#RainbowSnippets: A Symposium in Space

Welcome to Rainbow Snippets!

Every Saturday or Sunday, those participating post and share six sentences of LGBTQIA+ fiction on their blogs. It can be their own. It can be someone else’s. It just needs to be LGBTQIA+.

To read a wide variety of samples from different LGBTQIA+ stories, go to…

https://www.facebook.com/groups/RainbowSnippets/?ref=group_header

For mine, Phaedra will continue where she left off last Saturday in A Symposium in Space…

Doctors learned ways to cultivate and clone sperm from existing samples which had been carried from Ancient Earth. A brilliant young scientist created something called sohm, a substitute for sperm which could be used to create a fetus.

Women could hand over their ova to a fetus creche, where it could be grown in warm fluid filled with all the essential nutrients needed to develop it. This was a much more comfortable way of having a child than going through pregnancy.

I wondered if we hadn’t lost something in abandoning the rite of childbirth. I’d never known my mother, not really.

 

Interested in what you’re reading? Want to read the whole novella? Here’s where you can buy the book…

Nine Star Press: https://ninestarpress.com/product/a-symposium-in-space/

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Symposium-Space-Feast-Words-ebook/dp/B07PGB15FY/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3BPACY58MCCMV&keywords=a+symposium+in+space&qid=1552937461&s=digital-text&sprefix=A+Sympo%2Caps%2C239&sr=1-1

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1130883509?ean=2940161507872

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/a-symposium-in-space

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/928136

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Me Me Monday: Conversations with Christopher

Christopher sits on a chair facing a small girl with coppery curls and bronze skin, wearing a little red jacket and green skirt. She carries a large, brown teddy bear with a much smaller nose than more realistic stuffed bears which have been popular. It’s Grace, the main character of my Work In Progress, Wind Me Up, One More Time and her faithful companion, Theodora Bear.

Mist surround Christopher and Grace in this place with no objects other than the chairs they sit upon.

Christopher: I admit, I’m jealous. Our scribbler is putting My Tool, My Treasure aside so she she can work on your story during July Camp NaNoWriMo.

A red curtain materializes behind Christopher and Grace.

Quartz: (For once, it’s his voice coming from behind the curtain.) Now you know how I feel!

Grace: Hey! (She glares at the curtain and Christopher, squeezing Theodora.) Our scribbler was writing about me long before she thought of either of you! I’ve had to wait 30 years for her to come back to my story and I’m only a child!

Christopher: That’s right. You were in the very first story our scribbler wrote back when she was eleven years old.

Grace: That’s right. She wrote it in a teddy bear journal her best friend, Nathalie got for her. Nathalie told her to write all of the stories which were waiting inside her to be told. This is why the princess in that story, the one the original Grace rescues is called Nathalie.

Christopher: And your sister and idol, who raises you in Wind Me Up, One More Time is called Nathalie.

Grace: Yes. Our scribbler still has the teddy bear notebook. The story embarrassed her. A lot. She put it aside and didn’t look back at it for years.

Christopher: She didn’t forget you, though.

Grace: No, I suppose she didn’t. There was a steampunk call for Torquere Press. This made her starting thinking of Wind Me Up, One More Time, of going back to that first story and making it better. Of making Ted Edward Bear Theodora Bear. She had this idea, where Theodora was going to go from being stuffed to clockwork. Some of that idea went to Maia’s artwork in the factory.

Christopher: Maia?

Grace: I’ll get to Maia. You’ve got to tell this in order. It’s a storyteller thing. Ask Nathalie.

Christopher: (who doesn’t mention that he’s also Happily Ever After and knows a few things about storytellers himself, but that’s in his universe, this is Grace’s) Ah.

Grace: Anyway Torquere Press stopped paying people and went out of business. Wind Me Up, One More Time sat all lonely, without any place to tell it or any reason to go forward. Others stories had places. It didn’t.

Christopher: Yes, my own story has often stopped, because other stories or blogs were more pressing. Please continue.

