh, they haven´t invented that yet, or is it again?  Anyway, watching them draw battle lines between each other with soft bodies and mostly mediocre brains -far more interesting.”

“You really are getting to be a nuisance, do you know that?  Is there not some place in the hierarchy I can petition to get you removed from Guardian duties and replaced by a harp who actually gives a damn about these creatures.”

“What, I do give a damn about them -I want to see most of them damned to a place they actually deserve.  Something resembling one of those hell realms in which many of them are starting to believe.”

“Took them long enough to re-discover that old thought-form.”

“If they insist on creating a world which is so much like what many of them and nearly all of us would qualify as being what a variety of hell would resemble if there were such a place, then who are we to interfere with their misbegotten schemes?”

“We are the ones who are supposed to direct them toward a higher path, remember?”

“Wait, have you been imbibing again, that stuff they pour out to us as libation offerings, because you are really starting to sound as if you have internalized that up and down stuff they all seem to make up for themselves, like Higher, and Path, etc.  I suppose it gives them something to look forward to in their short and mostly miserable existences.  Where have you been, Harp Player, floating on your cloud again plucking those lyre strings?  I really had a good laugh when I heard that the Ancient Warrior had promoted some guardians to form his new choir, as he calls it.  Then somehow some of the clay blobs heard of it, and started their own choirs to sing praises to King Evren and Crown Prince Janoj.  We actually heard about it all the way back West through the spy network blobs.  I was saying the other day…”

“I do not care what you were saying the other day you moron!  At least I was not one of the Harpies, dedicated to swooping down and destroying.”

“Moron?  Look who is talking, you conceited overly concerned self righteous clay blob-lover!  If I had my sword I would cut your strings and then cut your ethereal throat!  Then I could go back to cutting down these idiot nuisances we waste our time reporting on.  They all need to be cut down like grass, as the Creator has ordered on more than one occasion, and honored me with the pleasure of carrying out the order.  What a lovely sword that was, reaching from the stratosphere down to the surface of the earth, able to level whole city populations with one swing, flames shooting forth from all up and down the length of that weapon of beautiful destruction.  Ah, those were the days.  How I wait.”

“Well, how good for me then that your sword has been confiscated.  I might have to make you understand the power of my lyre.  You are on this duty because you clearly have much to learn, and I would gladly teach you were it not for the paramount importance I place upon my duty to these blobs, as you see them.  By the way, my charge is a member of the royal family, so if she is harmed in any way, you will have yet another charge of yours end badly through your negligence.  Shut up and pay attention to your charge, harpie!”

and you have a missing 4th draft, but a query letter (which caused me to re-plot the next draft using SnowFlake, Elizabeth George, and other websites, but in too much of a hurry, since I was also giving tours, writing my non-fiction book, and trying to build inter-faith community, all at the same time…)

QL:  CFoF Book 1 Lewis Query Letterbak

ShiraDestinie

Universal Date: (MEOW CC Date:): Tuesday, 26 September, 12014 H.E. (Holocene/Human Era)

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