ReGi McClain, if no one else, will be pleased to hear that I’ve been working on my outline for Operation: Sugarplum again, finally. In light of having read the full original text of The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, however, a lot of what I had already written is going to change. Max and Clara now know each other when the story starts. In fact, they are a couple. I’ve figured out the history between Max and Lauren Pirlipat, and kind of inadvertently ended up with a love triangle, but as much as I hate love triangles, I think it’s the best way to go at the moment. It’s not really a love triangle, anyway, as any romantic relationship between Max and Lauren is well and truly over, but as you’ll see from the excerpt below, it’s kinda left Max a bit messed up.
The changes do mean that I probably won’t have the cool bits where plot is revealed through characters texting each other or posting in forums; it’s just not going to work with the characters knowing each other outside of the Internet. Max and Clara only knew each other online at the start of the first version, but having them know each other in person from the start makes it quite different. I’m also probably going to want to change the title, mostly so that the word “Sugarplum” isn’t in it and I can use it for a character based on the Sugarplum Fairy in the ballet, but I suck at titles, so it’s going to remain Operation: Sugarplum for the time being.
But onto WIPpet Wednesday! I did try convincing myself that I should write the whole outline before I start writing any of the text, but yeah, like that was ever going to happen. Some of you may remember (though that is unlikely) this WIPpet Wednesday from May, which takes place immediately after Clara and co. discover that Lauren is working for the enemy. The scene I’m about to share with you is 14 lines from the new version of that scene, taking into account the changes I’ve made, and I wrote it earlier today, so it couldn’t be much more of a first draft if it tried.
“Who was that?” Clara asked, but no one answered. Drosselmeier was looking at Max, concerned, while Max himself had shoved his hands in the pockets of his suit and was pacing the cave.
“Max,” Drosselmeier said finally. “I think you should explain to Clara.”
Max stopped pacing and looked up, though his shoulders remained hunched and he kept his hands in his pockets. He looked at his uncle briefly, and then took a deep breath and looked at Clara.
“Her name is Lauren Pirlipat,” he said. “About a year and a half ago, she was interning at Drosselmeier Industries. I met her in the cafe one day and we hit off and a little while later, started dating. We were together for about six months…”
“And then?” Clara prompted when it seemed Max wasn’t going to continue.
“And then she disappeared without a trace. She handed in her pass at work, packed up her flat, stopped answering my calls… I called the police but they turned up nothing. It was like she never existed. I guess if she was here, that explains a lot.”
He frowned, and looked like he was going to start pacing again. Clara quickly crossed the cave and pulled him into a hug. He returned the embrace and rested his chin on the top of her head. She felt him ball one hand into a fist against her back and wished she could think of something helpful to say.
There are two ways you can join in on WIPpet Wednesday. Either post an excerpt from your current WIP, or write the opening of a new one, that somehow corresponds to the day’s date. I posted fourteen lines for the fourteenth of August, but you can play around with it (chapter numbers, numbers of lines/sentences/paragraphs, page numbers, everything counts, and we don’t mind what mathematical operations you throw in either). Once you’ve written up your post, leave your details at this linky and check out some of the other offerings the WIPpeteers have brought to the table this week. I also encourage you to stop by some other ROW80 participants at today’s blog hop and cheer them on.
It is now 10pm, so I think it’s time to start considering sleeping. I look forward to reading all your blogs in the morning!