Even with the editing and reworking of the story line that I’m doing, writing the story as I go is challenging for me. I don’t know if you have heard of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo.) If not and you are a fiction writer, you should check it out. They have events throughout the year, but their annual event occurs in November. I won in November 2015 by writing at least 50,000 words during the month. It lead to me having a rough draft of my second middle grade novel, The Bully’s Way, done and ready for first round edits.
While participating in NaNoWriMo, they have two categories that writers tend to fall into and it is based on how they create their works. Some writers are known as pansters (ones that write by the seat of their pants) and others as planners (ones that outline and plan what they are going to write). I tend to be more of a planner, but do some of my initial work as a panster. A true panster may have better luck at writing this story the way that I am. Thanks for hanging in there with me guys. It has been challenging, but a good exercise for me to battle through.
I need to remember that I am writing for me first. I want people to enjoy what I write, but that can’t always be my motivation to type the words and create the stories. Even though the writing journey may be challenging, it also needs to bring out my passion to write for me and my readers.
Chapter 3 – Sally
When Sally got back to the house, she ran up to her room. She could hardly wait to write about her adventures with Lila today. From seeing the turtle to finding a nest of baby warblers. The mama bird had the nest hidden underneath the low hanging branches of one of the jack pines in the woods. Sally decided to look up some information about warblers and found out they are endangered birds. She decided she would keep an eye on and take extra care of them.
She took out her yellow notebook and started to write. She took what actually happened and added some of the story she created with Lila’s fairy character.
Lila wanted to go and see the unicorn so bad today, but it was a little far for us to go with the chance of rain popping up all afternoon. I told her we would try to get there sometime this week. Then we started talking about the turtle.
We went to the pond last week and learned that we had a new neighbor move in. There was a snapping turtle swimming in the pond. We named her Gloria. When we walked by her today, she was in the process of burying the eggs she just laid. We waited on the path far enough away from her to not startle her. She stopped for a moment to make sure we were just watching and continued to build the protection around her eggs. We are so excited to see the babies after the eggs hatch.
Sally closed her notebook and placed it on her bed. She thought about Lila and was feeling sad about having to leave her when she went off to school. Coming to school with her wouldn’t be what Lila would want, but Sally didn’t want to leave her here alone either. She didn’t want her to feel the loneliness that she felt for such a long time.
She loved to share her stories with Abigail. Maybe Abigail could take care of Lila while she was at school. Sally thought maybe she could bring Abigail to the pond and show her around? Sally had always seen it as her secret place though, and didn’t know if she wanted anyone else to know about it. But something told her that she could trust Abigail.
The next morning, after getting dressed and grabbing her backpack, she went downstairs to the family library where she and Abigail met for her lessons. The room was located at the end of the hallway and was two stories tall. It was one of the tallest rooms in the house with the walls lined with shelves and filled with books from floor to ceiling. It was decorated in rich dark browns and reds. When Sally walked in, Abigail was reading a book at the long wood table in the middle of the room.
“Hi Abigail. What are you reading?”
“Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickins.”
“Do you like it?”
“It’s pretty good. It was one of the books here in the library. I’ve been picking one out of the collection each week to read.”
She stood up from the table and closed the book.
“Should we get started?” She asked.
“Sure,” Sally replied.
“I thought we’d would start with math and get your least favorite one out of the way. Did you fill in those tables I gave to you yesterday?”
“Sure did. Stayed up pretty late to get them done.”
“Let’s see how you did.”
Sally nodded her head as she pulled the paper out of her folder and handed it to Abigail. She took out her red pen and began to touch each of the squares with it as she checked the numbers. Sally held her breath until Abigail was done.
“Looks like someone is finally getting the hang of this. Nice job Sally. Now I’d like to give you some problems to solve using the information in these tables.”
“O.k.,” Sally replied.
They both sat down next to each other at the table and Sally started working on the problems that Abigail had given her to do. After about an hour, Abigail sat back in her chair.
“You have really started to retain this information. That will be enough math for now. How about you read one of your stories to me?”
“O.k,” Sally replied and pulled her yellow notebook out of her bag, “I’ll read you the one I wrote yesterday by the pond.”
“What pond?” Abigail asked.
Sally stopped. It was her secret pond. She wasn’t sure she was ready to tell anyone about it yet. She did think about telling Abigail yesterday though. Then she sighed. She had to tell her now.
“There’s a pond back by the stone wall in the woods. It is a secret place that Lila and I have been going to on our adventures,” she replied, sounding a little defeated.
“I kind of wondered where you wandered off to after our sessions. Is it someplace that you can take me to? I would love to see where you and Lila explore.”
“I guess I can do that,” she replied starting to perk up.
“How about after our lessons today?”
“Sure,” Sally replied, kind of excited to share her secret place with Abigail.
“So, are you going to share your story with me?”
“Yes,” she said.
Sally opened up her notebook and started to read her story about Gloria. She hoped that Abigail would see her when they went to the pond today.