” A novel can be set in motion by an incident, a character, a location, a mood, by anything at all Sometimes the stimulus can be an idea, which will rapidly clothe itself in a character.” Cynthia Ozick
- The inciting incident happens in the first act.
- The inciting incident happens to the protagonist.
- The protagonist is usually passive at this juncture; the inciting incident is generally set in motion by someone or something else (a letter, a visit, an encounter)
I wrote for a contest on WDC in October NaNo Prep this short blip on Thanatos.
Thanatos noted every tick-tock of his favorite mantle clock, it was only a matter of time before another human interrupted his beloved solitude. If Hades hadn’t intervened, he would be living like a God should be but oh no, thanks to his supposed good friend Hades he’s a glorified errand boy fetching humans when their time is up while Hades gets all the fair goddesses. The women swarm around Hades but ignore the errand boy. Thanatos felt his life was cursed and he had no idea how to change it.
These humans have no idea how inconvenient they really are. They don’t follow doctor’s orders, do unsafe things and eat way too much and then wonder why their life ends earlier than anticipated. I knew it was too much to hope for, damn humans. I never get to drink a coffee and enjoy my pipe.
Thanatos sighed as he saw Mairin Leith in her doctor’s office. The woman looks like she is in her mid-forties, slightly on the young side for a death sentence. Although Hades does love redheads, that’s probably why he’s messing with her. Is she even hearing the doctor at all? Odd, She didn’t shed a tear or make a sound at all, unassumingly walked out of his office without so much as a word. Nor did she schedule any treatments. Very unusual woman, I need to see what she’s doing before Hade orders me to collect her and I can’t change her circumstances. Thanatos set his coffee on the table and vanished into the chilly autumn air.
He waited beside her old car, it looks like a Monte Carlo. What a wreck, it’s a wonder it gets her to and from. Thanatos pulled the hood up on his coat and fastened it. The air was nippy compared to home. He wondered why Mairin wasn’t cold as he watched her strolling across the parking lot blissfully unaware of his presence until the branch snapped.
“Who are you? Why are you leaning on my car?”
A hunter’s moon illuminates the abandoned old house with
traces of white billowy clouds linger overhead.
The malevolent glowing pumpkin sits on the tree stump
with a lurking expression if seen anyone would dread.
Raven shudders her wings and hesitantly opens her beak but
not a sound could she make to warn Poe of what was ahead.
Before that fateful Halloween night that changed it all
Raven had spoken with Poe, trying to warn him.
Poe said, never more and locked Raven in the great hall.
The witch and her glowing pumpkin came in a hurry
creating such a fury, there was no one but raven to recall.
What it was like before the witch cast her spell only
now her vindictive pumpkin returns each year.
Making sure that ghosts do her evil bidding and
confident the scared raven will not interfere.
The evil pumpkin savors the feeling of power
knowing his helpless victims would soon be near.
Raven shudders her wings and bravely opens her beak
Poe, Poe, can you hear me, remember your Lenore.
The pumpkin eyes flared as he heard Raven speak
Poe, Poe, hear me, I am her, the one you adore
At first, Poe spoke in a whisper then in a roar
Raven, Raven, Lenore, I love you forever more!
A tribute to one of my favorite poets, Edgar Allen Poe.
Mairin stood outside the courthouse clenching the divorce filing. She trembled and gasped for air. A stranger gawked at her as he passed slowly but said nothing. Get it together Mairin, you’ve been counting this down for five years. You’re almost there. “Take a picture it’ll last longer!” Mairin yelled at the nosey stranger.
Mairin took a deep inhale, straightened her shoulders and purposely strode to her car. I can do this. Initially, she was going to hang out the garage since the kindergarten run was canceled for the day she didn’t have to be back until 1:30 to do her afternoon run. She glanced at her watch and on a whim drove to the local college campus. She gradually drove around a couple of times observing the students coming and going. They have no idea how lucky they are.
Stop hemming and hawing, go to the admissions office. Ask what is needed instead of being a voyeur. Alright, alright I will.
Mairin checked her watch again, second guessing or looking for an excuse not to go but the clock didn’t help. She spoke to the receptionist who directed to an advisor. A slew of questions later and more documents in her hand, she was now enrolled in college. Imagine that, I’m a college student. A 47-year-old clueless college student. What the hell have I done?
Geez, I still have two hours to kill before my next shift. Hmm, when did that tattoo place open? Mairin laughed at some of the designs in the window and strode away. She opened her car and slammed it shut again. Why the hell not? I’ve finally stepped up to the plate I might as well look like a college student. She waltzed her butt into the tat parlor and told the clerk she wanted a tattoo. The man asked if she wanted to look at any design in particular. Mairin shook her head. “Nope, today is the day I’m tossing the chains to the curb. I filed for divorce and I’m serving my soon- to- be ex myself this afternoon. I want a chain bracelet with a broken link around my ankle. Maybe with one daisy so it’s a bit more feminine but I want the tattoo to look like a busted chain. This is my bust out day!”
“I can do that. Have a seat, I’ll get you the waivers. I do have to ask, any contagious diseases?
“Yeah, insanity. Other than that I’m harmless.”
“Okay, let’s do it.”
Dedicated to a dear friend who walks with two spirits, a woman trapped inside of a man’s body, fearful that any moment his/her life will be diminished by ignorance in rural Maine. The issue is very real for her because people there are not open to change. They cling to their conservative and fanatical religious beliefs like the clan does their white sheets.
There was a brief glimmer of hope
it floated like a mist over a river
when humanity’s door briefly opened,
acknowledging the possibility of gender fluidity.
But like our fickle climate, hope vanished
and with it came a renewed surge
of hatred and entitlement. Deny or destroy
anyone that dares ask for equality.
Even the moon withheld his glowing face
as he/she contemplates the next course of action
in this vicious cycle called a transgendered life.
Darkness prevails! The remaining shreds of hope
float away leaving only a trace of compassion
hardly noticeable in the grand scheme of things
when guns silence the masses and zealots
claim righteousness prevails.
I pray for sanity in this world.
Yup, I’ve lost my mind.
October I’m doing the NaNo Prep challenge to get ready for November and NaNoWriMo and a minimum of 50,000 words. You’re probably thinking, writer’s write, so what’s the big deal. I’m a poet. I generally don’t write lengthy pieces. Brevity is my norm. Not anymore, I’m spreading my wings and then some. Wish me luck or join me in the insanity.
Write a story or poem from the perspective of a pumpkin getting ready to be carved into a Jack-O-Lantern.
Evolution of the Jack-o-Lantern©Lyn Crain
Big, or little, oh my, each a different one,
Pick me; pick me, I hope
From one to the next, the excited children run.
The unlucky ones left behind will surely mope.
Because I’m the pumpkin a child chose.
Oh, what will kind of a face will I be?
So much better than being left for the crows
Will it be happy or scary? I can’t wait to see,
what the children create with their knife.
Once a simple pumpkin in the field
One very special moment I will come to life.
A jack o lantern, my true glory will be revealed
as I shine boldly from my special place.
Creating the magic of Halloween night
I am radiant in my chosen state of grace,
happy to have a Jack o Lantern’s exclusive right.
All spells and potions
Old witches and their notions
Love to break the rules
and cackle gleefully as
each captive pleads for mercy
Tanka 5 lines 23 w/c
1. Must be exactly 5 lines
2. Has a 5-7-5-7-7 syllable count
3. Does not have to rhyme