• The Writer


    Hello! My name is Laura, welcome to my blog! I write weird stories, collect dragon plushies and stay up too late with my nose in a book. I am a wife, mom and child saved by grace. My hope is that you find encouragement here or at least a smile or too.
    God bless!

  • “Now go, write it before them in a table, and note it in a book that it may be for the time to come forever and ever.”
    ~Isaiah 30:8.

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  • Quotes

    We have come from God, and inevitably the myths woven by us, though they contain error, will also reflect a splintered fragment of the true light, the eternal truth that is with God. Indeed only by myth-making, only by becoming 'sub-creator' and inventing stories, can Man aspire to the state of perfection that he knew before the Fall. Our myths may be misguided, but they steer however shakily towards the true harbour, while materialistic 'progress' leads only to a yawning abyss and the Iron Crown of the power of evil.
    ~J.R.R. Tolkien

    "The only just literary critic," he concluded, "is Christ, who admires more than does any man the gifts He Himself has bestowed."
    ~J.R.R. Tolkien

    “Fantasy is escapist, and that is its glory. If a soldier is imprisioned by the enemy, don't we consider it his duty to escape?. . .If we value the freedom of mind and soul, if we're partisans of liberty, then it's our plain duty to escape, and to take as many people with us as we can!”
    ~J.R.R. Tolkien

    "Writers who see by the light of their Christian faith will have, in these times, the sharpest eye for the grotesque, for the perverse, and for the unacceptable. To the hard of hearing you shout, and for the almost-blind you draw large and startling figures."
    ~Flannery O'Connor

    You write to communicate to the hearts and minds of others what’s burning inside you. And we edit to let the fire show through the smoke.
    ~Arthur Polotnik

    Words - so innocent and powerless as they are, as standing in a dictionary, how potent for good and evil they become in the hands of one who knows how to combine them.
    ~Nathaniel Hawthorne

    "There are forms of insanity that condemn people to hear voices against their will, but as writers we invite ourselves to hear voices without relinquishing our hold on reality or our right to control."
    ~Writing Fiction by Janet Burroway

    Christians have sometimes been suspicious of stories, because they really can influence you. If you read the Twilight novels once a month for a year, I think you'd be a different human afterward—and not a sparkly one.
    ~Nate Wilson

Heart of Hope’s Draft III Beginning

I’m very excited about draft III of Heart of Hope so I had to share the first scene.  For those of you who have read drafts I and II, you’ll see that  HoH is finally growing up. 🙂

How had it come to this? Knees and hands in the dirt, her arm stinging from the strike of a whip, Avalyn watched the cart holding her mother roll away.
Tears streaking her face, Rhea gazed back.  Unable to raise her hand, bound to the cart she called out to her daughter,
“Stay free!”
Her cry was met with the back of a soldiers hand to her face.
“No!”  Avalyn pushed herself to her feet and ran after the cart.
“Stay clear.”  The mounted soldier holding the whip warned, but Avalyn didn’t care.
“Let her go!”  Avalyn reached for the cart.  The braided leather of the whip met her hand, wrapping it around her wrist.  Yanked away Avalyn once again found herself in the dirt of the road.
“I said stay back!”  The whip fell again.  As it fell across her back, Avalyn screamed.  It fell again, and again. Finally it stopped.
“Let that be a lesson to you not to mess in the affairs of the Lord Regent.”
The whip cracked over her head, echoing in her ears.  As she watched the soldiers and the cart disappear down the road Avalyn sobbed.  Her back throbbed and she felt warm blood beginning to soak her dress.  Tears blurred her vision, her sobs racking her body but it only mad the pain in her back worse.
She was suddenly aware of the people watching her.  Villagers gathered to observe the spectral.  She tried to rise to her feet and stumbled.  Someone caught her.
“Av,” Avalyn looked up into the face of her cousin, Esten.   “I’m sorry.”  His shaggy blond hair shadowing his brown eyes.  He placed her arm over his shoulder, supporting her weight.  She hung her head and let Esten carry her away.

Heart of Hope Born Again

It’s happened.  My first novel Heart of Hope has been pulled off the shelf after almost three years of sitting.  I’ve blown off the dust and cracked open the pages and ever so slowly, new things are taking shape.

A few weeks ago my mind brought it up again, turning over ideas for changes, fixes for plot wholes I couldn’t figure out then.  It took a while, but Heart of Hope is finally growing up and maturing into something I can work with.  It’s going to be a different book when I’m done with it, but with the same people, same ideals, same places, and the same story.  (Same song different tune if you will.)

