"Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, 'What! You too? I thought I was the only one.'" ~ C. S. Lewis

Monday, January 3, 2011

Show Me Yours Blogfest!

I'm so glad I saw this blogfest before it was too late. And I know I'm getting this post up a bit late - I meant to set it yesterday, but ... well, honestly I just forgot. But it's here now! You can go to Sarah's or Hannah's or Summer's blogs to see the links to all the other fantabulous entries!

My NaNo novel doesn't really have a title, but it's a YA fantasy mixing faerie tales and mythological creatures. The basic premise: Layla and her best friend, Moira, are backpacking when they're caught in a storm and seek refuge in a castle where they find themselves caught up in an enchantment with Prince Tavares (who happens to be a vampire) and his horde of zombie-like servants. Strange things start happening and Layla discovers that she can see magic - different colors for different types of magic.

I would also like to add that this is the rough draft - I didn't have time to do any revision with the lateness of my joining the party (um... pretend that sentence was grammatically correct) And it's rather rough, but there you have it.

this scene starts with an invasion of gnomes. Layla's personal servant, Daria, takes her down to the kitchens to try to protect her.


            A strange chattering noise started coming closer and Layla spun around in time to see three small creatures come running down the steps after them. The gnomes were about a foot tall and their faces were deep brown and craggy like hardened clods of mud that had happened to form face-looking shapes. Their eyes were deep set, but were surprisingly an almost glowing blue. Their clothes were also dark brown, and fit tightly to their bodies.
            They were so small, but there was a terrifying aura of menace around them and Layla shuddered and backed away, moving closer to the servants. The leading gnome snickered and his deep rasping voice seemed to send shockwaves through the room. They advanced and as she shrank away from them, Layla felt a shudder deep inside and she straightened up.
            “Why am I scared of you little pipsqueaks?” she asked and grabbed a large metal skillet off a table nearby. “You leave us alone or I’ll bash your little potato heads in.”
            None of them had any reaction to her threat other than a mild interest.
            Layla felt Daria pulling on her arm again, but she shook her head. “I’m tired of running and fainting and everything. You gnomes weren’t invited and you can just go home.” She lunged forward, swinging the pan and then several things happened at once.
            There was a burst of bright blue light. Layla’s head started to pound, but the pan connected with the side of the gnome’s head and green sparks scattered and then dissolved. Tavares fell down the stairs into the kitchen with about ten gnomes clinging to him. Daria grabbed a long spoon and stabbed one of the other gnomes in the eye. The cook grabbed a pot full of some boiling liquid and dumped it over the third gnome.
            Tavares jumped to his feet and began peeling the gnomes off and flinging them around the room. The cook kept hitting her gnome over the head with her pan. Over and over and over again she brought the heavy metal down on him until he stopped moving. The gnome that Daria had speared screamed a terrible deep animal scream and clapped his hand over his wounded eye, scrambling to get away as she lashed the spoon at his head again. But Layla was seeing all of these things as if she were watching a movie. They all registered, but she wasn’t really paying attention to any of them. Instead she was looking in horror at the main gnome, the one she had knocked to the ground. The one that now had angry green burns from wherever the sparks had landed.


Margo Benson said...

I love this...and this is EXACTLY what gnomes look like! What a fun piece of writing.
Thanks for stopping by mine too.

Teebore said...

Teehee, gnomes. Though I probably shouldn't be laughing.

Good stuff. I love stories where the mundane meets the fantastic, especially when you throw in mythological creatures!

J.C. Martin said...


Lisa Potts said...

Good descriptions. I had no trouble picturing the gnomes perfectly. Nice excerpt. Thanks for sharing.

Sarah Ahiers (Falen) said...

you had me at an invasion of gnomes.
Also when you say things start to get strange AFTER they've already met the vampire.
Fun entry! Thanks for playing along!

Lisa-Marie Jordan said...

Wow, very exciting! I loved all the action going on, and the description of the battle with the gnomes made me wish I had a weapon!

Melissa said...

GNOMES! YES! You are fantastic!

I love this whole idea and I loved this excerpt!

L'Aussie said...

I'm glad you entered your excerpt. This is intriguing to someone who knows nothing much about gnomes! Great descriptions! Happy New Writing Year!

Summer Ross said...

This was a good read, very clear images.

nindogs said...

Wowzers! I didn't expect to enjoy that so much. I don't know when I last read about gnomes, much less these kind of gnomes. (:

Rebecca T. said...

Thanks everyone for your kind comments! I've had such a blast reading all of your excerpts.

@Margo: I love my little gnomes so much! Glad you did too :)

@Teebore: *shakes head* laughing at my gnomes? Guess who I'm siccing them on next...

@Lisa: Thanks! The description here feels a little long to me, but I'm glad you got a good picture of what they look like!

@Sarah: Thanks so much for hosting! And I love the gnome invasion so I'm glad you do too :)

@Lisa-Marie: They can be vicious creatures at times :) Always good to have a weapon nearby!

@Melissa: Thanks! Glad you enjoyed it!

@L'Aussie: I don't know anything about gnomes either. Just the ones my head invented :) Glad you enjoyed it and Happy New Writing Year to you too!

@Summer: Thanks! I'm glad it came across to you well :)

@nindogs: I'm so glad you liked it! The gnomes were an accident, but I may expand their importance a little since it's such a different twist!

Elizabeth Twist said...

Zombies and vampires and gnomes, oh my! I got excited when I read your plot summary, but then the gnomes were just...nasty and delightful. I hope you finish this. Happy writing in 2011!

Summer Frey said...

Fun!! I love the premise. :D

Gnomes, gnomes. You really showed those little suckers, huh?

Jessica Lei said...

Very interesting! Your writing could be tightened up a bit by limiting 'was/were' when describing and choosing stronger verbs instead of 'verbed verbing' type things. I loved how Layla's strong female personality came through here. Good job! Thank you for sharing :D

Rebecca T. said...

@Elizabeth: *claps hands* yay! I'm glad you liked the premise. I'm having so much fun and I do hope to rewrite this soon.

@Summer: oh the gnomes. My favorite twist! Glad to see you like the premise as well :)

@Jessica: Thanks for the advice. I re-read it after posting and groaned at how rough it is. I know I've got a lot of work to do, but I'm glad you enjoyed it!

Jodi Henry said...

Gnomes, who knew. I never see these little creatures in stories. Great idea.

Loved it.


Ellie said...

Yay for gnomes! I'm hooked already. A great excerpt.

Dan said...

Thank you. That was so much fun. Loved the description of the gnomes' faces. Also, that concept of her seeing magic flows of color like some supernatural exhaust is really cool.

Justin W. Parente said...

Another excerpt I didn't expect to see come out of NaNo. Woot Gnomes! This read okay. Maybe watch out for some of your longer sentences. You can break a few of these apart and make them hit harder when they're shorter. Punchy words=fantastic writing.

Thanks for sharing.

In My Write Mind

Hannah Kincade said...

oh wow! I needed that! I loved this scene. I could imagine the little brown menaces everywhere. I can't wait to see the end result!! Thank you for participating and becoming one of us!! ;P

Anonymous said...

Exciting stuff! I'm a little unclear exactly what was going on here and why the MC felt so determined to pick a fight with the gnomes, but as a good fight scene it pretty much stands on its own merits. Thank you for sharing, and joining in the blogfest. Good luck finding a title!