Hatrack River
Home   |   About Orson Scott Card   |   News & Reviews   |   OSC Library   |   Forums   |   Contact   |   Links
Research Area   |   Writing Lessons   |   Writers Workshops   |   OSC at SVU   |   Calendar   |   Store
E-mail this page
Hatrack River Writers Workshop Post New Topic  Post A Reply
my profile login | register | search | faq | forum home

  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Fragments and Feedback for Short Works » The Thaw Version 2.0

   
Author Topic: The Thaw Version 2.0
Merlion-Emrys
Member
Member # 7912

 - posted      Profile for Merlion-Emrys   Email Merlion-Emrys         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
So I'm doing some restructuring on this story, trying to cut down the early portions a bit, and so I decided to start in a slightly different place. Unusually for me, I'm mostly looking for thoughts and suggestions on the opening...the rest of the story is pretty much how I want it, I'm now mostly just figuring out how much of the beginning of the previous version to trim and what if any tweaks to make as it becomes the beginning rather than a little ways in. That being said, I never turn down offers for a full read and general thoughts on a story.


“That will be all for today, boys,” Arjaf said. “But, Eroseph, I want to speak to you for a bit, alone, please.”
“All right,” I said. My heart sunk, knowing what my magic teacher wanted to talk about and dreading what he might say.
“I’ll meet you outside, Ero,” Kyefyn said, heading for the door. Tall, with a mop of wild sandy hair and bright eyes as blue as his magic, he was the most beautiful person alive, if you asked me. No, that’s not right. If you asked me, I wouldn’t have said that. If asked who I thought was the most beautiful person in the world, I’d have picked the name of some girl in town. But my thoughts would be of Kyefyn, my dearest friend and, along with finding my way onto the Purple Road, my greatest desire.


Slightly altered version


“That will be all for today, boys,” Arjaf said. “But, Eroseph, I want to speak to you for a bit, alone, please.”
“All right,” I said. My heart sunk, knowing what my magic teacher wanted to talk about and dreading what he might say.
“I’ll meet you outside, Ero,” Kyefyn said, heading for the door. Tall, with a mop of wild sandy hair and bright eyes as blue as his magic, he was the most beautiful person alive, if you asked me. No, that’s not right. If you asked me that, I’d have picked the name of some girl in town. But my thoughts would be of Kyefyn, my dearest friend. My greatest desire, along with finding my way onto the Purple Road, was that he and I become more than friends.
When he was gone, Arjaf motioned to a chair. “Sit.”

[ January 11, 2012, 09:58 PM: Message edited by: Merlion-Emrys ]

Posts: 2604 | Registered: Apr 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
babooher
Member
Member # 8617

 - posted      Profile for babooher   Email babooher         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
First off, I have no qualms about a gay protagonist, but I think having the gay kid finding his way on the Purple Road a little cutesy. It's like the Friends joke about serving chicken breasts at the reception for a lesbian couple.

Having said that, it is nice to see a male homosexual character who isn't discovering his sexuality but already knows it and has recognized that part of himself and how he has to live in his world.

Overall, I don't think the opening is a success for me. I don't care if the protagonist gets the boy or not, and being told to see the teacher after class doesn't grab me.

Finally, I think the writing that reveals Eroseph's desire for Kyefyn is pretty strong. I think the opening isn't the right place for it, but I'd try to fit it in elsewhere.

Posts: 704 | Registered: May 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Merlion-Emrys
Member
Member # 7912

 - posted      Profile for Merlion-Emrys   Email Merlion-Emrys         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
First off, I have no qualms about a gay protagonist, but I think having the gay kid finding his way on the Purple Road a little cutesy.
Be that as it may, their are story and characterization reasons for it...the rest is coincidence.


quote:
I don't care if the protagonist gets the boy or not,
Why, particularly, not?


quote:
I think the opening isn't the right place for it, but I'd try to fit it in elsewhere.
To the first part, why, once again, not? And to both parts...given that that is one of the two things the story is about, I think the whole story is more or less the right place for it...it's not something that gets fit in, its part of the whole narrative, beginning to end.

Thanks for commenting...it'd just be useful to also know why the things you said didn't work didn't work.

