How many fiction writers do we have here?

dr
druid
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Fri Jul 17, 2009 8:28 pm Post

Jaysen wrote: Happens pretty frequently these days as the now-15-year-old daughditor reminds me. Several times each day she reminds me.


In the spirit of constructive comment, I think that the above statement is what your opening lines are concealing, rather than revealing. The present opening is a lot of throat-clearing about souls and fathers, and it's not something most readers will like or understand. (Witness our science and religion discourse, in another thread.)

Whatever souls do, they don't "pick" the bodies they inhabit. If that were true, we'd be universally slim, coordinated, zit-free, and with 20-20 vision. You didn't "pick" the form your daughter inhabits, and at 15, she is losing her childhood as you descend into mid-life. It's a rough passage, for all concerned. If your opening expressed this situation, from both perspectives, you'd be winning all kinds of readers. And instead of telling this stuff, show it.

Example: As Katy reached the nth minute of a phone dialogue, her fourth this morning, I shot her a look that she returned with a nasty sneer. My little girl, approaching fifteen. In me she doubtless saw the ruins of her Daddy, now grown bald and disapproving.

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Jaysen
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Fri Jul 17, 2009 9:32 pm Post

*sniff*

Yeah. It needs a bit when you say it that way.

Good feedback.
Jaysen

I have a wife and 2 kids that I can only attribute to a wiggle, a giggle, and the realization that she was out of my league so I might as well be happy with her as a friend. 26 years marriage later, I can't imagine life without her. -Me 10/7/09

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vic-k
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Mon Jul 20, 2009 10:59 am Post

Jaysen wrote:But … I could be wrong. Happens pretty frequently these days as the now-15-year-old daughditor reminds me. Several times each day she reminds me. *sigh*

Mark Twain wrote something along the lines of, "At the age of 14, I was dismayed and embarrassed at how ignorant and unaware my old man was. However, by the time I was 21, I was astonished by how much he had learnt, in just 7 years.", so don`t worry about it Jaysen, it`s happened to all of us dads :wink:
Vic
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Skallegrim
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Wed Sep 09, 2009 7:20 am Post

From a historical novel which I began (mistakenly?) to do more background research for and then never got round to finish. I've continued the research though, now as a PhD...

Everywhere was the din of war — the shrill ring of sword on sword, the echo of sword on shield, the noise of a whole forest of spears rattling and the shouts and screams of thousands of men in the throes of battle and death. Across the settlement women and children clutched each other in blind terror. Some covered their ears while others implored the gods to save them.
Write Your Novel in 30 Days—A 10-Step Guide:
9) Don't stop to research

why, oh why, didn't I listen to Garda?

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vic-k
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Sat Sep 26, 2009 8:08 pm Post

Ahha!
I would appear to have unearthed the answer to my query made on Sceriv`s lower deck (literal and metaphorical), viewtopic.php?f=13&t=6737&start=9 Artificial Stupidity
:
Skallegrim?
Scandie/Icelandic scholar/accademic?
Game player?
Haggard fan (as in author, not, exhausted and worn out looking)?
'I am,' said he, 'as much akin to Yngvar as is Thorolf.'
'You shall not go,' said Skallagrim, 'for you know not how to behave yourself in company where there is much drinking, you who are not good to deal with though you be sober.'

'Eric Brighteyes' H. Rider Haggard

Haaa! Sounds like half of Scriv`s crew and most of the female members

Vic
As a professional, you, are your one and only asset. Without integrity you are worthless, but with it, you are priceless.

te
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Mon Sep 28, 2009 11:59 am Post

Mollys Mum wrote:There's an interesting post on another writing site I visit where people post the first lines (or first several lines) of their latest work for reader response. I thought it was a good idea, as first lines are 1) relatively short and easy to read and 2) extremely important in terms of garnering that elusive prize, reader interest. I am still wrestling with mine, but would be willing to put it up here if others were also interested in posting theirs. You go first. No you go first.



Cold coffee. I was reading through the forum, and as I kept on doing just that I hadn't noticed my pint-sized coffee mug had turned cold as a hailstorm (in a cup)

In other words, I wish to say a big HELLO! to all you writers, literature (and coffee) drinkers out there! Though I got my hands on Scrivener some months ago, I have a project that has been sizzling about in the attic for some years now. Will post something when time comes :)

Best regards,
T. Drage
...said mr. Coffee Bean, heading downstairs for another cup of grog.

ma
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Sun Oct 04, 2009 2:50 am Post

Interesting thread, Molly! I recognized quite a few of the published first lines, especially the Left Hand of Darkness and The Little Prince. But I think that surly horse sounds intriguing, as does the humorous old man and the packed square awaiting the deceiver. Here is mine, from my WIP: (You can find the rest of this intro, plus the first chapter, on my blog)

The boy nodded sharply at the girl holding the holocam and began to speak a second after she started to record.


