The mascara look
Wednesday, June 27, 2007, 1:02 PM
I’ve been doing more critiquing than writing lately because I thought it would help get me into the writer’s mode again, but I can’t seem to get the editor to back the eff off once I start writing my stuff. I’m an editorial bitch. Example:While I like the rice paddy near a village no one can pronounce (good stuff), you just reminded that I am reading with this kind of expository paragraph. I'd rather learn this information at the same time the main character does — WITH her.
~*~*~No man is going to waste time knocking on a door and waiting for it to be answered if he barges in and proceeds to rape a woman. Go for broke (and get rid of PROCEEDS TO RAPE--this is passive writing no-no #101). If you aren't horrified, sickened or ashamed while writing this or reading it later, you have to go deeper. Watch a movie with a rape scene if you need to.
~*~*~What can a mirror suggest? Mirrors only reflect what's in front of them. So if he’s only ninety pounds soaking wet, but sees that he's one-seventy in the mirror, write that.
~*~*~How did he decide so quickly to target XY? Surely it can't be because XY is the main character. There must be a reason.
You're focusing too much on the time issue—there are so many references to what time it is in the first few paragraphs that I can't concentrate on the story. I'd suggest letting his body language show his agitation. If you show the clock readout at 10:29 and then reveal that it's still 10:29 several paragraphs from now, it will have more impact.
I like this paragraph. It's painful and poignant and reminds me how dumb I was at this age, hoping for the impossible.
I'd like to see how it's more than the act of fucking that moves her to action. If it's just feeling desirable by a man again, I want to see her realize that. But I'm greedy and I want more than that. I want her to realize she's over him for other reasons because I like this painful, rather dark story.
Describe why she's distracted. Is it the smell of his cologne? The shape of his hands? The sensual curve of his mouth? The tone of his voice? How thick his thighs are? If you're going to put me here, show me the goods.
There are too many ... ellipses. Use them judiciously, or your character's pauses lose impact. Plus, it makes me think that neither one of them feels strongly enough about what they're feeling or communicating.
This gorgeous 36-year-old guy who has the world in the palm of his hand thinks a girl he barely knows is too good for him? I didn't think 36-year-old entrepreneurs had TIME to have inferiority complexes. And I have no idea how he comes up with the idea to set X and Y up. It makes me think that this is a plot device to keep them apart, or it makes me think that X and Y aren't even going to get together, which begs the question why you spent a chapter and a half getting them together in the first place.
Don't worry about where to place the story for now. Worry about getting your two main character's major complications and motivations off page 15 and onto the first few pages.
I read over the story critiques I've sent later and often think I'm harsh, but then I (waste time) read other critiques on the same story and feel redeemed because most of the other critiquers come across piss-poorly, sans balls and backbone. It makes me feel like I'm in the minority. Which I probably am, but sheesh. The first six paragraphs of a chapter two romance focused on two girls putting on blush and doing the mascara look. Three of the critiquers LOLed at that, totally "getting it". And there I am, wondering how I managed the patience to crit the piece, let alone where the complications of the story are.
I'm boycotting all romance.
Meanwhile, I’ve written almost 500 words of crap and I have to get back to it because I’m aiming for at least another 500 by the end of the week.
3 Did the Unhingey Jiggy
Engage in Unhingenosity
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