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Thread: [Critique Game] Post The First Three Sentences of your Short Story

  1. #951
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Here's one:

    Julie realized with a start that she had just hurt Jason's feelings badly, and had only felt a sense of pride. She thought back over the past few "tough decisions" she had made and saw that she had relished watching a veil of disappointment drop over the eyes of the people she was supposed to care about. Something was backwards.

  2. #952
    Write. Write. Writey Write Write. mrsmig's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MegFlick View Post
    Here's one:

    Julie realized with a start that she had just hurt Jason's feelings badly, and had only felt a sense of pride. She thought back over the past few "tough decisions" she had made and saw that she had relished watching a veil of disappointment drop over the eyes of the people she was supposed to care about. Something was backwards.
    Navel-gazing isn't the most intriguing start, but this is well-written, and that would keep me reading on. If more introspection follows, though, I'd probably put your book down.
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  3. #953
    Mostly harmless SuperModerator dpaterso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MegFlick View Post
    Julie realized with a start that she had just hurt Jason's feelings badly, and had only felt a sense of pride. She thought back over the past few "tough decisions" she had made and saw that she had relished watching a veil of disappointment drop over the eyes of the people she was supposed to care about. Something was backwards.
    Without context or setting or introduction, this just doesn't work for me. It's impossible to understand or feel anything about these complete strangers. Clumsy metaphor, it's like catching a snippet from an ongoing soap and I've missed the first 10 episodes.

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  4. #954
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrsmig View Post
    Navel-gazing isn't the most intriguing start, but this is well-written, and that would keep me reading on. If more introspection follows, though, I'd probably put your book down.
    Ooh, good notes. Thanks, there is quite a bit of introspection in this one. I can move things around to keep it moving.

  5. #955
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Quote Originally Posted by dpaterso View Post
    Without context or setting or introduction, this just doesn't work for me. It's impossible to understand or feel anything about these complete strangers. Clumsy metaphor, it's like catching a snippet from an ongoing soap and I've missed the first 10 episodes.

    -Derek
    Definitely fair, it's very short fiction, so it moves into details pretty quickly, but I don't usually spend a huge amount of time on exposition or scene setting, so that's something to think about. I agree that it's hard to care about characters immediately. Thanks for your input!

  6. #956
    practical experience, FTW Denevius's Avatar
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    Take the day off, they said, her sisters, You’re no good at the pole tonight, and Shelly left. She took off the feathered costume at a go, instead of bit by teasing bit to reveal her brown skin like she did each evening. This time nobody watched her.
    Nice voice. I would read on.
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  7. #957
    practical experience, FTW Denevius's Avatar
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    Julie realized with a start that she had just hurt Jason's feelings badly, and had only felt a sense of pride. She thought back over the past few "tough decisions" she had made and saw that she had relished watching a veil of disappointment drop over the eyes of the people she was supposed to care about. Something was backwards.
    There's too many unnecessary words. The content isn't bad, and I would probably read a little further, but if the language remained this convoluted, I probably wouldn't get past the first page.
    WHEELS AND DEALS - Available now for pre-order at Amazon or Kobo from Pole to Pole Publishing
    SHOVE PUSH STAND - September 1st in Aurora Wolf
    THE POP SINGER - Issue #9 of SciFan Magazine
    THE ASCENT MADE HIM PLUNGE - The Big Book of Bootleg Horror 2, Hellbound Books Publishing
    GWI'SHIN - Reprint: Scarlet Leaf Review
    INFECTIOUS - Issue 54 of Expanded Horizons
    TRANSUBSTANTIATION - Expected publishing date September 2017, Issue #104 of Aurealis Science Fiction & Fantasy
    GWI'SHIN - September 2016 in Eastlit Journal
    MOMENTUM - Issue #3, and as part of an anthology in Tokyo Yakuza.
    CHINGU - Tincture Journal
    Website: A Crow's Flying

  8. #958
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    Quote Originally Posted by MegFlick View Post
    Here's one:

    Julie realized with a start that she had just hurt Jason's feelings badly, and had only felt a sense of pride. She thought back over the past few "tough decisions" she had made and saw that she had relished watching a veil of disappointment drop over the eyes of the people she was supposed to care about. Something was backwards.
    We don't know who Julie and Jason are, so we can't bring ourselves to care for them. We need a hint of an intriguing setting or the characters before we are teased into reading further. Show the character in action straightaway, and then let us into their heads without filter words, like 'realize,' that take away from the sense of immediacy.

