Getting Ready For NaNoWriMo 2016 - New Project Prologue

Everyone hates prologues. At least, if all of the articles I've read online are to believed, everyone hates them. Still, despite this accepted wisdom, or maybe in spite of it, I've decided that my next project needs to start with a short prologue to set the mood for what lies ahead.

This is it, my ill-advised prologue, for the project that I'm currently plotting out for this year's NaNoWriMo (work-in-progress title "Tree Line"). I expect that this will see some editing, of course, so consider this a rough/first draft.

Thanks for indulging me, not just for this sneak peek, but also for the terrible sin of starting with a prologue.


It was just after 10:15 in the morning when the snow started to come in over the horizon, low enough that it obscured the tops of the peaks it passed over. It was the first snow of the season, but it came in fast, assured, and powerful. It didn't feel like a typical first snowfall, those first few tentative flakes of early fall. Instead, it came in like it meant to do harm; like it had something to prove. Each frozen drop of water was small, but brutal and fast, racing down to add itself to the shallow piles that were already building all around the camp. It was a powerful snow and it quickly became obvious that this would be the start of something difficult, a time that would be hard and unforgiving.

Dave Boyles spit into the wind, a tiny, useless expression of disgust and defiance at what he foresaw in that harsh, cold air. He squinted into the stinging snow, seeing the clouds go from grey into something even darker, then he knelt down and climbed into the cramped tent behind him. Zipping closed the thin, nylon door, he turned away from it, trying to ignore its shudders and jerks under the force of the growing wind outside.

Rummaging through a small pile of clothes near the tent's door, every piece of fabric sharp with the smell of exertion, long days, and limited soap, Dave found a knitted cap and pulled it over his curly, shoulder length hair. He tried to ignore it, but he could already feel the cold settling in through his tent's walls and into his bones.

He picked up a book from another pile. It was a tattered paperback, it's cover torn, it's binding useless and forgetful, leaving pages in it's wake like flakes of dandruff. The book smelled yellow and dusty, a perfume of paper and glue that was comforting somehow. Dave had read the book before, maybe a dozen times, but he turned to the first chapter and started again, started fresh, his eyes falling on ink that would take him out of the cold, out of his tent, and out of the world that had crumbled beneath him.