Well, I’m still feeling pretty happy about my writing output yesterday. I’m currently at 7,315 words and 8,335 is the goal for today. Actually, I’d like to get to around 8,900 to stay ahead of pace, but we’ll see. For the first time in my life, I feel as if I may indeed be able to write a novel.
Finally, here is today’s excerpt. In this part of the story, Art has left Goldenrod’s cottage, even though he was warned no to. He is investigating some lights he saw in the distance and is approaching them. Again this is a rough draft.
Art enjoyed nothing more than trying to knock over a stack of milk bottles with a baseball, or trying to sink a basketball through a deceptively small hoop, all the while bantering with the man working the game. Art never went home from the fair with less than three jumbo sized stuffed animals. If only he had a girlfriend to go give them to.
It was easier when he was a little kid. Art would trade banter with the Carny just enough for him to cross the line. Then Art would turn on the water works, which usually resulted in if not a free stuffed animal, at least a free game. A few times Art found himself banned for the week from Carny row, especially since he’s gotten taller. He’d always be back the next year, though, and so were the Carnies.
This particular fair didn’t seem to have any farm animals and had no parking lot that Art could see. From the distance he was at, Art couldn’t tell if there were any games. He would have to get a closer look.
This part is when he’s gained entrance into the fair and is trying to decide on a game:
The prizes here were much more magnificent, though. The prizes here were also small bears and elephants and tigers, only these appeared to really be alive. The game that appealed to Art the most, however, was one in which you had to land a tiny ring on a sword. The man running the game promised all who would listen that if you were able to ring a sword, you could keep it. Art watched the people come and go from this game, but unlike the others, no one ever won.
After some time, Art decided to give it a try. He had always wanted a sword, and he figured this was as good a time as any, even if his parents wouldn’t let him keep it when he eventually got home, and yes he was going to eventually get home.
“You think you can do this?” laughed the Carny as Art approached the booth. Several of the onlookers joined in his laughter.
“These people must all be cross-eyed,” answered Art, “because I’ve never seen a game simpler.”
This seemed to have struck a nerve with the man, because his smile quickly went away. He pointed at the table and said, “Payment?”
“Payment?” answered Art. “You should be paying me to play If you do need a payment, though, here it is. My name is Arthur King.”
The Carny’s smile returned. He cocked his head to the side and said, “It’s usually one ring per play, but seeing as you are such a big shot, I’ll give you three. It’s only fair.”
Art took the rings from him and said, “I’ll only need one.”
Art took a deep breath and surveyed his possible targets, and prizes. There were several nice looking swords, some big, some tiny, but one average sized sword, in the middle of several of the huge swords, seemed to sparkle when Art looked at it. That was the one he was going to win.
Art took his first ring, the blue one, and flung it underhand at the sword. It bounced weakly off the top of it, not at all close to ringing it. All of the onlookers laughed, except for the Carny. Art noticed him shuffle nervously.
“I’ll tell you what. I’ll give you one of these swords,” the man said pointing to one of the largest swords of the group. “You clearly aren’t any good at this game and I feel sorry for you.”
The crowd gasped.
Art knew a scam when he saw it. There was something of value in the sword he was aiming for, something the Carny desperately did not want to lose. Art had gotten closer to the sword than he thought.
“I think I’ll keep playing,” Art answered. “I don’t want your help.”
The crowd gasped again, with several of the men yelling, “I’ll take it!”
Art’s second ring was thrown perfectly. It spun around the hilt of the sword several times, finally spinning itself off the sword. Art had never seen anything like it in his life. He was sure he was going to get the sword.
“Ha,” said the Carny, his voice cracking. “Not even close.” As he said this he began to take down his signs, reading himself to close his booth, though it seemed it was long before closing time at the fair.
Art was good at figuring out the tricks of fair games, but this one confused him. Maybe it was impossible to win this sword.
Art twirled his final ring, the red one, in his sweaty hand, trying to picture it landing on the sword, hoping some strategy would come to him. The more he saw the Carny shift nervously, the more He wanted that sword. Finally, Art closed his eyes and flung the ring, picturing it bouncing off one or two of the larger swords and onto HIS sword. That is what happened.