Friday, November 4, 2011

The Dark and the Light

I almost scrapped Golem as my nano project.  Really, I almost tossed all the prep and started over with the Sci Fi Bunny.  And it's all the fault of the research.

I'm setting Golem in a very real place, with very real history and very real.  And very, very not Happy Ever After.  Anyone who knows me knows that I go more for the sweet and less for the horror.  But there are parts of this story that *has* to be almost if not Horror.

Because 400 people, 300 of them Jews, died in a riot where very angry people focused their anger on those people who were different from them.  Jewish homes and businesses were destroyed.  Jewish women and children were beaten.

I knew that *my* story would have a happy-ish ending, but it couldn't completely be very happy, because I won't be rewriting history.  I just didn't think I could spend 50,000 words with such a depressing story.

In talking things over with a friend, she suggested that I write the sweet part of the story for a bit and maybe I'd feel better about it.  I tried and she's right.

But I'm coming to the conclusion that the story is stronger because of the contrast between light and dark.  You care more about the dark because you care about the characters.  And I, at least, care about the characters because they're really very sweet.

A short snip:

Mr. Grabel walked into the study, twisting his hat in his hands. "I don't want to be any trouble, Rabbi."

"No trouble," I said.  Mr. Grabel was a large, imposing man, but with my father, he acted like a young boy.  "The kettle is on already.  Do you take milk?"

He smiled shyly, even though his middle daughter was my best friend.  He'd known me all my life.  "A little honey, if you have it.  Thank you, Rachel."


Nano – Three days (I haven't really written much tonight): 5,832 words

Plan for this weekend: Spiders!


  1. Contrast is important, isn't it? I remember when, as a girl, I read a Trixie Belden mystery, and this woman was explaining to her that it was important to have a mix of colors for a crazy quilt because the dark colors made the bright ones stand out better, like dark days made the happy ones more memorable. Don't remember much else from that book, but that analogy stayed with me.

    Good luck with the Golem story.

  2. I love it Erin - excellent image.