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View Full Version : Exercise 2 -- Deep Point of View In Dialogue



Laurie2
August 18th, 2008, 03:27 PM
Dialogue is one of the key places that deep point of view flounders (even among authors who usually practice deep point of view).

If you find after a passage of dialogue that you have to go back before the dialogue to figure out whose point of view the dialogue is in there is a very strong likelihood that your viewpoint is in shallow rather than deep viewpoint.

Many authors think of dialogue as only the verbal experience of their characters but if you think about the dialogues you have in your own life you will realize that dialogue encompasses much more than just what is said.

Dialogue is an experience for your viewpoint character, however the experience is much broader than just what is said. Dialogue also encompasses how it is said, what is thought as something is said, and after it is said. The viewpoint character's experience of the dialogue also encompasses the verbal and non-verbal responses of the other characters in the scene who are non-viewpoint characters.

For exercise 2, what I would like is a section of dialogue which shows the dialogue EXPERIENCE of your viewpoint character.

When working on exercise 2 remember that your viewpoint character experiences many things in dialogue besides just what they say. They also experience what they think as a result of something said to them. They experience feelings associated with what is said. They experience the verbal and non-verbal responses of the other character(s) in the scene who are not viewpoint characters.

Remember that character experience has four aspects, even in dialogue. These are mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual. Incorporate these aspects of the character's reality into the dialogue scene.

Remember it is not:

"Blah...blah...blah."

Big paragraph of description and moving the characters around.

"Blay...blah...blah."

Big paragraph of description.


Instead it should be:

"Blah....blah...blah," anchored with a physical action, a thought, a feeling, or the viewpoint character's observation of the non-viewpoint character. These anchors should be snippets...they should be woven through your dialogue in very small bits.

Remember too that people do not speak in lengthy speeches. People speak. Then another character speaks. Then the viewpoint character responds either verbally or non-verbally.

Incorporate all of these elements into your 1 page or less dialogue excerpt for exercise 2.

MeiraP
August 18th, 2008, 11:57 PM
“Okay, lady,” the police officer said.
“What?” Lacey asked indignantly.
“I think you need to rest and sleep it off.”
Lacey tried to focus on his face. “Are you taking me to the drunk tank?” Before she could process the answer to her own obvious question, another commotion ensued.
“Penny!” a man shouted as he pushed his way through the gaping crowd. It was the man from the corner who had been watching her.
Lacey’s throat tightened.
The man approached and touched her gently. “Are you all right?”
Lacey only stared, her eyes wide and unsure.
The man spoke to the cop. “It’s my sister. I’m so sorry she’s causing trouble. She just got fired. An ugly mess.” He lowered his head and whispered, “We thought she might go on a bender. I was supposed to be keeping an eye on her.”
The officer nodded in understanding. “Can you take her home then?”
“Wait a minute,” Lacey interjected, her voice shaking. “I don’t know this man.”
The stranger sighed and shrugged.
The cop shook his head and patted the man on the shoulder. “Good luck, pal.”
“Wait, don’t go. Take me to the drunk tank,” Lacey hollered in a panic.
But the police officer had already disappeared and the crowd began to disperse. The stranger put his hands on Lacey’s shoulders and firmly guided her away from the bar. She struggled in vain. “What are you doing? Who are you?”
“Ian.” He ushered her out the door.
Lacey trembled. “Ian, I’m not going back there. I’ll bite your hands off. You can’t make me go.”
Ian laughed.
“I’m serious.”
“I don’t even want to know what rehab you escaped from. It will just get me further involved.”
Rehab? A calm washed over Lacey. It was not unlike the peace that enveloped her after a few sips of Jack Daniels. He doesn’t know who I am.
“See ya around then,” Ian mumbled as he walked away.
“Hey, wait! Who the ____ is Penny?”
Ian did an about face. He scowled. “You're welcome for saving you a night at the detox center. You ungrateful little—”
“I’m sorry. Thank you.” Lacey took a deep breath of the fresh summer evening air. Streetlights blurred beneath her comfortable buzz. “Why did you help me?”
Ian turned away and sauntered down the street. Lacey stumbled to catch up with him, and she fell flat on her face. Ian came to a stop but did not look back.
“Dammit,” he whispered harshly as he turned to help her. “Look, my buddy has an apartment around the corner. I’ve been staying there this week. You’re welcome to sleep it off on the couch.” He eyed her suspiciously. “But I’m going to lock up your purse so you don’t rob the place and disappear.”
Lacey clutched her purse. “What makes you think I’d steal from you?”
He rolled his eyes. “Addicts. Listen, it’s up to you.”
“How do I know you’re not a serial killer?” Her voice was cautious but strong.
He chuckled. “And you are so prepared this moment to fight off a serial killer. If you’d rather stand here and wait for another cop or your friend the serial killer, be my guest.”
“Wait.”
He folded his arms.
“I’ll come with you, but—”
“But what?”
She frowned. “But I don’t like p____es.”
He grimaced. “Trust me. The last place my p____ wants to be is near you.”

destinyrae
August 19th, 2008, 09:31 AM
Her reflection in the mirror blurred as her eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry over him," she said through gritted teeth with a finger pointed in accusation. "He is not worth it. Never, ever cry over a man."
The volume of her voice grew and the echo that carried inside the public restroom startled her, her body reacting with a jolt. She placed both hands against the cold marble counter top and pressed against it with all her might, willing the hard stone to claim her heart and turn it hard and cold.
"He doesn't even know you exist," she whispered.
"Mommy, who are you talking to?"
Her daughter's voice penetrated the emotional fog. She straightened, blinked rapidly to dry her eyes and smiled shakily at the five-year-old. Her mommy-voice came to the surface naturally. "I was just thinking out loud, sweetheart."
"Why are you crying?" the little girl asked, fingering the end of her dress as she spoke.
She straightened her posture, tilted her chin and met the child's gaze. "I am not crying. I will not cry. Your daddy left us, baby, he's gone. Neither of us will think about him or cry about him again. That's a promise."
The child's eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry. I forbid it!"

MelanieR
August 19th, 2008, 07:21 PM
The sound of the whistle signaled they were getting ready to dock Carrie shook herself out of the memory and looked around for Simon. He was sitting on a bench playing his game. Walking to him, she smiled. She loved this boy with all her heart.
“Hey bud, you ready?”
“Yep, I can’t wait to see Gran and Pap. They know we’re coming right?”
“Nope it’s a surprise.”
“Awesome, they’re going to be surprised aren’t they?”
“Yes they are. Simon before we go I have to tell you something.”
Simon sat up straight he knew that tone and it meant trouble. “What is it Mom? You sound so sad.” Sitting down Carrie hated knowing she was about to take the sparkle out of her sons eyes.
“It’s Gran Simon. She’s sick. She has cancer.”
“What? No she doesn’t.” He pushed her hand away and walked to the railing.
“She does honey, but she’s getting treatment. Still, they don’t know if it will work. Uncle David said she’s thin, but in good spirits and I think if anything is going to make her feel better, it’s spending the summer with her favorite grandson.”
Simon pushed her hand away from his shoulder. “We should have come every summer Mom. You wait until she’s dieing to bring me here. This could be my last summer with her. I hate you for this.”

Lee Rush
August 19th, 2008, 08:11 PM
"Quiet!! I didn't give you permission to make noise."


His voice was cold and measured and when she looked up at him, his eyes were cold as well. Those same eyes that were warm, even hot with passion the night before now bored into her like icicles.


"Did I say you could look at me?"


She lowered her eyes immediately and shook her head slowly.


“Am I supposed to hear your head rattle, bitch? Answer me when I ask you a question, or are you so stupid you didn’t understand that as a question?”


“No, you didn’t say I could look at you. I apologize.”



"You apologize…what, bitch?”

She was afraid to look up at him, but she didn’t understand. She trembled before him, afraid that he would hit her again…and he did. Another hard slap across her face and her ears were ringing again. She bit her lip to keep from crying out, but he grabbed her hair again and pulled it and she did moan softly.


“Sir, bitch!!! Call me Sir!! Or Master! Do you understand me?” He was shouting at her and she could feel the spittle spraying on her skin as he did.


“Yes, Sir…I understand.”


He pulled the closet door open beside her.

Laurie2
August 21st, 2008, 02:41 PM
The Original:

“Okay, lady,” the police officer said.
“What?” Lacey asked indignantly.
“I think you need to rest and sleep it off.”
Lacey tried to focus on his face. “Are you taking me to the drunk tank?” Before she could process the answer to her own obvious question, another commotion ensued.
“Penny!” a man shouted as he pushed his way through the gaping crowd. It was the man from the corner who had been watching her.
Lacey’s throat tightened.
The man approached and touched her gently. “Are you all right?”
Lacey only stared, her eyes wide and unsure.
The man spoke to the cop. “It’s my sister. I’m so sorry she’s causing trouble. She just got fired. An ugly mess.” He lowered his head and whispered, “We thought she might go on a bender. I was supposed to be keeping an eye on her.”
The officer nodded in understanding. “Can you take her home then?”
“Wait a minute,” Lacey interjected, her voice shaking. “I don’t know this man.”
The stranger sighed and shrugged.
The cop shook his head and patted the man on the shoulder. “Good luck, pal.”
“Wait, don’t go. Take me to the drunk tank,” Lacey hollered in a panic.
But the police officer had already disappeared and the crowd began to disperse. The stranger put his hands on Lacey’s shoulders and firmly guided her away from the bar. She struggled in vain. “What are you doing? Who are you?”
“Ian.” He ushered her out the door.
Lacey trembled. “Ian, I’m not going back there. I’ll bite your hands off. You can’t make me go.”
Ian laughed.
“I’m serious.”
“I don’t even want to know what rehab you escaped from. It will just get me further involved.”
Rehab? A calm washed over Lacey. It was not unlike the peace that enveloped her after a few sips of Jack Daniels. He doesn’t know who I am.
“See ya around then,” Ian mumbled as he walked away.
“Hey, wait! Who the ____ is Penny?”
Ian did an about face. He scowled. “You're welcome for saving you a night at the detox center. You ungrateful little—”
“I’m sorry. Thank you.” Lacey took a deep breath of the fresh summer evening air. Streetlights blurred beneath her comfortable buzz. “Why did you help me?”
Ian turned away and sauntered down the street. Lacey stumbled to catch up with him, and she fell flat on her face. Ian came to a stop but did not look back.
“Dammit,” he whispered harshly as he turned to help her. “Look, my buddy has an apartment around the corner. I’ve been staying there this week. You’re welcome to sleep it off on the couch.” He eyed her suspiciously. “But I’m going to lock up your purse so you don’t rob the place and disappear.”
Lacey clutched her purse. “What makes you think I’d steal from you?”
He rolled his eyes. “Addicts. Listen, it’s up to you.”
“How do I know you’re not a serial killer?” Her voice was cautious but strong.
He chuckled. “And you are so prepared this moment to fight off a serial killer. If you’d rather stand here and wait for another cop or your friend the serial killer, be my guest.”
“Wait.”
He folded his arms.
“I’ll come with you, but—”
“But what?”
She frowned. “But I don’t like p____es.”
He grimaced. “Trust me. The last place my p____ wants to be is near you.”


