I firmly, completely, utterly believe in Mark Twain's words of wisdom "Write what you know". I just never really applied it until I searched my heart while wondering what my first novel should be. I read mysteries, bodice rippers (yes, even those on occasion! Shh.. don't tell anyone!), fantasy of all sorts (urban, epic, you name it), even some (gasp!) Classics. So what next? I tried my hand at a pirate bodice ripper, but that project fizzled once I realized I had to actually describe a BOAT! (For those of you who don't know me, I have a deathly fear of deep water.) So where did my heart lie? I know, I know, I can hear you all practically screaming 'Fantasy, woman! Fantasy!' But there's a whole lot of fantasy out there... and yes, fantasy requires a level of research I didn't know about before I started. And let me tell ya, I didn't start out easy. I chose the legend of Camelot. Well... kind of. It chose me. It started out as a romantic fantasy.. a 'what if' taking place twenty years after the Fall of Camelot. Then I had someone proof it for me, which was an exercise in letting go. A novel is the paper child of your heart. To hear it needs WORK, that it's not perfect straight off the computer/notepad/typewriter... it hurts. Then to realize the romantic fantasy could be SO much stronger written as an epic fantasy? Ugg! So.. that's where I'm at. Revision. Again. Maybe I should say 'first revision', as I'm sure another one will be somewhere down the road.
So.. for your reading pleasure, here is the first 'bit' of my first novel to be completed, the second one to be revised (a story for another day)...
“Uther, go now! Hurry! Gorlois is busy outside the walls!”
The tall, bearded man hesitated and Merlin pushed him forward. “This is your chance! Take it!”
“She is devoted to her husband, Merlin. I will not take an unwilling woman!”
“This is what you wanted!” Merlin hissed. “This was your idea, Uther!” The king's mouth remained firm. “I will lay a glamour over you. Igraine will only see what she expects. Her husband returning from battle, and she'll welcome you with open arms.” He muttered under his breath. “There, now hurry!”
Uther stumbled forward, down the hallway to her rooms, and Merlin slumped against the wall. Magic, he mused, is not meant for such trivialities. Nevertheless, it was necessary to gain Uther's favor and the freedom to move about his court. Hearing no screams coming from Igraine's chamber, he smiled. Perfect. A small reminder, later, and Uther may well introduce me to King Ban. Once that happens, I can gain access to the lake easily enough. Flinging the black cloak he wore around his shoulders, he vanished.