Category Archives: Critique Blog Hop

Critique Blog Hop – Page Three of my new novel “Optimal Red”

Sunday_SnippetsI’ve been quite remiss about Sunday Snippets recently.  I’m sorry. 😦

I’ve been in an editing frenzy finishing my novel Fire in the Woods (This week I will start working on the query. Yay!)

I’ve also been doing edits for my publisher for Paper Wishes.

I haven’t gone back to think about Henry at all, and it will probably be a little while before I get there.  But in the mean time, here is the next page from Optimal Red.

As a refresher, Henry just left his house to go meet his soon to be wife.  His Mom prods him to make sure the new Misses gets pregnant tonight.  As Henry walks, he remembers his recently deceased father.  Here’s the next page!

Enjoy!__-)

As Henry approached the lifts, a woman with sandy blonde hair stood from her desk and greeted him with a brilliant smile.  “Good morning, Sir.” She held out a smoky glass pad.  “Identification, please.”

Henry reluctantly placed his hand on the panel.  Before today, he’d been considered a minor, and one of his parents would have given their identification.  He’d never placed his own palm on one of the devices.  A tone sounded, and he drew his fingers back.

“Happy birthday, Sir,” The woman said. “One moment please, and I will fetch a lift to Sigma Central.” Her fingers tapped gracefully across her console.

“Do you know what I should do when I get there?”

“There will be another guide to meet you when you step out.  No worries, Sir.”

The large silver doors behind her split apart, revealing a small square room encased in silver and glass, not much larger than a lavatory. His footsteps created an echo as he strode inside.

Trepidation fluttered within Henry’s chest as the doors closed behind him.  What would happen? Would the walls move? Should he touch one of the buttons?

The floor seemed to fall out from beneath him.  He cried out as he grabbed the wall with one hand, the other reaching for his stomach as is muscles bottomed out. He whirled in the car, and jumped away from the glass window as he passed down through an open area of tall trees and plants.  The room expanded beyond his field of vision, and then disappeared as he fell into another cement expanse.

swish swivel squiggle 2

The Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop is on!

Want to join up? Click here for the rules, and leave a comment to have your name added to the list.  The more the merrier!swish swivel squiggle 2

Click on over to these great writers to check out and critique what they’ve posted!

Note:  Those who have not been participating have been removed to save on critiquer’s “click” time.

http://mermaidssinging.wordpress.com/

http://caitlinsternwrites.wordpress.com/

http://ileandrayoung.com

http://jennykellerford.wordpress.com

https://jennifermeaton.com/

http://richardleonard.wordpress.com

http://jordannaeast.com

http://itsjennythewren.wordpress.com/

http://wehrismypen.wordpress.com

http://jlroeder.wordpress.com

http://letscutthecrap.wordpress.com/

http://ashortaday.wordpress.com

http://mandyevebarnett.com/

http://www.michellezieglerauthor.com

http://joeowensblog.wordpress.com/

Advertisements

Do you have a second to see if this works?

This is going to be a tad longer than a normal Sunday Snippet.  Sorry, but I need a few last-minute set of eyes.

Fire in the Woods is days from being done, and I decided I needed to add a little something, and I don’t want to send the work out to query without another few opinions on this.

I am adding a phone call/message from Dad.  A beta mentioned that if their daughter were missing that they would be ringing her cell phone off the hook.  I added a ringing phone, but I now decided to add a message, and I need to know if it’s believable.

Here’s the set-up:  You are a Dad, and a Major in the Army.  Your daughter just took off with Public Enemy Number One.  There is a huge manhunt going on. She’s not answering her phone. Does this sound like a believable message to leave on her cell phone? (From Jess’s point of view)

swish swivel squiggle 2

My fingers tightened on my phone as I began to slip it into my pocket.  The thought of the message from unavailable tightened my chest.  What if it was Dad?

“David, hold on for a second.”

I leaned against the back of the building and turned on my phone. David propped himself beside me and grabbed a banana from the bag.  He perused each end, and I quickly opened it for him.