The Mark Up:

“What?” Lacey asked indignantly.
“I think you need to rest and sleep it off.” [Could use a bit of physical description of him here...or as she sees him. What is his voice like...what does she notice about him?]
Lacey tried to focus on his face. “Are you taking me to the drunk tank?” Before she could process the answer to her own obvious question, another commotion ensued.
“Penny!” a man shouted as he pushed his way through the gaping crowd. It was the man from the corner who had been watching her.
Lacey’s throat tightened. [It seems she would need a stronger reaction here. Either he is her brother and she knows it or he is not and she knows that. She doesn't react strongly enough with the scene to show what her thoughts, feelings, and physical sensations are. You need more...as you need to convey her take on her situation to the reader, through her perception of it].
The man approached and touched her gently. “Are you all right?” [she needs a response. She must feel something...even if she doesn't feel any connection or any fear she would still feel emptiness, uncertainty, a sense of dangling outside of reality maybe.]
Lacey only stared, her eyes wide and unsure. [You are in Lacey's viewpoint. She would not be aware of her own eyes staring wide and unsure. You need to be INSIDE her...describing the experiences that she has. What does she think? What does she feel emotionally? Physically? Weave it in in her responses to the dialogue going on around her.]
The man spoke to the cop. “It’s my sister. I’m so sorry she’s causing trouble. She just got fired. An ugly mess.” He lowered his head and whispered, “We thought she might go on a bender. I was supposed to be keeping an eye on her.” [Lacey needs a response to this...her response would depend on whether she is Penny, or whether she is Lacey, whether the man is her brother or whether he is a stranger. Even if she has amnesia she has a reality that is real to her...and since you are in her viewpoint you need to show THAT reality. She does not seem to be responding to the situation around her. Even if she has amnesia she would be confused...but then she wouldn't probably think of her name as Lacey if she didn't know what her name was you would avoid using her name until someone else uses it...and then would have her think of herself as that name. It is ALL about her reality when you are in her point of view. Other characters will have different realities and will provide a different view of the situation when it is their turn to have the viewpoint.]
The officer nodded in understanding. “Can you take her home then?”
“Wait a minute,” Lacey interjected, her voice shaking. “I don’t know this man.” [You need to show physical reaction sooner...emotional reaction sooner...if she really doesn't know the man...then that would be primal. Even if she is drunk...even if she has amnesia.]
The stranger sighed and shrugged.
The cop shook his head and patted the man on the shoulder. “Good luck, pal.”
“Wait, don’t go. Take me to the drunk tank,” Lacey hollered in a panic. [Her hollering in panic doesn't SHOW the emotion. It tells the emotion. The emotion here is not part of the fabric of the story, it is something that is sitting on top of the fabric...the emotional thread (and the physical components that relate to the emotions) need to be woven in with the physical action/dialogue of the scene.]
But the police officer had already disappeared and the crowd began to disperse. The stranger put his hands on Lacey’s shoulders and firmly guided her away from the bar. She struggled in vain. “What are you doing? Who are you?” [You need more specific detail here. You are telling, not showing. You are telling me the stranger put his hands on her shoulders and firmly guided her away...what EXACTLY does that feel like to Lacey? Is his hand just firm, or is it more menacing than that. If she is struggling in vain then you need to show more struggle. His hand is on her shoulder....struggling away from that kind of hold should not be that difficult. You need to SHOW the action...not just tell it. Integrate more complete details. More of her feelings (both emotional and physical)...more thoughts...more physical description of things surrounding her.]
“Ian.” He ushered her out the door. [Out the door of where. I didn't realize they were inside.]
Lacey trembled. “Ian, I’m not going back there. I’ll bite your hands off. You can’t make me go.” [There is not a sense of her thought process...or of struggle here...or of fear...which would seem logical in the situation. There is no sense of where there is (I realize that may be covered in an earlier portion of the story...but if it is a terrible place she doesn't want to go back to it would be ever-present in her mind. If she is going to try to cajole him out of taking her back then she needs to think about that...showing her mental thoughts between the bits of dialogue.]
Ian laughed.
“I’m serious.”
“I don’t even want to know what rehab you escaped from. It will just get me further involved.”
Rehab? A calm washed over Lacey. It was not unlike the peace that enveloped her after a few sips of Jack Daniels. He doesn’t know who I am.
“See ya around then,” Ian mumbled as he walked away.
“Hey, wait! Who the ____ is Penny?” [The energy of the scene seems to shift here. It was about Lacey and needed to be in her point of view...but it seems like here it becomes really about Ian and since Lacey doesn't know anything about Ian, it seems like you need to get into Ian's point of view here...]
Ian did an about face. He scowled. “You're welcome for saving you a night at the detox center. You ungrateful little—” [This seems a bit harsh suddenly. There is no sense really of what is going on in the scene. You have mostly people talking...the thoughts, feelings, motivations, are largely missing...which makes the piece confusing to the reader.]
“I’m sorry. Thank you.” Lacey took a deep breath of the fresh summer evening air. Streetlights blurred beneath her comfortable buzz. “Why did you help me?”
Ian turned away and sauntered down the street. Lacey stumbled to catch up with him, and she fell flat on her face. Ian came to a stop but did not look back. [If you are going to stay in her viewpoint then she needs an emotional response to falling and to Ian not helping her.]
“Dammit,” he whispered harshly as he turned to help her. “Look, my buddy has an apartment around the corner. I’ve been staying there this week. You’re welcome to sleep it off on the couch.” He eyed her suspiciously. “But I’m going to lock up your purse so you don’t rob the place and disappear.”
Lacey clutched her purse. “What makes you think I’d steal from you?”
He rolled his eyes. “Addicts. Listen, it’s up to you.” [She needs to be sizing him up here if you are going to be in his point of view. What makes her trust him? What makes her think he is not a serial killer?]
“How do I know you’re not a serial killer?” Her voice was cautious but strong.
He chuckled. “And you are so prepared this moment to fight off a serial killer. If you’d rather stand here and wait for another cop or your friend the serial killer, be my guest.”
“Wait.”
He folded his arms. [I would like to see an expression on his face here. Some description of him. Is he tall, short, muscular, thin, heavy? What color of hair. Smooth shaven or facial hair. How old? These are all details that should be woven in to the interactions between them.]
“I’ll come with you, but—”
“But what?” [There needs to be a sense of her emotion here...if you are going to be in her point of view...otherwise you would be into his emotion here.]
She frowned. “But I don’t like p____es.”
He grimaced. “Trust me. The last place my p____ wants to be is near you.”

Sounds like a truly gripping first meeting...but there is a lot of work to be done on the dialogue. Remember that deep point of view in dialogue is not really any different than deep point of view anywhere else...except that you are weaving in an additional piece...that being what is said. Some authors want the dialogue to be quick...which works sometimes...but usually dialogue is stronger when you can envision the characters, when you know what they are thinking or feeling...when their motivations and interpretations are interspersed with what they say. You have the layer that is what they say. Now you need to weave in the layers that are what they think, what they feel, what they sense through their five senses.

Laurie2
August 21st, 2008, 02:53 PM
The Original:


Her reflection in the mirror blurred as her eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry over him," she said through gritted teeth with a finger pointed in accusation. "He is not worth it. Never, ever cry over a man."
The volume of her voice grew and the echo that carried inside the public restroom startled her, her body reacting with a jolt. She placed both hands against the cold marble counter top and pressed against it with all her might, willing the hard stone to claim her heart and turn it hard and cold.
"He doesn't even know you exist," she whispered.
"Mommy, who are you talking to?"
Her daughter's voice penetrated the emotional fog. She straightened, blinked rapidly to dry her eyes and smiled shakily at the five-year-old. Her mommy-voice came to the surface naturally. "I was just thinking out loud, sweetheart."
"Why are you crying?" the little girl asked, fingering the end of her dress as she spoke.
She straightened her posture, tilted her chin and met the child's gaze. "I am not crying. I will not cry. Your daddy left us, baby, he's gone. Neither of us will think about him or cry about him again. That's a promise."
The child's eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry. I forbid it!"

The Mark Up:

Her reflection in the mirror blurred as her eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry over him," she said through gritted teeth with a finger pointed in accusation. [don't care for the finger pointed in accusation here. The vision I am supposed to buy is that she is in front of the mirror...crying...pointing her finger at the mirror as she talks to herself. I find the image difficult to buy. I think it is stronger without that bit.] "He is not worth it. Never, ever cry over a man."
The volume of her voice grew [why? -- there doesn't seem to be a motive for her voice getting louder] and the echo that carried inside the public restroom startled her, her body reacting [reacted] with a jolt. She placed both hands against the cold marble counter top and pressed against it with all her might, willing the hard stone to claim her heart and turn it hard and cold.
"He doesn't even know you exist," she whispered.
"Mommy, who are you talking to?"
Her daughter's voice penetrated the emotional fog. She straightened, blinked rapidly to dry her eyes and smiled shakily at the five-year-old. Her mommy-voice came to the surface naturally. "I was just thinking out loud, sweetheart."
"Why are you crying?" the little girl asked, fingering the end of her dress as she spoke.
She straightened her posture, tilted her chin and met the child's gaze. "I am not crying. I will not cry. Your daddy left us, baby, he's gone. Neither of us will think about him or cry about him again. That's a promise." [Hmmmm...she's not very heroic here. She's dumping a load of emotional baggage on the child. I would like to see more motivation for her doing this. Does she think it is a good idea for some reason?]
The child's eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry. I forbid it!" [I don't see motivation for this. There are pieces that don't feel like they fit here. She seems at first like a good mother, with the mommy-voice and so on...but here...she's not helping her child deal with the loss of her father in a healthy way. Her motivation is not clear.]

Laurie2
August 21st, 2008, 03:01 PM
The Original:


"Quiet!! I didn't give you permission to make noise."


His voice was cold and measured and when she looked up at him, his eyes were cold as well. Those same eyes that were warm, even hot with passion the night before now bored into her like icicles.


"Did I say you could look at me?"


She lowered her eyes immediately and shook her head slowly.


“Am I supposed to hear your head rattle, bitch? Answer me when I ask you a question, or are you so stupid you didn’t understand that as a question?”


“No, you didn’t say I could look at you. I apologize.”



"You apologize…what, bitch?”

She was afraid to look up at him, but she didn’t understand. She trembled before him, afraid that he would hit her again…and he did. Another hard slap across her face and her ears were ringing again. She bit her lip to keep from crying out, but he grabbed her hair again and pulled it and she did moan softly.


“Sir, bitch!!! Call me Sir!! Or Master! Do you understand me?” He was shouting at her and she could feel the spittle spraying on her skin as he did.


“Yes, Sir…I understand.”


He pulled the closet door open beside her.


The Mark Up:

"Quiet!! [Do not do dual exclamation points. They are frowned upon everywhere I know of.] I didn't give you permission to make noise."


