Saturday, October 29, 2011

CT First Page #11

Title: Erth Too (Sequel to Erth Won)
Genre: MG Fantasy

Morgan watched the heart-shape Heartland from high in the air over a large continent resembling North America, except this Heartland wasn’t on Earth. It was on the first earth, an ancient, powerful, and very intelligent world. He waited to hear Erth One’s voice in his mind while he remembered how he and his best friend Loa, a huge Polynesian, had traveled across the universe to do what the planet couldn’t do for itself—act as its arms and legs to destroy the evil poisoning its Heart Well.

Though not even a whisper came, he couldn’t help smiling. The feeling of flying lightened his heart and his body. Turning, he watched a few of his mouse-brown curls fall in lazy spirals through the violet tinged air.

It seemed Erth One’s mind, much larger than its brain crystals could account for, had healed enough to awaken and synchronize with other minds besides Morgan’s. Otherwise he wouldn’t be able to look down as if from the eyes of a bird, right? Of course this meant he was asleep, because he’d lost the crystal that would let him communicate while awake.

Morgan still felt amazed that two 14-year-old Boy Scouts had served as Erth SCOUTs, Super Conductors of Unified Terraforming, and succeeded against terrible odds in purifying Erth One’s lifeblood. Or had they? Before Morgan could ask Erth One if it felt better, he sank lower until the Heartland’s heartbreak dominated the scene. A putrid smell from the ugly north-south gash invaded his nostrils.


  1. I'm curious but also quite confused, so I don't know how that will go for middle grade. Sounds like a really cool concept which, if simplified, would make people think, 'wow, unique'and read on.

  2. I agree with Katherineamabel. I was a little confused. I know there is so much you want to pack into the first page, but maybe you could slow down a little with the facts. Help us visualize what you are trying to say. If this is a sequel, perhaps we should already know the setting, history of Erth One, etc. I love your last line "...ugly north-south gash..." That provides a great visual. Good luck!

  3. I think I would more greatly appreciate this had I read the first one. It sounds like something I would've enjoyed as a child, though. I'm unsure as to how to critique this because of that.

  4. This is reading like a "let me catch you up from the events of book one" page or a prologue, more than an opening page of a book. The problem is that almost all of this is back story and not what's happening in the present moment. Where you finally get to at the end of this 250 is where I start reading. You need to put the reader in the present dilemma and then very slowly, and in as small of chunks as possible, give us the exposition of your story. Your premise is very unique and different, and is therefore too much to absorb as quickly as you've written it. I can already tell you have all the fantastic world building you need for an awesome story, but take care not to "info dump" on the reader, especially if the readers are MG. I'd study up on showing vs. telling too. Good luck! Hope this helps!!

  5. -"heart-shape" as an adjective should read "heart-shaped"
    -"heart-shaped Heartland" is a little redundant. Could you use some other image/descriptive words for the Heartland? Same for "Heartland's heartbreak" dominating the scene.
    -I like the image of his "mouse-brown curls" falling in lazy spirals
    -I like the mind-meld of brain crystals/consciousnesses, but perhaps that much intensity is what's weighing this first page down too much. I feel how important this aspect of the story is, but in the first 250, precious space might be better served to (re)introduce readers to Erth One. Maybe just cut and move the whole "It seemed...while awake" paragraph.
    -I assume that Erth Won is already published? If not, there's really no reason to pitch or query the sequel.
    -Good luck!