He smiled.  “Thanks.”

I moved past Maggie’s message, touched unavailable, and brought my phone to my ear.

My father’s sigh tore my soul in two.

“I guess I can’t blame you for not answering.” A slight hum vibrated the casing against my cheek. “I saw the surveillance footage, and it’s pretty obvious you’re not a hostage. I can only imagine what he told you to make you trust him.” I glanced at David as he chewed his banana.  Dad’s voice quavered. “Sweetheart, you need to understand that he is a soldier, wounded behind enemy lines. He is not above lying to a seventeen-year-old girl to get what he wants.” I could imagine Dad pacing the floor, rubbing his hand across his tightly cropped head.  “Jess, you’ve always been like your mother, and I know there’s no changing your mind once you’ve made it up, so I’m not going to bother asking you to turn him in.”

Really? You gotta be kidding me.

“But what I do want is for you to get away from him. Just wait for him to be distracted and run as fast as you can.” I could almost sense him gritting his teeth.  “We will find him, Jess. And you know that I’m not going to sleep until you’re safe.” Muffled voices spoke in the background behind my father’s steady breathing.  “Please come back.  I can’t lose you, too.”

The call ended, and I powered down my phone.  I stared at the blank screen as my father’s words bled into me.

I can’t lose you, too.

I’d never considered the possibility of anything bad actually happening to me. I was safe with David, wasn’t I?

David popped the last of the banana into his mouth and tossed the rest into the trash beside a loading dock. What would happen if the Army cornered us?  Would there be shooting? Would David protect me, or use me as a shield?

David slipped his hands into his pockets as he strolled back to me, his smile easing any uncertainty.

My conscience fought to call Dad— to let him know everything would be all right, but I knew he’d just try to convince me to come home. I slipped the phone into my pocket.

“Are you all right?” David asked.

I nodded, biting my lip as Dad’s voice haunted me. You know that I’m not going to sleep until you’re safe.

I closed my eyes and took a deep breath.  Sorry, Dad.

“We need to find a place to hide for the night.”


swish swivel squiggle 2

The Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop is on!

Want to join up? Click here for the rules, and leave a comment to have your name added to the list.  The more the merrier!swish swivel squiggle 2

Click on over to these great writers to check out and critique what they’ve posted!

Note:  Those who have not been participating have been removed to save on critiquer’s “click” time.

http://mermaidssinging.wordpress.com/

http://caitlinsternwrites.wordpress.com/

http://ileandrayoung.com

http://jennykellerford.wordpress.com

https://jennifermeaton.com/

http://richardleonard.wordpress.com

http://jordannaeast.com

http://itsjennythewren.wordpress.com/

http://wehrismypen.wordpress.com

http://jlroeder.wordpress.com

http://letscutthecrap.wordpress.com/

http://ashortaday.wordpress.com

http://mandyevebarnett.com/

http://www.michellezieglerauthor.com

http://joeowensblog.wordpress.com/

Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop: The Second 250 Words of my New Novel, OPTIMAL RED

Sunday_SnippetsOh Yeah!

It’s the Sunday Snippets

Critique Blog Hop!

.

In this hop, participants post 250 words of their work in progress to be critiqued.  Then everyone hops around to critique others.  Don’t have a post of your own?  We’d love a critique anyway!  And next time you can sign up yourself (see below)

swish swivel squiggle 2

Here we have the second 250 words of my new novel Optimal Red, which is the sequel to LAST WINTER RED from the Make Believe Anthology.

Like the first set, this has not been proofed.  I have not gone back to it since I first wrote it, so slash away!  What’s missing?  What do I need to expand upon?  Are you connecting with the characters?

swish swivel squiggle 2

Henry took a deep breath and took in the room around him.  How long would it be before he would see this room again, before he’d see his mother and siblings again?  Weeks? Months?

A stiff jerk tested his posture as his mother gave a final tug on his shirt and plastered it against his waist.  “There.  Your wife will be pleased.”

He brushed his lips against her forehead.  “I will make you proud, mother.”

