Friday, July 29, 2011

Lesson 5: Embarrassing Blunders (+ bonus lesson w/JEFF SINCLAIR! Punch!)

Howdy Everybody!

As you can see from the title... We've got another awesome guest author today.  The fabulous Mr. Jeff Sinclair hails all the way from Canada.  I'm loving these Canadian authors, aren't you?  I hope you enjoy our videos! :)

Here's mine:



1. Your, you're:

You're is a contraction of two words put together You and Are.

So the secret is easy.  Every time you go to type YOUR or YOU'RE, remember to reread the sentence and if  you meant to write you are, and it makes sense, then type YOU'RE.  If it doesn't make sense to say you are, then type YOUR.

I love your hair.  You're so amazing the way you can style it like that.  What did your mom say when she saw it?  Come on, let's show my sister, you're going to freak when you see her response.  I know she's going to love it too.

Make sense?

Okay.  On to the next set of words:

2. There.  Their.  They're:

There is the word we use to say where something is or to describe something.  It is also the most commonly used of the three similar words.

There is my hat!  I've been looking for it everywhere!  Place that there.  There are several ways you can do that.

Their is the word we use to describe people or living things with.  It is always associated with a person or animal you're talking about.

Their hat is sitting on the counter.  The monkeys liked their new home.  The fish made their way home happily.

They're is a contraction of the words THEY ARE.  So the same principal applies as before with you're.  If it make sense to say they are, then that word goes there.  <--hehee.

They're such a cute couple.  They're the fastest cars I've ever seen.   Those colors are so cool, they're awesome!

Okay.  Next words:

3. It's, Its:

It's is a contraction of IT IS.  So same principal again. If it doesn't make sense to say IT IS, use the other one.  A little secret?  Its always is associated with an animal or human.   Actually, the difference between its and it's confuses more adults than anything else I know of.  If you're not sure, do the contraction test out loud and see if that apostrophe is needed or not.  Lol!  Don't you just love the English language?

It's such a pleasure to see you.  I'd stay away from the dog, its days are numbered.

Okay.  One more set of words:

4. Where, Were, We're:

Where is used to describe where something is.

Where are we going?  Have you seen where my ball is?  I'd love to see where that movie was made.

Were is used to describe something that has already happened.  It's in the past.

Were you happy with the song I wrote?  What were you thinking?  Just so you know,  you were not fooling anyone.

We're is a contraction of WE ARE.  Same rule applies as before.  Replace the words WE ARE in your head to see if they make sense.

Hey, we're all heading to the park, do you want to come?  We're in here!  We're so loving your party, it rocks!

Whew!  Well I hope that helps.


Bonus Lesson, Punch! by, Jeff Sinclair:

Now onto Jeff's video--ways to start your story, or make it Punch!


Thank you so much, Jeff!  So I'm going to post a couple of my story starts below so you can see how it is I try to start with a punch... a grab the reader's attention:

PERSUADED (The Jane Austen Diaries)--

            
            There was an awkward tug, a twist and a slight jerk, before the glass beads spilled all over the floor. 
            I’m such an idiot!  This wasn’t even my necklace!
            He was supposed to have left by now.  He’d already said good-bye to his friends.  I watched as Gregory hovered in the doorway, debating over what he should do.  I decided I’d make it easier for him.  As I knelt on the floor I turned my back, completely ignoring him and picked up the mess. 
            There, now you can go.  See?  I don’t need you.  It’s only a few beads after all.  I sighed at the thought of being such a klutz in front of him, again.  It wasn’t a loud sigh, so I was surprised to see his long lean fingers surrounded by mine and the beads.  I glanced up and saw the top of his blonde head as he avoided me, yet, at the same time acknowledged the fact that I needed help.  It had been years since I’d seen that head and those hands so close to my own.  Years.  Bewildered, I paused a moment and didn’t know how to handle myself.  

PRIDE & POPULARITY (The Jane Austen Diaries)--

“Taylor Anderson is the hottest guy ever!” Madison said as she leaned in closer to me to catch a better view of him moving across the concrete basketball court in our local park.

To my right, Alyssa, who looked just like a younger Lucy Liu, practically burst an internal organ when she exclaimed, “I know. I’ve secretly dreamed of marrying him since I was ten.” A pathetic sigh followed.

