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#61 of 68 Old 04-20-2009, 03:12 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Bearsmomma View Post
Here is my prologue. I keep going back and changing it, but I think this may be it the final version. (ya know, for now. )


Prologue:


There are places on earth that light never touches. I’ve tried to imagine myself in them.
Two miles down below the ocean floor into the deepest abyss, surrounded by colorless, glowing animals. Would it be peaceful to live in a flowing world of nothing?
Far into the center of a cave, where no light has ever entered. What lurked inside of them, and what would it be like to live a life of blindness?
Mostly, I wondered what it was like deep below my feet, into a man made tunnel plowed through our earth. What was it like to travel under it, each day in an effort to bring out fuel, all in the sake of money? And how terrifying would it feel to be trapped in it, until all the oxygen was gone, and there wasn’t enough left for even a breath?
My husband knew the answer to this.



Okay, so I've never made it past english 101, so feel free to tell me how horrible it is. I'll take all the grammar advice I can get. haha

I'd certainly be hooked here! I love how personal the last line is.

My kids are 8, 5 and 2!
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#62 of 68 Old 04-24-2009, 04:31 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Bearsmomma View Post
Here is my prologue. I keep going back and changing it, but I think this may be it the final version. (ya know, for now. )


Prologue:


There are places on earth that light never touches. I’ve tried to imagine myself in them.
Two miles down below the ocean floor into the deepest abyss, surrounded by colorless, glowing animals. Would it be peaceful to live in a flowing world of nothing?
Far into the center of a cave, where no light has ever entered. What lurked inside of them, and what would it be like to live a life of blindness?
Mostly, I wondered what it was like deep below my feet, into a man made tunnel plowed through our earth. What was it like to travel under it, each day in an effort to bring out fuel, all in the sake of money? And how terrifying would it feel to be trapped in it, until all the oxygen was gone, and there wasn’t enough left for even a breath?
My husband knew the answer to this.



Okay, so I've never made it past english 101, so feel free to tell me how horrible it is. I'll take all the grammar advice I can get. haha
Very nice lead-in. Only it should be for the sake of money. or in the name of money. I'm very interested. Very nice teaser.
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#63 of 68 Old 04-24-2009, 04:39 PM
 
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Ok, first chapter of the novel I'm working on. This is actually my life story or segments of it. So I'm really putting myself out there. I need real critiquing. I should probably put a disclaimer here saying that some of this is graphic in a sexual sense. Probably will be more graphic in the rewrite. It's toned down a bit. I'm thinking of calling this Smalltown Secrets

Chapter One

Everything is hot and humid in the summertime in the South, even the dark basements of total strangers. I stand there trying to decide if my eyes are really open and wondering why it matters as rough hands paw at my clothes, managing to get my shirt off but not my bra so I reach back and unhook it for him with ease. I pull his shirt over his head as a hundred horror movie scenes flash through my head, slutty girls led into dark basements by horny, and often beautiful men they just met. They’re always naked and really getting lost in each other when the man in the hockey mask, with the knives on his hands, with a buzzing, bloody chainsaw shows up to hack them into tiny pieces, oh I can only wish. Of course, in the movies the teenage girls always have perky breasts and tiny hips and they never have children. I try, and mostly succeed to stifle the laughter that threatens to escape. I may not know much about this man, but I do know enough about men in general not to laugh during sex especially the first time, even in the pitch dark, or maybe especially in the pitch dark. My toddler daughter is upstairs among strangers, my cousin the only familiar face, but she will be taken care of, she always is, my little golden child who deserves so much more than me.

