Author Topic: Outlook Part one 1977 words.  (Read 1491 times)

Offline Zack1995

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Outlook Part one 1977 words.
« on: July 29, 2013, 10:59:21 PM »
I felt air beneath me, and knew I was not walking on my own. I felt the arms around me, one behind my knees, and the other in the middle of my back they were strong, my weight never shifting, the arms never dipping even while walking. I tried to open my eyes, but I couldn't. My head was spinning, my ears ringing, and my throat was on fire. I kept swallowing, but it felt like it was closing over.

I was lightly placed down on the damp grass. that felt good on my burning skin.

"I love you, and wish that you have a wonderful life without me," said a gruff voice. I felt it. I loved him too. The words formed in my mind, but would not come through my mouth. I felt his hand, warm and smooth, caress my cheek, before it stopped on my forehead. I felt the warmth that it brought much too hot for normal skin. it felt nice, everything felt nice. I just hoped this would never end, even in this confusing moment it was bliss.

I opened my eyes looking up at the sun. It was brighter than I have ever seen before, even through the thick brush of trees. I closed my eyes, tightly feeling the pain it brought to my eyes and my head. Slowly I got up feeling dizzy, foggy, and confused. Standing made my head hurt worse, pounding with my heart thudding in my ears. My throat was burning feeling like I tried to swallow a hot poker. Why? Where was I? Who was I? All of these questions and more flew around my head but I had no answers for them.

My vision was full of black spots that took over half of my vision, from what I could see I was standing in the middle on a light forest. The trees were not that close together at the base but I could barely look up and see the sun through the trees said the small patch I was in when I first woke up. Even in the limited sunlight my eyes were killing me. Suddenly I was dizzy the world started spinning, trees and dirt flashing before me as my hands moved to my head just as the pain started. I felt nauseous I was not sure if it was from the spinning or if maybe I was just sick.

I felt the air whoosh through my hair; I opened my eyes only to see the ground coming up at me. In retrospect, I was most likely falling.

The second time that I woke up, things were different. Not better, but different. My eyes were not sore anymore, and the world was no longer spinning. My throat was monumentally, worse it felt like had completely closed over. The black dots were still there, but were translucent and in the background, they no longer covering my vision.

I got up slowly, leaning up against a nearby tree. I noticed two things: One that there was a road that didn't look very far away. I couldn't see where it leads to, but it must lead to some sort of civilization. The second thing I noticed was a set of tracks leading to the shape I made in the grass, and moving away into the forest.

This meant that I had two viable options. I could go down the hill and follow the road until I found people; this could be a long time. I could also follow the tracks. Someone was out here. I could find them, but might take a long time. Or I could never find them who knew how old those tracks were. I looked over my options. it wasn't long before I knew that I needed to take the road, as it was the option that didn't have the chance of me being mauled by a rabid animal.

Beating through the trees and bushes took much longer than I expected. What I thought was a short distance, turned out to be over a mile. It ended up taking me about fifteen minutes to get to the roads. On the way, I had tripped on a root scraping my palms and getting the knees of my jeans dirty.

The only thing I could see was the road meaning that I might have a long walk ahead of me but it was better than sitting up there all day where I was certain to not find people.

Walking was starting to become a chore; my legs were weak and rubbery beneath me. As always, my throat was killing me. I wished that I had something to drink.   

It was another two hours of walking before I noticed a town far off in the distance.

Everything seemed to grow worse as I entered the town. The flash of the headlights burned my eyes. Everyone going places, moving quickly along their way. No one noticed me staring at them, as I wondering what I was supposed to do. I smelled something sweet and alluring. That seemed to overpower all of my other senses. I couldn't find the source of this smell however and I was starting to get mad for some reason, my heart pounding as I walked out into the street.

I heard the screeching of the tires before I knew what was going on. I looked over to the car that was very close to me, the head lights again burning my eyes. I quickly got off of the streets daze and confused.

"Are you alright," a voice asked behind me sounding both chastising and concerned at the same time.

I turned quickly, hearing her voice cut through the chaos. The world started spinning again, as the sweet smell got even stronger. I backed up, my feet unsteady underneath me as I hit the wall. I was intimidated by this girl. She unlike me was okay with what was going on...

I noticed the girl take a step back, holding her hands up palms out a symbol of peace. I started breathing again without noticing that I had even stopped. My eyes darted back and forth watching the people walk down the street. The odd person would stop and look over staying to see the scene unfold.

I found myself sizing the girl up who stood in front of me, even though I had no intent of fighting her. She didn't seem all that tall. Shorter than I for sure she was 5'4 maybe. She had light brown hair with strands of golden blonde, and her eyes were dark and stared at me unflinchingly. She had a few skin imperfections that looked to be from her young age. That I guessed would be around sixteen.

"Hello, do you speak English," she asked me, waiting for her answer from the first question.

It was hard to form the words in my mind, even if I did. I was going to have trouble getting them out of my scorched throat. I knew however, that I had to try. I could not stay mute forever, standing here watching this girl stare at me, a crowd slowly forming behind her.