The plot has changed.  Two (soon to be three) characters have new names, and there’s a new twist in events.  I’m excited about it again. 🙂

I think I have my work cut out for me.  I’m sitting on Choices for a while, developing a new world, outlining/writing two stories set in that world, editing Heart of Hope again, and, working on an epic story with my husband.  Few!  Believe it or not, that’s how I keep myself writing, lots of projects at one time.  Keeps my mind in the writing mode. 😉  (Plus I get to world jump.  Who wouldn’t want to do that!)

There you have it, my latest writing update.

Until next time… may the Force be with you, stay out of the shadows, aim to misbehave and never meddle in the affairs of dragons.

The Beginning

Twelve likes and one comment… I guess I can go ahead and post that sneak peek. 😉

 

*     *     *

Ephraim

 

Still born.  Ephraim stared at the maid who held his son.  His dead son.

“My Lord…” She didn’t look Ephraim in the eye, but stood holding the still bundle of blood stained swaddling clothes concealing the boy.

“Kathryn.”

The maid looked up.

“What’s wrong with Kathryn?”

A woman’s scream broke out from behind the drapes leading to the bed chamber.  The maid, still holding the lifeless child, hurried back into the room.  More cries and screams filled the chamber, then… the cry of a babe.  Ephraim pushed back the drapes and stepped into the room.  Kathryn, his wife, lay on the massive canopy bed, her face slick with sweat and her eyes closed.  The physician turned to Ephraim, holding a live baby girl.  He gave Ephraim a faint smile.

“Twins my Lord.  Your wife has given you twins.”

The child was covered in blood, her face contorted in an aching cry.

Ephraim didn’t acknowledge, but rushed to his wife’s side.  He knelt by the bedside and took her hand.

“Kathryn.”

She didn’t respond.

“Hector,” Ephraim spoke to the physician.  “Hector!”

In an instant, Hector was at his side.

“What is wrong?”

It was a moment before he answered.  “I am sorry my Lord.  We were not prepared for the second child, it was too much.  Something was torn, she is bleeding and I cannot stop it.”

Ephraim gripped his wife’s hand.  No.  God, You cannot take her from me.

He rose to his feet and leaned over her.  Reaching out, he gently stroked her wet forehead then kissed it, breathing in her scent.  She still smelled of mint, like the day they first met.

“Kathryn,” he whispered.  “My Kathryn.”

There was a flutter of movement under her eyelid.  Slowly, she opened them.

“My Ephraim,” she whispered back, a small smile on her lips.  Ephraim tried to smile back.

“The children,” she continued in a faint voice. “Our children… Ephraim?”

Ephraim glanced at Hector.  The physician nodded, “She, the child lives me Lady.”

“She…” Kathryn breathed out. “Our daughter….the other?”

“A son,” Ephraim responded before Hector could say a word.

“A son… Ephraim,” she took a shaky breath.  “What shall we call them?”

“Whatever you want my love.”  Ephraim stroked her forehead with his thumb.

“Wrenna and Aaron.” she whispered after a moment.  “You…you choose the rest.”

“Kristine and… Walter.  Kristine for her mother and, Walter for my father.  How is that my love?”

“Wrenna Kristine and Aaron Walter Fulton.”  Kathryn smiled.  “Fine names.”

He nodded.

“Ephraim?”

“Yes?”

She whispered something, so softly, he couldn’t hear her.   He leaned in closer.

“I love you.”

A tear slid down his face.  He laid his hand on her cheek and kissed her.

“I love you too.”

(Copyright L.E.R. Jenkins 2013)

Opening Line

The opening line to Kaeley’s story…

“Eight years old and alone, but Kaeley wasn’t afraid.”

So readers, is it a good one?

The Novel is Done! Can I Sleep Now?

CHOICES draft I was completed last night at 9:40-ish. (Yes, I took note of the time. 😉 ) It all comes to a grand total of 173 (8×11) pages and 52,488 words. Why does that seem small? Just wait ‘till draft II. It’s going to grow. 🙂

Thank you God for this amazing story I love so much, and the wonderful characters I love even more. I pray it will touch the hearts of those who read it.

I had mixed feelings as I typed the last sentence. I felt like grinning my face off; I just finished my second novel! But I also felt like crying. (I’m so weird…) I’m very thankful I have two more books to write with these characters, plus editing to do, else I probably would have cried. 😛

As far as the title of this post goes… It would seem that when I’m in the midst of writing a novel, sleep tends to evade me late into the night. Plus, the closer I get to the end, the more insomnia plagues me. Guess what? I actually had a descend nights sleep last night. 🙂 Woot!

