The Accused

The Accused
June 15, 2012 42 Comments Writing Stephanie Ayers
image from Madison Woods

It is summer, 1692 AD in Salem, Massachusetts, and my name is Mary. The world around me has gone crazy. I have watched as the village turned on its own, hanging innocents out of fear and the lies of children. Good, kind, God-fearing innocents.

I fear for my life. I have worked beside many of the accused, lending a hand in the kneading and baking of bread, tending to their gardens. I fear I am next.

I could stay, anxiously waiting, or I could follow that path behind my house through the woods, leaving behind all I have ever known.

 

 

 

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Today’s fiction is inspired by Madison Woods’ photo prompt for #FridayFictioneers and the Bloggy Mom’s Writer’s Workshop prompt, which was to write what you don’t know, or something new. I’ve never taken on historical fiction, so I thought I would try it here. It also works for Write on Edge’s Friday prompt, which was the role of Fate.

I would love to get your thoughts on this short piece. Feel free to share your thoughts in a comment.

Thanks for stopping in!

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Stephanie Ayers A published author with a knack for twisted tales, Stephanie Ayers is the Executive Creative Director of OWS Ink, LLC, a community for writers and readers alike. She loves a good thriller, fairies, things that go bump in the night, and sappy stories. When she is not writing, she can be found in Creative Cloud designing book covers and promotional graphics for authors.
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  1. 42 Comments

    Lisa insignif at best (@insignifblog)

    I love this! My only criticism is that it’s too short! I would really like to see you turn this into a multi-part story. The Salem Witch Trials have always fascinated me and with your style of writing, I really think you could do it justice!

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      thats what i was thinking too. maybe this would make a nice nano project?

      Sent from my iPad

      Reply
  2. 42 Comments

    Wisper

    Nice! You captured quite a bit in that short thought. I, too, think this would be a great jumping off point for a longer piece. Keep going with it!

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      thanks! i think i could do this, a little research at a time, build the story, plot, characters, etc.

      Sent from my iPad

      Reply
  3. 42 Comments

    Marian

    run! those witch-burners (and pressers and stoners) be crazy!

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      Yes! They are! Ive got an image of a pressing in my head. I’m quite sure there will be at least one pressing in the end. ;)’

      Reply
      1. 42 Comments
  4. 42 Comments

    Melody Pearson

    Oh, yes. Definitely a nano project. Are you doing the August Camp? I really like the idea. You should pursue it for sure. First person is not my forte, but I read it when other people have the courage to give it a try.

    Here’s the link to mine: http://melodypearson.com/june-15-2012-the-trails-beginning/

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      I usually do the November camp. I know they have more other parts of the year, but I do November. This gives me time to put it all together so when November comes I can just write.

      Reply
  5. 42 Comments

    Reading Pleasure

    This reminds me of the Crucible, by Arthur Miller. Poignantly and beautifully told. Mine is here: http://readinpleasure.wordpress.com/2012/06/15/fridayfictioneers-sacrilege/

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      I was thinking of The Crucible too. It’s one of my favorite movies.

      Reply
  6. 42 Comments

    Stacey

    Witches! Definitely different than the children I was envisioning in my piece.

    My main suggestion is to try to vary your use of the word “fear.” “God-fearing” gave me a sense of Mary and her culture, but in other places “hanging innocents out of fear,” “I fear for my life,” “I fear I am next,” changing things up a bit would make the writing feel more alive. Using either “I fear I am next” or “I fear for my life” puts emphasis on the point without overdoing it (repeating it), or you could possibly go the other way and squish them together (“I fear I am next. I fear for my life.”), acknowledging you’re doing it on purpose and driving the “fear” factor. If you are able to convey the fear without using the word fear, then you’ve got it made 🙂

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      Thank you for the suggestions. I do want her fear here to have an affect. I will take your suggestions and tweak it as I get more of the story together. Thank you agaiN!

      Reply
  7. 42 Comments

    theforgottenwife

    Wow! That was really well done!! I enjoyed that a lot. I’m here: http://theforgottenwife.com/2012/06/15/friday-fictioneers-6152012-the-watcher/

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      Thank you!! I enjoyed your piece too.

      Reply
  8. 42 Comments

    Brian Benoit

    I’m always a fan of the historical perspective — I’ve been doing a lot of research on colonial New England lately, myself, so this really did the trick for me. And then you take that historical background and bend it toward a fresh story and an adventure. Great!

