National Terrible Unfinished Novel-Writing Month: Day 28

The Gift sometimes falters, but suffice to say that today I have four stripper poles here in the office and I’ve got a different muse on each one.

(Oh…and none of them are dudes.)

I truly pity those of you who aren’t participating in NaTeUnNoWiMo. You just can’t understand what The Process is like. Yes, it’s tough to slog through those dry spells, but in the end, my God-given gifts and unshakable discipline will get me through.

My story is set in a French trading colony in Quebec during the time of the Haight Mundation. The French outpost enforces discipline and order on a region in which civilization has won a perilous toehold against lawlessness and the wilderness. General Renaud, the military governor, initially resented spending the tail end of his storied career in this backwater colony but quickly came to appreciate the many benefits of wielding nigh-godlike power of life and death over 1723 men, women and children.

His one mistake was bringing his young daughter, Lilene with him. A bit of a hellion, she arrived in the New World only weeks ahead of a growing scandal she created in her mother country. Lilene quickly began to make friends with the various French, Dutch, and native factions; her father begins to become concerned that his daughter has her ear closer to the ground than he himself has…and when a Spanish prisoner under heavy guard manages to escape, the General begins to wonder if Lilene is an asset to his mission or his biggest liability.

Trappers feud with farmers. Both groups spar with the officers of the holding company that paid to establish the colony in the first place. The natives known to the colonists as “Buearicouts” grow increasingly impatient about treaties signed and quickly broken.

Meanwhile, word continues to filter from the British Colonies of increasing unrest between the American colonists; who among Renaud’s charges are loyal to France, who are secretly pursuing alliances and resources to support the British Crown, and who are secretly Revolutionary spies, intent only on setting one against the other?

And who’s the dashing young rake who stumbles from the West forest early one evening?  His clothes suggest he could be a local, or a recent arrival from Portugal, or from a land unfamiliar; he totes a chest made from a strange material with the properties of both metal and play. He is mocked for walking around with strings dangling from his ears, and with the strings in place he appears to be responding to sounds not of this time and place.

And what if his even stranger companion? Standing close to seven feet tall, dressed entirely in black, wearing a tall cylindrical hat resembling nothing as much as a black chimney…answering to the name “Abraham,” of all things!

The village idiot scares the community with tales of metal birds seen hovering in the sky; and windows through which one can view scenes from thousands of miles away; beverages sipped from metal tubes that provoke sensations of euphoria and empowerment; odd fellows whose sole question upon arrival is the day and the year!

Are these strangers here to aid the colonists…or to hasten their doom? And what of the birthmark recently-discovered on the parson’s left temple, discovered at the same time a brand-new chapter of the New Testament silently appears in everyone’s Bibles, as though this “Book of Dylan” had always been there to begin with?

Oh, what a mysterious and fabulous world I have created; I feel that I am cheating its residents and my future readers with every moment that I am not writing my NaTeUnNoWriMo novel. If only I could rip out that section of my brain that’s already familiar with this world so that I could actually experience this novel the way my readers one day shall.