His voice was cold and measured and when she looked up at him, his eyes were cold as well. Those same eyes that were warm, even hot with passion the night before now bored into her like icicles.


"Did I say you could look at me?"


She lowered her eyes immediately and shook her head slowly.


“Am I supposed to hear your head rattle, bitch? Answer me when I ask you a question, or are you so stupid you didn’t understand that as a question?”


“No, you didn’t say I could look at you. I apologize.” [She needs an emotional reaction here...remember that emotions have physical components. Weave in the physical components of her emotions. In other words, something like, she felt hope die within her and helpless dread expand within her being.]



"You apologize…what, bitch?”

She was afraid to look up at him, but she didn’t understand. She trembled before him, afraid that he would hit her again…and he did. Another hard slap across her face and her ears were ringing again. [Need a sense of the physical pain of the slap...her teeth biting her lip...the hair pulling. You need description of her experience, which would surely include these things.] She bit her lip to keep from crying out, but he grabbed her hair again and pulled it and she did moan softly.


“Sir, bitch!!! [again...one exclamation point.] Call me Sir!! Or Master! Do you understand me?” He was shouting at her and she could feel the spittle spraying on her skin as he did.


“Yes, Sir…I understand.”


He pulled the closet door open beside her.

Lee Rush
August 21st, 2008, 07:17 PM
Revised exercise 2

"Quiet! I didn't give you permission to make noise."

His voice was cold and measured and when she looked up at him, his eyes were cold as well. Those same eyes that were warm, even hot with passion the night before now bored into her like icicles.

"Did I say you could look at me?"

She lowered her eyes immediately and shook her head slowly.

“Am I supposed to hear your head rattle, bitch? Answer me when I ask you a question, or are you so stupid you didn’t understand that as a question?”

“No, you didn’t say I could look at you. I apologize.” She was trembling with fear, so confused, not knowing or understanding what was going on. Why was he doing this? After all the sweetness last night? All the passion? What could she possibly have done to warrant this?

"You apologize…what, bitch?”

She was afraid to look up at him, but she didn’t understand. She trembled before him, afraid that he would hit her again…and he did. Another hard slap across her face and her ears were ringing again. The hot metallic taste of blood foilled her mouth and she realized that she had almost bitten through her lip. She continued to hold the lip between her teeth though, to keep from crying out but he grabbed her hair again and pulled hard causing another soft moan to escape.

“Sir, bitch! Call me Sir! Or Master! Do you understand me?” He was shouting at her and she could feel the spittle spraying on her skin as he did.

“Yes, Sir…I understand.”

He pulled the closet door open beside her.

Laurie2
August 22nd, 2008, 09:46 AM
Revised exercise 2

"Quiet! I didn't give you permission to make noise."

His voice was cold and measured and when she looked up at him, his eyes were cold as well. Those same eyes that were warm, even hot with passion the night before now bored into her like icicles.

"Did I say you could look at me?"

She lowered her eyes immediately and shook her head slowly.

“Am I supposed to hear your head rattle, bitch? Answer me when I ask you a question, or are you so stupid you didn’t understand that as a question?”

“No, you didn’t say I could look at you. I apologize.” She was trembling with fear, so confused, not knowing or understanding what was going on. Why was he doing this? After all the sweetness last night? All the passion? What could she possibly have done to warrant this?

"You apologize…what, bitch?”

She was afraid to look up at him, but she didn’t understand. She trembled before him, afraid that he would hit her again…and he did. Another hard slap across her face and her ears were ringing again. The hot metallic taste of blood foilled her mouth and she realized that she had almost bitten through her lip. She continued to hold the lip between her teeth though, to keep from crying out but he grabbed her hair again and pulled hard causing another soft moan to escape.

“Sir, bitch! Call me Sir! Or Master! Do you understand me?” He was shouting at her and she could feel the spittle spraying on her skin as he did.

“Yes, Sir…I understand.”

He pulled the closet door open beside her.



The Mark Up:

"Quiet! I didn't give you permission to make noise."

His voice was cold and measured and when she looked up at him, his eyes were cold as well. Those same eyes that were warm, even hot with passion the night before now bored into her like icicles.

"Did I say you could look at me?"

She lowered her eyes immediately and shook her head slowly.

“Am I supposed to hear your head rattle, bitch? Answer me when I ask you a question, or are you so stupid you didn’t understand that as a question?”

“No, you didn’t say I could look at you. I apologize.” She was trembling with fear, so confused, not knowing or understanding what was going on. Why was he doing this? [This is a definite improvement...however, it still sits on the surface of the fabric of your story...it isn't A PART OF THE FABRIC YET because you are still straddling the line...telling...where you could show. To show instead think about and incorporate these things...first of all...she doesn't seem surprised by his treatment of her earlier in the exchange. Nor does she seem fearful...so you need to weave in the feeling by showing actions that show fear and physical sensations that show fear. Most of us have a reaction when someone calls us a bitch. Either it makes us ANGRY...or it makes us feel less than....weak...helpless...she doesn't seem to have this reaction. What does she feel when he calls her a bitch, when he talks down to her? Does she have a mental plan for getting through this...or does she feel it is her due? Think after each place he speaks....what does she think? What does she feel emotionally? What does she feel physically? Remember that much of what we think of emotions are processed as physical sensations. You do not need to weave in everything that she experiences...but you need to weave in the pieces that give the reader an experience that is like hers. She needs to feel more in response to his words. As a reader I am going through the piece thinking I would feel angry...I would feel outrage...I would feel fear...I would be thinking of the moment when I could leave. Your character isn't doing enough of these things...so the reader has nowhere for that focus.] After all the sweetness last night? All the passion? [Show her memory of the sweetness and passion. What did he do that was sweet? What was their passion like. Show me snippets of her memory. This will heighten the emotional impact of feeling betrayed...caught off guard.]What could she possibly have done to warrant this?

"You apologize…what, bitch?”

She was afraid to look up at him, but she didn’t understand. She trembled before him, [I see her as cowering here...how does she react to her own trembling or cowering? I would like to see her maybe hate the way she cowered or trembled in front of him. I would like to see her hate his power over her.] afraid that he would hit her again…and he did. Another hard slap across her face [There is no stinging here...and it feels like it is missing] and her ears were ringing again. The hot metallic taste of blood foilled [filled] her mouth and she realized that she had almost bitten through her lip. [The biting through her lip is a good detail. I like it.] She continued to hold the lip between her teeth though, to keep from crying out but he grabbed her hair again and pulled hard causing another soft moan to escape.

“Sir, bitch! Call me Sir! Or Master! Do you understand me?” He was shouting at her and she could feel the spittle spraying on her skin as he did.

“Yes, Sir…I understand.”

He pulled the closet door open beside her.

Laurie2
August 22nd, 2008, 10:25 AM
The sound of the whistle signaled they were getting ready to dock Carrie shook herself out of the memory and looked around for Simon. He was sitting on a bench playing his game. Walking to him, she smiled. She loved this boy with all her heart.
“Hey bud, you ready?”
“Yep, I can’t wait to see Gran and Pap. They know we’re coming right?”
“Nope it’s a surprise.”
“Awesome, they’re going to be surprised aren’t they?”
“Yes they are. Simon before we go I have to tell you something.”
Simon sat up straight he knew that tone and it meant trouble. “What is it Mom? You sound so sad.” Sitting down Carrie hated knowing she was about to take the sparkle out of her sons eyes.
“It’s Gran Simon. She’s sick. She has cancer.”
“What? No she doesn’t.” He pushed her hand away and walked to the railing.
“She does honey, but she’s getting treatment. Still, they don’t know if it will work. Uncle David said she’s thin, but in good spirits and I think if anything is going to make her feel better, it’s spending the summer with her favorite grandson.”
Simon pushed her hand away from his shoulder. “We should have come every summer Mom. You wait until she’s dieing to bring me here. This could be my last summer with her. I hate you for this.”


The Mark Up:

The sound of the whistle signaled they were getting ready to dock Carrie shook herself out of the memory and looked around for Simon. [Given the outcome of the paragraph I would like to see your heroine more melancholy. She doesn't seem enmeshed in the emotion of the scene. I would think she would be dreading telling her son the news about his grandmother and the news would be weighing heavily on her as well. You need to structure the details at the opening to set your emotional stage a little more strongly. Give the whistle more meaning. It can have a sound which makes her feelings stronger or the whistle can have memories which make her more melancholy.] He was sitting on a bench playing his game. [What he is doing here...playing a game...as if he had not a care in the world, should have an emotional impact on her because she is going to take it all away and give him worry and upheaval.] Walking to him, she smiled. She loved this boy with all her heart.[See if you can find a way to show love...Love should be evident in the way she sees him...what she thinks when she does see him.]
“Hey bud, you ready?”
“Yep, I can’t wait to see Gran and Pap. They know we’re coming right?”
“Nope it’s a surprise.”
“Awesome, they’re going to be surprised aren’t they?”
“Yes they are. Simon before we go I have to tell you something.” he knew that tone and it meant trouble. [This switches to Simon's point of view...so you can show the tone of voice that he hears...you can show his mom's body language.]“What is it Mom? You sound so sad.” Sitting down Carrie hated knowing [This shifts back to Carrie's viewpoint. The viewpoint shift from Carrie to Simon and back to Carrie is much too quick. You need to stay in one point of view for awhile once you shift.] she was about to take the sparkle out of her sons eyes. [I would think this would be a bit deeper...it's not just the sparkle out of his eyes...it's giving him worry...probably the same worry she has. Bring in more of what she feels inside...physically...emotionally as she faces her son with this news]
“It’s Gran Simon. She’s sick. [I would like to see a pause here...a physical action on Carrie's part or her seeing an expression or reaction on Simon's part.] She has cancer.”
[I would like to see Simon's body language through Carrie's viewpoint here. What does he do? What does she feel as a result?] “What? No she doesn’t.” [I would like to see her react to his reaction. She would surely know the same feeling of denial...of not wanting to believe that it was true.] He pushed her hand away and walked to the railing. [I wasn't aware her hand was there to be pushed away. Make more out of the hand...where was it...on his shoulder?]
“She does honey, but she’s getting treatment. Still, they don’t know if it will work. Uncle David said she’s thin, but in good spirits and I think if anything is going to make her feel better, it’s spending the summer with her favorite grandson.”
Simon pushed her hand away from his shoulder. [he stood up and moved away from her hand. Did she follow him? What does she feel here? You need to weave in her emotional experience of this scene as well as the verbal experience.] “We should have come every summer Mom. You wait [waited] until she’s dieing [dying] to bring me here. This could be my last summer with her. [You need to show more physical description of Simon...and how he is dealing with this. Does he look up toward her or is he looking down at the water as he says this?]I hate you for this.”