Disgusted with myself for somewhat agreeing with their drooling, I rolled my eyes. “Yeah, you and every other girl in this park. Look around you—is there a girl here not into Taylor?”

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (Gothic Faerie Tales, Book One)--

“ARRRRUUUGHHHHHH!”
The prince half sobbed, half howled into the night air—his feeble skin ripped, agonizingly making way for the tormented form to escape.  Nearly doubled over, he’d never known such excruciating pain before, and yet the old woman continued to laugh at him. 

Her unmerciful cackles pierced his ears louder than his tearing skin.

Sickened and dazed, the transformation ended with a jolt, leaving a deep rooted throbbing ache throughout his whole form.  Everything stung with the awareness of newly stretched and swollen limbs.  Taking a ginger step, he practically fell over from the searing nerve endings as they shot up from the soles of his feet to his legs and back.  Tender, singed and unprotected newness covered his whole form.  He was so preoccupied with trying to cope, he didn’t hear the woman until she repeated herself.

“You’ll be sore for quite some time, so you’d better get used to it.”  Her laughter grated again.

“Why?” gasped the prince, “Why me?  Why now?”  He tried to straighten and turn to meet her gaze more fully, but while attempting to, he stumbled and collapsed.  Fire surged through every bone as his raw nerves met the harsh ground.  The pain was more unbearable than the transformation.  Nausea flooded into his pounding skull and threatened to spew out his throat onto the ground if he didn’t hold as still as possible.
He felt her cane grind into his hip, but he was too weak to acknowledge it.

“You boy, needed to be taught a lesson.”  She jabbed the sharp stick and continued, “Now you will forever know what it feels like to be ugly.  Your eyes are too hazy at the moment to even see the figure you’ve become, but when you awaken—” she moved the cane to his inflamed disjointed knee and dug deep into the taunt tissue. He flinched and writhed in agony, his howls filling the darkened forest.“—and you will awaken. 

You may wish you were dead, but however, that is not the purpose of such a transformation.  You will live through this—it will be several days until you’re healed enough to make it back to your castle, prince.”  She hissed his title as if it were the curse and not her hex.  “At that point.  When you’re able to crawl up the stately stairs to your fine room, I want you to haul yourself up upon your chiseled table and peer into the looking glass.  Take in every inch of your demented form.

“That will be the day you embrace what has truly happened to you and the day you realize what it means to be an hideous beast forever.”

“NO!” he yelped as her cane lashed at his engorged, twisted spine.  “Please…”  His body convoluted.  Nausea swam in dizzying circles, until he could no longer focus on anything but the bile rising, aching to relieve itself, as the cane pounded again and again.

The old woman wheezed, and thankfully, the whacking stopped.  She coughed for some time, before weakly sputtering out the rest of the curse.  “You-you will be forced to stay this way forever, half man, half beast—unless you find some poor pitiful female to embrace, accept, and love you for the monster that you are.”
Her breathing became more labored.  “You h-have one year to achieve that impossible feat.  O-one year from today to ch-change your spoilt habits and become a man.  If-if you do not succeed, you will be forced to roam the earth in your gruesome form, terrorizing all who meet you, c-causing them to flee in fear from your presence.  Though I must warn you—”

She wheezed again, a huge snarled inhale, which forced a series of bone rattling hacks from her.  They became larger and more pronounced with each cough—precious air forcing its way into her battered lungs. 
The prince felt the space around him shift, before he heard the thud of her collapse and the silence that followed.

It was several minutes before he was able to slowly scrape his body against the earth in painful strides enough to see her, and another several minutes before he could move his limbs enough to ascertain that she was indeed dead.

He smiled then, a bitter hate-filled smile. 



Thank you for participating in today's lessons!  I hope they have helped.  :)  And thank you, Jeff Sinclair for sharing your video and the start of your favorite books with us! 

Homework HOMEFUN ASSIGNMENT:  We want you to add the beginning of your story and we'll critique it.  Also, if you have a question for me, you can add that as well!  

See you next week.  :)

63 comments:

  1. Yes! First comment finally!! Here's the beginning of the fourth chapter of my book. I just wrote it earlier this morning so, warning, it may suck :)

    4

    The next morning I woke up at five thirty and dressed quickly, If I didn't hurry I'd be late. 

    "Danny."

    I shook his shoulder roughly.

    "Danny!"

    He groaned. 