"Y...es," I wheezed out barely, auditable but I had spoken the words and I thought that she heard it. To me, right now, that was a victory.

"Okay." She said more to herself, than to me. "Are you okay do you need me to call for help." She asked me asking more than one question at a time, meaning I needed to answer more than one question at a time.

"Yes," I said again. It sounded better than the last time, but it was still lacking volume and still hurt a lot, but there was progress.   

I was very aware of the eyes that were on me, and it embarrassed me. I knew that I was the outsider here. I didn't see anyone else scared out of their wits, backed up to a wall, speaking broken sentences.

"Yes what, yes you are okay or yes you need help," she asked gently, snapping me out of my haze.

"Help." I spoke worse than the last two times. It was lacking volume and was painful, there goes my progress.

"Help. Okay, I can get you help, just wait here. Don't move," she told me, pulling out a cell phone ducking around a corner, hiding the conversation. Trust me, I was not going to be moving anytime soon.

She was gone for a few moments before stepping back around the alley. I was happy to see her. She was the only person that I had talked to and the people walking by scared me. As she walked by however, she walked too close for my comfort which was about seven steps away from me.

"No, get away from me," I yelled pushing myself against the wall as she quickly jumped back away from me. Why did I do that? Apart from the fact that, that just killed my throat she was also being nice to me and now I was yelling at her.

"Sorry, help is on their way." She told me as though she was the one in the wrong. I wished that I could apologize to her, but after my outburst I wasn't ready to talk openly for some time.

 It wasn't long before an ambulance pulled up. a new shiny black Civic pulled up behind it, following the ambulance. Both the girl and I looked at the Civic questioningly which assured me that I was right in thinking that this was odd.   

The driver of the car, which was a woman who wore a black suit with two long gray stripes on it got out of the car. She looked absolutely stunning with her flawless skin and long wavy black hair that fell just below her shoulder. Her skin was very pale and her eyes green, and almost seemed brighter than most people's eyes as they snapped over at me. I instantly felt the threatened just by the way she carried herself.

I started breathing again as her eyes shifted away from me to the E.M.T's whom I could not see. She didn't speak with him long, but I did notice her gesture towards me. This scared me, what did that mean, why was she talking about me? I strained myself trying to hear her words, but I couldn’t.

I watched as she backed up so that the E.M.T could open his door. He got out he quickly, walking a bee line towards me, clearing the crowd out of his way. The girl who was stand with me held her arm out stopping his path. They shared a look before she dropped her arm. He didn't move any closer as he looked at me. That was it. That was all he did. He made eye contact with me for a split second before he started walking back to the ambulance. I noticed him nod his head towards the girl who was still standing awaiting his approval.

She was beside me in a second, faster than I thought was humanly possible.  I must have imagined that, I thought before looking over to the girl who had called for help who looked positively freaked, "Come girl I don't have all day," she told me walking back to her car expectantly. I never even thought about it as I followed her to the car feeling much more comfortable around her than anyone else I had met.   

I noticed as the girl maintained her distance from me as I walked by her taking three quick steps back to my approach. I guess I must have scared her when I yelled at her. I again wished that I could apologize to her or even thank her for helping me so much today.

The length of this post was modified to comply with board rules and limits.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2013, 01:05:40 AM by Skip Slocum »

Offline 2par

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Re: Outlook Part one 2034 words.
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2013, 12:33:02 AM »
Zack, try reading this piece out loud. Notice the spelling, punctuation and grammar problems. Also notice the awkward sentences.
If you have trouble editing this piece, I'm sure someone here will do it for you, but expect that you do a little self editing before posting more.

So far, besides sounding very confusing to me, it also sounds interesting. I'd be interested in knowing what's going on and in reading more.

Offline Skip Slocum

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Re: Outlook Part one 1977 words.
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2013, 01:15:26 AM »
The following link is a copy of this board's rules, customs and limits.

 http://mywriterscircle.com/index.php?topic=24729.0

You need to read the above page.

Skip
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Offline 510bhan

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Re: Outlook Part one 1977 words.
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2013, 02:31:51 AM »
I started breathing again as her eyes shifted away from me to the E.M.T's whom I could not see. She didn't speak with him long, but I did notice her gesture towards me. This scared me, what did that mean, why was she talking about me? I strained myself trying to hear her words, but I couldn’t.

I watched as she backed up so that the E.M.T could open his door. He got out he quickly, walking a bee line towards me, clearing the crowd out of his way.



What is an EMT? ??? :-[ . . . and if the mc can't see him, how can they have noticed the woman shift her eyes away to them?

hillwalker3000

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Re: Outlook Part one 1977 words.
« Reply #4 on: July 30, 2013, 11:43:50 AM »
Openings are crucial. They send out a signal to the reader, and the reader decides whether or not to trust the writer, and whether or not to continue reading further.

I had to go over your opening twice in order to figure out what was happening.

I felt air beneath me, and knew I was not walking on my own.

