Monday, December 03, 2007

Novel excerpt.

Okay, I am laying it all out on the line for you guys here. I honestly did not want to even look at my novel again for a long while, never mind share it with anyone. But I promised an excerpt, so her it is. Very rough draft full of run on sentences. Thanks for reading:)

Kate awoke curled up against Michael's body, her head resting on his arm and his other arm wrapped around her waist. She smiled as she thought of those large, calloused hands and the way they rasped gently against her soft skin. The way he stroked her entire body with them until she was shivering with pleasure, how they fell asleep still entwined in each other's arms. Then she heard the sound that had awakened her in the first place. Coughing, more like barking, coming from the nursery.
She slipped into her robe and quickly made her way across the hall. She could hear the wheezy, rasping breaths coming from her little girl, she picked her up and Sarah started to whimper. Her breathing becoming even more laboured as she awoke and started to cry. Kate reminded herself not to panic as she quickly carried Sarah into the bathroom and shut the door. She turned the hot water on full blast and pulled on the shower. As the room filled with steam she sat on the toilet seat rocking Sarah and singing quietly to her, stroking her sweaty brow. Kate reminded herself that she had done this before, sat in this spot rocking her other children, helping then to calm down and calm their breathing as the steam opened up their tiny airways. They had all been fine, this was no different. Croup caused their already tiny throats to become inflamed and swollen, partially blocking their airways. When they awoke in the night coughing and struggling, they became afraid and then they would cry causing even more respiratory distress.
Sarah seemed calmed by her mother's caresses, but her breathing was still very laboured. Kate lifted Sarah Grace's jammie top and looked at her chest. She could see Sarah Grace's delicate skin sucking in between her ribs and at the base of her throat with every breath. Her little girl was still in quite a bit of distress, so Kate turned off the shower, grabbed a blanket and took Sarah out on the front porch. She snuggled them into the swing and wrapped the blanket tightly around them as she held Sarah and let the night air work it's magic. On many different occasions she had taken the boys to emergency when they were in this kind of distress and more than once, the act of taking them outside to breathe that cool air, had done the trick before they ever got to the hospital.
Occasionally they had needed more care, often a inhaled steroid to bring down the vocal cord inflammation, one time Jonah had actually been admitted to the children's ward with a particularly bad bout of croup. They just couldn't get his oxygen levels high enough to release him. Katherine was really hoping that tonight would not be one of those instances. She hoped that the cool air would help her daughter to breathe easier and they would both be able to get some sleep.
They rocked there for a long while, Katherine almost nodding off a few times. She silently prayed as they swung, prayed for Sarah Grace and for all who slept in her home. She thanked God for all her blessings, feeling guilty for how she had been feeling lately. How ungrateful she had been. Asked God to help her feel content, to take away the restlessness that had been plaguing her for months. She peered into the starry heavens, looking for what, she did not know. Then she looked down.
She watched her baby girly with a smile as she calmed and her eyes grew droopy with sleep. “Thank you God”, she breathed. Kate rocked with her fuzzy, pink bundle for a few moments longer, enjoying the warmth and softness of her youngest daughter. Then she carried Sarah Grace back in the house and up the stairs to their room. She tucked her in with Daddy while she got the vaporizer from the closet and filled it up in the en suite sink. After she plugged it in and added some Vick's Vaporub to the reservoir, she crawled into her snug nest with her baby and her husband, wrapped her arms around them both and closed her eyes.
Sleep was evading Katherine as she went over and over the events of the last weeks in her head. It was a bad habit of hers to think too much at bedtime. Often, when she was young, all the embarrassing moments of her life would come to her at night. In her almost asleep state she was vulnerable to the negative inner voices that told her she didn't fit it, she didn't belong, she wasn't good enough. She had learned to keep them at bay by journaling. If she had anything on her mind she could write it down and then she didn't have to think about it any more.
More recently though, the journaling had ceased to be an effective deterrent. She was growing more and more ....... restless, for lack of a better word. She couldn't really put a finger on what was going on, but it scared her. She wanted more than anything to be a loving and caring wife and the mother that her children needed. She wanted to be the woman God intended her to be, but she knew that she was falling far short. And she was tired of feeling like a failure in her own eyes.
As she lay beside those two incredible gifts God had placed in her life, she struggled to find an answer, a solution to her discontent. A why for these feelings. She knew she should lay it all out before God, but she was afraid to bare it all, to actually take out all those feelings and look at them in the light. She was afraid of what lay hidden in her own soul.

6 comments:

  1. I'd love to read more. I felt like you might be writing about me....

    Wonderful Kris!

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  2. Kristen...it's *excellent*.

    I know, I know... noone is going to tell you that it's bad, and if it had been bad, I would have still said it was good, and all that...BUT I want you to know that it is REALLY good. Not just 'good'.

    It is gripping, it is touching...I can sense her struggling. It's interesting...I want to know more. And that's what a writer hopes for, right? To capture your audience. You captured me.

    Heidi

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  3. I'd love to read more too! I gotta say though I thought you were heading in a COMPLETELY different direction, and I was like "Kristen!!" But my mind just works like that! Lol!

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  4. This is really good, Kristen! :-) After a month, you should get it out again and edit it with your eyes fresh, then send it to agents.

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  5. This is really, really good. I mean it. I think you have a real shot at publishing this.

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  6. This is seriously AWESOME!! Oh my gosh I want to read more!!! You MUST get this published!! You rock!

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