The Sky and the Roses

The Little Watson Girl's Dreams on Paper

Chapter one: Autumn March 9, 2010

Filed under: Novel Project — lilwatsongirl @ 4:54 pm

It’s strange how every year, without fail, the leaves on the trees change.  They start out all the same, all green, but then one by one they turn the colors of autumn.  It was just the same this year, the year two kinds of autumn were born: the autumn the world brings to pass every year, and Autumn Free.

* * *

Autumn’s blue eyes opened, and she peeled her forehead off the window.  Her red hair was tangled and sticking to her face, and she had a print on her forehead from the window.   She glanced at the clock, which was glaring at her in angry red numbers that said it was seven in the morning.

The sun was just peeking over the tops of the oak trees, painting the sky a vibrant shade of pink.  The leaves on the trees, already orange, turned blood red in the sunrise.

Autumn slid off the window seat, smiling and yawning at the same time.  This was a special sunrise.  It was the sunrise of Autumn’s sixteenth birthday.

Just as Autumn was wondering if she was the only one awake, the door flew open, and her older brother burst into the room, singing and dancing as he came, “Happy birthday to you!  Happy birthday to you!  Happy birthday dear Autumn!  Happy birthday to you!”  He pinned Autumn to the wall and began tickling her.

Gideon was an interesting brother, he was really cool and all the girls liked him, and his ability to make people laugh was endless.

Autumn was gasping for breath and laughing, trying to throw Gideon, who was two years older and much, much bigger, off of her.

Gideon finally stopped and let Autumn get her breath back.

“So, how’s the birthday girl?” he asked, rumpling her already messy scarlet hair.

“I’m great, how’s the un-birthday boy?”

“I’m great too.”  Gideon flopped down on the floor and sighed.  He looked nothing like Autumn, with his green eyes, brown hair (it was extremely talented hair tht was able to stick up in the back in the mornings, no matter how short Gideon cut it.) and straight, Roman nose.

“You’d better get dressed, little missy.  You don’t want Luke and Blossom showing up with you still in your pajamas.”

Luke and Blossom Pinomaki were Autumn’s two best friends.  They were a year apart, but they looked enough alike to be twins.  Both had blonde hair, the same profile, and the same round, intelligent eyes, even though Luke’s were brown and Blossom’s were green.

“Luke and Blossom are coming over?” Autumn asked, happily tossing shirts into her brother’s lap, from where he would absent-mindedly pick them up and toss them on top of Autumn’s drum set.

“Mhmm.  Apparently Luke tried to make you a birthday cake yesterday… What is this?”

“Oh poor Mrs. Pinomaki, I hope she made Luke clean up after himself, and I hope he didn’t make anything explode like last time, and that, dear Gideon, would be a leg-warmer.”

“Oh.  I was thinking you had tried to sew a puppet or something…”  He stuck his arm through the leg-warmer and folded the ends around his fingers, making something similar to a sock puppet.  He began speaking in a high, falsetto voice.  “Hi!  My name’s leggy!  I live in Autumn’s closet, which she really needs to clean, and-“

Laughing, Autumn chased Gideon from the room with a t-shirt, and just before she slammed the door in his face, the leg-warmer/puppet, still on his hand,

said “Bye bye!”

Laughing to herself about her bizarre brother, Autumn got dressed.  Having red hair really limited her choice of clothing color.  She couldn’t wear red or orange, because it looked so dreadful with her hair, and pink was even worse, but blue looked nice.

Autumn made her way downstairs, just in time to see Luke and Blossom coming up her front steps.  She flung open the door and was promptly confronted with another loud chorus of happy birthday, as well as hugging and more hair-rumpling.

Autumn expected Luke and Blossom to come inside, but instead they pulled her outside.  “We have somewhere we want to take you.”  Blossom explained, smiling in her shy way.

Autumn consented to having her hands duct taped behind her back and a blindfold being put over her eyes, and finally a pillowcase over her head.  Luke then picked her up around the waist, and threw her in the back seat of Luke’s old Junker.

They drove for maybe ten minutes, and the road got bumpier and bumpier.  Autumn had an idea where they were, since the only place this close with this bumpy or a road was the forest park.  She knew the forest quite well, after having been living here for almost her entire life, but she didn’t have a good enough sense of direction to know where they were.

A little while later, after much gear-shifting and jolting, the car rolled to a stop.  The back door opened, and Luke pulled Autumn out of the car, and Blossom pulled off the pillowcase and the blindfold while Luke cut the duct tape off.

The place was beautiful.   Autumn had been right to guess that they were in the forest.  There were oak trees and pine trees all around, and leaves covered the ground, which dipped down to a gargling river.  Morning light filtered through the leaves, a bright golden color, and spread out across the grass was a picnic blanket, with breakfast food covering it.  Right in the center was a big cake, with “Autumn Sky Free” written in yellow, in Blossoms beautiful handwriting.  All around the edges there were yellow and pink roses, real ones, devoid of thorns, bent together in a weaving sort of pattern.

