This is a very rough first typed draft of "The Writer and The Witch". It will contain many grammar flaws and wordings that are going to seem like "What in the hell was he thinking?!" But, my writing style is to first write with my heart, then edit later with my mind. But, I felt the need to share the beginning of my process. I believe the first chapter is important for setting the mood. It is a half pants/half organized thing. Chapter 1 is pantsed, then I develop a plan from there...sometimes.
The Writer and The Witch
Ksenia stood at the crossroads of her career and two old dirt roads. Behind her stood an old bar that appeared to have long since lived past its glory days. She sighed and looked to her clinched hand that held a pen and a feather. That is what she was told to bring, so that is what she brought. Ksenia walked to the middle of the crossroads, scooped a small hole into the dirt and gravel, then placed the pen and the feather within. "This is so silly", she mocked herself, as she covered over the items, "I must be crazy to believe in this sort of stuff. I might as well get something to drink, since my thirst is real."
She clapped the dirt from her hands as she walked to old bar. The paint that remained was faded and curled, ready to join its fellow paint chips on the ground with the next stiff wind. The OPEN light in the window flickered as she opened the door. Inside, the dim lights hid the sight of the years of dust that had been allowed to collect. Ksenia brushed off a bar stool and sat down. "What can I get you to drink, miss?" a voice from the other end of the bar asked. The barkeep walked toward Ksenia as he cleaned out a glass. Ksenia grinned slightly, "Do you sell liquid redemption?" The barkeep chuckled, "I sold the last bottle last week, waiting for a new shipment to arrive. How about a whiskey, instead?" Ksenia nodded, "That should work well enough." The barkeep dusted off an old bottle of whiskey, "20 years old, perfect age", and poured a few fingers into Ksenia's glass.
A young woman sat down next to Ksenia at the bar, "Is this seat taken?" Ksenia looked around the empty bar, then to the woman, "I suppose, but I may not be much for good company at the moment." The young woman smiled, "I am here to fix that." Ksenia smirked, "Oh? And how are you going to do that?" The young woman cocked her sideways, "Um, you called ME. You asked ME to be here", and sat a small feather down on the bar. Ksenia's eyes widened, "You...", but could not finish her sentence. The young woman smiled, "My name is Abigail. And, no one ever expects me to look like this. What exactly did you think would happen? Were you expecting wings? Scales? A visage of such horror such as would drive people crazy? I can, if that is what you prefer, but it won't be of much help."
Ksenia finished off her whiskey in one gulp.
Abigail continued talking, "So here is how this works. You clarify for me what you want exactly, we come to an agreement, shake hands, and the deal will be done."
Ksenia wiped her mouth and asked the barkeep for a refill, then drank it down straight in one shot. The barkeep raised an eye brow, but said nothing as he went back to cleaning glasses.
Ksenia took a deep breather and mustered the strength to speak, "Fine, I will play along. I want to be famous. I want people to not be able to put my books down. When they read my words, their minds won't be able to think of anything else."
Abigail thought for a moment, "Deal", then extended her hand to Ksenia.
"Is this really worth my soul?", Ksenia asked as she extended her hand to Abigail.
As their hands touched, Ksenia could feel a brief burning pain in her hand and she winced.
Abigail smiled, "You will soon learn that for yourself", then stood up from the stool.
Ksenia asked, "When will I know my request has begun happening?"
"It takes a few days for the effect to begin, but after that, you will get exactly what you have asked for," replied Abigail, as she smiled.
Ksenia turned to the barkeep, "Why didn't you offer Abigail something to drink?"
The barkeep raised an eyebrow, "Who? Miss, you are the only one in here."
Ksenia turned to look at Abigail, but she was not there, then she looked back to the barkeep, "But, I was just talking to her! Didn't you see, a young woman, very pretty..."
The barkeep interrupted her, "Miss, you are the only person in here other than me. You have been sitting there alone the whole time talking to yourself. I wasn't going to say anything, it is none of my business."
Ksenia looked confused, "I was really talking to someone!"
The barkeep smiled, "Yes, ma'am. Maybe you've had too much to drink?"
Ksenia threw a $20 bill onto the bar, "Keep the change!" and ran out the door. She ran over the intersection of the crossroads and looked for the pen and feather she had just placed there, but could not find them. She dropped to her knees and looked up the clouds in the sky, "What have I done?"