Thursday, August 20, 2015

Exclusive Sneak Peek at New Twi Fan Fic

Cover by chantelleexx
As I mentioned in my previous post, I am writing a sequel to my very first fan fiction novel, Evening Star which starts at the prom at the close of Twilight and ends with Edward leaving Bella in New Moon and is written exclusively in Edward's point of view. 

In the Night Watches actually starts with a short story I have already published, "On Our Way Home," and will continue through the end of New Moon and into Eclipse as Bella makes her peace with Edward and the Cullen family after they all deserted her with nary a goodbye. There will be significant angst and anger as Bella readjusts to having the Cullens, especially Edward, in her life once again while also balancing her relationship with Jacob. 

Again, this fan fiction novel will be written from Edward's POV as he watches Bella struggle with the betrayal she feels at the Cullens' return and reintroduction into her life. And Edward also has significant struggles as well, namely with the fact that Jacob has neatly inserted himself into Bella's life, and Edward does not trust him any more than Jacob trusts him and the Cullens as a whole. Bella is caught in the middle, and she is definitely not happy about it. 

So that's the premise of In the Night Watches...and here is a rough, unpublished chapter that occurs after the short story "On Our Way Home" (which is available on both Wattpad and FanFiction.net). I may end up placing something after "One Our Way Home" and before this chapter when I actually start posting officially (and no, I don't know exactly when that will be--sorry!), but this chapter in some form will be somewhere near the beginning of the new story. 

Enjoy! :)


            The doors slammed shut, the reverberations of Charlie's anger echoing through the small house.

            But I couldn't help being proud of Bella for standing up for me to her dad. She had been magnificent—declaring to Charlie that we were a "package deal."

            Of course, I couldn't blame Charlie for forbidding Bella to see me. While his mind was mostly silent to me, occasional images broke through.

            And if I didn't happen to live for Bella’s sake, I would return to the Volturi this instant and beg for my death—which I obviously deserved from the glimpses of Bella during my absence that came to Charlie during their argument.

            "I don't trust him. He's rotten for you. I won't let him mess you up like that again," he had told Bella, and, hiding in her closet like a child, I saw the Bella Charlie had to deal with during my absence.

            So thin. So pale. Her beautiful, expressive eyes dull and unseeing. Her arms wrapped defensively around her middle as if she were trying to hold herself together.

            And the nightmares—night after night of her screams echoing through the house, Charlie remaining in his bed, agonizing over Bella's pain yet unable to help her. His feelings of utter uselessness in the face of his daughter's grief and loss rekindled his anger toward me.

            And deservedly so.

            But Bella had threatened to move out if Charlie wouldn't allow me back into his house…and back into Bella's life.

            And Charlie, despite his worn-out threat of Florida, wanted Bella with him more than anything on earth.

            I could hear Charlie downstairs, banging his mug on the counter as he poured himself his morning coffee. He was still livid over Bella's ultimatum which basically cornered him. But as long as Bella was under his roof, he had some ultimatums as well: punishment for going missing for three whole days without a phone call and without any indication of where she was or whether she was safe. And these punishments would be designed to separate Bella from myself as much as possible…humanly possible, that is.

            I stifled a groan at Charlie's smug thoughts of curfews, rules, and many others schemes to keep Bella and me apart. No, it wouldn't be easy, but Bella and I could bend the rules in ways that Charlie would never know about.

            Starting with what I had done mere moments ago: stealing into Bella's room through the window.

            Bella sighed, and I whisked from her closet to the rocking chair, waiting to continue our conversation…about marriage, a topic dear to my heart yet repulsive to my beautiful girl. I could only hope that my considerable powers of persuasion would wear down Bella's resistance.

            "Sorry about that," Bella sighed, nodding toward her door to indicate Charlie's unflattering (but truthful) opinion of me that he had voiced.

            I shrugged. "It's not as if I don't deserve far worse. Don't start anything with Charlie over me, please."

            Bella gathered a clean set of clothing and her bathroom things. "Don't worry about it," she assured me, but her brief smile did not reach her eyes. "I will start exactly as much as is necessary, and no more than that." She widened her eyes jokingly. "Or are you trying to tell me that I have nowhere to go?”

            I rolled my eyes. "You’d move in with a house full of vampires?" I asked. Of course she would.

            "That's probably the safest place for someone like me. Besides, if Charlie kicks me out, then there's no need for a graduation deadline, is there?" Her grin was teasing, but beneath it, I could tell that Bella was completely serious.

            "So eager for eternal damnation," I muttered, definitely not joking, either. She truly had no concept of attempting to exist as a bloodthirsty, soulless monster…forever.

            It was Bella's turn to roll her eyes. "You know you don't really believe that," she stated, and her complete certainty surprised me.

            "Oh, don't I?" I asked rhetorically. She had to understand the repercussions, but all she saw were the human qualities of my family, not the monsters we were beneath the fa├žade.

            She grinned at me, utterly unconcerned about facing a fuming vampire. "No. You don't."

            Glaring at her, I opened my mouth to retort, but Bella cut me off. "If you really believed that you lost your soul, then when I found you in Volterra, you would have realized immediately what was happening, instead of thinking we were both dead together. But you didn't—you said ‘Amazing. Carlisle was right,’" she reminded me, triumph clear in her voice. Leaning toward me, she whispered, "There’s hope in you, after all."

            For once, my beloved rendered me speechless.

            Smiling, she suggested, "So let's both just be hopeful, all right? Not that it matters. If you stay, I don't need heaven."

            Slowly I stood and cupped her face between my palms, gazing into her beautiful milk chocolate eyes. "Forever," I agreed, still reeling from Bella’s revelation. I had been so self-absorbed these months without her that I had to readjust myself to the following the highly unusual machinations of her silent mind.