Grace: Our scribbler offered a Wind Me Up, One More Time to Nine Star Press, a changed tale from the one rattling around in her head. She was trying to make it a holiday story. It’s still a holiday story actually. Only Nine Star Press didn’t want it. She offered it to Mischief Corner Books. They said with a few changes, it might be just right for Shenanigans Press.

Christopher: Which is Young Adult. So that’s what our scribbler is working on for July Camp NaNoWriMo. A revised version of your story.

Grace: Revised means changed, doesn’t it?

Christopher: Yes.

Grace: Uh huh, only she’s really changing it. There’s so much more in Wind Me Up, One More Time, stories within stories. Nathalie has a much bigger part, too. I’m not sure where it’s going. I hope our scribbler can finish it by the end of the month.

Christopher: Don’t count on it. She didn’t finish My Tool, My Treasure by the end of April, even though she made the word count goal of 50,000 words. The rest of the story has to wait for NaNoWriMo.

Grace’s low lip begins to tremble.

Christopher: Um, well, I could be wrong. The scribbler seems to have an idea of where she’s going with your story.

Grace: Yes, but scenes keep surprising her. There’s a lot more.

Christopher: What is Wind Me Up, One More Time about?

Grace: Nathalie and I live in a town called Verity our mum brought us to. It’s mostly women and girls. Our factory in the center of Verity is where almost everyone works. It’s kind of old-fashioned. Just like Verity itself. Our mum is missing. Nathalie tries to be my mother when she’s gone, but it’s hard, even with Maia, her special friend helping. Nat is very good at telling stories, maybe too good. I keep taking them seriously, seeing all sorts of things because of them, and telling more stories myself, which other people keep telling me aren’t real.

Christopher: This sounds bad, only telling stories shouldn’t be bad. Stories can be wondrous, magical, giving us hope.

Grace: Oh, yes! (She nods eagerly, bouncing in her seat.) They are, only people keep telling me they’re not. Maybe we’re both right. (She cocks her head to the side.) Maybe these stories are good and bad, even at the same time. Still I’m never alone during these stories. (She holds out her bear.) I’ve always got Theodora as a companion. (She settles Theodora on her knee and turns a tiny crank in her back.) Say hello, Theodora.

Theodora: Growrr.

Grace: (She giggles) That’s stuffed bear for “Hello”.

Christopher: Theodora was orginally Ted Edward, wasn’t she?

Grace: (She giggles again.) Our scribbler made her first story a tale within a tale. Only Theodora is still Theodora in it. Our original selves; the first Grace, Princess Nathalie, and Iama the Terrible are all part of a series of books. Our mum along with Maia’s mum wrote and did all the pictures in them.

Christopher: Iama the Terrible?

Grace: (She snickers a third time.) That’s Maia. Move the letters of her name around and you get Iama. Iama is the villain in the books, who captures Princess Nathalie until Grace and Theodora save her.

Christopher: Maia’s mum named her after the villain in her stories?
Grace: Auntie Cassat can be weird. Not that Maia minds. She’s very good at pretending to be Iama the Terrible. It’s only when she’s truly Iama the Terrible she’s not.

Christopher: I guess that’s part of the plot, but let’s return to your Auntie Cassat. Is that the name of Maia’s mum? The same as the Impressionist painter in the scribbler’s world history?

Grace: Yup. Our mum and our last name is Morisotte, like another famous painter. Only the spelling is different. If Lemony Snicket could have children with a name like Baudelaire, why can’t we be Cassat and Morisotte?

Christopher: (He smiles a little.) It sounds like something our scribbler would do. She already has Byron and Shelley in another Work in Progress, On the Other Side of the Mask.

Grace: Hmm? What’s that?

Christopher: Um, you might be a little young for that. Besides we’re talking about your story, remember? It sounds complex.

Grace: It sure is! I’m a child, but I grow up a bit and away. That’s what Theodora calls it when a stuffed animal’s child get older and isn’t around as much. I grow up and away, but I try to come back, bringing Nat and Maia back to. This was all part of the first holiday story.

Christopher: Well, I hope you have fun on your journey expanding your current story during Camp. I learned all sorts of things about myself in April, when part of My Tool, My Treasure was written.

