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#17--A GREAT BEGINNING #2

These lessons, by one of our most consistent FaithWriters' Challenge Champions, should not be missed. So we're making a permanent home for them here.

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Postby glorybee » Tue Nov 09, 2010 6:08 pm

Cat, I found that a wonderful passage of exposition. Wouldn't change a thing!

You rock!
Jan Ackerson

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Postby CatLin » Wed Nov 10, 2010 6:46 pm

WHAT!!!!!!

:eyes

I suddenly have a huge lump in my throat.

Ok, this one is going in for the feedback. I know it took a really bizarre turn in the middle - maybe the judges found it too farfetched.

THANKS!!!!!!!!

(ok, now, feel free to get nitpicky if the tread slows down. :D)
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Postby pheeweed » Sun Nov 14, 2010 2:41 pm

I don't think I have any challenge entries that meet all the criteria. So I'll try this one.

Lizzie dashed into the library, hugging the weapons against the bodice of her red silk evening gown. Her eyes darted around the room, barely seeing the stacks of books. She had left the others in the dining room after spilling wine on her dress, but they would suspect her if she was gone long. She had to find a hiding place quickly.

This time it’s not going to end in murder.



The setting is a large house or hotel - there is a library and dining room. The occasion is a formal dinner - silk evening gown, wine, dining room. And Lizzie is agitated about the possibility of murder, and determined to do something about it.

Phee[/quote]
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Postby CatLin » Sun Nov 14, 2010 4:10 pm

That was Awesome, Phee! I got all that from the opening, and I DEFINITELY want to read more. :D
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Cat
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Postby glorybee » Sun Nov 14, 2010 7:24 pm

Great job, Phee--I agree with Cat. It definitely hooks the reader, and makes her want to read on.

Well done!
Jan Ackerson

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Postby pheeweed » Sun Nov 14, 2010 7:47 pm

Thank you. I wasn't sure if it gave enough information about the MC, but her name should tell the reader that she's young.

Here's the link if you want to read the rest:

http://www.faithwriters.com/wc-article-level3-previous.php?id=35777

And Jan, I forgot to say how glad I am that you're back. I'm the kind of learner who needs a lot of direction, so you're lessons are more helpful than analyzing the EC winners on my own.

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"And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise." Philippians 4:8 NLT

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Postby CatLin » Sun Nov 14, 2010 11:11 pm

pheeweed wrote:And Jan, I forgot to say how glad I am that you're back. I'm the kind of learner who needs a lot of direction, so you're lessons are more helpful than analyzing the EC winners on my own.

Phee


Ditto. I've learned TONS from your lessons and examples.
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Postby pheeweed » Mon Nov 15, 2010 12:40 pm

pheeweed wrote: so you're lessons are more helpful than analyzing the EC winners on my own.



But obviously I don't spend enough time reading Ann's lessons.
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"And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise." Philippians 4:8 NLT

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Postby ElizaEvans » Mon Nov 15, 2010 12:49 pm

Wow. You guys are all awesome.

Great thread, Jan.
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Re: #17--A GREAT BEGINNING #2

Postby FirstLove » Mon Apr 25, 2011 1:55 pm

glorybee wrote:Which of these two passages do you think does this best?

It was November of 1861, and 89-year-old Wilma Clemson was feeling very cold. It was going to be a long winter in Vermont.

OR

Wilma Clemson struggled to light the kerosene lamp, her knobbed fingers trembling, aching with cold. Her threadbare quilt would not be sufficient this winter.

is given a hint about Wilma’s circumstances: she’s probably not a wealthy woman (the ‘threadbare’ quilt).[/b]


Amazing difference in the two opening sentences, Jan.
I love your craggy old lady already, and want to know more about what happened to her. :)

I can hardly wait to participate in the lessons here; Now I must finish my "Outstanding" challenge entry due in 2 days and I will return. I have a thousand edits floating in my mind, after reading the threads in your helps here. LOL!

Off I go.
Thanks Again,
Love,
Debbie

:superhappy
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Re: #17--A GREAT BEGINNING #2

Postby angelbuck3 » Thu Jun 07, 2012 1:36 pm

This is my very first post in this forum, I actually just found you all today :).

Below will be the first two paragraphs of the book I am writing. It's my first attempt at any type of a book... so I'm going at this all blind. Hopefully, prayerfully, you can shine some light on it for me!

Without further hesitation:

She shivers against the cold on her skin; the sharpness of it stings the back of her throat with every breath. The snow is falling thicker, faster now. The flakes land on her skin and almost burn before they melt. She wonders when they will stop running or if they will find shelter before sundown.

With each step she takes the snow crunches beneath her bare, numb feet. She pulls her fur shawl a little tighter around her seventeen year old frame in an attempt to slow her shivering. She pictures her sandals still lying on the floor in their small hut. She wishes she had remembered to grab them in the rush out.


Any tips, any advice at all... very much welcomed!

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Re: #17--A GREAT BEGINNING #2

Postby glorybee » Thu Jun 07, 2012 6:53 pm

Angelbuck3, there's some great stuff here! You begin with conflict, and with short sentences that reflect the urgency of her movements. You introduce both character and setting, and you put the reader right into the action. My comments are few and minor:

angelbuck3 wrote:She shivers against the cold on her skin; the sharpness of it stings the back of her throat with every breath. The snow is falling thicker, faster now. The flakes land on her skin and almost burn before they melt. (the idea of snow 'burning' is slightly cliched; I've read it before.) She wonders when they(when you use this pronoun, the reader assumes that it refers to the most recent noun--in this case, the snow flakes. I had to do a mental readjustment when I realized you were talking about this girl and someone else) will stop running or if they will find shelter before sundown.

With each step she takes, the snow crunches beneath her bare, numb feet. She pulls her fur shawl a little tighter around her seventeen year old (I'd eliminate her age here. First of all, the sentence flows better without it. Second, precise age is rarely that important; it can be shown in context clues, dialogue, etc. far more effectively) frame in an attempt to slow her shivering. She pictures her sandals still lying on the floor in their small hut. She wishes she had remembered to grab them in the rush out. (I'd eliminate that phrase; the sentence is more effective without it.)


Most of what I've suggested is optional, though--writing's an art, not a science, and these are style points rather than grammatical issues. Good writing!
Jan Ackerson

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Re: #17--A GREAT BEGINNING #2

Postby lauralnm » Tue Jun 12, 2012 8:00 am

Angel: I'm no professional, but what I read, I found myself wanting more! As Jan put it, "good writing!"

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Re: #17--A GREAT BEGINNING #2

Postby angelbuck3 » Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:14 pm

Thank you so much!!

Very encouraging!

Actually I added in the age part to try and give more detail about the character... I didn't think I gave enough details initially after reading the "guidelines" to a good beginning. I should have stuck with my initial feeling.. :)

Thank you so much for the pointers!
I sincerely appreciate it!

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Re: #17--A GREAT BEGINNING #2

Postby angelbuck3 » Tue Jun 12, 2012 5:17 pm

Here it is edited...?


She shivers against the cold on her skin; the sharpness of it stings the back of her throat with every breath. The snow is falling thicker, faster now, making it more difficult to see ahead. She wonders when the elders will decide to stop running, or if they will find shelter before sundown.

With each step she takes, the snow crunches beneath her bare, numb feet. She pulls her fur shawl a little tighter around her thin body in an attempt to slow her shivering. She pictures her sandals still lying on the floor in their small hut. She wishes she had remembered to grab them.

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