2016, You Gotta Go

This week, I began typing my novel up. I started from what I currently believe to be its beginning and continued where I left off the day before. This is drastically different from my writing process over the past two years. I would normally hand-write whatever came to my mind when I sat down to my journal that day, but now I find myself continuing with the action and energy I left the last time. I feel myself making positive, forward progress now as I building from the beginning. I’m letting my mind enjoy this new opportunity to craft new scenes leading up to some previously written ones I hope to work in.

As 2017 is almost upon us, my two big resolutions are finishing a complete draft of my novel and securing representation by a Chicago talent agency. I’m hoping my vacation next week for my friends’ wedding gives me a new outlook on creative advances as it will be my first time abroad and shared with fellow artists.

Finally, here is a short excerpt from my novel so far. I hope you enjoy it!


Trent picked us up. Gwen and I walked from the party down the mountainous road to Bruxton. My brother, the town-legend quarterback, filled much of the truck’s cab with his stature and muscle.

“You left him?” Trent asked.


“To go to a fucking party?”

Guilt ate away at me, and Trent encouraged its buffet.

“Did Dad find anything?”

A tense moment passed. Trent exhaled.

“Nothing yet.”

“Any word from Aunt Melinda? Does she know?”

Trent turned onto Main Street. The carnival was now a cluster of shadowed metal and dead light bulbs. My aunt lived across town. She was nine months pregnant with a baby girl— another witch in the Blake lineage.

“Is she coming?” I added.

“She’s supposed to be on bedrest.”

“Is she coming?”

“Of course.”

We parked across the street from the park’s entrance. The cast iron gates were chained and padlocked. Dad stood with his arms crossed in front of them. His fishing cap and Carhartt jacket soaked in the moonlight slipping through the thinning tree branches. He stayed still as we walked up.

“Hi, Dad.”

“Kathryn, how could you be so stupid?”

“I’m sorry, okay? He said he’d be fine until Mom got there.”

His stern frown lightened a little. I wiped a fleeting tear from the corner of my eye.

“Let’s find him,” I said, walking up to the gate. “Trent, boost me up.”

Trent scooped me up by the waist until I could grip the top. His hands then lifted my feet until I could swing my leg over to straddle the gate. The doors shifted with my weight perched on top. Their hinges screeched and grinded.

“Now how are the rest of us going to get over?” Dad asked.

I looked at the thick metal bars. My heart hummed with magic it wanted to use.

“Oh. Duh.”

I leapt down onto the other side and gripped the doors. Melinda’s SUV pulled to a stop behind Trent’s truck. Mom flung open the back passenger door and hurried out to us. Melinda cautiously waddled out of the front passenger seat. Uncle Cain rushed to Melinda’s side from the driver’s side. I did not expect to see him here.

“Everyone, come on,” I called.

I channeled the magic fidgeting inside me into the gates. Their gritty iron bars turned a translucent, transparent green.

“Come on,” I beckoned.

Everyone passed through the gate’s doors. They looked back at the glowing structure after crossing the threshold. Mom wrangled everyone together behind me. I let go of the bars. They returned to their hard metal.

Mom held one of Dad’s high-powered flashlights in her hand.

“Lorene, we’ll find him,” Melinda said. The sisters embraced. “Cain will track him.”

“How long do you have?” Mom asked.

Cain glanced at the rising moon.

“An hour.”

“We better get moving then,” Dad said. He shook Cain’s hand. “Thank you.”

“Of course. Let’s find him.”

Mom had us split up. Dad ventured off with Cain. Mom stayed with her sister. Gwen, Trent, and I set off straight for the carnival’s heart: the Ferris Wheel.


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