Grace: Really? I hope I do, too! (She bounces in her seat, almost bobbing down in excitment, bouncing a long-suffering Theodora along with her. The things a stuffed animal endures for her child.)

Christopher: Just watch out. What the scribbler wants isn’t always what we want.

Grace: What?

Christopher: Never mind. Good luck!

#RainbowSnippets: A Symposium in Space

Welcome to Rainbow Snippets!

Every Saturday or Sunday, those participating post and share six sentences of LGBTQIA+ fiction on their blogs. It can be their own. It can be someone else’s. It just needs to be LGBTQIA+.

To read a wide variety of samples from LGBTQIA+ stories, go to…

https://www.facebook.com/groups/RainbowSnippets/?ref=group_header

For mine, I’m going to have Phaedra return to her thoughts and Pausania’s angry company in A Symposium in Space…

Men had started a terrible war, decimating a huge portion of the population. In the end, Ancient Earth had survived. Humanity, to use another archaic word, had survived.

Most of those survivors had been colonists who were already creating revolutionary cultures, dependent on the terrain of their individual planets.

Those colonists never forgot Ancient Earth or the lessons they’d learned from her suffering. Men became less and less a part of the new worlds rising in power and prosperity.

 

Like what you’re reading? Want more? Here are buy links…

Nine Star Press: https://ninestarpress.com/product/a-symposium-in-space/

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Symposium-Space-Feast-Words-ebook/dp/B07PGB15FY/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3BPACY58MCCMV&keywords=a+symposium+in+space&qid=1552937461&s=digital-text&sprefix=A+Sympo%2Caps%2C239&sr=1-1

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1130883509?ean=2940161507872

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/a-symposium-in-space

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/928136

Conversations with Christopher: Quartz Frets

Quartz: Why? Why did I even try to talk to that woman? (Quartz strides back and forth through the steaming fog background of the Cauldron.) What was I trying to prove?

Christopher: (He blinks as if waking and becoming aware of his surroundings, including the presence of a character from not only different stories, but a completely different universe.) Hello, Quartz? Shouldn’t you be interviewing someone for Secondary Characters Speak Out right now?

Quartz: I am. At the Formely Forbidden Cauldron right now. Or I’ve already done it and I’m having an after the interview lament on the scribbler’s Facebook Author Page. (He looks up to glower at any readers who might be at this blog, beard bristling.) That’s right. If you want to know what I’m talking about, go inspirationcauldron.blogspot.com. Unless you’re reading the reflection at K.S. Trenten’s Amazon Author Page. If the latter is so, it’s afterwards for you, too.

Christopher: What happened, Quartz? Why are you here?

Quartz: Exactly! Why am I here? Why am I talking to you? It was your villain’s suggestion I do it!

Christopher: My villain?

Quartz: Yes, your villain, antagonist, foil, father figure, lover, cousin, master, whatever! (He balls his hands into fists.) Don’t expect me to make sense of your relationship with him. You can’t even make sense of your relationship with him!

Christopher: That describes a lot of ‘hims’ in my existence.

Quartz: I’m talking about Dyvian. Sometimes he swaggers around, calling himself Once Upon a Time or the Voice of Seraphix, but you know him as Dyvian. You do know him, don’t you?

Christopher: Of course I do.

Quartz: Don’t “of course” me. Memory is a funny thing with you. Anyway I’m trying to talk about me here. Not you!

Christopher: I didn’t-

Quartz: Typical main character, trying to make it all about him. (He grumbles.)

Christopher: You’re becoming a main character yourself, remember?

Quartz: If my story ever gets told. It may not. I’m just a minor, deceased character in a Nine Star Press anthology and Nine Star Press is no longer accepting stories, except those having to do with holidays. I shudder to think what sort of a festive situation I’ll be crammed into with Nimmie Nott. Especially if Oriana decides to join in the fun.

Christopher: I’m getting more and more confused. What happened?

Quartz: I talked to Oriana. Had her a guest on Secondary Characters Speak Out.

Christopher: What?!