Jean Kelli
August 22nd, 2008, 02:14 PM
"What do you think of this, Cami?" Marios asked her.
He noted that her face was flushed, her shoulders high and tense looking, and her nostrils had flared when he'd said her name. Surely it was not the art that was the problem. Cami was curator, a professional art connoisseur. Then what precisely was the cause of her angst?
"It's a 1951 vintage photograph of the 'Queen of bondage', aka Betty Page," she replied to him matter of factly.
"I see," said Marios, nodding his head but unsatisfied at her dodging his question. "And what do you think of it, Miss Swanson?" he asked again, pinning her with his eyes.
Cami flashed an incredulous smile, throwing her head up. It was the first time he'd seen her smile, and it was sexy as hell. He got the feeling that the more buttons he pushed on Cami Swanson, the more alive and sexier she became.
Her smile waning, Marios watched as she quickly recovered her stiff demeanor. "It's...part of my grandparent's original collect--"
"Yes I'm aware of that," he said, cutting her off.
She furrowed her brow at him, her cheeks flushing even brighter. "Look, Marios, it doesn't matter what I think of it, what matters is that it belonged to my grandparent's personal collection...and for that reason it matters as much to me as every inch of this home. To me, this entire estate is invaluable."
Marios nodded, pausing on her.
Sentimental, vulnerable, headstrong, all in one. Cami Swanson was intriguing to say the least. Yet, she also had done a good job of showing all of her cards to him.
Marios lowered his head, peering into Cami's eyes as he homed in on her intentions.
"I think I understand now, Cami, that you were not one of the Swanson members in support of the bid to sale."
Finally, thought Cami, exhaling heavily. Finally they could get on with the conversation she was dire to have. The only other thing on her mind besides this very topic was the fact that her dry mouth was now a vast desert and she was hurting for a glass of water.
"Yes, you're right, " she replied, "I was not one of the Swanson family members in support of selling the Swanson."
"Mmhm," he said, nodding his head.
Cami tried to analyze the small gleam she detected in Marios's eyes as he looked upon her. He seemed too intent on her, as though she were one of the curious relics on the wall. She resisted the urge to fidget and kept her gaze steady with his own.
"And you were among the minority of opposers," he said definitively, his deep blue eyes twinkling beneath smooth dark brows.
Stating the obvious, she thought. She was starting to figure out his game alright. He truly was here to humiliate her. His mission seemed to be to make her squirm at every chance. Fine. She could take it. It wasn't herself she was concerned about, it was the future of The Swanson. And nothing else.
"Yes, obviously I was of the minority," she replied, "though...would it have made a difference either way?"
"What do you mean?" he said, cocking his head slightly.
"I mean, whether or not you got enough bids, you still would have bought-out the Swanson."
"You mean a hostile take-over?" he said wryly.
"Yes," she said, crossing her arms.
A subtle, wry smile edged Marios's lips. "We try not to make a habit of that," he said.
Cami opened her mouth to speak but Marios beat her to it. "As you should be well aware, Miss Swanson, Petrakis Enterprises engages in mergers, buy-outs on occasion, take-overs slim to none."
"Yes but, isn't merger often a nicer word for buyout Mr. Petrakis?" Cami shot back, her mouth so dry now that her throat burned like flame.
Marios smiled, nodding his head. "Sure," he conceded. "You've done your research and yes a merger always sounds nicer on paper to stockholders."
Cami opened her mouth to speak but fell short. He'd taken the wind from her sales by agreeing with her. Yet, she felt no better, nothing had changed.
"However," he began again, his smile waning, "as I said, we do not conduct takeovers at Petrakis Enterprises. We take on business' fair and square, just as we took on The Swanson. And though I get the impression that you are unsatisfied with the turn of events, as an expert in the market of art, I'm sure you're aware that if it weren't for Petrakis Enterprises, The Swanson would merely be a sinking ship. The internal corruption of your family members irrevocably damaged the reputation of The Swanson. There's no arguing that."
There's no arguing that? Sure there is, thought Cami. Until the name Petrakis entered her life, she had been convinced that with a little time and aggressive planning, she could have revived The Swanson.
Yet what would be the point of mentioning that here now. She could argue semantics with Marios Petrakis all day long and it wouldn't change a thing. She needed to keep her focus on that tiny strand of string she still held onto....
"The past is the past, and...I'd rather focus on the future of The Swanson," she said to Marios.
"Indeed," he said, his expression unreadable. "The future of The Swanson will be discussed once board talks begin." With that he turned his attention back to the vintage photos on the wall.

MeiraP
August 22nd, 2008, 03:03 PM
Laurie

Thanks. I cannot tell you how worthwhile this workshop is for me. I never really thought about POV vs. Deep POV. In addition to learning techniques through the exercises, I read your post on flawed characters. It gave me some inspiration on this not-so-sympathetic Lacey character that I have tried to develop several times unsuccessfully. Clearly it needs more work, but now I understand the concept.

Anyway, before I progress with the rewrite, I have a question:



[The energy of the scene seems to shift here. It was about Lacey and needed to be in her point of view...but it seems like here it becomes really about Ian and since Lacey doesn't know anything about Ian, it seems like you need to get into Ian's point of view here...]


Are you indicated that I should switch to Ian's POV? I've been told in the past to stop flipping from one POV to another. Does it require a section break?

MelanieR
August 23rd, 2008, 08:05 AM
I hope this is what you were looking for. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.


It had been tens years since she had been on this ferry. Her plan had been to never return to the tiny island she grew up on. But life has a funny way of changing your plans. Looking out of the water Carrie closed her eyes and breathed in the salt air and remembered the first time her mother let her take the ferry to the mainland alone. Looking to the shore she allowed the memory to flood back and consume her. She smiled a wistful smile remembering her mother standing on the dock shielding her eyes as the ferry left shore. When she returned several hours later her mother was still there. At the time Carrie had been furious, but as a mother she understood now. Hearing the whistle blow broke the spell of that long ago day and with a heavy heart she knew the time had come to tell Simon. <o></o>

Turning to see him playing his game made her smile. Everything about this child was special. From the way he held his head when he was in serious thought to the smile that was so much his fathers. His excitement about coming here had been infectious and although what she was about to tell him would change his life forever she had been excited too. Sighing deeply she knew the time had come to tell him the real reason for their visit.

“Hey bud, you ready?”
<!--[if !supportLineBreakNewLine]-->
<!--[endif]--><o></o>
“Yep, I can’t wait to see Gran and Pap. They know we’re coming right?”
<!--[if !supportLineBreakNewLine]-->
<!--[endif]--><o></o>
“Nope it’s a surprise.”
<!--[if !supportLineBreakNewLine]-->
<!--[endif]--><o></o>
“Awesome, they’re going to be surprised aren’t they?”
<!--[if !supportLineBreakNewLine]-->
<!--[endif]--><o></o>
“Yes they are. Simon before we go I have to tell you something.”
Hearing the change in his mother’s voice, he looked up and noticed how tense she was. This meant trouble he was sure of it. “What is it Mom? You look so sad.” He turned toward her as she sat down. Seeing tears in her eyes Simon reached for her hand.

“It’s Gran Simon. She’s sick.” His breakfast started to roll around and he feared he was going to be sick. “She has cancer.” Carrie watched as her son jerked as if given a blow to the stomach. Her hand stung with regret as she yanked his hand from hers. When he finally looked at her, she didn’t see a boys eyes looking back at her but those of someone much older. It killed her to know she was the one that had done that to him. She had kept him from this place for her own silly reasons and the regret she felt seemed to be consuming her.

“What, no she doesn’t. That’s a terrible thing to say.”

He pulled away from her when she reached for him. His body had grown tense and there was a fury and pain in his eyes she had never seen there before. She knew just how he felt it had been just a few days ago when she had felt the same thing. The tears she had been holding back started to stream down her face. <o></o>

When she started again, Simon shook his head and went to the rail. She knew he didn’t want to hear it but she had to finish. Walking slowly up beside him trying her best to hide her own feelings, she put her arm around him and felt his small body tense.<o></o>

“I’m sorry honey I know your heart is breaking. So is mine. But she’s getting treatment. Only time will tell if it’s going to work. Uncle David said she’s thin, but in good spirits and I think if anything is going to make her feel better, it’s spending the summer with you.”
<o></o>
“We should have come every summer Mom. Instead you waited until she’s dying to bring me here. This could be my last summer with her.” The anger in his voice surprised her. When he looked at her she felt as if she had just been stabbed in the heart. His anger was much bigger than she could have imagined. He seemed to vibrate with it.<o></o>

“You think I don’t know why you kept me from coming here. But I do, I know this is where my father lives. I’ve known all along. But you won’t keep me from this place ever again.”

“Simon you …you don’t understand.” <o></o>

“I do understand. You were being selfish. I hate you for keeping me away.” As she opened her mouth to speak she was shocked to she him put his hand up to stop her. “I don’t want to talk anymore. I just want to go and see Gran.”<o></o>

Laurie2
August 25th, 2008, 04:04 PM
Laurie

Thanks. I cannot tell you how worthwhile this workshop is for me. I never really thought about POV vs. Deep POV. In addition to learning techniques through the exercises, I read your post on flawed characters. It gave me some inspiration on this not-so-sympathetic Lacey character that I have tried to develop several times unsuccessfully. Clearly it needs more work, but now I understand the concept.

Anyway, before I progress with the rewrite, I have a question:



Are you indicated that I should switch to Ian's POV? I've been told in the past to stop flipping from one POV to another. Does it require a section break?


Hi Meira,

There are a lot of authors that are sticklers about maintaining one point of view throughout a scene or chapter. There are (I suppose, though I don't know any personally) a few editors who are sticklers about it too.

My personal take is that the author needs to choose the combination of viewpoints that tell their story in the strongest way and provide the reader the best experience.

There are places in stories where the energy of the story switches. Your piece is a perfect example of a place where it feels that the story would be stronger if viewpoint switched. I feel this often when I read books by authors who are themselves sticklers on sticking with one point of view for some pre-set period of time or when I read the work of authors who have been influenced by these authors. The feeling is one of feeling that the current viewpoint character is no longer in jeopardy, but gee...I sure would like to know what HE is thinking. I think sometimes the advice to stay in one point of view till a chapter break is not good advice. If the reader wants to know what he feels when he looks at Lacy falling in the street because she is drunk, then waiting till the next chapter is going to feel a bit artificial...because in order to cover that in the next chapter I will have to have him REMEMBERING the event, which is never quite as strong as just showing the event to begin with. Memories and flashbacks can be their own distraction so they too should not be overused.

If you are flipping from POV to POV as in head-hopping STOP IT. :) I'm not advising you to head hop. I'm advising you to do a signaled, anchored, baton pass of the POV. It is NOT the same as shallow point of view which drifts back and forth.

I do not think that you need to do a double space or **** viewpoint shift. The scene continues, just in a different point of view. I would use the signaled, anchored version that is posted about elsewhere in the forum.

I'm delighted to hear that the workshop has been helpful.