She nodded, walking him to the door.  “Be sure that you do.”

The stark gray hallways echoed with his solitary footsteps.  Any other day he would have walked toward the right, to the common rooms and study areas.  Only once before had he walked to the left, taking the long gray hallway toward the unknown. It had been to see off his father when he’d been asked to work in the agricultural center—the last day they’d seen before news of the terrible accident.

As Henry approached the lifts, a woman with sandy blonde hair stood from her desk and greeted him with a brilliant smile.  “Good morning, Sir.” She held out a smoky glass pad.  “Identification, please.”

Henry reluctantly placed his hand on the pad.  Before today, he’d been considered a minor, and one of his parents gave their identification.  He’d never placed his own palm on one of the devices.  A tone sounded, and he drew his hand back.

“Happy birthday, Sir,” The woman said. “One moment please, and I will fetch a car to Sigma Central.”

“Do you know what I should do when I get there?”

“There will be another guide to meet you when you step out.  No worries, Sir.”

swish swivel squiggle 2

The Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop is on!

Want to join up? Click here for the rules, and leave a comment to have your name added to the list.  The more the merrier!swish swivel squiggle 2

Click on over to these great writers to check out and critique what they’ve posted!

Note:  Those who have not been participating have been removed.

http://mermaidssinging.wordpress.com/

http://caitlinsternwrites.wordpress.com/

http://ileandrayoung.com

http://jennykellerford.wordpress.com

https://jennifermeaton.com/

http://richardleonard.wordpress.com

http://jordannaeast.com

http://itsjennythewren.wordpress.com/

http://wehrismypen.wordpress.com

http://jlroeder.wordpress.com

http://letscutthecrap.wordpress.com/

http://ashortaday.wordpress.com

http://mandyevebarnett.com/

http://www.michellezieglerauthor.com

http://joeowensblog.wordpress.com/

Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop: The First 250 Words of my New Novel, OPTIMAL RED

Sunday_SnippetsOh Yeah!

It’s the Sunday Snippets

Critique Blog Hop!

.

In this hop, participants post 250 words of their work in progress to be critiqued.  Then everyone hops around to critique others.  Don’t have a post of your own?  We’d love a critique anyway!  And next time you can sign up yourself (see below)

swish swivel squiggle 2

All right.  Call me crazy… but I don’t have anything else to post… So I am posting the first 250 words of my new novel which is the sequel to LAST WINTER RED from the Make Believe Anthology.

I just wrote this about three hours ago, and it has not been proofed.

Yeah.  I’m nuts.

What I’m looking for is world-building.  Can you feel the world? There is no scenery yet.  What would you like to see in this scene to help you visualize?

This is a sequel.  For those of you who have read LAST WINTER RED: Does this draw you right back into that world?

swish swivel squiggle 2

“It’s not every day a man gets to meet his wife. You should be excited.”

Henry smoothed the red cuffs accenting his tapered black shirt.  “I am, Mother. But this is the most important day of my life. I’m a little nervous.”

“Pish.  Today you are just getting married.  Nine months from now, when you validate yourself with your first child—that will be the most important day of your life.” She brushed non-existent lint from his shoulders.

“Of course mother.” Henry held perfect, stiff posture as his mother moved around him, her long red skirt shifting at her ankles as she straightened every seam.

“There.” She stepped back, smiling.  “As perfect as any young Red could be—and so handsome.”

“I’m sure I’m no more handsome than any other, mother.”

She shook her head.  “Nonsense.  You are ten times the Red of any of your siblings.  You’ll be wed highly.  I guarantee it.”

She picked up a pitcher from the table and poured two glasses of water.

“Were you frightened, Mother, on your wedding day?”

“Frightened? No, of course not.  Excited was more the word.  This is the day all Reds are born for—to finally have the opportunity to join society, to add your distinction to the world.  Your father and I validated ourselves on our wedding day, you know.”

Henry bit back his laugh.  “Yes, Ma’am, you’ve told us all many times.”

She handed him a glass.  “None of your siblings have granted our family the prestige of a wedding day conception.  I look forward to good news tomorrow morning.”

