The Silver Lining | Contest excerpts continued

I apologize I’ve been MIA the last few days. I barely had five minutes on the computer. Life got in the way. Anyway, I went to my parents’ house this weekend and found a hard copy of my 75k gem of a trunk novel I wrote when I was around 16 or 17.

In case you’re not aware, I’m running a contest that ends this Wednesday. You can enter just by commenting, but for extra entries, post something craptastic you wrote as a teen. I’d love to read anything–even if it’s school work. But also if you have really craptastic newbie writing you wrote at any age that definitely isn’t even worthy of revision, link me to it as well and you’ll get the extra entries! For a list of books you can win, check the last two entries on this blog.

I promised I would post excerpts from my truly terrible novel I wrote in high school. This novel had very few scenes and mostly existential ponderings. There is an inkling of a plot (girl afraid everything will change once she graduates high school), but that plot really doesn’t show up until much later in the book. There are no character names either! Anyway, I’m going to post excerpts from this work over the next few days, the funniest passages I can find.

For now, here are the opening paragraphs to this amazing novel. Caution: read at your own risk. You may not want to have any beverages handy, because you WILL spit them out from laughing so hard.
I am transcribing this unedited, so you can see it in all it’s glory! Apparently I had a bit of obsession with unneeded commas and the word "that." Plus other terrible writing issues I’m embarrassed about, like my lack of contractions. Well, on the bright side…I’ve drastically improved! haha.

I was standing there, in the crowd, when it occurred to me. My whole existence seemed to come crashing down upon me, screaming the truth. Yet all the while I stood there, watching him, as if he was singing to me. Then it dawned on me. I’m just another face in the crowd, an invisible entity. I’m faceless. I’m nameless. Inside the crowd I become part of the blanket; just a tiny patch in the interweaving that makes up the elaborate piece.

I close my eyes and envision the quilt-work, only to find that when my eyes reopen the illusion does not disappear. i realize the purpose. It’s a cover, a facade, a trick used to hide the identities of the individual. As I stand alone, I become one. I’m not one with myself, nor one with the music that I am engulfed in. I am one with the crowd, with the very people that I find myself fighting against. We fight for a glimpse of the lead singer, or perhaps just a better spot. But I don’t know why. I am stealing the lyrics and the music so that I can take a piece of it home with me, as a memory. But it’s not my memory to have. It’s not even my concert to be sharing. Yet, I continue to soak up all the pleasure that the band radiates. Call me selfish, call me ignorant, and confused. But if you do, none of these would be the right words to describe me at this very moment in time.

Accuracy would call for words such as insignificant, invisible, inferior, and definitely non-existent. Because that’s what I am doing. I’m not existing. Someone who is on the other side of the room cannot distinguish me from the person next to me. I don’t exist to them. The only token I have to show for my outing is the memories I have, and if you would like to count it, then you may consider the ticket stub as proof. yet, a piece of paper holds no value for me.

As far as I understand, the only person who truly exists at this concert is the lead singer. All eyes are upon him: not the drummer, not the lead guitarist, but the lead singer. Although i cannot prove that he exists since I cannot see inside his head to check for the proof of the memories. But I do know one thing" he is not beneath the shadow: he is casting it. He is shading the blanket that becomes us. See that, I’m referring to the audience as us, as one entity, one group. We aren’t separate. We are unique. But we conform. we are drawn to it, to conformity, like force, an unwillingness to change the fate which we are coerced into submitting to.

Tears actually begin streaming from my eyes. No one notices. Why would they? I do not disturb their precious balance with my salty confessions.

That’s a good stopping point because I burst out laughing when I got to that line.

Stay tuned for more awesome writing like this tomorrow. I’ll try to find a spot with actual scenes and dialogue. I’m sure the dialogue doesn’t have contractions either and will be awesomely stilted.

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2 Responses

  1. WOW! You wrote a 75K manuscript at 17?!! Very impressive! I was like toying around with school essays at that age!

    Lesley

    • I used to write a lot. I remember I was really diligent about it. I wrote 1500 words a day before I event realized that people actually made word count goals. I literally had no idea how big manuscripts were supposed to be so I just kept writing until it felt long enough for a book. The plot definitely couldn’t stretch 75k, but whatever!

      Thanks for entering!

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