Weekend Writing Warriors – Desperate Measures



Have an excerpt from a story you want to share? Look no further than Weekend Writing Warriors, where published/unpublished writers share 8 sentences from their works. I’m also participating in Snippet Sunday. I hope you are all enjoying your weekend wherever you may be, and I want to thank everyone for their helpful comments last week. I attended a lengthy job fair for teachers yesterday in Córdoba, so this is a good way for me to unwind. I’m offering another 8 from my YA horror, The Burning Night. This 8 picks up from last week’s 8, though I’m skipping a few lines.

Set-up: Melissa pleas for Emily to let her sister go, but she refuses and simply watches the two of them ‘dance’. Melissa can no longer stand the burning sensation on her feet, so she employs a little strategy.

Here is the eight, which has been modified from the original to fit the 8 sentence rule:


Glimpsing at the glowing red floor, I spewed out a wail as I felt the flesh on my feet corrode. There wasn’t enough strength left in me to keep moving my feet, and I needed to get them off this hot surface pronto. My pajama pants were the only thing I could think of to protect my feet. Without hesitation, I stripped them off, threw them on the floor under my feet, as a sigh of relief blustered out of my lungs. Ashley’s mouth dropped open as she watched me and I didn’t even care that my undies were showing. Tears welled up behind my eyelids as I piled the pants with my feet to make a thicker cushion. Even on the cool fabric of my pants, my feet stung like they were touching fire coral and I let out a groan full of torment.

  “Ashley, get on,” I urged, stretching out my pants to give her enough room as she quickly jumped on and let out an audible breath of relief from the excruciating pain.



Nice idea, but they obviously need to think of a plan since they can’t stand on the pants forever. Love to know your thoughts, bear in mind this is a second draft and I just added this scene to the story. I’m not sure if I’ll be participating next week, since I might be going down to Málaga for the day. I’m also busy this week with upcoming job interviews so I might not have enough time to put up a snippet. So if you don’t see my name on the list next week, you’ll know why. The following week I’ll be absent because I’ll be going to Zaragoza to visit a former student of mine for the weekend.

Click on the Weekend Writing Warriors link for the official list of participating authors. Enjoy your Sunday!


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40 thoughts on “Weekend Writing Warriors – Desperate Measures

  1. Gem

    Good strategy to defend against a unique torture technique!

    • A writing friend of mine suggested I put it in. It’s the only thing they can use at this point.

  2. burnsmillie

    The pants are a good idea. I hope they aren’t flammable..will the fabric feel cool? Will she even be able to feel it? Her feet are a mess by this point if the floor is glowing orange. Will the fabric adhere to the feet?

    • The next snippet will show the damage to their feet. The fabric isn’t flammable and it is cool enough. Yes, her feet are a mess, but her nerve endings haven’t been destroyed. Again, I’ve taken your points into consideration.

  3. Agreed — great defense. Suggestion: should “glimpsing” be “glancing”?

  4. Oh Frank, still in Spain *swoon* 😀

    I really like the excerpt, but something that’s been bugging me has become clear. You often describe the heat and pain as excruciating, but there’s no mention–unless I missed it–that there’s any damage to their feet. Skin on feet is thin and gets injured easily. I’d think by this time their feet would be burned.

    If you mentioned it, ignore me 🙂 Good luck at the interviews and have fun visiting your friend.

    • Up to this point, they aren’t able to examine the damages to their feet because they are constantly hopping. They can’t afford to stop for a second. It is only when they are on the pjs that they have a chance. The reader can only assume that their feet are damaged.

      It seems as I’ll be in Spain for quite awhile. Thanks for your comments.

  5. Clever! Hope those are fire-resistant pajamas.

  6. Ouch! And the next thing I can see is the pjs catching on fire…

  7. It’s a good start until they figure out better. I wonder if the pajama is going to start burning.

  8. The use of the word corroding is clever, it certainly made my skin crawl. I’m looking forward to reading how you get them out of this situation. It’s a clever concept. Have fun in Spain!

    • Thanks Jess. I thought ‘corrode’ would be clever too – the floor is red-hot after all. To be honest, I’m trying to find an appropriate solution for them as well as I’m editing this draft.

  9. Smart move on their part but I’m sure the evil ones watching from above have something worse planned for them. Good luck with the job interviews, Frank!

    • Thanks Elyzabeth. You’ll see what the evil ones have in mind, but I don’t think this situation could get any worse. Thanks for the wishes with the interviews. We’ll see how they go.

  10. Their poor feet! Good short term solution on her part.

    You might want a little more description of how she ‘piled the fabric with her feet,’ I think. I can’t quite picture what she’s doing, exactly.

    • Thanks Caitlin. Sure I can put in more description: what I’m trying to say is she is attempting to put the pjs into a heap or pull them together so that there can be a thicker cushion for her feet. If that makes sense? What do you suggest?

  11. I’d think more than undies would be revealed.

    • You’re right, but you have to look at the bigger picture – Melissa is referring to her undies as a statement and is more concerned about protecting her feet.

  12. Any port in a storm! This must be a very short term answer and I’m sure you have the next part all sorted out!

  13. Ingenious idea! I hope it gives them enough relief to allow them to work out a permanent solution. Such a suspenseful story! Great 8!

    • It gives them some, but they have to think quick. To be honest, since I’m editing this, I’m thinking of a way they can get out of this. Funny huh?

  14. What a good idea!

    And this also establishes Melissa as someone who puts survival above embarrassment. I have the feeling that’s going to come in handy!

  15. Oh, god – My feet hurt just reading this! I like that she’s using her brain, but I suspect that her good idea won’t last

  16. Good thinking. I’m still wondering what they did to deserve this kind of torture, and is the punishment intended to be lethal in the end or just painful?

    • To be fair, the girls didn’t do anything. These women want vengeance against the girls’ father. I can’t say why at this point. The punishment is meant to be painful.

  17. They are in such a pickle, but at least you’ve bought them a bit of time to figure it out! Good 8, Frank. We’ll miss you the next couple of weeks. Safe journeys wherever your travels take you. 🙂

    • Yes they are in a pickle. To be honest, as I’m editing this I’m trying to figure out how they’ll get out of this.

  18. Good thinking on her part. I wonder how the kidnappers will respond. Hope you’re enjoying your new home;).

  19. Quick thinking, level-headed heroine. I didn’t see this coming and I liked it. This is such a spooky story – great 8!

    • I didn´t think of it either, but then when a friend of mine read it, she asked, “Why don’t they take off their clothes, so they can protect their feet?” Now it makes more sense for me.

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