Tuesday, November 30, 2010

115

One hundred and fifteen. CXV. 115.

I remember when there were seven of us, shivering in an old strip mall, unwilling to take off our coats, learning that, when writing at least, murder was good.

I remember when there were five of us, the entries, the suspense, the morning I realized I wrote a book.

I remember when the forum consisted of 5 members - Mr.S., Mrs.S., me, and two dummy accounts controlled by Mr.S.

I remember when we hid behind plastic bushes when we realized there were new people on the forum, where before our seven voices had echoed in the vast auditorium.

1,172. One thousand one hundred and seventy-two.MCLXXII.

I could go on. But there's really something I want to address.

There were 115 entries to the third annual OYAN Contest, approximately 30 semi-finalists, 8 finalists, 3 top prizes, and 1 one winner.

Of course, all due congratulations to those who finalized (go Grace!) and placed. But this is for the others.

Because, placement or not, you're awesome.

The truth is, you'd be awesome even if you hadn't written a novel. As far as I know, you're all God's children--and even if you aren't, He's still chasing you.

But let's focus on the novel. Lots of you write for His glory. Lots of you write to change a world, to rescue a dying people. All of you choose to do something hard, something not very many people do, because you thought it was worth it.

It is worth it.

I've brought it up on this blog before, I think, but let me be blatantly honest: the 2009 contest devastated me. After all the hype, the best I could do was finalize. It's taken me solid months to recover. I'm glad it happened, though, even though I felt again the pangs of why couldn't I win? last night. Before, I'd said that I'd write for the glory of God alone. 2009 put that to the test. I realized that's not really why I wrote. It was part of the reason, sure, but it wasn't the only reason. I had other motives, or at the very least, other wishes.

Writing is a lonely occupation. Most of the time, you're left with you, story issues, and the uncaring and always completely unhelpful computer screen. This loneliness is why I think the writing forum has been so good for me, and countless others. It says you're not alone. We're in this together. We're going to change the world.

Writing is also hard to stamp as "good." When do you know that you've done it? When your writing is worth something? How do you know? Publication? Sells? Reviews in newspapers? Bestseller lists?

Student contests?

When I went into 2009, I was hoping for some kind of confirmation that I was doing the right thing. If I'd won, I'd probably gone: "yes! This means I'm a writer."

It's harder, though, when you don't get confirmation. You only keep going because you think that that's where God has lead you. You have to learn to say: "okay, no one may ever notice it, but it's worth it because You told me to do it."

It may sound insane, but it's taken me almost a year (in some ways, more) to come to the point where I say: "okay, God, this is in your hands. Show me what to do. Help me not need worldly confirmation."

Don't get me wrong, this lesson isn't fully learned. I think I'm being directed towards writing a screenplay at the moment. Last night, though, I could help wondering, thinking...God, could I write another novel? Please? Can I have another go at it?

Because I still want that confirmation. I'm a perfectionist. I want the top spot. I want to know that I really know what I'm doing, because hey, I placed first.

Maybe I don't really know what I'm doing. Maybe I'm still hoping for too much glory for myself. I don't know. But, last I heard, God said screenplay. I need to stick it out. Maybe it'll change the world. Maybe it'll change my heart. Maybe I'll just learn. But whatever the future is, it's good, because it's God's plan.

So, to the 107 who didn't place: you're awesome and amazing. You wrote, you struggled, you edited, you almost went insane. You're God's, and, whatever the world says, what you wrote is of immense value. Whether he has the life of a writer planned out for you or not, this last year wasn't wasted. You did terrific. You finished. You learned. You entered. He loves you.

And, though this may sound extremely superficial, I love you. When I was driving to orchestra last night, an hour and a half before the webinar, God filled me with love for all of you--even though I've never met most of you. He has a plan, and it's beautiful. Learn, love, discover.

Write.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

You want me to do what?

Last night, my family and I broke in a new sound system (which, I think, still isn't entirely working) by watching some of the wonderful show that is Doctor Who. The second episode we watched was Midnight. I could talk about the suspense and acting, but that's not really what often strikes me about my favorite Doctor Who episodes. They make me think.

I won't go into a whole lot of detail (for one thing, it'd ruin the episode!) but there were a couple of things I particularly liked. The first was how they drew out some of the main character's--the Doctor's--faults. As all Whovians know, the Doctor is an amazing person that we all love. He does, however, has his faults. The other thing was how it was a very potent commentary on fear and what it does to people--the irrationality, even the stupidity, that it can bring on.

