‘shoes & spies’: my current WIP

Fairytale retellings are the bomb.  I love them.  Can’t get enough of them.  So, of course, I had to write one.  I started writing Shoes & Spies for NaNoWriMo 2017 but only got about 25,000 words written during that month.  Just this morning I finished my first draft of about 48,000 words.  I know it’s pathetic that it took me that long to finish it, but I’m not the most consistent writer and for the longest time I had no idea how the story would end (so, obviously, I couldn’t write toward an ending).

But, yes, the first draft is now finished.  I’ve still got sooooo much work to do before the story is anywhere near presentable, but I can work with what I’ve got.  First drafts are supposed to be messy, right?  I love this quote from Shannon Hale, because it so perfectly sums up the process of writing a first draft.

So.  The actual story.  I don’t have a blurb or back cover copy yet, so I’m making this up as I go along.

Resistance worker (are they called workers or what?), Lili Verre longs to do something more than simple courier work.  When she finds an invitation to a German party, she knows she has to go, even when her guardian forbids it.  With the help of her best friend, Lili goes to the party anyway.  But when she loses her shoe, one with secret information hidden in its hollow heel, and a German officer finds it, her life takes a dramatic turn for the worse.

That’s the gist of it, anyway.

Then there are all my lovely characters:

  • Lili Verre, my protag. (‘Lili’ because Lily James.  Of course.)  She has a Tragic Past and a professor father who taught her how to speak German.  Basically, she wants to get back at the Nazis for all they took from her and she also wants to keep her little family together.  She’s terrified of losing them, which isn’t the greatest thing when you’re in the middle of a war and your whole adopted family is part of the Resistance.
  • Gard and Marc and Marianne Granger.  One family.  Gard is Marc and Marianne’s dad (they’re twins).  He was super close friends with Lili’s dad and took her in after her parents died.  He’s pretty strict, but that’s because he doesn’t want his children (or Lili) to take unnecessary risks.  Marc has daddy issues.  Marianne loves Gone With the Wind and her brother.
  • Walter (I’m sure I gave him a last name but I can’t remember it right now).  German officer.  A Christian.  Has genuine struggles with reconciling his loyalty to his country (and the “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers…” verse) with where he sees the war and Nazism and Germany headed.  Quiet, but a strong personality.
  • Monsieur Ducard.  Owner of the shoe shop where Lili works.  Elderly and very awesome.

I don’t have a Pinterest board for this story (yet), so I don’t have any collages or casting or anything for this story. (Except that Gard is older Glenn Ford.  Like, so much.)  And, like I mentioned before, there’s still a ton of work that needs to be done with plot and characterization and all that.  But I’m ready for it.

Hope you enjoyed this little peek into my WIP! (Also, I don’t think the title Shoes & Spies quite fits.  Because there aren’t really any spies in the book?  Suggestions?)



24 thoughts on “‘shoes & spies’: my current WIP

      1. There’s the Lunar Chronicles – they don’t have legit magic, though there’s a natural-born ability to control people’s minds in certain characters. I would also recommend Rachel Kovaciny as a fairytale retellings author who doesn’t have magic in her writing.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Pssssshhhhhh, that’s not pathetic! That’s great! You FINISHED it. That’s huge.

    I love that quotation from Shannon Hale. I remind myself of it over and over and over when writing first drafts.

    I say “resistance fighter” myself.

    An older Glenn Ford! OOOOOOOOOOH. I’m so on board with that. And Walter and Lili sound awesome! The name Lili makes me think of the WWII song “Lili Marlene.”

    Hmm. Titles. Are tricky. I’m sure something will come along eventually! For now, Shoes and Spies is a fine working title. (I think so, and so does Cassian.)


    1. Thanks!

      I’ve heard ‘Lili Marlene’ before – very pretty/sad song. Which is actually a bit like Lili herself. (And how did I know you’d approve of my casting for Gard? ;))

      Elisabeth HATES the title for some reason. But, yes, I think it’s a good working title, especially since I rarely can think of any title – working or not.


  2. jessica prescott

    I can’t wait to read this. ❤

    Walter sounds a little like Claus von Stauffenberg, actually! And I love Stauffenberg 😀


      1. jessica prescott

        I’ve seen parts of it! We did a presentation about him in German class and we used some clips from the film.


  3. Don’t call taking that long to finish a book pathetic. The mere fact that you finished it is far more than most people have done.

    Also I like the general sound of the book. As far as I know, there isn’t that much fiction focusing on the German Resistance during the Second World War. The added family drama element could also work quite well.


    1. Thanks. 🙂 With reflection, I’ve realized it isn’t pathetic at all…I usually don’t finish the books I start, so it is a pretty big deal.

      There’s plenty of family drama. 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s