This is an advice column from UPost. We take in advice from anything relating to school to friends and to existential crises. Don’t worry, this is completely anonymous so send in whatever you want (but inappropriate messages will be deleted). Thanks, Hank
By Jordan McQuiston
You may have heard of the Great American Novel. It’s a term that has been applied to such works of literature as Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. Well, despite the fact that none of the novels written in UHS Novel Writing class this summer were quite to that level of “greatness,” I still believe that we have accomplished greatness in this class.
As the morning meeting given on the class stated, the range of premises cover a large range of genres and feelings: romance, dystopian, supernatural fantasy, semi-religious fantasy. The characters involved include the Greek god Cupid, a demon, a villain with a half-chupacabra face, a foreign exchange student, a high school outcast, and an evil Potentate.
Here are two passages from two different novels. The first is from my novel, entitled All The Devils Are Here:
Arakiel slithered into the house, silently creeping on his prey. He felt nothing for this mortal. His life meant nothing. His Master needed him dead, and soon he would be. He moved in, closer and closer to the armchair where Thomas was dozing. This was it. The time had come. He reared back, ready to strike, to ram his fangs into the mortal’s neck. But before he could do so, he felt a burning on his scaled forehead. He swore, buzzing and clicking his forked tongue to form the demonic curse, relieving a small portion of his pain with the malice of his language. He had to speak to his Master, but in his serpentine form, he lack the hands and feet he would need to perform the accompanying motions of his kind’s language. He knew his Master would understand him regardless, all-knowing as He was, but it would be disrespectful not to address him in the proper manner just to maintain the convenient form of a lesser being, one that, useful as it was, even the mortals viewed as a mere unpleasant animal.
Begrudgingly, he slithered out of the house and transformed invisibly into his natural state, not his suited mortal form, but his true demonic self.
“What do You desire, O Great One?” he asked, fighting to keep the annoyance from his voice, knowing that His Master knew his feelings but trying to respectfully reduce them.
“You must wait…” that familiar voice called in his mind. “Wait until the mortal you pretend to serve arrives. I know that the plan has changed, Arakiel, but do not argue. Simply do as I command and all that we have strived for will be played into My hands.”
“Of course, my Master…” Arakiel nodded. “What shall i do in the meantime?”
“Just wait…” the voice said. And then it was gone, leaving Arakiel alone, a hungry excitement filling him, excitement for what his Master had planned.
The second passage is from Lauren Szymczak’s novel, Let’s Be In Love:
There is a universal school smell that invokes a good deal of dread and profuse sweating to anyone with an ounce of self-awareness. This mixed with unidentifiable cafeteria odors fill the hall as I make my way to “the nutrition center”. I don’t buy a lunch. I feel too weird to get one. It is my first day here and my stomach is in knots. I’m used to being without friends, but usually it’s in an environment I’m used to. And then, my first incident of mean people I have had since…earlier this morning.
“Look, another new kid, what a freak!” a snide person remarks, “Look at what she’s wearing. She looks like a troll!”.
I don’t realize that this girl was laughing at me, so I try to ignore her, until I get tripped. My books fly in every direction. “Great, great start Maggie,” I think.
“Ha, klutz!” she laughs with her friends.
I want to tell her to shut up, but I don’t need the unnecessary attention today. Was I a freak? Probably. I didn’t like other people calling me that either way. Before I had the chance to reflect for too long, a non-unfortunate thing happens.
As I proceed to pick up my books and stand up, I immediately run into the friendliest face I’ve seen all day. She has short black hair and bright eyes and an encouraging grin.
“Sorry about them,” she says as we both crouch to the floor. “they go out of their way to be awful. Here, let me help you pick these up.,” she says as we both crouch to the floor. Her voice has this perfect tone and sounds like a melody. Her voice was like the lullaby of Mary Lambert.
“Your voice is beautiful…haha I mean…um it’s okay, thank you,” I reply.
This has been a magnificent experience for all of us, and we hope you will read our novels when they are fully revised.