Tag Archives: Glassmakers trilogy

Arguing about a mirror for #WIPpet Wednesday

I am slowly getting back into the swing of things again. Not only did I do a lot of marketing organization and research last week, finish my weekly page counts on the translation, and makes lots of jam and jelly out of a small percentage of our tons of apples (as well as relish and pickles from zucchini and cucumber), I also got 2700 words written. 🙂 That’s not where I want to be yet, but given that it is fall, and there’s lots to do in the garden, I’m inclined to cut myself some slack and be happy with the progress.

I’m already way past the projected word count on Shards of Glass, and while the end is in sight, I don’t think it’s going to come in at under 40,000 words. At the same time, I’m itching to get back to other projects. There may be some jumping back and forth in my near future. *g*

With that brief update, let us move on to an excerpt from Facets of Glass for WIPpet Wednesday. This snippet comes immediately following the one I gave you two weeks ago. The Dowager Princess has just learned the name of Chiara’s place of work in Prague with the help of the magic mirror. 16 sentences this week for the 16th, plus 2 to end the scene:

“If you have enough information, perhaps it would be possible for me to take the looking glass back to my own establishment?” the witch suggested. “You can still consult it at any time, Your Grace.”
The Dowager Princess gazed at the witch, while the image of the narrow street in Prague slowly faded in the smooth glass of the mirror. “As I told you when you first brought it,” she said slowly, “I do not want anyone else accessing its magic at this time.”
“I could make it available only to you.”
What was it that Vanna did not understand about her request to keep the mirror here in the Foscari palace?
“Is my steward not paying you enough?” Zilia asked.
Vanna glanced at the mirror. “It is not that. I am worried that something may happen … to it.”
Good, so their mutual distrust of each other was established. But it would be foolish of Zilia to allow the mirror to be damaged — she was still in need of its services. “Rest assured that I will see to it that nothing becomes of your mirror, Vanna.”
“Very well, Your Grace.”
Perhaps this was no more than an attempt by the witch to wring more money from her for keeping the mirror in her rooms? Well, Zilia was feeling pleased with what the mirror had shown them, she would afford to be generous. “I will instruct my steward to pay you more as long as this mirror remains with me. I hope that meets with your approval.”
“Thank you, Your Grace.”

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.

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Making a connection for #WIPpet Wednesday

I’m finally getting some writing done again, which is making me feel much happier about myself. I really can’t allow things to get in the way of my writing as much as I have recently — it makes me irritable. 🙂

The ideas were tumbling in like crazy the last couple of days, and The Glassmakers Trilogy is moving forward again. Today I return to the second book, Facets of Glass, and our reluctant hero Gaetano, who has just learned from the Dowager Princess that he is going to be sent to Bohemia to have a glass coffin made for Minerva. This is the beginning of the scene following, 8 short paragraphs for the 8th of the month:

When Gaetano returned to the Palazzo Dragoni the next day, Princess Anastasia was standing over the still form of her sister, her eyes red-rimmed from weeping.
Gaetano joined her, silent, and gazed down at Minerva, feeling for some strange reason as if his heart were breaking. Which made no sense. His only direct contact with her was as a servant, and the only time she had ever conversed with him was when he brought her the gift from Dowager Princess Zilia.
The scene he had briefly experienced through her eyes when he found the apple.
“Are you ready to return to Venice, Your Grace?” he asked softly.
And then his vision went black. Anastasia’s words reached him as if out of a fog. “Not just yet, please.”
He felt himself wanting to rise, wanting to cry out, but he couldn’t move, couldn’t talk, couldn’t open his eyes. He was frozen in place, aware of the people around him, unable to communicate with them.
Except for one.
Suddenly his vision returned, and he drew a ragged breath, staring down at the motionless form of Minerva. Was he imagining things, or was he somehow enchanted too? The feeling of being trapped in his own body had been so strong, it bordered on panic.

Maxfield Parrish, Snow White

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.

