The first short story in On Stranger Winds is a wintery tale, titled The Herbivorous Witch. In describing a general mood - I am reminded of the this passage from Wikipedia concerning the Grimms' Fairy Tales: "first volumes were much criticized because, although they were called Children's Tales, they were not regarded as suitable for children, both for the scholarly information included and the subject matter."
The Herbivorous Witch is not quite fairy tale, yet perhaps disarming with the seeming innocent telling of such genres. It's like the awesome surprise of a snow-day vacation, yet lurking with the danger of frostbite. I tried to recreate the feeling of those hazy days from youth, when evenings were filled with the fascination of heavy snowfalls, and the following day exhausting with snowmen construction; it's about the popping sounds the heating coils make as you thaw yourself safe and cozy by the heater, hot chocolate in your hands. Funny though how small irritants mar bliss. Especially when reality clashes with a human's inability to understand magical realms. And at that I can say no more... I will leave that to anyone who wishes to discuss further within blog comments...
I can say that the story was born from a curious writing process I created for myself while in Seattle during 2007. Given lack of much disposable income, (well remembered for numerous lunches on boiled eggs and vitamins), I began writing to boost my morale. I would scribble, upon waking or just before bed, a deliberate batch of nonsense. The goal was to avoid any seriousness in content. So the lines began as such... "A lost collection of fruit bats gathered on my skin"... or "there is a leaky ghost on my ceiling"... or "the herbivorous witch lives in the woods"..., (and if your interest is piqued, you can actually find the original verse in an undisclosed entry here on the Bindlegrim blog).
Around this time, various stories were started, and halted, and Jitter (the 2nd story in the book) was mostly completed while residing in the northwest, Seattle. It wasn't until moving to Denver, where I experienced regular snowstorms once again, that the poems coincidentally founds themselves at hand. I was posting past poems to the blog, and wondered if I couldn't turn one into a short story, to be included in what was percolating into a book of shorts. Likely inspired by our cottage habitat bordered by a small bit of woods, The Herbivorous Witch was a natural favorite. Between the poem and the setting, I found the story practically wrote itself.
Ichabod's Cottage, Colorado where The Herbivorous Witch was written.
Do you have any great techniques for writing? This seemed a great method, whereas I have found some tales cumbersome to the telling, while other simply refuse and opt to be left alone in their own forgotten folder on a laptop.
After all of this babble and scribble, I would love to hear what YOU thought of the story, or some aspect of it. Or even just your thoughts on writing techniques. Thank you for listening, sharing, and a big thank you to those who have taken time to explore this or other stories in the book.
Bindlegrim books in need of a new home. PS - Cover art is by David Irvine
*** GIVEAWAY DETAILS ***
1) Leave a blog comment here about witches, about writing, stories you like, or better yet about The Herbivorous Witch.
2) For each next six blog entries, I will draw randomly at the end of that week to give someone who commented a signed printed copy of Tall Tales Shorter Days.
3) At the end of the six blog entries I will draw from all comments (more comments, more chances to win) for one Bindlegrim lantern - The Horrid Decor (Orange on Ghost Skin).
Note - Bindlegrim encourages and hopes, but does not require, that readers might leave a Like or a Review on the Amazon pages for the book: print or e-book.
*** GIVEAWAY DETAILS ***
*** And this weeks book winner! ***
Good evening! And congratulations to tonight's winner of a printed copy of On Stranger Winds: Tall Tales for Shorter Days! (See updated post). A screen shot of each comment was folded to the same size, shaken, and the first one to fall back out of the Trick or Treat canister declared the winner! All entries will be entered in the final drawing for the lantern (shown above), a few weeks from now. Thank you all again!
*** This weeks book winner! ***