Monday, September 3, 2012

Super Special 250 Word Smash! #5

Sarah and I have had the best idea, and you readers are hopefully going to love it. It's no fair that we get all of the fun and you have to endure our awful stabs and backhands and endure the mean bullets we shoot at you when we trample all over your work and decide it looks better that way, right?

So we're about to change that.

In this newest edition of 250 Words, I will be smashing up Sarah's opening!

That's right, this is the first 250 words to Sarah's project Dance in Shadow and Whisper. This is tough, I'll have to pretend I haven't already read five different incarnations of this book and that I don't already have very personal relationships with all of the characters, so personal that I speak to them on a daily basis and have nicknames for them.

Oh god, this is tough. I don't know if I can do it.

Yes I can.

Author/Not an Editor this time: Sarah
Editor: Victoria

My chest tightened with one final deep breath. I stared at the door handle, simple brass and weathered from its once gossamer brilliance. This whole mission was a joke. I was the joke. There were so many others much more capable than me, others who could handle the foreign outside world. Damn it, I was lucky if I could handle silencing an incoming call on my brother’s cellular telephone gadget.
The doorbell chimed. A disarming melody lulled throughout the house and echoed shrilly in my brain.
It was too late now.
My arm lifted, but my moist palm stopped just short of the sweep of the handle when I saw how my fingers quivered. I hadn’t noticed until then.
There was no reason to be afraid—concerned, perhaps, for my personal wellbeing, but afraid?
Certainly not.
If I had to, I could hole-punch this guy through the chest with my fist.
For now, I settled with clamping my fingers around the cool handle and very deliberately twisting. The door popped open. The fresh, crisp light of early morning flooded the hallway.
There he stood, the embodiment of my fear and apprehension and sweaty palms. He stood nearly half a foot over me, tall for something that had once been human, but his skin was so white that he could pass more for a glowstick than any human I’d ever seen.

(She gave me another version that stopped with the door opening, but I chose this one because the other stops short of introducing my favorite character obviously)

Strong Points --
You've done what you love best, and that's starting us with one hell of a hook. All of these questions, little tidbits of background information woven into Kali's thoughts so seamlessly, they're very natural. I'm not being pounded over the head with all this background information, I'm put right into the story.

Also, we have a great idea of Kali's voice and how she speaks. We already know some about her just from these first words, we know she's super strong, we know she isn't very comfortable with the world outside of her comfy little home, we know she has at least one brother. You've fed us just enough information to keep us wanting more, like WTH is this mission thang? And why'd she answer the door for a human glowstick that's no longer human?

I may be biased, but I also believe you've done a wonderful job with making Kali likable right off the bat. I mean, I'm already endeared to her, just from hearing her silly Kali thoughts. But perhaps this is a question for the readers instead.

I know it's not the action-packed opening you're used to, but I think you began this story just where it needs to begin.

Some Tips -- You did a whole lot emphasizing just how nervous Kali is, you could probably pull back on that or disperse it some. I see her sweaty palms mentioned twice just within this short passage. I get that she is positively freaking out, you do a wonderful job already in communicating such through the little gestures of her shivering fingers and her self doubt, and I know for a fact you can get a little more creative with describing her terror than just a double mention of sweaty palms.

Also, why is she standing at the door before it's rang. I know. I know Kali might have heard him approaching--then again, she might not have. Either way, it seems silly to start with her ready for action at the door before the action has entirely begun.

After that, my problems are nitpicking problems, things like "lulled" and "shrilly" contrasting each other too much to make sense (and, in all honesty, Kali's family might have a doorbell that's more friendly on their ears).

Would I keep reading?

I already have! Yes! This is one hell of a solid opening if you ask me. You've already started to build some tension and gotten me asking questions like why my favorite character hasn't spoken yet. It's not an explosion or something openly flashy, but this proves that a good introduction doesn't have to be in order to grab your reader's attention. <3



    1. SHE DOESN'T TAKE PRESSURE VERY WELL OKAY. And Yuufa will make anyone nervous, give them doubly sweaty palms.

      Oops, who said that? Not me.

    2. hahahaHAHAHA he doesn't make anyone nervousssss. There are a few characters in that there story that could make someone nervous, but he's not one of those charactersssss.

    3. Okay, so ANYONE wasn't the right word. I know a few times where he made Kali pretty nervous though, if you catch my drift. It's a pretty big drift, too. Huhuhuhuhuh.

    4. Huhuhuhuh what is this even. Don't we have school tomorrow or something? And aren't we kinda sitting right beside each other?

      And whatchoo talkin bout? Kali makes HIS palms sweat. Pretty big palms, too, if you catch my drift. Huhuhuhuh.

      We're adults.

    5. Geeze, censor yourself. No one wants to hear about Kali's man hands except Yuufa, okay?

      And maybe Ave.

      But she's not here (YAH RITE)

    6. If we had any followers, we might have lost them.

      Except for Anna. I guess she counts.

    7. Probably. I guess we can count her, since she's probably all we have left after this.

    8. okay we're ACTUALLY GOING TO BED NOW. Five-hour class tomorrow and junk. Plenty of time to talk about Kali's hands then.

      And we probably will.

  2. MAN HANDS. (/dying) Kali's yaoi hands. Giggle-snort.

    While I'm here, I might want to mention that it was hard for me to tell that Kali was inside until the moment she actually saw Yuufa standing on the porch. I thought, for the longest time, she was standing outside his door and then rang the doorbell and pulled open the door herself and I went "well this is a change I thought Yuufa picked her up".

    Also I love both of you and I can't wait to see you and yeah.

    1. Also, there, I am now an OFFICIAL follower. you can never quit me.