Second quarter accounting, and a glass coffin for #wippet Wednesday

My final update for this quarter will be mercifully brief: I pretty much failed on all fronts. I did not keep up on my word counts, either writing or translation. I did not wrap up my indie author series, although I am now at a word count above what I was originally shooting for. I did not finish Shards of Glass or revise my short story “Pool of Souls” to start sending it out.

On the other hand, I did submit 10 short stories to traditional markets this round, the most I have managed in one quarter in years. Perhaps I can make it the basis of a new, better submission practice (not in the Shades of Grey sense …)

I also wrote the report for the most recent Villa Diodati workshop. And while my list of unfinished publishing goals remains much too long, I am getting nearer to a collection of my previously published short stories set in Oregon, where I grew up. The Scrivener file is nearly good to go, and here is the cover I put together the other day:

oregon elsewise

The photo was taken on the trip home in April, a big part of the reason I’m so far behind on all my goals. Do let me know what you think of the cover!

My update thankfully out of the way, we can move on to WIPpet Wednesday! That’s another thing I’ve been very bad about this round, so far behind on everything as I’ve been. Two weeks ago, I left you in Facets of Glass with Gaetano lying to the Dowager Princess. Today I give you 6 paragraphs from where we left off, 2+4 for the day of the month — and a brief reprieve for our hero:

She waved one graceful hand in the air. “It is no matter. You did your best. I have another task for you now. Minerva sleeps as if dead, showing no signs of waking, although she still breathes. The prince would like a glass coffin made for his sister-in-law, in which all can see her until that time she should wake.”
What a strangely morbid thing to do. Gaetano doubted if the prince had anything to do with this particular plan — if nothing else, he probably lacked the creativity to come up with such an idea.
“As the glassmakers of Murano specialize in fine, delicate glass, we have decided to commission a glassworks shop in Bohemia with the job,” the dowager princess continued. “They are much better in creating the hardier glass necessary. I have heard that many of their famous glassmakers are gem cutters as well as glass cutters.”
Gaetano nodded dutifully. “As you say, Your Grace.”
“Once we have worked out the details, we would like you to travel to Bohemia to an appropriate glassmaker there.”
“Alone, Your Grace? Or with a detail of Foscari House Guards?”

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.

The search for the apple for WIPpet Wednesday

In the last week and a half, I have managed to delete about 3000 words in notes and unnecessary scenes from Shards of Glass. Once I finished that task, I started added new (and hopefully better!) words this week. After having been up to 16,000 words, Shards is now coming in at 14,100. Progress is once again being made!

Of course, most of my time is being spent on the translation. I still want to devote a post to that relating to our recent trip, but I haven’t gotten around to it yet. Maybe sometime in the next week or so, now that I seem to be settling into a more regular routine again.

On to WIPpet Wednesday! My math today: 2+7 for the day of the month to give you 9 paragraphs from Facets of Glass. Last week, we left our intrepid reluctant hero trying to figure out how he is going to find a glass apple with a room full of people nearby. In order to not bore you too much, I’m skipping some of the search scene. And here’s a nice photo from a palazzo on Murano to give you an idea what the room where he is searching might look like:

Gaetano marched purposefully around the chest of drawers to stand at attention at the opposite corner, nothing more than a soldier doing his duty. And no one noticed the oddity of his action.
From this corner, he would be able to sweep his foot both to the side and in the front of the cabinet. At the next opportunity, he tested the area in front.
Still nothing.
Several teary guests left the room where Minerva lay, breathing but lifeless, and exited through the double doors of the audience chamber. No one gave him a second glance. He was as much a piece of furniture as the commode and the cabinet between which he stood.
Once the group was gone and the audience chamber quiet again, Gaetano gently swept his booted foot backwards along the side.
And felt something. There was a tinkling on the floor behind him. But before he could turn to inspect the object, more guests entered the audience chamber. As soon as they disappeared through the side door, he glanced backwards.
An object red and round rested next to the wall.
There was still no activity in the audience chamber. He bent over as if to adjust his bootstrap and reached behind to grab the apple. Something sharp cut through his leather glove, pricking the skin beneath. When he examined the apple, he saw that it had lost its stem and leaves in its roll across the floor. It was the broken shard left of the stem that had pierced the glove of his right hand and the skin of his finger. But the apple itself was still whole.
Then for a moment, the image of the apple in his hands swam and blurred. When it came back into focus again, he seemed to be seeing the apple when it still had it’s leaves and stem intact — and he felt a distinct foreboding at the sight. Stranger still, beyond the apple he saw himself, dressed as a footman and looking mildly embarrassed. It was as if he were viewing the incident of the day before through Minerva’s eyes.

