The incomparable A. Catherine Noon reminded all the ChiWriMos (and myself, the lone Californian ghost haunting the group) that it’s Promotional Friday! Time to toot your own horn, share a little of what you’ve been working on. This includes projects you haven’t published yet, so I decided to share a little of my July Camp NaNoWrMo Project, ‘On the Other Side of the Mask’.
This started out a submission to Lethe Press’s ‘Gents’ anthology. I talked to Matthew Bright about expanding ‘On the Other Side of the Mask’ when I submitted the original under 6000 word version in April, after he’d rejected the first version. (I’m still waiting to hear if he accepted the second version.) The expanded version has been my July NaNoWriMo project, which I worked on in paper notebooks at first, before returning to my laptop.
The big change is an extensive visit and look at the estate of Lord Ruthvyn, one of the pale lords who rules the city of Paradise, in the name of their Goddess. Shelley and Byron are two of his caged songbirds, but there have been others before them. What was the fate of the others? Will Shelley and Byron share their fate?
Here’s a scene with Byron interacting with Nathaniel and Olympia, Lord Byron’s two servants…
“You’re one of Lord Ruthvyn’s songbirds now,” Nathaniel said, as he approached Byron, playing with the white socks. They coiled around his hands, like a pair of flexible snakes. “Or are you still not good enough for stockings?”
“Or too timid to wear them?” Olympia asked. She steered him towards the chair, giving him a firm shove, so he collapsed into the seat. “Is wearing these garments too daring for you, little Byron?”
“The original Byron would have dared,” Nathaniel said, kneeling at Byron’s feet. He took one of Byron’s ankles in his hands, caressing it. “He would have dared anything.”
Byron tried not to tremble. Nathaniel’s touch wasn’t nearly as unpleasant as he’d have liked it to be.