Weekend Writing Warriors: Sunday 17 August 2014 (WIP: Ship’s Heart)

Between the tall windows of the refectory hung panels showing robed figures fishing from reed-boats. Yasmin spooned up pea-and-bean stew (“your third serving!” Jehen had said, “just how are you going to dance?”). The panel opposite their table showed an androgynous figure in many layers of sea-green and sky-blue and violet-white mist, as if she were clothed in sea and atmosphere. She stood in the reed-boat, one foot on either side of the plank seat, with the oars hanging loose in their locks; she smiled slightly, her palms upturned and thumb meeting forefinger; from each hand stretched a silver thread as thin as a weaving-spider’s guy-wire; at the other end, in the water, fish swarmed about it.

“‘She fishes neither with pole nor hook, and catches wisdom,’” quoted Genubi.

Yasmin frowned, focusing on the absurd image but not losing her attention to the delicious food. So that was the Goddess of the Ancient Sea. She had imagined the whirling dance of ocean, polar ice, and forest, not this rather absurd aristocrat standing in a boat in a way, what’s more, calculated to tip the vessel. 

***

POV Yasmin, age 17. From novel-in-progress, Ship’s Heart. 

Weekend Writing Warriors offers eight-sentence excerpts from a variety of writers; see the other excerpts here.

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Weekend Writing Warriors: Sunday 10 August 2014 (Published Works sampler)

Terence has a new inamorata. 

I’ve told him time after time that this never works out.  (In the Laboratory of the Night)

***

Erika knew when her mother had come in from patrol. From ancient habit, she woke at each of the hinges of the night, and then at moonset.  (Erika and the Vampire)

***

The sun glittered on the Mississippi River, washed the old Stone Arch railroad bridge in golden light, and lit the riverbank foliage to lamps. Radiance caught in the topmost treetops and Anton swept all of it up and claimed it in a single gesture. (Max and the Ghost)

***

Once upon a time on the Original World, there was an old man who traded one eye for wisdom.

The story is ancient; it came with us on the journey-ships, and traversed the Original Jump. (Tales from the Inhabited Worlds)

***

The opening two lines of each of my four published works to date. The next time I do one of these, I will have eight published works. Hopefully that will be some time before the end of the year!

Weekend Writing Warriors offers eight-sentence excerpts from a variety of writers; see the other excerpts here.

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Weekend Writing Warriors: Sunday 3 August 2014 (WIP: Leonie Hallward)

Mabel Dodge is a sort of eclectic Mme de Stael, who brings together a various society. One of the daughters of my host’s house, a vivacious beauty of surprisingly advanced views, promised me an evening there. 

“Papa,” she confided, “is something of a fogey and his taste in art is rather old-fashioned.”

At my raised eyebrow, she added hastily, “With all due respect to your late uncle, I’m sure.”

She took my arm as we went upstairs to the drawing-room, all roses and satin, her costume contrasting rather dramatically with her pirate’s wink. “It will be good fun,” she said, as if I were her own captured pirate queen, and she an apprentice corsair. 

“I hear that you’re a painter yourself,” she said, “So you must come to Mabel Dodge’s soiree.” 

Thus I received my invitation to the gatehouse of Bohemia.

***

POV Leonie Hallward, niece of the painter Basil Hallward from Oscar Wilde’s Portrait of Dorian Gray. From novel-in-progress, Leonie Hallward and the Secession of Greenwich Village. 

Weekend Writing Warriors offers eight-sentence excerpts from a variety of writers; see the other excerpts here.

 

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Goals: Release timeline (revised), Inside the Jump cover reveal!

Revision and editing on Tales from the Inhabited Worlds took a lot longer than anticipated, so the Inside the Jump and The Lost Pissarro have been moved to August. We’re currently negotiating release dates for the next projects in the queue, Annie Brown and the Superhero Blues, The Shape-shifter’s Tale, and The Broken-Backed House.

Cover design by Glass Knife Press Technical Services.

Cover design by Glass Knife Press Technical Services.

In the meantime, here is the cover design for Inside the Jump. It’s come a long way from the NaNo concept cover of last fall.

Just as the cover says, Inside the Jump is Book 2 of a trilogy. It’s designed to stand alone; I set myself the challenge of Book 2 first, and it will be released first. Book 1 (Ship’s Heart) is in progress, and Book 3 (The Fourth Prime) will be this November’s National Novel Writing Month project.

