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  1. #1
    Pär Lindberg

    The Evil Vineyard

    "What's the use of running? They'll overtake us and drive us wherever they will."

    But she had not enough strength to pause. They were all running, and she with them. Another detachment of Cossacks appeared in front of them. Cries and wails went up from the crowd, which began to scatter in all directions. The Cossacks came on, as it were, in a broad chain.

    Many managed to break through, some with blood-stained faces and torn clothes. The others were driven forward from the rear and the sides and gradually became a compact mass. It was evident that the Cossacks were trying to get the crowd into the middle of the glade. Those who had broken through the ring at the very beginning had some hope of escape. There were about a hundred people in the ring. They were driven towards the town, and those who tried to escape were lashed with the nagaika.

    A few shots resounded in the distance. The provocateur fired the first shot--into the air. This aroused the anger of the Cossacks, who began to shoot at those who ran.

    Elisaveta and Alkina managed to escape the first ring together. But they could hear all around them the cries of the Cossacks. They paused and pressed close to an old oak, not knowing which way to turn. They were joined by Trirodov.

    "Follow me," he said to them; "I think I can find a less dangerous place."

  2. #2
    Gravity Fades

    Re: The Evil Vineyard

    This is pretty good. Quite evocative. Is this part of a short story, or a longer piece?

  3. #3
    Janice W-D

    Re: The Evil Vineyard

    Your dialogue sounds fairly natural but it and the narrative reads like a documentary, devoid of any emotion.

    Try recalling the most terrifying incident in your life, even if you have to go back to age four. What did you feel? Bewilderment, anger, fear? How did your body react? Did you sweat, cry, clench your fists? What thoughts ran through your mind? Go easy with this last part--you don't need to give the reader a word-by-word of your (or the character's) actual thoughts, just capture the gist of it for yourself and use it to fuel your writing.

    Now sit down and rewrite this scene, allowing the reader to experience it along with the character. Show us tension, fear, hopelessness, etc.

    You can do it!

  4. #4
    Finnley Wren

    Re: The Evil Vineyard

    I actually think the matter-of-fact telling makes it that much more horrific. Perhaps a dollop more about the herding, how none dared lose their footing for fear of being trampled - or maybe someone being trampled - might raise the tension a notch higher.

    But it's very good.

    Pogrom, perhaps?

  5. #5
    mar quesa

    Re: The Evil Vineyard


    This is very interesting. I think the writing is pretty good in general but I found the following contradicting: [i] But she had not enough strength to pause. <i/>

    If she doesn't have enough strength, then it'd make more sense that she'd pause and take a break.

    You may want to consider, she was "too afraid" to pause or but she didn't listen, or something down those lines.


    good luck!


  6. #6
    Todd Ritter

    Re: The Evil Vineyard

    I was also tripped up by the "she had not enough strength to pause." I also see some unnecessary editorializing -- "as it were," "It was evident that ..."

    It's more powerful to just say "The Cossacks came on in a broad chain" and "The Cossacks were trying to get the crowd into the middle of the glade." It's very easy for that kind of thing to slip in when you're really on a roll and into what you're writing. I do it all the time, then kick myself when I go back and edit.

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