I will post a bit more about Lacey and making her more likeable -- I will do that in the thread about flawed characters. It would be helpful if you could post a copy of exercise one in that thread so that folks will have it to refer to as I am discussing some possible ways to make Lacey a bit more likeable. :)

Laurie

destinyrae
August 26th, 2008, 11:02 AM
Revised

Her reflection in the mirror blurred as her eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry over him," she said through gritted teeth. "He is not worth it. Never, ever cry over a man." The volume of her voice grew as her desperation escalated. She loathed her tears, wanted to scream at herself for such foolishness. She needed to regain control before she went back out there. The echo that carried inside the public restroom startled her, and her body reacted with a jolt. She placed both hands against the cold marble counter top and pressed against it with all her might, willing the hard stone to claim her heart and turn it hard and cold.
"He doesn't even know you exist," she whispered.
"Mommy, who are you talking to?"
Her daughter's voice penetrated the emotional fog. She straightened, blinked rapidly to dry her eyes and smiled shakily at the five-year-old. Her mommy-voice came to the surface naturally. "I was just thinking out loud, sweetheart."
"Why are you crying?" the little girl asked, fingering the end of her dress as she spoke.
She straightened her posture, tilted her chin and met the child's gaze. That someone witnessed her breakdown angered her. She despised weakness. She was strong and solid. She did not need a man in her life. Her daughter needed to learn right here and now how to be an independent woman. It wasn't an easy lesson to learn, but a necessary one. "I am not crying. I will not cry. Neither will you. Your daddy left us, baby, he's gone. Neither of us will think about him or cry about him again. That's a promise."The child's eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry. I forbid it!" she said harshly.
Didn't the child realize that all men left eventually, even daddys. She knew from firsthand experience. Her daddy left her, too. Tears wouldn't do either of them any good.
"Dry it up and lets go home," she said more softly this time. She knew it hurt. Oh, how she knew, but the pain was just a fact of life.

Laurie2
August 26th, 2008, 02:14 PM
The Original:


I hope this is what you were looking for. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.


It had been tens years since she had been on this ferry. Her plan had been to never return to the tiny island she grew up on. But life has a funny way of changing your plans. Looking out of the water Carrie closed her eyes and breathed in the salt air and remembered the first time her mother let her take the ferry to the mainland alone. Looking to the shore she allowed the memory to flood back and consume her. She smiled a wistful smile remembering her mother standing on the dock shielding her eyes as the ferry left shore. When she returned several hours later her mother was still there. At the time Carrie had been furious, but as a mother she understood now. Hearing the whistle blow broke the spell of that long ago day and with a heavy heart she knew the time had come to tell Simon. <O></O>

Turning to see him playing his game made her smile. Everything about this child was special. From the way he held his head when he was in serious thought to the smile that was so much his fathers. His excitement about coming here had been infectious and although what she was about to tell him would change his life forever she had been excited too. Sighing deeply she knew the time had come to tell him the real reason for their visit.

“Hey bud, you ready?”
<!--[if !supportLineBreakNewLine]-->
<!--[endif]--><O></O>
“Yep, I can’t wait to see Gran and Pap. They know we’re coming right?”
<!--[if !supportLineBreakNewLine]-->
<!--[endif]--><O></O>
“Nope it’s a surprise.”
<!--[if !supportLineBreakNewLine]-->
<!--[endif]--><O></O>
“Awesome, they’re going to be surprised aren’t they?”
<!--[if !supportLineBreakNewLine]-->
<!--[endif]--><O></O>
“Yes they are. Simon before we go I have to tell you something.”
Hearing the change in his mother’s voice, he looked up and noticed how tense she was. This meant trouble he was sure of it. “What is it Mom? You look so sad.” He turned toward her as she sat down. Seeing tears in her eyes Simon reached for her hand.

“It’s Gran Simon. She’s sick.” His breakfast started to roll around and he feared he was going to be sick. “She has cancer.” Carrie watched as her son jerked as if given a blow to the stomach. Her hand stung with regret as she yanked his hand from hers. When he finally looked at her, she didn’t see a boys eyes looking back at her but those of someone much older. It killed her to know she was the one that had done that to him. She had kept him from this place for her own silly reasons and the regret she felt seemed to be consuming her.

“What, no she doesn’t. That’s a terrible thing to say.”

He pulled away from her when she reached for him. His body had grown tense and there was a fury and pain in his eyes she had never seen there before. She knew just how he felt it had been just a few days ago when she had felt the same thing. The tears she had been holding back started to stream down her face. <O></O>

When she started again, Simon shook his head and went to the rail. She knew he didn’t want to hear it but she had to finish. Walking slowly up beside him trying her best to hide her own feelings, she put her arm around him and felt his small body tense.<O></O>

“I’m sorry honey I know your heart is breaking. So is mine. But she’s getting treatment. Only time will tell if it’s going to work. Uncle David said she’s thin, but in good spirits and I think if anything is going to make her feel better, it’s spending the summer with you.”
<O></O>
“We should have come every summer Mom. Instead you waited until she’s dying to bring me here. This could be my last summer with her.” The anger in his voice surprised her. When he looked at her she felt as if she had just been stabbed in the heart. His anger was much bigger than she could have imagined. He seemed to vibrate with it.<O></O>

“You think I don’t know why you kept me from coming here. But I do, I know this is where my father lives. I’ve known all along. But you won’t keep me from this place ever again.”

“Simon you …you don’t understand.” <O></O>

“I do understand. You were being selfish. I hate you for keeping me away.” As she opened her mouth to speak she was shocked to she him put his hand up to stop her. “I don’t want to talk anymore. I just want to go and see Gran.”<O></O>


The Mark Up:


I hope this is what you were looking for. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

I haven't read the whole piece yet, but from what little I did read to see whether this was a post I had responded to it looks like what I am looking for. :)


It had been tens years since she had been on this ferry. Her plan had been to never [never to] return to the tiny island she grew up on. But life has a funny way of changing your plans. [This is her experience we are talking about...not yours or mine....so...something like --But life had a way of changing plans at inoportune times, and it had sure changed hers would be smoother and less jarring.] Looking out of [at?] the water Carrie closed her eyes and breathed in the salt air and remembered [maybe letting the memories of the first time her mother had let her take the ferry by herself wash over her would be stronger...as it shows the memories in motion rather than stagnant.] the first time her mother let her take the ferry to the mainland alone. Looking to the shore she allowed the memory to flood back and consume her. She smiled a wistful smile remembering her mother standing on the dock shielding her eyes as the ferry left shore. When she returned several hours later her mother was still there. At the time Carrie had been furious, but as a mother [herself] she understood now. Hearing the whistle blow broke the spell of that long ago day and with a heavy heart she knew the time had come to tell Simon. <O></O>

Turning to see him playing his game made her smile. Everything about this child was special. From the way he held his head when he was in serious thought to the smile that was so much his fathers. His excitement about coming here had been infectious and although what she was about to tell him would change his life forever she had been excited too. Sighing deeply she knew the time had come to tell him the real reason for their visit.

“Hey bud, you ready?”
<O></O>
“Yep, I can’t wait to see Gran and Pap. They know we’re coming right?”

“Nope it’s a surprise.” [She needs to be processing the dialogue emotionally/mentally here. While he is saying he can't wait to see Gran and pap and building up the surprise she knows this is a sad occasion. You need to show that emotional reality when she listens to Simon's dialogue or when she responds with her own. You need more of her emotion. What is she thinking/feeling as she hears Simon's excitement?]

“Awesome, they’re going to be surprised aren’t they?”
<O></O>
“Yes they are. [I would like to see her draw a deep breath...feel some physical sensation...her stomach churn...a tightness in her chest...a lump in her throat...something that denotes her own feelings here.] Simon before we go I have to tell you something.”

Hearing the change in his mother’s voice [He would be more aware of the voice...how does it change...what is it about her voice that gives him a sense of foreboding or alarm? In other words, show me his perception of her voice.], he looked up and noticed how tense she was. This meant trouble he was sure of it. “What is it Mom? You look so sad.” [There is nothing wrong with this--but I think it might read stronger with a pause instead of so. I almost sense him taking a gulp...a deep breath...removing so and replaccing it with -- would create a break in the dialogue...a slowness which fits the mood.]He turned toward her as she sat down. Seeing tears in her eyes Simon reached for her hand.

“It’s Gran Simon. She’s sick.” His breakfast started to roll around and he feared he was going to be sick.

“She has cancer.” [I would move the she has cancer up after she's sick. It would work better for the flow and the change of viewpoint to have it up there. Then Simon has more reason for his breakfast to roll.] Carrie watched as her son jerked as if given a blow to the stomach. [she'd punched him in the stomach...this is her experience...she wouldn't think it like a generic blow...she would think it like she'd punched him in the stomach...blaming herself for his pain.] Her hand stung with regret as she [she yanked his hand from his? This doesn't really make sense. I see him yanking away...but don't see her yanking away.] yanked his hand from hers.

When he finally looked at her, she didn’t see a boys eyes looking back at her but those of someone much older. [Show me more of his eyes...what is it about his eyes that make him look older/harder?] It killed her to know she was the one that had done that to him. [This tells...it makes it trite and light and on the surface. What does it feel like physically, emotionally, deep inside her?] She had kept him from this place for her own silly reasons and the regret she felt seemed to be consuming her.

“What, no she doesn’t. That’s a terrible thing to say.” [This is a bit far removed and got a bit lost...so that I thought initially it might have not belonged here. You need to tie it back to the earlier dialogue.]

He pulled away from her when she reached for him. [She needs an emotional reaction to his pulling away.] His body had grown tense and there was a fury and pain in his eyes she had never seen there before. [See if you can capture more of his body language. Fury seems to the reader to be too much here. I can see shock, overwhelming sadness...despair. Fury seems not suited here...I would think fury would come a bit later.] She knew just how he felt it had been just a few days ago when she had [received the same news and] felt the same thing. The tears she had been holding back started to stream down her face. <O></O>

When she started again, [Started again to do what? If she is going to start to speak, just show her speaking. Show the roughness, haltedness of her speech.] Simon shook his head and went to the rail. She knew he didn’t want to hear it but she had to finish. Walking slowly up beside him trying her best to hide her own feelings [which feelings--and why is she hiding her feelings rather than sharing the feelings and the experience with her son?], she put her arm around him and felt his small body tense.<O></O>

“I’m sorry honey I know your heart is breaking. So is mine. But she’s getting treatment. Only time will tell if it’s going to work. Uncle David said she’s thin, but in good spirits and I think if anything is going to make her feel better, it’s spending the summer with you.”
<O></O>

“We should have come every summer Mom. Instead you waited until she’s dying to bring me here. This could be my last summer with her.” [I'm not clear here...she is close enough to feel extreme sadness that his grandmother has cancer, but is blaming his mom for keeping him from coming. It doesn't make a lot of sense. You need to clarify, either in her thoughts, or in her dialogue.] The anger in his voice surprised her. When he looked at her she felt as if she had just been stabbed in the heart. His anger was much bigger than she could have imagined. He seemed to vibrate with it. [emotional reaction. What does she feel inside? How does it feel physically?]<O></O>

“You think I don’t know why you kept me from coming here. But I do, I know this is where my father lives. I’ve known all along. But you won’t keep me from this place ever again.”

