Excerpt from Camp NaNo piece

I’m 11,213 words in on Day 6 and I’m typing away. Who knows if any of it will be good when I’m done – or even readable for that matter, but so far, it’s been a blast to write.

My young adult novel (aimed at junior-high to high school aged) is about Lillian Hayes, a nineteen-year-old college student who witnesses the murder of her boyfriend of seven years, Ben. She begins suffering from nightmares and ends up meeting a group of students on campus led by Lee Kyung-Sam who are developing a treatment for PTSD that uses Lucid Dreaming. Lillian takes part in their study and finds out that there are more to her dreams than meet the eye.

Here’s the first page – without any edits. It’s posted just as I wrote it down at midnight on July 1. I’ll start editing when I finish writing.


Chapter 1
“I dream of you to wake, would that I might Dream of you and not wake but slumber on” (Christina G. Rossetti).

There were only three minutes and thirty-seven seconds between when Lillian held her boyfriend’s hand on the couch and when he died in her arms.
Three minutes.
Thirty-seven seconds.

“I feel sorry for them,” Ben said, nodding toward the television screen. He sat back on the faded brown couch, his longs legs propped up on the coffee table. “You know, they haven’t won a game all season?”
Lillian glanced up from her book, the eraser end of the pencil between her teeth.
“No one comes here for the football team anyway,” she said, shrugging a shoulder and pushing her red hair behind her right ear.
“I know, but you have to feel sorry for those guys. They go all over the state to play and they always lose. Sucks,” he said, tossing back the rest of his beer. He considered the bottle for a minute. “You have any more of these?”
Lillian twisted the eraser around in her mouth, staring intently at the book in her lap.
“Earth to Lill,” Ben teased, tapping her on the head with a pillow.
“What? Oh, sorry,” she laughed. Ben always thought her smile made her eyes look greener than they already were. “What’d you ask me?”
“I asked if you had any more beer.”
“Maybe. I think Tamryn left one or two the last time she was over. You do have a test tomorrow, right?”
Ben shrugged.
“It’s not a big deal.”
“You know, it is, though. You have to pass this class. If you don’t, you’ll have to do another year here and your dad will disown you.” She narrowed her eyes at him in her attempt to be stern.
“Naw. He’ll just give me the speech. You know, the ‘you’ve got a good head on your shoulders, son, and you can succeed if you just apply yourself’ one.”
Lillian stifled a giggle. She’d known Ben’s dad, Art, almost as long as she’d known Ben and she could picture the way his mustache would twitch when he spoke to his son.
“He just wants the best for you,” she said, closing her book and putting it down on the table. The cool October breeze blew through the open window, and a mini blind vibrated in the wind. She got up to close the window. “Quit looking at my butt,” she teased.
“Can’t help it. Finest butt in the state,” he said, reaching out to plant a slap on her backside. He pulled her down onto the couch and kissed her. His hands wrapped in her red hair and his lips found her neck.
“Okay, okay,” she said, pushing away. “I can’t tonight. I have too much to do.”
Ben’s tongue flicked along her earlobe and he exhaled. She jumped up, slapping him in the arm.
“Ow!” he yelled, holding his arm.
“That didn’t hurt.”
“Oh, man. I think I’ll have to sit out the tournament on Saturday.” Ben wound his arm around a couple of times. “Seriously. There may be ligament damage.”
“You’re ridiculous,” she said, getting up and going into the bathroom.


About Adria Waters

I am a mom, wife, teacher, and a writer. Somehow I'm trying to find time for all of those things!
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