RSW Fifth Update


Ready. Set. Write! is a summer-long initiative hosted by Alison MillerKaty UppermanElodie NowodazkijJaime Morrow, and Erin Funk. Each week, participants post brief updates under five headings.

  • How I did on last week’s goal(s)

I wrote 8,000 words and am almost six chapters into Part II.

  • My goal(s) for this week

Write a few more chapters of Part II.

  • A favorite line from my story OR a word or phrase that sums up what I wrote/revised

He was longing to dance with some of these beautiful women, but nevertheless hung back.  Such worldly pleasures were for other people, normal people.  If he wanted to live as long as possible, he’d have to remain the eternal outsider looking in, taunted by being so close to all the things normal people took for granted.  He knew very well what normal was supposed to look like, and his heart ached to have a sweetheart and children, but it just wasn’t appropriate.

  • The biggest challenge I faced this week

Having to depict Grand Duke Mikhail, who was probably one of the nicest, humblest members of the Imperial Family, as increasingly autocratic and even more anti-Semitic than his father, Aleksandr III. He remains a kind, loving person to his immediate family, but he definitely isn’t taking any chances after the dynasty so narrowly survived. He’s also furious to learn of the latest schemes of the Vladimirovichi and their friends, and won’t tolerate any insults to his morganatic marriage, suggestions he plans to seize the throne for himself, or threats to his nephew’s succession rights.

In real life, Mikhail really did care deeply about Aleksey’s succession rights, so much so he called in a lawyer after his brother dumped the throne in his lap without warning. He definitely didn’t want to wrest the throne from his own nephew, and had expected he’d become the Regent. I’ll have to write a post about why Nicholas II’s abdication was illegal under House Laws, and how he threw both his son and brother under the bus.

  • Something I love about my WIP

I love how it’s a bit of a hybrid narrative, similar to my original idea of 1996. The majority is the traditional third-person omniscient, but there are a fair number of newspaper stories and letters scattered throughout. Though my POV will always be third-person omniscient, I love writing first-person interludes and fictional newspaper stories like this. It’s also fun to come up with the headlines, like Guess Who Was Responsible (Again)? (Sorry, I can’t figure out how to do small caps in HTML.)


If anyone wants to come back on Friday, there’ll be an In Memoriam post for the 97th anniversary of the Imperial Family’s murders, both in Yekaterinburg (17 July) and Alapayevsk (18 July). It’s little more than their names, photographs, and birthdates, each one representing a human being whose life was stolen far too soon. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any photographs of Fyodor Remez, Grand Duke Sergey’s secretary, the only one of the 19 who hasn’t been made a saint.


7 thoughts on “RSW Fifth Update

  1. Have to catch up with online-life myself, but saw this, and even though I haven’t written my own post, wanted to reply…

    Mostly because of the HTML thingie…. There isn’t exactly a small-caps option in HMTL, but you could use multiple ‘span’ tags to adjust the font size and then use regular capital letters of a slightly smaller size in as the ‘lowercase’ letters.

    I also like what you write about Mikhail. The evolution of a beloved character into something darker and less sympathetic can be sad, but necessary. I have a few characters like that…

    Hope you’re feeling better. We missed you at Denny’s last night.


  2. Congrats on being almost six chapters in on part two of your WIP! That’s awesome progress! Hope you have another great writing week, because 8k is truly impressive!


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