Discussion of {Working Title} Anastasia: A Bit about a Novel I’m Writing

 I was going to post an excerpt from the novel I am working on, but, as it has mature content and I cannot find the “mark as mature” button, it will keep. I will, however, discuss the novel, how it germinated, why it freaked me out, and why I feel the need to finish it even though I hate seeing all this pain my character is in. 

I feel a need to warn you, especially those who know me, this is graphic and gory and rather twisted. I have never written anything like this before and hope to never write such a tale again. I was very surprised when the story first came to me. I had never met a character who had no chance, was beaten down at every turn, and lived in such darkness though luxury was all around her. Nothing that happens to the girl has ever happened to me, not in the least. I hope none of those reading this will have any of the things Anastasia is going through happen to them. Fie upon such thoughts! 

One night about a year ago, I had a dream. My dreams aren’t those fuzzy recollections of daily events. They are vivid, real and, sometimes, very painful. Anastasia was one of those vivid dreams. I ran around trying to get away from this family I knew I did not belong to. I had ran from my old high school to the safety of a rice farming village and there two fiends carried me off after I ran out of places to run. I could not run on water. I was suddenly in a city in a house made of glass: walls, floors, ceilings. I was trapped. When I did escape, I was caught quickly and punished swifter. I remember feeling hopeless and confined especially when a black haired man turned his devil-may-care smile on me as I lay in my blood slipping into a drugged darkness, a darkness which seeped from the point of a syringe. I was glad it was just a dream. 

The dream would not leave me after I awoke. I started writing a tale with a narrator who would not name the girl anything besides “the girl” unless she was running free across the rooftops. The narrator was careful not to let anything slip and to keep it’s thoughts separate and only give what was happening or how the girl was feeling. The narrator never got inside the other character’s heads. I became fond of this narrator and strove to keep him. 

As I was writing this tale, the dream wandered into the back of my mind. It went to dwell in the part of my brain which never sleeps and is always analyzing everything. While the dream found its way to its new home, I was freaking out because I was writing the torturing punishments in such graphic detail with ease! Where was all this darkness and gore coming from? Why was it coming out so easy? Shouldn’t such atrocity be hard to describe? My friend, C.M. Lanning, helped ease my fears. He told me that the easy description could have come from movies or television shows I watched or, books I’d read. I was much relieved. I wrote in less fear of something dark, deep, and full of hate which takes pleasure in tormenting others, somehow living inside my bright, innoncent soul. As I have said before, writing {Working Title} Anastasia makes me very sad and depressed. It is slow go. All the slower because I want to get as much right and worked out during the first draft as possible. If a boat is made with the fewest mistakes possible, it won’t spring too many leaks when put to water.

I do not like writing such darkness, but this darkness has permeated our world and cannot be ignored. Nay, it should not be ignored. Just because we ignore a shadow does not mean that it goes away forever. Such pain and tragedy exist today, in these modern times of crude civility where we talk through technology more than to a person. But pain and tragedy does not mean that all hope is lost. Pain and tragedy shape us .Yes, it’s not fun. It should never be fun, but it happens. Not everything is darkness and pain. There can still be hope, light, joy and, peace. The girl must figure this out.

The narrator is ambiguous in large part, because I believe my readers have a brain and they can see the little clues scattered along the narrative and piece them together. Discussing the novel without giving away the mystery is hard. I cannot tell you which is the girl’s real name, but I can make a cast of characters:

The girl: Lives in luxury but thoroughly unhappy, is abused, does not get enough to eat. Her life is dictated to her. She likes to watch birds. Abhors/loathes Trey, Hates Charles, is frightened of Meredith. She can run with the wind, called a Daughter of Hermes.

The nurse: A recent acquirement of Meredith and Charles. Now, they don’t have to take the girl to the doctor every time she rebels.

The maids: New maids are hired every three months; every maid in the city is starting to become wary of working for the owners of the glass house.

The Doctor: A psychologist who appears to be a bumbling buffoon, who Meredith is quite pleased with. But is he? I mean, he went to medical school!

Ryan Milligan: Young and good-looking, intern for The Doctor. He sees everything but the narrator chooses not to notice Ryan’s noticing.

Meredith: Anastasia’s mom. Shouts at the girl alot. Likes to take a red leather riding crop to the girl when she misbehaves. Pretty, PERFECTIONIST. Anastasia is not perfect, this really gets under Meredith’s skin.

Charles: More to him than meets the eye. Handsome, easy-going. Can talk his way out of and around anything, likes to be in control, Intimidates the girl. Displays untoward fondness toward the girl. Dislikes his son.

Trey: Son of Charles and Meredith, brother of Anastasia. Always has a sparkle in his eye when he looks at the girl. Has a secret. Molests the girl and constantly complains. Can run fast with special shoes.

Sarge: The girl’s cat. They become very close when she is released and given him after leaving the hospital. He loathes everyone but the girl. He especially hates Charles and growls as long as Charles is in sight.

 

As you probably saw, this has a bit to do with mythology. The girl is born with a natural ability to run fast as the wind. She can also jump unbelievably high. This is an ability Charles prizes. He co-invented the JUMPRUN shoes to mimic such extreme running and leaping. He made alot of money on JUMPRUN shoes. Those born with the natural ability to run impossibly fast and jump to the heavens are called Children of Hermes, Greek god of the wind. It is extremely rare for this to occur, so the shoes were made in order to harness or mimic the ability. Shoes play a small part in this tale. It is mainly about how the girl copes and changes in such a harsh environment. It is not a happy tale. Every time I sought to make it happy and let the girl be free, Charles ruined it. Blame him for your tears. 

Once I figure out how to mark a post as Mature, I will post an excerpt. Feel free to ask questions.

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