Writing: Attempts


The first story I wrote for fun was about a regular girl named Olivia, a fiery redhead (I was ten!) who lived in a fairytale world. I never finished it (incidentally, this would become a staple of all my future work, too), but the plot was going to be: Olivia’s boyfriend goes off to be a fancy knight, and she (being very modern and anti-violence) decides to set off to find him and drag the idiot back.

I was reading through, and it’s pretty god awful. Still, probably because I’ve always been a little fascinated with myself, I can’t help but be a bit amused by some of it.

Here, I skillfully avoid having to deal with difficult dialogue by saying “Olivia argued her point of view, which resulted in the worst fight they ever had. So afterwards…” Awesome. That’s actually a technique I may start using in my writing today. I think I could make it work.

Olivia learns how soon her love will be leaving her, probably forever, probably to go die, as she notes herself, and she totally has her priorities straight about it: “That was in just two days! However, that wasn’t the worst of it. If he left during the day, not only would he miss the festival itself, but her birthday was also the day just after it!” Apparently, Olivia is the most self-absorbed, kick-ass character ever.

Also, my annoyingly persistant fondness for vampires and emo!kids was apparently pretty well established even when I was ten. At one point in the story, a vampire is captured. He has “long hair to his shoulders”, “soft cheeks” and a face full of “tenderness and sweetness” and, of course, fear. My ten year old self totally got the appeal of the whole girl-rescues-somewhat-vulnerable-but-potentially-evil-guy thing (which is what Olivia proceeds to attempt – I’ll never know what happens because that’s where the writing stops. Darn, it was just getting to the trashy romance novel level smut, too). It’s actually no wonder at all I became such a slut for Buffy. It was preordained.

All in all, terrible stories, but I love how my writings/themes haven’t really changed, after all. Except for the talking animals. I don’t do that anymore.

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When I was a kid, I used to write stories. When I was ten or eleven, I began one called Bailly School Horrors; an honest to god written-by-a-kid story with talking animals that centered around a dog going to training school, or something. I never got far enough into it to actually have my main character attend the title school.

The dog introduces herself: “My name is Ally. I’m a nice cocker spaniel with white, curly hair. Unfortunately, to keep it white, I have to take a bath every Sunday and Wednesday. Oh well. No one ever said life would be fair. I like how jaded my character is. She’s that drunk in the bar who tries to talk to anyone who’ll listen.

Then there’s was this bit of dialogue between Ally her friend Tammy, who is a cat:

               ‘Oh, Tammy, it’s you.’

               ‘I thought you were supposed to keep clean.’

               ‘I slipped.’

               ‘Typical.’

               ‘What do you know? You’re just a cat.’

               ‘You’re just a dog.’ And at that point we both started laughing.”

And I started laughing too, because it was the most painfully horrible dialogue I’ve encountered, ever. I guess it’s just one of God’s little mercies that animals don’t talk, after all *rim shot*.

 Cont. in First Attempts, part two: Olivia