Posts: 2604 | Registered: Apr 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
babooher
Member
Member # 8617

 - posted      Profile for babooher   Email babooher         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
1. Coincidence or not, you're on the hook for it. You're still making the decision to run with it. Your story, your right, your responsibility.

2. Why should I care if he gets the boy? I don't know either and neither has done anything to endear himself to me.

3. Nothing exciting or particularly intriguing has happened. I see a kernel of something that has merit. I can see it is important to your character. I just don't think it is enough to make me want to read more. Therefore, I think the story needs something more interesting in the first 13 than what you have.

If it is all the perfect fit, by all means send it out and may it sell well.

Posts: 704 | Registered: May 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Merlion-Emrys
Member
Member # 7912

 - posted      Profile for Merlion-Emrys   Email Merlion-Emrys         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Coincidence or not, you're on the hook for it. Your story, your right, your responsibility.
Why is that? My Purple Road has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that some people in the gay community choose to identify with the color purple. I'm not sure what you mean by "on the hook" or what it is I'd be responsible for.

I don't think the connection had even occurred to me till you mentioned it, and there is no way to change it without telling a different story.

Posts: 2604 | Registered: Apr 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
babooher
Member
Member # 8617

 - posted      Profile for babooher   Email babooher         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
As I wrote before, if it is all the perfect fit, by all means send it out and may it sell well.
Posts: 704 | Registered: May 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Dame
Member
Member # 8513

 - posted      Profile for Dame   Email Dame         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Hi -

I think part of the reason it seems odd to get his attraction in so early on, is that in the first two lines you set up the teacher keeping him back in class. He is dreading what the teacher will say, and then blam, we are into another issue and our attention is hooked by the teacher problem so his attraction seems somehow a distraction. [Smile]

In terms of being tight with wordage; "No, that’s not right. If you asked me, I wouldn’t have said that. If asked who I thought was the most beautiful person in the world, I’d have picked the name of some girl in town..." This to me would seem smoother with a line or so cut - "No, that’s not right. If you asked me, I’d have picked the name of some girl in town." This would allow you to get to more interesting stuff a little quicker.

This all might be smoothed out if you cut that first reference to the purple road and introduce it in the subsequent conversation with the teacher. This might make the MC's attraction less overshadowing of the first challenge you set up (staying after class) - especially if you go straight into it immediately. You should then be able to get the gist of their conversation across in the first 13 lines and have a greater chance of hooking the reader with his dilemma.

Posts: 96 | Registered: Mar 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
micmcd
Member
Member # 7977

 - posted      Profile for micmcd   Email micmcd         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
my thoughts would be of Kyefyn, my dearest friend and, along with finding my way onto the Purple Road, my greatest desire
I had to read this sentence twice, and I'm still not sure I get it. If you asked him who the most beautiful person in the world, he'd answer Kyefyn (I get that)... and something about finding his way onto the Purple Road?

Edit - okay, I get now that Kyefyn and finding his way on the purple road are his greatest desires. But I think the structure is confusing. I get that he's in love with Kyefyn and that this isn't a gay-tolerant society from the first part, where his thoughts are with Kyefyn. Perhaps enumerating "being with Kyefyn" and "finding my way on the Purple Road" as his greatest desires deserves its own sentence.

In any case, I find the beginning interesting.

Posts: 499 | Registered: May 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Merlion-Emrys
Member
Member # 7912

 - posted      Profile for Merlion-Emrys   Email Merlion-Emrys         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Ahhh...comments with reasons and suggestions and suchlike. That's what I needed...thanks guys.
Posts: 2604 | Registered: Apr 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

Quick Reply
Message:

HTML is not enabled.
UBB Code™ is enabled.
UBB Code™ Images not permitted.
Instant Graemlins
   


Post New Topic  Post A Reply Close Topic   Feature Topic   Move Topic   Delete Topic next oldest topic   next newest topic
 - Printer-friendly view of this topic
Hop To:


Contact Us | Hatrack River Home Page

Copyright © 2008 Hatrack River Enterprises Inc. All rights reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.


Powered by Infopop Corporation
UBB.classic™ 6.7.2