I’m so wishy washy on this goal of mine to write. I have my huge pushes, then I stop, then go, then stop. It’s always been this way with anything to do with writing- my blogs, my social media accounts, my manuscript.
The biggest hardship for me is to make it a priority. The truth is, it is not. My kids are young, and I have a couple obligations/part time jobs. Writing cannot be a priority.
It can be a hobby. I write/edit when I can, and it will take years before I finish at this rate. I have faith in the burn and joy I have to get my story out. Someday, it will. I love my story. I want it to exist beyond laying on the floor near my bed.
I literally dusted off my manuscript from the corner of my room a couple months ago, and started work on it again. It is my push time, I guess.
I felt I needed to start blogging again, so I can work on building this up as my writers page. Maybe I will make a separate one some day. I want to track my slow, sometimes painfully slow, journeys I find myself on.
I need to surround myself with some writing friends.
I AM SEEKING BETA READERS OR CRITIQUE PARTNERS. I’d love to have another writer who understands the hole-filled boat I am in, as I navigate through writing my book. I will commit to a partner and deadlines work very well for me. I will gladly lose sleep over a good critique partner or writing group. Please reach out.
PLEASE HELP ME WRITE. PLEASE SOMEONE LET ME HELP THEM, AND WE CAN HELP EACHOTHER. I see so many hopeful authors out there. It is both encouraging and intimidating. It’s also a little disheartening there are so many. I think the only way to make it though is by teaming up and getting stronger.
I have changed a lot on my work. I wanted to include a sample of my writing at this point. It is a 93,300 word work in progress. I am 50% through my third edit. I have two more books started as the duologies. There are two second books. The readers will need to pick a side to follow at the end of my first book. They will either follow Mai or Emme’s story. Part of the theme is about being divided and what happens when we pick a side. We lose sight of the other.
It is a YA Fantasy.
Here are the first 5 pages! I hope you enjoy. Any constructive criticism is welcome. Anyone who would want to read more would make my day.
Pure Series: The Push
by Erin Yung
She leapt and fell from a high podium of power when she chose to give a life. The hope others placed on her had once lifted her up and simultaneously weighed her down like a heavy blanket. Hope. She exhaled a violent sob that crushed her chest, but as quickly as it exploded, she stifled it. Squeezing her eyes shut and holding herself as still as she could, she wept.
Mighty Mag and Kor, let my baby grow and love without consequence of my deceit. Please do not let the burdens of the world weigh her down.
The unwavering sunlight spread through her room, but it did not have the warmth to wash away the dark scars from the nightlong fight. Stains of blood weighed down the leaves and cooled in sticky pools at the base of her stone bed.
The broken fibers of her crumpled bedding stung against her damp skin. Still, Carya refused to move. She held onto her newborn baby and let the agony punish her.
Carya opened her eyes again to greedily take in the precious little face which tilted up towards her from under a thick bundle of blankets. She smiled despite the tears that drowned her face. How tiny and peaceful the baby’s features were, from the slightest little lips to the gently closed eyelids. They told her the eyes were golden, but she had heard they were always born golden. If the child took on her own eyes with age, they would become a dark, deep brown, almost black.
Brownish red markings swirled and framed the tiny features against the light brown skin. Their wild manner suggested a prized and talented Landmover, who would one day command and control the land by pulling it, pushing it, and manipulating it freely. These markings would be welcomed with joy and anticipation of greatness.
With a shaking, but delicate finger, Carya traced two parallel bands that circled around the baby’s forehead like a crown. Gently, she lifted a little hand up towards her mouth to give a soft kiss. The sweet little wrist had matching bands.
Carya too had these very same bands. Unlike a newborn’s markings, hers were long ago faded and buried as insignificant.
She bowed her head and closed her eyes again, as she set her cheek against the soft forehead. The warmth left a print on her cold cheek that blazed through her, and as much happiness as the close contact made, her heart burst. Pain set back in, but it wasn’t the pain of her body failing her. This pain went much deeper. Her core being ached with a black hole of despair, as she felt the last threads of hope slipping. She needed more time, but it was useless to plead for her own selfish wants.
The man she mixed with turned into someone so different from who she once knew. She had been wrong about him, and the mixing never should have happened. Fertility was hardly a thing these days. This whole miracle was purely and coincidentally a disaster of the lowest odds, and she would die for it.
Somehow, she would not take it back, but she ached to have been able to raise her child and be there every step.
Carya started trembling. She tipped her head back and closed her eyes to fight back the tempest of emotions. The child began to fuss, perhaps sensing the growing agony. Golden eyes opened slightly to give a glare at the discomfort. Carya looked back down, and their eyes locked. She froze for just a moment. The baby snuggled in and whimpered a little sigh before drifting back off into sleep.