Quartz: Don’t look at me like that! It was all Dyvian’s idea. He made me think, well, wonder if maybe it would be better to face Oriana. If I wouldn’t get stronger if I finally did it.

Christopher: And Oriana agreed to meet you? To become a guest on Secondary Characters Speak Out?

Quartz: Not only that. She agreed to just about everything I said.

Christopher: Perhaps she means it. Perhaps she’s sorry for what she did to you and Briar.

Quartz: Hah! It’s more like that she’s up to something.

Christopher: She could be, but that doesn’t mean she isn’t sorry. Her story is over, Quartz.

Quartz: No, it isn’t. It’s never over. Not in the scribbler’s head. Now Oriana is threatening to become part of my story!
Christopher: Well, she might be part of your story. If you relive part of your life with Briar at the cottage, she will turn up.

Quartz: Turn up and ruin our lives. I don’t want to go through that again.

Christopher: I don’t blame you.

Quartz: Only she says she’s going to make things better. She’s going to prove to me she’s changed.

Christopher: Do you believe her?

Quartz: No, of course not! Well, not really. Actually I don’t know. I don’t know what to think. (He tugs at his beard as if he were Garnet.) I’m so confused!

Christopher: Welcome to the ranks of our scribbler’s main characters. (He offers Quartz a weary grin.) We’re usually confused.

Quartz: (He stops in his tracks.) Really.

Christopher: (He nods in comforting certainty.) Really.

Quartz: Thank you. Y’know, for a shadow, you’re not so bad.

Christopher: (He smiles a sweet, yet sinister smile.) Oh, I am, but I appreciate the thought.

Quartz: Right. (He tries not to shudder.)

#RainbowSnippets: A Symposium in Space

Welcome to Rainbow Snippets!

Every Saturday or Sunday, those participating post and share six sentences of LGBTQIA+ fiction on their blogs. It can be their own. It can be someone else’s. It just needs to be LGBTQIA+.

To read a wide variety of samples from LGBTQIA+ stories, go to…

https://www.facebook.com/groups/RainbowSnippets/?ref=group_header

For mine, Pausania will indulge in a sexist rant, picking up where she left off last week in my recent release, A Symposium in Space…

“Men have committed crime after crime, started countless wars, preying upon one another along with us. We should never forget that, especially when we start considering offering them citizenship in the Intergalactic Democracy!”

Ah, so this was what bothered her. The possibility of men being able to vote once more in the Democracy, to have a voice in public assemblies.

Official herstory (intergalactic schools no longer used the word ‘history’, just as they no longer used the word ‘patronizing’) taught young girls that the beginnings of our democracy started with the colonization of other planets. Many of these off-world settlements had been started by women, hoping to create separate cultures apart from the patriarchy we couldn’t seem to shake off back on Ancient Earth.

 

Like what you’re reading? Want more? Here are some buy links…

Nine Star Press: https://ninestarpress.com/product/a-symposium-in-space/

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Symposium-Space-Feast-Words-ebook/dp/B07PGB15FY/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3BPACY58MCCMV&keywords=a+symposium+in+space&qid=1552937461&s=digital-text&sprefix=A+Sympo%2Caps%2C239&sr=1-1

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1130883509?ean=2940161507872

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/a-symposium-in-space

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/928136

(I’m currently reading a biography of Queen Anne of England. I’m struck by a similarity in this scene between Pausania and Sarah Churchill. The intolerant rage burning within both of them, threatening to scorch those who dare to love them…it’s more than a little scary. The scariest thing is I’ve felt this rage myself as well as been on the receiving end of it…)

Me Me Monday: Conversations with Christopher

(Christopher is in the Cauldron, having a conversation with his beloved Damian Ashelocke. It doesn’t matter if he’s really there or not. Christopher misses him enough to talk to him, to imagine the questions he might ask. Or is Damian truly there?)

Damian: I was just thinking about Once Upon a Time and Happily Ever After. Just what are they?

Christopher: The beginning of all stories and the end everyone hopes to get. I’m not sure if anyone outside the Gardens of Arachne considers Once Upon a Time and Happily Ever After to be a whom as well as what.