So, I'm seeing already it's going to take me awhile to get to my point. Hang in there, please. I talked about this sporadically with my mom as we got ready for bed last night. Mixed in there was some discussion about good writers...and I brought up the fact that Davies, the writer of that particular episode, says he doesn't believe in God, yet his writing (all of Doctor Who) is often contradicting that view. Mom pointed out that that was probably because he's reaching for something. He wants there to be more meaning in the world than he allows for.

I don't remember how exactly it came up, but Mom also mentioned something about me writing something. Mixed in with good writers and all that. I said I might like it/be good at it, because I've been told over and over again that my dialogue is good, yet I know my prose doesn't really stand up that well. Well, perfect solution: take away the prose!

Then I had a flash. When I finished Forest of Lies, there was a bit of time where I messed with the idea of turning it into a screenplay. I had ideas for how to transfer the plot, how to tweak it to match the visual medium. I lost interest, didn't have enough time, moved on to editing, etc. Last night, I remembered that dream. The idea of seeing the story on a screen.

Like it or not, movies are big part of our lives, at least American lives, these days. There are frightening statistics about the number of adults that have read a novel since graduating from high school or college, yet the movies rake in heaps of cash. Even in the recession, people are still laying down the dollars for movies--3D movies, even.

I think there's currently a stirring in the arts, Christians--especially homeschoolers--interested in getting into the secular gripped worlds of novels, art, movies...entering that culture of death and changing it from the inside out.

I've always considered myself a plain ol' real BOOK writer. And maybe I am. But last night, after that flash in my head and as I thought over it both that night and this morning...I almost think I'm supposed to attempt to turn Forest of Lies into a screenplay. I feel rather like Gideon, though...I've prayed for clarity, but I only saw two options: edit Forest of Lies, write Etched in Black. I'm looking at them, God! Just point at one. Please. Seems like he said to me, "no, you're looking in the wrong place all together. I want you over there."

Are you sure? I don't know what I'm doing. I already did Forest of Lies--what is doing it again going to help? How will it even affect anyone? To get that out, I need more than an edited manuscript. I need a screen. A camera. Actors. Money. What in the world? I'm 17. It's not going to reach anyone else, and you already taught me what I needed to learn from it, didn't you? Why go over the story again? Is there something I missed? If I do that, I can't enter novel contests with it...it won't be a book! What about next year? Because surely this isn't for someone else...could you please make the ground sopping wet and the fleece dry? I'm not sure that was really you...

There, I think that's enough of a running commentary on Nai's head at the moment. Since last night, I've had several more nudges, in words of songs that I've taken as a battle cry..."sing until the whole world hears"...and I've come to a realization. Awhile back, I said, "okay, God, if the only person this book ever really affects is me, that's okay. I can deal with that." But that's a safe thought now. I am cool with that. Trying to do something that I have no idea where it's going to end, and how it will affect people? That's scarier. I could mess it up. I could get it wrong.

The truth is, it could be that this is still just a journey for me--me and my Daddy. Forest of Lies as a screenplay may open my eyes more to truth and love--because really, there's a lot more I could learn. But maybe it'll be something more, too. Someday. I've realized I didn't really want to give up writing Etched in Black, even though I said that I could if He made it all clear. The silly truth is that I still want another go at the OYAN novel contest. Plain and simple. I've finalized twice, and I really want to try again. But I think God's made it pretty evident that Etched isn't right for now. Maybe I'm hearing wrong and Forest of Lies isn't either. I'll take my chance, though. It's just like God to be unexpected and make sense at the same time, to push me out of the realm of the comfortable, to make my heart follow through with what my head said. (I really need to stop saying: "do this and I'll do that" because by goodness, He goes and does it and I have to follow through!)

So, that's a really long post. "Sing until the whole world hears what we're crying out"...to have something that isn't just brilliant and makes you think, like Doctor Who, but is absolutely grounded in truth. That has something. That says: "this could be yours."

~Nai

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Torn in Two

Yes, for the people who love Lord of the Rings, that is a Lord of the Rings reference.

I've been mulling over, or complaining about, what I'm supposed to be writing for a long time. My blog readers have become aware of my dilemma and the strong emotions that are attached to it. I stopped NaNoWriMo because I didn't think it was helping me make Etched in Black the way it should be, though the truth is it still hasn't changed that much since I stopped. Lately, I've been thinking about Forest of Lies more than ever. I miss my characters. I miss the story. I miss the passion.

