Sunday, January 27, 2013

January Test Run #2

TITLE: Dreamcatcher
GENRE: YA Speculative

The first things I notice when I come to are the rough pavement against my right cheek and the taste of copper coating my tongue like a layer of fresh paint. My head’s pounding and I want nothing more than to hurl—preferably on the idiot driver of the minivan that just hit me. Then again, the pavement right before my face is looking pretty good too.
My head hurts worse than when Remy starts playing that dumb rap station so loud it makes the entire second floor of the house vibrate. Angela thought it was an earthquake the first time he cranked it up while she was over. That was entertaining.
I laugh at the sheer patheticness of it all—I get hit by a car, and the first thing I do is think of my brother—and my stomach turns over, squirming against my breakfast. It’s as I go to sit up, rubbing at my temples and feeling the warm, slick moisture slide over my fingertips, dripping red across my vision, that I finally do feel my stomach lurch enough to force the vomit up and out of my throat, and then I am heaving across the pavement, only vaguely aware of the ambulance siren in the distance.
It’s as I’m throwing up that the woman behind the wheel of the minivan finally realizes she hasn’t killed me and comes rushing out to make sure I’m not going to die anytime in the near future, either.


  1. The voice in the first paragraph pulled me in. And held me. Nice descriptive visuals and not overly done. Love this. Want to read, NOW! :))

  2. The first things I noticed were the use of the words "hurl" and "patheticness". It clearly shows the narrator as a teen, but I wonder if the awkwardness of using a made-up word could be avoided while still retaining the voice - "It's so pathetic I gotta laugh -- I get hit by a car..." etc.

    I like the vividness you're aiming for with the descriptions but it's so detailed it trips me up as a reader - I'm wondering how rubbing your temples with blood on your fingers ends up dripping red across your vision, or how a stomach that turns over also squirms against its contents. That sentence is also quite long, which makes digesting it a bit difficult.

    I'm also confused as to how the narrator, who has just sat up from being laid out on the pavement, can know that the woman who has rushed to the narrator's side is the driver of the vehicle that hit her or him. Some showing of why the narrator would know ("A woman is sobbing "I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry" as she kneels beside me...") could work.

    That said, I love this start. The first-person present-tense works well with all the descriptions and I'm thrown onto to the street, bloodied and confused. I also want to know why thinking of his or her brother is so pathetic at this moment, hinting at some other twisted tragedy somewhere. Great stuff!

  3. The opening paragraph has a great hook and the descriptions and thoughts paint a vivid picture. The last paragraph through me off, because it seemed outside of POV. Try describing what the woman does and says instead of telling what the narrator couldn't know. Good luck!

  4. I agree the first paragraph really hooked me, and the voice is strong, but all the references to vomit turned me off. Maybe one would suffice. Good work!

  5. Great first paragraph, it also hooked and reeled me in. The third paragraph is a bit much for me, but I like the woman approaching him/her in the fourth. I just don't understand how he/she knows that this woman is the one who hit him. That's quite a leap.