“I will do my best, Mother.” He bowed his head.

swish swivel squiggle 2

The Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop is on!

Want to join up? Click here for the rules, and leave a comment to have your name added to the list.  The more the merrier!swish swivel squiggle 2

Click on over to these great writers to check out and critique what they’ve posted!

Note:  Those who have not been participating have been removed.

http://mermaidssinging.wordpress.com/

http://caitlinsternwrites.wordpress.com/

http://ileandrayoung.com

http://jennykellerford.wordpress.com

https://jennifermeaton.com/

http://richardleonard.wordpress.com

http://jordannaeast.com

http://itsjennythewren.wordpress.com/

http://wehrismypen.wordpress.com

http://jlroeder.wordpress.com

http://letscutthecrap.wordpress.com/

http://ashortaday.wordpress.com

http://mandyevebarnett.com/

http://www.michellezieglerauthor.com

Related articles

Critique Blog Hop #3 – 250 words from my YA Urban Fantasy

Sunday_Snippets

Oh Yeah!  It’s the  Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop!

In this hop, participants post 250 words of their work in progress to be critiqued.  Then everyone hops around to critique others.  Don’t have a post of your own?  We’d love a critique anyway!  And next time you can sign up yourself (see below)

swish swivel squiggle 2

Okay… Here’s mine.  This is the second 250 words of my new YA Urban Fantasy: “The First Day of the New Tomorrow”.  In the First 250 words, Maya is in the bathroom getting ready for school.  She put on her glasses, and her vision got blurry.

swish swivel squiggle 2

“What the…” She grabbed the counter and pulled the metal frames from her face.  The room slipped into perfect crisp focus again.  Three slow breaths calmed her only slightly.

A ray of sunshine poked through the white lace curtain, landing on a towel beside the bathtub.  A spider web clung to the ceiling, holding more dust than forgotten prey.  Three nails popped through the wall near the door—all normal things, except she could see them clearly—just as clearly as she could see her glasses perched on the counter before her.

“Okayyy…”  She lifted the spectacles to her eyes, crinkling her nose as the world blurred before her. She stared at the lenses.  “Teenager’s eyesight clears up overnight.  News at eleven.”  She smiled and slipped the glasses into her pocket.  “I’m certainly not complaining.”

She trudged down the stairs and found her mother’s obligatory, “Don’t forget to eat breakfast” note fastened to the refrigerator door—as if she’d even look at the fridge if she weren’t already in breakfast mode.

Rifling past the food savers and soda cans, she sighed.  Would a few eggs be too much to ask for? She grabbed the milk and closed the door.  Cereal would have to do.  Spinning, she pursed her lips, seeing the nearly empty Cheerios container on the counter.  Great.  Eat breakfast, but I’m not leaving anything for you to eat.

She reopened the refrigerator and startled.  Three eggs lay beside last night’s spaghetti sauce, neatly balancing on the wired shelving.  How the heck could she have missed them before?

“Okay, eggs it is.”

swish swivel squiggle 2

The Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop is on!

Want to join up? Click here for the rules, and leave a comment to have your name added to the list.  The more the merrier!swish swivel squiggle 2

Click on over to these great writers to check out and critique what they’ve posted!

http://mermaidssinging.wordpress.com/

http://caitlinsternwrites.wordpress.com/

http://ileandrayoung.com

http://wyrmflight.wordpress.com/

http://www.mandyevebarnett.com

http://womanbitesdog.wordpress.com/

http://jennykellerford.wordpress.com

https://jennifermeaton.com/

http://richardleonard.wordpress.com

http://jordannaeast.com

http://letscutthecrap.wordpress.com

http://threepiecebikini.blogspot.com/

http://itsjennythewren.wordpress.com/

http://writerscrash.blogspot.co.uk/

http://wehrismypen.wordpress.com

http://wordsbreathedupon.wordpress.com/blog/

Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop!

Sunday_SnippetsOh Yeah!  It’s the  Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop!