Of course, you'll probably put a hand up and say: "woah there, Nai, you're doing a complete circle now. Remember that post about how it was all over, yada yada?"

I know. That's part of the reason of my confusion. I don't know where the truth ends and the laziness starts. I don't know where I belong, what I'm supposed to be doing. I don't know if I just haven't put enough into Etched in Black yet, or if it is simply the wrong story. But is Forest of Lies the right one? Or is it just the easier one? The one I understand?

As should be obvious by now, I can't tell. At all. I've been doing both, I've been swinging to one or the other only, I've been back to both, I've been questioning my reasoning and trying to evaluate whether it's just Eddie being lazy. I need help. I can't tell.

Please pray that God just makes it clear. I want to write what I need to: I just don't know what I need to. Do I go on the journey of worth and justice, or do I return to truth and love?

~Nairam

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Love

I think my blog readers are aware of my Hamlet nuttiness. So, when a book called Ophelia was suggested several times in a row to me, I thought: "well, who knows! I just might like it."

After all, I'm also a Robin Hood nut, and Robin Hood lives on retelling. The truth was, though, that I ended up having to put it down. It wasn't the retelling--it sounded like a really cool idea (Ophelia survives? Sweetness...) and I wanted to see how that worked out. There was something I didn't like, though.

For a long time, the only romance I've really liked was that of people already married. I know, I'm a weird teen. I just think that married couples, especially those in their 50s and beyond, are adorable. Maybe it's just me. But that shows me that they've loved each other enough to stick together for years, decades. It's amazing to me.

I think my first grasping of what love actually is came to me from Lord of the Rings. I remember one night thinking: "I know what love is! It's absolute sacrifice." Frodo loves the Shire; he practically dies for it. Sam loves Frodo; he gives him everything. I easily translated this over to Christ; He died for us. Everyone one of us. Even those of us who reject Him.

I didn't realize it when I started, but Forest of Lies was a journey for me. It was a journey into the deepness of what love is; I had it in my head, Forest of Lies came and taught me from my heart. It came at me from many different angles; there was the love of friends, the love of a man and a woman, and the love of the Creator and His creation. All of them revolved on what God ultimately showed us with the cross. One character died for his friend. Another one endured extreme emotional and physical pain for someone determined to hate him: because he thought it was what God had called him to do. One girl realized what Truth was, realized that she didn't have to earn love from one person; He loved her already, unconditionally. Actually, there were two girls involved. A character, and her author. Robin, Much, and Forest of Lies showed us both.

God is Love. He is also Truth. It wasn't the forest of lies that man claimed; it was full of its faults, both in the humans in it and the story that was told, but there was truth, love, and beauty in there.

No wonder I keep wanting to return to it. God, show me where to go. Is York my next place of Truth? Or should I stay in Sherwood? Or somewhere else entirely? Show me what I need to learn...

I put down Ophelia because I didn't believe it. I don't believe love at first sight. Love takes work, love takes sacrifice. I didn't see any of that. I saw the young emotions. It's not the same thing. I want real. No imitations. This is probably why there are precious few romances I'll tolerate; the world of stories, and therefore love stories, is currently controlled by the world. But after Forest of Lies, do you think I'm going to fall for that?

~Nairam

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Joan of Leeds

Harsh rapping on the door cut Gervais’s sentence about meeting Yvette in half. Joan jumped up, her gaze leaping around the room. She pulled Gervais’s to his feet and shoved him in the direction of the fireplace, flinging her damp cloak into his arms.
“Lay down!” she hissed. “And don’t speak!”
Gervais did as he was told.
The knocking continued. Joan rung out her hair and threw a shawl over it, clutching the ends at her chest. She lumbered towards the door.
“Coming, coming!” she croaked, throwing open the door.
Apparently, it smashed into someone’s face. Cursing came from behind it, and then it wrenched away, towering over Joan.
“Filth, are you hiding or abetting horse thieves?”
“Eh?” Joan asked.
The man shouted it again, grabbing one of her shoulders. He pulled it away. “You’re wet,” he said, his voice sly.
“Me stupid boy decided to run off in this ‘ere rainstorm, ‘e did,” Joan said, gesturing towards him.
The man squinted his way, and Gervais closed his eyes.
“Get up, boy!” Joan shouted at him. “He can’t see ya there.”
Gervais stood, conscious all of a sudden of his height. The man stared at him, face unreadable in the dim light.
“Closer, idiot,” Joan said, and Gervais crept closer like he was afraid of her. As soon as he was close enough, she whirled around and gave him another stinging slap across the face, and he fell groveling.
“Now,” she said, turning back to the man.
Gervais let out a pitiful moan. She turned back around and kicked him in the side.
Gritting his teeth, he moaned louder. She lifted her foot high and back, almost into the man’s stomach, and ploughed it into his stomach.
Gervais decided, show or no show, to stop groaning.
Again, she turned back to the man. “What did you say about house-thieves? Who’d steal houses? How’d they steal ‘em?”
The man growled and slammed the door in her face.
Gervais heard his feet slapping against the mud, growing further and further away.
Joan lit the candle again, looking down where he still lay on the floor. “Hurt much, boy?” she said in the same crazy-lady accent.
Laughing and wincing, Gervais stood. “Not much.”
Joan flashed him a smile. “All right then. Let’s go find your friends, eh?”

