Jane Rusbridge, author of the beautifully crafted, The Devil’s Music, who’s looking forward to the publication of her second novel, Rook, this August, (pre-ordered, of course) has kindly included me in her Lucky Seven list. You can find Jane on Twitter @JaneRusbridge and see her over at her gorgeous website http://www.janerusbridge.co.uk.
Lucky Seven is a bit of blogging fun where we extract seven lines from page seven or 77 of our Work In Progress and pray that at least one section will standalone as a piece of text. Then we challenge seven other writers to do the same.
The instructions for Lucky 7 are:
- Go to page 7 or 77 in your current manuscript
- Go to line 7
- Post on your blog the next 7 lines, or sentences, as they are – no cheating!
- Tag 7 other authors to do the same
My extract is taken from Glass Houses, my first completed manuscript which, after too many re-writes to count, is now in Submissionville again. Sprinkles of fairy dust are always much appreciated.
Line 7, page 77 of Glass HousesGlass Houses is a novel about unlikely heroine, Tori Williams, whose life implodes after sending a text from the M62 motorway. Emerging a notorious public figure, Tori fights her way to a bold and improved existence. It’s just a shame her devoted husband isn’t on board...
After weeks spent recovering from the injuries sustained in the crash, there are rumours that Tori is soon to leave hospital and interest in her has piqued again. The press attention is frenzied and security has been stepped up. Carly is Tori’s loyal daughter and she’s upset by what she’s just overheard staff on the ward saying about her mother’s plight; even they think she should be wheeled straight out of hospital and into the arms of the prison service.
The third security guard, tub-shaped and with the faintest whiff of blonde hair on his head, the remainder on his chin, stood pressed against the closed door to Tori’s room.
He smiled. “Hello you!” Carly felt his eyes settle on her sunken shoulders and her tatty bag which trailed on the floor, hanging on the tips of her fingers by the long strap. “Hot topic,” he said, inclining his ear towards the rest of the ward. “It’ll pass, always does.”
Carly knew what people were saying, of course she did. She read the papers like everybody else. She leapfrogged photographers in her parents’ garden and turned on the radio to find phone-in debates handing out prison sentences like interest-free credit cards.
I was delighted to be given a second Lucky Seven tag by the talented Jan Marshall who I met on Twitter @Jan_Marshall and not only writes but produces cover art for fellow writers. You can learn more about her writing and see some of her designs here: www.designrelated.com
This time I looked at my second Work In Progress, Misguidance. I will hold my hands up here and admit that I had to cheat as the sections on both page seven and seventy-seven were nothing more than a bunch of notes. The exercise was a reminder that Misguidance is very much a first draft and when I say I’m three-quarters of the way through my second manuscript, I am mindful that ‘manuscript’ is somewhat over-stating it and that ‘scribbles’ might be more accurate.
So, I hope you’ll forgive the slight deviation from the rules to allow me to jump to line seventeen as the first significant place (with seven in the title, of course) from page seventy-seven of Misguidance where I could find seven concurrent sentences.
Line 17, page 77 of MisguidanceMisguidance is about Evelyn Leonard and her disastrous life. Evelyn has made some big mistakes but was dealt a bad hand and when stranger, Sarah Bentley puts together the full picture, she is able to sympathise. Eventually Sarah creates the perfect opportunity for Evelyn to start to put the record straight.
Sarah and Cari, friend-cum-fellow-amateur-sleuth, are engaged in an awkward conversation with Bill, who has been working at Evelyn’s house following her largely unnoticed death, and who is extremely perturbed to have spotted Sarah ‘trespassing’ in the late Evelyn Leonard’s house.
“I mean it you know,” Sarah said pushing the biscuit tin under Bill’s nose and giving it a shake, “a building career. My parents would have a fit but I’d love a physical job; whistling at men as they walked by, an all year tan...”
“…muscle-bound, perfectly toned body,” Cari interjected, casting her eyes over Bill’s beer induced paunch. She dunked her biscuit into her tea, retrieved it moments before it dissolved.
Bill took another chocolate chip cookie, smiled in place of a thank you and explained that Cari might get a tan building villas in Spain but in this country, was more likely to get piss-wet-through. “Anyway,” he said, leaning back on his chair, hands clasped behind his head and giving his intertwined knuckles a good crack, “I’m not a builder, I’m a joiner and you girls can prattle on all you like about my line of work but I won’t leave this house until I know what you took from Mrs Leonard’s place.”
He leaned back across the table, planted his elbows firmly on top, slurped his tea.
Thanks again to Jane and Jan for thinking of me.
The Next Seven:
The seven writers I have chosen are:
The seven writers I have chosen are:
- Gillian Smellie @GillianSmellie http://skybluepinkish.wordpress.com
- Gerry McCullough @Gerry1098 http://www.gerrymccullough.com
- Kelly Byrne @KL_Byrne http://kellybyrne.wordpress.com
- Catherine MacLeod (AKA Diana!) @silentnovelist http@//daisychainsofsilence.wordpress.com
- Kay B @1_Lovelife http://Ilovelife.blogspot.com
- Jane Alexander @exmoorjane http://exmoor.blogspot.com
- Martha Williams @Martha_Williams http://marthawilliams.org
Can’t wait to read your extracts ...