How can I make this part in my story better?

How could I reword it:

I ran up the stairs into my room. I made a face at myself in the mirror then started singing nut stopped because someone was there, in the dark, outside the house, I could feel it. I swallowed and heard my mouth make a dry sticking sound. I help myself absolutely still, then stepped over to the window and looked down to the ground. I couldn’t make out any unusual shadows or bumps in the yard below. The breeze was nice and I could hear the birds chirping. The only thing I could make out in the yard was a swarm of bees. There wasn’t anything to be afraid of. Besides my parents were home.

``Whew,`` I said, to make sure I could still say something. But the word just hung there like a hot air balloon caught in a tree. I looked around my room then shrugged.

``There’s nothing to worry about Melina, just forget it.`` In my boredom stage I decided to pick up around my room. Towels and dirty clothes were in giant heaps on the floor, but that would take maybe 30 seconds to sort out. I also found some crumpled up shopping bags, scattered gum wrappers, and empty tubes of hair gel. Downstairs my mom was sitting on the sofa watching the news. I sat down next to her and watched.

``There was a car accident on 67th Remington Street, two were killed and one is in critical condition.`` said the weatherman.

``Oh my goodness. That’s terrible.`` complained my mother. She was drinking hot chocolate when its not even cold outside. Well there’s another thing I don’t understand about her. When the program was over, I went back upstairs to pick out my clothes for the next day. I chose my baby blue jogging pants and a white polo that had a blue star in the middle. I heard my dad get in the house.

``Hi daddy, how was your day?`` I called from upstairs.

``It was…fine, how was yours sweetie?`` he called back.

``Alright. Typical day at school and a normal checkup at the clinic that’s all.``

``That’s nice. Well I’m exhausted, all day long we moved boxes, labeled packages, and answered calls.`` he said wryly.

``Aw. Sorry about that dad. Good night. Good night mom.``

``Night Lena.`` called my mom.

``Night.`` called my dad. In my room I pulled a huge t-shirt over my head, brushed my teeth, went back into my room, and snuggled under the covers. Before I could fall into a deep sleep, something was bothering me, not that there could have been someone in the yard, but I was thinking about somebody almost half my day, and his name is…Nathaniel Hernandez.

When I went down for breakfast in the morning, my dad had a cup of coffee to his lips like an emergency drink and my mom was flipping pancakes with one hand while pressing her bathrobe to her waist with the another hand.

``Mom…Dad? I think someone was in the yard last night. But I don’t know maybe I was imagining things.`` I said.

``What?`` Mom moved away from the stove. Her face had a bewildered expression on it.

``I honestly think someone was out there. Maybe spying on us.`` my eyes narrowed to the window near the front door.

``Did you see the person?`` my dad asked.

``No. I just heard strange noises. I opened my window to check but the only thing I noticed was a car passing our street.``

``This has always been a safe neighborhood,`` my mother said.

``Mom…no neighborhood is necessarily safe, a lot of bad things happen behind closed doors and you don’t even realize it…not a lot of people do.``

``True, you think we should call the police Mario?`` she asked, hesitated near the phone.

``Its a little late don’t you think? Melina should have came to us as soon as she heard something strange.`` he said.

I felt my body stiffen.

``That’s right. Melina when things like this happen, you need to tell us right away. If you don’t get us right then and there and just tell us a day after, we can’t really do anything about it.``

I nodded at glanced over at the time on the stove.

``I got to go. See you guys later.``

``Wait. Melina you want a ride to school?`` my dad asked while finishing the last bit of his buttermilk flapjacks and his coffee.

``Um…sure why not.`` I tried to sound enthusiastic. There has never been a time where my dad wanted to take me to school.

He seemed kind of in a hurry for something because once in the car he revved the engine, turned on the ignition, and cranked the air conditioner up full blast. As the brakes wheezed off of the driveway, I looked at the last house in the subdivision which was still under construction.

2 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    It's suffering from too much detail.

    Make every word count. If some detail doesn't specifically relate to the story, it's unnecessary.

    Deciding to clean the room might be something that actually happened, but why? Does it reveal something about the character? Is she obsessive about that? If so, you need to make it stronger. Otherwise, it sounds like the character got bored (which means the reader gets bored).

    By adding too many details, it becomes a slice of life. People have their own mundane lives already.

    Make your characters more extreme. Mom has to be neurotic to the extreme. She should have some definite issues, so when the bad news comes on she is freaking out, or openly prejudiced, or wants to move again. Dad is clearly overworked. He may be nice, but the work load is making him unusually grumpy. He DOESN'T have time to take Melina to school. He used to, but not now.

    That will build tension, which is a good thing. Right now, it's all pretty nice and normal. No tension, no story. Readers will lose interest.

  • 1 decade ago

    Ok. Just in the first paragraph there are many confusing things. It says: I made a face at myself in the mirror then started singing nut stopped because someone was there, in the dark, outside the house, I could feel it.

    Did you mean non stop?

    I help myself absolutely still, then stepped over to the window and looked down to the ground.

    Did you mean held myself?

    Also you state that it is dark outside, but then you say the birds are chirpping and you can see bees. In the dark? You may want to fix that.

    Sorry, but I couldn't get past the first paragraph. Give it a bit more editing and it might be pretty good! Keep going.

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