Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Untitled Short Story (1)

*First two paragraphs of new untitled short story in the works.*

I asked Jesus into my heart when I was eight years-old and again when I was fifteen. They say the third time's the charm, but I haven't felt the need to ask again. My Sunday School teacher taught me the prayer the first time and I thought it was just a part of growing up, like learning how to ride a bike or getting braces. I was actually quite surprised when my best friend at my public elementary school, Janine, looked at me baffled -and not a little perturbed- when I told her I'd been "washed in the blood of the Lamb." That was when I found out that not everyone went to Sunday School like I did.
When I told my mother what I had done at church that day -we were driving home, I in the passenger seat and my baby brother Caleb in the car-seat in the back- she looked over at me warmly and told me how proud she was. "Some might say you're not old enough to understand it," she told me. "But you're certainly much brighter than other girls your age." She stopped us at McDonald's for our usual Hamburger Happy Meal (I always had to share with Caleb, who only liked fries), and in celebration of the big step I had taken she spoiled me with a soft-serve cone. But she was wrong, I did not understand it. Who ever does completely?

8 comments:

  1. Hi! A saw that you wanted comments about 'rich' language. Well, I don't normally comment, and I'm a hard core atheist, but as a writer, I wanted to help because you were very close to achieving what you were aiming for. Forgive me for editing without being asked but it'll go quicker that way!


    I asked Jesus into my heart when I was eight years-old... and then once again when I was fifteen. They say the third time's the charm, but I haven't felt the need to ask again.

    My Sunday School teacher taught me the prayer, and I innocently thought it was just a part of growing up, like learning how to ride a bike or getting braces.

    I was actually quite surprised when my best friend, Janine -we both went to the same public elementary school- looked at me baffled and a little perturbed. I told her I'd been "washed in the blood of the Lamb." By her reaction I found out that not everyone went to Sunday School like I did.

    We were driving home, I was in the passenger seat and my baby brother Caleb was in the car-seat in the back, as I told my mother what I had done at church that day. She looked over at me warmly and told me how proud she was.

    "Some might say you're not old enough to understand it yet," she told me. "But you're certainly much brighter than the other little girls your age."

    We stopped at McDonald's for our usual Hamburger Happy Meal. I always had to share with Caleb who only liked fries -it's still one of my fondest memories- and in celebration of the big step I had taken she spoiled me with a soft-serve cone.

    But she was wrong, I did not understand it. Who ever does completely?


    See? A little breathing room, a little word here and there to help with the rhythm and it's nice and tight.

    Write on!

    Chris

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  2. Thanks for taking the time to do this! Much appreciated.

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  3. It was intriguing and kept my interest. Chris's point of view did give it more breathing room but I still think your original style worked. I am eager to read more and I believe that is what you need, not perfection.

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  4. I liked this, and your original style worked for me, though I might to clean up the punctuation a bit to cut down the length of some sentences. I'd be interested in reading more. :)

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  5. Your start is enough to make me want to read more. The way you've said it flows smoothly enough. The only line I'd really like to change is the observation that not everyone went to Sunday school like she did. Is it the the fact that she goes to Sunday school, the *way* she goes to Sunday school, or is it the religion that operates the school? I'd be more inclined to say that 'not everyone knew the prayers I did'. Clears up the ambiguity :)

    Great start!

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  6. Thanks everybody for the kind words and readership! Really do appreciate it. Since this was my #teasertuesday for this week, I kept it nice and short, but there certainly is more to the story. I might or might not post more, but I'm going to try to get it published when it's polished, so I don't want to take first print privileges away from anybody.
    For the curious, the story is about a pastor who revisits the church she grew up in because she hears a small closed off and forgotten room was recently discovered that was long ago used by a satanic cult for Black Mass. So, possibly sheds a new light on what you've read. :)
    Madison, you have it right with the first guess. The line SHOULD read "That was when I found out that not everyone goes to Sunday School" (omitting the "like I did") or better yet "goes to church." Something like that. Thanks for the heads up on that, I'm fixing in my manuscript.

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  7. Darren, I like the language here a lot and the voice of the MC. I agree with Madison that some perceptions of Sunday school may not be universally understood. Other than that, I thought this was well written.

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  8. At the risk of sounding like one of those over-acting Harry Potter actors... that was flipping brilliant! Well handled. Huge. Tiny. Stupendous.

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