Saturday, September 20, 2014

of the creative writing - a mystery, an english class, and ... pears?

So I'm taking a rather exciting English class this semester. I've already done the required English 111 and 112, and come this fall semester it was time to choose a 200-level course. When I looked through the course list, only one particular class stuck out to me: Mystery in Literature and Film. Can I just say, splendid! My cup of tea n' all that. However it is an online class (because my schedule wouldn't allow otherwise), which puts a damper on things a little; just a little though.

For this class, the introduction assignment consisted of posting in a discussion forum a little letter introducing myself and a snippet of a mystery that had to take place somewhere I was familiar with (hometown, workplace, college, etc). 

This evening, although a tad bit nervous as to the outcome of such on-the-spot writing, I buckled-down and wrote a short snippet of mystery taking place at an old church of my childhood. I'm also using this piece, since it just happens to mention pears, for Rachel Heffington's Chatterbox this month.

I do hope you enjoy n' all that. Comments and criticisms are highly encouraged, as I know without a doubt this piece can use a lot of work.

There, at the back of my mind, a thought nagged endlessly, like a splinter in my hand trying to work its way to the surface. What was it? My mind raced. Something was unfamiliar about the churchyard where I stood. 
As I closed my eyes to think, all my childhood memories came flooding back. Of the many times I’d played red-rover in that patch of dewy green grass, or the secrets that were whispered behind that great oak tree, or the games of duck duck goose and tag played on that circle of rocks. Of filling bucketfuls of acorns as they dropped from the sky like raindrops, or the rhythm of those almost-ripe pears dancing in the wind as they hung from the small orchard of pear trees guarding one side of the churchyard. 
And yet, something stood out to me as not being quite right…but what? I closed my eyes again and breathed deeply. The smell of the fresh mulch that filled the flower beds to the left and right of the front doors to the sanctuary, and the all too familiar smell of Hemlock filled my nostrils…but wait, that’s it! There was another smell that mingled with the other familiar smells…something…putrescent. I opened my eyes again, and took two large steps to where I smelt the stench coming from. I saw the black eyed Susans and the velvety violets sleeping under the moon's light, and the…wait, there was something else hiding beneath the flowers. It, it couldn't be! Three fingers gently stuck out of the fresh mulch…Murder!

I can't say I am particularly proud of this piece or anything, but I gave it a try. If you have a minute, I'd greatly enjoy hearing any thoughts you might have. I don't profess to be a grand writer or anything, but I do like to dabble a little in the mystery and historical fiction genres. 

All text © 2014 Footprints in the Sand | All Images © 2014 Charity Klicka Photography

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