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.

Back to Facets of Glass for #WIPpet Wednesday

I’m slowly getting back into a productive routine again after the disruption of travel and then recovering from jet lag. The translation is going well, and I’ve also gotten back to writing and marketing, organizing several new promos for my books in recent and upcoming weeks. I’m also submitting short stories to traditional markets again — something I have to do more of.

Quantifying the writing, on the other hand, is a bit more difficult. I’ve done a lot of work in hard copy, trying to map out the character arcs for Chiara, Gaetano, Vanna and the Dowager Princess in Facets of Glass and Shards of Glass. I’m very happy with the results and feel like I have a much better handle on where things should be going from here on out. On the other hand, one of the results was that I did a lot of radical weeding in the present manuscript, cutting over 1400 words. So my progress for the past week comes out to -1400. 🙂

After that cheerful news, let us continue on to WIPpet Wednesday! Today I am returning to Facets of Glass, and the place in the story where I was before I went on vacation. Gaetano has just been ordered back to Murano by the Dowager Princess to find the glass apple. I’m giving you 5 paragraphs for the 5th month:

Minerva had been laid out on a couch in a room adjacent to the audience chamber in the Dragoni family palazzo. At least that. It was going to be difficult enough as it was for Gaetano to find an opportunity to crawl around on the floor in search of a glass apple. But if all the people crowding around Minerva had been in the audience chamber rather than the room next door, it would have been impossible.
When they entered the alcove where Minerva lay as if sleeping, Anastasia pushed through the crowds and knelt at her sister’s side, tears streaming down her face, making grooves in the fashionable powder applied by her maids.
Standing at attention in the door frame, Gaetano stared at the scene. Whatever it was Minerva had done to invoke the wrath of the dowager princess, she did not deserve to be made a living corpse.
He turned away from the alcove and examined the larger room. In his mind’s eye, he could see the exact spot where Minerva had fallen, and where her outstretched arm, hand empty, had lain on the marble.
He gazed in the direction her arm had pointed. There stood a tall cabinet with short legs under which the apple could have rolled. Only how was he going to get a chance to look underneath it with all the people in these rooms?

Once Upon a Time, Ann Macbeth

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.

One of these days I will get back to posting regularly — once all the other stuff in my life has gotten more back to normal! Hope everyone is having a grand old time in the blogosphere in the meantime. 🙂

Shards of Glass for #WIPpet Wednesday, and a request for feedback on the cover

Hi again, everyone! Long time, no read. 🙂

While I was off visiting relatives, assisting with deck building, doing garden work in the garden of my daughter’s new house, and eating fresh crab, the nearly final cover of the third Glassmakers book arrived in my inbox.

Shards of Glass cover

I’m pretty happy with how it looks, but my cover designer agreed to allow me to run it past my readers on my blog and Facebook before finalizing it. Unfortunately, I haven’t had a lot of time for blogging in the last few weeks, and am only now getting around to it now that we are back in Germany. So what do you guys think? The basic design will stay the same, but if you have any suggestions for tweaking, I would be happy to hear them!

