Sunday, July 14, 2013

Cut Scene Sunday



There's this scene that I recently cut from my WIP. I really like it, but there's an element in it that's too similar to a really important scene that comes directly after it. So, it was cuts-ville.

But b/c I like this scene so much(not really sure why, there's no completely mind-boggling happenage in it... *shrugs*) it makes me sad to think it's going to be labeled as 'not for use', and stuck away in a folder somewhere.

I would like for it to see the light of day, so I'm going to post it here. I hope you enjoy it(as much as is possible when you're plopped into a story w/no idea of what's going on), though please keep in mind this scene is from a story that's in the rough-stormy-seas-stage of the first draft.

* * * *
I stand, tray in hand. Weave my way through the tables to the line of trashcans. Overhead, sculptures of fantastic creatures made from twisted wires and small disks of color stretch their wings. I dump my empty milk carton and a few pieces of fruit into the trash.
 
"What's that from?" Layne asks.
 
A crescent shape scar mars the inside of my forearm. I bite my cheek to keep the heat of unexpected tears at the back of my eyes, out of sight, where they belong. It doesn't take much these days for the sudden longing for home to overwhelm me.
 
"A cow stepped on it when I was little," I say, joining the line to drop off my dirty tray.
 
"A cow?" Layne snorts. "Really? That's so--"
 
"Country fresh farm girl?" I say sarcastically.
 
Only Moirah still trots out the full title from time to time.
 
"No." Layne scratches at the back of his neck. "I was going to say random. 'Cuz that's definitely not what I thought was going to come out of your mouth."
 
I have to smile at this. But then it falters as I step up to the washing station and catch sight of him-- Lo, half obscured by a rack of pans, working busily at a side counter piled high with dough. The washer woman tries to take my tray from me, but it's stuck rigid in my hand as I stare fixedly at my cousin. She takes a peek behind her, then quickly flaps a sudsy hand at her helper.
 
"It's her," she mutters. "Get him outta here."
 
The helper flashes a panicked look at me and cutting about, heads toward Lo. And suddenly I'm unfrozen. My tray clatters against the stainless steel counter as I vault onto the smooth surface and start to slide across until--
 
An arm around my waist yanks me back. I twist in the tight grip. But it isn't Layne, like I'd expected, but Darcy. I react like a mad cat, a low hiss of air coming from between my teeth as I struggle against his chest, trying to break free. When that doesn't work I jam a hand beneath his jaw and push up against the hardness of bone and stubble.
 
"Stop it," he grits through his teeth. "The rule is you don't see each other. Do you want to break that? Think of what she might do in retaliation."
 
An image flashes to the forefront of my mind-- Lo, on the floor, holding his bleeding feet. It was the last time I'd seen him, the last time Moirah had punished him because of me. I let Darcy go. Along his jawline is a series of marks from my nails. They're red like the anger that's rising up in me, the bubbles that warn of the boil to come.
 
Snow. A blizzard falling, blanketing the countryside. Cold, cold, cold.

 The anger retreats, though it's still there, simmering, waiting for it's chance.
 
I turn slowly about, out of Darcy's arms. Lo's gone, the dough sitting forlornly on the counter, a lumpy mountain swirled about with flour.
 
Like snow.
 
Cold, cold, cold, I remind myself, pushing back at the heat beneath my skin.
 
The washer woman takes my tray and sends a jet of water over it. Eggs bits and toast crumbs fly off in the spray.
 
"He was supposed to be in the back. Someone put him at the wrong station. Go on now, Tam," she says, not unkindly.
 
I hesitate, staring at her. She knows me. Has Lo talked to her about me? Shame rushes through my veins. I've not talked to anyone about him-- except for Max, in my early days on the hospital floor.
 
I leave the cafeteria and go straight to the arena, even though it isn't open yet.
 
Sit down in a dark corner, with my head on my knees and try and think cool thoughts.
* * * *
 
 And now I feel better. Even w/this scene being cut, it still had its moment to shine(with as much weak light as a first draft can muster anyway). And if you held out through the entire scene, thanks! Tam & Co. appreciate it. =)

26 comments:

  1. It's a lovely scene. Kudos on being brave enough to cut the things that need to go:)

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    1. Thanks! I like being called brave, lol! =)

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  2. I sometimes find that when I can't use a scene I love, I later find places for pieces of the scene to enrich other parts of the book.

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    1. Very true, & that could happen here...

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  3. Instead of painfully aborting this scene, you put it up for adoption, and now it will live happily in your archives and the memories of all its adoptive parents.

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  4. The first thing that occurred to me when I opened to your post is how much I am attached to divided plates/trays. Why? :)
    The second, once reading your deleted scene, is that it is well written and evocative. But I have no doubt that if you felt it's superfluous even at this stage (I have never had this experience while first-drafting... only later)it must be so.

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    1. Maybe it takes you back to your school days? When I was a kid I liked using them b/c it kept everything firmly in its place. I DID not like my food to touch. Now I mix lots of things when eating. =)

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  5. I really enjoyed this scene, but good for you for realizing it had to go. Perhaps bits of it will find unexpected homes in a future stories.

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  6. Wow! This scene makes me want to read the rest, even though I have no idea where it came from! LOL. For what age and what genre is your WIP? I'm nosey (I mean, curious!) :-)

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    1. Thanks! It's YA, and my first dabble into the dystopian genre. And I, too, am of the curious sort- it's a writerly instinct! ;)

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  7. Great idea to share a deleted scene. :)

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    1. You should do it, too! Oh, forget hinting- I'd love to see one of your deleted scenes! =)

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  8. I usually don't like to read fiction on blogs, but this was good. Really good! Despite the fact the names confused me and I didn't really know what was happening, the prose was intense, and by the time she jumped the counter I was totally sucked in. Now I was to know the whole story about Lo and Moriah. Very well done. :-)

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  9. That was an intriguing scene. And a great idea to share it on your blog instead of just filing it away in that folder.

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    1. Thanks! I was a little nervous about sharing, but figured hey, what's a blog for if not putting it all out there? =)

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  10. This is very interesting. It definitely makes me want to know more about your story.

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  11. This is wonderful, Leandra! It is such an *urgent* scene, and now I want to read more and know what is going on in the story. You use such vivid imagery, even down to the artwork hanging from the ceiling and the red marks Tam's nails leave on Darcy's face. Thanks so much for sharing this!

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    1. Thank you!!! And this is silly, but it was so cool seeing Tam and Darcy's names in your comment. =)

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  12. What a great use of a cut scene...and how fun! I know what you mean, sometimes it's hard to cut your darlings, but you've got to be tough for the good of the story!

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    1. It is hard...but I have got to use some of this cut scene elsewhere like was suggested, so yay for that at least! =)

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  13. Awesome scene - I love it and I'm totally and completely hooked! If you're like me, you may be able to cannibalize parts from it. hee hee I do that sometimes. :)

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    1. Yes, I did! I 'ate' quite a few parts from it actually. =D

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