    "Will, stop being so rough, if you wanted another round all you had to do was ask-"

    I blushed.

    "No, I- I have to leave for work now."

    "Okay."

    He rolled back into the covers and snuggled into my pillow. I leaned over and kissed him on the forehead then got my bag and left. Thirty minutes later I walked into the office and headed towards Mr. Kents office.  

    "Sir?"

    "Come in."

    I entered the office and sat in one of the chairs opposite his desk. I took out the vanilla envelope in my bag and laid out the contents neatly. 

    "Okay, I have three of the daughter, four of the parents together and two of each parent alone-"

    "Very nice, I like this one of the daughter, captures her innocence."

    "Thank you."

    "Okay, they're scheduled to come in at around eight, so when they come up just follow them in with the envelope okay?"

    "Yes sir."

    He dismissed me with a wave of his hand and I closed the door behind me. I opened the guidelines for the next client on my laptop and read through it thoroughly, already getting ideas for the young couple. 

    Before I knew it, it was eight and I was in Mr. Kent's office with the clients selling the pictures. What I didn't expect, was my ex to be their nephew.

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  2. @hartlei.. It's a great beginning of the 4th chapter, very intriguing. Now could you post the beginning of the very first chapter? We'd like to look at the beginning of your book. To really see if it hooks your reader from the beginning. :)

    Jenni

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  3. The Secret's of Jennah

    Prologue

    Jennah Claire Avery, a lot of people knew her, but didn't actually know her. She was a different person to everyone, Well, Personality wise. Krystal Renee, Silver Longhorn, Trinity Taylor, and Hailey Jane were her so called best friends......Until May 7th 2010, The day Jennah Died... Or that's what everyone thought.

    Chapter 1
    you could hear the rain on the roof of the Garage. Silver and Jennah were alone, Since Jennah's parents were out of town. The faint music in the backround, you could barely hear it over the rain.
    "Here S, take a drink," Jennah Handed Silver a flask
    "What is it?" Silver asked taking the flask
    "Don't worry it's just something for you to relax,"Jennah Smiled at Silver, motioning her to take a drink.
    Silver took a drink and almost spit it out because of the burn," What is that?"
    "A little bit of everything in my parents stash of boo's,"Jennah took a drink from the flask,"I wanna dance, will you dance with me?"
    "sur-" Jennah Didn't let Silver finish by pulling her off her chair and started dancing to the song. Silver was kinda stiff, and not really dancing.
    Jennah pulled Silver close to her,"Why so tense, is it because of your parents? you know you tell me anything"
    Silver Tucked her straight black hair behind her ear and bit her lip."Yeah, my parents are get a divorce."
    Jennah Grabbed the flask,"Drink away, It'll make you feel better,"
    Silver bit her lip, her nervous habit,"I don't know"
    Jennah moved closer to Silver so they were only a couple inches apart," Don't you trust me?" Silver nodded yes," So just take a drink, unwind and relax. You can trust me"
    Silver took a deep breathe and took a huge drink from the flask,"That burns"
    Jennah smirked, and put the flask down." Honey, a little pain is worth some fun"
    Jennah tucked Silver hair behind her ear, and leaned in so there lips just barely touched each others. The unknown feelings coursed through Silver, but Jennah didn't feel anything except happiness over being able to play with another persons heart. Jennah could feel Silvers heart beat, loving the feeling of empowerment. Silver was the one to actually kiss the first person, though Jennah sure just put herself out there.

    Just another time Jennah took advantage of someone.Poor poor, Silver.....

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  4. Good lessons! I really liked Mr. Sinclair's books too and am hoping to read at least one of them soon...For the Homefun Assignment I'm actually going to only post my prologue. So here it is:


    'It has lasted long enough: It’s time for this war to end.' As I write the note, I consider my two prisoners. Though they are not in a dungeon, they are afraid and that brings a smile to my face. There is little hope that they will return to the life they knew. Though they may be released, everything will be changed. I will be on my way towards having the largest fiefdom and a springboard for the royal court and kingship.

    Of course, there are a few details about the plan to secure – the parents would have to actually surrender, there must be no interfering from outside sources, and the other siblings must not meddle. Of course the son was away making war – I cannot help but smirk, however the girl: She could possibly present a problem. Though rash and confident, she was young and, the obvious, a girl. However, her determination and charismatic ability to sway a person with her words and actions made her a force to be reckoned with. No matter, I will ensure that she is well taken care of and will be too busy to attempt anything that could spoil this moment for me.

