The End of a Month of Commitments

30Nov09

We did it, both of us. John made it through the itchiness of No Shave November, and I managed to write a novel in 30 days. My novel wrapped up at 52,829 words at 8:45 p.m. Granted, the writing still needs a lot of work for consistency, some more depth to some of the parts that I flew through, and research the parts that need research to make them more accurate.

Here’s your final beardwatch picture for No Shave November 2009:

Doing National Novel Writing Month has been incredibly educational for me. I’ve always been told by other successful writers that to be a good writer you need to write everyday, but I’ve never been able to pull that off. This novel forced me to take time to write everyday for the first two weeks of November and showed me that it was possible, and all my excuses for not doing it are lame. I don’t know if I’ve ever grown so much as a writer! This was the kind of growth spurt that leaves you in pain. Now comes the easy part: revising, finding an agent and then a publisher! That is the easy part, right? Click the link below to read an excerpt from this rough draft of my novel Conversations Between Bob and Maggie. This is the part where Maggie attends her first Sunday School class ever.

“Dear Almighty God,” started Mrs. Robinson. “We come to you this morning on Your designated day of rest to praise your holy name.” Maggie heard a snicker and glanced behind her as slowly as possible. Bob was there, and he was giggling. She elbowed him. She didn’t think Mrs. Robinson would have approved of his response.

“She’s talking to me, Maggie,” was Bob’s response. “I can giggle at her if I want to. I am after all, Almighty God.” That last statement was said in a very mocking tone.

“We thank you, Lord, for sparing Muffin from the valley of the shadow of death. We praise your name for rewarding Billy’s efforts with a B.”

“That was a fluke on the teacher’s part. I had nothing to do with it,” Bob whispered. “If that kid doesn’t start actually trying instead of relying on these prayers and his mom’s snickerdoodles he’s never going to play football.”

“Shhh!” Maggie finally said, trying not to laugh herself. Mrs. Robinson and the other children glanced her way. She played the submissive, obedient child and bowed her head and folded her arms in her lap.

“Lord, we implore you, reveal to Anna’s father whatever sin is in his heart that brought about his recent job situation. Reveal that sin to him so that he may repent so that you may in good conscience bring him new career opportunities.”

Maggie was shocked at the evil Sunday School teacher’s insensitivity. She tried to get a look at Anna’s response, but the poor girl refused to make eye contact with anyone. Maggie looked to Bob to make sure they were on the same page, and he wasn’t so much livid as he was sad. She made a face at him, imploring him to tell her what he was thinking.

“It’s tragic isn’t it?” Bob asked.

“What?” Maggie whispered.

“Huh?” Molly whispered.

“Oh,” Maggie was surprised into reality. “Nothing. I didn’t say anything.” Molly shrugged.

“I won’t lie, Maggie, I’m furious that this woman would distort me like that to this beautiful girl, but Jane Robinson really believes this to be the Truth, and that makes me sad.”

“Mrs. Robinson,” Maggie raised her hand. “Where is the ladies’ room?”

“It’s down the hall two doors on your left, honey.”

“Thank you.” Maggie got up to leave the room and beckoned to Bob to follow her. Once they were in the bathroom, Maggie checked the stalls for patrons. When she was sure no one would be eavesdropping, she spoke up.

“So this isn’t some delusion from when I was four? You are actually God?”

“Who else did you think I was?”

“I don’t know, a guardian angel, maybe? Maybe you really were my grandpa?”

“Your grandpa’s still alive.”

“I don’t know, what I thought, but you’ve never said.”

“I thought you just always knew.”

“I guess I did. I just have never had it said out loud before.”

“Well, kind of out loud, Maggie. I mean you’re the only one who could hear me.”

“You know what I mean,” she snapped at him.

“Woah, Maggie, I think Mrs. Robinson would say I would strike you with boils for that kind of anger and disrespect.”

“That hag doesn’t know what she’s talking about!”

“I don’t disagree with you there, but do you know what you’re talking about?”

“Why do you always have to be teaching lessons when I least want them?”

“Because I’m God,” he shrugged and smiled.

“Is your name really Bob?”

“No, not really, but you couldn’t say God. You thought it was Bob, and I thought it was cute, so now I’ve adopted the name for myself.”

“You are ignoring the big point here! Aren’t you going to stop that evil woman from hurting that girl anymore than she already has?”

“Not in the way you’re wanting me too.”

“What other way is there?”

“That’s not for you to know about, Maggie.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“It means, I’m doing something different with her life than yours. She’s supposed to experience this Sunday School class just the way its happening so I’m not going to interfere with it in the way you expect and want me to.”

“Fine.” She stormed out of the bathroom.

“Don’t give me that attitude young lady!” He hollered after her, half-serious, half-joking. “I’m the Almighty God! Don’t you walk away from me!” He followed her down the hall.

“You never take me seriously.” She kept walking but threw that comment over her shoulder.

“That’s not true.” He jumped in front of her. “You are here for a reason.”

“Why? What do you want me to do?”

“You’ll have to figure that out.”

“What?! I have to figure it out? Why do you have to be so cryptic all of the sudden?”

“I’m Almighty God. I get to be however I want. I will tell you this much. It’s not Anna.”

“Fine.” She rolled her eyes and went back into the classroom.

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7 Responses to “The End of a Month of Commitments”

  1. Love the excerpt!!! I can’t wait to read the whole thing. I’m so proud of you, Char!

  2. 3 April Flavio

    Charlotte! This is so exciting! Congrats, congrats! I can’t wait to read the finished edition!

  3. 4 Cindy

    Charlotte,
    Love the excerpt from your novel!

    Love you,
    Cindy

  4. I’m almost done with the novel!! wooooohooooooo!!!

  5. 6 Kara "Sky" McGinty

    Awesome! Way to go, guys! 😀

    That’s an amazing accomplishment, Char! You’re an inspiration.


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