Saturday, July 17, 2010

Death Scene Blogfest – Steam Palace

Blogfest O’ Death – Steam Palace

Now I know people have been waiting for this for a long time, so welcome to The Death Scene Blogfest hosted by the wonderful Tesse Conte! Go check out all the other great entries!

So as some of you know, I’ve been engaged in cutting scenes right and left, and this one unfortunately fell on the cutting room floor, but now it will live on forever on the internets. Bad Girl Viola has fled to the Southland, and now lives in a woman’s dormitory at the Great Southland World Exposition for Peace in Richmond where she works. She shares a room with Charlotte, a college student. She’s also taken a new name, Violet. But make no mistake…she’s still Viola through and through. Let’s just say she’s taken a liking to Charlotte and feels protective of her…very protective.

70-m2055 Charlotte shook Violet awake. “Violet! Violet!”

Violet jumped up. “What? Am I late?” The dawn was still dim.

“No, look at this!” She handed Violet a news-graph. “Two women, murdered in their beds last night. It’s Frenchie and Barbara!” Violet glanced at the crude drawings of their unfortunate friends. Charlotte tore the graph away, her eyes wide. “You did it. You murdered them!”

“I was here all night!”

Charlotte sniffled, huffing her breath.

Violet stood and wrapped her arms around Charlotte’s waist. “Listen. I’m sorry what I said last night, about killing you. That was stupid. I was hurt. I could never do such a thing, even in anger. I’m not like that. Come, let’s dress, find breakfast, and talk about it. We mustn’t let such things interfere with our day.”

She reached up and kissed the girl on the cheek but Charlotte turned from her.

“Violet,” said Charlotte, her dark eyes wide and accusing, “please swear to me you had no involvement in this.”

Violet’s mouth dropped. “I swear! And I can’t believe you would think such a thing. I am as shocked as you. How could something like that happen to people I just met?”

Charlotte attempted a weak smile. “Okay. Sorry.” Did Charlotte believe her? What did it matter? The poor girl could never understand these sorts of things.

Violet gathered her green Expo uniform. Of course, she had no involvement at all, except for creeping in their window and stabbing them in the hearts as they slept, holding their mouths shut as the life left their bodies. Barbara, for hating Americans and Africans, and Frenchie, for touching her friend. Violet protected hers. She tousled Charlotte’s head and smiled.

 

29 comments:

  1. No involvement at all, except for...
    That is awesome. I always enjoy your blog. Wish I had something to contribute. I almost killed someone, but not quite. Next time.

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  2. I think I dated a girl like Violet before. I love her ability to detach herself from her actions. There's a future for her in politics.

    Thnaks for dropping by my blog and liking what you saw. I'm having one of those work weekends from Hell. Roland

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  3. She lies so deliciously! I can't believe I'm sympathetic toward Viola, even after this cold blooded killing...

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  4. Haha "Of course, she had no involvement at all, except for creeping in their window and stabbing them..." I love that bit.

    Violet/Viola is soooooo tricksy :)

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  5. The pious shock is the best part. How could anyone think something so aweful of poor Violet? She is a piece of work and one of my favorite characters in the blog circles. Great job.

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  6. Love the detachment. Makes Viola a true bad girl.

    Well done Andrew.

    ......dhole

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  7. Well done, and in a short amount of words. Enough for me to enjoy, grab my interest but nothing too big or giving too much away. Nice work.

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  8. Nice little scene - pity you had to cut it!

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  9. Oooh, neat twist! Of course, I sort of expected it from Viola, but it was nice to see how noble her motivations appeared. Wish this had been longer so we could see more of the before and after of this moment!

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  10. I like the casual lack of conscience here, and the easy way she deflects suspicion.

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  11. A friend who would actually kill for you... I'm not sure that's such a bad thing. Kept in check, of course.

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  12. I love the way she lies as easily as she breathes. Makes the bad girl in her that much better. Well done!

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  13. Shame to cut such a well-propped scene. Vile thoughts with a smile and hair-tousle. Excellent.

    - Eric

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  14. Ahh...don't you love it when the bad folks enjoy what they do? Nicely done.

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  15. @Spock: Aww, murder is easy!

    @Roland: She's not quite as detached as this scene suggests...which is partly why it was cut...

    @Deniz: Well in Viola's mind, it's all justified.

    @Mia: Yes she is....

    @Raquel: Yeah...she is so pure and innocent...

    @Donna: She's bad to the bone.

    @Dawn: Thanks!

    @Block: In the replacement scene, Charlotte presses Viola until she confesses.

    @Sangu: I'll guess you'll have to buy the book! :)

    @stu: Who, lil ole me? Of course, Charlotte didn't hesitate figuring it out.

    @Tara: Charlotte wants no part of that...but I could use it...

    @Renae: She'll say anything...

    @Eric: I have a better one, so no worries.

    @Delia: Viola has fun!

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  16. Ha ha ha!!!! This was fantastic. =D

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  17. Very effective scene. The holding their mouths shut thing was absolutely creepy!