    Having finished and dispatched the ransom note, I strode from my study down the cold corridors of my castle. The servants scurried out of my way, especially when they watched where I was heading. Stopping outside the familiar door, I leaned in to hear the whispered words. I drew back, surprised. I had been unaware that the family had seriously gained religion. Well, their pleading prayers and encouraging words would do nothing for them. God did not exist, and their fate lies in the hands of mere, fallible mortals.

    Sliding the small eye panel aside, I glare inside, just to ensure that they do in fact fear me. Instead, I am greeted with two pairs of curious and confident dark blue eyes, much like my own. Ah, so the rumors are true: they take after their older siblings and have their bravado, the brave humanity which their parents lack. It matters not – all confidence will soon be replaced with fear. I give a cold laugh before slamming the panel shut and turning back towards my study. There are other pieces to guide into place.

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  5. This is part of the begining of one of my many books that are not yet finished. :P


    Blood, dark red puddles of blood were all around the room as if carefully placed by some sick mind. I knew what I had done, I had just killed someone, someone I loved dearly. My own sister, my younger sister Miri was sprawled out on the ground, blood slipping from her wrists, neck, ankles, and chest. I whimpered and backed away from her small body and into a crisp, white wall.
    “No! No, no!” I wailed as I sank down to the ground. I couldn’t believe that I had killed her, I wasn’t that strong. “No.” Something was wrong, very wrong. Not just with me and my sister’s body laying on the floor, but the atmosphere.
    “What’s going on?” A nurse came in, I had forgotten that I was in a hospital. . .
    “Sh-she-she’s dead,” I sniffled as I put my head in my hands and continued to cry wildly like an idiot.

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  6. Pluto is a Planet - Period!

    Chapter One -

    "Flight 2353 to LA is now boarding. Please have your passports and your boarding passes ready to be checked" the posh ticket lady speaks into the microphone which helped everyone waiting to board hear her over the noise of the loud busy airport gate.

    I was sat in Vancouver International Airport waiting to board the plane to LA. This was my first time flying ever and I was going alone. It was safe to say I wasn't so excited about it!

    "Deep breaths Zola, the plane is not going to suddenly drop out of the sky before crashing and burning and your not going over any oceans so it's very unlikely that you will end up on an weird island like Lost!" I quickly tell myself to myself while imagining being on Lost. It would be kinda awesome...

    I quickly jumped up off of the uncomfortable seat and darted to the start of the line - managing to get there just in front of a little old lady.

    She was one of those cute old ladies who have fluffy, snow white hair and little red rose but are mean, grumpy and always repeat the line 'back in the good old days...". I could tell she was one because I had a sixth sense for them!

    I suck my tongue playfully out at the old lady who in return gave me a Darth-Vader-strangling-look.

    I quickly handed my ticket to the posh ticket lady, got it checked, before running up the hall to the plane before I could chicken out and run back home to my grandparents.

    I quickly looked at my ticket to find the seat I was at and quickly ran to my seat - ignoring the calls of the air hostess to slow down and stop running about the plane.

    I pushed my bag under the seat in front and got the leaflet with the information on what to do if the plane crashed. I quickly located the nearest exits and my escape routes.

    Once I had memorised everything, practiced the brace position 10 times and tightened my seat-belt for the millionth time. I pulled out a book from my bag and began to read.

    'Astronomy' by Nick Harrison.

    One of the many books my dad wrote. My heart sunk at the thought of my dad.

    He had gone missing a 4 weeks ago. It was early Saturday morning and I had stayed up late staring up at the stars and wanted to sleep in so my dad had gone into the nearest major city to meet some researchers to help him with his next big secret project.

    I usually went with him - and would be introduced as his assistant, which I basically was, and would listen to their conversation but this time was different - I stayed home. All warm and cosy in my bed.

    The last time I saw him was when he came to kiss me goodbye and told me that he wouldn't be home for tea just before he left.



    He was confirmed missing 2 days later.


    loved this lesson!!! :)

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  7. Okay here is my homefun assignment.