Autumn laughed with delight “Did you make this?”

Luke smiled, brushing a strand of blonde hair from his face. “I helped with the frosting, but Blossom did the baking.”

“Luke put the roses on.”  Blossom said smiling.

“It’s beautiful.”  Autumn hugged both of her friends, feeling more appreciated than she could ever remember feeling.

* * *

“It is incredible how many odd looks one gets when one goes through a store, dripping wet, with pink and yellow roses in ones hair.”

“They’re all just jealous.”  Autumn said, handing a couple shirts to Luke, who, like her and Blossom, was soaked from the river, and who had all the roses from Autumn’s birthday cake in his hair.

“Oh I’m sure they are.  Didn’t you see that guy with all the tattoos and the earring?  He glared at me like ‘How dare you look cooler than me?’”

Blossom’s laugh rang out from inside the dressing room “You should go to D.C. like that, Luke.”

“Oh I plan to.”

Autumn smiled.  Right at that exact second, her life seemed to be perfect.  She thought ‘I hope it stays like this  forever.’

Little did she know that this would be the last day of happiness that she would know for a very long time.

Chapter summary

It’s Autumn’s Sixteenth birthday, and she and her friends have the best day ever.  Autumn marvels at how wonderful her life is.  Little does she know that she is heading straight into a time where there will be almost no happiness.

 

Ups and Downs

Filed under: Sandbox — lilwatsongirl @ 4:51 pm

Cameron threw the book across the room, and listened to the satisfying thump as it hit the wall.

“That was the stupidest… Ugh!” She picked up her phone to call Lesley, her dark hair swinging and her brown eyes blazing as they always did when she was upset.

*       *       *

Lesley’s phone began buzzing.  She pulled it out of her pocket, and saw that it was Cameron.

She flipped it open, “Cam!” She said.

Cameron’s voice came through the receiver, “Hey Lesley. I finished that book you gave me.”

“Autumn Sky?”

“Yeah.”

“Wasn’t it incredible?  Did Luke remind you of Brandon at all?”

“Um, no not really. I did think Blossom was a bit like you, but I didn’t like it.  Not that I didn’t like Blossom, I just don’t like the book.”

*       *       *

“You didn’t like it?” Lesley sounded disappointed.  Cameron shook her head and then remembered Lesley couldn’t see her and said, “No, I really didn’t.”

“Why not?  I thought it was kind of cool how it had like a moral sort of without being like a fable, and the writing style was actually pretty okay if you think about it.”

“The author seemed Emo, like she was just trying to depress me.  I mean it didn’t even all resolve at the end, if you think about it!  She still has all those legal issues and her dad is still not living with her and her mom is still upset, nothing changes!” Cameron was tugging her sleeves, holding the phone to her ear with her shoulder.

“Well I know but that’s the point.  Ok, no that’s not the point, but the point is that no matter what happens you should never give up hope.  It was a hopeful ending.”

“How was that a hopeful ending?”

*       *       *

Lesley sighed patiently, tucking a strand of short, blonde hair behind her ear.  Cameron was a smart girl but sometimes…

“Cam, it was hopeful because she had a new perspective on things.  She had figured out how to turn her life around, and she was working on changing her situation.  She had Luke and Blossom at her back and she knew the truth.”

And just what is the truth?”

“That no matter what you should never give up hope, I already said that.”

“Oh.  Well that’s true, but there were some things in the writing that bothered me.  Like the fact that the author has obviously never had a near-death-by-drowning experience.”

“You have a point there.  But I wasn’t focusing so much on the writing as the meaning behind it.  And you have to admit, when it came to describing using the five senses, it was pretty good.”

*       *       *

Cameron rolled her eyes.  “Yeah, but a lot of books do that.  Besides, the fact that Autumn and Blossom were still friends even after all those years and all that changing, that’s totally unrealistic.  I mean, people can be friends for a long period of time, but not if they are as different as Blossom and Autumn.”

“We’re pretty different,”

“Yeah but not that different.  And for another thing, the author made some of the characters be too perfect, like, basically flawless.  Take Luke for example, he’s Mr.  Luke Perfect, and all the girls like him, and sure, guys seem like that a lot of the time, but they never really are, every guy has flaws, so does every girl.”

“Blossom was the flawless one, not Luke, since Luke did in fact have flaws.  But I noticed that, what your saying.  I think you might be right, and that the author put people in too perfect a light.  That could have been better.  But could the emotion have been much better? Think about it?  Could it?”

Cameron paused.  There had been some very strong, emotional parts in the story, parts that had made her run to the bathroom for a tissue box, that was true. “I guess your right, that was some good writing.”

