Work In Progress Wednesday

By concentrating on writing to the exclusion of everything else, I’m managing to write 3,000 – 4,000 words a day at the moment. Having just finished an epic Fantasy, I thought I’d see-saw back into short m/m romance territory, so I now have 15,000 words of an intended 30,000 word novella, set at an unspecified date in semi-mythical Romania.

There was a large lack of consensus as regards The Crimson Haiduc as a title (one person saying it sounded like a waterfowl reciting Japanese poetry.) So it remains a temporary title only.

Here’s a quick quote from today, in which – fortunately – what I actually wrote turned out to be a great deal more exciting than the plot plan:


The point caught Mihai under the shoulderblade, lifted him off his feet. The speed drove a foot and a half of ash shaft into the wound before Eugen could no longer hold up the weight. He let go. Mihai fell so hard he broke the lance under him, and he did not get up.

But Vali had seen something worse. The thing twisting in agony behind the windows of the hall was the missing child, Iulia, altogether ablaze. He hammered the lock of the shutters with his sword hilt until it shattered and she tumbled out, screaming, one great candle of a child.

He let the sheepskin fall from his arms, wrapped it firm around her, picked her up and – praying the shock wouldn’t kill her – dropped her straight down the well. Pausing only to grab the rope neatly coiled beside the bucket, he jumped after. And oh God. Oh, God it was cold, but the little splashes and the whimpers said she was alive and swimming. Fumbling, because his hands were numb already and this dark was the profoundest yet, he managed to get a loop of the rope around her chest beneath her arms. She clung to him, breathing like one who is afraid to cry out loud – so fast they learned these skills. He didn’t have to say “Ssh. Don’t say a word or the bad men will get us.” She knew it already, better than he.


0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Charlene Newcomb
11 years ago

I meant to comment on The Crimson Haiduc as a title & got lost in real life…

Maybe it’s because I’m from the U.S. but my first thought was ‘how do you pronounce that word?’ Thank you for providing the definition! I remember reading somewhere that readers may get turned off a story if they don’t know how to say the names of characters or places. (Or maybe that’s just us American readers who are more ignorant of foreign languages!)

Fantastic excerpt! Thanks for sharing.

Elin Gregory
11 years ago

I too intended to comment on ‘haiduc’ but wavered between here and your LJ and in the end did neither. As a title it has a ring to it but there’s a definite “bwuh?” element to it. The Crimson Bandit, while not exactly accurate in the historical context, gives an ignorant reader a lot more to go on.

That’s a fabulous and horrific excerpt. Poor mite.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x