Well, here is to Kate, Terren, Connor, Sara and the rest of the gang. They made it through all the terrible, heart breaking, emotional, painful, physically difficult, confusing and hard situations I put them through. Hooray for my cast! Until the next adventure guys, you can relax now. 😉

CHOICES Sneak Peak: Dragon Landing

Here is a sneak peak of the chapter in CHOICES I just finished.  🙂

“Ready yourself,” Terren said after I don’t know how long.  I blinked and looked down.  The forest was gone; we now glided over green fields and hills, bordered by a rocky crag.

“Are we landing?”  The wind had picked up and I had to shout.

“Yes!”  Terren yelled back.

Uraeus began to beat his wings in a steady rhythm as we slowly dropped towards the ground.  Terren let out a quick whistle then shouted back at me,

“Hold on!”

Uraeus folded in his wings and dove.  I squealed, hugging Terren as tightly as I could.  Tears raced from my eyes and flew away behind me as the wind rushed by.  Laughing, Terren leaned against Uraeus’ neck, holding tight to the leather handles.  We dropped through the sky, the ground rushing up to meet us. 

“Hoe!”  Terren yelled and Uraeus opened his wings, bringing us to a jaw wrenching halt.  Much more gently, the dragon brought us to rest on the solid ground.

“Wow,” I said as I slid from the saddle.  “Now that was something.” 

Terren grinned at me, “I thought you might enjoy that.”

“Enjoy?  I’m not quite sure that’s the right word.”  I crossed my arms and gave him a cynical look.  “I don’t think leaving your heart, lungs and stomach behind is enjoyable.”

He laughed, “I suspect you’re being sarcastic.”

“Me?  Never.”  I winked.

“Right.”

A little scene from CHOICES — Chapter 6

I love this little scene, it’s one of my top favorites in the whole book.  Just thought I’d share it.  Let me know what you think.

 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Understanding

After the evening meal I sat outside the pavilion with Terren, star gazing.

“That one there,” Terren said pointing at a cluster of stars off to the right.  “Is Valiant, the warrior.  Those stars there make up his helmet, and three there are his hand, and the four aligning with those, make up his sword.”

“We have one that’s similar in my world,” I said.  “He’s called Orion the Hunter.  He has two stars for his shoulders, two for his feet, three for his belt and three for his sword.”  I drew Orion in the air as I spoke.

“I would like to see that someday,” Terren commented.

“I don’t even know if I’ll see it again someday.  It was my favorite constellation, though it’s only out in the winter time.  I always looked forward to seeing it up there in the sky.  Then I’d always be sad when it was gone again.”

“Stars can seem like close friends sometimes.  My father loved the stars.  He always told me they were all set in a special place by a divine hand for a season and it was up to us to discover their secrets.  That one there,” Terren pointed to a group of stars that looked like a crooked ‘S’ with two sets of four stars giving it wings.  “That one is called The Dragon; it was my father’s favorite.” 

 “It’s beautiful,” I played with my hair.  “What… what do you believe about divinity Terren?”  The question had been burning in my mind since we had come outside and I finally mustered up the guts to say it.

“Well, for one, there is no such thing as luck.  Everything is set in motion, nothing happens by accident, He causes it all.”

“Who is ‘He’?”

Terren looked at me, “Abir, the Mighty One.”

I looked away.

“Do you know Him?”  Terren asked, placing his hand over mine.

“I… I think I do, but not by that name.”

“My father told me Abir as many names.”

I nodded.

“But weren’t you… weren’t you angry at Him, when your parents were killed?  I mean, why would He do that?”

“I don’t know,” Terren sighed, “Perhaps I will never know or understand until the day I stand before Him.  To answer your question, yes, I was angry at Him, very angry.  To the point where I was a completely different man, but He held on to me and brought me Connor.  Connor helped me to understand that Abir had not abandoned me.  He has been the truest of friends.”

“I still don’t understand,” I mumbled.

“Understand what?”

“What I’m doing here?!  It contradicts everything Terren!  Places like this are not suppose to exists where I come from.  But here I am!  What is He doing?!”  I rung my hands in front of me.  It felt so good to finally say that out load to another human being.

Terren took my hands in his, “Kate, I am not going to pretend I have an answer for you, because I don’t, but I do know that somehow you were meant to be here.”

I looked into his face, he was sincere, so sincere.

“Thank you Terren, I hope you’re right.” 

He smiled, “It’s getting late, we have an early start tomorrow.”  He stood and helped me to my feet.  “Good night Kate, sweet dreams.” 

“You too,” I said.

He pulled me into an embrace, “Hold on Kate.”

My heart swelled and tears formed in my eyes and rolled down my checks.  I pulled away, hiding my tear streaked face.

