Thursday, May 30, 2013

Historical Fiction Excerpt Two

"That evening, Sal said goodbye to Mrs. Beatle and Ralphy at the Denver station. She was thankful for the kind, travelling companion and the little boy who had worked his way into her heart. Mrs. Beatle gave her many admonitions about staying clear of strangers—especially bad-looking men—and the supper roast, which she was sure had gone sour. After a few hugs and a little snuggle from Ralphy, Sal sent them off with a wave and a blown kiss for the boy.
Back at home, she had been used to goodbyes—a small kiss on Pa’s cheek in the morning and a flutter of the hand to Ma as she headed out once more to work wonders in the community. But those farewells were always given with the knowledge that they would come home again. Maybe it would be later into the night than she would have hoped for, but they were there, and she felt security in knowing that.
With a lump in her throat, Sal realized that goodbyes took on a whole new meaning now. She hadn’t even said goodbye to Pa or Ma—hadn’t been given a chance to. Her heart constricted and one tear, then another, coursed down her face. Her hand still waved even though Mrs. Beatle and Ralphy had turned a corner out of her sight long ago.
Jerking around quickly while hastily wiping her tears, Sal saw Ella leaning on her crutches with the fading sunset behind glistening on her black hair. A gentle breeze swayed her violet, calf-length dress.
'Sal, will you sit by me now?'
For just a moment, Sal felt a flash of anger at the girl for not noticing the pain she was in after parting with her friends. But when she perceived the drawn look on the child’s face, she put her own feelings behind her and pasted a smile on.

'Yes, of course. We have to stick together now…now that I’m alone.' There was a little catch in her voice, but she crossed to where Ella was standing and placed a hand on her shoulder. 'We’ll make the rest of the journey pass in no time. You just wait and see.'"

Friday, May 17, 2013

Historical Fiction Book Excerpt One

Excerpt from my historical fiction work-in-progress:

"As night fell, Sal found that she was tired. She almost could have slept sitting up, but the seats converted nicely into bunks. Two African-American porters moved through the car, making up the sleeping berths. Mrs. Beatle wisely chose to sleep on the bottom with Ralphy, and Sal clambered up to the top bunk. As she did so, the bag of sandwiches slipped off the bed and fell into the aisle. Before Sal could descend to get them, the wiry man hopped off the lower bunk across the aisle and scooped it up, handing the bag up to her.
'Thank you, sir. I’m so tired I’m getting clumsy.'
'No problem, ma’am. Have a good night.'
Sal was struck by his voice. For such a little man, he had a deep, rich voice. It reminded her of the two times she had been to an opera, and the beautiful voices she had heard there. With another courteous tip of his hat, the man, broad smile, bulbous nose and all, disappeared behind the curtain across the aisle.
Sal had never liked heights, and the combination of the elevation and the movement of the train caused her to feel a little unsteady, but she bravely pulled the curtain across and dressed for bed. Below, she could hear Mrs. Beatle humming a ditty to her son, more off key than on, but pleasant nonetheless. Parts of the song sounded familiar, and Sal wondered if her own mother had sung that to her many years ago.
After she completed her toiletries for the night, Sal poked her head around the edge of the curtain and whispered, 'Is he asleep?'
'Yes, I guess all the excitement wore the little tyke out. You can come down and kiss him if you like.'
Sal pulled the curtain back and swung her bare feet over the edge of her bed, preparing to jump down. As she looked around in the semi-darkness of the car, she saw the tall, big-eyed man staring her direction. He was coming from the rear of the car, probably from the lavatory. As their eyes met, he paused in the aisle. Sal felt a tingle course through her body. After a few seconds, the man sat down on an unoccupied bunk and began digging through the bag he had with him. Sal exhaled heavily, realizing she had been holding her breath.
'Are you coming down?' Mrs. Beatle sounded tired herself and a little impatient that Sal had kept her waiting.
'No, that’s okay. I don’t want to wake him. Goodnight.'
Sal eased her feet back up in her bed. For a long minute she stared out in the deepening darkness, watching for any movement. All the passengers seemed to be asleep or at least quiet. Finally, she pulled the curtain closed. After a few minutes she was able to close her eyes and fall asleep, but not before she dug the envelope out of her coat pocket and tucked it deep in the sleeve of her nightgown."

Switching Gears to Historical Fiction

I have loved the time I've spent on humorous writings, and I haven't stopped altogether. But I had inspiration to start a new venture about a month ago, and I am a good way into my first historical fiction series! And I've got to say that I'm loving it.

In my next post I will be sharing an excerpt from Book I in the series, so be sure to come on back and check it out!