Today we have the added pleasure of announcing our first WRiTER who has earned a ticket to advance into the playoffs. It was a brillant battle between two very competent WRiTERs, but please join me in congratulating N.U. Endo as the winner of Round 1. Voting for the second bout remains open until Wednesday and that winner will be announced on Thursdays post.
If you're having trouble keeping up with what rounds are still active and taking votes, simply check out the WRiTE CLUB 2013 tab at the page. Every round and its competitors are listed there, if there is no winner beside the bout that means voting is still open. But remember...everybody who votes must register on the Linky List first.
Over the course of the next several weeks we will witness a clashing of writing styles, which always prompts some discussion about the fairness of having samples of different genre's in the same ring together. Broader still, maybe WRiTE CLUB is inherently biased towards YA WRiTER's since it seemed like the majority of the blogosphere (at least this hemisphere of it) is populated by those working in the YA genre. I do not accept either of those postulations, for many reasons, but the primary one being that I believe visitors to WRiTE CLUB...regardless of the genre they practice in...can recognize excellent writing! And it doesn't matter if that writing is YA, MG, Sci-Fi, Horror, Mystery, Fantasy, etc...etc. I'm confident that the WRiTER's that have chosen to submit their work (which I have the utmost admiration for) did so knowing that those 500 word snippets would stand on their own, without the benefit of plot or theme, and though there may be an element that suggests a specific genre (vampires are a dead giveaway), it is the way the scene is weaved that would be judged.
Here are Round 3’s randomly selected WRiTER's.
Standing in the far corner, weighing in at 493 words and representing the adult thriller genre, please welcome to the ring……..billypayne.
From the moment he heard the bell signaling the arrival of the elevator, his eyes locked on the doors. He had waited for hours outside her building, and when he finally saw the light in her office darken, he knew it would be only minutes before she was stepping off the elevator to get to her car. Almost instinctively, he re-adjusted the mask that covered his face and slipped on a pair of latex gloves, pulling them tight so they wouldn’t fall off during the madness.
Silently, the doors slid open and a second or two passed before the pretty blond stepped from the elevator. Traces of light from the low wattage bulbs made her hair glisten, an iridescent halo marking the prey as she paused on the cement pad before venturing out into the darkness.
He had selected her because she fit the profile perfectly. A powerful attorney, immersed in an extremely high-profile case, this one promised the front page the moment they discovered the body. And then, there were the other advantages, the ones he had managed to discover through the hours spent outside her bedroom window, late at night, at the moment she felt the most comfortable and the most secure. The long, golden hair pulled tightly back from her face during the day, but allowed to fall down past her shoulders at night; the voluptuous, firm body carefully hidden underneath the business suit, and the long, shapely legs that nothing could manage to hide.
His eyes stayed on her. Riveted. His breathing mirrored hers as he tried to limit the possibility of her sensing something was wrong and suddenly getting away.
A squeal of tires was heard on the ramp as a car climbed higher and higher into the structure. He counted the seconds between the sounds, hoping to use the noise to cover his narrowing the gap between them.
She was moving again. An almost casual gait as she crossed the lit drive and stepped into the shadows near her car. Suddenly, she stopped. She looked up and out into the darkness as if startled. Whether she had heard him or was simply unnerved by the lateness of the hour, she immediately sensed the urgency of getting into her car.
He was up and running by the time he heard the pop of the electronic door locks. Just as she grasped the handle of the door, her keys slipped through her fingers and crashed to the ground. In the moment it took for her to stoop and retrieve them . . . he was on her.
And in the other corner, from the women's fiction genre and weighing in at 499 words , let me introduce to you ……..Camille Atwood.
Peggy Bauer ignited the pink 4 candle, a remnant from her daughter’s last birthday. She glanced at her softly illuminated reflection in the black glass of the microwave oven and wished that the whole world was lit that way.
With both hands clutching the crystal serving dish, she pushed the door to the dining room open with her foot. A collective “ooh” resonated from her two children upon spying the beloved dessert.
“I made your favorite,” Peggy boasted and set the gooey concoction in front of her husband.
“You made your own cake? How lame is that?” said her teenage son.
“Of course I did. Who else would bake me a cake?”
“Well, dad could have bought one,” Mark mumbled.
“Oh, those bakeries can’t make a cake like mine.”
Peggy brushed the idea away like a pesky gnat and turned towards Dave. His eyes fixated on the glowing candle.
”Make a wish mommy,” demanded Caitlin, now five.
“I already have everything I want.”
With one puff, she blew out the flame. Dave leaned back in his chair and their eyes met.
“Do you want to open presents or have cake first?” he yawned.
“How about presents,” beamed Peggy.
“I think you might find something with your name on it in the hall closet.”
Peggy sprinted out of the room with the expectation that behind that closet door was something terrific and expensive, something that could momentarily erase the nagging feeling that life had somehow escaped her between soccer practice and PTA meetings. With sweaty palms, she closed her eyes, inhaled deeply and gently pulled at the door.
Sandwiched between Dave’s golf clubs and an old purple snow-suit sat a shiny yellow vacuum cleaner wrapped in a red bow like a pageant sash. A wave of embarrassment rose up inside of her. Peggy spun around to see if Dave was watching her reaction. He wasn’t.
With brave face, she dejectedly reentered the dining room, lugging the pricey instrument behind her like it was an unruly child.
“Look. Daddy got me a vacuum for my birthday,” she deadpanned.
“It’s one of those ones that never lose suction. It’s top of the line, Peggy.”
“Yeah, it really sucks,” said Peggy, sinking into her chair.
Mark eyed his parents to see if they’d notice him leaving the room.
“Okay, all puns aside, it really does suck,” Dave’s voice rose. “It’s supposed to be the best there is, Peggy. I thought you said you wanted one.”
Peggy gulped the remainder of her chardonnay in silence then rose from her chair with a jolt.
“Excuse me for just a moment.”
She lumbered up the stairs, her pulse quickening with each step.
There had to be a robin egg blue box with a moderately expensive bauble nestled, possibly hidden somewhere inside their room. She checked every drawer, under the bed, under her pillow, in the bathroom, even in her giant orange purse that hung on the treadmill.
It was charged on Dave’s Amex. Where was it?
Now it’s up to you. Which of these two samples resonated the most? In the comments below leave your vote for the winner of round 3, 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, here in WRiTE CLUB, it’s not about the last man/woman standing, it’s about who knocks the audience out!