My writing partner, Renée Jacobson, tagged me with this snazzy (code word for shriek-inducing crazy) “meme” (code word for writing stunt?) called Lucky 7. Like most things that get passed around, Lucky 7
has its own set of rules. Here’s what you are supposed to do:
Open your WIP (work in progress) and:
1. Go to page 77.
2. Go to line 7 on that page.
3. Copy the next 7 lines, sentences, or paragraphs as they are written.
4. Tag 7 authors who are also have Works in Progress.
Without further ado, the following excerpt from Ripple, © April 29, 2012 E. L. Farris goes like this . . .
Helen thought back to the day she lost the baby. Blood covered the bathroom floor and she knew she was hemorrhaging and needed to get help. She crawled to the bedroom and grabbed the phone and called Richard’s office and no one answered. She called his cell and it went straight to voicemail. By this time, tears flooded her vision and mixed with the pool of blood forming beneath her and it took all of her fading strength to dial 911. She knew she had to crawl downstairs to open the door or else the paramedics would be delayed by precious minutes waiting for the firemen to arrive and take an axe to the front door. She slid down the stairs and got a finger on the lock and hit it and kept staring at the lock as the 911 operator yelled at her to, “Stay awake, honey,” while she waited for the ambulance to arrive.
Richard had shown up to the hospital a few hours later, all chastened and apologetic and barely sober and Helen never asked him what he’d been using. She just asked him to leave and he had left. He went home and took care of all the blood and paid for the carpets to be torn up and replaced and it was all done before Helen returned home three days later. And they never spoke of it again. Helen didn’t know why.
The only thing Helen detested more than funeral was blood. Even so, the janitorial efficiency of Richard’s cleanup got under her skin. It felt that with each ounce of blood and gore that vanished, so too did her last chance to bear a baby boy. She never got a chance to say goodbye, or even touch her unborn son. She didn’t try to explain any of this to Richard. He had long since stopped listening. Instead of trying to talk to him, Helen had immersed herself in her work.
She leaned over the counter and grabbed the metal-colored telephone that matched the kitchen appliances. Fucking decorators. Her first priority was to make sure Phoebe was accounted for, since there was no telling if Richard was up to taking care of anyone last night. She needed to ask without it sounding obvious that she didn’t know where her daughter was or if her daughter had made it to school in the morning. 7:45. Homeroom was at 7:35. OK, this is like direct examining a hostile witness: ask the questions without them knowing I am asking. She dialed the front office for McClintock and waited for a secretary to come on the line.
“McClintock Upper School. How may I help you?”
Helen willed her voice to sound its most polished. “Good morning Karen. This is Mrs. Thompson, Phoebe’s mom. I just got in from the redeye from California and realized that Phoebe may have left her science textbook home. I wanted to leave a message for her just in case—also to let her know that I’m home and can drop by school with it if she needs me.”
Karen switched into efficient secretary mode. “Sure thing, Mrs. Thompson.” Helen heard papers rustling. “Looking at her schedule, it appears that she is in math right now. I’ll send a student down to class to let her know that you are home and can bring her book in if she needs it.”
Helen smiled into the phone. “Thank you so much Karen.” Helen waited for Karen to say goodbye before she dropped the phone back into its receiver.
Now she needed to figure out what to do and how to deal with Richard. She needed a clear mind, so she grabbed the teapot and filled it with water. She poured French Roast coffee beans in the coffee grinder and breathed in the invigorating aroma of fresh-ground coffee. Then she poured the grounds into the French Press and, sorting through hazy thoughts as she leaned sleepily against the counter, she waited for the teapot to whistle. It didn’t make sense to get Richard on the line when she was angry and tired. There really wasn’t anything left to discuss anyway, and he’d be entering the courtroom in his bullshit black robes any minute and wouldn’t want to –or even be able to – take any calls. He doesn’t want to talk to me anyway. He’s got someone else; he’s always had someone else, and the sooner I realize he will never change, the sooner I will be able to move on and start a life without him.
Here are the seven writers I hereby tag: