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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Fragments and Feedback for Short Works » The Gambler's Knife - Revisited

   
Author Topic: The Gambler's Knife - Revisited
genevive42
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I posted a similar intro a few week ago but the story I wrote and the opening didn't match so I'm taking another shot at it. As per some suggestions I've given a little more of the pertinent info in this opening.

Let me know what you think. Thanks.


In the center of the table, within easy arm’s reach my salvation waited. The silver and obsidian hilt of the Dagger of Babylon sparkled and teased while the embedded rubies winked at me. I could’ve taken it by force but there were far too many evil thoughts buzzing around this unholiest of bars for me to be unnecessarily reckless. Especially when all I had to do was win this hand.
My cards lay face down in front of me in a neat stack. I had looked at them once but would not show weakness by looking again. The cards didn’t matter. If I could bluff my way into taking this pot I was golden. The demonic blood in my veins gave me the power to see the cards each player was holding. What it couldn’t tell me was what they were planning to do with them.


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Ben Trovato
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"In the center of the table, within easy arm’s reach my salvation waited."

This sentence is a good hook--salvation, within arm's reach--but it's in the passive voice, which defuses it a little. The description in the next sentence also defuses the sense of importance when looked at next to the "I could have taken it by force, but" in the next sentence. Maybe move the description down a little, or omit it if it's not really important that there are rubies in the Dagger of Babylon's hilt.
The only other snag I see is informing us point-blank, before we even know the narrator's name, that his demonic blood gives him sepecial card-cheating powers.

It's an interesting opening. I'd read the whole thing if you want to send it.


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NoTimeToThink
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I like the opening and would read more. Two comments:
I find "unnecessarily" adds nothing to the sentence, and makes it feel awkward. Just remove it.
I am curious as to what difference it makes that he knows everyone's cards, but not their intentions. He just has to outbid everyone else. It will be interesting to see how you play it.
If you need a reader count me in.

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genevive42
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Thanks Ben and NoTime.

I will send it when it's ready. I'm still sort of in the middle of it. But hopefully soon.


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Denem
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I like this. Nothing like a high-stakes game of poker to get the juices flowing.
A couple of things. I would end the second sentence at 'teased'. I think it carries a little more weight that way.
I also think the 'If I could bluff my way...' sentence a little choppy, consider rewording.
Put me down for a read if you like.

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alliedfive
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This open solves a major issue I had with the first third of the story, and you didn't lose any of the charm of this scene. Nice job.
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genevive42
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Thanks allied. When I send the rewrite you'll see that a lot has changed. The opening and a little beyond remain mostly intact. And I kept a few elements of atmosphere and action later on but it is really a whole new story.

I'm working on the wrap up now and will send it to everyone who's offered to read as soon as it's ready.

I do appreciate everyone's help and comments.


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monstewer
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And don't forget to send me the new version, too
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genevive42
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I hadn't forgotten monstewer. It's on its way. Thanks.
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