Famine #63: Not a Frenchman

Hi All,

I took last week off from Weekend Writing Warriors and Snippet Sunday to focus on editing Famine. It’s down to the nitty-gritty, and I’m aiming for an October release.

So, without further ado, Bartholomew on a train with a group of Americans:


Famine by Monica Pierce

photo: ByteStudio Photography; model: Jacob Cartwright

“Interesting tattoo you’ve got there.” Mr. MacAuliffe jerked his chin toward the aesir’s hand. “Military?”

Bartholomew nodded, and the American added, “Never seen one like that associated with the Blue or the Gray.”

“It’s a continental mark; I didn’t fight in your Civil War.”

Mr. MacAuliffe stared at him until one of the other fellows said, “Right. French.”

Bartholomew ran his fingers along the rounded edge of the polished mahogany bar, and then said, “My ability to speak French doesn’t make me a Frenchman, though that is a frequent misperception among Americans.”


Thanks for stopping by. I hope you’ll take the time to visit the WeWriWa and Snippet Sunday lists. Lotsa great writing to be had each week.

  • We do tend to do that, don’t we? 😉 I might pair a continental tattoo and French and make the assumption, too . . A bit difficult to guess the truth! 😀

    (these photos! Love them!)

  • Maybe he’s from New Orleans.
    Maybe he knows (or has known) a voodoo queen?
    Great dialog!

  • I get the feeling he’s heard this sort of thing before. Not quite insulted, but tired of it?

  • As always, he’s up to no good in a sophisticated way. You paint a fascinating picture, Monica.

  • That’s an interesting thing to say, but it’s a common misconception. Nice descriptions of the scene, Monica.

  • daezarkian

    What a great character. Terrific and snappy dialogue and details as ever, Monica!

  • Great use of the 8’s!

  • Great dialogue! I love how he answers without actually telling much of anything. Keeps him a little mysterious

  • Intriguing! The dialogue is well done, and I like how he toes the line between answering and skirting the question.

  • ldsmith1818

    You really did a fantastic job of working in story details through the dialogue. Love it!

  • Well, it does sound like a safe assumption. But then again… Great snippet — I really enjoy Bartholomew.

  • Nan

    He gave away nothing and yet put the American right in his place, didn’t he? Nice 8!

  • I wondered what he was going to say about the tattoo – a very well crafted snippet there!

  • He probably speaks a lot of languages other than French.

  • Distant but not exactly snobbish. Very nuanced character building.

  • Great piece of dialogue. Reveals far more than the present conversation.Great eight!

  • Sherry Gloag

    Love the distance he put between them and his oh so understated set-down.

  • His aloof but polite demeanor can mean many things. I’ll wait to see where this goes, but I do like Mr. Bartholomew or is it Monsieur Bartholomew? People jump to conclusions when they detect a foreign accent. Good job, nice snippet.

  • burnsmillie

    Monica, another powerful eight! Bartholomew is way too cool!

  • Great last line there.

  • Quit jumping to conclusions, you’ll make him angry!

    I love the detail of him touching the bar, it feels like he’s reaching for self-control, and a polite answer.

  • I love that there is still no true clue in his answer. leaves us wondering as well

  • Oooooh, Monica. You leave me guessing. I’ve never done so much flip-flopping on liking/not liking a character. Batholomew is a conundrum to me. 🙂 Good 8!

    • Monica Enderle Pierce

      LOL! I’m gonna take that as a compliment, Teresa. Bartholomew is an enigma and keeps me guessing, too, if that’s any consolation. 😀

  • Wow I had no idea that American’s believed French had tattoo… not all of us have a tattoo, I don’t 🙂

    • Monica Enderle Pierce

      Oh, ha! That’s the one problem with 8 sentences out of context. 🙂 They’re not assuming he’s French because of the tattoo, but because he describes it as a continental (ie. European) mark and because they’ve heard him speaking French previously. (It doesn’t help that the lot of them are quite intoxicated.)