We are both starting to sweat now in the heat of the windowless basement. He runs his hand down my back leaving a trail of wetness. It is slick at first then sticky, and I haven’t yet realized how much is wrong here. I trip over clothing and fall back onto a bed, whose I don’t know nor care. I don’t care about much anymore except that when I pass out of the world my daughter never knows how strongly I sought death. Is there a word for indirect suicide? I think they call it self-destruction. Better she not perceive it as suicide. The bed is against the wall, and I don’t even feel my shoulder hit it as he turns me over onto my back and starts to pull my pants and underwear down as a single article of clothing, and more sweat drips onto my stomach and breasts, and then he’s smearing it with his hands. I don’t remember anyone ever sweating so much, and still I don’t know that something is wrong.

I struggle to find the button on his jeans, but he’s already there, pulling them off and I imagine him hopping around in the darkness and finally there’s nothing left between us but the hot, sticky sweat; there’s so much of it. As the single-most pivotal moment in my life approaches, I grope for this strange but beautiful man in the darkness feeling tight, hard muscles and another hardness farther down and thanking the powers that be for the darkness that hides my own, less firm body. My mind wonders, and I think again of my daughter upstairs and for a moment I almost make him stop. How many precarious situations does it take before bad turns to worse and my life really does end? If only the madman from the horror film really would show up, but no one comes, not yet, and my senses seem to heighten. I feel him slithering over me and into me and taste salt and something else familiar, and I notice the air doesn’t just smell musty, but also metallic. Then the world changes for me.

I feel a dripping on my face and it is so hot, thick, sticky. The guy on top of me doesn’t seem to notice that something is dripping on us or maybe he still thinks it’s just sweat. It’s so damn hot in here. He is still trying to find my mouth in the dark and the dripping turns into a stream and it’s sliding into my hair, down my neck, and the wrongness of it is now apparent. I shove the guy off me and yell at him to stop and find a light, and finally he realizes something is off. Is he really dense, or does he just not care? I haven’t known him long enough to have the answer.

“What is this shit?” he asks and even in my blindness I can see him trying to look at his own hands.
“Just find the light, already.” I say, trying not to imagine. I can feel my hair sticking to my head. Then the light comes on both literally and figuratively.

It doesn’t take nearly long enough for my eyes to adjust to the dim lights in the previously pitch dark basement room. Looking around I think at first that someone has been killed here, and we have been wallowing in the poor soul’s blood. We are covered with it. The room is covered with it. The bed, the wall beside the bed, even the floor is red with blood. My hair is matted with it and I can feel it drying already on my stomach and breasts and face. His face is also covered, and that’s when I realize the blood is coming from his nose. And this is how my life changes forever.

The thoughts are fast enough to almost be simultaneous,
He has some disease, he has AIDS, what have I done, I don’t really want to die.

The last one startles me more than the others and “What the hell is wrong with you?” is what I shout at him over and over again not quite oblivious to the people upstairs. He seems so unimpressed by the horror around us and actually laughs; at me is what I think. He’s laughing at me.

***************

I can’t remember the first time I wanted to die. I’ve wanted for a long time to understand the beginning of who I am. Did it start with my first memory? I was two years old, and my mother was on her second marriage, driven into it to escape my dad who was still constantly begging her for reconciliation. My stepdad sat in an old recliner, and I was on the floor in front of him. He seemed a giant to me towering over me in that big chair, his hairy chest naked over his sagging underwear. He handed me a brown bottle that smelled rotten to me. I held it steady not sure what he wanted me to do with it, but knowing I was in trouble if I spilled it. He smiled at me, but I knew he wasn’t being nice, then told me to drink it. I choked on the first swallow and struggled not to spit anything onto the floor, and he yelled at me anyway to finish it all or else, and I knew all too well what that else would be, so I finished it. Then I threw up on the floor.
He just laughed at me.
Maybe that was the first time I felt hatred and despair, but I doubt it. Toddlers don’t know those things even in the worst circumstances. More likely that was the point where determination started. Determination to be strong, to be loved, to gain approval and who better to seek those things from than my own mother, and that would be the beginning of my self-destruction even before I sought it in those terms.
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#64 of 68 Old 04-24-2009, 09:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow! Impressive start, I think. I read Anne Rice, so, nothing about this offends me!

