first pages of new book

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acbc7681
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first pages of new book

Post by acbc7681 » June 5th, 2011, 11:52 am

hey everyone, i just wanted to post the two pages of my book for feedback. thanks so much! title: the devil's touch. genre: not sure about that, historical fiction or autobiographical novel, it's based on the life and murder of my sister from her point of view and my point of view on her life. I re-did the beginning, let me know what everyone thinks.

Rebecca looked down at the paper in front of her. Her eyes lazily drifted across the table trying to bring the words on the paper into focus. It was no use her eyes didn‘t want to cooperate with trying to read right now. “I don’t want to be standing up let alone writing” she thought as her stomach heaved and lurched.

Fred had dragged her into the kitchen and insisted that she write something. Out of the corner of her eye she caught a glint of black and was momentarily distracted when she saw the outline of a gun lying on the kitchen table. “Why would the gun be out?” Her mind contemplated the thought for a second. She pushed the thought away because it was not unusual for the gun to be out. Fred always had it out, waving it around going on about how he needed it to protect himself and his family. Dragging it out of the safe to show people he was the man and intimidate anyone he thought was in his way. She laughed to herself over his macho behavior. Fred tried to be the alpha dog and puff his chest out so he looked bigger. All he needed to do now was bang his fists on his chest like an ape to complete his barbarian, chauvinistic personality. She really did love him in spite of his foolish ways.

What was it now that Fred had told her to write as the task at hand came into the forefront of her mind again. As she scribbled the one line on the paper in front of her, her eyes tried to focus on the words she just wrote. She couldn’t understand why she couldn’t remember the words she had just written. Her mind was really slipping today; she would take a long break from partying after tonight. The paper swam in front of her eyes making it hard to control the heave that was struggling to come up from her stomach.

She felt so tired even though she had only had four drinks. She shouldn’t be this tired especially since she also did two lines of coke. She knew she shouldn’t have, told herself this was the absolute last time she did coke. But she and Fred had been having a good time and he promised this was last time he would bring it in the house. Told her he knew she wanted to stop, told her she was stronger than him. He had even said he would go to rehab; he just wanted one last night of fun with her. They hadn’t been getting along for some time now and Rebecca liked that he was at least trying to clean himself up now so she lovingly obliged and snorted a couple lines of white powder with him. She didn’t want to hurt his feelings, after all he was going to go to rehab and that was a huge step for Fred.

She couldn’t believe that five hours ago she came home prepared to pack up all her things and take them to her parent’s house tonight. She hadn’t expected the warm reception she had been given when she arrived home from work. Fred had lavished attention on her and said everything she wanted to hear. It was like he was the old Fred again and she still loved him deeply. She knew he had problems but she had faith in him. She stood before God and had said, “In good times and in bad, sickness and in health, till death do us part.” and she had meant it. She knew his addiction was a disease and as a nurse who better to take care of him and see him through this than her. She was sure she could make him better. Maybe he would change, maybe this time it would really be different. She had to at least sit down with him and talk, she owed her marriage that much.

It was nice to just relax and have a good time with him. Even so, she shouldn’t be this tired and she could not explain why she felt such a strong urge to just lie down and go to sleep. Her head was swimming and not just her eyes now. She was having trouble standing and remembering why she came into the kitchen in the first place. It definitely was not to get another drink.

thanks for any help in critiqueing, all the suggestions are really helpful!!
Last edited by acbc7681 on June 7th, 2011, 1:30 pm, edited 8 times in total.

AllieS
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Re: first pages of new book

Post by AllieS » June 5th, 2011, 7:44 pm

Woah. I'm a little deterred from reading this because it's one enormous block of text. Could you break it up into paragraphs like it'll be in the book? I just get scared away by a huge mass of text, and I'm sure some others do too.

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bighockeyhair
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Re: first pages of new book

Post by bighockeyhair » June 6th, 2011, 12:14 am

dito on breaking this up into smaller paragraphs. Also please give us the title and genre of story we're about to read. I did wade about a third of the way in and thought your sentences could be tightened and sharpened, but I won't try a line edit till it's broken up into smaller bits.
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Aurlumen
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Re: first pages of new book

