Saturday, January 8, 2011

Show & Tell - Coming Home

By Graylin Fox

Coming Home is a short story set in the marshes off the coast of Georgia. Lyn has returned to her ancestral home. Her life and heart recently shattered by the loss of her husband and small son, she is welcomed back with open arms. And concern for her safety. The lovely brownies who helped her Grandmother raise her know what is coming when she settles in for the night, as does Theena, a water dryad who lives in the marsh off the back garden. She shared her wisdom and her love with the young fairy in her youth.

The nightmares Lyn remembered from her childhood come to life and come out of the fireplace. Why is she being attacked? Where are these creatures coming from? She’ll have to survive the night to ask.

I live in the marshes off Savannah Georgia. There is something about driving to and from work over the bridges spanning marshland that inspires the writer in me. Some days, I leave home and the island wrapped in fog, barely able to see the streetlights, I get to the bridge and there the fog is a beautiful golden hue. The fog settled just below the bridge and off to the side I can see flocks of birds breaking through the fog to head offshore. A moving postcard makes me forget I’m driving.

This story is set there, on the edge of the marsh, in an old plantation home barely noticeable beyond the morning fog. That’s where I got the location and the inspiration for the story. I love the paranormal and the idea of brownies and a dryad in this environment made me glow.

Lyn starts as a tragic character with a wounded heart. Her journey is brief but we quickly see the strong, independent fairy her family knew. I love writing characters that have gained their strength through heartbreak. It builds an internal fortress that allows for less tiptoeing around issues. Or, in other words, it allows me to write tough characters that have earned that toughness.

I’m often, as with this post, asked to describe what went into my writing a story. The honest answer is listening. I didn’t plan or outline this one. I just started writing and the story unfolded as I went. I was as surprised by the ending as you will be. That’s the part of writing I love most. Rarely, if ever, am I more than an enraptured observer describing a story unfolding in my imagination.

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Maureen said...

Ah, you really described the process perfectly. I love it when the story just flows out of the fingers as if it is revealed to me.

It's real magic!

Anonymous said...

I have NO idea what I would do if I had to force it. It takes me longer to write and do edits this way, but it feels more natural to me.

Taryn Kincaid said...

The way you've described the marshlands that inspire you is so lyrical and poetical, as pretty and poignant as the snippets you've treated us to on Six Sentence Sunday. This has gotto be a beautifully-written book!

Deena said...

Graylin, great post! My first novel unfolded before my eyes and I felt as though my fingers were possessed by the story as they flew across the keyboard. Everyday, I would sit in front of the computer and say, "Okay Michael, Emma, what happened while I was away?" lol

Laurel said...

You've been holding out on me! This is right up my up on the Kindle queue!

And I do love those bridges and the water. The other thing I like about the landscape where you are is the oaks. Huge, gnarled, sheathed in moss. If there are dryads, they live on the Georgia coast.

Anonymous said...


Deena, I'm like that with all of my writing. The reason is that I'm a poet first. I add the dialogue in as I go but I write stories as poems.

I'm not hiding things from you. This was released on the first and we hadn't snooki'ed just yet ;)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful imagery, Graylin.

Bridges scare the crap out of me, so I would stay home all the time if I lived in your house! LOL

But you make it sound gorgeous. :-)

Decadent Publishing

Anonymous said...

Gorgeous and natural. Got caught in traffic one day. Vultures were hopping across the street. I wrote a poem about it and it's posted here:

Yes, I'm a little weird that way.

Anonymous said...

ARGH!! Wrong link :)

Here is link:

Kinda feeling duh now.


Kathleen said...

Hi Graylin,

I enjoyed your post. I like it when a writer's vision is inspired by a beautiful setting. The sunset at the beach does it for me.

All the best with Coming Home.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Kathleen!

Maureen said...

I can remember in the Sacramento Valley when the fog would roll in and if you were on a bridge or a levy road, it was like you were driving just above the clouds...

Anonymous said...

Same feeling here. Driving over clouds.