HomeWritersLiterary AgentsEditorsPublishersResourcesDiscussion
Forum Login | Join the discussion
+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    Carrie Filetti

    Prologue & Chap. 1-Feedback anyone?

    This is the prologue and the first part of ch.1.
    Please be gentle, as I am short and cute.



    When the house was finally quiet and still, Wren walked over to the old wood sliding door and tugged at the iron ring. It still didn’t budge and she wondered why it was nailed shut. She ran her hands over the antique entrance; it was smooth and cold. She then placed her swollen cheek on it and it felt good upon her skin.

    Wren walked into the small entryway and tried to turn the old brass knob to the second entrance of the room. It was locked and also nailed shut. Wren knew this, but couldn’t help imagining opening the door. She leaned her whole body up against it and closed her eyes. It too was cold like the sliding door.

    Wren slowly pulled away and stared at the porch door instead. It was similar to the one in Peggy’s room and she ran her fingers over the delicately carved flowers in the wood. The door was even lovelier than Peggy’s, as it was untouched by paint. She gently moved back the deteriorating curtain and looked out the entrance window. The night was serene and it invited her out. She turned the knob.

    As Wren stepped onto the porch, she took a deep breath and closed her eyes. It was nice to hear crickets singing and frogs croaking instead of neighbors yelling. Wren then watched as fireflies danced around her. She appreciated that the light was from a couple of bugs, and not from nearby trailers or the constant beam of headlights coming and going. The farm felt asleep, resting, relaxing until the next day. The old trailer park back in Texas never slept.

    As she sat down on the broken cement step, she looked around. It too reminded her of the porch off of Peggy’s room, but on a larger scale and minus the gingerbread banister. It was open with four large columns that supported the weight above. Wren looked up and noticed the same mint green beaded board ceiling. Between each column was a hook which held hanging baskets with dead ferns. A bird had even made a nest in one and Wren wondered if they where little wrens.

    Wren sighed. She gently touched her broken nose and felt her swollen face. She was finally allowing herself to feel the pain. The events in the garden were now flooding back to her. She hadn’t permitted herself to think about it all day but had kept busy, or thought about the cat, refusing to come to terms with the knowledge that her younger brothers had joined together to hurt her. She wondered why the fight had turned so brutal. If the dead cat hadn’t been discovered, how much more would they have done? Wren touched her split lip; it was bleeding again. For the first time she tasted the blood. She dabbed it away with the bottom of her shirt then stared out into the darkness as tears finally formed up in her eyes. She only shed a few before she took a deep breath, refusing to lose control.

    Wren closed her eyes and leaned her head back on one of the columns. She was tired and her little body refused to budge. Her ears were fixed on the soothing singing of the night creatures. The beating of her heart, through her throbbing face, also calmed her. Wren was now being pulled into the deep of the night with every breath she took. Instead of feeling exposed and unprotected she felt the dark evening tuck her in and blanket her. She slowly drifted off to sleep.

    The day was now over. It was the first day in her new home, but more importantly, it appeared to be the first day of a new life. As the night ticked on, Wren curled herself into a tiny ball upon the old pealing porch planks and dreamed.

    Chapter One
    The Will

    Three Weeks Earlier

    “Wren! Mom wants you in right now. It’s your turn for dishes!” Peggy yelled. Wren closed her book and looked up at her older sister.

    “My turn for dishes?” Wren questioned. “I did them yesterday. It’s David’s turn.”

    Peggy smirked as she turned around and walked back into the trailer. Not everything was fair in the Hemsky family and Wren was getting tired of it. She stood up, dusted off her shorts with her book, and then walked toward the door to protest her case. Before the old storm door slammed behind her, Anna looked up while buckling Mattie, Wren’s baby brother, into the infant car seat.

    “Wren, I don’t want to hear it! I’m picking your father up from work,” Anna ran into the kitchen and grabbed a can of baby formula. “We’re going to the lawyer’s office to go over his mother’s will. When I get back I want this kitchen spotless!” She grabbed a few diapers and with the formula stuffed them into a diaper bag.

    “But Mom…” Wren looked over at David, who was playing a video game and ignoring the whole conversation. “It’s…”

    “I know it’s David’s turn, but you always do such a good job, and I want this place in shape when your father gets home,” Anna interrupted. She swung the diaper bag over her shoulder and picked up Mattie in the car seat. “We’ll be home soon, so make sure this place is clean!” With that said she was out the door and in the olive green 1985 Volkswagen bus. Wren stood in the middle of the living room, dumbfounded. She slowly shook her head listening to the old VW rattle down the road. Wren looked over at the sink full of dishes and sighed loudly as the roar of the digital race cars blared from the other room. She walked to the sink and began to pull, what looked like, two days worth of dishes out and stack them.

  2. #2

    Re: Prologue & Chap. 1-Feedback anyone?

    quiet and still
    It still didn’t budge

    Be careful about same-paragraph repetitions.

    Wren then watched

    You don't need "then" Wren watched.

    Wren was now being pulled

    You don't need "was now" Wren was being pulled.

    Go through the entire piece and yank out all the extra words you don't need.

  3. #3
    Joe Zeff

    Re: Prologue & Chap. 1-Feedback anyone?

    Four paragraphs in the prolog start with the word "Wren." This seems excessive.

    Also, when Peggy tells Wren to wash the dishes, you don't need to tag the reply; it's clear enough without it.

  4. #4
    Carrie Filetti

    Re: Prologue & Chap. 1-Feedback anyone?

    Thanks Leslee and Joe. I guess when you proofread so much, it all starts looking the same. I needed some "fresh eyes".


  5. #5

    Re: Prologue & Chap. 1-Feedback anyone?

    Two comments:

    1. You can write. Problem is, you also over-write. Wren walked, Wren tugged, Wren placed her cheek.... As the creator of these scenes, you see and feel every detail. As the reader, I don't need to know all this stuff. Give me credit for filling in the gaps. It makes the story move so much faster.

    2. I don't know your story, but you may be opening in the wrong place. As a general rule, prologues don't work. Pick a scene that allows you to engage the story without having to lapse right away into backstory. You have some intriguing elements here, but I'm not drawn into them.

    Repeat: you've got a voice, but you must pare it down and tell your story.

    Good luck.

  6. #6
    Carrie Filetti

    Re: Prologue & Chap. 1-Feedback anyone?

    Thanks jayce! I really appreciate your comments.
    It's hard for me not to put in the details, but you are right I need to give more credit to the reader. I'll keep a better eye on that.
    Your suggestions about the prologue has truly helped. It originaly came from chapter three. I may put it back. Thanks again for your help!
    P.S. Thanks for the compliment!! You made my night!!

  7. #7
    Tracy Carpenter

    Re: Prologue & Chap. 1-Feedback anyone?

    I think this would be a great opportunity to put little glimpses of the prologue throughout your writing. Like... seperating the prologue into mini chapters, filling gaps of the main chapters. I am not sure if this make sense or not, but I can see this future event spotting throughout the text up until it occurs. Does anyone know what I mean?

  8. #8
    Nan Hammond

    Re: Prologue & Chap. 1-Feedback anyone?

    When I was reading it is seemed very...

    Wren did this then Wren did that, then Wren felt like so andWren Wren Wren...

    Hope it helps. Sorry I have to go or I'd write more.


  9. #9
    Carrie Filetti

    Re: Prologue & Chap. 1-Feedback anyone?

    Tracy and Nan,
    Sorry for the delay...it's been crazy here!
    Thanks for your ideas!
    Nan, you are so right! Way to much Wren...

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts