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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Fragments and Feedback for Short Works » The Keys to Happiness- work in process.

   
Author Topic: The Keys to Happiness- work in process.
pidream
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Re-write. All comments welcomed.
The old man laid at my feet, dead. It was just too easy. People never died that way on the Vid. He’d grabbed the old guy by his collar and slammed him, face first, into the wall. A muffled walnut cracking sound followed. He bounced off the wall and hit the pavement with a wet thwack and a jingle. He didn't scream or moan, just let out a long ragged breath and then nothing. I wondered if he was faking, so I gave him a sharp kick to the ribs but got no reaction. Oh god, all he’d wanted was for the crazy old bastard to tell him where his son was. His hands trembled, knees buckled as he fell against the wall. Not good . . . not good at all. How’d such a great day turned to crap so fast?

[ March 24, 2013, 11:54 PM: Message edited by: pidream ]

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babooher
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Are there three people in this scene; the old man, Jacob, and the narrator?

The mention of a jingle made me first think this was a mugging or robbery of some kind. Keys and coins jingle so I expected that to have something to do with the story (or else what jingled and why is that important?)

The rhetorical question at the end seems a bit jejune to me. It seems you're setting up for a flashback but you've already let us know that Jacob's son is missing and that Jacob is distressed enough to kill even if accidently. If more back story is needed I'd think you could accomplish it well enough in the dialogue.

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pidream
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No just the the old man and Jacob. I knew it was wrong but liked the sound of it- changed. Yes, the jingle is. Jejune- had to look that up. Rhetorical maybe but I will see what other's think before cutting it. Setting you up, yes, but in good way I hope. Many thanks.
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skadder
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Then you are mixing both 3rd and 1st. The way you have used 'I' isn't internal dialogue.

Consider:

He wondered if the old guy was faking, so he gave him a sharp kick...

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pidream
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Noted with thanks.
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SASpencer
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I think if he was smashed against the wall hard enough to die there would be some blood. Head wounds bleed profusely. You'd have to take out the bit about thinking he was faking it, however. maybe just show the conflict in real time.
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pidream
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Thanks SAS. I did some research before writing, and most of the information pointed to a traumatic blow against flat surface i.e. brick wall to the frontal lobe would cause, if hit hard enough, immediate unconsciousness, skull fragments being driven into the brain and in most cases instant death. Yeah, there might be some abrasions but almost no bleeding as the heart has stopped. Thanks for the keen-eyed observation though.
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SASpencer
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My head hurts.
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pidream
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Mine too, writing is hard work.
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