I used to write drabbles, back in my innocent youth; a hundred words at a time and a new dream every day, but buried underneath was the dream of being published. Writing a thousand words came fairly naturally too, but, like my hundreds, they lacked a place to go. Then came the moment of crazy discovery when I strung my thousand word chapters together into 75,000 and called it a novel. Years of editing followed, timelines to be fixed, names and spellings, and the colors of their eyes (amongst other things). Then Divide by Zero was released on the unsuspecting world. Soon it will be followed by Infinite Sum. Meanwhile I’m writing a hundred words, or a thousand, or editing more, as another novel, Subtraction, continues to grow. But I’m feeling green, appropriately for the season, because somehow it’s all that much scarier when the words have got to be seen to be believed. It’s not just a story struggling to be released; it’s a contract that needs to be fulfilled. So I write words and weed them and find, underneath, still that dream that somebody will read them.
Meanwhile here are some drabbles inspired by the month:
“Will you march with me?” Caesar asked. Brutus stepped to his side.
“The rabble,” said Caesar, looking around at the crowds that followed. “See how they run, in need a guide.”
“The pomp and circumstance.” He observed the marbled senate hall, where waiting senator’s flocked “Like a bride for her groom.”
“How true,” said Brutus, hand on his old friend’s arm, guiding his path. “How true.”
They laughed at an old man’s wrath and feeble woman’s prophesy. Meanwhile a black widow spider skittered away into shadows where night-webs grew. She knew and she waited, like a bride for her groom.
To fields of green, green grass he came, who once had fled in fear. He brought his tales of hope. He planned a future. Peace came near. The serpent-tongued he cast into the cold and held his staff, snake-bent but shepherd’s molding. He welcomed prince and pauper to the fold.
In fields of green, green clover then, he told of three-fold God. He promised fatherhood to fatherless, son-hood to all. He promised spirit’s truth to conquer lies and rescue lives.
In fields of grass he held his staff placed firmly at his feet. Its roots grew strong, Aspatria, Patrick’s ash.
The sun was shining—perfect weather for a party. Jugglers juggled. Mimes mimed. Kids and kittens ran wild. Soldiers guarded the streets of course, with so many pilgrims around, but even they couldn’t dampen the spirits of the crowd.
Dignitaries rode on champion steeds or marched with following cliques. Sometimes the kids said, “Who’s that?” when their mom’s said to cheer.
Then there was the man on a donkey, his feet trailing the ground. Funny the way the moms and kids went wild. We’d heard he was some great preacher, hero-style—looked like a clown, but you never can tell.
Sheila Deeth is the author of Divide by Zero, published by Second Wind Publishing. Infinite Sum is the second novel in her series,with a release date coming soon. And she’s working hard on Subtraction and Imaginary Numbers. Just for the record, yes, she is a mathematician.