NaNoWriMo 2015- The Prolonged Afterlife of Rachel Morrison

This month, I will endeavor to take up the NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) challenge!  My goal is 20,000 words- though it is a flexible and relaxed goal.  

I have inaugurated NaNoWriMo 2015 with the first ‘scene’ of my novel The Prolonged Afterlife of Rachel Morrison.

Part 1: Blanche

“I have to admit, I love to be waited on…” 

-Tennessee Williams

A Streetcar Named Desire

She possessed every staple of a ‘youngest child’ in abundance.  From her boisterous manners, to her practiced smile, perfected only by large periods of her education devoted only to the contortion of those specific facial muscles, it was obviously obvious that a spotlight (one all too religiously nourished) was an everyday accessory- accompanied, of course, by extravagant jewelry that always seemed slightly too formal for the occasions on which she wore them.

She grew up in the cotton-field filled South, on an estate-like property that hadn’t changed since its days as a plantation.  I suppose it was only fitting that she liked to consider herself a modern Scarlett O’Hara; a fantasy that was happily funded and encouraged by her family, who had more than the necessary to support her.  Although, as I’m sure you’ll discover later, financial support is, most definitely a beneficial way to be loved though, standing on its own, does not at all substitute compassion when compassion is needed.

A more apt comparison of our temporary protagonist would be that of Tennessee Williams’ character Blanche, after whom she was named.  The fictitious Blanche was Stella’s audacious older sister in A Streetcar Named Desire.  Our heroine’s mother had never actually read the play.  She had instead heard of it from the other local socialites.  It was from their broken information that she learned of Williams’ Blanche; a dashing heiress turned school teacher, all the while managing to epitomize a traditional Southern Belle.  That was not the actual truth.  Hopefully it’s not wrong to assume that had Blanche’s mother known what her aristocratic friends had failed to understand and communicate (the character was drowning in financial ruin, budding alcoholism, and a terrible scandal surrounding a love affair with a student), she would not have so eagerly bestowed such a name on her daughter.

Blanche Conrade.  This was the girl who got Rachel’s heart.  It is an interesting notion that despite all the wealth one can possess, it does very little in the way of diseases, which was exactly what Blanche suffered from.  Ironically, it was her heart that failed her, even though she had no trouble securing the hearts of all those around her.  Even then, the details of her ailment were quickly concealed.  In fact, it was months before her family would even admit anything was wrong.

When word did spread (with the help of a hired maid that was immediately dismissed and sanctioned by the Conrade legal team), any actual fact in the story was rendered useless and futile amongst the collected uproar that travelled through every street in support for the Southern-bred gem.

“Did you hear?  Blanche Conrade is sick!”

“Yes!  I’ve heard it’s fatal!  The poor angel!”

To keep updated on my progress, click on the links below, or check back here!



Please leaving any fitting feedback on how I can improve my writing and this novel, in the comments below!


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