Saturday, March 25, 2017

TAG #4 - The Snippet Tag (Fairytale Themed)

What ho, my friends! We've come to round four of this month of tag catch-up. In December, Deborah O'Carroll @ The Road of a Writer included me in the Snippet Tag (created by Madeline J. Rose).


The rules are as follows:

-Include the graphic somewhere in your post (or make your own, just so long as you include a link back to Madeline's blog).
-Answer all the questions, however you want to. Creative interpretation is key here! You can use the book you’re currently working on to answer the questions, or other books you’ve started or have written.
-Tag 2-5 other bloggers.

I wanted to feature The Brightest Thread, seeing as it's my primary writing focus right now, but I didn't want to limit myself to just one story (nor did I want to bore you all with nonstop gushing about Luci and Hadrian and spindle trees and dreams). So to diversify things a bit, I thought I'd bring in my other two fairytale retellings (both novella-sized): Blood Rose, and The Glass Girl. I haven't discussed either of them a whole lot on the blog, so it'll be fun to share a couple of glimpses.

Although I must admit, after skimming through them in search of snippets, I cringed to myself at the stories' weak spots. Yet it was encouraging at the same time to see that I have grown and made progress since then.

Without further ado, let's get on to the questions. My {comments} are inserted in fancy shmancy brackets.

1. Share your most gripping, fascinating, and hooking first line of a story.

Not in centuries had the mountains rung with such gladness.

-The Brightest Thread

{This remains one of my favorite first lines.}

2. Share a snippet that literally just crushes your heart into a million feelsy little pieces.

She was Iroran—not one of the thousands he’d always yearned to help—and yet she, too, was chained. And he could break those chains.

“I must break them,” he whispered to the shadows.

Hadrian threw on a cloak, stuffed crushed gildroot in his pocket, and snatched a pack for provisions. As he rushed down darkened passages, his heart beat painfully in his chest. Strange—he was sure his heart had been stolen by the weeping maiden in his dreams.

-The Brightest Thread

{It's off to the rescue!}

3. Share a snippet that makes you want to shout to the world that you’re SO. HAPPY.

But time went on, and I learned to find happiness in what I had left. I spent hours in the studio with Father, helping him stoke the furnace and learning how to use the glassmaking tools. While his team of six workers mixed ingredients, poured molten glass into molds, or formed vessels by hand, I stayed at my father’s side. Watching. Experimenting. Learning his magic. He was so skilled, sometimes I thought he was a Vibrant, a legendary individual blessed with supernatural powers. But of course he wasn’t – Vibrants were only fairy-tales, after all.

Whenever I tired of the furnace’s heat, I would make my way to the shop at the front of the building, where daylight played over Father’s brilliant wares. Crystal clear goblets, painted dishes, and multihued vases were artfully arranged in the front windows. Prisms and ornaments dangled from the ceiling, throwing rainbows and spots of color across the walls. Glass trinkets and baubles and figurines graced the shelves like little treasures dropped by fairies. If I wasn’t spending my day in the studio, I was whiling away the hours in that wonderland of color and transparency.

-The Glass Girl

{From the opening act of my Cinderella retelling. Although the story bears many flaws, the visuals in this scene capture a childhood happiness that I still love.}

4. Share a snippet that gives a bit of insight into one of your most favorite characters ever.

She entombed the star in her fingers. No, such hopes could not be afforded. Not when death lay weeks away, immovable as a mountain. Hoping would only make it more painful when it came.

Her wrist tingled where Hadrian’s fingers had touched her. Strong and slender fingers, calloused, with dirt under the nails. He liked digging in the dirt. He liked making things grow.

“I’m just a dream to him.”

Luci curled into a ball, imprisoned star pressed to her sternum, and tried not to think of the prince who plucked light from the heavens and asked for her name.

-The Brightest Thread

{Luci just breaks my heart. She spends far too long pushing away exactly what it is she yearns for.}

5. Share a snippet that literally melts you into a puddle of adorable, squishy, OTP mush.

The first thing she noticed in the transition from sleep to wakefulness was pain—in her head and in her right foot. Emi moaned.

“Good, you’re awake.”

Prying her eyelids open, she struggled to work out where she was and what had happened. A soft pillow cushioned her head. Whose bed am I in? She tried to rise, but lightning seared inside her skull. “Ow.” She covered her face with her hands.

