Anonymous
Anonymous asked in Arts & HumanitiesBooks & Authors · 9 years ago

Can you tell me what you think of this?

it's the beginning of my book, it's also a very rough draft. lol

Static. Loud, superfluous static. Emanating from the gaping, prattle filled, mouths of my fellow classmates, slowly filling the cool, stone blue walls of Ballard High School. Inhale deeply, and make yourselves comfortable ladies and gentlemen, it is your first day of high school.

Today, I wore green, not the type that bestirs your eyes, but the kind of green that if you didn't know any better, you would mistake for gray, and if you were smart you'd assume the absence of color all along . My Old Navy jeans sat comfortably allaying the pale flesh on my legs. Accented with my plain black flip flops, my outfit was complete. I wish I could have done something better with my hair, it looks like it always does; shoulder length, black, parted to the side, and scrunched with the gel my mom buys with a discount from the beauty supply. The epitome of the lovely Miss Sara Baker.

The school looks typical, brimming with the buoyant excitement that traditionally follows the first day of a new school year. Kids swiftly promenading through the halls, catching up with old friends, comparing schedules, and gossiping for the sake of gossip. Static.

I really miss the summer months, not just the balmy weather, I miss the balance. If on that day, I want to watch the birds kiss the sky, there's not a soul there to point out the dirt on their wings . It's just me. Maybe that's it.

My first period's algebra I. I hate algebra. If it wasn't the first day I'd-

“ Sara!?.....Sara!!” Jenn Russ came trotting through the commercial grade wooden door of room 208, her short, wavy, champagne colored hair bobbing just below her crimson ears. She carried more books than the Library of Congress, her schedule neatly folded and clamped between her rouge lips. She wore a pair of classic boot cut blue jeans with a plain gray t-shirt. Sweet and to the point. Jenn is a fair candidate for my sympathy, people have always made fun of her since elementary school, I'll admit it so did I. In 5th grade I never did my spelling homework, not once. I managed to receive credit for it by telling my teacher I did it, but forgot it in my cubby. He'd give me credit, I'd start rummaging through my cubby, and by the time he checked everybody's, he had forgotten about mine. He mustn't of had a good memory because I did this every week . This worked until Jenn told him what I'd been doing. She was always the 'tattle-tale'. I beat her up the the locker room . I mean I apologized a year later, but still. I get why she's walking towards me. Nobody really wants to sit alone.

“Jenn, whats up? How the hell was your summer”? I said, trying to find the right tools to compose a smile.

“good” she replied cordially “I hope this teacher isn't going to assign seats” she said taking the seat in front of mine.

“Right? I hope this guys not an asshole”

“what's his name again?” she said slightly leaning her short, plump, frame towards me.

“ Mr. Gallecko, I think” Looking down at my rumpled schedule I wonder If anyone has ever had the exact same schedule as mine, same teachers, same classes, during the same period, reading the same books, watching the same paint chip off the walls . Or is it all really just mine?

The bell rang leaving the lost and delirious dashing onward towards their first period class; “I hope they don't mark me as late” “Teachers can't give you detention on the first day right”? Their thoughts, clearly projecting from the marrow of their flustered brows.

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  • 9 years ago
    Best Answer

    Ok, I'm going to be honest here so please don't take any of this the wrong way :)

    1) You need to work on punctuation. You need semi-colons, dashes, or periods where you put commas, or you need to just remove commas b/c they're a joint thought (prattle filled, mouths = prattle filled mouths). (she said slightly= she said, slightly...) etc.

    2) Your word choice sounds very amateurish. I can tell you're looking at your thesaurus and that's not a good thing. And if you aren't looking at your thesaurus then you need to pay more attention to word choice. "bestirs" is not the right word for this story's tone or what you're trying to say about the color green. "allaying" is wrong usage. birds "kiss" the sky, (kiss is not the image you want to conjure I don't think). etc.

    3) Your dialogue needs work "Jenn, what's up? how the HELL was your summer" Sounds amateurish and a bit cheesy. I know no one who swears randomly like this.

