Taking a Dip – WIPpet Wednesday

What do you call a writer who hasn’t been writing? I wish this was a joke with a great punchline, but sadly it’s been a miserable reality of late. My highly anticipated writing weekend fell through, and a new volunteer job has been more of a time-suck than I anticipated. So I’m doing a big push this week to clear the decks so I have a whole day (read school day) to write. I think it’s a worthy goal, as I figure I need a decent stretch of time to find my way back into the story. Wish me luck!

Anyway the past few WIPpets have been a bit heavy, so I’ve been looking for something lighter this week. In this WIPpet Megan and Roan are talking about Matthew – one of my all time favourite characters. Matthew is a travelling preacher, who has been a father figure to Megan. Roan has recently arrived in the Hamlet and has already had some interesting encounters with Matthew.  He likes him, but can’t reconcile him with any of the religious folk he’s come across before. Megan is doing her best to shed some light on him. So for your reading pleasure I give you 20 sentences (12+3+1+4) from The Legend of the Kings (Book 3):

Megan laughed.  “Oh you must get him to tell you about his time at the Sanctuary. He has such a love for God – you’ve seen it, and a gift for interpreting the scrolls, so they couldn’t fault him there. But I think he was a trial to them. One day he went swimming in the lake in the Sanctuary garden, “as God intended”. That’s how he described it – can you imagine? He said it was hot, and he’d been working hard, and when he spotted the lake he figured God would totally approve of a fellow cooling off.  So in he went.”

“But while he was splashing about, his clothes lying on the bank, the Overseer arrived with a group of old ladies, and they decided to stop and picnic right next to where Matthew had left his clothes. So he gets low in the water, and tries to hide in the rushes, when Tobias trips on one of his boots. Tobias looks around and spots the clothes, and clearly not wanting to alert the old dears, strolls over to the water’s edge.

“Matthew is in the water trying to get his attention, and not wanting to be too obvious, when Tobias looks directly at him and holds his gaze. There was no mistaking he’d seen Matthew, but his face doesn’t register anything. He turns back to the ladies and they proceed to enjoy a long drawn out picnic in the sun.

“In the end Matthew started turning blue and his skin wrinkled up so badly he thought he was going to turn into an old duck himself. So he strolls straight out of the lake, casual as you like, picks up his clothing, doffs his hat at the ladies and makes off into the garden as though it was the most ordinary thing in the world.”

Roan was trying not to laugh.  It was just the kind of thing he could picture Matthew doing.

“What happened?”

“Oh – that evening Tobias called Matthew into his office for a chat.  He didn’t mention the incident at all, but asked Matthew if he’d consider being a travelling preacher and teaching those in the remoter parts of Gaelladorn. And that’s what he did.”

Many thanks again to the lovely host of WIPpet Wednesdays, the very talented K.L. Schwengel. I’ll be sharing a sneak peek at the cover of Kathi’s new book Emergence later on this week on the blog! If you’d like to join us, or see what the other WIPpeteers are working on head over to this linky. Have a great week.

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31 thoughts on “Taking a Dip – WIPpet Wednesday

  1. That is hilarious! And so well-written. I’m cracking up…which is a good thing to do right before I head off to the brain suck that is my day-job. Thanks for the morning giggle. 🙂

  2. LOL! That’s so funny. 🙂 Here Tobias is trying to punish Matthew for being naked in the lake, but Matthew ultimately decides to risk shocking the ladies anyway. Reminds me of the time my BFF (not Alana), Beloved, and I took BFF’s 6 yo sister, and two autistic adults (one of which could barely control certain urges) wandering through caves along Malibu beach. We accidentally stumbled onto a nude beach. BFF, Beloved, and I started pointing out all sorts of nonexistent things in the water while we ushered the others back through the caves.

  3. I’m betting that several of those old dears would have just laughed the whole thing off. And it’d be interesting to find out how Matthew “got even” with Tobias for the extra long bath.

    As for not writing… I feel your pain…all too well.

      1. Ah… there’s the confusion. I thought that Tobias was actually trying to “get” Matthew by forcing the choice of hiding or baring all. Just because Matthew eventually took both choices doesn’t mean Tobias was embarrassed by it…

        Hmm, interesting perception.

  4. I’m glad I’m not the only one facing the writer who isn’t writing conundrum at the moment. Loved the snippet though, the picture it created was vivid and alive and it also managed to tie in some worldbuilding in a subtle way. 🙂

  5. That was perfect! I think I love Matthew.

    I’m sorry you’re having a hard time with the writing. I can’t offer any advice, only understanding and a wish that things get better soon.

    1. Oh yay – I love Matthew too. I’m trying to write him into the earlier books at the moment but I’m having generational issues. Originally there was going to be hundreds of years between the books, but now I’m trying to close the gap. Tobias now bridges all three, so I’m figuring Matthew has to make an appearance somewhere!

  6. I’m still giggling at Tobias courteously asking if Matthew would consider being a traveling preacher! Oh, my! Way to wash your hands of him, Tobias, or to try to…

    And what a way to liven up the picnic! =)

    1. Thanks Shan. Yes, good old Tobias – selling the remoter parts of Gaelladorn. Funnily enough it was the best thing for Matthew. He never could have conformed to the more cloistered life at the Sanctuary… And I bet those old ladies dined out on stories of that picnic afterwards!

  7. That’s a really great story. Part of me wonders if Tobias didn’t help Matthew as a test to see if he’d be fit for traveling. Though, I’m betting it was more along the lines of getting rid of him.

    Wishing you the best that getting a writing day works out.

    1. The only test Tobias had was Matthew himself… he thought he was teaching Matthew a lesson – he didn’t bank on him strolling out. Thanks for your best wishes – aiming for Tuesday and somehting new for the next WIPpet!

  8. Oh, I love this, I was giggling out loud! It really reads like a story that’s been recounted, or at least thought about, many times, but is still just as funny as always. Love the image of Matthew eventually just strolling out and past them all.

  9. I loved this snippet too! Matthew sounds like quite the character!

    Good luck with freeing up some time to write! I’m working on that myself, since this new project at work is sucking up my free time.

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