“Just stay still,” Will said. “You knocked your head.”

“It feels like a rock bounced off me,” she muttered, peeking at him through her fingers.

“I think it was the other way around.”

-Blood Rose

{In case you didn't know, OTP stands for one true pairing, and refers to a fictional couple you love. In this case, I still adore Will and Emi together. The beginning stage of their relationship is so light and fun compared to what comes later. Heheh.}

6. Share a snippet that gets you beaming with pride and you’re just like yep, I wrote that beauty.

Long-forbidden memories tugged at him, and for a moment he relented. They drew him back to hazy summers, when laughing eyes teased him and a girlish giggle chased him down the corridors. When all it took was a plump red apple or a daring climb up the wall to enchant her. How distant those days seemed. Years and use had polished the memories to a sheen, softening their edges and lending them the golden air of dreams.

And yet for all their beauty, both idealized and real, these echoes of yesterday brought with them a sharp pain. For always the summer was swallowed up by winter. Forest romps, once spirited adventures, became attempts at distraction. Her laughs grew less frequent. Unfamiliar faces passed through the manor, arriving confident and departing solemn. Hushed whispers, closed doors, forced smiles, lingering glances…

Thus, summer died at winter’s hand. And then even winter surrendered to darkness, and the night reigned supreme.

-Blood Rose

{Still a favorite excerpt of mine!}

7. Share a snippet of genius, deliciously witty dialogue between your characters.

Luci eyed her company. “Master Boris.”

Her tutor raised his head. “Yes, Princess?”

“Have I ever mentioned you have the nose of a pig?”

Boris blinked and touched his round, upturned nose. “I—no, Princess, you haven’t.”

“I think it goes lovely with your squinty little eyes.”

Aleida hiccupped, but Luci suspected it was a cloaked giggle.

Boris’s face reddened. “Er, thank you, Princess.”

“Alucinora,” Mother said. “I’ve never heard such an insult leave your lips.”

Luci fought back a grin. “I was merely pointing out his natural talent.” In truth, every time she sat under his schooling, she couldn’t put the image of a pig out of mind.

Aleida’s shoulders quaked.

Mother set her fork down with a clang. “Alucinora, perhaps you should keep your compliments on others’ talents to yourself.” She forced a smile. “After all, today is about you.”

-The Brightest Thread

{When a princess "blessed"--or in her mind, cursed--with the gift of diplomacy finds a way to repress her gift for a day, and is finally free to speak her mind . . . well, that's when the fun begins.}

8. Share a snippet that makes you feel like an evil genius for thinking up such a malevolent villain (Mwa-ha-ha!)

Lady Lurline stepped closer, seeming to tower over me on my little workbench. With her ebony hair swept up on her head and her sharp nose pointed down at me, she made me feel like I was under the shadow of a large raven. “Do not question me, Cinderella,” she hissed. “If I ask for something, you give it to me.” She put one hand over my burnt one and squeezed hard, her fingernails digging into me skin. “Do – you – understand?”

Something inside me finally cracked. Father’s death had shoved my heart into a fiery furnace. Then the Lady’s demands had yanked my heart out again into instant cold. I should’ve known that such an abrupt change would cause me to shatter like glass that hadn’t been cooled properly.

I stared up into Lady Lurline’s dark eyes. Isadora, Mysteres do exist. Your mother is one, the devil. Her grip tightened. I glanced down and saw little beads of blood where her fingernails had pierced my hand.

“I will ask you once more, Ellesandra,” she whispered. “What is your recipe?”

“I’m not going to tell you.”

She flung my hand away and stepped back. “Then you have brought this upon yourself.” Fingers splayed and palm down, she extended her right hand. Her skin seemed to darken, first to ash grey, then to coal black.

I jumped off the bench and backpedalled, heart racing. My thought had come true!

She began chanting. “Fires hot and rocks so deep, thunderclouds and skies that weep – to my side you now amass…”

My legs hit a bench, stopping my backward path. Whimpering, I raised my hands in a weak attempt to protect myself.

The Lady’s eyes glowed yellow. “…Turn flesh and bone to limbs of glass!”

Blinding white flashed across my range of vision, bringing with it both searing heat and glacial cold. A scream – my own? – pierced my eardrums. Pain lancing through every nerve, I collapsed on the floor.

