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#1 SnowFox23

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 04:37 AM

I love my sister, but I hate it when she tries to poison me. She nearly killed me last week, and I spent the entire weekend in the bed we shared together, sweating out the poison arrowroot she had lovingly fed me. On Friday evening, I thrashed out against the monsters from my vivid fever dreams, but by Sunday morning I welcomed them in. The poison claimed me for itself, shutting down my organs like someone turning off light switches. Mom had lain awake beside me for three days, feeling my forehead every ten minutes and calling my name in a voice that was stained with terror. She did not call a doctor and I did not expect her to, but I felt the betrayal just the same.

 

When I finally awoke this Tuesday morning, my skin was red and blistered and oozed out a clear liquid that smelt like rotting plums. I inspected my wounds with concealed anger while Lexie stood at our doorway and watched me approvingly.

 

“You’re alive,” she said chirpily. “I knew you’d make it.” But her voice suggested otherwise. I had ignored her, and poked at the liquid that seeped from my blisters and felt the burn of it on my fingertips.

 

“Lexie. Lexie,” I murmured drowsily, never taking my eyes from my wounds. “What have you done to me?”

But she didn’t answer me. Wouldn’t.  

 

It was a familiar question in our house, Lexie, what have you done? Lexie, what did you do? Lexie, why did you poison the Holloway girl, she was too young to die.



#2 DisgruntledWriter

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 07:27 AM

I like this, but the only thing missing from it was a sense of setting. Is this modern day? The past? A different world? I’m assuming one of the last two, but it distracted me throughout trying to figure out where and when these characters were. Maybe some details of their house thrown in here and there so the reader has something to ground themselves in? Other than that, this is really solid. Leaves me very curious and wanting to read more about this crazy little sister.

#3 lnloft

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 06:58 PM

I love my sister, but I hate it when she tries to poison me. Great opening line. She nearly killed me last week, and I spent the entire weekend in the bed we shared together, sweating out the poison arrowroot she had lovingly fed me. On Friday evening, I thrashed out against the monsters from my vivid fever dreams, but by Sunday morning I welcomed them in. I'm not quite clear on what this sentence means. The poison claimed me for itself, shutting down my organs like someone turning off light switches. Mom had lain awake beside me for three days, feeling my forehead every ten minutes and calling my name in a voice that was stained with terror. She did not call a doctor and I did not expect her to, but I felt the betrayal just the same.

 

When I finally awoke this Tuesday morning, my skin was red and blistered and oozed out a clear liquid that smelt like rotting plums. I inspected my wounds with concealed anger while Lexie stood at our doorway and watched me approvingly.

 

“You’re alive,” she said chirpily. “I knew you’d make it.” But her voice suggested otherwise. I had ignored her, and poked at the liquid that seeped from my blisters and felt the burn of it on my fingertips.

 

“Lexie. Lexie,” I murmured drowsily, never taking my eyes from my wounds. “What have you done to me?”

But she didn’t answer me. Wouldn’t.  

 

It was a familiar question in our house, Lexie, what have you done? Lexie, what did you do? Lexie, why did you poison the Holloway girl, she was too young to die.

This is good. A little more grounding might help, although I have a feeling I might already feel a little clearer if I had read the back cover to provide a little more context, so I would tread carefully so as not to get bogged down, because you don't want to mess too much with a good thing. A little bit of context of their setting might help, even, like what kind of house they live in, so: "I spent the entire weekend trapped in our two-bedroom shack/suburban ranch house/giant flippin' castle, lying weak in the bed we shared and sweating out..." That's just one thought, and at least for me I think something like that would be enough to tide me over until later. Because, again, I don't want you messing too much with it when most of it is working really well.

 

The other thing I noticed is that both of your dialogue tags included adverbs: "she said chirpily"; "I murmured drowsily"; and that's following right after "watched me approvingly". I think adverbs have their place in writing, but I'd cut at least one of those, maybe find a way to write around it. Maybe, "I murmured, my fluttering eyes never leaving my wounds". Just providing some examples to show what I'm getting at, but go at it however works best for your characters and voice.


Nothing to reciprocate on right now; I'm off in the query trenches.


#4 SnowFox23

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Posted 05 June 2018 - 10:51 PM

Thanks guys for your valuable input.

 

This story is just a WIP at the moment. I'm not sure if I will take it further but I appreciate your comments anyway.



