If you're a dreamer, a wisher, a liar
A hoper, a prayer, a magic-bean buyer
If you're a pretender come sit by my fire
For we have some flax-golden tales to spin
Come in...come in...
~Shel Silverstein

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Anyone looking for fresh eyes on your first chapter?

Okay. I swore  I wasn't going to blog today, so I could spend the whole day working on rewrites. I changed my mind. haha.  But, before I go into what this blog is about, if you want to read my entrance into the Ghostly Flash Fiction Blog Hop (please read and vote!!) click HERE.

If you want to enter my drawing for a critique on your first twenty-five pages, click HERE. I'll post the winner at noon on Friday.

Okay. Now that's out of the way, here is my situation. I (very responsibly I might add) spent most of the day writing. I ended up combining the first and third chapter of my book to make a new beginning. However, having done that, I have NO idea if it works. I was doing this on the awesome advice of my critique partner, so you'd think I could just ask her opinion. However, she's been reading my book. She knows my characters, their problems and the world I've created. Therefore, I'm not sure she'll be able to objectively say whether the beginning gives enough information to entice the reader--which is clearly what I'm going for. Or if it would just confuse the hell out of someone and make them put the book down. (NOT what I'm going for. haha)

So, I need a fresh set of eyes and I thought of my friends out in the blogging world. To me, beginning a book is harder than anything else. Drawing someone into your world and making them want to keep reading about it is a huge challenge. Therefore, I'm guessing I can't be the only one having this problem. If anyone else out there wants to trade first chapters with me, that would be great! (Mine is thirteen pages, so if yours is way shorter than that, feel free to send me two chapters)

I'd prefer someone who's done some critiquing but, mostly, all I really need is a fresh set of eyes. I need to know if my beginning makes sense or if it throws you into the story too abruptly. I'd like someone who could get this back to me fairly quickly (within two days or so)  and I'll do the same for you.

 I'm not looking for line edits, and I don't really have time to do that for someone else, cause I already have a few people I'm working with. I just need an overall opinion on whether the first chapter makes you want to read more or just confuses you. Also, if  it does confuse you, please don't just say, "CONFUSING!" Tell me what parts don't work. If you have a suggestion on fixing whatever is confusing, that would be great too.

So, that's it. Any takers? Also, while you are here--How do you guys handle this problem? Any easy tricks for instantly drawing someone into your story? TELL ME!!

18 comments:

  1. I'll have a gander. Thirteen pages sounds like it's roughly in the area of my fantasy's first chapter (eleven pages, double-spaced right?), so it shouldn't take me too long.

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    1. Great. My email is tamaradwalsh then the "at" sign and then the dot and the com. haha. Trying to fool the spammers. Send it over and I'll probably have it back to you by later than tomorrow--possibly even later on tonight. Once you send it, I'll have your email to send mine back. Any specific thing you are looking for, just let me know in the email. Thanks!

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    2. tamaradwalsh[at].com? I gotta be reading that wrong. Or is it a gmail account?

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    3. My email's aldreaalien[at]yahoo[dot]co[dot]nz if you wanna flick the email off to me first. I don't want to guess the wrong domain and have people be wondering what the foog.

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    4. hehe...oops. I somehow erased the gmail part of that post. I'm a jackass. I got yours now though, so it's all good. I'll send it over soon. :)

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    5. Okay. I mailed that off, let me know when you get it. thanks!

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  2. I just finished a rewrite on my first chapter as well and would be happy to trade. I should have plenty of time in the next few days but I'm heading off for vacation next week. Don't know if that schedule works for you.

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    1. I can switch right now and have it back to you by tomorrow if that's cool? What is your book about? I tried to look if you have a blog or anything but you don't seem to. I write YA light sci-fi. If you want to send your chapter over, I put my email in my reply to Aldrea. Once I get yours, I'll have your email to send mine back. Just let me know if you're looking for anything specific. :) Thanks!

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    2. I have mine ready to go but your attempt to fool the spammers has fooled me - I can't figure out what domain your email is at. I have faith in my spam filter so my email is: blair@blairbburke.com (that's my website, by the way). My current WIP is YA (sort of scifi) so this should work well. I should be able to get to it tomorrow.

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    3. Hey, I mailed that over. Just wanted to make sure you got it. Let me know

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  3. I'm in the middle of edits right now! But sounds like you have some offers already.

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  4. Glad you found some takers. I'm massively swamped with reviews. Hope you get some good advice!

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  5. I noticed your comment on Natasha's Green Eyes and Freckles blog, and I followed you over here. I'm currently querying, too. It's a roller-coaster, huh? :P I wish you the very best of luck in all that you do! :-D

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    1. Thanks so much, Lexa! Yeah, it sure is. I got my first rejection yesterday (which I got way too bummed about haha) and then, today, found out I made it into the next round of the GUTGAA agent pitch. I'm psyched to know my query was good enough to get that far! :) I wish you luck too. Nice to meet you!

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  6. Thanks for the return follow and if you need a "reserve" for the first chapter, shoot me a comment at any of my posts :)

    GOOD LUCK :)

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    1. Thanks Mark!! Not sure if you saw the panicked post up top, but I'd love your help if you want to take a look! :)

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I love to hear from everyone! Thanks for the comment. :)