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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Fragments and Feedback for Short Works » Need Readers for my WIP

   
Author Topic: Need Readers for my WIP
Crystal Stevens
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I finally finished my current story and am into the 2nd draft. I'll warn you that this is long for a short work. I've managed to whittle it down to about 12,500 words so far. I'm mainly after readers for the whole story, but here's the 1st 13 that I've posted before:
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Excitement raced through Charlie with her mare’s every stride. They rounded a bend. What the hell? A naked man gaping at Charlie reflected her own shock.

“Whoa!” she yelled, leaned back, and tightened the reins. No good. The mare’s momentum knocked the man into the brush, but what was this? An electric shimmer formed about her with a vibrant hum.

The forest vanished, and the shimmer faded to reveal some kind of workshop. Another man looked up from a console and joined the ranks of the shocked. His gaze drifted behind Charlie. She looked too and screamed, again and again and again. The man tried to shout above the screams before giving up. In time she screamed herself out.
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Corky
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If we're in Charlie's head (POV) for the first two paragraphs, why do we suddenly shift out when she looks behind her? Why not tell us what she sees that makes her scream?

(Makes me wonder if she's still on her mare, and if not, maybe what she sees behind her is that mare eviscerated by whatever it was that transferred her to the workshop.)

Again, why not tell us what is making her scream?


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Crystal Stevens
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I never realized the shift in the 3rd paragraph. Thanks, Corky, for pointing that out. Like I said, this is a work-in-progress. I have the story down. Now I need someone to read it to make sure everything works as a whole. Then I'll start editing the smaller details.

The reason it's not necessary to tell what Charlie sees behind her is because the story's title has already done that. I'm aiming this story for the WotF contest, and as such, I don't want to reveal my title on a public forum. Are you interested in reading all or part of this story? The title will be included when I send the story to readers.


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WriteRebekah
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I too am curious as to what she saw back there! You've done a great job getting her complete shock across. I particularly like the way she "screamed herself out"--a memorable description.

Something you might want to think about is fleshing out the first couple of sentences. We've just wrapped our brains around Charlie's (love the name) being a female person and that she's riding a horse, when all of a sudden there's a second character who is en deshabille. (Did I spell "naked" right?) That's a lot of details right up front. Adding just a little more--maybe letting us see what Charlie looks like and more of just how much she's loving this ride--might help the reader feel shock along with her and minimize the chance of confusion. Just a thought.

(If I bake you a fresh, imaginary batch of chocolate chip cookies, will you let me in on the secret??)


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RyanRussellLunde
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I'm interested in critiquing this story also. I understand how you just want critiques for the story for now to see if it works so I'll just stick to that on this one. I'll leave your other story for critiquing the composition (for my own practice as well) if you would like to send them both.
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