*       *       *

“The author is an actor, and she knows how to show lots of emotion without just saying ‘So-and-so was mad’ or whatever.”

“Hmm.  Interesting.”

“And, Cam, about the ending, think about it, was it really so bad?  Honestly think about it and think about the road that lays ahead for Autumn.”

*       *       *

Cameron thought.  It was true Autumn would have a very difficult time ahead of her, but Lesley did have an excellent point, that Autumn now had hope and something to live for.  Cameron knew what it was like to have nothing to live for, and she realized that hope was, in fact, a wonderful thing.

“Ok Les,  guess you might be right, it wasn’t THAT bad.  I’m not putting ‘Autumn Sky’ on my favorites shelf, but I wont but it in the trash can either, ok?”

*       *       *

Lesley grinned.  “You have yourself a deal.”  She picked up her copy of ‘Autumn Sky’ and looked at the cover.   It had a girl with red hair and blue eyes looking up at the leaves and the sky above her, and blonde girl hugging her on the left, and a blonde boy with his arm around her on the right.

There was a knock on the door, and Brandon walked in. He saw Lesley on the phone and mouthed “time for dinner”

“Hey Cameron I have to go.  But I’ll talk to you later!”

“Ok, later Les.”

“Later Cam.”

What book is that?” Brandon asked, coming over to investigate.

“It’s called Autumn Sky.  Want to borrow it?  You can if you like.”

Brandon shrugged.  “Sure.”

 

Novel project Outline March 1, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — lilwatsongirl @ 8:15 pm

Title: Autumn Sky

Author: Bethany Watson

Genre: YA fiction

Audience: Teenagers

Characters

Autumn Sky Free: Autumn in the main character in this story.  She is a sixteen-year-old girl living in small town Virginia.  She has reddish hair and Blue eyes the color of the sky, that she lines with dark eyeliner.  She is a spunky girl who loves running in the woods, singing techno music, and big dogs.  She enjoys making music videos, and being on stage.  She seems practically fearless to those around her, and all the guys wish she was their girlfriend, but she’s totally not interested in a relationship.  She is never seen without Luke and Blossom.

Blossom Pinomaki: Blossom is Autumn’s best friend and they are as different as night and day.  Everyone says some day they will fight and never speak to each other again, but they have been friends since they were seven, and it hasn’t happened yet.  Blossom has long blonde hair and gentle green eyes, and she enjoys playing acoustic guitar, and singing, and reading.  She is very quiet, and rather shy.  She wears pink and blue almost every day, as well as sparkly eye shadow.

Luke Pinomaki:  17-year-old Luke finishes off the trio perfectly by adding a touch of boy attitude to Autumn’s spunk and Blossom’s sweetness.  Luke is a blonde, like Blossom, and he has piercing blue eyes with long, dark lashes.  He plays electric guitar, and loves his baby sister Blossom more than anything.  Luke has always kind of liked Autumn, but he never admits it, even to himself,

because he feels weird liking his best friend, and besides he knows Autumn would be weirded out by his liking her, so he keeps his thought to himself.

Point of View

This story is told in third person, but generally from Autumn’s point of view.  The reader does however g

et insights into Blossom’s and Luke’s minds from time to time.

Setting

This story takes place in modern day, in Virginia, at both night time and day time.

Plot Outline

Autumn and her friends’ lives seem absolutely perfect… and in fact Autumn’s life seems almost too perfect. Then, all of a sudden, everything comes crashing down when Autumn discovers that her dad has been cheating on her mom.  Her parents are suddenly involved in a lot of legal activity, and Autumn fears she may never see her dad again.  In

this difficult time, Autumn tries to run away from home, and tries to kill herself.  She is found, half drowned, by Luke who saves her life and then, with the help of his sister Blossom, saves her broken heart.  In the end, Autumn realizes that no matter what, life is a precious gift from God, and that it should not be tossed away on a whim.  Autumn comes to the decision that she will do everything in her power to help her failing family, and in turn, her spiritually failing father.

Conflict

One major conflict seen in this story is the conflict Autumn feels within herself as she wonders whether she can ever truly love her father again, or whether she will hate him for what he did.

A second conflict seen in this story is Autumn’s struggle for life.  In a way, she wants to just disappear and not have to deal with any of this anymore, and also she wants to be there for her mom.

Another, smaller conflict is that of Luke, trying to decide how he feels about Autumn.

Theme

True friendship and pure love can help heal any wound, and it’s never to late to change.

Literary Devices

Allusion: The places referenced in the story are real p

laces, taken from the place where I grew up: small town Virginia.

Conflict: see above

Imagery: imagery is used often in this story.  (i.e. when Autumn comes close to drowning, imagery is used to describe the water)

Setting: there are some very definite references to the 21st century and some very definite references to my little town.

!Watson!