More first line comments: (Thank you, Mary, for drawing my attention to that I had missed 'em!)
nom wrote:She was alone.
Interests me, but it really depends on where you go from here.
Mollys Mum wrote:She knew the fence was electric when she put her hand through it.
She was careful. There were three strands, of white braided plastic, and room to slip her palm between them, towards the mare whose history she did not know. A horse she had seen on countless drives between the oncology clinic and her townhouse. Unkempt, her shoulder thick with muscle, bristling with dull fur like a dog with the mange.
I've already told y' what I think o' this. If I may sum it up for the public view so mary
won't feel so singled out:
"When" may be the wrong subordinating conjunction in that first sentence, since it makes it sound like she found out by
sticking her hand in. "Before" might work better.
Cut the first two commas from the third sentence. That's a prepositional phrase, and the commas disconnect it from its subject.
Those last two sentences are fragments, in case you didn't know, and that latter one is vague about whether it refers to the horse or the lady. (Note that the "her" referred to prior to that fragment was the lady.)
mary wrote:The boy nodded sharply at the girl holding the holocam and began to speak a second after she started to record.
Ah, erm. Hrm-haw. This is going to sound mighty strange and blunt, okay?
My first thought is that this line can't stand by itself. It needs to be surrounded by more so I could tell for sure, but I think you're still working on developing your writing style. Possibly younger or newer to the world of writing as a hobby, and if you've worked on style itself, I'd guess it's only in the past five years.
The line strikes me as bland, forgettable. I read it, then thought about something else, then came back and had to reread it to make my comment. When I skim some more paragraphs, the situation sounds interesting, but I'm not feeling drawn into it. I think you could benefit from someone revising a section for you to demonstrate how the same scene can be displayed in different ways. If you'd be open to such a thing.
I intend this nicely, mary
. I hope you don't take offense.
I'll give you an opening line of my own to rip to pieces as a peace offering. I recently wrote the short story "Romeo and Jillian" for a friendly competition
over on Patricia Briggs' fan forums, and include the link if you want to see and mock the rest. (And yes, I only dish out what I can accept in return.)
Romeo and Jillian wrote:Raucous laughter spilled from men and women both as the wine overflowed. Jillian gathered her skirt in her free hand and dodged the flirts and sots who neglected to notice the slim girl in the host's livery who passed by.