  9. #959
    Mostly harmless SuperModerator dpaterso's Avatar
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    First 3 of a WIP:

    Lightning streaked across the sky and a second later, thunder boomed like an angry bass drum. Fomalhaut tilted his face up to the heavens and enjoyed the feel of rain upon his flesh, a rare treat. The raindrops hissed as they touched him and turned to steam.

    -Derek

  10. #960
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    Quote Originally Posted by dpaterso View Post
    First 3 of a WIP:

    Lightning streaked across the sky and a second later, thunder boomed like an angry bass drum. Fomalhaut tilted his face up to the heavens and enjoyed the feel of rain upon his flesh, a rare treat. The raindrops hissed as they touched him and turned to steam.

    -Derek
    Intriguing beginning-- I would read more. The impact hinges on the last line, where we see that the character is non human, as raindrop turns to steam. I would suggest taking out 'a rare treat', which reduces from the impact. It could come in somewhere in the following lines-- that rains are rare in the land, and that this character finds it a treat, and why.

    I don't know how the story goes on, but the word 'flesh' threw me as well. Does Fomalhaut have no skin?
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  11. #961
    Write. Write. Writey Write Write. mrsmig's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dpaterso View Post
    First 3 of a WIP:

    Lightning streaked across the sky and a second later, thunder boomed like an angry bass drum. Fomalhaut tilted his face up to the heavens and enjoyed the feel of rain upon his flesh, a rare treat. The raindrops hissed as they touched him and turned to steam.

    -Derek
    I am intrigued by a man so hot he can turn water to steam.

    My only nitpick was over that thunder/drum metaphor. It feels a bit cliched and hence, somewhat pedestrian. I bet you can come up with a more visceral description - or just back off the metaphor and let that steamy gent take center stage.
    KINGLET: Now available from Fiery Seas Publishing: Amazon Barnes & Noble iBooks Kobo
    FISKUR: Releasing November 2017 from Fiery Seas



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    And the occasional Tweet.





  12. #962
    practical experience, FTW Denevius's Avatar
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    Lightning streaked across the sky and a second later, thunder boomed like an angry bass drum. Fomalhaut tilted his face up to the heavens and enjoyed the feel of rain upon his flesh, a rare treat. The raindrops hissed as they touched him and turned to steam.
    I would definitely cut the first line. The first thing I'm reminded of is a B-movie, and that would probably make me put this story down there.

    The next two lines are okay, though I think you could incorporate the image in the last line into a first line, which would be an intriguing beginning.
    WHEELS AND DEALS - Available now for pre-order at Amazon or Kobo from Pole to Pole Publishing
    SHOVE PUSH STAND - September 1st in Aurora Wolf
    THE POP SINGER - Issue #9 of SciFan Magazine
    THE ASCENT MADE HIM PLUNGE - The Big Book of Bootleg Horror 2, Hellbound Books Publishing
    GWI'SHIN - Reprint: Scarlet Leaf Review
    INFECTIOUS - Issue 54 of Expanded Horizons
    TRANSUBSTANTIATION - Expected publishing date September 2017, Issue #104 of Aurealis Science Fiction & Fantasy
    GWI'SHIN - September 2016 in Eastlit Journal
    MOMENTUM - Issue #3, and as part of an anthology in Tokyo Yakuza.
    CHINGU - Tincture Journal
    Website: A Crow's Flying

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