Is he walking? No - he's being carried. So not only is he not walking on his own, he's not walking at all. I'm therefore wondering why you chose to begin with such a confusing image. If you make such a meal of telling us you are being carried then the signs are not good.

You also tend to over-describe.

I tried to open my eyes, but I couldn't. My head was spinning, my ears ringing, and my throat was on fire.

That's a lot for the reader to take in. Three clichés. Are they all necessary?

We are then told at great length how you felt once you were laid down - but since you don't tell us about the other person it's difficult to engage with either character. And there's nothing happening - certainly not enough to make us want to keep reading.

The next three paragraphs are muddled and can be safely removed. They add nothing to the story. You wake up - you pass out - you wake up again. Hardly intriguing:
My vision was full of black spots . . . The black dots were still there, but were translucent and in the background, they no longer covering my vision.

Even when something finally happens it's still rather uninteresting:

I got up slowly, leaning up against a nearby obviously it would have to be nearby tree. I noticed two things: One that there was a road that didn't look very far away ? What does that mean?. I couldn't see where it leads led to, but it must lead to some sort of civilization Why must it?. The second thing I noticed was a set of tracks leading to the shape I made in the grass, and moving away into the forest.How can a set of tracks move away?

You see a road and a set of tracks. But you take forever telling us about this and the options available. Where's the story? We don't even know why you were being carried.

Even when you meet the girl there's so much that makes no sense.
Why the spinning again?
What sweet smell?
Why is the narrator intimidated?
What do you mean by She unlike me was okay with what was going on.? There's nothing going on.
The odd ?? person would stop and look over staying to see the scene unfold. What scene?

This looks as if it was written off the cuff - you're writing everything down as soon as you make it up. Unfortunately, reading this is unrewarding. It's just too much effort. You presumably know what's going on but the rest of us are in the dark.

My advice, read as much as you can to get a feel for how other writers handle plot develoment and characters.

H3K

Offline Gyppo

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Re: Outlook Part one 1977 words.
« Reply #5 on: July 30, 2013, 07:47:27 PM »
Apart from what others have told you, you're over-writing.

Here's a a few examples of what I mean.

'Walking was starting to become a chore...'

Walking was becoming a chore.  (Less words doing the same job.)

It was another two hours of walking before I noticed a town far off in the distance.

(Well, seeing as no magic bus or car has appeared we know he is still walking, so you can leave out those two words without losing anything.)

(Also, far off and distance are the same thing, you don't need both.)

'Everything seemed to grow worse as I entered the town.'  (I don't think there's any seemed to about it.  It quite clearly did, so why fudge the issue with the extra words?)

I pnly highlighted a few examples, but there are many more if you'll look for them.

However, you are clearly enthusiastic about telling your tale, which is always a good start.  A rough first draft can always be edited, but if you'd let it sit for a while longer before posting it you may well have spotted the weaknesses yourself.  Which is better than editing by committee ;-)

Best wishes,

Gyppo
My website is currently having a holiday, but will return like the $6,000,000 man.  Bigger, stronger, etc.

In the meantime, why not take pity on a starving author and visit my book sales page at http://stores.lulu.com/gyppo1

Offline ShiningRaven

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Re: Outlook Part one 1977 words.
« Reply #6 on: July 31, 2013, 09:54:27 PM »
I liked your work here at conveying the desperation of your narrator, but as others have said, you have overdone it a bit. I count six times where you have told us that the narrator's throat is in pain, but you do not add new information with each of these mentions, but instead merely remind the reader of this fact. Try explaining the depth of the pain, or explain why it is important to the narrator (I imagine they simply cannot escape it?).

With a solid editor, the meaning of some of your musings would likely come across a bit more clearly. For instance: "I love you, and wish that you have a wonderful life without me," - this could be "I hope that you have a wonderful life without me" or "my wish for you is that you have a wonderful life without me" or any number of other variations, but the way you have written it is just too clunky. I find sometimes when I am writing dialogue that it helps if I read it out loud to see if it sounds natural.

I think you have a good start here. I hope that the suggestions here are helpful!

Offline gilbert_nathaniel

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Re: Outlook Part one 1977 words.
« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2013, 05:10:17 PM »
I really liked the beginning. I was intrigued by the person carrying her. Who were they? Why was the main character so sure that they loved them? So on and so forth, but from there... my interest began to wane.

I was still invested because of the very beginning, but it almost wasn’t enough to keep me going.

I think that the section where she was wandering the road and so on dragged on a little too much. Still, I hung on and it came around when the ambulance showed up and people started acting weird around her. It brought back the intrigue that got me reading in the first place.

“I felt air beneath me and knew that I was not walking on my own.” That is a good opening line if you ask me. It tells me that she is not on the ground, that she is moving. Well, where is she going? Who is taking her there? Just a good, solid first line.

One of the biggest things I noticed, and I used to be extremely guilty of it also, is using comma too much or in the wrong place. Watch out for those little devils, they can make or break the meaning of a sentence.

Seeing as this was manipulated to fit the word requirements; I can see why parts of it were a little more confusing than others. All in all, good job… I must know what is going to happen!