If you're curious, the link for the rest of it is here:
http://mary-j-59.livejournal.com/15814.html#cutid1

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gr
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Mon Oct 05, 2009 3:47 am Post

Which reminds me, it is high time to hand out a reverse ex libris award to matt who jokingly, but nonetheless correctly identified an opening line of mine.*

matt wrote:Greg,
I really thought you could do better than writing a Nancy Drew novel.


However, I should point out that was not the only opening line of mine slipped in there. Heh-heh.

~greg

* In case you are still wondering, yes, once upon a time I and my wife both wrote Nancy Drew novels. Though done as an exercise, these were no fanfic, but serious approaches to the subject: set in the time of and styled after the original (un-rewritten)** three Nancy Drew novels from 1931. While I do not advocate emulating bad writing as a general rule, we still think that was the best writing exercise we ever did. It was also crazy fun--living in a Nancy Drew world together for some months with all its improbabilities and unintentionally funny moments. We cracked ourselves up slipping Drewisms into our texts. For anyone tempted, we observe that a Nancy Drew novel of that time is just about exactly the size of a NaNoWriMo novel and just about the right sort of project for a WriMo. "Oh, Nancy, I'm so worried!"

** Only available in facsimile.
Last edited by gr on Mon Oct 05, 2009 1:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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vic-k
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Mon Oct 05, 2009 7:21 am Post

Culled from Wickipedia:
in the words of Bobbie Ann Mason, she is "as immaculate and self-possessed as a Miss America on tour. She is as cool as a Mata Hari and as sweet as Betty Crocker."[17] Nancy is wealthy, attractive, and amazingly talented:
At sixteen she 'had studied psychology in school and was familiar with the power of suggestion and association.' Nancy was a fine painter, spoke French, and had frequently run motor boats. She was a skilled driver who at sixteen 'flashed into the garage with a skill born of long practice.' The prodigy was a sure shot, an excellent swimmer, skillful oarsman, expert seamstress, gourmet cook, and a fine bridge player. Nancy brilliantly played tennis and golf, and rode like a cowboy. Nancy danced like Ginger Rogers and could administer first aid like the Mayo brothers.[18]

This kid`s a sicko!...right? :shock:
As a professional, you, are your one and only asset. Without integrity you are worthless, but with it, you are priceless.

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gr
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Mon Oct 05, 2009 1:03 pm Post

Dear sick-k,

Let this be your on-with: When Nancy spots a cougar while out horseback riding with two friends, she shoots it dead without further adieu--a single shot right between the eyes. So, you don't really want to mess with this girl.

Ah, but her real original source of cool comes from much simpler things than the later developments listed in Wickipedia [sic]. It is rooted in her startling independence. This is simply and effectively represented by her having her very own car (blue roadster)--which she likes to drive fast--by her being almost entirely unsupervised (no mom, and dad is forever going out of town), and by her standing up to grown-ups with a kind of unbridled ferocity.

A favorite moment: Nancy seeks permission from her father to go stay at an old mansion where someone is breaking in and sneaking around at night. Her father, as always, is conveniently leaving town on business. His line (roughly): "I don't know, Nancy, it might be dangerous...Here, you better take my revolver."

Aw gee, dad, you're the best!
-Greg

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vic-k
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Mon Oct 05, 2009 5:18 pm Post

Yeeeaahh!!! That`s what I said!! Sicko :shock:
There`s no...y`know...thingy...no... what d`y`callit! An`another thing...there`s no wottttsit...is th`. I mean... what the feck`s the boyfriend doin`, while she`s doin` all the sick stuff? He`s probably balls deep into S&M, and sniffin` around her best buddy, which is normal...init?
Sick t`me :?
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gr
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Mon Oct 05, 2009 6:56 pm Post

I know discussing Nancy Drew with you is a losing proposition, stic-k, but I feel I should straighten you out: the real ND does not have a boyfriend. The boyfriend later in the series is a lame manifestion of a meddling editor who wanted ND to be more "girly" and "domestic"--and not so kick-butt independent.

Don't believe everything you read in the Wickedpedia.

--Greg

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vic-k
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Mon Oct 05, 2009 7:58 pm Post

There is no evidence that that broad was anything but a sicko! Not once has she ever said : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0hpiAcW99yc
I rest my case M` Lud :wink:
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Jaysen
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Mon Oct 05, 2009 8:34 pm Post

I think that Mr K is demonstrating the technique commonly referred to as "pot calling kettle black". In some cultures this technique is referred as "takes one to know one" or, in rare occasions, the "man in the mirror" syndrome.

In any event, Mr K. has previously established that he is intimately familiar with what it takes to be labeled "sicko". All the personal experience…
Jaysen

I have a wife and 2 kids that I can only attribute to a wiggle, a giggle, and the realization that she was out of my league so I might as well be happy with her as a friend. 26 years marriage later, I can't imagine life without her. -Me 10/7/09

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vic-k
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Mon Oct 05, 2009 11:06 pm Post

:wink: :D
As a professional, you, are your one and only asset. Without integrity you are worthless, but with it, you are priceless.