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A collection of snippets of the books I write and, occasionally, my life and the things that inspire my writing...

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Weekend Writing Warriors January 31, 2016

Hello all.  Holy cow--the end of January! Welcome back to another week of sharing your writing with other writers.  
Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly bloghop.  Each week, participants sign up HERE at wewriwa.com, then post 8 to 10 sentences of their work, published or unpublished, on their own blog to go live between noon, Saturday, and 9:00 AM Sunday EST. Then we visit each other and read, comment, critique, encourage--all those things that do a solitary writer's heart good. 
              Snippet Sunday group from facebook--not us, but many of our participants do both, can be found HERE


I'm excerpting from  my 2014 Nano WIP, Scifi/Dystopian. Working title: Dai Klavven. Last week, after an explosion and a wall collapsed on her comrades, the MC is the last survivor in her group. She lobs a grenade at the advancing enemy (aliens), then runs. The last line was:  "Please dear God, let the rest of the aliens be dead, not behind me searching through the rubble for survivors, or for hidden bunkers full of kids."

 
We pick up from there:

    
A patch of green woods beckoned just beyond the battlefield.  A battlefield? For God’s sake, it was the parking lot for Buzzy Bill’s Superfoods. Well, where Buzzy Bill’s used to be.
 She raced to the cover of the wooded ravine, then stumbled down the steep slope. Slogging through ankle deep muck at the bottom,  and clawing her way up the other side felt like it took forever. Her muscles burned, but she pushed on through thick brush and brambles.  After clearing the worst of it, she stopped and leaned forward placing her hands on her knees, and tried to catch her breath. 
Desperate for air, her body nearly rebelled when she stopped breathing long enough to listen. They were already slopping through the mud in the ravine behind her.

        


    

That's it. Things don't look so good for our heroine. Thank you for reading it. I learn from your feedback--and I'm so grateful for any insight you share.

54 comments:

  1. You've conveyed her desperation well. I especially like that the battlefield used to be a grocery store parking lot -- one of those little details that brings a passage to life.

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    1. Thanks, Ed! :-) I'm glad you liked that the grocery store parking lot is now a battlefield. I was trying to show her flip-flopping between the horrors of the present juxtaposed with the normal of the past.

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    2. It's working. I'd add, though, that the horrors of the present are even more horrible when juxtaposed over the peaceful past.

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    3. :-) Good thing to keep in mind. Thank you again, Ed. :-)

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  2. Wow! I'm fearing for her life - and I loved the detail about the grocery store lot being a battlefield, it makes everything seem much more real and frightening. Can't wait to read more!

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  3. Brilliant Teresa! Excellent attention to detail.

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  4. Oh no, bad things coming! I like that readers get a pause in the action here. One thing I notice - and I don't have a suggestion to tweak it, I struggle with it too - is how often the word "she" is used. Sometimes a rewrite will fix it, but it has to sound natural and that's not always doable. So if you find a way to improve that issue let me know :-)

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    1. I reworked those sentences so many times last night. I still have reworking to do. You're absolutely right about the plethora of "she". I struggle with it when I'm writing short sentences to speed up the pacing in action scenes. Thanks for your crit, Marcia! :-)

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  5. Use her name more often. That works for me. Wonderful snippet.

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  6. More great action. Love the pause that terrifies. For what it's worth, the use of "she" didn't strike me as too much when I first read it.

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    1. Thanks, Alexis! I did do some tweaking after Marcia's comment. It needed it. :-)

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  7. Buzzy Bill's Battlefield? A great way of showing how much her world has changed very quickly.

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    1. It has. Thanks for commenting on that, Christina! :-)

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  8. Love that glimpse of how the world has changed. Good job.

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  9. I liked the comments about the old world, her exhaustion and the muddy woods. Can she hide?

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    1. Thanks, Aurora. It's nice knowing what's working. :-)

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  10. I love this excerpt for so many reasons! In so few sentences, you show an aspect of life before the aliens, make me experience her running away as if I was running, and then make my heart race even more with the last sentence. Well done! :)

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  11. Wow, I FEEL the tension and the physical effects of all that running...really a great snippet, well written. Nice touch about the parking lot! Terrific story, which I want to read in its entirety soon :)

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    1. I'm at 35K words right now. I know where it's going, and what has to happen along the way. I just want to get it right. I have so many messes on my hands with flawed manuscripts right now. I'd love to get your opinion when it's finished, Veronica. This is your genre! Thanks for all of your encouragement. :-)

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  12. Such a visceral depiction of her struggle. And the line about the battlefield being the parking lot of a store really hit home. Great snippet!!

    And yeah, can you believe January is done? It just got here!!

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    1. Thanks, Rose! I'm so glad it resonated with you!

      Yep, hard to believe we'll wake up to a February morning. :-)

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  13. Holy moly, she is still running and even with all that effort, she barely seems to get away from her enemy. Will she reach safety before she runs out of steam I wonder? I will keep reading to find out. :-) Great snippet as always, Teresa!

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    1. Will she reach safety? Now that is THE question. lol. And I'm so glad that you, as a reader, are asking it! Thank you so, so much, Stephanie!

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  14. The contrast between normalcy as represented by the supermarket and the battlefield is wonderful.

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    1. Thanks, Elaine. I am so glad it's working!

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  15. Wow, creepy place. And probably creepy people following her.

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  16. Yikes! You have me worried for her. She better come up with something quick!

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    1. Thanks, Caitlin. You have good reasons to worry. :-)

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  17. Things do not look good for her! Her realization that the battlefield is actually what used to be such an ordinary place is very haunting. Excellent snippet, Teresa!

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  18. It must be mind-blowing to see a familiar place turned into a battlefield. You capture those feeling well here.

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    1. I can't imagine the horror. Thanks, Jeff. :-)

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  19. How terrifying. Great imagery both with her emotions and the visual.

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  20. I seriously admire this character and her stubborn will to survive. It's clear that she's not having an easy time, but that's not going to stop her!

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    1. Thanks, Amy. No, it won't stop her, and she has bad times ahead. :-)

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  21. Buzzy Bill's made me laugh at first, then it hit me in the gut that it represented a world gone away. And don't worry about the "shes". When the action going on is this intense, nobody is gonna be noticing pronouns! ;-)

    ~Joyce Scarbrough

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    1. Thanks, Joyce. :-) I'll have to pay attention the next time I read a book with an intense action scene it. :-)

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  22. Great description of the physical sensations.

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  23. Wow they really don't give up, do they? I love how she initially thought of it as a battlefield and her shock to thinking that afterwards. Great visuals and sensations as well. I think she better get running again, or lob another grenade down there if she has one. I'm curious to know what these aliens really want.

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    1. I am so happy to read this little snippet inspired so many comments from you, Danielle. Thank you!

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  24. Great snippet. I like the visuals in it. Well done.

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