NaNoWriMo: first two days

18,000 thousand words…it’s flowing!

And as they travelled, sitting on the back of the rumbling wagon with her sketchbook on her knee, she drew.

She drew the birds, soaring above, and the Glider whenever it came over. They were almost simple; the red-banded hawk of so many days ago seemed like a fond memory as she feathered the raptor sitting on a rocky spire ahead, finishing its unfortunate lunch. They were familiar, old friends, their beauty apparent in every line that she drew.

She sketched the tiny desert lizards, with their glittering eyes and darting movements. In the mornings when it was cold, they were sleepy and easy to draw. It was the daytime ones that had soaked up the heat of the sun that she loved; the flashes of their tails and vanishing tricks amongst the rocks by the side of the road. One moment there would be dozens, and then none as the wagon rumbled on towards them.

She drew the people, too. The changeable Ger, sullen one moment and lively the next, uncertain of what he wanted to do or who he wanted to be. Alen was a good subject, sitting on the front of the wagon with the tiller in his hands and the pedals under his feet. He’d amiably stay still for long periods, letting her practice. Sente was harder; she often raced the wagons, jumping on and off, unable to stay in one place for long with her passion for organization.

And she drew the landscape. The whorls and funnels of the wind amongst the rocky canyons; the arches and spires that the twisting sand had made over the years. The Ridge that slowly got closer as they skirted the desert; the statues that lined the route, each with individual names and stories of people long-gone or never existing. The dusty path, the sandstorms that blocked their view and made them huddled under the canvas, the cold mornings and baking middays, the mountains that rose and fell, the desert plain that stretched to eternity. The colours were amazing, too – she was so grateful for the chalks that she had picked up in the market at Belmont. The reds and yellows and whites meant that her sketches leapt out at her, even if they were nothing as beautiful as the reality. And the sky…the greens and blues and yellows did nothing against the sunsets and sunrises that framed her days, but at least she could try to set her pad alight as much as the sunsets did her mind.

She felt as if she had opened up, and the world was pouring through her.

Author: kate

Kate Coe is an editor, book reviewer and writer of fiction & fantasy. She writes the sparkpunk GreenSky series and blogs at When she's not working, she fills her spare time in between writing with web design, gaming, geeky cross-stitch and DIY (which may or may not involve destroying things). She also reads far fewer books that she would like to, but possibly more than she really has time for.