    Chapter 1
     
    It seemed quiet, at least up until a loud crack tore through the air. It was as if a branch broke, and then a piercing scream followed it.  I immediately reacted, pulling out a stake and whipped around to see the cause of the sound. I realized with a sinking feeling that it wasn’t a branch that broke. It was Jeremy’s leg. Jeremy was looking at me with pleading eyes; he couldn’t speak, because the person who had broken Jeremy’s leg had his hand clamped over Jeremy’s mouth. I fixated on the guy, evaluating him to try and determine his weaknesses.
               
    My mind raced, how would I free Jeremy?  There was laughter farther away in the alley it wasn’t much but it was enough to momentarily distract the guy, I seized the chance and threw my stake. Unfortunately my target ducked my only stake. Well this sucks. The guy smirks as if he knows my dilemma and it’s given him confidence. He takes a step forward toward me, I took a step back. I spotted something over the guy’s shoulder and felt relief. It was my friend Liz and her partner Jordan, and they were armed to the max with stakes and weapons unlike me.
     
    They were tense and ready to spring into action, but for some reason they hadn’t moved. What were they waiting for? The guy took another step forward and Liz and Jordan reacted. Jordan threw a sort of liquid poison that reacts immediately with certain people causing the guy to bare his fangs in anger and pain. While the vamp was distracted Liz darted forward and plunged a stake through the vamp’s heart. The vamp crumpled staring in disbelief at the stake protruding through his chest for a moment before dying. Liz and Jordan sighed looking at me with similar disapproving looks
     
    “How do you manage to get yourself into these kinds of messes?” asked Liz.
     
    “It’s a talent,” I replied as I rushed over to Jeremy to check on him. Liz and Jordan walked over to Jeremy too and stood guard as I evaluated Jeremy’s injuries.  The only major injury Jeremy had gotten during this ordeal was his broken leg which was sticking out at an unnatural angle. He also had a few cuts and scrapes but I doubted Jeremy was thinking much of them. The pain from his leg must be excruciating because his face was contorted in an expression of pain.
     
    “We need to get out of here,” said Liz, “there might be more vampires coming out from the vamp bar and they might smell the blood.
     
    “It’s not safe here,” agreed Jordan.
     
    “Alright, Jordan and I will pick Jeremy up and get him back to the van,” I said. I sighed; the van was at least three blocks away. “Okay Jeremy just hold on, we have to get you to the van. I picked up Jeremy from his arms and Jordan went over to Jeremy’s legs and picked them up. A groan came from Jeremy. I looked at him; he was biting his lip to keep from screaming in pain. “Alright let’s move quickly; Liz cover us,” I commanded.
     
    We started walking quickly but surely. We walked three blocks with no incident except for some homeless guy emerging from a dark alley. I was pretty sure we had scared him with us holding a limp body because Jeremy had passed out from the pain and Liz with a stake in her hand poised to throw it. Once Liz saw who it was she put her stake down and smiled an apologetic smile. It didn’t seem to reassure him much because he turned around quickly and ran back down the alley and never once did he look back. We walked a bit more to a deserted parking lot that looked familiar. Beer bottles and garbage strewn around, empty shopping carts on their side, graffiti on the walls of buildings close to the parking lot. It was where we were dropped off earlier this evening. All of a sudden headlights turned on and blinded us with their brightness.

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  8. This is the beginning of Chapter 17 of my story 'A Single Silver Coin'. I hope you enjoy! :)


    “So they are…are…Vampires!?” Arabella asked incredulously, and Jeremiah could not help but smile at her amazement and disbelief. He wondered to himself if his own amazement had been as humorous to witness. “And that woman…she was a…Witch!?”

    “Yes they are, and yes, she was,” Jeremiah replied. They were sitting on the one of the couches aboard the Cordelia, the day after the ambush of Beauregard’s Tower. Jeremiah had been warned that Arabella would most likely be unconscious for a week at least, as her wounds seemed so severe. But Almabeth, given the night on her own with Arabella, had produced miracles, and now here Jeremiah sat, talking to a near perfect Arabella. “Her name is Almabeth, and we both owe her far too much…”

    “And the Vampires,”

    “The LeReaus,” Jeremiah corrected. He wanted her to think of them more as people, than creatures.

    “Do they…drink…blood?”

    “You know, I am not entirely certain,” Jeremiah confessed. “For now, they think it best that I know only the basics. But Arabella,” he took her now fragile seeming, bandaged hands in his own, “no harm will come to you under their watch. It was a term.”

