Thursday, November 4

Green Glass Door: Chapter 1

So I'm really putting myself out there by posting snippets of my story.  I took two creative writing classes in college and loved them, but they were definitely an experiment in expanding my comfort zone.  I've always liked to write but have been rather reluctant to share my literature with others thinking it's either weird or just plain horrible.

For a history degree at UT you have all sorts of options for a variety of classes.  So you're required to take all these gen-ed classes which include your entry level maths, sciences, english, foreign language, etc.  Beyond that, you have to take an additional writing intensive course.  Many of the options suck, but as I was making my schedule (which I used to love to do), I noticed there was English 364: Writing Fiction.  Sounds great.  I took a creative writing class in high school and thoroughly enjoyed it, but our teacher was typically the only one to read our work.  So I signed up and got into the class with mostly creative writing majors and got to work. 

Our teacher assigned various things.  We had to write a story from the first person, we had to write a story with a foreign voice, etc, etc, etc.  Then, we'd come back into the class and turn them in for her to read.  We'd split up into groups and do some sort of group critique, typically of the assigned reading in the book.  Occasionally we'd share our work.

I really liked the class, I thought Pamela helped me grow throughout the process, and I learned to appreciate writing more and more, even though I typically didn't write my stories until the wee hours of the morning the day before class.

So after you fulfill your gen-ed requirements, you have to take x number of upper level distributions in categories a, b, and c having one from at least each category, blah blah blah.  So I read through the classes available and noticed that there was an English 464: Advanced Fiction Writing.  The pre-req for this class was that you'd taken 364.  Win!  So I enrolled fall semester my senior year.  My class schedule that semester rocked, and my class went from 3:40-4:55.  We had the best time in that class.  Our teacher was approximately 30, had published a book, was fun and laid back, and didn't assign much work.  Our class consisted of mostly creative writing majors, again, and many of them were extreme weirdos. 

The routine of the class went something like this: we would write two 10ish page short stories throughout the semesters.  We would work two students' stories per class.  By work, you were to bring the story the class before it was to be critiqued, distribute it, everyone would go home and read it.  Then in class the next meeting, we'd spend 30 minutes picking it apart.  Then repeat the second story after "midterms."  Then as a final assignment, since we didn't have tests, you would write a third short story to turn into Margaret.

That class made me absolutely love creative writing.  I didn't produce any work I was particularly proud of, but I felt like I could escape when I wrote, and again when I read what my colleagues wrote.  

So for a while now, I've wanted to write historical fiction.  I love history, and I love to write fiction, why not combine the two?  I'm having a hard time coming up with a topic I think I could genuinely write about.  

So I decided to start with what I thought would be easier.  Chick Lit.  I thought: I'm a girl, I love chick lit, I could totally write chick lit.  And I was about two pages into my 175 page story for NaNoWriMo when I came up with another idea that I thought I could actually turn into something.  Write now I think it's going to be a  fantasy-esque type thing which resembles Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, but definitely differs.  I've got four chapters and 2550 words so far.  I'll leave y'all with chapter 1, which is definitely shorter than it's contemporaries.  Enjoy!

The door stood ajar.  If Brielle hadn’t been standing in close proximity, any and all manner of riffraff could’ve gained access to the other side.  She slowly rose from her guard post, glided toward the mossy colored Green Glass Door, and closed it quietly.  As she stepped back, she breathed a heavy sigh of relief. 


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