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  18. Obviously she had nothing to do with it! Great little scene. Enjoyed the interaction.

    Scribbler to Scribe

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  19. Ba ha ha ha ha ha ha! Clearly Violet is innocent. Loved it!

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  20. I love how you make me keep liking Viola even after she pulls something like this!

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  21. @RaShelle: Glad you liked it!

    @Christine: Can't let them make noise. ;)

    @Mesmerix: She's tots innocent.

    @Tina: Is it really a crime when you think about it?

    @Tara: I think Viola is really the heroine of the story...although she's more of the anti-heroine. She's definitely the antithesis of Sophia's uptight prissiness.

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  22. Hey there, sorry I'm so late!

    I love your Violet/Viola. She's definately the cool one here, and I love the way that whatever she says, it's like butter won't melt in her mouth...MWAHAHAHAHA!

    Thank you so much for sharing this with us and for joining in my Blogfest o'Death! I hope you had fun writing and reading the other entries, too.

    Tessa.xx

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  23. Andrew, I love the heck out of your dialogue. You've got a real knack for it. It sounds exactly like a real conversation, and the characters' voices are distinctive and very interesting. When it comes to dialogue, most either have an ear for it or they don't, and you seem to have it.

    There is, however, IMO one rookie mistake being made here (and agents and editors would unanimously agree), and that is far too many exclamation points (and perhaps question marks, too). This is the sort of common problem that makes its way into books about what not to do in fiction, and fair or not, it can be a mark against you and look amateurish.

    I think it's pretty clear from the initial exclamation marks, the context, and the dialogue that there's a lot of exclaiming going on.

    Here's how I might tweak it (the first two exclamation marks followed by two question marks seems excessive, so I tweaked the dialogue with the question marks):

    Charlotte shook Violet awake. “Violet! Violet!”

    Violet jumped up. “What, am I late?” [or, "What--am I late?"] The dawn was still dim.

    “No, look at this.” She handed Violet a news-graph. “Two women, murdered in their beds last night. It’s Frenchie and Barbara.” Violet glanced at the crude drawings of their unfortunate friends. Charlotte tore the graph away, her eyes wide. “You did it. You murdered them.”

    “I was here all night."

    Charlotte sniffled, huffing her breath.

    Violet stood and wrapped her arms around Charlotte’s waist. “Listen. I’m sorry what I said last night, about killing you. That was stupid. I was hurt. I could never do such a thing, even in anger. I’m not like that. Come, let’s dress, find breakfast, and talk about it. We mustn’t let such things interfere with our day.”

    She reached up and kissed the girl on the cheek but Charlotte turned from her.

    “Violet,” said Charlotte, her dark eyes wide and accusing, “please swear to me you had no involvement in this.”

    Violet’s mouth dropped. “I swear. And I can’t believe you would think such a thing. I am as shocked as you. How could something like that happen to people I just met?”

    I hope my comment is at least slightly interesting to you. Thanks for letting me read this!

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  24. @Tessa: Thanks for hosting! It was fun!

    @Mo: Thanks for the input. I'm going to respectfully disagree with you on this one.
    One person is accusing another person of murdering her friends. They are agitated. When I read the two versions, your version just sounds flat.
    I'm not saying that I don't ever overuse them, but I don't think it's overdone here.
    And like I said in my latest post...kinda getting sick of the "rules". I am a rookie, so I'm sure I have plenty of rookie mistakes.
    Thanks for the comments!

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  25. Thanks for the response, Andrew, and I can fully see your point about my version. Another option is to tag a line dialogue with "she yelled," or add a bit more description that "shows" the intensity. There may be a middle ground somewhere that captures what you want to convey without committing one of the most commonly bemoaned rookie mistakes.

    And please, don't call me Mo ;-)

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  26. Btw, I respect that you're not a rules guy. Some people do much better going off the rails, and I think you're one of those.

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  27. @MS3(does that work?): Dialog tags bad, m'kay?
    Here's the thing. Exclamation points are pretty much invisible, like the tag "said". There's a lot more wrong with the scene (in the context of the story) than punctuation, which is probably the easiest thing to fix.
    You should check out some of other stuff. :)

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  28. Ha! MS3 is good. A little "she asked" and "she yelled" never hurt anyone, IMO :-)

    We'll have to disagree on exclamation marks, because they are anything but invisible when overused. They're fantastic in moderation, but when used too much, they're distracting and they actually defeat their purpose, which is mainly to emphasize one line over another. I write some scenes with a healthy amount of exclamation marks, if the scene really calls for it, but I think it's good to be practice moderation with them.

    I'd love to read some of your other work, though I'm guessing you aren't looking for any help with nuts and bolts? Just big picture stuff? I'm flexible.

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  29. @MS3: I did send you something, but it got stuck in my outbox for some reason. let me know if it's still MIA.
    You can take my exclamation marks, but you can never take my freedom!

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