Friday, August 3, 2012

Reply Hazy, Try Again

Oh, goody, another meme. The 2nd this week. Thanks, Marcy.

The rules: 
  1. Post the button with a link to the originator.
  2. Share an excerpt from your current WIP, perhaps something you're struggling with, are stuck on, or just can't "get right."
  3. Ask a question about your excerpt. It can be something easy such as "What do you think?" or something more in-depth, such as "Can you suggest a better way to word such-and-such," or "How can I make the emotions in this scene more realistic?"
  4. Tag 8 people.
I'm struggling with my whole WIP, but that's normal. However, I just wrote a scene that I did have a question about. First, here's the scene:

“Polly? Is that you?”

If I had been alone I would have ducked behind another group of people, but Lord Raynor wouldn’t let me go. The man approaching us was dark haired and of medium build. The face seemed familiar, but I had no idea what his name was.

“Lord Simon, good evening,” Lord Raynor said.

“Lord Raynor. And Polly?” the man asked.

“I’m sorry, I don’t think we’ve met,” I said. “My name is Vertiline.”

“Vertiline? Really? You look just like this girl I met out in… Well, I guess you wouldn’t be her, would you?”

“It sounds like you have a twin somewhere,” Lord Raynor said. “Who is this look-alike?”

This was not a conversation I wanted to have. I needed a dodge, and fast.

“This wasn’t in Zebulon’s Spring, was it?” I asked.

“Um, yeah,” Lord Simon said. “You know…”

“I’ve heard of her,” I said. “Whatever you do, don’t mention it to my father. Please. He doesn’t know I know.”

I looked towards my father in what I hoped conveyed shame.

The topic was instantly dropped.

And the question: I'm trying for subtlety, but I don't want what I'm implying to be missed. Did I give enough clues, or should I add a little more to make it clear?

Tagging: Yeah, I don't do that. I'm where chain emails go to die (usually because by the time I get them, they've made the rounds), and I assume that you've already been tagged. However, if you have not, and you are reading this, consider yourself tagged. (You're welcome.)


  1. Well I have to say your WIP sounds very interesting!! I'm not sure I caught what you were hinting at, but I first thought that the look-alike mentioned was really the speaker... Maybe I'm just thinking about it too much though ;)
    Sounds really cool!

  2. I read it through twice to make sure I understood. Very subtle, but very good.

    Also, that was a couplet.

  3. I think you are just right on clarity. I did want to point out something in your prose though. The use of the word "was" is an indication that you could use more powerful verbs and be active instead of passive. Passive voice can make a story a real snooze fest.

    You write: The man approaching us was dark haired and of medium build. The face seemed familiar, but I had no idea what his name was

    Revision: A dark-haired man approached. His face looked familiar but the name escaped me.

  4. It took me a reread for me to get what I think you were trying to convey, but once I realized, it was an excellent twist.

  5. I need more info to give you answer but I do find this excerpt intriguing ...


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