Since I’m running the cover for the last book in the trilogy by y’all, I thought I would jump forward in fictional time and give you a first excerpt from Shards of Glass for my return to WIPpet Wednesday. Math: 6 short paragraphs for the sixth day of the month:

Dowager Princess Zilia of House Foscari was in a bad mood. Her morning chocolate tasted like dust, even though she was sure the cook had prepared it exactly to her liking, just as he always did.
No, it was not the cook’s fault that nothing could please her this morning — even though the sun shone bright through the tall arched windows and the reports she was reading were full of positive news regarding increases in Venetian exports of glass, silk and spices. All of which would mean sorely needed tax revenues for the ruling families of Venice.
Unfortunately, Zilia couldn’t enjoy it — not the chocolate, not the sun, not the news. All she could think about was her recent defeat. Not only had her plan to bring the traitorous glassmakers back to Venice been foiled, the magic mirror that had found them had been stolen.
Zilia was not used to being crossed. She was used to having her every wish fulfilled.
She put aside the reports and rose. Perhaps she needed to take a day off from her duties as mother of the most powerful prince in Venice. She would go to Lido, spend the day in the Foscari villa there, far from responsibilities and disappointments.
The Dowager Princess threw open the doors to her retiring room — and noticed that her favorite, Gaetano, was not one of the guards standing at attention on either side of her sanctuary. His absence had escaped her when she came down from her bedchamber, enshrouded in her bad mood.

Rough stuff still, very much first draft — any and all comments welcome!

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.

As to progress, maybe I should offer you this:


Deck underway

And this:

Deck completed
Deck completed

That was our big accomplishment on our vacation. I didn’t actually work that much on the deck for my daughter’s new house, but I did do a lot of gardening, dirt shoveling, ugly shrub extinction, and planting while we were there.

Other than that, I was driving up and down the west coast between Eugene and Seattle and visiting relatives and friends I only rarely see. I did a little bit of translation, a little bit of brainstorming, and even less writing. But over the years, I have come to believe that it is okay to take a vacation from writing. I write 5 days a week on a regular basis, usually more, and I manage consistent word counts that I compensate for on days when the writing doesn’t go as well. Given those circumstances, I think I deserve a vacation now and then. 🙂

I may still blog in more detail about our trip, given time and opportunity, but I’m not promising anything. The incident with the lost camera would definitely deserve a post, if I can manage it! Not to mention my husband’s collision with a chainsaw …

Hope everyone has been doing great while I’ve been mostly absent. 🙂

Second quarter goals

I got a bit sidetracked yesterday by the hijacking of the Hugo Awards for SFF, which I wrote about in my last post. Now that is off my chest, I can get back to business: my goals for the next quarter.

For the next couple of weeks, this list and my blog will be largely on hiatus while I try to catch up with relatives on another continent.

Shards of Glass Writing:

– Write an average of 2500 words a week.

– Finish Shards of Glass (that btw is not the final cover, so any and all comments and suggestions welcome!)

– Write 3 new short stories

– Revise “Pool of Souls” and send it out

Blog:

– Write a report on Villa Diodati 14

– Wrap up the series “Starting out as an indie author”

– Update my book page here and on my web page, ruthnestvold.com

Writing business:

– 500 words a day of translation

– Schedule more promotions for my books

– List books with Babelcube & Noisetrade

– Publish “Starting Out as an Indie Author” as ebook

– Publish “The Shadow Artist” as ebook

– Put together collection of my writing articles with Jay Lake

– Put together collection of fantasy stories with Jay

– Write newsletter update for my subscribers

– Find more reviewers for CIAM and Island of Glass

– Start splitting up Shadow of Stone like I did Yseult

Wishing everyone a successful Round of Words!

Results of recent promos, and more with Minerva for #WIPpet Wednesday

I’m exhausted. I’ve been running around with granddaughters all day today, and I am definitely noticing in my bones that I’m not as young as I used to be. They have Fasching vacation right now (the German Mardi Gras), and we have them overnight. I took them to the first really huge mall here, which opened in November, making good on a Christmas present I gave them. My feet hurt.

I wasn’t really feeling like posting as a result, but I didn’t post last week either — also because of various stuff taking up my time — but I don’t want to get that much out of the habit. Besides, I have some pretty good results from recent promos to report. Not to forget the words, and WIPpet Wednesday. 🙂

My word count dropped down again last week, but it makes a lot of sense to me. Much of what I was doing was brainstorming the next book in the Glassmakers trilogy. In my experience, the real word counts come when the book is pretty much worked out in my mind, and all I have to do is fill in the details. That is not the case with Shards of Glass. I have the general idea, but the specific plot points are vague. As a result, I only got 4300 words done last week, compared to 6200 the week before, and 8000 the week before that.

