Laughing at Myself

I used to be embarrassed when my writing pleased me (toe-curling, laugh-out-loud delight seems rather presumptuous– sort of like describing your children’s wonderfulness).

“Isn’t it amazing,” my mom gushed last summer, “We have only beautiful and brilliant people in this family.”

My dad placidly observed, “I’m sure the warthog says the same thing.”

Today I fixed something in Linnea’s Journey, re-read it and laughed aloud, clapping my hands.  At once I cringed, even in the privacy of my writing nook.  Then I remembered something my one editor-encounter left me with: “Your writing should move you.  If it doesn’t excite or entertain you who are this close, how can you expect it to move anyone else?”

So I enjoyed the feeling.

Here’s something from my story that made me laugh (possibly in an inside-joke way), though not the passage I described above– that was a chunk that makes no sense out of context.  This one has at least a chance.

In a heartbeat, Tykone was out of his chair, knife above his head. Kennett waited for the rush ignoring the [house mother’s] scream. Extending his left hand Kennett kept the knife from meeting his chest, but did nothing else to slow the smaller man’s attack. It was mere seconds till two men were pulling Tykone away and one in a blue vest was pushing Kennett back to the wall.

“Captain,” Kennett barked, “If a man hits the speaker instead of denying what he said, isn’t it safe to assume the statement was true?” [exchange has happened twice before between them, both times initiated by Tykone]

Tykone looked confused, and then seemed to be trying to keep himself from smiling.

“If the man it spoke of will hit before speaking, I don’t think it is safe to assume anything.”

The men holding Tykone released him and Kennett opened his hand, palm up. Stepping forward, Tykone clasped his prince’s wrist.

“I will hear what my lord has to say.” He looked into Kennett’s obsidian eyes. “I can always kill you later if I need to.”

Kennett studied Tykone in his turn. “If you feel the need, you are welcome to try. Though you should expect resistance.”

“Well!” said the blue-vested Kjell cheerfully, “Now that’s settled and we’re all here.  How about you tell us why in the whole forest we should trust you.”

Kennett crossed his arms and leaned back against the wall.

“Is it expected for a prince to justify himself to his subjects?”

“It is if he wishes for their love.”

…[names you don’t know from this excerpt along with protestations of confusion and innocence]…

[Kennett] felt the heat rise in his chest. “Any who prevent me from pursuing my bride and ensuring her safety will shortly find themselves either dead or very, very uncomfortable.”

This is one sort of exchange that makes me giggle.

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