“Simon you …you don’t understand.” <O></O>

“I do understand. You were being [maybe not being...maybe just you were selfish. It is stronger. :)]selfish. I hate you for keeping me away.” [She needs a response. Did she keep him away? Did she deny him a relationship with his grandparents? She either thinks he is telling the truth...that he is right...or she thinks he isn't...here...which is it?] As she opened her mouth to speak she was shocked to she [see] him put his hand up to stop her. “I don’t want to talk anymore. I just want to go and see Gran.”<O></O>

Laurie2
August 26th, 2008, 08:24 PM
The Original:


Revised
Her reflection in the mirror blurred as her eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry over him," she said through gritted teeth. "He is not worth it. Never, ever cry over a man." The volume of her voice grew as her desperation escalated. She loathed her tears, wanted to scream at herself for such foolishness. She needed to regain control before she went back out there. The echo that carried inside the public restroom startled her, and her body reacted with a jolt. She placed both hands against the cold marble counter top and pressed against it with all her might, willing the hard stone to claim her heart and turn it hard and cold.
"He doesn't even know you exist," she whispered.
"Mommy, who are you talking to?"
Her daughter's voice penetrated the emotional fog. She straightened, blinked rapidly to dry her eyes and smiled shakily at the five-year-old. Her mommy-voice came to the surface naturally. "I was just thinking out loud, sweetheart."
"Why are you crying?" the little girl asked, fingering the end of her dress as she spoke.
She straightened her posture, tilted her chin and met the child's gaze. That someone witnessed her breakdown angered her. She despised weakness. She was strong and solid. She did not need a man in her life. Her daughter needed to learn right here and now how to be an independent woman. It wasn't an easy lesson to learn, but a necessary one. "I am not crying. I will not cry. Neither will you. Your daddy left us, baby, he's gone. Neither of us will think about him or cry about him again. That's a promise."The child's eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry. I forbid it!" she said harshly.
Didn't the child realize that all men left eventually, even daddys. She knew from firsthand experience. Her daddy left her, too. Tears wouldn't do either of them any good.
"Dry it up and lets go home," she said more softly this time. She knew it hurt. Oh, how she knew, but the pain was just a fact of life.



The Mark Up:

Her reflection in the mirror blurred as her eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry over him," she said through gritted teeth. "He is not worth it. Never, ever cry over a man." [This seems to scatter my focus...take me out of this scene and make me wonder about men in general rather than the one she is crying over. I would eliminate it or else make it important by making the words something she remembers her mother saying...perhaps as she cried over one. In other words, if it isn't important it distracts. If it is important strengthen the importance so the reader knows WHY it is important.] The volume of her voice grew as her desperation escalated. [You've just had her admonishing herself for crying...and yet she is crying louder...and there is no sense that she tried to stop...you need to carry the reader through the scene...and you create a dead end for them when you lead up to the character taking an action and then without motivation the character takes another action. The volume of her crying increasing would work if her thoughts grew bleaker or more desperate and if she struggled not to cry but the sobs got louder. You just have to carry the reader smoothly through the scene. I also think there is more to bring out here...she feels desperate...why? She is crying over THIS man, even though she doesn't want to...why? Don't get me wrong...I am asking questions and that is good. You don't want to answer them all...but you want to KNOW these things at this point and you want to drop little hints woven into the narrative.] She loathed her tears, wanted to scream at herself for such foolishness. [There is a lot of screaming and crying and so on here. I think it is perhaps stronger to say just that she loathed her tears, (and perhaps tie that to what she perceives as her own weakness...but then go on with her needing to pull herself together.] She needed to regain control before she went back out there. The echo that carried inside the public restroom startled her, and her body reacted with a jolt. [I don't care for this. The echo comes much too late to be tied to the sound of her crying. If she is going to hear an echo it needs to be immediate and her reaction needs to be immediate.] She placed both hands against the cold marble counter top and pressed against it with all her might, willing the hard stone to claim her heart and turn it hard and cold. [I can see this if she is getting ready to face off with the man she is crying over and she feels she needs to be cold and hard and strong to fight him. But you haven't given indication that this is the case. If it is the case you need to show it/hint at it a bit here. You need to show a reason/motive why she WANTS to feel cold and hard.]

"He doesn't even know you exist," she whispered.

"Mommy, who are you talking to?"

Her daughter's voice penetrated the emotional fog. She straightened, blinked rapidly to dry her eyes and smiled shakily at the five-year-old. Her mommy-voice came to the surface naturally. [you need to show that this is in spite of the emotional storm inside her...just a half sentence here would strengthen that.] "I was just thinking out loud, sweetheart."

"Why are you crying?" the little girl asked [she wouldn't think of her as the little girl. She would think of her by her name.], [the point of view gets shallow here...it starts with her thinking about "the little girl" -- not Robin or Katie or whatever her name is. The fingering of the dress is a good detail, but that the mother is noticing the fingering of the dress rather than other things (facial expressions) about her daughter makes her seem distant from her. It makes this feel told rather than shown...it makes me feel like I am being told rather than shown.] fingering the end of her dress as she spoke.
She straightened her posture, tilted her chin and met the child's gaze. [This is all very much told...and it is very much choreography...placement of people...it doesn't have an emotional tenor to it. You need your viewpoint character to EXPERIENCE this scene with her daughter. What does she FEEL...not just the name of an emotion...but what does that emotion feel like in her body, in her soul?] That someone witnessed her breakdown angered her. She despised weakness. She was strong and solid. She did not need a man in her life. [Again, this is told...show me anger rising in her, filling her chest, show what someone witnessing her weakness FEELS like inside her. She is either striking out in the next bit because she is angry, or she is striking out because she thinks she is doing the right thing, teaching her daughter an important lesson. If she is doing this, thinking she is teaching an important lesson it seems like it would be a painful one for her to teach...and it seems like she would be aware of and responsive to the nuances of emotion on her daughter's face.] Her daughter needed to learn right here and now how to be an independent woman. It wasn't an easy lesson to learn, but a necessary one. "I am not crying. I will not cry. Neither will you. Your daddy left us, baby, he's gone. Neither of us will think about him or cry about him again. That's a promise."The child's eyes filled with tears. [I would like more image of the child here. This mother is standing here saying these things to the child...you need to show the eyes filling with tears (through the event and the mother's reaction to the tears. You also have the mother feeling very distant from the child. She keeps thinking of her as "the child" which is very distancing. It makes your character not very likeable.] "Don't you cry. I forbid it!" she said harshly.

Didn't the child realize that all men left eventually, even daddys. [Asking this as a question doesn't work. The child doesn't know...obviously. I would focus more on the viewpoint character's feelings...a lot of what she is reacting to here is her own father's abandoment. I would like to see more empathy towrd the child. She needs to think of the child by her name. To make this character likeable, which I assume is your goal, you are going to have to get into the nitty gritty of her. You are going to tie the abandonment of her father in with the abandoment of her daughter's father...and maybe part of what she is crying about is everything her daughter will miss out on by not having a father in the picture. You need to show her feelings...and motivation for the feelings very early on. By the time it gets to the end of the piece most readers will have decided they don't like this character because she's mean to the child. You need to show her motivation...show her own pain...then the reader will be more understanding and more empathetic.] She knew from firsthand experience. Her daddy left her, too. Tears wouldn't do either of them any good.
"Dry it up and lets go home," she said more softly this time. She knew it hurt. Oh, how she knew, but the pain was just a fact of life. [This is very much on the surface...it doesn't show the hurt or the pain...it pays lip service to it. You may not need to go deeper here if you go deeper in earlier portions of the piece...but you may want to go deeper, or you may find you don't need this at all once you have plumbed the depths of her emotions.]

Her reflection in the mirror blurred as her eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry over him," she said through gritted teeth. "He is not worth it. Never, ever cry over a man." The volume of her voice grew as her desperation escalated. She loathed her tears, wanted to scream at herself for such foolishness. She needed to regain control before she went back out there. The echo that carried inside the public restroom startled her, and her body reacted with a jolt. She placed both hands against the cold marble counter top and pressed against it with all her might, willing the hard stone to claim her heart and turn it hard and cold.
"He doesn't even know you exist," she whispered.
"Mommy, who are you talking to?"
Her daughter's voice penetrated the emotional fog. She straightened, blinked rapidly to dry her eyes and smiled shakily at the five-year-old. Her mommy-voice came to the surface naturally. "I was just thinking out loud, sweetheart."
"Why are you crying?" the little girl asked, fingering the end of her dress as she spoke.
She straightened her posture, tilted her chin and met the child's gaze. That someone witnessed her breakdown angered her. She despised weakness. She was strong and solid. She did not need a man in her life. Her daughter needed to learn right here and now how to be an independent woman. It wasn't an easy lesson to learn, but a necessary one. "I am not crying. I will not cry. Neither will you. Your daddy left us, baby, he's gone. Neither of us will think about him or cry about him again. That's a promise."The child's eyes filled with tears.
"Don't you cry. I forbid it!" she said harshly.
Didn't the child realize that all men left eventually, even daddys. She knew from firsthand experience. Her daddy left her, too. Tears wouldn't do either of them any good.
"Dry it up and lets go home," she said more softly this time. She knew it hurt. Oh, how she knew, but the pain was just a fact of life.