Another thing that has put a crimp in the word counts has been some renewed tests of marketing strategies — which also require thought and time. At least I can announce that this weeks’ promos have been going amazingly well.

1) Yesterday, Bknights (Fiverr) promoted the free first book of Yseult, Two Women, from my new, episodic version of my monster novel. Since then, Yseult I has gotten over 300 downloads, when it usually gets 10 – 15 a day. There have been 4 new sales of parts 2 & 3, only one day later, which nearly earn out the whopping $5.50 I paid for the Fiverr ad to give the series a boost.

The ranking for Yseult, Two Women is now as follows:

Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #911 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
#3 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Arthurian
#4 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Historical

2) I did a 3 day free run of Looking Through Lace this week, ending today, using only the free sites listed on my updated blog post on where to promote a free run. LTL has had over 700 downloads on Amazon.com alone as a result, and Book 2, Beyond the Waters of the World, has also had a couple more sales than usual. Here the present ranking of LTL:

Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #490 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
#1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > First Contact
#1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > Space Exploration

Of course, all this proves for certain right now is that I know how to give a lot of books away without spending too much money. *g* But those rankings provide visibility, and visibility is one of the main things that sell books. And one day after the ad, I have nearly nearly out the cost through sales of subsequent books in the “series.” *g*

With that update, on to WIPpet Wednesday! The end of January, I finished the rough draft of Facets of Glass, Book 2 of the Glassmakers trilogy. But right now, I have FoG and Shards of Glass (Book 3) in one Scrivener file, so that I can skip back and forth when I notice that an idea I come up with for SoG requires some tweaking in FoG. So I will probably continue to post from Facets of Glass until I actually publish it. 🙂

This snippet comes directly after the one I gave you two weeks ago. 7 paragraphs, 8 – 1 from the day of the month:

He tossed the wine she’d given him back as if it were water and put the glass on the tray Guilia held. Minerva nodded, and the serving girl turned and left with the empty glass.
“Thank you for the refreshment, Signorina,” the footman said. “Would you care to take your gift now so that I may return to my employer?”
She grimaced. “You are right to admonish me. I should not tease so. Everyone tells me that, yet I cannot seem to resist.” She accepted the gift box and opened the lid.
When she saw the glass apple nestled in the wood shavings, she almost dropped the box. One hand went to the heart pendant she wore on a chain around her neck — the work of her step-sister, Chiara. Was this glass apple also from Chiara’s hand? If so, what did it mean? Chiara would never send anything to Minerva directly, it would be too much of a risk.
Carefully, Minerva lifted the apple out and laid the box aside. The leaves, the stem, the fading of the glass from red to green, all showed great artistry and attention to detail. She had seen many examples of Chiara’s work since they became step-sisters, and she liked to imagine she would recognize it anywhere.
Then she turned the apple over and saw the wormhole — and she was sure. This was from Chiara’s hand.
She clutched the apple to her chest and looked up at the man who had brought the gift, suddenly realizing where she had seen him before. “You! What are you doing dressed like a footman and bringing this to me? You are one of the personal guards of Dowager Princess Zilia!”

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.

Arguing with a magic mirror for #WIPpet Wednesday

Last week, I got a surprising amount of wordage written, despite all the preparations for the launch of Island of Glass. (Thank you all very much for your help!) Anyway, the book is now published, I’ve gotten back into the swing of things regarding marketing my fiction, and last week I added a total of 6,000 words to various projects.

I’m still undecided whether I will try to do Nano this year. I have so many projects going right now, I don’t really want to abandon any of them. Well, I still have a couple of days to decide.

I also wanted to mention that with Halloween coming up, I’m going to be giving away my short story, “Misty and the Magic Pumpkin Knife” from Oct. 30 – Nov. 3 FREE on Amazon. So if you don’t have it yet, grab yourself a copy!