“Thank you, good night.”  I ran to my room, shut the door, flung myself on the bed and cried.

Heart of Hope: The End (for now)

October 9th 2006 began a journey that changed my life.  I began working on a story that God put on my heart to tell, a story about finding hope in hopeless times.  On that day I embraced God’s calling for my life and have never looked back.  Now, four years, seven months, four weeks, four days and 63,000 words later, draft II of that novel is complete!  Though I still have at least one more draft to go, the hard labor, the countless hours, the frustrating days of pounded my head on the wall over this draft are done!

What am I going to do now?  Do it again!  Yep.  After all, I am a writer and that’s what I do. 🙂  But first, I’m going to tell you about this novel, my first novel.  It’s title is…. *drum roll*…….

Heart of Hope. 

And this is what it’s all about.    

Heart of Hope is the allegorical story of a young girl learning to trust God and find hope in Him through the darkest of days.  It is a 63,700 word fantasy novel, written from the depths of my heart.  The story takes place in a world I created, loosely basted off the area in which I live, (Washington State, the north-western side).  The heroine is named for my lifelong friend whom I’ve known (literally) forever.  (Love you Avie! 🙂 )  Here is the synopsis;  (Note: Yes, the name’s are different then what I put in the clips, and that is because I was keeping them secret until now.)

  When a stranger’s arrival in Arcana throws Avalyn into a world of danger and mystery, hope is the last thing she feels, as everything she knows begins to fall apart.  Her mother taken from her and her home no longer safe, Avalyn and her cousin Esten embark on a journey to reclaim their lost peace.  But what started out as a mission to bring back her mother becomes a quest to stop an evil from spreading across Arcana and devouring everything good in its wake.  Avalyn joins the mysterious stranger as the only remaining way to save her mother and return to the life she once had.  As her journey unfolds and darkness advances, Avalyn realizes that there is more going on than she first suspected.  She begins to wonder if there is any glimmer of hope, no matter how faint, left in a darkening world.  Can Avalyn learn to find courage and trust?  Can she rise above a heavy heart and go on?  Or will she give in to despair, letting her destiny slip away?

(copyright Laura Jenkins)

There you have it. 🙂 

What am I going to do now?  Like I said, do it again!  I’m going to begin outlining my next novel  (or two novels) in the next few weeks.  Other plans are… get a job, (yep, time to head into the working life) and figure out what I want to do for collage.  I took last year off so I could finish Heart of Hope and now it’s done, so it’s time to think about school. 

Other stuff:

I leave for Kansas this Thursdays!  I’m so excited!  I’ll be taking LOTS of pictures and will post them when I get back. 🙂

I have a lot of plans for the blog this summer.  I’m going to begin a series on character development that I am super excited about, (I love character development). Also, finish up Stephen of Scarborough.  (I even have plans for the next series after SoS.)  🙂

And…. I’ve been working on Connect The Dots articles, the next instilment on that blog should be up by the end of the month.   

Keep your eyes open for upcoming post and please subscribe to receive e-mail updates!

God bless and thanks for reading,
~Laura

Update #1

Hello readers!  Here we are!  It’s the beginning of May and week three of the final revision of Draft II! (Untill Draft III.)Six more weeks to go before the deadline and two chapters left!

Update on what’s mean happening:

1.     Chapter ten is finished and titled  “Unveiled”.  What’s unveiled you ask?  Ehehehehe……

 Here are a couple clips.

Suddenly there was a racket behind a half open door in the wall at the foot of the bed.  A very red haired, broad shouldered, bearded dwarf stepped into the room carrying what looked like an arm full of small potatoes.

“Blasted pantry,” the dwarf grumbled to himself as he pushed with his back to close the door.  “Never a clear spot to stand when you need one,” He tossed the potatoes into the pot over the fire, not bothering to peel them.

The moss moved again, slipping from its place around the tree and collecting in long bunches to either side.  Then Ava saw it, a scaled tail unwrapped from where it once lay hidden under the moss, no, not moss, wings.  What Ava had taken for great cushions of moss were actually feathered wings!  A slender body dethatched itself from the tree and climbed down the trunk, the claws on its two back feet digging into the bark.  Collected on the ground below the creator crouched, its wings folded behind it and its jade eyes fixed on Ava.  The creature was a forest dragon!

I’ll be starting on chapter eleven tomorrow.  Second to last! Eeep!

 2.     Just finished reading a book by Bryan Davis called, I Know Why the Angels Dance.  It was an awesome story, but very sad.  (I guess I’m one of those people who like sad stories.)  If any of you ever read it, make sure you have a BIG box of Kleenex handy.

