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  1. #1
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    First Paragraphs - comments?

    Lieco. The trademarked name stood out in red letters on blimps that overshadowed the city of Langford. They towered over the slated roofs and brick chimneys. Over raised railways and steam powered trains. They were meant for the men dressed in blazers, women in dresses, or else those who wore what they could. Whoever you were, the message was clear. We are always here, we are always watching.
    Pink laughed.
    A group of men - all suits and briefcases - passed her by. One of them glanced over, a worried expression on his face. Madness wasn’t good. Lieco would - on the behalf of the government – detain those who threatened normality. Having a private army had its advantages. As he hurried on down the cobbled street, it was almost as if the man was worried that her madness was catching.
    ‘I need to control myself,’ she muttered, trying to ignore the irony of saying that aloud. Still, she was a solider in training, she should be able to discipline herself. It was just that she was the sort of person who, if she thought of something, would say it. Same went for laughing. If she felt like laughing, she would.
    Trying to ignore the blimps she carried on walking through the crowded streets, becoming, externally at least, just another face in the crowd. Inside however, her thoughts were rebellious.
    Officially, Lieco were a superpower in trade. No, that’s not right, she thought to herself. Lieco were the superpower in trade. Langford, being the biggest city in the Centralia, was their centre stage. They were the puppet masters. The consumers that consumed.
    Some said they had more money than the government. Most said more power. Food, water, materials - they traded in all these things, but there was one thing that gave them more wealth and control than any other.
    Magic.
    Or rather, magic chips.
    Pink ran her fingers subconsciously along her wrist, where she knew hers was located.
    Magic wasn’t cheap, and Lieco were responsible for its cost and usage, a system where the rich had more and the poor less. The only exception was for those that were – like her - still in training, meaning their fees would be paid for by an institution.
    Crazy, thought Pink. Every man, woman and child on the Seven Isles had magic at the core of their bodies. They’d be taxes for breathing next.



  2. #2
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    Please post it with paragraph breaks.

  3. #3
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    Hello! It doesn't seem too bad, but I did notice some grammar errors, mostly with comma usage in the third paragraph.

    "Trying to ignore the blimps(comma) she carried on walking through the crowded streets,(new sentence) becoming, externally at least, just another face in the crowd. Inside(comma) however, her thoughts were rebellious."

    Also, Leico seems to me to be singular, in which case it should be was, not 'were,' in the fourth paragraph.

    And, the last sentence throws me off. "They'd be taxes..." It should be 'There'd be' or 'There would be.'

    Just my opinion.

  4. #4
    Senior Member C Bets's Avatar
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    Correction: No new sentence after "...crowded streets..."
    Cindy

    And be at peace... the universe is unfolding as it should

  5. #5
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    This reads like a first draft in which you're exploring the world you want to create, tossing thoughts onto the page as they occur, half-formed and unpolished. (There's some blimps, and buildings, and—oh, yeah—people wearing clothes.) You switch POV with dizzying frequency from 3rd omnipotent to 3rd subjective, once within the same sentence. While you should be showing us this new world through your characters' actions, you rely on the authorial voice to carry the freight. It's overwritten. (It was just that she was the sort of person who, if she thought of something, would say it. Same went for laughing. If she felt like laughing, she would. You would submit this to an agent? Really?) The prose style is bland and uncompelling.

    My advice is to junk this and begin reading published works (not self-published) in your genre, studying how successful authors open their stories, set up their worlds, introduce their characters. Above all, study how quickly they introduce tension into the narrative. Get a copy of The First Five Pages by Noah Lukeman. Get a couple of writing texts; I suggest On Writing by Sol Stein.

    You seem to have a decent imagination, and while the writing is weak, the grammar is not seriously flawed. But writing is a craft; it takes time to learn.

    My opinion. Sorry.

    (And C Bets is correct.)
    Last edited by jayce; 03-14-2012 at 12:36 PM.

  6. #6
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    @C Bets You're right. My mistake.

  7. #7
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    Hi Adam,

    Jayce gave you a good crit. If the writing was tighter, I'd probably read this book. But the description is all from the author, not the character. You've got to figure out how to put us in her head. You'll get there, it just takes so much freaking time. But just keep reminding yourself, every month that passes while you're still editing - this is where most people give up. Pass them.

    I think that opening with some action is always a good thing - and not a character laughing out of the blue. Most people can't connect with madness, so it puts up an immediate barrier between us and your MC.

    I would try and re-write this without explaining anything at all. Don't explain magic chips, don't explain Lieco - just put us in some action and let these plot elements come in, unexplained, when their time is right. The reader will see this as a sign that you respect their intelligence enough to let them connect the dots. It's that sort of respect, if written well, which keeps people reading. We feel smarter when it's not spelled out for us like we're kids.

    You have a great world - I'd keep going with this. Just edit like mad, then edit again, then edit again. I got a lot out of the book "Self-Editing for Fiction Writers" by King and.. someone. I forget. Loved it, anyway. I would also recommend sticking around and trying to critique the work of others. It can help immensely.

  8. #8
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    Thank you all for taking the time to read and comment on my post. Some of the responses have reinforced areas that I thought were problems when I posted, and others have given me a lot to think about, so it's all been really helpful. Thanks again, I can tell this website is going to be useful and I look forward to reading your own posts

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