My first literary endeavor

Theric and Lady Steed have pestered me for years to finally get cracking on a novel. What they don't know is that I already started one.

When I was in the 6th grade (so, 12 years old) I decided to write a romance novel. A bodice ripper, to be specific, which was my new favorite genre. This is what happens when you send a voracious and not-yet-discriminating young reader off to babysit at the homes of people who read smut.

My novel opened with a scene lifted straight out of Gone with the Wind, which was another favorite at the time. I checked that thing out from the school library, no lie, eleven thousand times during the 5th and 6th grade. My heroine spent the first several pages trying to choose between ball gowns to wear to the big fancy ball that night. Descriptions of "apple-green, watered-silk" gowns lifted from GWTW as well.

Then, while taking a breather out on the back veranda of "Six Maples," a handkerchief with chloroform is pressed over our heroine's mouth and she passes out. She revives in a small shack, with her only companion the gray-eyed, strong-jawed, sardonic ruffian who has abducted her.

Aaaand . . . that's when I kind of ran out of steam. I wasn't really sure where to go from there, except I do remember that she called him a "cad" a couple of times. It seemed the thing to do. I couldn't decide why he kidnapped her, or how to still make him a good, kind, possibly-of-noble-birth guy when he's also a kidnapper. And I wasn't sure at what point in their relationship to start introducing the wild passion that must, surely, commence.

So it got abandoned at that point. And, afraid that my mother would come across it while demonstrating her love for me by cleaning my sty of a room, I threw it out.

Only now I'm quite sad about that. I wish I still had it, if only so that I could put it up here for all to enjoy.


kristen said... [reply]

Such a shame you threw it out.

There's still time for you to write smutty romance novels; better yet, LDS fiction smut--now that would be something.

Cicada said... [reply]

Or there's always the one where the pizza delivery man arrives at the door and the woman says, "But I didn't order pizza..." and then they get it on.

Oh wait. That's porn.

Nerd Goddess said... [reply]

Gotta love amateur writing. I wrote a good 100 pages in middle school of a fantasy novel. Then I couldn't figure out what to do next. When I went back to read it, I realized it was incredibly cliche, and couldn't stomach it for much longer than about 10 pages.

MBC said... [reply]

I wrote a most gripping soap opera in the fourth grade. I had never seen a soap opera in my life, but I knew all the elements--betrayal, pregnancy, a sudden incurable disease, etc. Around that time I also wrote a billion books based loosely on The Little Princess in which every piece of furniture (and every piece of furniture WAS lovingly described) was made of teak and imported from India and every child was either pure evil or an orphan.

Azúcar said... [reply]

Six Maples, hahahahahahaha.

I think it's a rite of passage for young teens to discover the romance novel, in particular the regency romance. He's a cad, he's a rake, he's a confirmed bachelor! He's arrogant and selfish! He's...my cousin? Yeah, a number of those regency romances had cousins falling in love. Accurate for the time period, sure, but why perpetuate it in 20th century literary works?

Scully said... [reply]

I too started novels as a child. The ones I remember involved shipwrecked adolescents, surprise inheritances, and, of course, handsome, gruff strangers. Some of the early ones, when I got stuck I would start working on the cover art. So I had a lot of quarter-filled notebooks that were partially illustrated. I should really see if I kept any of those. Three cheers for adolescent writers/dreamers.

Science Teacher Mommy said... [reply]

I am 95% done with a novel I too started when I was 12. My genre of choice at the time was fantasy. I've gone to great lengths to take out bits of "The Blue Sword" and a "Wrinkle in Time" which kept trying to creep in. I still can't shake the feeling that everything interesting to write has already been written, and if there is something more, than it probably won't be said by me. I'm reading "A Room With a View" this week. Oh, it is fabulous. If you are not faint-hearted this is one of the most brilliant movie adaptations I have ever seen.

Nemesis said... [reply]

Science teacher mommy, when you said "faint-hearted," is that code for "not freaked out by all the naked male frolicking"? I own the movie, actually, and love it. I think that first kiss in the field is pretty much one of the best movie kisses of All Time.

abby said... [reply]

My first and only novel was written when I was 12. It too was ripped off of GWTW. I still have it. It is highly quotable even though it is only 20 pages long.

Miss Hass said... [reply]

That is brilliant. I wish you had it so you could share it with the world.

Jenny said... [reply]

See, I think what is the most awesome about this is that I tried to read GWTW as a 4th grader since you were doing it. It's a good thing I didn't know about the novel. I would've told mom.

BEFore said... [reply]

Science Teacher Mommy

"The Blue Sword" -- I think that's a book I remember reading back sometime in elementary school. I've wondered what the name of that book was for some time. May have to hunt down a copy to make sure. Thanks. :)

I always stuck to writing short stories. No patience for anything longer. ;)

Th. said... [reply]


That is a shame. Can't have enough cad-calling, I always say.

Nerd Goddess said... [reply]

Oh. Just in case any of you are wondering, and haven't heard about this....


National Novel Writing Month. In case, you know, any of you want to write a novel. I did it last year. It was an interesting experience. Just FYI.

daltongirl said... [reply]

Too bad you didn't have a computer with the ability to protect your documents. We all suffer now from your thoughtless discarding of that golden mss.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...