Tag Archives: Bruce Sans Pitié

Writing Workshop – Week 7

This week’s exercise based on Shore Leave by Lynda Hull

Write a descriptive 3rd person scene between two people. The main character is experiencing something that is distressing, but the tone is celebratory and lyrical.

Click here to read the story.

I just finished reading The Once and Future King, and it formed the inspiration for this week’s exercise. Just in case you were wondering, I did not come up with the excellent name Bruce Sans Pitié, but it is rather a minor but symbolic character in T.H. White’s amazing book.

This assignment was pretty tough, as I’m never really good at descriptive scenes, not to mention the celebratory tone, although I think it didn’t turn out too bad in this exercise. I did have one misgiving about the assignment though. In my attempts to make Sam feel as celebratory as possible towards Bruce Sans Pitié, I made him just as unsympathetic as Bruce is. The story would have worked out better if Sam felt some ambiguity about the situation he is in.

In a sense it is a shame that I didn’t notice that sooner, because the moral ambiguity in the characters’ actions is what makes The Once and Future King such an amazing book in the first place. And anyway, you always want to strive for shades of grey in your stories rather than black and white. So if I ever plan to rewrite and expand any of the stories I’ve written for the workshop, this one would definitely be very high on the list.

By the way, I apologize beforehand if I make too many references to the Once and Future King in the coming period, but that is because it has quickly become one of my favorites. I might write a review of it somewhere in the short future.

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Writing Workshop – Week 7 Exercise

This week’s exercise based on Shore Leave by Lynda Hull

Write a descriptive3rd person scene between two people. The main character is experiencing something that is distressing, but the tone is celebratory and lyrical.

Sam the squire enters the village grounds riding behind his master Sir Bruce Sans Pitié. Sir Bruce is perched atop his mighty black warhorse, towering above the simpering peasants, his full plate armor shimmering in the bright midday sun, as if he is being graced by the personal touch of God. He argues with the village elder who grovels pitifully before him, while the other villagers stand around them in a wide circle. Suddenly, a flash of steel appears from his right hand, and the village elder’s head comes tumbling down onto the dusty ground. Shrill screams echo against the blue, serene sky. Two male villagers hastily enter into a house and they reappear moments later with a struggling maiden in their grasps. She screams hysterically when she sees her father’s headless body twitching in the sand, but they are quickly muffled by the gag forced into her mouth. “Bind the maiden and place her onto my squire’s horse,” he exclaims. “It’s a gift before he enters into his full knighthood.” Continue reading

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