Laurie2
August 26th, 2008, 08:53 PM
"What do you think of this, Cami?" Marios asked her.
He noted that her face was flushed, her shoulders high and tense looking, and her nostrils had flared when he'd said her name. Surely it was not the art that was the problem. Cami was curator, a professional art connoisseur. Then what precisely was the cause of her angst?
"It's a 1951 vintage photograph of the 'Queen of bondage', aka Betty Page," she replied to him matter of factly.
"I see," said Marios, nodding his head but unsatisfied at her dodging his question. "And what do you think of it, Miss Swanson?" he asked again, pinning her with his eyes.
Cami flashed an incredulous smile, throwing her head up. It was the first time he'd seen her smile, and it was sexy as hell. He got the feeling that the more buttons he pushed on Cami Swanson, the more alive and sexier she became.
Her smile waning, Marios watched as she quickly recovered her stiff demeanor. "It's...part of my grandparent's original collect--"
"Yes I'm aware of that," he said, cutting her off.
She furrowed her brow at him, her cheeks flushing even brighter. "Look, Marios, it doesn't matter what I think of it, what matters is that it belonged to my grandparent's personal collection...and for that reason it matters as much to me as every inch of this home. To me, this entire estate is invaluable."
Marios nodded, pausing on her.
Sentimental, vulnerable, headstrong, all in one. Cami Swanson was intriguing to say the least. Yet, she also had done a good job of showing all of her cards to him.
Marios lowered his head, peering into Cami's eyes as he homed in on her intentions.
"I think I understand now, Cami, that you were not one of the Swanson members in support of the bid to sale."
Finally, thought Cami, exhaling heavily. Finally they could get on with the conversation she was dire to have. The only other thing on her mind besides this very topic was the fact that her dry mouth was now a vast desert and she was hurting for a glass of water.
"Yes, you're right, " she replied, "I was not one of the Swanson family members in support of selling the Swanson."
"Mmhm," he said, nodding his head.
Cami tried to analyze the small gleam she detected in Marios's eyes as he looked upon her. He seemed too intent on her, as though she were one of the curious relics on the wall. She resisted the urge to fidget and kept her gaze steady with his own.
"And you were among the minority of opposers," he said definitively, his deep blue eyes twinkling beneath smooth dark brows.
Stating the obvious, she thought. She was starting to figure out his game alright. He truly was here to humiliate her. His mission seemed to be to make her squirm at every chance. Fine. She could take it. It wasn't herself she was concerned about, it was the future of The Swanson. And nothing else.
"Yes, obviously I was of the minority," she replied, "though...would it have made a difference either way?"
"What do you mean?" he said, cocking his head slightly.
"I mean, whether or not you got enough bids, you still would have bought-out the Swanson."
"You mean a hostile take-over?" he said wryly.
"Yes," she said, crossing her arms.
A subtle, wry smile edged Marios's lips. "We try not to make a habit of that," he said.
Cami opened her mouth to speak but Marios beat her to it. "As you should be well aware, Miss Swanson, Petrakis Enterprises engages in mergers, buy-outs on occasion, take-overs slim to none."
"Yes but, isn't merger often a nicer word for buyout Mr. Petrakis?" Cami shot back, her mouth so dry now that her throat burned like flame.
Marios smiled, nodding his head. "Sure," he conceded. "You've done your research and yes a merger always sounds nicer on paper to stockholders."
Cami opened her mouth to speak but fell short. He'd taken the wind from her sales by agreeing with her. Yet, she felt no better, nothing had changed.
"However," he began again, his smile waning, "as I said, we do not conduct takeovers at Petrakis Enterprises. We take on business' fair and square, just as we took on The Swanson. And though I get the impression that you are unsatisfied with the turn of events, as an expert in the market of art, I'm sure you're aware that if it weren't for Petrakis Enterprises, The Swanson would merely be a sinking ship. The internal corruption of your family members irrevocably damaged the reputation of The Swanson. There's no arguing that."
There's no arguing that? Sure there is, thought Cami. Until the name Petrakis entered her life, she had been convinced that with a little time and aggressive planning, she could have revived The Swanson.
Yet what would be the point of mentioning that here now. She could argue semantics with Marios Petrakis all day long and it wouldn't change a thing. She needed to keep her focus on that tiny strand of string she still held onto....
"The past is the past, and...I'd rather focus on the future of The Swanson," she said to Marios.
"Indeed," he said, his expression unreadable. "The future of The Swanson will be discussed once board talks begin." With that he turned his attention back to the vintage photos on the wall.


The Mark Up:

"What do you think of this, Cami?" Marios asked her.
He noted that her face was flushed, her shoulders high and tense looking [you don't need looking...that they look that way is implied since they are things that he would see rather than taste or hear.], and her nostrils had flared when he'd said her name. Surely it was not the art that was the problem. Cami was curator, a professional art connoisseur. Then what precisely was the cause of her angst? [The question here is a bit jarring. He couldn't help but wonder what was causing her angst might convey his experience more smoothly.]
"It's a 1951 vintage photograph of the 'Queen of bondage', aka Betty Page," she replied to him matter of factly.

"I see," said Marios, nodding his head but unsatisfied at her dodging his question. "And what do you think of it, Miss Swanson?" he asked again, pinning her with his eyes.

Cami flashed an incredulous smile, throwing her head up. It was the first time he'd seen her smile, and it was sexy as hell. He got the feeling that the more buttons he pushed on Cami Swanson, the more alive and sexier she became. [would become.]

Her smile waning, Marios watched as she quickly recovered her stiff demeanor. "It's...part of my grandparent's original collect--" [This would be stronger, Marios watched her smile wane as she quickly recovered her stiff demeanor.]
"Yes I'm aware of that," he said, cutting her off.

She furrowed her brow at him [she's not furrowing her brow AT him. Her brow furrowed.], her cheeks flushing even brighter. "Look, Marios, it doesn't matter what I think of it, what matters is that it belonged to my grandparent's personal collection...and for that reason it matters as much to me as every inch of this home. To me, this entire estate is invaluable."

Marios nodded, pausing on her. [pausing on her...doesn't make sense]
Sentimental, vulnerable, headstrong, all in one. Cami Swanson was intriguing to say the least. Yet, she also had done a good job of showing all of her cards to him. [This makes it sound like she purposely showed her cards...did she...does he know she did...or does he wonder if it was intentional or if she is just guileless?]

Marios lowered his head, peering into Cami's eyes as he homed in on her intentions. [homed in on her intentions doesn't fit very well here. Maybe her intentions became clearer or as the pieces in the puzzle that was Cami Swanson came together giving him a glimpse of her intentions.]
"I think I understand now, Cami, that you were not one of the Swanson members in support of the bid to sale."

Finally, thought Cami, exhaling heavily. [Good hand off of the viewpoint baton here.] Finally they could get on with the conversation she was dire [dire is jarring here. Pick a word which is normally used in this context. Desperate to have...had been wanting to have.] to have. The only other thing on her mind besides this very topic was the fact that her dry mouth was now a vast desert and she was hurting for a glass of water. [This seems to weaken it. I would leave it with her mouth a vast desert.]

"Yes, you're right, " she replied, "I was not one of the Swanson family members in support of selling the Swanson."

"Mmhm," he said, nodding his head.

Cami tried to analyze the small gleam she detected in Marios's eyes as he looked upon her. He seemed too intent on her, as though she were one of the curious relics on the wall. She resisted the urge to fidget and kept her gaze steady with his own. [gaze fixed steadily on his, perhaps.]

"And you were among the minority of opposers," he said definitively, his deep blue eyes twinkling beneath smooth dark brows.

Stating the obvious, she thought. She was starting to figure out his game alright. He truly was here to humiliate her. His mission seemed to be to make her squirm at every chance. Fine. She could take it. It wasn't herself she was concerned about, it was the future of The Swanson. And nothing else.

"Yes, obviously I was of the minority," she replied, "though...would it have made a difference either way?"

"What do you mean?" he said, cocking his head slightly.

"I mean, whether or not you got enough bids, you still would have bought-out the Swanson."

"You mean a hostile take-over?" he said wryly.

"Yes," she said, crossing her arms.

A subtle, wry [second use of wry in just a couple of sentences...see if you can find another word for one of the wry - wrylys] smile edged Marios's lips. "We try not to make a habit of that," he said.

Cami opened her mouth to speak but Marios beat her to it. "As you should be well aware, Miss Swanson, Petrakis Enterprises engages in mergers, buy-outs on occasion, take-overs slim to none."

"Yes but, isn't merger often a nicer word for buyout Mr. Petrakis?" Cami shot back, her mouth so dry now that her throat burned like flame.

Marios smiled, nodding his head. "Sure," he conceded. "You've done your research and yes a merger always sounds nicer on paper to stockholders."

Cami opened her mouth to speak but fell short. He'd taken the wind from her sales by agreeing with her. Yet, she felt no better, nothing had changed.

"However," he began again, his smile waning, "as I said, we do not conduct takeovers at Petrakis Enterprises. We take on business' fair and square, just as we took on The Swanson. And though I get the impression that you are unsatisfied with the turn of events, as an expert in the market of art, I'm sure you're aware that if it weren't for Petrakis Enterprises, The Swanson would merely be a sinking ship. The internal corruption of your family members irrevocably damaged the reputation of The Swanson. There's no arguing that."

There's no arguing that? Sure there is, thought Cami. Until the name Petrakis entered her life, she had been convinced that with a little time and aggressive planning, she could have revived The Swanson.
Yet what would be the point of mentioning that here [delete here] now. She could argue semantics with Marios Petrakis all day long and it wouldn't change a thing. She needed to keep her focus on that tiny strand of string she still held onto....

"The past is the past, and...I'd rather focus on the future of The Swanson," she said to Marios. [would delete this. It is redundant. Who else would she be saying it to?]

"Indeed," he said, his expression unreadable. "The future of The Swanson will be discussed once board talks begin." With that he turned his attention back to the vintage photos on the wall.

destinyrae
August 28th, 2008, 02:17 PM
In college, my papers were marked with red ink. Everything looks green and purple online... Ha-ha. Thanks so much for all of your comments, Laurie. You definitely challenge me and I love that.

I have a confession. I pulled the pieces I submitted for exercise one and two out of thin air. I didn't think the characters through all that much. I'm such a daydreamer that it was easy for me to come up with a scene from nowhere. The result is I don't have all the answers for motivation. My family and I are headed out in the morning for a camping trip, so I may not get the opportunity to do another revision though I wanted to say I value all the comments you offered.

Again, I just wanted to let you know that I've read all through this seminar and there is a lot of great information. I so appreciate your time. You are so knowledgeable on this subject. I hope you have a great Labor Day Weekend.

Tambra
August 29th, 2008, 10:27 AM
Hi Ms. Laurie,

I'd love to hear your suggestions on mine. Thanks so much for giving this workshop.

Setup:
Place: Planet Keltica, 3130: The Year of Strife
Jiana is a snow leopard shifter. Hero Zev, is a white tiger shifter.
(This story is contracted by Red Rose Publishing)

Thanks for the help very much.
Tambra

Now was the worst possible time for him to come near. Her mating hormones surged and tingled to attention at his luscious rosemary scent, 6 foot two, a hard muscled body and a face that could grace a vid-theater screen.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p>
Goddess, she had to get rid of him before he knew without a doubt it was time for her to mate. “What are you doing here, Zev?” <o:p></o:p>
Her hungry gaze strayed to his broad shoulders and well-defined chest his uniform emphasized. Oh to run her hands along the hard planes of his body. To lick, nibble and taste this man. Too many nights she dreamed of Zev M’Aulay. <o:p></o:p>
At his nearness, her stomach fluttered in anticipation. No. I must remain in control. Oh Goddess, he needs to leave. Now!<o:p></o:p>
“This is life threatening, Jiana.” He stepped closer wrapping his fingers around her arm. “Open the door.”<o:p></o:p>
Desire exploded to the surface from his touch. She swallowed a groan. His rich voice spoke flowed over her like dark, decadent chocolate. <o:p></o:p>
Jerking from his grasp, she avoided looking at him. “Fine. We’ll go inside.”<o:p></o:p>
Zev’s presence signified trouble as large as the galaxy. Her life had finally settled into a semi-peaceful, yet wary, routine after her last confrontation with the GCSO—the Grand Convocation of Shifters and Others, the ruling body for the planet. The King wanted total power and the GSCO was the only thing standing in his way and she’d gotten stuck in the middle. <o:p></o:p>
Despite her tight control, her body continued to rejoice being in his presence. <o:p></o:p>
His voice was urgent and low. “Hurry.” <o:p></o:p>
An unnatural ripple of air, exactly like she’d felt earlier in the forest, brushed against her skin. Her senses recoiled. <o:p></o:p>
The touch—pure evil. <o:p></o:p>
This encounter left a frozen lump in her stomach and terror so strong her body shivered in revulsion. “What is that…presence?” It was difficult to speak through the tightness in her throat.<o:p></o:p>
“I’ll tell you what I know, but inside the house. Now, move!” His large hand nudged her toward the heavy oaken door.<o:p></o:p>
Whispered words in an ancient language tumbled from her lips to release the warding spell protecting the house. She opened the door and grabbed Zev’s hand, jerking him into the cottage. <o:p></o:p>
Once inside, her hands and breathless words wove another incantation of protection this time adding her property and residence to the spell. <o:p></o:p>
“Follow me.” Her nostrils flared at the comforting smell of freshly ground coffea as she led him to the kitchen. Thank Cernunnos, the Celtic god of animals; she’d started a pot of the brew. She damn sure needed a jolt of caffeine to soothe her jumbled mass of nerves. <o:p></o:p>

www.tambrakendall.com

Laurie2
August 31st, 2008, 02:57 PM
Hi Destiny,

I don't like using red ink. :) Actually, I like red ink fine...but it has bad connotations for a lot of people who remember the college (or elementary, junior high, high school) papers with the red ink. For that reason I use other colors when I edit. :) I usually use yellow highlighter in Word documents...but we don't have a yellow highlighter here, so I used Black Velvet Seductions teal and purple because I also like purple. :)

What you provided for the exercises was fine for undeveloped work. The difference between an undeveloped idea and a novel is really the level to which you've figured out the motivations.