3.     I have another surgery coming up next week on the 12th.  Remember the first one?  I’m going to have the screw removed.  It won’t be as big as the last one, no crutches for one, hallelujah!  But I would still appreciate your prayers.  It’s going to be hard, trying to get revision done and recovering from surgery, but, that was just the way things worked out.

4.     Ever get the impression God is trying to tell you something?  Lately He’s been impressing on my heart the importance of maintaining a good relationship with my family and not letting the fact that I’m an adult and there for “have my own life”, effect that relationship.  So, I’m redirecting where most of my focus is going and starting to put more of it into my family.  To those of you out there who don’t think your family is that important; your family is THE MOST important part of your life (apart from Christ), it’s up to you to make sure you keep that relationship going. 

 I CAN’T WAIT TO BE DONE!  I’M ALMOST THERE!  Thank you all for your prayers!

God bless!
~Laura

Novel Update: Out of a Wreck

Wow!  What a week last week!  Writing, writing and more writing, with more to come. 

And it all paid off.  Chapter nine is finished and Connect The Dots launched!

I can’t tell you how glad I am to have chapter nine finished.  It seems like it took forever!  The reason being, I was very discouraged.  I’ve been down about this novel before, but last week I think was the worst yet.  Honestly, I became so down I wasn’t a very nice person to be around for a few days.  Don’t want to let THAT happen again, (it would help a great deal if I didn’t let my worries about finishing on time get in the way of my personal Bible study *sigh*).  Despite the rough time I had rewriting it, chapter nine turned out nicely and I like it.  Here are a couple clips of chapter nine, title: The Sacrifice.

Clip 1

“I have to stop.”  Ava said after what felt like hours of climbing over rocks.  She was bruised from slipping in the dark and her legs felt numb. 

“It must be almost dawn,” Erin said.  They couldn’t see either horizon, but Ava imagined the east faintly lit by early morning light.  Erin turned to Ava,

“I’ll go up ahead a ways to see if the rocks lighten up,”

Ava nodded, too tired to answer.  Careful to watch his footing, Erin scrambled ahead, soon disappearing among the rocks.  Ava pulled off her quiver and leaned against a large bolder, stretching out her tired legs.  She must have fallen asleep for suddenly she opened her eyes and sat straight up.  What had she heard?  Dawn’s light had weakly crept into being.  Ava could now make out more clearly the rock strewn path they followed.  Standing, she looked around for Erin, he was nowhere in sight.  Then, she heard it, a faint cry, as if someone called for help.  Snatching up her “pack” she fought her way through the rocks, following the faint voice.  Abruptly, the pass ended, giving way to a clear path.  On one side the cliff face shot straight up in a wall of solid rock.  On the other, the ground fell away, disappearing into mist.

Cautiously Ava stepped onto the path, listening.  Erin was still nowhere in sight.

“Erin!”  She called, scanning around her.

“Help!”  The cry echoed against the cliff walls.  Ava ran until she came to a place where a piece of the ground had recently fallen in, crumbling into nothing.  It was here that Ava found Erin, clinging to the rock, trying in vain to set his feet in some crevice and climb to safety. 

Clip 2

Ava watched in horror as the human features were replaced by a hideous face lined with cruelty.  Pale, malicious eyes glared out at her, slowly turning a deep crimson.  The body seemed to morph, bending, twisting into a beast-like shape.  It rose in height, towering over Ava like a great oak.  Six horns sprouted from the now bold, rough skinned head.  Huge, black wings spread behind it, creating an aura of darkness, an evil cloak in which to wrap an ensnared victim.  The creature, now fully transformed raised its arms and bellowed,                           

“…Welcome to my nightmare!”

Ava screamed and doubled over as the pain abruptly returned, but in greater force than before.  She clutched at her body, as a wave of utter despair swept over her; consuming. 

“No!” her cry echoed around her, suddenly joined by thousands more, wailing their agony.

Terrible I know, but that’s all I can reveal.  Chapter nine is known as “The Black Moment”.  It’s the darkest, lowest point in the story.  I’ve had this chapter planed out for a long time, but I didn’t really know how I would put it all on paper.  (Thinking it up is the easy part, writing it is a whole different story.  [No pun intended.])   As I said before, I’m happy with how it turned out.  Chapter ten should be fun, I get to write all about my elves and dwarves, describing how they live and where.  Exciting. 🙂

I’m out of the wreck I was last week and this time I’m not going to let myself slip away from spending time alone with God and putting everything I do in His hands. 

Thanks for reading!  Have a great week!

God bless,
~Laura     

 

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