Damian: Why did we start seeing them as a whom? Where did Once Upon a Time and Happily Ever After first come from?

Christopher: The Shadow Forest, perhaps? Its mists do creep into our former gardens. This was why Stefan Ashelocke called his realm ‘Mystere’.

Damian: Yes, but the Shadow Forest is composed of dreams, stray thoughts, imaginary creatures and places. Didn’t someone have to fantasize about Once Upon a Time and Happily Ever After in order for the two of them to become Arachnian legends? Or were they once real people?

Christopher: Just what is ‘real’? I’ve had dreams, visions of storytellers and legend crafters, gathering together around a legendary fountain to compete against each other in their art. The victor would become Once Upon a Time, ultimate crafter of story. He’d control the fountain and all the other fountains of creation itself.

Damian: He?

Christopher: Or she. Or they. It doesn’t matter who or what you were. To become Once Upon a Time, you just need the art and mastery to spawn legends.

Damian: This sounds a bit like being a deity or becoming one.

Christopher: It may have been. Only you could have very humble beginnings and still become Once Upon a Time. Like I said, it was less about who you were and more about what you can do.

Damian: And Happily Ever After?

Christopher: He was the prize all the participants in legends strove to carry off or obtain for themselves.

Damian: He?

Christopher: Or she. Or they. It depends of the desires of those involved in the legend, the form Happily Ever After takes. (He looks away from Damian, his cheeks coloring.) I’ve always seen Happily Ever After as a he. A particular he.

Damian: (His own cheeks colour as well.) Always?

Christopher: Always.

Damian: Your Happily Ever After could disappoint you. He might be not turn out to be what you expected.

Christopher: That’s the problem with being Happily Ever After, any form of Happily Ever After. (He smiles sadly.) It’s impossible to live up to others’ expectations of you.

Damian: One would think being Happily Ever After would grant some sort of powers to live up to such expectations. Something to help him fulfil his role.

Christopher: You would think so, wouldn’t you? Such powers mean nothing if Happily Ever After can’t use them. Or if he misuses them.

Damian: Does Happily Ever After misuse his powers?

Christopher: All too often.

Damian: How does he stop? Or learn to use those powers more wisely?

Christopher: That’s a riddle I’m still struggling to figure out.

#RainbowSnippets: A Symposium in Space

Welcome to Rainbow Snippets!

Every Saturday or Sunday those participating post and share six sentences of LGBTQIA+ fiction on their blogs. It can be their own. It can be someone else’s. It just needs to be LGBTQIA+.

To read a wide variety of samples from LGBTQIA+ stories, go to…

https://www.facebook.com/groups/RainbowSnippets/?ref=group_header

For my own, I’m going to pick up where I left off last week in A Symposium in Space. This is a little longer than it should be, but I left off too soon last week, clipping the scene too short, so it didn’t really make sense. I didn’t want to do the same thing this week…

 

Sure enough, red liquid spilled out of it. “Thinking her wealth and power are enough to lure you to one of her dull dinner parties, let alone me!”

“You just used the word ‘woman’,” I ventured. “Didn’t you just chastise me for saying that?”

“Of course I chastised you.” Pausania ran a hand through her hair in a self-conscious gesture. “We’re trying to get away from a past dominated by men in the name we use for ourselves.”

“Why use it?” I asked. “If you feel the word is wrong, why do you keep using it?”

“Because I can’t forget it!” Pausania slammed the glass into the wall, heedless of the broken shards. They sliced her hand causing crimson wounds to bloom all over her smooth skin.

 

Like what you’ve read? Want to read more? Here are some buy links…

Nine Star Press: https://ninestarpress.com/product/a-symposium-in-space/

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Symposium-Space-Feast-Words-ebook/dp/B07PGB15FY/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3BPACY58MCCMV&keywords=a+symposium+in+space&qid=1552937461&s=digital-text&sprefix=A+Sympo%2Caps%2C239&sr=1-1

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1130883509?ean=2940161507872

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/a-symposium-in-space

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/928136