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Things They Say

“Now,” Edwin said. “Who are you?”
“I told you already,” Yvette said.
“You lied already, you mean,” Edwin said. “You said you were a poor forester’s girl, yet you fight like a wildcat.”
“So does your sister,” Yvette said. “Or at very least, a wild-kitten.”

~Chapter 5

The end of the road?

"I don't know about this story [Forest of Lies]. It feels different than all the others - it feels...this will probably sounds silly, but it feels like one I MUST tell. One that will become truly mine."

I was pleading with my teacher. Please, my email said, please, understand. There's something different. I don't know what to do. Help me.

It was a different question then I'd ever asked him before, and I had peppered him with plenty, about technical things, about emotional things, about getting stuck, getting bored, and those darn adverbs. This was different. I had a story I didn't know what to do with, one that would simply not leave me alone.

"I think it's different this year. It's a story, not random scenes. At times it IS hard to write and plan - I've never had so many extreme ups and downs on a story before. I think it's different, special. I'm a little scared of the fact that it might not be, but I do want to try it. I actually chose not to write it this year, because I wanted to write it "when I was better, because I like it so much." You know, older. Better at writing than I am. But it seems I can't wait on this one."

This was my main concern. I had chosen not to do it because I didn't feel ready for it. And, after my tiring experience with Betsy Flowain the year before, I had decided that it would probably be better to begin a story from scratch than to use one I had been messing with for two years. My mentor's response to these fears made me sob.

"I understand why you would want to write Robin Hood later, when you are better as a writer, but you will actually become better as a writer by putting all of yourself into everything you write. So, if Robin Hood is where your passion lies, then go for it. It may not be the story that it could be in a few years, but it might be even better...

I wrote a novel for my Masters thesis that was completely against the grain...I still love the novel I wrote then, though when I look at it now I see how full of problems and mistakes it is. I also see how I should have written it, and sometimes I think about going back and rewriting it. But - and here is the point - I can't go back and write it now because I don't have the same passion for the story that I had then. I was better off writing the story with less skill because I had more passion. If I had waited a few years until I grew as a writer, I wouldn't have written the story at all, and I may not have grown as a writer. The story helped me."

As I compile and re-read this now, I'm crying again...ever since last year, I've been trying to edit Forest of Lies...I still love it with everything in me...but my repeated attempts and failure to change it make me wonder, now. Anytime I look back on things Mr.Schwabauer has told me, I realize how much the same is true for me. As I've been editing, I've been afraid of messing up Marian's voice. In fact, my fourth draft of Chapter 1 is polished, but her voice is changed. I thought it might be good, but now I wonder...

I love Forest of Lies; I wanted it to be perfect. Maybe, though, it is. I still get PMs from people telling me how they loved the story, how it touched them. I've been thinking: with all those faults? How does that work? I didn't express myself or my story as well as I COULD have!

But I wrote with everything in me. And it changed me. I don't know where I'd be now without Forest of Lies. It was such a wonderful, beautiful experience, I've been trying to get back in on, to polish it to a high sheen. Maybe, though, it's not meant to be polished. Maybe sometimes raw and bleeding is more important than perfection.

As I started to write this this morning, I was going to qualify my sentiments with "maybe I'm just lazy...maybe I just need to get into it..." but I remember when I dived into second and third drafts with extreme passion in April of 2009. I stayed up until two in the morning. It was still alive then, my heart still beating in it. It was a flower I coaxed to maturity.

Now I'm trying crystallize that flower, make it shine with my new skill.

I haven't wanted to let it go. I still don't. Maybe, though, it's time now that I did. If I revise it with the plans I have, it won't be the same. It can't. I'll give thoughts to word choices, to details, to rounding the story around Marian and Robin, when Marian and Robin are the real focus. When Marian's change is all that mattered, all that ever will matter.

