It’s Monday…How about a book excerpt?

Hey people,

It’s Monday again.  To start the week off right I have a book excerpt for you. Don’t worry. It’s not inspirational or campy or a bunch of crap.

Before I show the excerpt, however, I’d like to give some context. A few days ago I received an e-mail from an author in response to a post I wrote: Flashback: Letters on LD 2. The post gave an example of how the repetition of images can be used to show confusion in a character. In her e-mail the author asked, “So what emotions can repetition be used to show?” And my answer to that is simple: any emotion as long as emotional weight is given to the repeated image. Some images are already loaded with emotion. These are sometimes referred to as cultural symbols. Objects such as prison bars, hearts, doors,  and horizons come pre-packaged with collectively prescribed emotions. Other objects require a some symbolic development by the author. Our culture hasn’t assigned any particular symbolic or emotional significance to extension cords or garage door openers. But, believe it or not, an author could develop these into emotional or symbolic images if he or she wished to. Anyway, in the following excerpt from The Church Peak Hotel: Revisited, I used the repetition of images to show a characters growing insanity, fear, moral deprivation, need for submission from his wife. Look for when the character mentions tits, food, and water. Hope you enjoy it! Happy Monday! (Oh, and one last thing. I know that character is sexist. In context with the rest of the book, his actions are NOT condoned.

 

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from: The Church Peak Hotel: Revisited

For the rest of that night, I sat by the door. I didn’t eat. I didn’t drink. I sat with my knife in my hand, ready. After a while Mayra got up. She wasn’t crying anymore. She seemed like her bitchy self. Whenever I looked over at her, she had a stupid, angry look on her face. She wanted me to see that look. She wanted me to see it.

Morning must have come, but no light came through the solid black of the steel shutter. Every now and then, I looked through the peep-hole. It was black out there now. The flickering light was gone. Maybe he was sitting out there. Maybe he wasn’t. There was no way to tell.

“You can’t sit there all day,” Mayra said. Her arms were folded tightly across her little tits. “Do you want some water?”

I told her that I did. She was looking relatively less bitchy, but I still answered like a smart-ass.

“Well, fuck you,” she said. “Get your own fucking water.”

After that she paced around the room with her folded arms tight against her tiny tits. What a fuckin’ bitch. That’s all I could think. I kept thinking, She’s a bitch; she’s a bitch; she’s a bitch. I couldn’t think about the boy who trapped us in there. I couldn’t think about how it was I who brought us here. It was I who wanted the story. It was I who was responsible for everything. All I could think about was how much of a bitch she was being.

I didn’t try to apologize or make it up to her. I just let her pace the room. I got up with my knife in my hand. I walked towards my backpack. I pulled out the water bottle. I took a drink.

 

For the rest of the day, I sat in a chair next to the door. I listened. I listened closely for the sound of feet walking down the hallway. All day I sat there. All day I heard nothing.

Mayra made herself useful. She brought me food every so often. At one point she fell asleep. That was around noon. I remember because I made a point to check my watch. In the afternoon she tried to talk to me. It was that nervous type of chatter that some women can’t help but do. I told her to keep her mouth shut, and she did.

 

Evening came, and I was exhausted. Mayra brought me food. I ate, and my eyes started getting heavy.

I woke up to that feeling of falling. The room was dark. “What the fuck – Mayra, what the fuck!”

“I turned it off so you could sleep.” She said that and then the dim light from her lantern filled the room.

“You let me sleep.” I said. “You let me sleep! You let me fuckin’ sleep!” I screamed and screamed. I don’t even remember the words I called her. I walked across the room. My knife was in my hand. I held her by the throat. I remember holding her and seeing that fear in her eyes. She would have let me do it. She would’ve…

(The subject stopped speaking abruptly. He had been sitting straight up. But when he stopped speaking, he slouched forward. A distant look came to his eyes. He sat like that for several minutes)

Mr. Jeffries.

(The subject appeared surprised to see us)

Mr. Jeffries. Continue, please.

Right. Right.

You were speaking about holding a knife up to your wife.

Right. I did do that. Right. I had forgotten. But. I wasn’t going to tell you that. But I did. I guess it’s alright. I feel like I know you. I do. I know you.

Yes, it does feel that way. Could you continue, please?

Right. Well, I didn’t kill her. She was afraid, and that was enough. Sometimes you just have to scare someone into doing what you want them to do. That’s really what the world is all about. Think about it. That’s what the world has always been about. It’s not about killing. That’s counterproductive. It’s fear. It’s fear that gets you what you want.

Right, so, after that she didn’t let me fall asleep. I stayed by the door. I was there to protect us. I stayed by the door and she brought me water and food. There was a madman out there, an enemy, and it was my job to protect us from him. It wasn’t asking too much when Mayra brought over a water bottle or a meal bar. No, it was fair.

And at some point it was night. If not for our watches, we couldn’t have known. It was always the same color in that room. There were the same shadows on the walls, the same shadow underneath the bed, the same shadow cast from Mayra’s nervous body. Her arms weren’t folded across her little tits anymore. She wasn’t calm, but at least she knew well enough to keep from annoying me. There was no point in her showing me her anger anymore. There was just no point, so she kept her arms to her sides and no expression on her face.

It was a shame really. I liked the way her tits looked with her arms folded across.

 

And that’s it. Repeating images. Please feel free to comment below. Love to hear from you!

Author’s: If you have an excerpt that you would like me to share next week send me an e-mail: ejamesolson1@gmail.com. Hope to hear from you.

Oh, and one other thing. All four novels in the series are still on sale. They are priced between 2.99 and 3.99.  Check out these links if you’re interested:

 

But_the_Angels_Never_Cover_for_Kindle

 

Farmers_and__Canniba_Cover_for_Kindle

 

 

Just_After_the_Fall_Cover_for_Kindle

 

 

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THANKS!!!!!!!!

 

About Eric James-Olson

Eric James-Olson writes novels and short stories. Currently, he's working on a coming-of-age novel set in the Panhandle of West-Virginia. Check out the "Novels by Eric James-Olson" tab above for the titles of his other books. In addition to writing, James-Olson is a high school English teacher, an amateur woodworker, and an outdoor enthusiast. He lives with his wife and daughter in West Virginia. View all posts by Eric James-Olson

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