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Weekend Writing Warriors: Sunday 27 July 2014 (WIP: Leonie Hallward)

The fact of human faces — well, that’s another thing. I cherish that portrait of me that uncle Basil painted, because it is honest. It is a more honest mirror than my own silvered glass, for it observes what I could not see in myself: I do not see myself intent upon observation. How do I look when I am not looking at myself? Only another can tell me that, and Basil did me that honor. 

It is worth more to me than the most elegant society portrait. That would immure my true face behind the mask of the Lady. She’s a type, that Lady, as much as the medieval Queen of Heaven, and no less mythological than Aphrodite.

***

POV Leonie Hallward, niece of the painter Basil Hallward from Oscar Wilde’s Portrait of Dorian Gray. From novel-in-progress, Leonie Hallward and the Secession of Greenwich Village. 

Weekend Writing Warriors offers eight-sentence excerpts from a variety of writers; see the other excerpts here.

 

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Weekend Writing Warriors: Sunday 20 July 2014 (WIP: Leonie Hallward)

My mother and Basil argued over color, in a way that was immediately familiar when I was a student at the Academie Julian, drinking strong tea in the cafes with my friends. Those quarrels were the grown-up correspondent of my brothers’ wrestling bouts: undertaken with no real animus but a joy in competition. Amelie and Basil were colleagues, for all he did not paint in watercolor and she did not paint in oil. 

And he admitted to her alone that he found her medium daunting, like fresco that must be painted patch by patch, not too differently: pigments in water. 

Amelie (yes, I’m old enough, and my mother is dead) looked more like his sister than his sister-in-law: something in the cast of the face. They were relatives when they argued, in that friendly way that stepped outside the proprieties of the drawing-room and the tea-table. 

There was no condescension in it on his part, which I recognized even then, because I heard grown men talk to her much as they did me, as if she were some pretty child in lace and satin, a sort of animate doll. Of course it was some decades beyond my seventh year that I learned that was the general manner of men to women, but that’s another story.

***

POV Leonie Hallward, niece of the painter Basil Hallward from Oscar Wilde’s Portrait of Dorian Gray. From novel-in-progress, Leonie Hallward and the Secession of Greenwich Village. 

Weekend Writing Warriors offers eight-sentence excerpts from a variety of writers; see the other excerpts here.

***

In other news:

Cover design by Glass Knife Press Technical Services.

Cover design by Glass Knife Press Technical Services.

Tales from the Inhabited Worlds has been released!

Welcome to the complex landscape of the Inhabited Worlds. Survivors of a failed terraforming project have developed a brilliant culture organized around music, dance, and safety. An immortal dictator rules a fortress planet. Sentient starships dance in space. Aristocratic clans vie for control of the Mother of Worlds. Rumored space pirates lurk at the margins. Three different cultures stand on the brink of catastrophic change, in these nine tales of politics, family relationships, star-crossed love, space battle, and would-be empire.

This collection of multicultural science-fiction stories introduces the world and characters of E. P. Beaumont’s forthcoming Ship’s Heart Trilogy.

Published by Glass Knife Press. Now available on Amazon; other distributors to follow.

 

 

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Weekend Writing Warriors: Sunday 13 July 2014 (WIP: Leonie Hallward)

The summer after my uncle Basil’s disappearance, we stayed at his country pied-a-terre, in which my father was part-owner. Nothing had been changed; the place was still as it had been. The studio was closed off; one afternoon Ralph and I ventured in there, and it was eerie to see it, the palettes awaiting the master, the brushes freshly cleaned and arranged in the way that Basil would have them.

His workroom, awaiting his arrival, taught me how to lay out my work when my own time came. 

In the atelier in Paris, the master smiled very slightly when he saw how I set my palette. “Mademoiselle Hallward,” he said, and from the way he inflected the surname, he didn’t need to tell me that he remembered my uncle, for all that his work had long since fallen from fashion. I was beginning too late, in my twenties, but my body remembered what I first had learned with my eyes, those many years ago. 

What has been rehearsed with the eyes, long before the hands are permitted it, comes to hand with facility.

***

POV Leonie Hallward, niece of the painter Basil Hallward from Oscar Wilde’s Portrait of Dorian Gray. From novel-in-progress, Leonie Hallward and the Secession of Greenwich Village. 

Weekend Writing Warriors offers eight-sentence excerpts from a variety of writers; see the other excerpts here.

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