YA fantasy/love story - THEM (working title)

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Kaylabirdy
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YA fantasy/love story - THEM (working title)

Post by Kaylabirdy » March 26th, 2010, 2:50 am

Pulled down for editing! Thanks for the feedback! :D
Last edited by Kaylabirdy on March 30th, 2010, 6:55 am, edited 1 time in total.

JTB
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Re: YA fantasy/love story - THEM (working title)

Post by JTB » March 26th, 2010, 6:00 am

like you already know - there's no real strong hook -


it might not matter to some, but a book full of description, with no action or dialogue will be really tough to pull off

Kaylabirdy
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Re: YA fantasy/love story - THEM (working title)

Post by Kaylabirdy » March 26th, 2010, 6:38 am

JTB wrote:like you already know - there's no real strong hook -


it might not matter to some, but a book full of description, with no action or dialogue will be really tough to pull off
Thank you for saying so!!! Trust me when I say that the book get's chalk full of action and dialogue later. I'm about halfway through the book and my characters started taking off with a mind of their own. They weren't to happy with the simple plot I had planned for them and decided that their story had to be bigger than it was. :D With that said, I read what I'm writing right now, look back on the first three chapters, and think to myself, "Geez, Kayla...you can do better than that." Don't get me wrong, the first couple chapters set the stage. But when my readers first pick up this book, I already want them to be thinking about long lost bloodlines of fairies coming together under prophecies and fighting ancient evils. This girl - the one that this bland introduction just doesn't give credit to - is going to be the catalyst that brings it all together. I just don't feel that when I'm reading this, though. I'm half debating dropping chapter 1 altogether or moving it to later on in the book where it'll be better appreciated and instead giving a bit of a prologue that teases at the idea I just mentioned above. Something that'll make the reader wanna' stick through the next couple of chapters where she talks about her youth and coming into her powers as a seer. Something that'll make them think, "Wow. She thinks she understands, but she doesn't even know what she is yet."

In short, you told me exactly what I needed to hear.

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maybegenius
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Re: YA fantasy/love story - THEM (working title)

Post by maybegenius » March 26th, 2010, 7:59 pm

I think you'd be right in dropping the first chapter. It seems very disjointed from the rest of what you've posted. While reading it, I had the impression that we were in for a story where the narrator and a loved one were stranded somewhere (desert? island?) and would have to survive. It was a very different setup from what it ended up being, which was a paranormal urban story.

Couple of things: you said that your narrator is 19 and looking back on her childhood? That might be problematic for a YA novel. That tends to happen more in adult novels, after the person is grown and has a certain distance from their childhood/adolescence. Mary Kole posted some quality info on that in a recent critique she did. It can be done, you just have to be careful with it.

There is a lot of info dumping going on here that you could trim or incorporate later. You're giving a history of fairies before your reader has a chance to 1.) get involved in the story, and 2.) care about your narrator enough to listen to her lecture, which is kind of what she's doing there.

The voice is kind of off in some places. This narrator is 19, but she's not speaking like a 19-year old. I don't mean she should sound like an airhead, but I really don't know of any 19-year olds who say things like, "They don't see them starving and ready to consume every emotion a human might exude for the pure sake of survival." I was a very well-read and smart 19-year old with a big vocabulary, and I never spoke like that. It doesn't feel authentic sometimes. Other places, you capture that voice, like here: "They aren't Tinkerbell or something from A Midsummer's Night Dream." That sounds more 19-year old to me.

Have you read Melissa Marr's Wicked Lovely? She starts with a similar premise, and her protagonist has a very teenage voice. Not stupid or silly, but definitely a teenager.

I think you write very well :) These passages need reworking from a plotting standpoint, and maybe voice as well, but the writing itself is good. You already know that these passages need work, and that's good! That shows that you can look at your work with an objective eye, and that's VERY important. I like the new twist on fairies being dangerous and dark instead of happy and light.

Figuring out where to start is a classic problem with novels. Just try to put your familiarity away in your mind, and think - if you picked this up in a bookstore and read the first page, would you keep going? Find the passage that makes you keep going :) Nice work!
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Kaylabirdy
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Re: YA fantasy/love story - THEM (working title)

Post by Kaylabirdy » March 26th, 2010, 9:11 pm

You've given me a lot of food for thought. My sister (18 years old) has been reading and adding input through the entire process and I've asked her to go back through the novel and essentially add/change what you have mentioned with the voice. I'm a big enough girl to admit that I'm a bit detached by age from my target audience and I'm so drawn into my story at the moment that looking at it from an outside perspective is a bit difficult. I fully intend to set my novel aside when it's complete and let myself forget about the story enough that I can look back over it and see it in a more judicial perspective. The advice about the voice of my girl will definitely be floating in the back of my head when that happens.

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