My work-in-progress: Tripping Stone


Days like today, when the day-job is kicking my ass and I find myself wanting to be any-damn-where at all but here, I like to dwell on my book. I'd love to say that I write, edit and progress during my lunch hour but I've only done that a hand full of times and I'm not here to bullshit you. I sit at a desk all day but it's mentally exhausting, so if I manage anything more productive than looking up writerly crap and pinning that shit, I consider myself good on the whole "adulting" thing for a few weeks. Shameful, I know.

Regardless, it's dawned on me that there's nothing currently on my site introducing the novel I'm working on, and that's just silly.

So this book is a shade lighter than what I've written in the past. I've done a lot of dark pieces and I'm not afraid of putting my characters through all manner of fucked up situations, but that didn't feel right for this project. Don't get me wrong, she doesn't make it out of this unscathed but you won't find much in this book that tests your gag reflex and there are plenty of lighthearted moments to break up the horror. Being honest, I'm a little concerned that the tone will lock me into a dark humor hole forever but this story has been eating at me for a few years now and I just don't feel like I'll be free until I get it on paper. For me, random ideas spawn characters with full lives in my head, assuming the idea was good enough, and none of them shut up until I've told their story. I think about them at night while trying to sleep, driving to and from work, eating breakfast, reading other books, whenever they decide to remind me that they don't fully exist until I flesh them out. My protagonist for this book, Nora, is a bossy bitch but I love her dearly. 

I wanted to highlight Nora's voice so I went with first person, past tense on this one. I have something against first person, present so you won't see that from me... ever. Not that it can't be done well, it just rarely is, and I find writing it feels a play-by-play and that saps all the fun out of it for me. My typical style is third-person omniscient. Because I get to be a god. Not even gonna try to make that one sound less sadistic. Unvarnished truth, ladies and gentlemen. I like being a puppet master. But Nora is just so damned fun and taking her story out of her hands would be a mistake. Her reality is so alien to most people that in order to get it, you really need to be in her head, for better and worse.  

So without anymore tooling about, here it is...

Tripping Stone: A Novel by Ivy Cain

A woman born with the ability to see past the first layer of our reality into the strange kaleidoscope of oddities beneath, struggles to live a boring life in a city where a nefarious force is sucking the souls out of her neighbors.

Thirty-four-year-old Nora Stone just wants to be normal. She wants to eat without her food attempting to chat, she’d like the walls to stop moving around and she’d love it if she didn’t have to see your soul. But since the universe doesn’t care about anybody else but itself, she’s had to become a master at pretending that the translucent beings hiding in the bodies of every living creature on earth just don’t exist.

But after witnessing the murder of a random pedestrian’s soul, which she calls an imp, and subsequently noticing that the murderer seems to be following her around, she’s forced to adapt to the new weirdness in her life to handle the situation before she loses her sanity or worse, the few people in the world she cares about. 

Current Status

I completed most of the rough draft in November of 2015. Maybe had I gotten off my ass, I'd have finished this thing last year but whatever. In 2016, I edited the shit out of it and I'm currently editing draft 3. I'm calling this my hole-filling draft. I don't outline before I start writing so after I get a presentable draft where the plot is where I want it (draft 2 in this case), I go back and fix the earlier stuff that no longer makes sense. It's a tedious process but I enjoy it. I printed out the manuscript and now I'm going through it with my trusty red pen. Some writer's I've talked to hate red pens but I find them rather comforting. They fix what's broken so growth is had. And it's one step closer to publication. I may feel differently about that once an actual, professional editor gets their hands on it but for now, the red pen makes me happy. It's bled across 1/3rd of the book so far and my goal is to complete the rest this month. 

So that's where we are for now, folks. Have a question about the book? Hit me up in the comments section.