looking for round 2 readers for this - urban fantasy (I think), just under 5000 words. (anyone who read before and wants a second look is equally welcome)
Thanks R ----------------------
The library building was not what Sophie had expected. As she closed the car door and looked across the road, it appeared to be nothing more than a Georgian town house, positioned incongruously in the middle of a twenty first-century city centre. It was surrounded by a neatly tended garden, closed off from the world. The road between her parking space and her destination was jammed with traffic and she picked her way cautiously across. In the arch above the wrought iron gates, the name was interwoven with metal leaves â€“ Ayredale Special Collection. She stepped through the cool shadow, back into golden sunlight and the traffic sounds faded away, screened by high hedges of yew. It was like stepping into another world. She walked up the narrow path, past beds crowded with marigolds and geraniums, violent reds and golds.
The opening description is definitely a lot better, and seems to be more effective in concentrating on the impression of the place itself. There are still a few rough spots, but opinions will probably vary on them a bit. I would put "surrounded by a neatly tended garden" as direct description of "a Georgian town house", for instance. That would probably require moving "positioned...in...a...city centre" to a different sentence, and so forth.
I also hung on "road between" since that can read as "road connecting". I'd try "street between" or say she had to cross the busy street. Also, "In the arch above the..." strikes me as being somewhat graceless prose. Perhaps if one of the "the"s were replaced with the indefinite article. After all, this is the first appearence of both arch and gate (though you could mention the gate (and perhaps a fence or hedge) earlier, if you like).
As you can see, though, these are all pretty minor wordcraft nits, matters of individual taste rather than concrete issues. Overall, I'd like the description to be even a little richer, to give more sense of Ayredale's impact on Sophie. But it seems to work well as it is.
RF, I so apologize for not getting back to you with the crit on your first version. At the time I thought I had a day before we left for a vacation, but my hubby decided weâ€™d leave early -- and afterward we brought the grandkids here for their vacation, so I've not been mentally engaged. If you still need readers, please feel free to send your new version.
Posts: 1807 | Registered: Jun 2002
If you are still looking for readers I will be glad to. If you send it Microsoft Word then I can critique it line by line and send you the story back. Peace, Joe
Posts: 6 | Registered: Jul 2005