After that brief update, let’s continue on to WIPpet Wednesday. Dowager Princess Zilia has just dismissed the witch Vanna and is very irritated with the magic mirror for not performing for her as it did for the witch. For Oct. 29, I give you 7 short paragraphs for the day of the month (9-2):

She put the precious apple on a side table and drew a deep breath, then another, and another. She had the magic mirror, and she could call on Vanna’s services at any time. She did not need to control the magic herself — she had a monopoly on the purveyors of magic in Venice.
The only person she could truly trust was herself. She much preferred to have the reins in her own hands.
On the other hand, while a witch or an alchemist was perfectly capable of deception, what was the case with a magic mirror? Zilia had seen the mirror’s answers with her own eyes, after all, and they were quite clear.
The dowager princess turned back to the mirror. “So, Mirror, can you lie like the rest of us? Or must you always tell the truth?”
The mirror remained silent, the images it reflected unchanging.
Zilia began to pace her retiring room, forcing the mirror to follow her lead. “Perhaps I should return you to Vanna after all,” she said to the mirror. “Seeing as you are useless to me without her. But no, it is as I told the witch, I do not want anyone else accessing your magic at this time.”
The mirror followed her movements patiently.


Another mirror, just because it’s so pretty

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.

Some good news, and more from Facets of Glass for #WIPpet Wednesday

As those who follow this blog know, I had a fairly successful free run for my time travel novel Chameleon in a Mirror last week. Nonetheless, my summary of the results were a bit on the skeptical side, and I predicted that CIAM would soon drop out of the Top 100 lists that it managed to get into again once it went back to paid.

I am happy to announce that I was wrong — so far. *g* Since Sunday, it has been slowly climbing in the rankings rather than falling. Here is where it was when I checked before starting this blog post:

Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,894 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
#28 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > New Adult & College
#52 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Historical Fiction > Fantasy
#89 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Historical

I have some ideas as to why that is happening, but I would like to save my tentative conclusions for a dedicated marketing post in my blog series “Starting out as an indie author.”

While the upside of the marketing is actual daily sales again for a change, the downside is less time for writing. I’m still hopeful that I’ll make my 4,000 words for the week, though. My total for Monday and Tuesday was 1400, which would put me still on target.

The Mirror by Frank Dicksee, 1896
The Mirror by Frank Dicksee, 1896

We have another mirror this week for WIPpet Wednesday. I’m still posting from Facets of Glass, the 2nd book in The Glassmakers series after Island of Glass. Dowager Princess Zilia of House Foscari in the Empire of Venice just dismissed the witch in last week’s installment and is now alone with the magic mirror. Here for the 22nd are 22 lines from the manuscript:

When the ornate double doors in shades of cream and pale blue closed behind the witch, Zilia turned to the mirror impatiently. What could be so magic about a white-haired witch? There had to be something in the mirror itself, and if there was, she would be able to call on it too.
Glass apple in hand, she turned back to the mirror, which now only reflected an image of herself in her retiring room — her favorite place in the world, her sanctuary.
“Magic mirror, please show to me,
“Where the maker of this apple might be.”
Nothing happened. The mirror stubbornly continued to display no more than her own reflection. Of course, the dowager princess had no complaints regarding her appearance; the heavy rust and gold brocade of her gown glittered with the sunlight coming in from the high windows, highlights in her hair complimented the colors in her gown, and the skin of her face displayed next to no wrinkles. She was often complimented on how young she looked, and she was quite sure that had she wanted to, she could easily have married again.
But while her own reflection was pleasing, the unresponsiveness of the mirror was not.
She tried again, taking a step forward and holding the apple closer to the mirror. “Magic mirror, please show to me,
“Where the maker of this apple might be.”
Still nothing! Zilia was sorely tempted to hurl the glass apple into the farthest corner of her retiring room, and fling the mirror to the floor for good measure. She did not like being shown up. She was one of the most powerful women in one of the most powerful empires in Europe. A mere mirror not obeying her command felt like an affront.

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.