Thank you, God, for a story so beautiful, an experience so wonderful, that I'm crying at the thought of letting it rest a year and a half later. I know you have new stories to tell me, and each is "more beautiful than the last."

Whatever I decide, I love you, Forest of Lies. I love you with all my heart. I won't forget.

I can't.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Gervais

So, this is a character that was supposed to be very minor, maybe a couple of scenes, who I came to adore. For awhile, he was the only thing keeping me liking Etched in Black. Anyway, he turns out to be Yvette's mentor, never mind that he's only 14. He's the most emotionally and spiritually stable of the bunch (granted, the first part is probably helped by the fact that he's a guy). He was very close to Robin and the whole Hood family, who took him in as an orphan when he was 7. This is his intro scene, which I actually wrote last spring.

Gervais took a running start and bounded over the small stone wall. His foot clipped it on his way over, but he made it, and even landed on his feet.
Well, it seems those few inches did do me some good...
He straightened, looking around. Not a sign of life. The manor itself looked crumpled, tossed and kicked by the world.
Gervais strode forward, shoving aside the fear that came from looking at that silent house. The sun set behind him, but no candles shone in any of the windows.
Where are they?
He averted his path and moved towards the stables, picking up his pace and in the end, running. He slowed down when he got near the building; it seemed crouched and submissive as well. One door stood straight, blocking his way. The other hung to the side, threatening to tumble to the ground. Gervais slipped inside.
It smelled of rotting hay and horse waste inside; the smell of actual horses was either gone or covered up. The darkness fell in behind Gervais as he walked by the empty stalls. One of them moved back and forth, as if twiddled with by a ghost, the hinges squeaking with every movement. Gervais reached out a hand and steadied it.
A draft a wind got in through the hanging open door and swept down the empty hall, shuffling the hay that lay scattered across the ground. Then the door banged shut, leaving the darkness to do what it would.
A horse whinny startled Gervais out of his stillness, frightened the darkness that attempted to press close.
He felt his way forward, wrinkling his nose at the smell.
“Hello?”
Another whinny: sounds of muffled hooves. Gervais stopped still. He couldn’t see a thing. At last, a horse nose butted him under the chin, making him take steps backward to avoid falling over.
He reached up a hand, letting the horse investigate his fingers, and then rubbed its forehead.
“How did you stay alive here, may I ask?” he said. The horse only let out a rumbling nicker.
“Dark in here, isn’t it?”
Gervais felt along the horse’s cheekbone, and to his surprise found a bridle with dangling reins. He scooped them up, and led the way out of the stable, pushing aside the door that had closed. Barely was he out when the top half crashed to the ground.
“I thought as much,” he said, turning to the horse. He did a double-take.
“A saddle?”
The fancy saddle had slid halfway around the horse’s midsection, and the stirrups dangled in a dangerous-looking way. Gervais moved beside the horse and uncinched the saddle, pulling it off. Having nowhere to put it, he dumped it on the ground and ran his hand over the horse’s back, scratching it.
“Who on earth are you?” he muttered. He looked at the saddle on the ground, looking rather like a dog on its back with his feet in the air.
“If I am caught like this, I’ll be hanged for horse stealing,” he said. “Hmm. Not like your master, eh?”
The horse, of course, said nothing.
Gervais leapt up, taking the reins, and turned the horse towards the manor. She didn’t act like a wild animal who would toss off her rider and race for the stables of Locksley.
That was another thing. Why Locksley? Gervais had never seen her before.
Gervais let her amble over to the servant’s door, slid back off, and tied her reins to a ring in the manor’s side. He walked up to the door and knocked. The horse watched him.
“Pretty dumb, I know,” Gervais said. He pushed open the door and stepped inside.
He stopped dead.
“Lord have mercy...” he whispered, fighting the urge to cross himself.
Ash lay scattered across the wood boards in the room Gervais had used to take his meals. The table lay flat on its back, looking much like the saddle Gervais had left in the lawn, but now with a grimmer meaning. The legs had been hacked at, showing old wounds of an ax--or sword.
He moved over to the basin that had always held water that seemed just a tad too cold in the early mornings. Nothing. Dark stains, like fingers, slid to meet a dark puddle in the center.
Gervais backed up. He could feel the emptiness of the house. No one was here. At all. And it didn’t seem like there had been anyone for a long time. It almost felt as if the manor had been empty of life for five years, never mind the five months he’d been gone.
He forced himself to go forward, to peak into the hall. Some animal scuttled away from the door as it creaked open. His footsteps seemed to threaten to bring the roof down about his ears. He resisted the urge to call out.
Nobody is here.
But where are they? What happened?
His hand rested on a door. Are they dead?
A more chilling thought followed that one. Are they dead here?
Gervais couldn’t open the door. He felt like a child, but fear and the darkness finally took him, co-captors in a plot he didn’t understand.
“I have many enemies, Gervais. Lately, they have been growing more bold, more malicious. More determined. If I were you, Gervais, I would leave.”
“But where would I go? I have nobody but you...”
The conversation hung in the threatening darkness around him. And yet I went. Months later, yes, but I went. I left.
And now this...
“Do you know what your God has promised you, Gervais? ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you...’”
He squared his shoulders and pushed open the door, threatening the empty house to do its worst.
It did.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Dreams

