I’m way behind for my entry in my own contest. Besides time constraints from ‘real life’, I’ve been struggling with motivating the main character properly. Another issue I’m finding is that even though I have a solid intro, climax and resolution, I’m having trouble building the conflict.
To deal with these, I’m borrowing heavily from a particular popular TV character (may be rather obvious who) to start with, hoping she develops on her own as I write. For the other problem, I’m just going to push ahead and write the thing through, hopefully the build up of a proper conflict will come to me in the writing. The first 450 words or so are below, with more to come later. I’m also planning on overshooting the 1000 word goal be a few thousand words…
“But what if he looks like an absolute dog?” The girl in the frame giggled and laughed as she chattered.
“He’s not I assure you,” replied the young woman, as she continued combing her long dark hair.
“But Amaleia! You’ve never even seen him!”
“It doesn’t matter, I am the daughter of the duke and it is my duty to protect our estate. Father would have wanted it this way. And besides, I have it on good authority that I shan’t be disappointed.”
A chime sounded in time with a pulsing light on the ornate frame of the live moving screen. Amaleia nearly jumped from her cushioned seat.
“Oh, its him! It’s almost time, I’ll see you at the ceremony!”
With the touch of a button the image changed to a black and white jumble of shapes through which the outline of a man’s head could just barely be discerned. It was the custom on Primenary for new brides not to see their mates before their wedding.
“Hello my darling,” came a man’s voice through the looking glass. “We’ll be arriving soon, is everything well?”
“Well as can be expected,” she flushed slightly and was glad that he could see no more of her at that moment that she could of him. “But between you and me I can’t wait for all of this business to be settled.”
It was something of a lie, but it was a white one. It wouldn’t do to have her betrothed thinking she had reveled planning the extravagance that had occupied her the few last days.
“I feel the same my dear. But I must go and make my own preparations. Tonight my darling, tonight the charades will be over and everything will be finished.”
The screen changed suddenly and Amelia found herself looking at her own reflection. Her wedding dress graced the mannequin behind her. Seeing it filled her mind with thoughts of the day’s excitement. The next several hours would be a flurry of flowers, perfumes, dances and dinners.
She would have sat in her fantasy for an hour had there not been a gently knock and the familiar shuffle of bare feet entering the room.
“Nan,” called Amaleia warmly as the old woman approached. “I’m so terribly happy.”
She embraced her old nurse, feeling the familiar coarse texture of her sand colored robe against her bare arms and the cool smoothness of the red silk which trimmed her hood.
Nan looked unusually solemn. She looked deep into Amaleia’s eyes.
“Child,” she said softly in her crackled voice, “give me your ear.”
Amaleia felt the delicate touch Nan’s soft knobby fingers on her ear, a sign that she had learned in her youth meant Nan had something important to say.