Snazzy Snippets (Little Hero)

7:00 AM


Today I'm linking up with Alyssa and Emily to do Snazzy Snippets, because I can.


Here's how this goes down: It's a bimonthly link-up, as you can see above. Alyssa and Emily provide the prompts. We provide snippets (less than 500 words) of our writing in response, link our post up with the others, and share our writing like the awesome people we are. I'm hoping to start participating in this more, so here you go. 

(I'm answering two of the three provided prompts with snippets because I feel like it.) 

All of these come from Little Hero, my sci-fi-ish sequel novel set in Scandinavia. I talked about it more here.and you can find a tab for it in the "the writings" tab above with a cover and everything. 

Your First 500 Words: 

Once upon a time, a boy left his home and went to war.

He never came back.

I’m imagining what it must have been like. Not for me — I know that part, as much as I wish I didn’t. It comes to visit every night. But I wonder about everyone else; the people at home who tried not to cry when I left. I’m trying to imagine sitting on the couch between books and old plates of food and watching the news for some indication of what’s going on where I’ve been stationed. I’m running through the horror of hearing about the attack, and then hearing where I am. Maybe there was relief there. I don’t know. I’m trying to picture my face on the TV screens, before all of this, when the worst of it was that I was too young and too scared and couldn’t get up enough courage to even breathe properly most of the time and life was a maze of hospital hallways.

I’m wondering what it would be like to find out from the outside that Havard Madsen is a traitor, and that he’s gone to Sweden.

I can keep saying it over and over to myself without quite believing it. Havard Madsen is a traitor and they’ve dragged him off to Sweden. That’s nothing compared to what it’s like to drag my gaze away from the off-white ceiling and take a good long look at the cell around me. Three steps by six steps, assuming those steps are tiny. One cot, one pillow, one blanket. One toilet. Three trays a day; all of it surprisingly edible. Two different guards who bring those trays — one of them smiles and the other just gapes. One halfway decent shower every other day.

Plenty of time to think.

Plenty of colors, turning off-white and regular white and grey and steel and black into a lovely backdrop while my vision spirals and swirls in every color you could think of. It’s just gotten worse here.

As it turns out, thinking is the worst possible thing I could do all day. I curl up on the cot and wrap my arms out of the flat pillow, squeezing the life out of it, like it’s a barrier between me and the thoughts and dreams. Every night I’m back in the chair and Snare is grinning at me and Anders wants to shoot. The colors show up in my dreams now, too, tainting everything.

I don’t know where I am. I truthfully don’t. I fell asleep in the airshuttle and woke up here, in a cell, all alone. I’m assuming I’m somewhere in Sweden, but no one talks to me other than a basic command so there’s really no telling.

When I’m not trying to escape I’m a gasping, half-sane wreck on my one narrow cot in the middle of my one cramped cell.

As you can see, this is a fun one to write. 

A Snippet You're Really Proud Of:

But something is wrong, even after Lukas stops leaning back to shake me with one hand. I scoot to the other side of the backseat and peer out the driver's-side window to see what all the fuss is about. 
“Is that Britt’s jeep…?” 
Lukas laughs; not a friendly laugh. “No.” 
No, because Saija is hanging out her open window, hair blowing in the freezing wind, glaring at us like she can stop cars with just her looks. Who knows, maybe she can. 
But Saija. 
My heart almost stops again. 
My girlfriend stole a military vehicle and followed us. 
“JUST PULL OVER!” Lukas bellows. “STUPID GIRL!" 
“I TOLD YOU YOU WOULDN’T LEAVE ME BEHIND!” Saija shouts back. “NOT THIS TIME OR ANY OTHER TIME!” 
“I OUGHT TO SHOOT YOUR TIRES AND LEAVE YOU HERE!” 
Lauri sighs. There’s a little bit of panic in his eyes as he leans toward Lukas. “I don’t think that’s necessary…” 
Already I’m fumbling for the handle of the jeep door, fingers scrabbling on cold metal, not thinking clearly, trying to undo the locks. “We have to stop, we have to stop…” 

“Calm down, Madsen, what do you want me to — this is ridiculous.” Lukas can’t seem to stop laughing. “You see this? This girl who followed us? I’m finished. I’m retiring after this. I can’t do it anymore.”

