Since I last posted something humorous in terms of my writing, I thought I'd post something more serious. I'm posting the prologue to a manuscript of mine that's currently "on hold" to get a feel for what everyone thinks about this style of writing (first person present tense). Don't hold back. Be brutually honest. Maybe some of the comments will spark inspiration and I'll be able to go back to it (I've edited it a little bit to make it better than what I originally had). In any case, premiering for the first time...
by Bethany E.
copyrights 2009 ("poor man's" copyrights).
"Arrgg!" I growl. "Stupid claws. Stupid, stupid claws!" No way to read that book now. Even after all this time I still can't manipulate the claws to carefully turn a page. And I had gone to some much trouble to get this book int he first place! Not that I condone stealing. I don't. It's just that when all you have to do is hunt, sleep and hang out in a cave you get bored. At least, if you're actually a human. The other bears don't seem to mind. But they're real bears. I'm just masquerading as one until the damn curse is lifted.
I sigh. Really, how is that going to happen? It's not like I'm back home anymore where magic is commonplace. Oh, no. Unmeercifully the darned magician couldn't have even granted me that much. No. Not only am I not at home, I am living in humans' reality. Not only that, I'm in the United States of America to boot! But I'm not even in Salem where there's the stories of the witch trails, but up in the mountains! I'm not sure how I ended up here. Probably the magician's curse caused it. In any case, I've been here so long I'm beginning to forget how I would get home once the curse is broken. As if there's even a prayer of that happening. As if American women believe in magic. Ha! I'm fooling myself!
"Damn magician, damn bear form." I grumble to myself. I let a string of curses fly from my mouth without even trying to check myself. It's not as if anyone can hear me. It's rare a human comes this way. The other animals can sense that I'm not really one of them and give me a wide berth. This makes hunting even harder.
I sit back on my haunches considering the curse for over the millionth time. The magician hated my parents. He hated them because they were innately good. I mean, really good. Almost perfect. Unfortunately, they made one mistake. They imprionsed the magician for his crimes. Not that there weren't valid reasons for this, just that magicians--even the so-called good ones--hate being caged, jailed or inhibited in anyway. In that way they're like anybody else. But from where I come from they are the most powerful beings. Which, unfortunately, I can't remember where that is, it's been so long. I do remember what the magician told my parents, because they told me after the change--before I was sent here. In repayment for jailing the magician their first and only son would be cursed to live like an animal until some woman fell in love with him, and declared that love. For some reason, love seems to be the only thing that can ever break any curses. Magicians aren't even more powerful than love. And that magician was forced to admit to my parents that was the antidote to his curse. Of course, he was able to name when I was going to be changed and there was no way of breaking the curse before then. The day after my twenty-eighth birthday I would change into a bear. A huge black bear. The thing he didn't tell my parents was that he was sending me far away from them. So they couldn't help me. Nobody could, except for the woman I would fall in love with, who would love me in return.
It might strike people as odd that the magician chose twenty-eight. Most magicians choose sixteen or twenty-one. Unfortunately, that's something else I've forgotten.
And of course he'd send me to the least likely place that I'd find that love. The human world! He couldn't let me stay in a world that was used to magic. That would make it all too easy. I sigh again. So, because I get bored, I'm forced to steal from poor, unsuspecting humans. Not that I do that very often. I only have five books, and a few magazines. Magazines are even harder to manipulate. At least with hardback books I can get them open. Magazines are something I still haven't figured out.
I toss aside the torn book. Staring down the mountain I can make out a tiny figure. Squinting, I move down a bit to take a closer look. My heart begins ramming in my chest. The figure is female. She looks young. I give a silent sardonic thank you to whomever made the rule that beings that are enchanted cease aging until they are broken free from the enchantment. My own, twenty-eight year old heart continues to gain momentum. I watch the feminine figure getting closer and closer. It's too good to be true. How is that possible? Did some good fairy hear my prayer? Or perhaps the Creator Himself? Either way, I'll take it if it means I can regain my male human type form and not be lonely, bored or frustrated anymore.
"Please," I pray silently, "Let this be the one!"
I move even further down the mountain. I'm close enough to join her in just a couple of bounds. My heart jumps into my throat as her bike is about to hit a rock.
"Watch out!" I roar.
Glancing up she gives me a frightened look.
"No!" I shout, "Don't look at me! You're--"
Before I can even get the words out her bike encounters the rock and she goes flying through the air. I rush to her. With a sigh of relief I catch her in my arms.
She gazes up at me in shock.
"Are you okay?" I ask.
Her eyes roll back in her head and she faints.
Okay, that's the end of the Prologue. The beginning isn't where I encountered most of my problems, but if you all think it could be better, maybe it'll help with the middle!
Thanks and have a great day!