In this hop, participants post 250 words of their work in progress to be critiqued.  Then everyone hops around to critique others.  Don’t have a post of your own?  We’d love a critique anyway!  And next time you can sign up yourself (see below)

swish swivel squiggle 2

Okay… Here’s mine.  This is the extremely newly revised first 250-ish words of my Young Adult Urban Fantasy “Fire in the Woods.”   My goal is to start submitting this to publishers within the next month, so I need these page to really shine!

swish swivel squiggle 2

The bed rumbled beneath me as the shrill scream of jet engines ruined a perfectly good daydream.  “Dad!  The stinking Air Force is flying over the houses again!” I turned up the volume on my MP3 player, closed my eyes and lost myself in musical bliss—until my pink earphones popped out of my ears.

“I said, what do you expect me to do about it.” Dad dropped the earbuds on my lap and folded his way-too muscular arms.

“I don’t know.  You’re the Army, aren’t you?  Go invade them or something.”

His lips set as his eyebrows rose, twitching the spikey hairs where a normal person’s bangs would be.  “Invade them?”

“I don’t know.  Do something.  It’s annoying.”

A smile crossed his lips.  “How about we…”

The room rattled around us as the engines of another plane throttled overhead, followed by another. Dad crouched as if ducking, his six-foot body instantly folding with military precision.

I pulled my pillow tightly to my thin frame.  “What…”

“Shhh.” His hand shot out, silencing me instantly as a rattling resonance echoed through my open window.  “That sounds like…”  His eyes widened.  “Jess, get down!”

A huge boom throttled my ears, barraging my mind with an infestation of sound.  Dad’s hand gripped my arm, pulling me to the floor before he shielded my body with his own.

The ground shook, and a soda can shimmied off my dresser, smashing to the floor and fizzling all over the carpet.  I slammed my palms over my ears, cringing as the explosion quaked the walls around us.

swish swivel squiggle 2

The Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop is on!

Want to join up? Click here for the rules, and leave a comment to have your name added to the list.  The more the merrier!swish swivel squiggle 2

Click on over to these great writers to check out and critique what they’ve posted!

http://mermaidssinging.wordpress.com/

http://caitlinsternwrites.wordpress.com/

http://ileandrayoung.com

http://wyrmflight.wordpress.com/

http://www.mandyevebarnett.com

http://womanbitesdog.wordpress.com/

http://jennykellerford.wordpress.com

https://jennifermeaton.com/

http://richardleonard.wordpress.com

http://jordannaeast.com

http://letscutthecrap.wordpress.com

http://wehrismypen.wordpress.com

http://writerscrash.blogspot.co.uk/

http://itsjennythewren.wordpress.com

250 Word Critique Blog Hop – This is what we’re gonna do.

Have you ever just had “one of those weeks”?

Yeah, well, I’m there.  I had all these plans, but they went NO WHERE. I need three of me, I swear.

Anyway… There were enough people interested last week to start up a Critique Blog Hop.  Every day I sat down to contact everyone to start this week, but, well, you know how life gets in the way.  Sorry about that.

I even had all the rules typed out, but they are stuck in a “cloud” that is spiraling forever and not opening when I click on it, so I can’t post them now all pretty like.

So, for next Sunday, if you want to join up, comment below and leave your blog address in your comment.  I will paste them all together in a blog hop list that everyone can paste into their own posts if they like.

Next Sunday, be prepared to post your first 250-ish words from your current work in progress on your blog (250 and until the end of that sentence)

We will all hop around and critique.  I’ll post a rules page (all about being nice and stuff) as soon as I can get into that stupid cloud.

Oh!  I’ll also create a button that you can place in your widgets or somewhere easy to find so we can click on it and easily find your post if we don’t get to you on Sunday and you post something else.

Sound good?

Oh, also, if you can think of a catchy name for the blog hop, let me know.  If no one can come up with something by Sunday afternoon, I’ll make up a button that says “Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop” but I’m totally open if someone can come up with something catchy-er.

Join up and let’s get critiquing!

Sunday_Snippets