Q. What is the name of your character? Is she fictional or a historic person?
Ambrosia is a fictional woman of twenty-nine in my literary fiction work in progress. I decided I’d introduce her to you all as I get to know her myself. I met her years ago when I did a flash fiction challenge and now I’ve been playing around with her full story these past couple of weeks. Thanks for giving me a chance to describe her.
Q. When and where is the story set?
The story takes place in the depths of Georgia after the death of a loved one. Ambrosia’s family home is on a lake and isolated from much of her normal life. The land feels like a rich secret, but one she doesn’t want to know for fear that the truth will be worse than the possibilities.
Q. What should we know about her?
Ambrosia is a survivor, but she’s tired of surviving. She’s ready to live again and the death of her loved one may make that possible.
Q. What is the main conflict? What messes up her life?
Her life has already been messed up. The conflict is with Ambrosia finding and accepting normal while grieving and recreating herself. She is her own conflict as she encounters a slew of characters challenging and pushing her away from the past and into the unknown, with a beauty and power she’s never seen before.
Q. What is the personal goal of the character?
Ambrosia wants to find a place of solitude and magic, where she can bare her soul and find peace. She may have the right place, but is she ready for the journey?
Q. Is there a working title for this novel, and can we read more about it?
I usually don’t name my books until they are nearly or completely finished. So far, this one only goes by Sweet and Sour. I will paste an excerpt below that is the first scene I wrote for this character.
Q. When can we expect the book to be published?
Good question. I should go finish the first draft so I might be closer to that possibility.
I pushed the brush and tree limbs away and moved to the edge of the lake. I wanted to touch it.
I bent down over the muddied rocks, dipping my fingertips in the water. The surface was calm and barely disturbed by the movement of my hand trailing back and forth as I fully submerged it. The diamond in my engagement ring managed to shimmer even under the murky waters.
It was still cool despite the high temperatures we’d had all month. I’d mentally and physically sweated through each day of this week. It was relieving to have it all over with, but crushing, too.
Screw it. So what if mud would ruin my black dress? I sat down and slipped off my shoes. At least I’d worn flats. I stretched out until my legs were more than halfway in the lake and the water was threatening to creep up my thighs. The chill was a shock, but I didn’t withdraw. The storm clouds were collecting in the sky above – grey on blue.
Maybe the rain would cool the air enough to blend with the feel of the lake, a caress from nature to hold me in one piece.
I bent over to brush my hands along the water again and this time caught my reflection from the late day sun. My expression was peaceful. Resigned. Grateful.
I found myself digging to the base of the lake and pulling out rocks so I could throw them as far and as hard as possible. An urgent need to break and destroy overtook me, as my shoes found my grasp and I pitched them long and hard, not waiting to see where they landed. I needed more to throw. I imagined the frightened fish and displaced mud as I flung rocks and debris, fingers not finding them fast enough to match my breathing and heart rate.
I got on my knees, feeling around for the largest stone I could find, scraping knuckles along the harsh earth. I dug out the widest stone, stood up in the water and hurled it towards the lake’s center with a half grunt, half scream. .
It didn’t go as far as I would have liked.
The lake was getting harder to see, the light fading behind the clouds as the storm cheated me of the last rays of dusk. I wiped at the tears on my cheek, knowing the smudge of mud it probably left behind.
I looked down to see my pale legs still standing in the water with dirt dripping down from the knees. Feeling resigned again, I waded out into the lake, past the furthest distance thrown, until my chin rested on the water. I’d wait for the last of the clear sky to be taken by the clouds until it became completely dark. Then I’d go back home.