    Brian (http://pinionpost.com/2012/06/15/arrival-in-sharesh-an-ill-omen/)

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me. I was a bit nervous that I focused too much on the story and the historical aspects would fall to the side, so I really appreciate your comment letting me know that it came out well.

      Reply
  9. 42 Comments

    Sandra

    Best to go, I think. Reason seemed to be in short supply at that time. You captured the time well.
    http://castelsarrasin.wordpress.com/2012/06/15/given-a-choice-friday-fictioneers-june-2012/

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      Thank you for the support. It was my hope that I could establish enough of the time period and the time within the short space, so I am very happy that you could see that.

      Reply
  10. 42 Comments

    VSichalwe

    All I could think was wow she is a WITCH!!! and she is going to be burnt.. really exciting and I really really loved it actually. Thank you for sharing

    http://vsichalwe.wordpress.com/2012/06/15/friday-fictioneers-2/

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      Thank you for sharing your reaction. I’m glad you enjoyed this little story.

      Reply
  11. 42 Comments

    Imelda

    I fear for an unjust trial. I hope she escapes.

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      I love your take on this!

      Reply
  12. 42 Comments

    Carrie

    Ah witches. Always a fun topic. For a short piece it’s good, lots of tension, some dribbles of information. My only critique is the statement at the beginning. I think you could figure out another way to set us in time without just giving the date.

    But obviously since it Was just a short piece this works 🙂

    Go Mary! Run! Run fast!

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      If I did go bigger with this thing, that part would probably be put in the very beginning to establish the timeline. it was definitely a different way to start a story for me!

      Sent from my iPad

      Reply
  13. 42 Comments

    Kathy McClure

    Leave it, leave it, leave it! See it worked, I’m rooting for your protagonist. GOOOO!

    Kathy
    http://notforallmarkets.wordpress.com/2012/06/15/breadcrumbs/

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      Yay!! She needs someone rooting for her I think.

      Sent from my iPad

      Reply
  14. 42 Comments

    erinleary

    I like the feeling of freedom the path holds for her. Interesting premise, too!

    Mine is here: http://erinleary.wordpress.com/2012/06/14/flash-friday-fiction-5/

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      Thank you. I have to admit that I’ve always had a fascination with the witch trials, so this was fun.

      Sent from my iPad

      Reply
  15. 42 Comments

    WriteForACause.Org

    Why were they hanged and accused? Since it’s dated 1692, are they performing witchcraft or something? Because people who used black magics during this period were executed, as far as I know. ^_____^
    here’s mine by the way: http://writeforacause.org/2012/06/15/friday-fictioneers-one-road-two-souls/

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      Yes, this is the time of the Salem Witch Trials.

      Reply
  16. 42 Comments

    yaralwrites

    Nicely done and Mary should run for it!
    here is mine http://yaralwrites.com/

    Reply
  17. 42 Comments

    shelton keys dunning

    Nice! I’m a sucker for period pieces.

    When using dates during that time, it would have been customary to have “In the year of our Lord” instead of AD. Just something to keep in mind.

    So far I’m hooked!

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      Yes, that sounds right. I kept thinking it when I read it.

      Sent from my iPad

      Reply
  18. 42 Comments
  19. 42 Comments

    Kwadwo

    This is an excellent opening to a story. It makes the reader beg for more.
    I’ll like to know what happens with Mary. What does she decide?

    Here’s mine: http://logo-ligi.com/2012/06/15/six-oclock/

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      I’m glad you were sucked in. It’s my intention every time I write. Thanks for stopping in!

      Reply
  20. 42 Comments

    JKBradley

    I wonder how many of those murdered in the trials experienced this very situation you’ve described. Evocative. Thanks.

    http://thebradleychronicles.wordpress.com/2012/06/14/flash-fiction-friday-letting-go/

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      I never thought of it that way. Thanks for stopping in.

      Reply
  21. 42 Comments

    Lora Mitchell

    Wow…this reminds one of the dilemma these poor, innocent women faced, falsely accused of being witches. Maybe if she ran to the forest, there’s a chance an Indian tribe would take her in and save her. I’ve read stories of Indian tribes saving white women and children. Here’s mine:
    http://www.triplemoonstar.blogspot.com

    Reply
    1. 42 Comments

      SAM

      Oh! What a nice idea! I haven’t researched that far into this time but that sounds like it could be a nice addition to the story if I pursue it. Thanks for stopping in!

      Reply
  22. 42 Comments

    Patricia (@patricialynne07)

    Wonderful job. In just a few words, you had me hoping and rooting she’d escape.

    Reply

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