12-16-2010 11:29 AM
As the wind blew through the branches of a nearby weeping-willow, I took a deep breath, enjoying the fell, the scent, the unnatural calm of an early-Spring day. In the distance, a family of ducks swam lazily in Beaver Pond. The pond was so named because of the family of beavers that came calling every April, until the first breaths of winter drove them away in late Autumn.
From the farmhouse, that sat atop a nearby hill, I heard my mother. "Tomas! Tomas Deaver! Stop fooling around! There's a cow to be milked, and she ain't gonna do it 'erself!" Sighing, I sprang from my former perch that sat atop the giant granite rock. My Grandma used to tell me that a little Indian boy had died here, and that, on foggy nights, you could still hear his screams of pain. Grandma never told me how the boy died, but the way I had it figured, he had probably been ripped to shreds by a pack of wild-dogs. It was for this that I had dubbed the granite rock 'Coyote Boulder.'
I leaped over both fence and animal in my quest to reach the house, because, when Momma called, you came, and you did so without hesitatin'. Doing so could only lead to trouble, and the last thing that I wanted was trouble. When I reached the top of the hill, just as I was opening the door, I saw storm clouds gatherin' in the distance. But storms were common in Texas, and I paid no attention to it. Even though I had never seen so many black clouds in one place before, not once in my entire life.
(Yes, this story will be continued.)
(Please state your opinion so that I can respond accordingly.)
12-16-2010 01:32 PM
I think that your flow of information and character introduction is better in this one. It doesn't feel rushed.
I do think that your first sentence in your first paragraph is a bit long and could be split at least in two. Its kind of overwhelming for the reader (me anyway) when you start reading and the sentence doesn't end !
Some grammar things you may want to look up (because I'm not sure if it is wrong or just looks wrong):
I don't think that "Grandma" needs to be capital unless your character is actually saying "Grandma" in the dialogue.
Also, with the hesitatin' and gatherin', I think that is only appropriate when it is being said in the dialogue or when the character is having a thought, but not in the narrative.
Again, I would check, because I'm not sure.
I think it's a good start. Can't wait to read more!
12-16-2010 08:54 PM
Umm.....I hate to tell you but that is how country people usually talk in literature. And as for the other the thing about it only being needed if the character is having a thought or in the dialogue. Well....in case you haven't noticed, the character IS the narrator. Grandma is what he calls his grandmother so that IS gramatically correct. I don't mean to seem rude or anything, but that's just my opinion, and, since I grew up in the "boondocks" I do know a little more about country talk than people who live in the city. (if you live in the country ignore this last sentence.)
12-18-2010 05:35 PM
I am so sorry about my previous posts, because, rereading it, I do see the problems that you have pointed out. I am sorry that I spazzed-out before, I was having a rough day. Thanks for your input, and I hope that, if you have any more insights, that you won't hesitate to tell me.
12-20-2010 01:30 PM
This is a great passage. I like the subtle tension of the storm that's brewing. The narrator is used to storms but this one seems particularly significant.
Interesting conversation here about the issue of voice. You make a good point that such choices stay true to your character. And voice is one of the particularly pleasing aspects of this opening. Still, it's important to remain consistent. For example, why drop the "ing" on "gatherin'" but not "enjoying" or "calling" in the first paragraph? You don't want to overwhelm a narrative with too much phonetic spelling (when you spell a word the way it's spoken), so you might just choose a few defining pronunciations of a character's speech and use those consistently. Also, word choice and sentence structure can help create voice. If you're interested, here's an article I wrote with a few examples of how to do that.
Great work so far. I hope to see more of this.
12-23-2010 07:50 PM
You paint a really good picture of what you want the reader to think. It's nicely descripted! Keep writing!
01-22-2011 09:48 PM
Coyote Boulder has its eerie story about the wails of the Indian boy whose screams can still be heard to this day. Your story, eBoweno, has that same narrative that is associated with "Scout" in "To Kill a Mockingbird." Wonderful story you are writing.