Welcome, Jennifer Worrell!

From Jennifer’s #WIP…

If I focus on the window I can ignore the pounding. 

At first the stars are figments of my imagination, a smattering of dust on glass.  The vein in my arm juts out, disappears into the crease of my elbow, as I stretch out over the armrest.  I press the tip of the needle down so I can hear the pop. 

“H!”  Their voices join their fists, their shoulders, and it’s only a matter of time before they break the door down, fling the half-dozen locks off the frame. 

Time is all I need.  Just a little juice to relax. 

Deep breath.  Watch the sleet salt the glass.

I slump in the chair, my bones jelly. 

My heart is going to beat itself out of my chest and take off running.

Timing is everything in radio.  Silence is death.  Everything has to fit.  I can’t sink if I can’t relax I can’t relax knowing they’re ten feet away I can’t shove this plunger to the hilt until I sink into just the right moment. 

One star appears in the sky, a flashbulb of white. 

My breath catches so I can’t swallow.  Inside a tremor rises and spreads.  I clench my toes and fists and press my limbs to the chair. 

“Open this goddamn door!”

I whizz through my memories for one that I want to spend eternity in, but there’s no time to be choosy.

Bright colors, fast music—a party. 

The rancid scent of G’s cheap liquid smoke reminds me. 

“You tell Lin one goddamn thing and I will slice your tongue in half.”  R’s voice rings in my ear as though she were standing next to me. I nearly drop the needle.

Of all the parties, that’s the one I snatch out of thin air. 

My loft is empty but I can feel the vibrations in my back, the cheap padding between leather electric with their fury.

The doorframe cracks, a screw pings to the floor.

If it weren’t for the twinge of pain in my finger frozen just above the plunger I think I—

Focus on the window.

Go back.

“How much do you remember?”

I lean forward and spit a tooth into the puddle of blood in my hand.  My head is ice cold, skin tight across my face.  J holds a bag of frozen corn niblets to my face with one hand and cradles the back of my skull with the other. 

There are worse places to sink into. 

I remember how I answered this question but I can say something else now.  Maybe on this side of time we’ll have a better ending.

“Where does it end, H?”

The rain pummels the window as though it’s going to crush my apartment from both ends, taking me with it.

My heel squeaks against the ottoman.

Another star shimmers.  Another and another.  Fainter but alive.

Go back.

 “Remember when I taught you the constellations?” 

A yell from the other side, a kick from a heavy boot, and the bottom padlock tings open, flying across the room.  Their shouts are more frantic now, celebratory.

This is the one.  This is the memory I want to keep, the last time the three of us were alive, together.

“Tell me again,” I whisper. 

“That—” she points. Unfurls her fingers to cup the largest star. “That’s how you find your way.”

My heart slows

the door splinters

I push the plunger

Go back.

Writer’s WIP Questionnaire – 2

  1. In the past two weeks, I have felt mostly happy about the progress of my WIP.

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Comment: I’ve been writing in dribs and drabs lately.  I’m finding motivation hard to come by.  Part of the issue is acknowledging all the potential directions this story could go, and not knowing the exact point I want to make with it.  I took some time off from work over the holidays so I can focus!

  • In the past two weeks, I have mostly managed to balance my writing life with the rest of my life.

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Comment:  I worked from home for about a year and a half due to the plague, and returned in person in August.  I’ve struggled with getting back into a routine.  Where does the time go?  But I discovered the power of the Top 5 list.  I have a running to-do list for work, chores, and writing.  Every day, I check the list and write down the 5 most important things on a separate slip of paper, in pencil.  When I erase everything, I add 5 new ones.  This has been a godsend!  I’m finally getting more done.

  • In the past two weeks, I have made drastic changes to my WIP.

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Comment:  I’m figuring out the characters, writing the scenes that come to mind, and seeing where the story takes me.  I’m also brushing up on some craft exercises.

  • In the past two weeks, I have mostly suffered from ‘writer’s block’.

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Comment:  But I’m getting better!

  • In the past two weeks, I have focussed on one project.

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Comment:  Nope.  I usually don’t focus on only one.  Switching it up keeps things fresh.  I wrote a couple of short stories (at least in part), and entered a writing challenge.  I forgot how much fun those could be!

Thanks for stopping by, Jennifer! Your writing style is beautiful and I can’t wait until your WIP is out! And I think I’m going to try a Top 5 list!

Jennifer Worrell

: If Jennifer were to make a deal with the Devil, she’d ask to live—in good health—just until she’s finished reading all the books. She figures that’s pretty square.  In case other bibliophiles attempt the same scheme, she’s working hard to get all her ideas on paper. She writes multi-genre fiction and the occasional essay, and is currently working on a sci-fi novel and picture books that may or may not be suitable for children. She’s always been drawn to “what-ifs” and flawed characters, and has never quite mastered the happy ending.

Find out more about Jennifer…

Links: Website: http://www.jenniferworrellwrites.com

Twitter or Facebook pages: /JWorrellWrites

Monthly newsletter: subscribepage.com/o7d4i7

Publications and other stuff: https://linktr.ee/JenniferWorrell

Published by morwennablackwood

When she was six years old, Morwenna wrote and endless story about a frog, and hasn’t stopped writing since. She’s the author of bestselling noir psychological thrillers, The (D)Evolution of Us, and Glasshouse, has an MA in Creative Writing, and can usually be found down by the sea. Her third novel, Underrated, will be published by #darkstroke on Valentine's Day, 2022. She often thinks about that frog.

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