    “A term?” Arabella questioned. “A term of what?”

    “My participation,” Jeremiah replied, but before he could elaborate, Arabella interjected.

    “Oh yes! I know all about you being a certain saviour of the world,” she said smiling and with a wink.

    “You do?” Jeremiah asked with a slight chuckle, to which Arabella nodded.

    “I’ve been informed quite greatly by Almabeth,” she said smiling.

    “Well hopefully you,” Jeremiah began. But before he could continue, Conlan was suddenly in the open entrance leading out into the hall. Jeremiah turned his gaze toward him, as did Arabella.

    “My Kith Father wants a word,” Conlan said tensely, his large muscles bulging threateningly as his arms crossed across his chest. “In the library. Now.”

    Jeremiah nodded. “I’ll be there. Just give me a moment.”

    Conlan’s gaze flickered quickly to Arabella, and he scoffed before leaving the two. Arabella sighed deeply.

    “You seem to be on their bad side,” she commented, and interlaced her fingers on her lap.

    “I went against planning,” Jeremiah confessed. “To get some things that Beauregard stole…belongings of my parents.” He then slid easily off of the couch and onto his feet. “You’re safe now,” he said to Arabella, his smile returning. “I’ll return as soon as I can.”

    Jeremiah went to walk away from Arabella, when she suddenly reached out and grabbed his wrist, which caught his attention once again.

    “Would you like me to come?” she asked. “I mean,” she pulled him closer to her ear and whispered, “we could take them.”

    Jeremiah could not help himself and broke out laughing. “Ah yes, an urchin and a near-broken sea Queen against a family of Vampires; what could possibly go wrong?”

    He gave her one last smile, before walking away, following Conlan’s steps. And his smile slowly disintegrated with every step.

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  9. Sorry! I forgot it was the start of the first chapter! Here's the start of the 1st chapter. :)

    “Oh you poor, poor lad,” said the well fed robust woman in the bright pink silk dress who, upon seeing Jeremiah, proceeded to take out her small fluffy lace purse, dig her hand into it, which was a visibly tight squeeze, and pull out a copper coin. She then placed it into his hand and said, “There you go love,” before making her way down the street, servant with umbrella in hand following close behind.

    Jeremiah started to examine the coin between his long fingers, taking in every detail that had been etched into it, which sadly included the terrible seal of Constantine on its back; a grid-like design, with dots in the gaps.
    Jeremiah slid his hand through his filthy tangling hair, which had fallen around his face as his head was bowed, and slipped it back, giving him a clearer look at the piece of metal.

    His deep blue eyes took in its features almost hungrily, standing out from the sun kissed skin of his long face. His body had become so skinny that it seemed like his clothes, if the rags he wore could be called such, merely hung from his long frame. The white shirt was ripped and stained from usage, and the knees of the brown trousers had worn away; the bottoms of which were ripped up to his shins. His feet were just as filthy as his hair and were covered in small cuts.

    “Filthy beggar!” hissed a venom-filled woman to her equally as toxic friend, whom both shot a glare at Jeremiah as they passed, seemingly disgusted at his presence. “Would blame the parents but…chances are he hasn’t got any!” Her friend, who seemed as dim-witted as she was toxic, let out a wail of laughter, thinking it amusing beyond compare, and threw another poisonous glance over her bony shoulder.

    There is much more to it, but I didn't want to clog the comments! XD

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  10. Do-do-do-do- doo xD
    ~

    Orphan. One simple little six lettered word that made people look at you in pity, their eyes holding that sad, sympathetic look as if to say, ‘It’s okay, I know what it feels like’. Truth is they don’t; no one does, unless they are one. They said that there were one hundred and forty four million orphans in the world. If there were so many, then why did people keep ignoring us? Act as the problem wasn’t for them? I had had enough of it. I had been through home after home after home of foster parents, and each time my heart used to lighten when I found out that I could go to a new family, after being abandoned yet again, in the hope that they would be mine forever. But I’d be wrong. They would stick by me, smile at me as if to say they cared-for the first few weeks, or even months if I was lucky. But then I would suddenly become too much. My weird ways were enough for them to think that I was permanently possessed. They’d run away screaming from me when it became worse and worse.