            Placing her thin arms around my neck, Bella raised herself on tiptoe. "That's all I'm asking for," she whispered.

            And then she kissed me....    


Hope you liked it! 

~Cassandra :)

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Camp NaNoWriMo


All of the essays have been graded and returned for the 2014-2015 school year, and all final course grades have been submitted. So, I AM DONE!!!! YAY!! :)

I will be teaching an online Fan Fiction class with Brave Writer during the month of July, but the class is a piece of cake compared to the other classes I taught during the school year; my last class topped 1100 posts in four weeks, nearly all of which I responded to point by point.

But July also marks the return of Camp NaNoWriMo--a more relaxed version of November's National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). Instead of the 50,000 words-or-bust scenario of writing a new novel as we do each November for NaNoWriMo, in Camp NaNoWriMo we set our own goals and write in different genres, if desired.


Cover by Chantelleexx at Wattpad

I plan to work on two novels alternately during Camp NaNoWriMo with an overall goal of 30,000 words--one thousand words per day, skipping the July 4th holiday. One novel will be a sequel to my first novel Evening Star, a Twilight fan fiction which has been titled In the Night Watches (for which the lovely Chantelleexx at Wattpad has created a beautiful cover!!), and the second will be a Jane Austen Fan Fiction (JAFF), a continuation of Pride and Prejudice (currently untitled), starting with Bingley and Darcy's return to Netherfield after the Lydia/Wickham fiasco near the end of the novel.


Austen Variations Blog Header
I have spent nearly a year absorbing JAFF (as can be easily seen by the list of books I've read this year as posted in the sidebar of this blog), especially from the wonderful site Austen Variations which features the work of some incredibly-talented writers of variations and continuations of Austen's novels. I've become a devoted fan of their work, especially that of Abigail Reynolds, Monica Fairview, Mary Lydon Simonsen, Kara Louise, Jack Caldwell, Jane Odiwe, and many others. I've been able to borrow many of their novels through the state-wide California public library system called "LINK +," with the vast majority of the books coming from San Francisco and other Northern California public libraries. I've also invested in a few Kindle books by these authors when their books are not available through the library, plus I've been reading additional JAFF on FanFiction.net, especially by Astonishment, AnotherSentimentalFool, SophieTurner1805, Shaelelina, and DarcyFan1. So I am really excited about starting to write my own JAFF!

If anyone else is doing Camp NaNoWriMo, please feel free to "friend" me under the user name Cassandra Lowery, and we can encourage each other along the way. The beginning of my Jane Austen Fan Fiction novel can be read from the Writing Project Info page.



Happy Writing!

~Cassandra xxxooo

Sunday, April 19, 2015

A Significant Switch...



Yes, it's been months and months since I've posted here, and that's for a significant reason. I've put Only by Moonlight on hiatus and have stopped reading all but a few ongoing Twilight fan fics, namely Nolebucgrl's "Getting Blitzed" and HopeSparkles' "He Came Along." (Oh, and one ballet one that I thought was called "Balancoire" but can't find under that title.) And I'll always read the work of ladylibre and Tardis19. But that's about it. 

The reason for this major change? 

I've kind of switched fandoms. 

Last May I wrote a Twilight/Regency (Jane Austen's time period) fic called "An Enchanted Evening" that bridged the two fandoms, and since then, I've been wrapped up in the world of Jane Austen. 



Especially since the school year began in mid-August, I've escaped from a tremendously-stressful teaching load through reading Jane Austen Fan Fiction (JAFF), mostly those based on Pride and Prejudice. I have become addicted to the novels written by the incredible writers at Austen Variations and have been reading their ongoing stories as well as tracking down their novels through our library system (especially those of Abigail Reynolds!) and reading them voraciously. I've also been reading P&P fan fics through FF.net, and if you're interested, here are a few of my favorite JAFF authors on FF.net:

Sophie Turner (who also blogs at A Lady's Imagination

Astonishment

DarcyFan1

Shaelenina

I have started to write a couple of JAFF stories--just an outline and a few pages thus far. I hope to write more over the summer when I'm only teaching one online class, a Fan Fiction course at Brave Writer where I have been teaching since 2002. I've reduced my teaching load a bit for the 2015-2016 school year by asking to teach less-intensive online classes at Brave Writer, and I'll probably be teaching high school writing for my final year at our homeschool co-op next year as well. 

Plus, we're graduating homeschooler #3 in June (I can't call him "a child" at 5'9" and 210 pounds--he's more of a linebacker and works in landscaping/construction three days a week and does his schoolwork for our homeschool and the community college on Tuesdays and Thursdays), so next year I'll only be homeschooling our youngest. But he is learning-challenged and needs lots of my time to keep his workload at grade level. I spend 3-4 hours/day schooling him directly, in addition to teaching my co-op essay-writing class and nine online courses each school year. I also have my own essay grading service, so I'm grading the work of other homeschooled kids across the country via e-mail. 

In other words, I hope to have more time to write after June, but no guarantees; my pain levels from chronic autoimmune diseases have increased significantly due to this unusually high-stress school year, so I'm going to have to rest a good deal over the summer in order to recover. 

Perhaps I'll return to finish Only by Moonlight. Or perhaps I'll return to pursue the sequel (for which I've written a few chapters) to Evening Star (which for some strange reason is evoking a ton of reads and comments on Wattpad where it's approaching a million reads and Pinned but Fluttering is nearly at two million reads). 

Or I may pursue writing some real JAFF. We'll see.... 

Anyway, this is my life right now, and I just wanted to let you all know. 

Take care, my friends!

Warmly,
Cassandra xxxooo