I need to take care of a little business before we get to WRiTE CLUB. A while ago I signed up to be a part of Sheri Larsen's Rebel Writers Pledge, which means today I need to list one of my writer goals for 2012. It may sound simplistic, but my goal for this year is to determine which path I need to take to see my novel published. Will my query letter prove successful and land me agent so I can follow the traditional route? Will I pursue a publisher and see where that leads me. Or will I simply e-publish? I WILL know the answer to that question by December 31st...that's my pledge.
And now let's move on to the last chance for advancement to the WRiTE-Off rounds. Today we christen our eleventh winner and ready the ring for one final preliminary battle. It’s unfortunate that because of the number of submissions we received, there are WRiTER’s that will never get to take a turn in the ring. I could save them to use for the next iteration of WRiTE CLUB, but frankly its future is tenuous. I consider WRiTE CLUB only a modest success and doubt that it will continue beyond crowning a champion. To be fair, I’m going to wait and see what the response is like during these next couple weeks before I make a final determination. So it’s in your hands. If you would really like to see WRiTE CLUB continue, then spread the word and get your friends to come out and vote.
Here’s a little reminder of what we have in store for the next several weeks. Our twelve semi-finalists will be given the choice of letting their original submission stand as is, or augment it by expanding it to 500 words, or submit a new 500 word writing sample altogether. Then the twelve of them will be paired up (by random drawing) and a different bout will be held every day the week during February 6-11. On Sunday February 12th the six winners will be announced and again paired off (using the same 500 word writing sample) for bouts to be held every other day on starting on February 14th. Three winners will be chosen from those matches, along with one wildcard selection who’ll be the WRiTER who scored the most points but didn’t win his/her bout. The winner with the most points will be face-off against the wildcard selection, and the other two contestants will duel it out. Those two matches will take place on February 20th and 23rd. The final clash between the last two standing will be on February 27th for all the marbles.
Before we get to any of that let’s first announce the winner of round 11 and get the next round kicked off. The official score ended up:
ALNAIR - 8 votes LADY GRIMM - 17 votes
LADY GRIMM is now our eleventh semi-finalist! As always, you can check my WRiTE CLUB page for a breakdown of all the winners along with links to all of the writing samples.
We did receive a new submission last week, but I’m using my authority as WRiTE CLUB manager to suspend Rule #8 (If this is your first week at WRiTE CLUB, you HAVE to WRiTE), because of what I mentioned earlier. There are WRiTER’s that have been waiting a long time for their chance in the spotlight and it’s a little unfair that a newby would steal that opportunity at the last minute. So, both of this week’s contestants will come from the open pool. Without further ado....
Here are this week's randomly selected WRiTER's.
Standing in the far corner, weighing in at 251 words (we’ll let that extra word slip), please welcome to the ring……..
Late May, and it was already a million degrees outside. And wet. A veil of humidity pasted the few escaped strands of my stringy blonde hair to my sweaty neck, and I tried not to stir up dust as I walked.
It was my last day working with Dr. Green, the only large-animal vet in Dabb Creek, but it wasn’t much different from my first. Only that day it’d been storming, and Doc said to meet him in Mrs. Blalock’s barn.
Jackson and D’Lo had to tag along, of course. They didn’t think I’d go through with it. I think even Dr. Green was skeptical, which is why he said I’d have to palpate the widow’s best milking cow before he’d agree to make me his assistant.
Palpate. I knew what that meant. Fancy word for sticking your hand up a cow’s backside to see if she’s pregnant. They didn’t think I could do it because I was so little. Years of stretching and drinking milk had only got me up to five-foot tall, but I climbed up on that stool, set my jaw, and plunged right in.
“Make your hand like a wedge, Prentiss…” Dr. Green stood close by holding up Elsie’s tail. His man-sized plastic glove went all the way over my shoulder to my neck, and it was slathered in lubricant. It kept me clean, but I was getting the full experience of hot, smelly cow butt.
“Now slowly reach all the way to your elbow,” he said
And in the other corner, weighing in at 249 words, let me introduce to you ……..
Some days it’s enough that he breathes. The exchange of air grates on my psyche like the high-pitched squeal of a six-year-old at the sight of a spider. And his endless television shows, the intolerable stupidity followed by commercials selling drugs with side effects more damning than the symptoms they claim to cure. It all culminates into a farce.
Hands on hips I look at the obstinate water softener spewing its juices over my walls. Yesterday, I replaced the damn thing, the day before, the water heater. Disgusted, I walk into the garage where the car lays in shambles begging me to crawl beneath its underbelly hoping for an altered result.
None of it comforts. Inside I stare into the family room. The black leather chair faces a dark computer desk. I miss him. His stupid haircut. I could use his help as the house crumbles around my feet. He’s off serving his country, proudly wearing shades of green I associate with baby puke. Risking his life, our happiness, as if I didn’t matter.
If here, nothing would change, but his dulcet voice complaining about the ineptitude of the cashier, a speeding car, the fashion styling’s of kids. Solace in the fact that I can take care of myself I return to the pipes and with the twitch of a finger, bring to life the flames from a torch wishing in the back of my overtired mind I were Sigourney Weaver about to barbeque a bunch of freaking aliens.
As always, anyone can vote so leave yours for the WRiTER that swayed you the most in the comments below, along with any sort of critique you would like to offer. Please remind your friends to make a selection as well. The voting will remain open until noon Sunday. Remember, the amount of participation we see over the next couple weeks will help decide if WRiTE CLUB continues on.
Here in WRiTE CLUB, it’s not about the last man/woman standing, it’s about who knocks the audience out!
Where words are the true knockout!