Today’s Discover Challenge is Snapshots, and I’ll let the idea speak for itself…
In a guest post on Jenna Schwartz’s blog, writer Andrea Jarrell told a powerful personal story about coming into her voice. …
Rather than summarizing how she felt at a particular age or telling us about her year generally, she narrows the focus of each section to one experience. One feeling. One moment. …
There’s emotion, pain, tension. … The sections don’t necessarily flow from one to the next, but the cumulative effect is a rich sense of what she was feeling in those moments and how she grew and changed as a person. …
Take us on a journey, one small scene at a time.
The story by Jarrell at the link above is really wonderful, so I recommend you check it out. The idea itself is so interesting too, not only for Neeka in the new cyberpunk story (or cyberstory, as I’ve taken to calling it), but also for my characters in Finding Dragons. Even if I never use any of the vignettes in the main story, this is a great way to build up background information that will make the characters that much more real to me.
The time has gotten away from me today and I only have two of the four planned moments written, so I’ll post them now, I hope you enjoy. However, I already have tomorrow’s Wednesday Writing Craft post written and ready to go, believe it or not, which means
I’ll have that much more time to finish the others and update this Discover Challenge post, so maybe check back later in the week, if you only get to read two moments right now? (never did get back to these, but maybe in the rewrite!)
Stay creative everyone, goodnight!
Neeka babbled happily to herself as she played with her rag dolls, while nearby her mother hung the laundry up to dry on the lines strewn between the garden boxes on the crowded roof of their apartment building.
Two other women arrived on the roof with baskets of their own, and Neeka smiled brightly and waved at them, calling “Lola!” It would be a year before she’d really get “hola” down right.
Her mother shushed her, but Neeka thought she’d try one more time, this time with her other greeting word. “Seelad!” she called. She wouldn’t get “suilad,” hello in Elvish, right for another year either.
This time, one of the women did look over, and the little girl brightened. But the woman’s face was twisted in an ugly sneer. “Stupid mutt,” she muttered under her breath, but Neeka’s half-Elvish ears still caught it. She didn’t know the words, but the tone was clear. Her smile vanished.
“Why didn’t she leave that thing with its herbie father,” the other woman asked, snickering, loud enough that this time Neeka’s mother heard.
But instead of saying anything, the little girl’s mother just finished the laundry, lifted Neeka to her hip, and went back inside.
* * * * * * * *
The HR stiff glanced at the tablet in his left hand, reviewing the displayed stats, grades, and infraction records from Neeka Delgado’s last year at N-14 public school for the third time, while simultaneously typing away with his right hand at the virtual keyboard on his desk for the monitor on the wall showing an indecipherable scroll of words, numbers, and colors.
Neeka had been careful to get good, but not great, grades the last few years, and had kept mostly out of trouble, though she made sure to do some of the “typical teenage stuff” to color, but not mar, her permanent record.
Her mother’s nagging had never worked, a constant repeat on the themes that if she would “just live up to her full potential,” the Corp would surely “snap her up” when she graduated, to “set her on an Executive track.” That would ensure a good salary, the “right friends,” and prestige… but Neeka also knew it would mean scrutiny and expectations.
She had known from an early age that she wasn’t wired for that.
“And which department were you applying for, again?” the stiff asked, once his attention was drawn back to her. Neeka answered with no hesitation.
“UAV Security,” she said, smiling.
* * * * * * * *
(Soon, there will be at least two more moments here, promise!) Darn, I never did get back to finishing these snippets. Maybe someday I will, but they’ll be in another post. Ah well, two pieces isn’t bad! 🙂
Continue this tale in the next short vignette, Tuesday Discover Challenge: Memory…
or jump right into the main story with the first exciting chapter, called Tuesday Discover Challenge: Perspective…
This post is copyright © Jamie Lyn Weigt. All rights reserved. Please do not share without credit and a direct link back to this post and my site, writingdragonsblog.com.
Dragon Tattoo by alyzill on DeviantArt.
I imagine Neeka could have a tattoo like this! 🙂
7 thoughts on “Tuesday Discover Challenge: Snapshots…”
I like how you’ve replicated Andrea Jarrell’s post. I agree, writing vignettes like these is great for fleshing out a character’s backstory. Great job 🙂
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I enjoyed reading about one of Neeka’s childhood experiences. Those mean women! It made me sad for little Neeka. And the teenage(?) Neeka is very clever, already knowing her path and taking the steps needed to get there. It’s obvious she’s very smart, and cunning too. I can’t wait to see how her entire story plays out.
Thanks for sharing these 2 moments in her history. You know that Tuesdays are my favorite day for reading your blog!
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Thank you so much, Melissa! Ugh, I know, I felt so bad writing that scene — I mean, who says things like that to a three-year-old? Hopefully later today, I’ll be adding two new moments — if it goes the way I’ve planned, it’ll be another from her childhood (8-ish?) and then from her job at the corp closer to last week’s snippet. 🙂
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Sounds good. I’ll be looking out for it!
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