Novel Writing Train - help tell Harry's story!

Any closet novelists, short story writers, script-writers or prose poets out there?
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Novel Writing Train - help tell Harry's story!

Post by cameron » Sat Apr 08, 2006 12:03 pm

Following the succes of the haiku train, I thought we'd try a novel writing train. Who says a novel has to be written by one person only? By using the wonders of the internet we can all write one together.

The basic premise is that each person should contribute 50 or less words at a time.

Please read the previous posts in order to get an idea of who Harry is and what's happening to him. Then try to move the story forwards.

Try not to go down too many cul-de-sacs. Remember that others have to follow on from what you write. (However, some deviation may make things interesting.)

I think this is an interesting exercise as it enables us all to see how plot and character develop. What will he do next?

It's like looking over the shoulder of Thomas Hardy. (Novel writing from Dorchester!)

Please feel free to jump on board.

Have fun.

Cam
Last edited by cameron on Sun Aug 20, 2006 5:24 pm, edited 6 times in total.

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Post by barrie » Sat Apr 08, 2006 1:05 pm

His eyes opened onto a wet street, he could feel it underneath him as he raised himself to his elbows. He stood up slowly, anticipating injury as each joint moved, as each muscle tensed. Wandering across the road, a shop-sign suddenly stopped his gaze. He wondered why he was in Manchester!

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Post by cameron » Sat Apr 08, 2006 3:12 pm

If only he could remember what had happened. His head throbbed painfully. He checked the pockets of his coat to see what they held. They were empty apart from a strange lump. Pulling it out, he saw that it was a roll of fifty pound notes; a big roll.

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Post by camus » Sat Apr 08, 2006 9:14 pm

Certainly disorientated, partially lucid, he slid the roll back into his pocket, and sat down outside the shop. He felt empty, something lacking or rather something craved. Agitation forced him to stand up again, and turning, caught his full reflection in the blackened glass of the shop: Poets Emporium.
http://www.closetpoet.co.uk

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Post by pseud » Sat Apr 08, 2006 10:00 pm

There was a stuffed raven in the front window, on sale for 3 pounds.

Damn, he thought. It was the only word he could think. Memory of anything before now made his head ache too unbearably. He decided to use logic instead, which stung more than it throbbed. What kind of a street was this? Had he been mugged? And if he had, why did he still have so much money?

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Post by camus » Sat Apr 08, 2006 10:16 pm

Fuck the questions and the answers, the day was too thick with gulps already. The raven looked good. His muted reflection; his raven. Anonymity suited him for now, he had cash in his pocket and he felt like shopping.
http://www.closetpoet.co.uk

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Post by pseud » Sat Apr 08, 2006 11:27 pm

The Poet's Emporium was the best suited store on the street for shopping. It was made of a dark brick, while every other shop had some sort of white or grey siding that made it look bland. It also had a more appealing name - "Bert's Laundrette" or "The Pony Tail," for examples, seemed both forboding and cheesy - and after looking inside their windows it was clear they weren't selling anything of use - nothing like stuffed animals.

(anyone want to edit in more British sounding names for the stores? - thanks)

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Post by camus » Sat Apr 08, 2006 11:47 pm

He turned the huge brass doorknob, barely able to grasp its circumference, and pushed, and pushed again. Solid. Running his trembling fingers through his greasy hair, smoothing back his head at sky angle, he noticed a small bell, an indent with a huge nipple of communication, he pressed it.
Last edited by camus on Sun Apr 09, 2006 12:33 am, edited 3 times in total.
http://www.closetpoet.co.uk

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Post by camus » Sun Apr 09, 2006 12:07 am

"Welcome to the Poets Emporium. Please read your poem, then enter!"
http://www.closetpoet.co.uk

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Post by cameron » Sun Apr 09, 2006 8:22 am

He was now even more puzzled. He had no poem to read and couldn't remember any. Suddenly the door of the shop opened. He spun round and there in front of him was a man: short-statured, dressed in a shell suit with an octagonal gold medallion hanging round his neck.

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Post by barrie » Sun Apr 09, 2006 1:43 pm

"You alright la'," he said in thick Scouse,
"How did you get here? Swim up the Ship Canal?"
It was obvious that the man knew him, which was more than he did. Coldness rose from his wet feet to his blank face - he had absolutely no idea who he was, let alone why he was here.

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Post by cameron » Sun Apr 09, 2006 2:30 pm

" I know this is going to sound like a weird question," he said, "But do you know me?"

"Of course I bloody know you!" the man with the medallion replied.

"Well..er..who am I?"

"You're having a laugh?"

"No, honest."

"You're Harry, ain't you?"

