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THE CROWN BETRAYERS - YA Fantasy/SciFi Will Return Critiques


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#1 ymchen

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Posted 16 December 2017 - 07:13 AM

This is my reworked introduction to my WIP novel, all 250 words of it. I return critiques as well, and also am seeking critiques for my query and synopsis, and if you took a look at them I would be really thankful! 

 

 

A scream pierced the cabin and I jolted from a trance by the hearth. Elodie, my little sister, rushed down the stairs with her dark braids flying behind her.

“Nyssa, it’s Ma,” she gasped.

Lurching to my feet, I hastened up the stairs with Elodie close behind. Her nightgown rustled as she walked. Although her dress was worn, patched together with Ma’s deft hands like everything else we have, I know it brought her comfort. At least, Ma used to repair them, but it’s been my job as of late, along with all the other chores around the house. Our older sister Kara wouldn’t touch anything that might result in work, not even after the sickness tore through Autain three months ago.

Pushing open the door to Ma’s room, fresh incense and heat blasted in our faces. My hair billowed in the updraft and I tucked it back in place.

A lump of dread formed in my stomach when I saw Ma. She was lying on a fluffed-up bed, as she has been for the last two weeks. Her chest rose and fall with each labored breath. Whimpers rose from her blue-tinged mouth, and when I placed a hand on her forehead, her skin was ice-cold despite the heat in the room. My own forehead dripped with sweat, so did Elodie’s, but Ma’s skin was as cold as the northern winds beyond the mountains. I removed my hand from Ma’s forehead as a chill wormed its way into my fingers.

Unnatural.



#2 Nessa

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Posted 16 December 2017 - 12:06 PM



This is my reworked introduction to my WIP novel, all 250 words of it. I return critiques as well, and also am seeking critiques for my query and synopsis, and if you took a look at them I would be really thankful! 

 

​Rough suggestions in green. :)

 

A scream pierced the cabin​.

and I jolted from amy trance by the hearth. Elodie, my little sister, rushed down the stairs, with her dark braids flying behind her.

“Nyssa, it’s Ma,” she gasped. [Consider adding a little description about what Elodie is doing. Ex: She slouched against the wall, chest puffing with short breaths.]

Lurching to my feet, I hastened up the stairs with Elodie close behind. Her nightgown rustled as she walked. Although her dress was worn, patched together with Ma’s deft hands like everything else we had have, I knew know it brought her comfort. At least, Ma used to repair them, but it’s been my job as of late, along with all the other chores around the house. ​[Makes it sound like Elodie's dress was patched by Nyssa, not Ma.] Our older sister Kara ​[Because there aren't any commas bracketing "Kara," you're saying there is more than one older sister.] wouldn’t touch anything that might result in work ​[I don't understand "might result in work." Do you mean she won't touch anything that resembles ​work?], not even after the sickness tore through Autain three months ago.

Pushing open the door to Ma’s room, fresh incense and heat blasted in our faces. My hair billowed in the updraft and I tucked it back in place.

A lump of dread formed in my stomach when I saw Ma. She was lying on a fluffed-up bed, as she had has been for the last two weeks. Her chest rose and fall with each labored breath. Whimpers rose from her blue-tinged mouth, and when I placed a hand on her forehead, her skin was ice-cold despite the heat in the room. My own forehead dripped with sweat, so did Elodie’s, but Ma’s skin was as cold as the northern winds beyond the mountains. I removed my hand from Ma’s forehead as a chill wormed its way into my fingers.

Unnatural.


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#3 Timejockey

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Posted 17 December 2017 - 09:16 AM

This is my reworked introduction to my WIP novel, all 250 words of it. I return critiques as well, and also am seeking critiques for my query and synopsis, and if you took a look at them I would be really thankful! 

 

 

A scream pierced the cabin and I jolted from a trance by the hearth. Elodie, my little sister, rushed down the stairs with her dark braids flying behind her. (maybe restructure this a bit because it reads a bit awkward to me, something like "My little sister Elodie rushed down the stairs, her dark braids flying behind her")

“Nyssa, it’s Ma,” she gasped.

Lurching (maybe a different word? Lurching doesn't seem to fit with the quick movement up the stairs in the next part) to my feet, I hastened up the stairs with Elodie close behind. Her nightgown rustled as she walked. Although her dress was worn, patched together with Ma’s deft hands like everything else we have, I know it brought her comfort. At least, Ma used to repair them, but it’s been my job as of late, along with all the other chores around the house. Our older sister Kara wouldn’t touch anything that might result in work, not even after the sickness tore through Autain three months ago. (This feels like a good detail, but considering the tension it also feels like it might work better in a different part. I would focus on the immediate scene and concern about Ma)

Pushing open the door to Ma’s room, fresh incense and heat blasted in our faces. My hair billowed in the updraft and I tucked it back in place.

A lump of dread formed in my stomach when I saw Ma. She was lying on a fluffed-up bed, as she has been for the last two weeks. Her chest rose and fall with each labored breath. Whimpers rose from her blue-tinged mouth, and when I placed a hand on her forehead, her skin was ice-cold despite the heat in the room. My own forehead dripped with sweat, so did Elodie’s, but Ma’s skin was as cold as the northern winds beyond the mountains. I removed my hand from Ma’s forehead as a chill wormed its way into my fingers.

Unnatural.

I like the feel of tension you have here, getting into the action and story immediately, but there are a few extra details that draw away from that. I would stick to the action and then use those details at a later point. Hope this helps!



#4 mzbritney12

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Posted 18 December 2017 - 11:15 PM

This is my reworked introduction to my WIP novel, all 250 words of it. I return critiques as well, and also am seeking critiques for my query and synopsis, and if you took a look at them I would be really thankful! 

 

 

A scream pierced the cabin and I jolted from a trance by the hearth. (Yas! Awesome opening) Elodie (Super cool name, by the way), my little sister, rushed down the stairs with her dark braids flying behind her.

“Nyssa, it’s Ma,(this should actually be a period--mostly just because she can't gasp and say that whole sentence at once. The gasp either comes before the sentence or after.)” she gasped.

Lurching to my feet, I hastened up the stairs with Elodie close behind. Her nightgown rustled as she walked. Although her dress was worn, patched together with Ma’s deft hands like everything else we have, I know it brought her comfort. At least, Ma used to repair them, but it’s been my job as of late, along with all the other chores around the house. Our older sister Kara wouldn’t touch anything that might result in work, not even after the sickness tore through Autain three months ago. (Hmm--very interesting concept. Gives off a Hunger Games theme.) 

Pushing open the door to Ma’s room(passive voice possibly? There's no one doing the action in this sentence), fresh incense and heat blasted in our faces. My hair billowed in the updraft and I tucked it back in place.

A lump of dread formed in my stomach when I saw Ma. She was lying on a fluffed-up bed, as she has been for the last two weeks. Her chest rose and fall (fell) with each labored breath. Whimpers rose (<--repeat word) from her blue-tinged mouth, and when I placed a hand on her forehead, her skin was ice-cold despite the heat in the room. My own forehead dripped with sweat, so did Elodie’s, but Ma’s skin was as cold as the northern winds beyond the mountains. I removed my hand from Ma’s forehead as a chill wormed its way into my fingers.

Unnatural.

 

 

Okay, so you've set up a really cool opening scene here. As a reader, I wanted to know more of what was happening. 

I do like your writing style, but I will say, at times, you can be a bit over-descriptive. It was distracting. I'm sure, by now, you've heard of the whole, "Show, don't tell."

I'm excited for what you do here!
I hope my comments were helpful!

Best of luck to you!


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