I definetly like the was you start leading the reader into the horror through the senses- gradually. As though at first, theres nothing wrong, it's all in her head. But then, the realization comes, the lights turn on...very good!

I'm terrible at the critique part, but that was my impression, and I had to comment. The reality of the story in your own life definetly adds depth and a crediblity to this story.
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#65 of 68 Old 04-24-2009, 10:54 PM
 
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Originally Posted by cdmaze View Post
Wow! Impressive start, I think. I read Anne Rice, so, nothing about this offends me!

I definetly like the was you start leading the reader into the horror through the senses- gradually. As though at first, theres nothing wrong, it's all in her head. But then, the realization comes, the lights turn on...very good!

I'm terrible at the critique part, but that was my impression, and I had to comment. The reality of the story in your own life definetly adds depth and a crediblity to this story.
Thanks. I'm just getting back in the game after a 10 year writing hiatus so it's still developing. I have a few more chapters written but because it's based on earlier memories I've been struggling to keep the same clarity. I feel like I'm accomplishing what I want in the first chapter, but it took a couple rewrites. Please, anyone that reads it feel free to be brutally honest. I can handle it. This one will be slow going because I'm trying to be truthful and that's hard when you're exposing yourself.
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#66 of 68 Old 04-30-2009, 10:57 AM
 
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I'm new to this forum, so I hope you don't mind me jumping in!

My biggest critique of this chapter is that I don't feel enough connection between the two characters to "buy" that she'd go to his hotel and sleep with him after their very brief encounter in the bar. Yes, it's apparent she's known him before (we find that out after reading the rest of the chapter). But I don't feel the attraction, the raw energy, the whatever that makes her go against what she knows is best to pursue this man. I'd like to see more of what makes this man so compelling to her.

Good job so far!
I have to agree with this. We know what she's doing. She's looking at him across the room and he's staring at her. She's describing him in a physical sense but what is she feeling? I'm interested in reading more though.
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#67 of 68 Old 05-02-2009, 11:45 AM
 
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I'm basically just seconding (is that a word?) the reviews everyone else has made...

I feel for the first chapter we saw, that there wasn't enough description. I felt confused as to who she was and what she was doing there, who he was and why we cared, and had no feeling of atmosphere- what did the bar look like? What was everyone wearing? was it dark and smokey and rank, was it loud and bright and happy? Stuff like that. Even his motel room. Heck, what does HE look like? (ETA- I know you describe him, but it seems so surface it's almost instantly forgotten- I can't hold a picture of him in my mind).


The second one- I loved the descriptions provided, and the dialogue was really smooth. I do the tense jumping around like you do as well, and if i do my own editing I NEVER catch it, my brain doesn't pay attention to that sort of thing. Thankfully my story is being worked on and reviewed by my sister, who is a good editor, so she'll be able to work a lot of my kinks out.


The latest one- I love that style of writing, it's like poetry in novel form. It's the kind of book I could never read (I walk the tightrope between depression and contentment- one misstep and I'm fighting my way back up again), but from that one chapter I WANTED to read more, and figure out how this lady does in the end, if she fights back the bad guys and wins in the end, etc. I don't really have any complaints, except that i was kind of confused for parts of it and had to re-read a few times to understand, but I don't know if that's writing style or the fact that I'm running on 4 hrs of sleep!

Grace - wife to Jeff and mama to Nigella (11/08) and Orrin (01/10)- expecting a new addition (05/12)! Life is a whirlwind, but I'm learning to enjoy the ride!

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#68 of 68 Old 05-20-2009, 01:17 PM
 
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are people still doing this? i would be interested in posting my first chapter but it is VERY draft and kinda long (14.5 pages). i am just looking for some thoughts about my main character and writing flow.
any takers?

Mama to my three little loveys and living the good life in the beautiful Pacific North West 
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