Well, in responding to a comment on my last post, I unburied again the desire I have for two more novels in the Forest of Lies strain/series/whatever. When I wrote Forest I expected it to stand on its own. But, apparently, the characters aren't really through with me, because I got a bunch of ideas for sequels (and a prequel) upon finishing the first one.

So, for kicks, here's a brief description of what I'd imagine my other two main ideas (Etched in Black being the big one right now, of course) to tackle whenever my heart's ready for them. I know that they'll change a lot if and when I do get to writing them, because my books always do. Number one is, like I said, I have to have a heart for the story that I think I'll be telling. Then, as I work on it, it turns deeper into my heart and pulls out what I'm struggling with or thinking about. Then it comes out on paper. There's a quote by somebody that says "I write to discover what I think." This is very true for me. God, help me think and learn from each story I write, and let me write it for You!

Stained
Main character: Much
Time: 1189

I used to have a signature on the OYAN forum where I tried to explain the theme of each of my planned books in one word. Stained's? "Redemption." This book would go back to the bitter past of a character that is deeply loved and hardly seen by all of my readers of Forest of Lies. It would also delve a little deeper into Robin's past, and the relationship between the two young men.

Being the second son in his family, he isn't much valued by his father, who puts all of his hopes for the continuation of the family business into Much's stronger and seemingly more capable brother. Much eventually runs away and joins up with an outlaw band, where he participates in robberies that always end in the slaughter of the prisoners. Much, who was originally appalled by the outlaw leader's bloodthirstiness, slowly hardens to it. Then the band stumbles across a childhood friend of his: Robin of Locksley. A rift has opened between the two, and though Much, when hearing of his leader's plans to kill him, helps him to escape, they part on no friendly terms.

A few months past. Robin returns, completely changed, to the point that he baffles and angers Much. But what he is saying is making sense. Much finds himself caught between Robin's hope and his leader's despair; but mostly in the fear that there is no way to forgiveness.

(Obviously, the latter half of this book needs some work (as in, there isn't much I have planned for it right now, and it sounds too similar to some of my other books)...though maybe it would work best as a novella. Most of my interest in this book stems from a desire to know Much better then I do..)

Unbroken
Main character: Robin
Time: 1199

This is a book that still scares me, for a couple of reasons. 1) I'd have to write Robin. He's so complex (and a guy. >.>) that I don't feel like I'm ready for it. 2) He's also 26, married, and has kids. Obviously, I have never been 26, a husband, or a father. That said, this one really pulls at me at times, and I hope someday I have the courage and strength to write it, if God wants me to.

Though this one has the least actual story development in my mind, I know the range of emotions. Robin is struggling with depression: his body is failing him, his friend is gone, he can't support his family. In the end, I think he just leaves. He goes to his mentor, Anselm, who tells him to snap out of it. He might meet up with his father, who he thought long dead (similar to my short Locksley, but that piece would not be in the book). While he's gone (it might be several weeks or months) his family is attacked.

Overall, feelings and emotional wounds that he just pushed to the side, refused to face fully, eventually overwhelm him and drag him into the dirt. This story is about faith in God with all things, and about how even with all our imperfections, we are still precious to our Creator.

--

I think I'll stop trying to explain that now. Not very adventure-novelly, are they? Well, we'll see if they get written. If not, I bet I'll be writing something even better--tailor-made for my spiritual growth.

Soli Deo Gloria.

~Nairam

P.S. We had to reset my blogger account because of some stuff google's been doing with gmail and things, which is why it now says I've only been on blogger since October and I no longer have an About Me page. There may be other anomalies as well. I'll try to get it all fixed back up soon!
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