Carya looked at her sister, who held a steaming, orange tonic out to her. Larel, her steady light, her beautiful sister, radiant even with puffy, swollen eyes and the shadows of no sleep. Carya let her hold the rough clay to her lips and drank the hot liquid. Her body winced as the line of fire seared down her throat, past her aching heart, and to her gut where it spread. Carya clung onto her sleeping baby, her eyes lingering on the double crown as Larel fussed around with her blankets. Warmth that matched the path of the tonic soaked into her skin where Larel massaged an oil into her exposed arms and legs. A sharp, sour smell filled the room. Larel’s experienced hands of healing rubbed and urged Carya to regenerate and bloom a miracle, but Carya knew it was in vain.
She wrapped herself fiercely, but gently around her baby. She held on with all her heart, as she tried to push a lifetime’s worth of love into the babe. Somehow if she could embed the eternity of love she felt all right now, it could maybe last, or at least linger in her child. With one final force, she tried to give everything she had.
“Sister, let me help,” Larel came up to Carya’s side again.
She had no energy or ability to fight as Larel eased her baby from her arms. The loss of the baby’s warmth made her shake, and Larel leaned in to try to rest the baby against Carya, like she still had a hold.
“I don’t know how this all happened. You have to keep it all a secret. All that I told you.” Carya begged. “The future is so heavy. Sentor must never find out or he… Larel. I don’t know what you’ll do. I’m so sorry. Please keep my baby safe.”
“It will all be okay. We took the precautions when we left. Sentor will not find us. No one would think to look here.”
“I’m so sorry we made you leave. Please keep my baby safe” Carya repeated weakly.
“You know I always wanted to leave. I wish we had done it a long time ago. I just wish,” Larel’s voice broke. “I just wish it did not have to be like this. I tried everything. I’m so…”
“Don’t,” Carya stopped her, “Don’t apologize. Not to me… We knew I would not make it through this. I am the one sorry. I ask you… I have always asked so much of you,” Carya’s words became broken as it became more difficult to breathe and her body seemed to be abandoning her by the moment.
“I ask this one last… undeserved favor. Please keep my baby safe.”
“You know I will.” Larel’s tears poured out again. “This child, your miracle, deserves everything. You deserved everything.”
Larel saw her sister fading fast. She kept talking, desperate that her sister did not leave with fear. “We will keep hidden. We will love and live happily. Born in love and your protection, I will continue this for you. There is light and hope with this child. I can see it.”
Perhaps it was whatever Larel had given her or the subconscious desire to be happy, but fuzziness and lightness started to return to Carya. She closed her eyes and clinging on to the beautiful image of her sister holding a miracle in her hands, she let herself drift away with them near to her.
“Do you have a name chosen?” Larel asked, but there was no response.
Anguish washed over Larel. Carya had given up everything. She leaned in close, holding the baby near too and held her sister’s hand, slowly feeling the radiant strength and energy fading away. Carya had lent this world her precious gifts and energies. She had once led the gentry with understanding and compassion, fulfilling the needs of every life that touched hers because Carya felt those needs like they were her own. If there had been one weakness of Carya, it was she had felt too much and carried the load of too many. As all of Carya’s light vanished, the crushing weight and pain also went too.
In one hand she felt a diminishing light, but in the other, she felt a pulse of power so strong. Larel closed her eyes and with an equally sorrowful and rageful force, she pushed forward into time. The strength of her sister, herself, and the baby she held in her arms thrust her through a tunnel of emotions. Brightness and darkness flashed at every beat of her pounding heart. When she opened her eyes, she saw the earth move around her, rising and sinking, crumbling, and caving in. There was darkness and anguish everywhere she looked. A sharp, unbearable pain in her side almost brought her back without seeing it.
But, Larel looked up, and though the world closed in around her, she saw the child of the most substantial power rising above into the light. Love and hope exploding in her heart.
Chapter 1: A Pact
The descent of the sun set fire to the depths of Mai’s golden eyes as he stared down his stone victims.
Emme stood behind with her feet planted on the bronze cliff edge above him and a steady arm held out, waiting for his command.
“Pull four,” Mai called out.
Next to him, a vertical, earthen spear rose from the ground followed by another. One after the other, he grabbed the perfectly timed poles from the air, and with rapid-fire, sent them hurdling at their targets in the distance. Two more spears rose in the same manner, and two more targets went down, crumbling into dusty heaps to the ground.
“You know, we should be trying to push our handles at our targets, not throwing them,” Emme stated.
Mai held out his hands to the distant heaps, “But that was so good. Did you see that precision? That control? Maybe I’m an Avion of Precision Strength. I think I can feel it in me.”
“Then you would have the mark starting to form.” Emme jumped down. Her sharp, dark eyes focused on Mai’s chest. They widened, wild with amazement.
“Is that…” she came in closer. A loose strand of her black hair brushed lightly against Mai’s collar bone. With a puffed up chest, he froze and held his breath. “…is that a circle mark starting to develop there? I never would of… Mai!”