I make no apologies for my first-draft writing. 

20 comments

  1. *SCREAMS SILENTLY* That was not silent but your first 500 words? I AM DESPERATE TO READ HAVARD. (I also realise I haven't finished beta notes on Pariah. I'M SORRY. I SHALL SCURRY TO DO IT ONCE I CONQUER MATHS.) There's not much action, but still so much tension and so intriguing and argh. Just. Also Saija = the best. Seriously. "My girlfriend just stole a military vehicle and followed us" -- HA.

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    1. (Haha, you're fine! I'm in no hurry.)
      Thank youuuuu! This is a sequel so I was a bit worried about posting spoilers, but it turned out fine so there you have it. I was only disappointed that I couldn't find something with food because the military is a boring place but oh well. Saija is probably one of my favorites to write.

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  2. Wow, these are both really good! They're both emotional, but the first one is more prone to making you super sad and be sad and weep a little bit too and the second one is charged more with an energy of frustration and anger. I like that the first one's melancholy through reflection and also find it interesting that for both of the openings I've read from your books, they've started in jails, which immediately also creates undertones of disgust, maybe even fear. The second totally has an angry disgust, probably because he's afraid for his girlfriend, who makes him happy (one would hope) so in other words I feel like these snippets layer emotion really well. Thanks for sharing these snippets with us! (And for putting up with my Inside Out analysis.)

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    1. Thank you! I have ALL THE FEELS about these characters and I do terrible things to them and it makes me feel bad every time I look at the story.

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  3. You already know how I feel about your writing, Aimee, but I have to say it again-- IT IS AMAZING. Ahh, now I want to read Little Hero SO BAD. (Basically, I want to read everything you ever write so bad.) But it's all so intriguing and I'm so curious and I'm already in love with Lukas, Havard, and Lauri-- and maybe Saija too. *squints at Saija* Yeah, probably Saija too. And I cannot believe this is a first draft. How is it so GOOD??
    *basically dies*

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    1. Mwhahaha. You can read it sometime next year, probably, if you're still up for it then. *nods excitedly*

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  4. *flails because I was flailing as I read this*
    Ugh this is so good and it's so hard not to stalk you and find your computer and find the file and just READ IT. (I won't do that, but it's tempting. And I wanna meet you, sooo. xD)

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    1. *flails with you*
      Noooo I will share it with you soon-ish so there is no need to steal. In fact, you're invited over and we can talk story. xD

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    2. "Moooom, Aimee invited me over and I need to go nowww."
      ...
      She said it's too far away. *pouty face*

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  5. *flails because THIS* THIS IS SO GOOD. I JUST... ESPECIALLY THAT FIRST ONE. I want to read Havard/Little Hero so bad now. They sound so goooood.

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    1. Yessss hopefully you can read them sometime in the near-ish future.

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  6. O_O *waits patiently to read more*

    Seriously, though, these are great, and I'm so intrigued. I'd love to read Harvard (and Pariah).

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  7. Aimee, these are fantastic. The first one builds such anticipation with the speaker - very well done! I can't wait to read more.

    Ciera @ The Write Things

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  8. You don't have to issue any apology because your excerpts are very good! You should take a look at my first drafts. It'll make your eyes bleed, lol. I can't wait to read more of your stories!

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    1. Thanks! Usually my first drafts suck but I have to say this one is turning out well. xD

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  9. I wish to read your thing.
    I wish to do the thing.

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  10. OHMYGOD, Aimee, that was INCREDIBLE! More please!
    (Not joking. We definitely need more Scandinavian War stories about traitors and stolen cars and whatnot.)
    Beth x
    www.thequietpeople.com

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hey. hey. talk to me. i'm a fan of comments and flailing with you. go for it.