clarion west week 5-ish (and 6) report

Due to some miscalculation on my part, I ended up starting my write-a-thon midway through the week instead of the start. So of course I did the most sensible thing possible, and crammed the last two weeks into one and a half.

Short story: “The Rest of Lias Igdo”

Word count: 2,789

Status: Incomplete

The good: Some actual story continuity between this one and the previous! I’m so excited.

The bad: Oops, I’m sorry I accidentally betrayed you, no hard feelings, right? (Wrong.)

The resigned: This wasn’t so much of “one story” as it was “three different possible starts for a story.” I have a definite favorite, so all that’s next is to develop that one.


The whiskey was raw with imperfections, strong enough to knock down a horse, the sort of thing I’d stomached when I was younger, loving it for the mere fact that it would get me drunk. It had been Lias who’d taught me how to appreciate liquor for the taste, not just the strength. We’d spent hours in small-town pubs, shot glasses lined up in an endless row like soldiers marching into the pit of battle, him never speaking, never lecturing, just setting drink after drink in front of me until the harshness mellowed and sweeter notes began to surface, all on their own.

He’d been mentor, teacher, father. He’d taught me how to read the weather and track the stars, how to skin forest pigs and burn ichormoss at night to keep wildlife at bay, all in the same way as he’d taught me to drink whiskey: no words, no soapboxes, just me figuring things out for myself and him keeping a watchful eye on me.


Three and a half short stories in six weeks. Not bad, not bad at all. I didn’t make my goal of six short story drafts, but it was always an Improbably Yet Totally Necessarily Improbable Goal anyways.

Right now I’m just breathing a sigh of relief that I powered through the whole thing. And it’s actually sparked a whole host of other ideas that I’m itching to dive into. Let the good times roll.


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