Finally got something from S.E.A. that I liked, that I felt did some sort of justice to the idea I was attempting to capture. Have a snippet. As a note, the Far Shore is what our world is called by the denizens of the magical territory in the story. Ours is the world of the mundane, the material, the quantifiable. Theirs is the world of the mystical, the spiritual, the unknowable. And Teg is the codename for the female character around whom the secondary plot revolves. She can summon water and is using it to travel from the shore to a passing freighter ship.
Dark, many-tentacled things drifted almost out of sight in the murky water. The Far Shore had driven away the sea monsters and the dragons and the wishing fish. They came here instead. The deeper the water Teg swam in, the more dangerous it became. She broke the surface and skimmed the water long enough to take a breath. As she did, she checked the course of the ship and adjusted her own. Back underwater, she scattered a school of rainbow-scaled somethings that emitted mournful hoots and coos.
Another jump, another breath, another correction.
Then she gets attacked by a baby kraken. :)
The scene I had planned revolved mainly around her misgivings about leaving home to seek her fortune and a little demonstration with my world-building. I thought it would be fun, but not twisty at all. What I got instead was a nice little adventure, some great use of my world-building, and an opportunity to make her circumstances even more unpleasant than they had been. Which was just what I needed.
I had a pointlessly hideous day. And I was going to write this whole long post about the crushing weight of my mother’s legacy, as imagined by other people. About my love and respect for and friendship with her as a person and my hatred and terror of her as a mythic hero in the horse world as we know it. About the constant pressure to follow in her footsteps and the constant reminders that I could never possibly live up to her near-magical ability with horses (which is a load of shit anyway; a life of hard work and intelligent attention should not be confused with magic).
Then I realized it just does not matter. In trying to make it as a professional writer, I’ve got her to back my play. The people who actually matter to me do not expect me to do anything with my life but write. I’ve got the means, slim though they may be, to pursue that dream. And if I help with the horses, that’s cool too. It doesn’t have to mean anything more significant than that.
So I deleted the whole thing and spent an hour lost in my writing. So never mind.
To quote Monty Python: sorry; this isn’t a very good announcement. Sorry.