Post by Aurlumen » June 7th, 2011, 12:04 am

Did you ever wonder what your life would be like when you grew up? I know I did. I thought I would have a big house ---Right here you lost me. You say did you ever wonder what your LIFE would be like then you start to describe a house and kids and food. I don't feel like you're describing a life but a perfect house. So I wonder if you should change the wording a bit.with a nice big backyard and playscape my future children would play in. The picture perfect nuclear family, a dog chasing two and a half kids around our white picket fenced in yard. And while we’re on the subject, why is it two and a half kids? Why not just two kids or three kids, why two and a half kids? That never made any sense to me, and yet I would think two and a half kids that’s what I want…I think you should take this part out. It sounds like a random thought that crept in and doesn't seem to fit.the perfect family. I would painstakingly and lovingly pull up and sow the earth for a little garden. I would tenderly plant each little seedling at exactly the right time and at exactly the right depth to make them grow into big, strong plants. The garden would be filled with all kinds of fresh vegetables, more than any one person could ask for. I would plant all the ripe juicy berries we could think of . We would eat them whenever we wanted right off the vine, the juice dripping down our faces. And we would throw our heads back and laugh childish, pure, happy laughs.


Then I would chase kids around the yard, threatening to kiss them and get berry juice all over their faces. We would pick a juicy, fresh salad out of the garden every day. Fresh cherry tomatoes that pop in your mouth when you bite into them. Healthy green and red lettuce so crisp you hear it crunch with every bite. Golden orange carrots so long and big it takes one minute to pull them out of the ground. My handsome, loving husband would look out at his family from our backyard deck while he was grilling up hamburgers and have a huge smile plastered on his face. In the winter we would build a snowman and put a carrot on his face for a nose, buttons for eyes, and rocks for a mouth. Then we would make snow forts and have a snowball fight. The soft balls of snow whizzing past our head. We would go sledding at the biggest hill. If the kids should fall off their sleds I would scoop them up, give them a kiss and take them home for some yummy hot chocolate…with two big marshmallows per cup. It’s the kind of life every girl dreams of having when she grows up. A nice, happy family to come home to and have fun with. There is something interesting about the way you've written these first two paragraphs. From the way it reads I can tell you're going to drop a bad-news bomb on me, and I'm sort of waiting for it. Which is good (if that's what you were going for, that is.)


But I digress, my current reality is far from what my childhood dreams were. Here I sit in the present a gun pointed in my face wondering if I am to live or die. That should be a heavy enough dose of reality for you, it is for me. I’ve always heard the saying, “I never thought this would happen to me.” I’ve even uttered that sentence a few times myself. But let me tell you, I never thought even in my wildest dreams thought that I would utter that sentence and be in a situation like this. Although how could anyone think that one day they might be involved in an incident like this, that would be awfully morbid.


No one goes around saying, “One day I think I’ll have a gun pointed at my head and be contemplating whether I will live or die. That sounds like fun, hyuck, hyuck.“ Well, there I go again, off on a tangent. The mind is a wonderful thing, the way it protects you when it knows you are in danger. How it can take you away from a situation when you need it to most. Like thinking absurd things at the absolute wrong time, or going off on mindless tangents when you are really supposed to be pondering your very survival or escape. Ah well, everything happens for a reason I suppose. I’m sure I will know my fate any minute now, I’m just not in a big rush to find it out just yet. Well, I assume you are wondering who my attacker is. Hey, hey, let’s not get ahead of ourselves now. I’ve always been a master at suspense, you’ll just have to wait till I’m ready to let you in on that juicy piece of information. To explain my present situation fully I must--cuts off here?

That being said, I'm not sure how you intend the last two paragraphs to sound. You talk about murder which is horrible, but to be honest I'm not really that concerned about the MC. It sounds like your MC is telling a friend a story about something terrible that happened to her that she now feels is funny or something. Well, funny isn't the right word. But she is talking about her own death (or having a gun pointed at her face) so nonchalantly. So I don't really feel anything but, 'well that sucks but you don't seem too concerned about it...' (saying 'I'm a master at suspense' and 'juicy piece of information' is not really helping) I mean, what is she feeling at that moment? Is she scared? We need some kind of emotion from her to latch onto to help us feel like we're right there with her. It seems like you could have something good here but overall (even including the first two paragraphs) I'm reading and waiting for you to get to the point. I don't really feel drawn in or inclined to keep reading. Say if she was terrified or angry or whatnot that would be different. I don't like that it feels like she's gossiping about her own death, it feels a bit out of place and not realistic. O-o Anyway I hope that all made sense...good luck! Hope it helps.

acbc7681
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Re: first pages of new book

Post by acbc7681 » June 7th, 2011, 8:21 am

thanks for the advice! i really didn't like the beginning either after i re-read and re-read it. i'm in the process of changing it up and will post again after it's revised! thank for the advice again!!

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