I hope you had/are having an enjoyable time camping.

Laurie


In college, my papers were marked with red ink. Everything looks green and purple online... Ha-ha. Thanks so much for all of your comments, Laurie. You definitely challenge me and I love that.

I have a confession. I pulled the pieces I submitted for exercise one and two out of thin air. I didn't think the characters through all that much. I'm such a daydreamer that it was easy for me to come up with a scene from nowhere. The result is I don't have all the answers for motivation. My family and I are headed out in the morning for a camping trip, so I may not get the opportunity to do another revision though I wanted to say I value all the comments you offered.

Again, I just wanted to let you know that I've read all through this seminar and there is a lot of great information. I so appreciate your time. You are so knowledgeable on this subject. I hope you have a great Labor Day Weekend.

Laurie2
August 31st, 2008, 03:23 PM
Hi Tambra,

I'm hesitant to give feedback on a piece that is contracted by another publishing company because what I seek for Black Velvet Seductions and what another company might seek for their lines is very different.

Obviously if the piece is contracted by Red Rose you have done what they are looking for.

I would advise against making any revisions to your manuscript based on my responses without talking to your editor at Red Rose.

That said, I will go ahead and give you my feedback.

Laurie


Hi Ms. Laurie,

I'd love to hear your suggestions on mine. Thanks so much for giving this workshop.

Setup:
Place: Planet Keltica, 3130: The Year of Strife
Jiana is a snow leopard shifter. Hero Zev, is a white tiger shifter.
(This story is contracted by Red Rose Publishing)

Thanks for the help very much.
Tambra

Now was the worst possible time for him to come near. Her mating hormones surged and tingled to attention at his [This would be stronger if you showed interaction with his scent. Something like--as his rosemary scent wafted over her would be stronger than "at his"] luscious rosemary scent, 6 foot two, a hard muscled body and a face that could grace a vid-theater screen.<O:p></O:p>
Goddess, she had to get rid of him before he knew without a doubt it was time for her to mate. “What are you doing here, Zev?” <O:p></O:p>
Her hungry gaze strayed to his broad shoulders and well-defined chest his uniform emphasized. [Show rather than tell...if you show the way the uniform clings to his chest following the planes of muscle that is stronger than telling that he has a well defined chest. So, for example...her hungry gaze strayed to his broad shoulders and was drawn as if by a magnet to the hard planes of muscle that rippled beneath the clingy fabric of his uniform.] Oh to run her hands along the hard planes of his body. To lick, nibble and taste this man. Too many nights she dreamed of Zev M’Aulay. <O:p></O:p>
At his nearness, her stomach fluttered in anticipation. No. I must remain in control. Oh Goddess, he needs to leave. Now!<O:p></O:p>
“This is life threatening, Jiana.” He stepped closer wrapping his fingers around her arm. “Open the door.”<O:p></O:p>
Desire exploded to the surface from his touch. She swallowed a groan. His rich voice spoke [you don't need spoke here.] flowed over her like dark, decadent chocolate. <O:p></O:p>
Jerking from his grasp, she avoided looking at him. “Fine. We’ll go inside.”<O:p></O:p>
[This is an abrupt shift. If this is related to going inside with him you need to tie it to that...right away. Otherwise it is is an abrupt shift that jars the reader.] Zev’s presence signified trouble as large as the galaxy. Her life had finally settled into a semi-peaceful, yet wary, routine after her last confrontation with the GCSO—the Grand Convocation of Shifters and Others, the ruling body for the planet. The King wanted total power and the GSCO was the only thing standing in his way and she’d gotten stuck in the middle. <O:p></O:p> [This seems like the more important piece of information. If I were editing it for publication I would want his presence signifying trouble as the opening shot over the bow. It being mating time would be secondary. So I would want to show her situational problem with the governing body, then make it WORSE by the fact that it is mating time and she is trying to maintain control over her body. I would suggest weaving in her lust and the mating time in with the overwhelming problem, that she is in trouble with the governing body.]
Despite her tight control, her body continued to rejoice being in his presence. <O:p></O:p>
His voice was urgent and low. “Hurry.” <O:p></O:p>
An unnatural ripple of air, exactly like she’d felt earlier in the forest, brushed against her skin. Her senses recoiled. <O:p></O:p>
The touch—pure evil. <O:p></O:p> [If the touch is pure evil her senses need more reaction than just recoiling (which is telling rather than showing.) What would it feel like to be touched by pure evil? Try to capture elements of this feeling...show her reaction rather than telling. Remember that you are trying to create an experience for the reader.]
This encounter left [This encounter left isn't a smooth transition...it would be smoother to show the whole experience as it happens...she feels the ripple of air with the bad energy. What is the first thing she feels? The first thing she senses? How does she react to that? What does she feel emotionally? A frozen terror, a desire to flee an inability to speak are all good things...they just need to be streamlined in the order that they would occur...on stage as if they are occurring. When you have the characters all on stage...all acting...all responding to the scene you want the scene to unfold. You don't want to stop the scene to shout scene directions...which is a bit what you're doing with "this encounter left..."] a frozen lump in her stomach and terror so strong her body shivered in revulsion. “What is that…presence?” It was difficult to speak through the tightness in her throat.<O:p></O:p>
“I’ll tell you what I know, but inside the house. Now, move!” His large hand nudged her toward the heavy oaken door.<O:p></O:p>
Whispered words in an ancient language tumbled from her lips to release the warding spell protecting the house. She opened the door and grabbed Zev’s hand, jerking him into the cottage. <O:p></O:p>
Once inside, her hands and breathless words wove another incantation of protection this time adding her property and residence to the spell. <O:p></O:p>
“Follow me.” Her nostrils flared at the comforting smell of freshly ground coffea as she led him to the kitchen. [The smell of coffee seems a bit jarring to me here. It may not be jarring in the whole piece...but here the situation seems too adrenaline driven to refocus on the coffee.] Thank Cernunnos, the Celtic god of animals; she’d started a pot of the brew. She damn sure needed a jolt of caffeine to soothe her jumbled mass of nerves. <O:p></O:p>

www.tambrakendall.com (http://www.tambrakendall.com)

Elm Smith
August 31st, 2008, 09:22 PM
Laurie,

Sorry I'm late with this. It's excerise 1, 2 and 3 together. I didn't get to post either 2 or 3 earlier as my computer caught a virius and had to be totally redone - I lost everything that wasn't backed up. Please let me know what you think. Thanks.

Elm

Isadora sat on one of the sofas and sank into its thick cushion. She looked around the old hotel’s lobby. Heavy maroon drapes framed the windows while ivory sheers protected those within from the harsh desert sun. Still there was enough light to read. Isadora made herself comfortable at one end of the sofa and opened the latest Stephanie Plum novel. As she read she took great pleasure in replacing the villain’s name with that of her ex-boyfriend; knowing he would receive what he deserved by the end of the book. Although the swoosh of the revolving door barely registered, Isadora’s attention was drawn to it. A man stood there holding a pair of dark sunglasses. Her gaze followed his hand as it dropped to his side. His slacks clung to his behind so tightly that Isadora doubted he carried a wallet. Smiling, she moved her gaze up, past his open polo shirt to his face where her gaze met his. He smiled. She felt her face warm and wanted to look away, but like a moth to a flame, Isadora felt drawn to him. When he started walking in her direction, her stomach fluttered and she dropped her gaze to the book and fumbled with it trying to find her place. ‘Surely he was going to the front desk,’ she thought. Having found her place in the book, Isadora was reading when she saw him pass in front of her. She held her breath and kept her head down hoping he would keep walking. Isadora felt the sofa slide backward just a little on the marble floor as he sat down beside her. Her pulse quickened. She looked up into his brown eyes and knew she was in trouble.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p>
“Hello, I’m Jack Durant.” He smiled and held out his hand.<o:p></o:p>
“It’s nice to meet you. I’m Isadora Lake,” she said smiling. She took his hand thinking he wanted to shake hands; instead, he bent down, turned her hand over and kissed the back of it. As his lips brushed against her skin, it made her tingle.<o:p></o:p>
He sat up and said, “I noticed you were staring at me.” Isadora again felt her face warm. <o:p></o:p>
“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to stare.”<o:p></o:p>
“You shouldn’t be embarrassed; I was staring too.” ‘Had he been staring earlier like he is now?’ she wondered.<o:p></o:p>
“Why would you stare at me?”<o:p></o:p>
“You’re so beautiful, I was afraid if I looked away you’d be gone.” Isadora looked deep into his eyes trying to decide if he were telling the truth or if this was a pickup line.<o:p></o:p>
Jack noticed she was no longer smiling, but look confused. She was beautiful, how could she not know it. Then he had a terrible thought, ‘What if she was here with a boyfriend or even worse a husband.’ “Were you waiting for someone? Is that why you looked up when I entered?”<o:p></o:p>
“No, I was on a tour to LA. The bus broke down and stranded us here.” He glanced down at her hands, she was not wearing any rings and she said that she, not we, was on a tour.<o:p></o:p>
“Would you like a drink?” he asked.<o:p></o:p>
“Yes, I would. Thank you.”<o:p></o:p>

Tambra
September 1st, 2008, 10:34 AM
Hi Tambra,

I'm hesitant to give feedback on a piece that is contracted by another publishing company because what I seek for Black Velvet Seductions and what another company might seek for their lines is very different.

Obviously if the piece is contracted by Red Rose you have done what they are looking for.

I would advise against making any revisions to your manuscript based on my responses without talking to your editor at Red Rose.

That said, I will go ahead and give you my feedback.

Laurie

Hi Laurie,
Your feedback is exactly what I need. The story hasn't been send to the editors yet.
I'm struggling a bit with deep POV and I'm going to be going over the rest of your lessons.

You've been a terrific help! I appreciate your time.
I can't wait to make the corrections.

Best,
Tambra