Well, it’s been more than a week since my last update, and here was I thinking I might start to get a bit more ‘regular’ with Drifting Astray – but never mind. This will be my third entry within the month of March, and that’s got to be a good sign!

The last two weeks have been exciting indeed (many, MANY lovely occurrences, such as meeting up with Squeaky, her hubby and Talulah, as well as finding a shiny new apartment to move into with teh Wereboy) and I haven’t had a world of time in which to write, but Aisling Weaver’s Weekend Writer challenge helped, once again.

This week I have another short story to offer, although I’m not convinced that it isn’t the start of something longer. AND I had tremendous fun/trouble fitting the images in … some of the links are quite tenuous. Some of them are laughable.

Either way, you should be warned that it is about naked alien boys and the nice girls who go looking for them. 😉

Here’s the prompt …

… and here’s what I wrote!

Earthbound

I looked down into the clear waters of the fountain and saw, in the reflected sky between the lilypads, something falling towards the earth.

I turned around to look, and saw that the falling thing was a boy who was descending gently, feet pointing towards the ground. It was as if an invisible parachute suspended him, slowly dropping him through the sky.

I felt a prickle of fear and excitement as I watched, but at the same time I was rooted to the spot. If I moved even an inch, everything in front of might begin to make sense again.

The boy in the sky was falling towards the earth. It couldn’t be real … but it was.

He’s not falling, I thought. He’s just following the most natural path through curved space. (more…)

Last week I observed the beginning of a new challenge posted by Aisling Weaver on her blog, Rebirth in Buffalo. Every week, Aisling will roll nine story cubes and post a picture of the outcome on her blog.

This is what she said:

Every week I will roll the dice. They will be posted Friday at midnight(EST). I invite all writers, no matter your genre or your style, to try your hand at this challenge. Short, long, prose, poetry, I welcome all!

Your challenge…to write a piece that encompasses the nine elements shown on the dice. Once completed, add your link below and crow your success on twitter under the hashtag #WeekendWriter! If you don’t have a blog to post to, please post it in the comments!”

It is completely ingenious, and I couldn’t wait to try it.

Here are the dice from Aisling’s blog for this week’s challenge:

… and below you can read what I came up with. I couldn’t believe how quickly the images started to trigger new ideas. I also loved reading entries from last week’s #WeekendWriter, all of them completely unique. It just goes to show the real significance of the writer’s mantra: “write what you know”.

There are many themes in life, in writing, in art, and everyone will interpret them in their own completely unique way. 🙂

The Mystery of N

“Open your eyes,” Dawn said. “You have to look at this differently.”

How? I thought.

The map was abstract. It was drawn on a square piece of parchment, depicting a rugged, rocky island with a mountain right in the middle. It was just like a treasure map from a pirate legend.

An arrow drawn above the mountain showed north, but from there, all similarity to a normal, navigational map disappeared. The shape of the island was scrawled over with symbols, hieroglyphs and letters that had no meaning for me.

“I know you have the answer all figured out,” I growled, “so why don’t you just tell me?” (more…)

… and thoughts on its future.

A few days ago, I started doing something I hadn’t done for years, not since I was a carefree 17-year-old writing Tolkien-derivative short stories …

I started making a Fantasy Map™ and boy, did I enjoy it.

There is some background to this. About a week ago I started thinking about my WIP again. The WIP has been in my head for over a year now and it’s already changed forms several times. Soon after getting back from Portugal last year I got the initial idea that set it all off. Then, as charted in this blog, I started writing it in September. Months went by, I got somewhere around the 60-90,000 word mark when I realised that the story was changing again.

It was almost like the story had its own ideas about how it wanted to be told. I blogged about it again and thought (hah!) that I was actually getting towards the end of my first draft.

How very wrong I was.

I wrote more, and more, and more. I got frustrated, was ready (again) to chuck it all away. So I left it, and let it rest. It rested, in the end, for months. Back in May I chucked down some ideas in note form about about how I could rewrite the story, because it was becoming apparent that in its current form, I would never be able to write anything resembling a coherent ending for it.

Now, those ideas have spent long enough brewing in my head that I’m ready to exorcise them and commit them to paper. I have a plan, people. A plan. Complete with – and this is the best part – an ending.

And now, the WIP has its very own Fantasy Map™. So it should all be easy from here, right?!

Well, no. Yesterday, while poring over the map in its rough form, I got a completely different idea for another story set in the same world, which is shaping up to look suspiciously like a prequel. Which ISN’T HELPFUL AT ALL. But it’s kind of cool though.

So, let the fun begin. The WIP will be reborn and in the meantime, let’s see where this other-story-that-could-be-a-prequel takes me …

Map Teaser

Oh my, is this a blurry, out-of-focus teaser image? I think so!