Work in Progress

Since I started this blog, I’ve found that while I’m busy writing short stories and poetry for the blog, and short stories for competitions, my current major work in progress hasn’t been, well, progressing.

Before I started the blog, I had three chapters of The Venomous Void, the sequel to Wendy Watchitt, written. As of writing this, I still have three chapters of Venomous Void written.

Here’s the first of those three chapters.

Pencil sketch of a tower, with the caption: The Ivory Tower.

The Venomous Void Chapter 1

Going to Grandma’s

Chapter of work in progress by Iris Carden

It was the day after New Year’s Day.

Wendy Watchitt and her cousin Frederick were packing for a week at their Grandmother’s home.

Their Grandmother was the Watchitt Queen, and visiting her meant a trip to the Watchitt Realm, to stay in the Ivory Tower.

Wendy had promised to visit during school holidays for ‘princess lessons’, when she would learn the skills Queen Bertha thought she would need when she eventually became Queen.

Wendy’s mother Maria Watchitt-Normal swept purposefully into Wendy’s room.  (Maria never simply walked or meandered or ambled anywhere. She always moved with definite purpose.)

“Do you have everything? Toothbrush? Underwear? Socks?” she asked briskly.

“Yes,” said Wendy, “although if I forgot anything I could just blink what I wanted.”

“You could,” said Maria, “but you’ve been chosen as the next Watchitt Queen, so demonstrating some organisational skills might be a good idea. If you’re packed, come to the lounge room to say good-bye to everyone.  Frederick’s already there.”

Wendy picked up her backpack.  “Come on, Toad,” she said, putting her hand down on her bed.  Toad, Wendy’s pet toad, obligingly climbed from the bed up Wendy’s arm and settled into her wiry copper-coloured curls.

In the lounge room were Frederick, Maria, Wendy’s step-father David, and her step-brother Bobby. Beside them was Wendy’s dog Woofles, an 80kg dog of unknown and unknowable breed.

“Are you ready to go, Woofles?” Wendy asked.

“I’ve decided to stay here,” Woofles said, “so Bobby doesn’t get lonely.”

“David and Mum are here, so Bobby won’t get lonely,” Wendy said.

“Grown-ups don’t count. You know that,” Woofles replied.

Wendy knew it was true.  Friends and pets were very different from parents.

“One week only,” Maria said.  “Don’t let Queen Bertha talk you into staying longer. You need to be back for your birthday, Wendy, and to shop for school supplies for both of you.”

Wendy and Frederick agreed and said their good-byes.  

“OK,” said Wendy, “Three, two, one.”

Wendy, Frederick and Toad all blinked. Instantly they were in the reception room at the Ivory Tower, where their Grandmother was waiting.

Chapters of the Venomous Void to date:

Now the story is complete, I will edit it and get it ready to publish it as a book. Look out for it soon at your favourite online bookshop.

Wendy Watchitt

The Venomous Void will be the sequel to my children’s chapter book Wendy Watchitt.

Cover of Wendy Watchitt by Iris Carden, featuring an oil painting of a girl who has a toad sitting in her curly red hair.

Wendy Watchitt is just an average 10 year old girl.

She’s brave and clever and caring. She carries her pet toad on her head, and makes strange things happen when she blinks. Well, perhaps she isn’t quite so average.

A new adventure starts for Wendy when her family moves house.

A new town, a new home, new school, and new best friend are just the beginning of what she’s going to find.

Wendy will have to save her friends, travel between realms, learn some very big family secrets, and still find time to get her homework done.

While you’re here…

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Everything on this site is the product of human, not artificial, intelligence.


By Iris Carden

Iris Carden is an Australian indie author, mother, grandmother, and chronic illness patient. On good days, she writes. Because of the unpredictability of her health, she writes on an indie basis, not trying to meet deadlines. She lives on a disability support pension now, but her ultimate dream is to earn her own living from her writing.


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