Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The first (second version) of the project: The Dragon Undone

So it's official. I've decided. I am running with the project that spoke loudly to me and the one I think I have the best chance of completing.


Well. Because it's already done.

As mentioned in my last post, I took a crack at The Dragon Undone back in 2006 when I started e-publishing. I was determined, at that point, to be a romance writer and sadly, in most cases, that didn't work out so well for me. As my pal Catie has always said, I don't write industry romance. (Neither does she, btw, and if you're not reading her books, where have you been?) So for more than a few years, I've been trying to hammer square me into a round hole. Or vice versa.

Not this time. This time I'm revising the story to make it what it should have been all along. Will there be romance? Probably. It does tend to creep in.

At any rate: the book is complete. No waiting for me to finish a first draft. I am excited about revising the book. It opens the door to finishing the other two books of the trilogy. Most importantly, it's gotten me writing again and that, my friends, is crucial to this whole being a writer thing. Go figure.

And since I'm rambling about dragons and things, how about a sample of things to come?


Tomas reached into his pocket and pulled out a wad of cloth while he shook his head. "If that was a daydream, I hope I never have another. That sort of daydream leaves things behind."

He thrust his hand at Berdhan with the cloth draped over his fingers. What lay in the center of the bundle could be mistaken for nothing else.

Firelight flickered in reflection on the curve of a black dragon's claw.

Berdhan's stomach lurched, and he swallowed hard to keep last night's spirits down. "Who made this?" He looked around the table, searching out a guilty glance, hoping for the shoulder twitch that would give the prankster away.

But the others stared back mutely. Some shook their heads but non one flinched or grinned or began to sweat. Not one bit of mischief between them, damn it all.

"Made it?" Tomas frowned and glanced at the others as well. "No one made it, Berdhan, I told you. A dragon came."

"And left a claw where you could pick it up?" Berdhan leaned away from the thing as if it might somehow infect him. As if his luck could somehow get worse. "A silver dragon, you said. Why is this black?"

Tomas drew his hand back and refolded the cloth. "I don't know the way their colors work. I only know what I saw. I didn't make it up," he insisted, a little louder. "I wouldn't do that." His gaze met Berdhan's again, darkened in resignation. "You don't believe me."

"Toss it in the fire."

There was stunned silence on all sides. Berdhan shoved to his feet, this time welcoming the burn in his muscles. He was awake. Sober. It couldn't be a dream. He snatched the cloth-covered bundle from Tomas' hand and crossed the room to pitch it in the fire before anyone else could move.

"Hey! My mother gave me that!"

"It's just cloth, boy. It can be replaced." Berdhan watched while the fire peeled fabric away from the claw inside. Burn, he willed it. Catch fire. Prove yourself a fake. If it would burn, it might be wood. It could be a piece of many things.

But a dragon's claw, the legends said, could withstand any fire. It would carve stone and never break, spill the blood of a thousand men and never dull.

Someone jostled him, and Berdhan looked over his shoulder to find himself surrounded by a ring of curious men. Tomas fidgeted beside him, waiting.

"It's real," he announced when the last ashes of the cloth drifted away.
"I told you," Tomas murmured, "but you didn't believe me."

"I didn't want to believe you, boy. There's an important difference." He turned from the fire and faced the circle, taking the measure of each man listening. All his reluctance had been burned away with the disintegrating cloth. There'd been no time, no chance to avenge himself on the beast that had ruined everything with a swipe of its claws.

Now, today, that would change. Berdhan could reclaim his life, his reputation. His name. "Get your swords, your axes, and anything you need. We're going to fight a dragon."

And this time, he meant to bring all of them home.



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