    The nightmares, I mean. They hadn’t always been so bad, but lately they had been getting more and more unbearable. So much in fact that my latest ‘family’ of two parents and two siblings, had jumped ship two weeks after taking me on board-my record yet. I could remember the clear look of relief when I was taken away from their home, to the hospital to undergo checks once again. They deemed me to be hallucinating at night when I screamed in anguish from the pain the blackness was causing me. But I was not crazy. I was a good girl-I got the grades, I was polite to everyone I knew, and even strangers, and my looks weren’t that bad either. But what good was any of that when your ‘siblings’ spread stories about you at your new school faster than bacteria could multiply? One day I would be the curiosity of the school-the new kid, something to play around with-and the next I was avoided like the plague. It was as if they were under the impression that some of my ‘craziness’ would rub off them, and then they would be screaming each night like I was, thinking that bad things were going to hurt them.

    ~
    dum-di-dum-di-dum. lol ;)

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  12. Solving Suicide

    In today's world, so many horrible, traumatising events are happening.
    Molesters, murder, theft, poverty, abuse.
    So many things...

    These sorts of things question the existence of God. If God was real why would he allow such disgusting things to happen? Many people say God isn't real. Others say that God doesn't care.

    I say that God has given us free will.
    Why I think this is simple, my best friend committed suicide. And she did it by her own hand; I was there when it happened. And till this day, that night still haunts me.

    Hannah Eastway was the coolest person, I knew. She kept her grades in check and still had time to party. Her boyfriend Craig Tarn was the sweetest guy ever. He brought her chocolates and, her favourite flowers, tulips, everyday.
    Her family life was fine. Her two brothers and younger sister, had fights like all siblings. She was a daddy's girl and was given everything she wanted. She was the queen in school and everyone loved her.

    She wasn't a mean girl but the complete opposite. She was the out-going loud one, the one everyone noticed. To top it all off, she was beautiful. She had short, silky blonde hair, bright blue eyes and she was very tall and slender. She was that girl that everyone wanted. Hannah Eastway had the perfect life.

    So you could probably relate to why I was surprised when Hannah called me, telling me that she loved me like I was her own sister, and that those would be her last words for me.


    ***
    I didn't like how I started this one story, it felt like it dragged and was too over-done. If you could offer any advice, that would mean a lot because I really need to fix the way I start my stories =)
    Thanks for the great lessons!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Hey Jenni! So I really want feed back from Jeff and you, but I don’t think my beginning would be appropriate for some of the younger students. Should I put it up anyway? Or should I email you and have you and jeff look at it that way? (Sorry for being a bother, it’s not really that much, but I just don’t think a nine year old should be reading it.) Please tell me your opinion. Thanks! ☺

    ReplyDelete
  14. Wow! You guys are doing awesome. I'm having an extremely busy day (and a migraine to boot) so I'll be looking over these tomorrow or later this evening if I don't crash first. And it looks like Jeff is celebrating his birthday today (it was yesterday) so he won't be around until tomorrow either...

    However, I've jumped on quick to tell Tess! Yikes. Keep it G rated please. (no swearing, sex, etc.) Always. I don't ever plan on removing this site, so these answers will be here for a very long time. For anyone to go back to the archives and look over.

    Do you have another story beginning you'd like us to look at?

    Thank you so much!
    Jenni

    ReplyDelete
  15. Oh, and thank you so much Tess for asking first! *forgot to add that part. *blush*

    Ugh. Right. Think I may just cancel my day altogether and lie down for a bit. So sorry, my head is just yucky pounding. I love you guys! I promise to answer these ASAP, so keep them coming. :)

    Jenni

    ReplyDelete
  16. Posh Boy
















    The light was thankfully not searing through my blinds on the morning of the 4th July 2011, my blackout blinds stopped that. It was very hot and bright that day, I would have been woken up at the crack of dawn. The noise from outside was thankfully not seeping into my room, my double glazed windows stopped that. We had next door neighbours moving in that day with a large and noisy removal truck, and panick when they thought they had forgot to pack something and left it at their old house. If only they'd left Felicity Knight there.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Oops I did not mean to go OTT on the spacing....

    When will the books be available in the U.K. and by any chance will this awesome competition of yours be open for people in the U.K.?

