This is the ongoing evolution, or is it a revolution, of a short story that wants to be more.
The Gates of Fire and Ash started out as a lark. A fun concept prompted by a fellow writer. Five thousand words Rachel said. Being a woman it seems odd to say fellow, but that’s English.
Three weeks ago, I posted about my struggles with Chapter 14–I can’t believe it’s been that long–I could blame my one-fingered typing brought on by a spinal cord injury for my slow production but to be honest, I was, at best, a three-fingered typist before the injury.
The truth is my story is fighting me.
The original goal of explaining the evil crowen in Chapter 14 was usurped, and Chapter 13 was revised to do the job. Chapter 14 got our travelers settled in Road’s End and foreshadowed the Fire Cloaks that absorbed Chapter 16. Chapter 15 provided a bit of comic relief (I hope).
Okay, the next chapter, number 17 with a working title of Recon, should be easy I tell myself. Send Dallaya and Royar to gather reconnaissance from a retired guy, Teador, that lives a few miles outside of town so that a major plot point can be revealed. In the meantime, Nantor, a competitor for Dallaya’s affections, will be sent to the docks to show he’s unworthy.
Everything’s going well until our prospective lovebirds stop for lunch and their evil birds of a feather, the crowen, attack. Darn. I’m two-thirds through the chapter, and we haven’t met Teador. But, it’s okay. They’ll get to Teador’s home, get their wounds treated and in the morning we’ll learn the plot point. Nantor can wait until the next chapter.
But, noooo. Teador won’t have it. He insists on joining the quest and Chapter 17 turns into two chapters.
The slog continues. The end is shrouded in fog, and I fear it may be beyond my reach.
(c) 2016 by David P. Cantrell