When she backed away with an incredulous look on her face, Mai let out a breath and remembered how to breathe once again. He looked down, still feeling where her hair had brushed his skin, and tried to focus on how brilliant it would be to see a circle over his heart to indicate the mark of Precision Strength.
At 19 eclipses, Mai’s Landmover markings were still as clear and defined as they were when he was born. In another eclipse, he expected they would start to fade as Emme’s had started. To find a new marking now, this late in life, would make him a rare wonder. The last Avion had been Ranfor Oning, two generations ago. Born a Strength Fighter, he developed the markings and exceptional skills as Landmover, a very strange development, but a miraculous one.
Mai strained to look past the deep brown swirls across his chest. He went cross eyed as the patterns played tricks on him, and just as he swore he could make out a shadow of a circle forming, Emme burst out laughing.
“Your face! There’s no circle there, Mai. You’re good, but not that good.” Emme laughed in delight and went cross-eyed.
Mai’s face dropped and he gave Emme a disgusted frown.
“I didn’t really think I was.”
“You did. I think you really did! You were cross-eyed with hope!” She laughed some more.
“Okay. You had me. I mean, how amazing would it be to be an Avion. I’ve gotten a lot better with precision than I was, you know?” he stammered a little, but switched gears to poke at Emme, “I’m better than you.”
“Well, I could have the mark, and you would never know!” Emme challenged. Going cross-eyed again, she looked down at her fully-covered chest. They had been working hard, and Emme had split open her sleeves, wrapped, and secured the pale yellow fragments around her up to her neck.
“I don’t have to look for any mark. Show me what you’ve got!” Mai challenged.
Two spears shot up near Emme. She reacted, struggling to grab for them, but threw one and then the other so fast, one pole split the air just a hand length behind the other in a parallel path. One statue crumbled with a central hit. The other pole missed its mark, but still tore a huge corner piece off the neighboring statue.
Irritated, Emme pulled up two more poles on her own and hurled them with a vengeance. They hit their marks, and the statues exploded like they were dust.
“Three for four. The numbers don’t lie. I may not be an Avion, but I win!” He raised his hands to his imaginary crowd and started a flailing dance in response to the wild cheers. Emme rolled her eyes. Mai’s ridiculousness eased her flare of competitive edginess.
“I blame the craftsmanship of the first two poles. Sabotage,” Emme said with a raised eyebrow. Mai continued his dance, knowing with every flopping limb, Emme would lose interest in engaging with him. He smiled. Emme wasn’t a Precision Strength, but she was strikingly good. He felt that way about her for everything she did. He watched Emme pull up another handle from the ground, but this time, she held onto it.
Mai stopped his dance and watched as she gripped it with both hands, and extended it out in front of her. Her lips pursed together and her head bowed in focus on the spear in her hand. She opened her hands. It dropped before her on the ground with a thud.
“Really, we should work on it. If it is in us to push, it’s not just going to appear.”
Many Landmovers could pull the land to them, and they could in fact pull massive amounts and articulated forms, depending on the Landmover’s spatial understanding and radius of their reach. Only some could push and fewer still could manipulate the land freely.
The High Circle was a fortress that surrounded and protected the gentry in a mountainous grandeur. The hands of the most skilled Landmovers had built the walls up from nothing. It took pulling, pushing, and manipulating skills to be considered a true Landmover, though the word was loosely used for anyone with the slightest skill these days. Emme and Mai trained together in the hope to each one day earn the title of true Landmovers.
The markings of a Landmover, regardless of their skills, resembled a winding tangle of roots and would curve and spiral all over the bodies of that breed. Some believed the Landmovers of higher skill had more intricate markings. If this belief had any merit, Mai and Emme both would be highly skilled.
Emme’s markings were golden branches, spiraling across her forehead, around her black eyes, and down her high cheekbones. They never crossed each other, but filled her face with forever, fractal patterns. The same patterns wound themselves all over her body down to her very toes, but they were fading to a similar color to her tawny brown skin.
Mai had similarly wild markings all over too. Though not as abundant, his rust color markings stood out more, especially since his skin was a few shades lighter than Emme’s.
Mai reached down his energies and pulled a pole from the ground himself. Holding it in front of him, he felt the warmth of the formed stone in his hands. His own body heated up with the contact, and he tried to build the energy. There had to be an opposite force to his pulling, some untouched sensation to be found. He tensed and pushed out the stone with his arms. He visualized the pole projecting forward, but when he let go, his too fell to the ground. He brought it up to his hands again, only to drop it again.
The earlier rampage of achievement changed to an air of strenuous frustration. It fell silent between them except for the thuds of their poles as their army of targets now stood and laughed at them dropping their weapons over and over again. When the shadows started to grow longer and darker, the friends gave up for the day. They climbed up the steep hill and found a spot above their enemy army where they could fall back into their comfortable control. One after another doomed stone soldier, sometimes a few at a time, rose towards them and would fall to a shattering heap. When all laughter was smote down into flattened crumbles of carnage, they gathered their things.