(Sorry - he's a bit of a Cockney Scouse.)
Last edited by cameron on Sun Apr 09, 2006 6:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by barrie » Sun Apr 09, 2006 3:14 pm

"If you say so, I suppose I must be." he said.

"Get yourself inside," said the Scouser, "I take it no-one saw you?"

He made his way up some bare wooden stairs, his soles scraping each gritty step. A door opened when he was almost on the landing - the smell of curry reminded him of how hungry he was.

"You'll have a story for us then?" asked a voice from inside.

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Post by Minstrel » Sun Apr 09, 2006 8:28 pm

" At the moment I don't even have a story for myself " he answered, peering into the room.

"What do you mean 'story'? Who am I?". He realised how ridiculous he must sound asking such a fundamental question.

"I dont even know what the fuck I am doing here.....Who are you?"

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Post by barrie » Sun Apr 09, 2006 11:23 pm

"Sit down," his host said.

He heard the door lock as the Scouser followed him in. The stranger handed him a warmed up take-away from a grubby microwave in the corner.

"Tell me something," he whispered.

"If you can't remember who you are, why you're here, or who the fuck I am - How did you know where to find me? You rung the right bell, sunshine, but you're telling the wrong story!"

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Post by cameron » Mon Apr 10, 2006 9:46 am

Harry felt the curry burning his mouth. Spices mingled; prawns (if indeed they were prawns) crunched and a thick oily red-brown sauce stuck to the basmati rice. His stomach heaved. His brain heaved too. Then a great blackness overcame him and he passed out.

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Post by twoleftfeet » Mon Apr 10, 2006 3:15 pm

He came-to face down in the black plastic tray containing the still-warm remains of the curry, now garnished with puke.
His stomach heaved again, but this time because he realised he'd been relieved of his bank-roll.

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Post by Rachel » Mon Apr 10, 2006 5:05 pm

Controlling a dull ache at the base of his skull, he raised his head. The room, which had been full of those people that he did not know only minutes before (had it not?), was now empty. He was alone.

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Post by Minstrel » Mon Apr 10, 2006 8:35 pm

He stood up looking for a kitchen, more specifically a sink, somewhere to wash the stink from his face. What time was it? The dim grey light looping through the window suggested late afternoon. Or was it just another rain cloaked anytime......Jesus, he didn't even know what month it was!

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Post by cameron » Tue Apr 11, 2006 9:15 am

Chapter 2

Through his oblong-shaped, titanium-rimmed, bought-from Spec Savers glasses, Dr Burgermeister surveyed Harry's exhausted face.

"So you think you're losing your mind?" he said matter of factly. "By the way, this consultation will cost your £100. I assume you have the means?"

Harry nodded.

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Post by barrie » Tue Apr 11, 2006 11:48 am

He knew that he had money - he just didn't know where. Maybe he could negotiate with the mind-quack.

"How about double your fee on a result?"

The Teutonic features of Herr Doktor took on deeper lines.

"So, you take me for a gambling man do you? OK, that's how it will be, but just let me warn you, I have powerful contacts from the past - if you get my meaning. Verstehen?

"I understand completely", said Harry.

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Post by barrie » Wed Apr 12, 2006 3:29 pm

"Are you afraid of needles?" asked Dr Burgermeister.

"Depends what you want to do with them." said Harry, "I'm a bit fussy about where they go!"

"Just a small injection, a little something perfected some time ago, it should bring everything back to you."

Harry rolled up his sleeve. The needle found the vein painlessly, almost instantaneously the smell of almonds accompanied a distant buzzing from inside his head. There was a white flash and a deep silence - He opened his eyes.

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Post by cameron » Wed Apr 12, 2006 4:08 pm

"That's some serious Mexican Mud you've loaded into that rig, Burger you old bastard," Harry retorted.

He felt his eye balls rolling around inside his skull.

"I haven't been this stoned since I quaffed 15 pints of Old Peculiar."

Dr Burgermeister smiled a malevolent, evil, sinister smile and said:

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Post by barrie » Thu Apr 13, 2006 1:20 pm

"How are you feeling now my forgetful friend, comfortable?"

"Fine" yawned Harry, "just how long does it take this crap to work?"

"Even as you speak, mein Herr, your lost neural pathways are being retraced and replaced, all the connections are being remade. In a matter of hours you will be your old self, and more!"

"And more?" growled Harry, "What's more?"

"A mere side effect, nothing for concern - your metabolism has been permanently slowed down."

"Meaning?"

"Add on another twenty five years to your life expectancy - I am ninety-five years of age!"

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Post by barrie » Sat Apr 15, 2006 3:15 pm

"Bloody Hell!" said Harry, "I could out live my kids, what the hell have you done?"

"I've helped you get your memory back, my friend - now you know you have children. Their names might just jolt some extras from that head of yours."

"I can remember where I'm from!" Harry said.

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