#5 RobotKitten

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 12:20 PM

I like it overall, but like the others said, I don't have a sense of place here, and that's disorienting.  Wow, so Lexi's a psycho and mom's compliant in it?  I'm not sure what's going on here quite yet, but it's giving me shivers!  I'd love to read more.  This story reminds me of that old Nick Cave song, "The Curse of Millhaven."

 

----

 

I love my sister, but I hate it when she tries to poison me. (Yikes! Now there's a hook!) She nearly killed me last week, and I spent the entire weekend in the bed we shared together, sweating out the poison arrowroot she had lovingly fed me (The first line gives me the impression that the MC is used to this sort of thing... how did her sister manage to get her to eat the arrowroot?)  On Friday evening, I thrashed out against the monsters from my vivid fever dreams, but by Sunday morning I welcomed them in. (Great line!)  The poison claimed me for itself, shutting down my organs like someone turning off light switches. Mom had lain awake beside me for three days, feeling my forehead every ten minutes and calling my name in a voice that was stained with terror. She did not call a doctor and I did not expect her to, but I felt the betrayal just the same. (Another great line - I like how it tells so much with so few words. Nicely creepy.)

 

When I finally awoke this Tuesday morning, my skin was red and blistered and oozed out a clear liquid that smelt like rotting plums. I inspected my wounds with concealed anger while Lexie stood at our doorway and watched me approvingly. (I'd like to see Lexi doing something like popping gum or playing with a yo-yo, an action to show just how casual she's feeling about all of this.)

 

“You’re alive,” she said chirpily. “I knew you’d make it.” But her voice suggested otherwise. I had ignored her, and poked at the liquid that seeped from my blisters and felt the burn of it on my fingertips.

 

“Lexie. Lexie,” I murmured drowsily, never taking my eyes from my wounds. “What have you done to me?”

But she didn’t answer me. Wouldn’t.  (Instead of telling, I'd show... "But she just stood there, popping her gum, grinning," or something of the like.)

 

It was a familiar question in our house, Lexie, what have you done? Lexie, what did you do? Lexie, why did you poison the Holloway girl, she was too young to die. (Shivers! Deliciously disturbing!  However, I would break these sentences up just a little. "It was a familiar question in our house: "Lexie, what have you done?" Lexie, what did you do?" "Lexie, why did you poison the Holloway girl? She was too young to die."  -- Also, this last bit - "she was too young to die." That's intriguing. Makes me wonder WHY Mom would choose those particular words.)



#6 SnowFox23

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 11:36 PM

Omg RobotKitten! It's so freaky when you said it reminds you of Nick Caves, The Curse of Millhaven! With every manuscript I write I always choose a specific playlist that helps establish mood. And the playlist for this book is all Nick Cave. Specifically, Red right hand, and the curse of millhaven.

That really tripped me out in the coolest way.

 

Thank you so much for your comments. I am really struggling with depression at the moment and I can't bring myself to write. My last manuscript was my baby and it is not querying well at the moment. I had a full request last week, and I don't even have the motivation to send it out.

Thanks again, though. It was nice to hear your comments :)



#7 RobotKitten

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Posted 15 June 2018 - 06:51 AM

OMG. That's so sweet. Well, must mean you're on the right track, then, if you can convey that feeling right off the bat!

 

Best of wishes to you, and I hope you can chase that depression-monster away. I think you have a great start on a story here, and hope to see more. :)



#8 DisgruntledWriter

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Posted 15 June 2018 - 12:58 PM

Omg RobotKitten! It's so freaky when you said it reminds you of Nick Caves, The Curse of Millhaven! With every manuscript I write I always choose a specific playlist that helps establish mood. And the playlist for this book is all Nick Cave. Specifically, Red right hand, and the curse of millhaven.

That really tripped me out in the coolest way.

 

Thank you so much for your comments. I am really struggling with depression at the moment and I can't bring myself to write. My last manuscript was my baby and it is not querying well at the moment. I had a full request last week, and I don't even have the motivation to send it out.

Thanks again, though. It was nice to hear your comments :)

 

Sorry to hear you're having such a shitty time lately. I've been struggling recently too, and what you wrote is pretty much word-for-word how I feel, so you're not alone :) I think "Writer's Depression" needs to be added to the DSM asap.






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