Author Topic: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?  (Read 778007 times)

Lin

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #450 on: February 12, 2008, 01:37:53 PM »
Yes it was good, I did want to keep reading.   I think the line in brackets could be modified, I felt the brackets took the reader away from the flow.  The words dirty great big could be changed as well perhaps, I never like the words great big together.  Riffles should  be rifles.

To give this more punch I feel you could use more punchy words and changing your lines around a little to flow easier.

Your version
In a moment everything changed.  No longer the sound of the terrifying artillery barrage that boomed over their trench, peppering the landscape, (not thirty yards away from them) with dirty great big craters, shaking the ground on which they stood, and themselves to the core.  But now silence, apart from the sound of the bitter wind which whistled over the top of the trench, blowing with it the fine sleety snow that had started falling earlier that morning, when Albert was on his watch.  And the odd crack of fire, coming from sniper riffles on both the German and Allied sides.

I would have written this like so.

In a moment everything changed. No longer the sound of the artillery that boomed over their trench, there was now an overwhelming silence. Craters and peppered landscape from grenades which had shaken the ground only moments before, gave way to icy wind, whistling above their heads and  with the falling sleet, wet and cold, Albert shivered on his watch. He laid low as the occasional crack of a sniper on both German and Allied sides.....................  (whatever you wish to put here)

I wondered how you felt about this - it certainly does have spirit, but if I was a publisher I think I would want to see something a little more punchy.  Sometimes we write too much when less creates more impact.

Good luck with this.

Lin x x

Offline thatollie

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #451 on: February 13, 2008, 11:11:10 AM »
The movie industry becomes dull when you've seen the glue holding the smiles in place.
Never make a decision standing up.

Offline Don

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #452 on: February 13, 2008, 11:07:14 PM »
Quote
Whack, thud, they screamed.

Did they scream whack & thud or are these the sounds of bad things happening that made them scream?

Whack!  Thud!  They screamed.

Quote
The movie industry becomes dull when you've seen the glue holding the smiles in place.

Ya think?  If you're seeing the glue, the industry certainly would have become transparent.  Yeah, I guess that would be kinda dull.
I have a motto: when in doubt, go for the cheap laugh.

Offline thatollie

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #453 on: February 14, 2008, 05:28:33 AM »
You're only saying that because I towed your car.
Never make a decision standing up.

Offline oreenscott

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more? FFEDBACK FORUM
« Reply #454 on: February 14, 2008, 05:56:09 AM »
Okay I'll try

'I had settled, I knew that.  I wasn't stupid, but where the hell was that punch in the chest, the melting of my limbs?.  All the films said that when you were least expecting it, he would appear and you wouldn't even know he would be the one for you, the one who's kiss would take your breathe away, would leave you begging for more.  Hell, I hate Hollywood!!' 

I'm confused.  A punch in the chest sounds like violence, abuse.  Melting of my limbs sounds like swooning.  All the films etc. . . I'm not so sure that's what the films say.  Hell, I hate Hollywood doesn't feel like the ending of this paragraph.  I think you are trying to say you settled for someone you didn't love in the romantic, Hollywood way, and the relationship leaves you wanting more because Hollywood claims you should want something else.  If that is what you are saying the topic might be a grabber, but the paragraph, in my opinion needs work.
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Offline jojohnson

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #455 on: February 14, 2008, 06:46:46 AM »
Here'smy first lines of a story I've had kicking about in my head for a while now...

'Sounds like a twat to me' scoffed Kat, who was sitting on the window sill muching Wotsits.
'You say that about every bloke I meet' sighed Jeannie feeling despondant. Her love life had always been the brunt of everyone else's jokes. She couldn't help it if she attracted the worst of the left overs that no-one else wanted.

Lin

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #456 on: February 14, 2008, 08:06:14 AM »
Yes yes, I did like this it got me straight into the story.  Dont forget the typo on Munching.. I think despondant is  despondent.

I did like the idea of her love life being the brunt of everyone's jokes.   It painted a picture in my head.   Also the munching of the Wotsits.

Well done, if I was a publisher I would want to read more.

Lin x x x




Offline thatollie

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #457 on: March 22, 2008, 10:04:50 PM »
Is this what I did before memory 1?
Never make a decision standing up.

Offline Don

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #458 on: March 23, 2008, 12:15:35 AM »
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Is this what I did before memory 1?

Interesting, Ollie.  Sounds futuristic.  The thought of an android, perhaps?  Actually, that would work as the opening paragraph.

Here's my humble offering:

Max Moxie thumbed the hammer of the Smith & Wesson .38 and let it drop on an empty chamber.  The mechanism was smooth and the balance was perfect.  A car turned at the corner, its lights dully reflecting off the well-oiled barrel.  Just a tool of the trade, Max thought, sliding the revolver back into the pocket of his trenchcoat and stepping back further into the shadows.
I have a motto: when in doubt, go for the cheap laugh.

Offline annilor

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #459 on: March 23, 2008, 11:21:53 AM »
Great idea, how about this one:

SHE read what she had written in her diary.

I have received threatening phone calls but could not place who was speaking. I fear for my life.   

Jane Horswell was a professional 30-year-old art dealer, and had recently become involved with Peter Bench the local gallery owner. She knew that he was married, but what the hell, life is short. She worked hard to make her money and she enjoyed her life style.

Offline Foxy

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #460 on: March 23, 2008, 11:34:30 AM »
I like it, Don, I know exactly where I am and what I'm going to get from the story. The paragraph flows well and is easy to read.

If I was going to suggest changing anything--and this is only a suggestion--I'd drop the Just a tool of the trade line, because you've already shown us he's a pro by describing the gun's mechanism and well oiled barrel etc. To me that does enough, but that's only my opinion, others may feel differently.
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Offline Don

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #461 on: March 23, 2008, 11:49:53 AM »
Excellent advice from a fellow noir writer.  How's the book coming, Patrick?  I dropped "of the trade" and it sounds much better.  I have a murder and a beating in the first thousand words, and then things turn violent.  This is so much fun. :) 
I have a motto: when in doubt, go for the cheap laugh.

Offline thatollie

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #462 on: March 23, 2008, 01:07:54 PM »
Quote
Interesting, Ollie.  Sounds futuristic.  The thought of an android, perhaps?  Actually, that would work as the opening paragraph.

Amnesiac hobo, actually.
Thanks for taking a look.
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Offline Foxy

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #463 on: March 23, 2008, 03:02:30 PM »
The story sounds great, Don, I hope you post some of it here...definitely not enough noir on these boards.

Work on my book has stopped again, temporarily, while I try to find an agent or publisher for my completed novel.
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Offline Don

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Re: First Liners - Would a publisher want to read more?
« Reply #464 on: March 29, 2008, 06:55:11 PM »
You've certainly created some tension, Solitaire.  I would absolutely read further, if for no other reason than to find out what the relationship is between the conductor and the pianist. 

I would get rid of the all-caps style in the first line of dialogue.  Yes, the conductor is upset but you could arrange it differently.

The conductor's face flushed crimson.  "You are pounding that keyboard like a bloody mechanic."

Members of the ensemble etc...

There was a story in Ploughshares last year called Eleanor's Music that featured a similarly tense scene between a musical director and a member of the chorus.  Your scene, I think, offers more possibilities but this story might be worth a lookup and a read.
I have a motto: when in doubt, go for the cheap laugh.