Running in Flip-Flops - Back for More!!! (Page 2)

Share your blood sweat tears query for feedback and lend your hard-won expertise to others
ABFTomioka
Posts: 32
Joined: August 30th, 2010, 8:36 pm
Location: Japan
Contact:

Re: Running in Flip-Flops - Back for More!!! (Page 2)

Post by ABFTomioka » November 18th, 2010, 1:32 am

And here they are! Two query ideas....which one do you think is best? I appreciate any suggestions for more revision!

(Older) Version 1:

Shannon Wheaton has no running water or electricity, and that’s the easy part.

When she arrives in Senegal as a young Peace Corps Volunteer, Shannon is blazing with determination to embrace a community and improve people's lives. Life in a rural village means constant discoveries as she learns everyday tasks like shelling peanuts, pulling water, and eating lunch from a communal bowl, along with celebrations and Muslim holidays. In time the village feels like home, but it’s not always serene.

Loud, aggressive Wolof culture – with repetitive conversations, marriage proposals and pushy requests for gifts - strains her to the breaking point. Cross-cultural training and good intentions make poor armor against a culture so different from Shannon’s true personality. To cope, she builds her own Wolof persona. It suits her new world, but the stress of constant acting frequently sends her scurrying back to her hut.

Work is a roller coaster of emotional highs and lows. Her agriculture assignment is a failure, but Shannon pushes aside her beliefs in grassroots development to help the village find funding for latrines. Though she sometimes feels she’s making a difference, Shannon often wonders if her presence is futile. She hasn't been kissed in ages, and she can no longer endure sitting around doing nothing. Except for a few projects, she avoids people to spend long hours reading, sweating, and counting the days. Still, going home never crosses her mind. She signed on for two full years, and occasional successes inspire her to keep going.

Near the end of her service, Shannon meets André, a sexy Portuguese road worker. Their golden affair seems perfect until André reveals he is married. His deception forces Shannon to reconsider her Peace Corps experience, as she realizes the truly good people were those who had been driving her crazy all along.

My Peace Corps service ended in November 2009, and this novel is strongly based on my experiences. RUNNING IN FLIP-FLOPS is a work of general fiction, complete at 98,000 words.


(Newer) Version 2:

Shannon Wheaton has no running water or electricity, and that’s the easy part.

As a Peace Corps Volunteer, Shannon willingly signs on for two years in Senegal. She expects a rural African lifestyle, and gets exactly that in the village of Keur Souleye: a mud hut, a pit toilet, a boistrous host family, millet with leaf sauce, and endless days of shelling peanuts. Sharing everyday tasks, village celebrations, and Muslim holidays, she discovers the intimate world of agricultural village life. As time passes, Shannon feels more and more at home in her community.

Except for the culture. She could never have prepared herself for it - loud, aggressive, and constantly joking, Wolof culture grates on soft-spoken Shannon’s nerves. Good intentions and cross-cultural training make poor armor, and Shannon finds herself battling anger and frustration. It doesn’t help that most work projects flop due to villagers’ disinterest. Even worse, she hasn’t been kissed in ages! Sitting around, doing nothing but chat with village women, soon saps Shannon’s enthusiasm. Yet she wonders which is the real enemy – Senegalese culture, or her own personality.

Work finally improves when Shannon puts aside her aversion to seeking outside funds for projects. The villagers are delighted with their new latrines and school library, but by then Shannon is burnt out. Except for a few small projects, she avoids people to spend long hours in her hut, reading, sweating, and counting the days.

Near the end of her service, when apathy has nearly stripped Shannon of everything she once believed, she meets André. The sexy Portuguese road worker reawakens her emotions. Their golden affair seems perfect...until André reveals he is married. Horrified, Shannon realizes the truly good people were those who welcomed her - and drove her crazy - all along: the villagers of Keur Souleye.

My Peace Corps service ended in November 2009, and this novel is strongly based on my experiences. RUNNING IN FLIP-FLOPS is a work of general fiction, complete at 98,000 words.

User avatar
androidblues
Posts: 134
Joined: September 30th, 2010, 5:59 pm
Location: Albuquerque,NM
Contact:

Re: Running in Flip-Flops - Back for More!!! (Page 2)

Post by androidblues » November 18th, 2010, 7:00 pm

My favorite is the second one, but I wish you didn't give away the ending. Maybe you can hint it, because now that I know what happens I feel less enthusiastic about reading it. Senegal sounds adventurous -- for lack of better word. I've been to Egypt before, which was a third world country in parts and 1st world in others so I get why Shannon is peeved with the people at times.

Question, is the deception that Andre played going to make Shannon get with one of the villagers? If not, maybe you could play up the even bigger events that have her question herself and her intentions, love, life etc, if so maybe mention the other love interest.
http://www.thebooklantern.com

Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

I never want to hear the screams of the teenage girls in other people's dreams.

In the real word as in dreams, nothing is quite what it seems.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests