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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Fragments and Feedback for Short Works » The Pagan Razor

   
Author Topic: The Pagan Razor
Uley Bone
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Come somewhat from having read the thread about a new series, and a modernization of the old Sherlock Holmes series, set my head to rolling this idea around, and I had combined it up with an older idea. The original theory was to create something of a post-apocalyptic, steam-punk tale set in modern day Montreal, Canada. Quite a few things have occurred between the modern day and the setting of the story, which lends toward some of the why that even the more highly educated of the citizens, who had lived in the new city all of their lives, are mostly unaware of what had been there before.

That's the set up, and the opening chapter is titled Old Blood.

Uley

===========================================


“I trust that you know what this is?” Colonel Morgan Jacks handed the simple folded blade, which appeared to be nothing more than a shaving razor from one of the old officer’s packs. Originally, I had seen nothing to make it appear in any way distinct, save the initials on the sheathing cover and that it appeared to be old and corroded. Yet the corrosion, which flaked off into the palm and fingertips of my hand, still held some of the reddish hues within, like a wound which had been scabbed over.

“One of your young officers have the jitters Sir?” I was a little surprised to discover that I had not lost all of my military bearing since becoming an independent civilian. By most standards, Colonel Jacks was considered to be a military hero,

[ November 29, 2011, 12:42 PM: Message edited by: Kathleen Dalton Woodbury ]

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Kathleen Dalton Woodbury
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Uley Bone, please read this topic .
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Bent Tree
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Considering this is a first person account, I might suggest that you begin with a line that establishes this a little more.

quote:
Colonel Morgan Jacks(#1) handed the simple folded blade, which appeared to be nothing more than a shaving razor from one of the old officer’s packs. Originally, I had seen nothing to make it appear in any way distinct, save the initials on the sheathing cover and that it appeared to be old and corroded.
#1 There appears to be no subject to whom the knife is handed.

#2 There is nothing wrong with beginning this with a dialogue starting with another character, but I feel the first sentence after should be clarified to establish the POV

Example:

"Stop shouting!" Clarice always had a way of intimidating me

#3 I always push harder and harder to deepen POV with a first person account. I really did like the voice here in this character. It felt really fitting and natural. Just be mindful that that is the make or break for narration in the first. It only takes a few instances of slips or a bit of slackening on POV to really turn off a reader.

quote:

“One of your young officers have the jitters Sir?” I was a little surprised to discover that I had not lost all of my military bearing since becoming an independent civilian.

To me, this seems to be begging the cause. I do not understand how this dialogue brought him to this statement. Makes him sound arrogant and quick to conclusion. Based on your non-story introduction, I can determine that this is likely the goal as he, I am assuming, will be a "Sherlock" type character.

quote:
By most standards, Colonel Jacks was considered to be a military hero,
Perhaps it is that this long sentence got cut off, but the subject, as of now does not seem to follow the paragraphs subject, but it might be where it was chopped.

Over all, I liked this. I was mildly lured by the hook. I think you might just really focus on Sharpening the POV. He, I assume is an observer of minute detail. I want to see, smell, hear, and taste him do this at every opportunity. I almost expect the lines to be punchy, half-thoughts, as his mind combs the scene.

Hope this helps...

Also if this is a novel. you may want to post it in novels instead

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Denevius
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hey uley, is this the beginning of a chapter of a novel, or a short story? eitehr way, if it's not too long, i'll take a look.

cheers!

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Uley Bone
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My apologies, a misinterpretation of the 13 lines. [Smile]

Thank you very much Bent Tree for all your help, and yes it most certainly did.

Hi Denevius. This is the opening for a probably longer than short story, which you are more than welcome to take a look at once I have it finished-- probably see if I can cut it back some as well once I have it written (keep it as a short story for now.) Thank you very much for the offer, and I will certainly get back to you once the story is ready.

smiles & waves
Uley

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annepin
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The voice doesn't really work for me. It comes off as stilted and forced. The set up was intriguing to me, though.
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