Weekend Writing Warriors: Unexpected shadows

What are you reading? I’ve just started re-reading The Witches of Karres, by James H. Schmitz. I read the book closer to 30 years ago; picked it up on a whim at my local library. I adored this book when I first read it, lost track of it and spent time since then trying to figure out who wrote it or what the title was. It’s delicious to rediscover a book you’ve been looking for literally for decades! 

Anyway it’s time once again for Weekend Writing Warriors! Peeps who sign our linky list before 12 midnight Saturdays Eastern time visit each other’s blogs for samples of their writing, published or not. 8 to 10 sentences is not much but you’d be surprised at the cool things our writers can get into that little framework.

So in the previous excerpt of my novel-in-progress (working title Night Shift) Kazimir and Devorah, along with Kaz’s friends Vishram and Kwame, set up the basement of the synagogue with a trap for the high-ranking demon known as Thaumiel. In the full version of the chapter, it’s explained that the centerpiece of the trap, an earthenware bowl called a demon bowl, will hum and vibrate when Thaumiel is nearby. The group has had a few minutes to wait, walking in nervous circles or idly playing with whips made of whichever element they’re aligned with. You can find previous excerpts here.

A loud humming filled the room. Covering my ears, I grimaced as the high-pitched sound drove into my brain. It stopped when two or three dozen writhing shadows dropped onto the bowl. They were shaped like humans but smaller. All but a couple slithered off. 

“What the fuck?” Kazimir shouted. 

Vishram snapped his fire whip at some of the shadows moving in his direction. “You said he didn’t use tarashim anymore!” 

“He hasn’t used them in two hundred years!” 

Oops. Well that doesn’t sound good! These are not your typical shadows, as you might expect. I’ll share a bit more from that chapter before moving on.

Thanks for visiting my little blog today 🙂 I appreciate all your comments, even if it’s to suggest a change or two. After all, different eyes see different things, and our work wouldn’t improve without new perspectives. I’m looking forward to tying up the current draft so I can look for some critiquers willing to read the whole thing. I’m sure there could be more worldbuilding and some repetitive words knocked out. It’s hard to find all the things that need improving when it’s your own word-baby!


12 thoughts on “Weekend Writing Warriors: Unexpected shadows

  1. Uh oh! A new element to the demons. 🙂

    “Slithered” is a great verb. Nice visual, especially for shadows.

    What am I reading? I’m about halfway through Captured by the Cyborg by our Cara Bristol. It is a page-turner. Just finished our own TM Hunter’s Friends in Deed. Fantastic book. It ranks up there with Firefly. 🙂 Next up is Rachel De Vine’s book, Songbird, and I bought the first book in Bernard Cornwell’s Saxon Tales series.

    I need to stop reading and start writing. I really can’t do both at the same time. I can read books and still edit. But the creative part of my brain refuses to switch on while my disbelief is suspended –to read a book. 🙂 Can you?


    • I hear you on the reading and writing problem. I can sort of write while I’m reading, though my writing tends to then sound like whatever I’m reading. Makes for a weird set of chapters when my reading list spans genres. Your list sounds pretty cool. I’ve just finished our Christina Ochs’ first 2 entries in her Desolate Empire series, which are a lot of fun and emotional at the same time. She’s got some great women characters!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Never good when plans go awry – sounds to me like they could be in trouble.

    I’m delighted to find someone else who likes Witches of Karres – I think it’s a really great book, and the copy on my shelves is wearing out as a result (to be fair it’s over twenty years old)!


  3. I’m reading FOREST OF RUIN by Kelley Armstrong right now. I like it a lot, but one of my favourite characters is being kind of frustrating right now. Though isn’t that always the way of things in YA fantasy romance novels? Anyway, great snippet! Why am I not surprised that something went awry? >:)


  4. I like the murder and mayhem of John Sandford. Humor added.
    Getting back to the humming and carrying on in your snippet, always fascinating, my friend.

    We live in the same state. I’d love to talk to you some time. I’m a solitary writer with 5 cats, don’t ask. If you have time call 845 624 3260 for a writing fix.


  5. Well that’s an interesting development all right! This story always has the best twists and turns. Great snippet. I remember The Witches of Karres! I’m reading an ARC of Jeffe Kennedy’s The Pages of the Mind, fantasy romance.


  6. Oh no! I had a feeling this wasn’t going to go off without a hitch.

    Just finished reading Annie Bellett’s “Justice Calling.” It’s hard for me to read fiction while I’m writing, but this was short, fun and clever, so easier to digest than most.


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