    4) You seem to make some insightful thoughts (your protagonist), but they are irrelevant and don't even make sense. Such as (...I miss the balance. If on that day, I want to watch the birds kiss the sky, there's not a soul there to point out the dirt on their wings . It's just me. Maybe that's it.) When you use words like kiss and then speak of the dirt on their wings..it just makes no sense, not to mention it has nothing to do with the balmy weather you mentioned the sentence before. If you're trying to say he like seclusion then say that..you sound like you're trying to be "writerly" and its very forced and doesn't make sense. The imagery isn't good.

    5) you're cutting off internal dialogue with real dialogue..never do that..(My first period's algebra I. I hate algebra. If it wasn't the first day I'd- “ Sara!?.....).

    especially when the other character is apparently calling to the narrator but the narrator doesn't acknowledge that her name is Sara. I didn't know that the narrator is Sara b/c the narrator didn't say anything about acknowledging Jenn was speaking to her.

    I had to read that twice to pick up that Sara is the narrator because you jumped right into Jenn's description..which is border-line too much. You don't want to dump description of appearance on the reader. Show the reader through the characters action instead of listing the physical characteristics.

    6) This whole paragraph needs revising:

    The bell rang leaving the lost and delirious dashing onward towards their first period class; “I hope they don't mark me as late” “Teachers can't give you detention on the first day right”? Their thoughts, clearly projecting from the marrow of their flustered brows.

    If you can misread a sentence then you need to reword it or add punctuation. You COULD read the first sentence as the bell literally leaving behind the lost and delirious. And You have quotation marks around two separate sentences on the same line. If it's the same speaker then leave them in the same quotation if you're not breaking them up with a "he/she said". If it's a different character speaking then you need to divide the lines.

    You have a rather formal, slow-paced style/voice which I don't think suits this type of story. But it may work. What you need to do though is watch your punctuation, sentence structure, word choices, and details.

    Not bad for the very first draft. Keep at it and again, I'm not nit picking, just trying to help you fix some errors. Good luck with your writing :)

  • ?
    Lv 7
    9 years ago

    The writing is not bad at all. The story flows well and there is action too. The descriptions are fine as is the dialogue but do edit it. "Allaying the pale flesh on my legs doesn't really work so try another word for 'allaying.' The sentence beginning "He musn't of had a good memory" is grammatically incorrect and doesn't sound right so try "He must have had a bad memory" instead. Also "I beat her up the locker room" should that have the word 'in' after the word up? You also missed some capital letters too.

    Having said that I like the writing, the style you have adopted and the flow of the story so keep it going. Remember though don't write as you speak unless of course it is dialogue because we don't always speak correctly but we should always write correctly. Good luck with your story.

    Source(s): Experience.
  • 9 years ago

    It's full of purple prose. The language you're using is just waaaaaay too flowery. Basically, you're trying too hard and it's off-putting to readers. And you tend to jump around a bit too much, making the narrative a bit inconsistent.

    Also, the whole pessimistic, too good for everybody else, too cool for school teenager thing is just annoying and unrealistic.

    I don't mean to discourage you if you're young, and it appears to me that you probably are. But when you're writing you need to use language that is a bit more simple and relaxed. Go back and look at the way published writers write. For the most part, it's a lot of simple language with occasional flowery, beautiful moments.

    You're not a bad writer. In fact, it seems to me you do have a bit of talent. But you need to work on telling the story, rather than trying to show off.

  • 9 years ago

    I'm sorry I'm not good at critique, but I can tell you that I adore this story so far. I want to read more already. I adore your descriptions of Sara and Jenn, and the school itself. The static feel is powerful.

    You have talent.

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  • Javik
    Lv 6
    9 years ago

    Your writing is extremely arrogant. You overuse fancy vocabulary when other words would do much better. You also have inconsistant quality--you go from purple prose to grammar-less exchanges.

  • 9 years ago

    Very nice. There is an intensity to it that is engaging.

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