Friday, March 2, 2012

first impressions - one year anniversary

This month, to celebrate a whole year of first impressions, Dianne and I are putting up our own first page for YOU to critique. Today, I give you my first page of LONG WAY HOME, a YA contemporary/magic realism.




Ch. 1 - April 16th 1:00AM MONDAY


     I remember falling.
     I remember reaching out for something to grab hold of, anything, anything at all. But there was nothing but blue sky and air.
     What I don’t remember is who pushed me. Or why.
     I look up and all I can see is a big sky full of stars and the moon not quite full and the cliff above me, a massive perpendicular shadow rising. It’s dark now.
     And I’m in the desert below.
     My eyes adjust to the light – or rather lack of – and as I sit up I can see the sage and cacti, dark shapes I recognize by their outline and …and yes, the pictures Max showed me.
     My head throbs, sharp, relentless, stabbing. I reach up to rub where it hurts and feel the wetness there. I know when I bring my fingers away that they are bloody. My body aches hard, like someone threw me against that canyon wall until…
     I look up to the place I fell from, a black outline against the starry sky.
     I should be dead.

28 comments:

  1. Interesting! I really like the voice. I think you've got there here. :D

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  2. Oohh I like this very much! thank you for sharing - I get the sense of your poor mc falling and his/her confusion - so the voice is very strong!! Yay! Well done you! Take care
    x

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  3. Great start!!!! After reading all the first impressions you two have been critting, it's cool to see the first impressions of your novel.

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  4. Ooh, a mystery already. Very nice.

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  5. I love it. It has a great feel to it.. almost like I'm really falling.

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  6. Hey, Marcy! How fun to share your work. I've heard you talking about this one, but I've never gotten to read it.

    I have to say the idea intriques me, although I know more than is actually on the page here.

    The line with the pictures threw me. At first, I thought she saw the sage and cacti, as well as some pictures. This confused me because if she was laying in her back looking up at a cliff, where could she possibly see pictures. It wasn't until the second read through that I realized he had shown her pictures of this place. Maybe a rewording to clarify that.

    I also wonder if starting with "I should be dead" then going on to talk about the blood, then the falling is a more interesting beginning.

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    1. good point about the pictures, Krystey thanks :)

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  7. I thought the first line was a real grabber. Might be a shift in tense, but I'm not very good at that either. Definitely get a full sense of place in this.

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  8. I left a more detailed comment at Dianne's, because I happened to end up there first, but I'll just say - I like this!

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  9. I just left my comment over at Dianne's as well. I liked the this line: "I remember reaching out for something to grab hold of, anything, anything at all. But there was nothing but blue sky and air."

    I want to know who pushed her too!

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  10. Great writing, Marcy. I have found writing in first person difficult - you did it brilliantly!

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    1. Thank you! This is my first time...

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  11. great first page, piques curiosity!
    good first line
    better with "what i dont remember is who pushed me or why"
    even beeter first line, "I should be dead."

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  12. Oh, I agree with Tara. I like what you have but "I should be dead." would really yank the reader in. I'd rather read: "My eyes adjusted to the dim light" instead of "rather the lack of." That phrase slows the reader down. Nonetheless, you've pulled us in with the questions...who pushed, why, where is the MC...and why isn't the MC dead? Thanks for sharing!

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    1. thanks - it seems a lot of folks like that for the first line.

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  13. Piggy backing on Tara and Liza. The memory of falling can be combined in the second line and the "I should be dead" at the front is strong. I'm not sure I understand where Max and the pictures come in. I'm immediately wondering if Max showed her some very dangerous pictures and then he or someone else who didn't want her to see those pictures pushed her over the edge.

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    1. I also wanted to add, I like the voice. I feel drawn to this character and her plight.

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  14. I didn't really get confused about the picture thing. I think for the most part I just kinda go with the flow for the first chapter and just let the author give what info she will. However, what did throw me for a minute was the weird passage of time. I had to read it a couple of times to get what had happened. It makes sense with the confusion of the mc...going from day to night suddenly after a slight bump on the noggin. I just missed it somehow.
    Overall, really good. I want to read on. I want to know more. Who pushed her. DID someone push her, or is that a red herring? (love that term!) is she dead?? And the desert is never a good place to be at night...

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    1. Plus I like your first line better then starting with "I should be dead." Yours is good. The second one is a tad bit melodramatic for me. If I picked up a book with that as the first line I know I'd roll my eyes and groan a bit. :)

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    2. thanks, Alicia :) And there is a reason for the first line being what it is although I may have to think about how good that reason is.

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  15. Oops...I hit Dianne's blog first and left a comment there. Bottom line....thumbs up! :)

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  16. Ooo! Very nice. I want to keep reading. Happy blogaversary!

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  17. I love the voice! As Pk said, I felt like I was falling along with the character.

    Congratulations on the one year anniversary! :)

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  18. Nice. I definitely want to know why the character isn't dead!

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  19. Wow, I cannot believe it's been a whole year already since you started those critiques! Congrats!

    I love the first line and I really love the whole piece. I wasn't sure about the picture part but I know this would definitely make me want to know more.

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  20. I started with Dianne's first, too, but will say here... I love it. And I hadn't thought of it, but I agree with the suggestions about starting out with "I should be dead." That'd be a real grabber.

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