-The Glass Girl

{Probably the best scene involving Lady Lurline.}

9. Share a snippet that leaves you breathless, in a cold sweat with action-induced intensity.

The twinge grew to a throb beating in time with his heart. The air thinned; [Will] sucked in a shallow breath. “Emi, there are…things…I need to…explain.” He blinked hard, tried to clear the fog enfolding his brain.

She shook her head. “I think you’ve explained enough.”

“No, there’s…more,” he grunted, swaying on his feet and gripping the bars for balance.




The girl said something, but her words sounded garbled and strange. Will stared down at the floor and fought off the mounting wave of bestial desire.




It descended all at once. Tearing, rending agony; a maelstrom of crimson. He dropped to the ground, felt the vibration of a growl low in his throat.

Clawing at the stones. A howl streaming from his lips. Blood rushing through his veins. Red.

Stone rose up on either side, hemming him in, trapping him. Muscles bunched beneath his skin. He threw himself at the bars.




He crashed against the walls. Pain flared. He lunged again, snarling, scraping, panting.

A sound, high and offensive to his ears, knifed through the air. He turned. A she-creature cried out in a language he didn’t know. He crouched there, staring at her. Heat radiated from her flesh. She was alive. She was prey.

Lips peeled back in a roar to end all roars, he slammed into the bars. They quaked but held firm. The she-creature stumbled backward. He smelled fear.


-Blood Rose

{I think I was almost breathless when writing this scene.}

10. Share a snippet of a most interesting first meeting between your characters.

“Are you alright?” the dove asked. It wasn’t a bird, but a girl standing pale in the moonlight, golden-red hair loose and windblown. As if suddenly aware of his gaze, she turned her back, but not before he caught a glimpse of rainwater eyes.

“It’s you!”

She stood with arms crossed and spine rigid.

“You’ve been haunting my dreams,” [Hadrian] continued. “Who are you?”

“My name matters little.”

“It does if it belongs to the one who rescued me.”

“Falling would’ve woken you up, not killed you. I hardly call what I did a rescue.”

Hadrian sidestepped in an effort to see her face, but she turned too. “Since this is a dream, it makes no difference if I know your name.” But never before had his dreams been so lifelike. What could have inspired his mind to conjure her?

After a moment, her posture relaxed. “Fine. I’ll trade my name for three items from you.”

He chuckled. “One for three? You sound like a valley bargainer.”

“Sensibility isn’t required in dreams.”

-The Brightest Thread

{I'm so looking forward to expanding, perhaps even changing, their first meeting. A dream realm allows for some pretty fun experimentation, a strange and otherworldly backdrop to the beginning of the story's central relationship. Yay!}

Thanks for reading! Now the time comes to tag some fellow writers . . .

P.S. I have had zero time to reply to comments this past week, and it looks like I'll have less than zero time next week (yes, we are pretending that is possible). Do keep leaving those comments, and rest assured I'll return to converse with you once March is over!


  1. EEEEEEEE!!!!! I LOVE WHEN YOU POST SNIPPETS. I just cannot get enough gorgeously, drool-worthy Tracey writing EVER. I WANT TO EAT IT UP. I'm loooving the fairytale theme. ALL THE WONDERFUL FAIRYTALE, TRACEY-GENIUS GOODNESS. And GLASS GIRL. It's so exciting getting a look into that story. I feel like I know nothing about it, but from the snippets it looks amazing. o.o

    I'm getting alllll the feels reading back over scenes from TBT and BR. SLDKJFLJLDSJLJF. SO MANY EMOTIONS. SO MUCH GORGEOUSNESS.

    Oh my gracious goodness, that snippet of Glass Girl in #3. O_o I can see why you love the visual scene because aaaahhhhhh! I'm just reveling in the beauty.

    I forgot how unbelievably much I shipped Will and Emi. MY BBYS. <3 But also... "The beginning stage of their relationship is so light and fun compared to what comes later." <--- To put it lightly. XD Or maybe a D': emoji is more accurate...

    That scene in #6. *clutches heart* I'm just drowning in beauty with all these.

    That part in TBT you shared in #7 is still to this day one of my favorite scenes in the story. I can't with Luci. XD

    Oh my word. Lady Lurline sounds... O_O I don't even KNOW! TRACEY. SHE IS TERRIFYING. Like...that gave me CHILLS and I don't even know what's going on. You ARE an evil genius! *shivers* And then the next scene you shared, when Will turns into his beastly form. *hides under covers and whimpers* YOUR WRITING GIVES ME ALL THE FEEEEELS.

