Saturday, April 21, 2012

Triple Seven

Faith tagged me for the Triple Seven meme so below is an excerpt from my novel, DAMAGED, which I am revising. I wonder how close to page 77 it will be when it is published. Given that I am adding scenes and cutting anything that needs to go ruthlessly, it may actually happen. Of course, I did some editing as soon as I copied this onto my blog. Okay, time to stop tinkering. Enjoy:


“We’re almost done. The nurse will give you the pills and we can go home. Okay?” I try to get as much of the gel off Joy's belly and clothes.

I know how awful it is to have anything done to your body. I remember screaming through all my debridement. They’d soak me in a tub and my rotting skin would peel off. What dead skin didn’t come off had to be scrubbed off. It was done daily to prevent infection. I was just a kid, but they’d hold me down anyway, and rub away my stinking flesh. I wonder how I survived as I scrape the paper towel over Joy’s belly one last time.

When I go to throw away the goopy towels, I look at the screen. It has the last shot, a grainy one, showing an almost empty cavity shaped like a giant kidney bean with a couple of blobs inside. One looks like a shrimp. The other blob is much tinier and round.

Joy stands beside me. “Is that the baby?

“Must be,” I say. “But right now, it’s just a bunch of cells clumped together. It’s not anything special.” I take a pen from the counter and draw on the paper sheet Joy had lain on -- two little circles, then four, eight, and finally a donut. “That’s how it begins. It’s just a cluster of cells.” But even as I say it, I marvel at how they know to become a pinky or a big toe.

“It’s so neat,” says Joy. “I want to take a picture with me.”

“You don’t want that,” I say, noticing how ugly and misshapen the head looks. “It’s like an alien from a movie.”

Most everybody I know has already posted excerpts. If you haven't, please consider yourself tagged and let me know. I've enjoyed reading everybody's wips. Here are the rules if you want to play.

1. Go to page seventy-seven of your manuscript.
2. Go down seven lines.
3. Post the next seven lines, sentences, or paragraphs on your blog.
4. Tag seven new writers.

Thanks Faith. Now I've improved seven paragraphs of my wip! Progress!


Faith E. Hough said...

Wow, this is so good, Vijaya. I can feel the emotion and the pain...
I'm glad you decided to play! I've been wanting to read some of your fiction for a long time. (Let me know if you need a reader for the completed draft...)

Mirka Breen said...

Powerful writing, just as I expected, and more, from the writer of her Mother's Eggplant.

Marcia said...

Oh, my, now I cannot wait to read the whole thing. Go, Vijaya, go!

I may post mine; I'm still a bit on the fence (from the new WIP). I went to p. 77 and I just don't know if that bit alone would make any sense. So maybe I'll choose p. 7, or p. 70, or something. :)

Vijaya said...

Faith, thank you for your comment her and also for the offer to read. I will take you up on it when it's as good as I can get it.

Mirka, thank you.

Marcia, I'm hoping this puppy will be ready before summer vacation starts. You know, it can be terrifying to put something online that you plan to publish. We worry readers won't like the excerpt, or that it won't make any sense whatsoever. But I hope you will play. Tweak those rules.

Ruth Schiffmann said...

Great excerpt, Vijaya. I so enjoyed the chance to read a bit of your work =D

Joyce Moyer Hostetter said...

So intriguing! Eager to read more!

Vijaya said...

Thank you for reading, Ruth and Joyce, and the lovely comments. I'm purring.

A.L. Sonnichsen said...

Well, I'm definitely intrigued. I'm especially curious about that debridement. Sounds awful! I might have to Google this to find out what it is!

Great writing, Vijaya!

Ricardo Miñana said...

have an interesting space, a great pleasure to read you.
if you like the poetry I invite you to my space.
happy day.
a greeting.

Molly/Cece said...

I just want to hug you, Vijaya. I miss you so and your words. I love what you are exploring here. I love that your are so deeply honest.

I think I will play next week. Rough week.

Vijaya said...

Amy, my character also wondered about debridement ... it's not what you might be thinking :)

Ricardo, thanks for reading, but I've seen message on other blogs as well ...

Molly, thank you so much. I am striving to write without a net honestly.