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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Secret Agent Said........

secret agent said...
"The alarms were silent. That was a good thing. That meant no hull breach, no structural damage, no problems. But that didn’t explain why he was lying on the floor feeling light headed. He coughed, and tried to sit up. Pain seared through his body."

Lots of straightforward sentences here. Try varying length/structure (maybe combining the last two?) to convey sense of disorientation and drive the narrative forward.

I was pretty engaged by this one overall, so these are super-nitpicky comments. I wanted something more somehow from the reveal that the rescuers aren't--I think it's that that first line of dialog sounds exactly like the narrative before (in the MC's internal POV) and I'd like this scavenger character to be more differentiated stylistically. Also the double-dip on the word "see" in back to back dialog popped to me.

July 17, 2008 10:46 AM


The agent was pretty engaged. Okay, it's not love and there are edits to be done but the agent doesn't hate me! This is the first time I've put up anything and had an agent comment. I'm so excited.

The other posts don't like the lack of name and feel they can't engage with the main character. I've resisted the temptation to say that this isn't the MC, the MC won't arrive for another 12 pages, and this guy doesn't get a name until Book 3. Which I do have to explain since his memory hasn't been tampered with yet.

Anyways, there is hope for DoJ after all!


  1. I know the feeling! Secret agent said mine was close, but not quite. I think that's very exciting news. :-)

  2. I saw yours up, I think the openings much improved. Just a few more tweaks and it'll be beautiful. Have you finished writing it all the way yet?

  3. Yeah, L! Secret Agent hasn't gotten to mine yet. I still feel bad about not having a complete manuscript; makes me feel like I've broken the rules or something :~

  4. Mine's pretty much completed. I'm adding a couple chapters in the middle, but the rest is mostly polishing.

  5. I say mine is finished, it has an ending page, but I've got some massive rewrites (that I'm avoiding if you can't tell) toward the end.

    Beth- I saw several picture books, a short story, and something I know has only the first few chapters done on that contest board. Don't stress it.

    Okay.... off to actually work.

    I is slacker!!!!

  6. Beth don't feel bad, I'm one of the incomplete entrants...but it was worth the comments!

    I'm slacking too! :D

    (Am I the only one not bothered that much of Ice not being named?)

  7. I guess I'm not bothered THAT much by it. Maybe if the salvagers had names they called each other... less "he"s and "him"s. But is this Ice? I haven't read enough of the story to know.

  8. It isn't Ice on the ground. If it were Ice I'd have named him. It's actually V. Ice thinks it's V late in the book but at the end finds out that V is dead, and has been dead for the whole duration of the case. So Ice writes it off and that thread doesn't get wrapped up.

    I'm kind of worried about that actually. I'm leaving some threads untied to be dealt with in book 2 and 3. But I'm afraid the ending won't be good enough for a stand alone debut novel.

    Which is why Bryson is in the works.