    THIS WAS SUCH A TREAT GETTING ALL THESE SNIPPETS. I could happily read your writing forever and ever and EVERRRRR. I'm not just saying this, Tracey, I'm being perfectly honest when I say you have one of my top, TOP favorite writing voices out of ANY I've ever read, published or otherwise. God gifted you with such an amazing talent, and I am so happy you're using it! THE WORLD NEEDS YOUR STORIES. <333333

    1. Your reactions are golden, as always! <333 Thank you ever so much, Christine!!! Glass Girl was a fun story to write, but it has some big issues, not the least of which is the insta-love (or the lack of chapter divisions, lol).

      It makes me ridiculously warm and fuzzy thinking of BR and TBT bringing back memories for you! ^____^ That reminds ME of those lovely beta emails.

      Gahhh, thank you!

      Both emojis are highly accurate. XD They go from lighthearted banter to...well, I won't spoil anything here in public, but you know what I mean! Anyway, I always feel so honored when someone loves my precious charries like that.


      Lady Lurline IS a pretty scary woman. The whole Vibrants and Mysteres concept is one I might want to reuse, if I don't end up rewriting Glass Girl one of these days. (I just might revamp it, who knows. #somanystoriessolittletime)

      But Christiiiiine, I don't even know what to say to that! Believe me when I say that is one of the HIGHEST compliments I've ever received on my writing. You're such a treasure! Thank you for your unceasing encouragement! <3333 I, too, cannot wait to see what God is going to do with YOUR incredible writing talent.

  2. Tracey, your stuff is beautiful and you deserve to be published. I hate commenting after Christine because she always says all of it. But I swear that as soon as you publish a book, I will buy it. Like, immediately. Keep doing what you're doing. These snippets are beautimous.

    1. Haha, don't even worry about comparing comments! Whether you use many words or just a few, I'm touched. And I'm blown away by yours! Thank you SO very much for your encouragement and support! It gives me hope that there are people who will want to read my books one day. <333

  3. Beautiful! Your writing has improved so much, Tracey! I am looking forward to reading these works in their entirety. And I am excited to be able to say, "I know this talented writer!" I will see your name on the bestseller lists, I'm sure. =)

    1. Mrs. D, you made my day/week/month! That means so much to me--thank you. I owe a lot to you and Mr. D. Your wisdom and guidance provided a turning point in my writing, a transformation for which I'll be forever grateful! :)

  4. Aww, you did my tag!! *beams*

    Gah, these snippets are SO. GOOD. I sincerely hope you get published one day, because I would LOVE to read anything you've written! You're a talented writer, Tracey. <3

    1. And a very fun tag it was! :D

      Eeep, thank you, Madeline! I so appreciate hearing that, truly. <333

  5. Excellent snippet, as always! I especially loved those Glass Girl snippets, I hope we'll be able to see more of them soon!

    1. Oh thank you, Blue! ^_^ Glass Girl was a story I blitzed through one December, so it was a blast to write, but ended up with a number of plot holes. Maybe one day I'll have to share more of it here anyway. :)

  6. I love how in the ninth scene you never once say anything along the lines of "he turned into a beast", but you describe it to us so it feels like we're inside with him. It's a really good way of showing without telling.

    I've never been tagged before, but this comes in a good hour, as it seems to be a pretty fast blog post to do, and the semester's getting to that point where time is vanishing.

    1. Thanks, Sophia! That's one of the hardest writing "rules" to follow (show, not tell), so I really appreciate that you felt I succeeded there. :D

      I've tagged you for the first time? What an honor! Hope you have fun with it!

  7. Your writing is so beautiful and gripping!

  8. Wow, sis, I knew your writing was beautiful but this just proves again to me that it truly is gorgeous! ^.^ You really have a way with words!

    I think I get inspired by you when I write. But my writing has never been this good, just read my JH story and you'll know. There's probably loopholes and not a lot of character development... But I try, at least! ^.^

    1. Oh, Lost, thank you ever so much! That's so sweet of you to say. *bear hugs*

      Really? Wow! But SHUSH, YOUR WRITING IS SO GREAT, DON'T SAY IT ISN'T. Your story has a lot of spunk, from what I've read so far! That reminds me, I have quite a few chapters to catch up on... ;)