    ReplyDelete
  18. Secrets of Fire - prologue

    I rushed into my room. The thick walls barely drowned out the war cries, the screams, and the explosions. Throwing open the lid of my trunk, I grabbed my robe, belt, gloves, and boots. In one swift motion, my robe settled lightly on my shoulders. Within the next second, my elbow-length gloves were pulled on, soon sealed together with heat. My belt was clipped loosely around my waist, hanging lower to the left side than the right side, as was my preferred fashion.

    How could I even care about trivial things such as fashion with a deadly war echoing all around me?

    I yanked on my leather boots, thick, and etched with beautiful designs in a lovely bronze color. Tracing my fingers lightly over the two open edges of the boot, I sealed them together with heat, just like my gloves. Three daggers were placed in their sheaths attached to my belt. My pouch was promptly refilled with tiny bombs.

    Everything was ready. I had my battle gear all ready to go, everything that I needed was armed on my body somewhere.

    But did I have the courage? Did I have the strength to leave my room, and to face the demons? Was I prepared to kill?

    Choking back a quiet sob, I crossed the room over to the full-length mirror that rested on the wall beside the door. My hair cascaded down around my face, resting neatly above my chest. The noises of the battle above thundered around me, an explosion caused the room to shake. I clenched my fists. They needed me.

    Taking a few steps back, I pulled up my hood and sucked in a deep breath. I strode towards and through the door wondering if I ever would walk out of this skirmish alive. Whole? How did this mess even occur? If that one day had never happened, or gone just a bit differently, maybe… just maybe I would never have had to do this.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Here's the first chapter...but it really sucks :) so try not to throw up lol and sorry for the excessive amount of cursing I stared out all that I saw :)
    1
    I slammed the phone down angrily and ran a hand through my hair.
    "William!"
    The door swung open immediately and I began talking as he took notes. When I finished he stood there waiting for another command and I took him in. He was about 5'6, had dirty brown hair and light blue eyes. Very built and had a masculine face. I smiled.
    "William, you're gay right?"
    His eyes widened and he flushed a bright pink.
    "W-well, I-I"
    "Would you be interested in dating my son?"
    His face turned a deeper shade of pink and he looked away.
    "I'm setting up a dinner with you and him tonight at the Charleton at eight thirty. Don't be late."
    He opened his mouth to protest but I shooed him away with my hand and leaned back into my chair.
    Flashback
    "Oh f*** Danny, yes! Harder!"
    I smirked, don't get me wrong. I didn't support the way my son treated women but then again it was good he would always have many...friends. I walked into the lounge and froze.
    "Ah s***! What the f***?"
    They both separated at the sound of my voice and Danny flushed a dark pink.
    "Danny! What the f*** is this!? And what the h*** are you doing fucking on my god**** couch!"
    The man stood up.
    "Hi, I'm Richard."
    I started at him like he had twenty heads.
    "I don't care, leave!"
    He took his clothes off the ground and left. Winking at Danny as he passed. The door closed and a awkward silence settled between us.
    "Danny, d-do you- Can you put some clothes on?"
    He blushed.
    "S-sure."
    While he was dressing I spoke.
    "Do you really like men?"
    He flushed again.
    "Yes dad, I do."
    I sighed.
    "I-I won't stop you, but please keep the a-affection to a minimal around me please."
    "Of course Dad, thank you."
    My flashback was cut off as my phone started to ring. I picked it up impatiently.
    "What."
    "Dad?"
    I immeditly felt myself relax at the sound of his voice. And no, I don't love my son. We've just have a very close relationship ever since the incident of his mothers death.
    "Yes Danny?"
    "Are you at work still?"
    "Yes I am, why?"

    ReplyDelete
  20. My office door slammed open and in stepped Danny smiling like a fool.
    "Hey Dad!"
    I chuckled.
    "Hi Danny."
    He sat in one of the chairs in front of my desk and propped his feet up. William flung the door open and rushed in, in a hurry a moment later and started to talk quickly but as soon as he saw Danny he shut up, his face turned red and he squeaked out an apology and left as quickly as he came. I looked towards Danny to see his face was a slight shade of pink and he was staring at the closed door.
    "Who was that?"
    "My new assistant William."
    He smiled.
    "He seems...interesting."
    "Oh, tonight you have to go to the Charleton at eight."
    "Why?"
    "Because I said so."
    He looked at me skeptically.
    "Dad, is this another attempt to get me with someone?"
    "Yes." 
    "Dad!"
    "Alright, after this one, if you really don't want me to I'll stop."
    "Promise?" 
    I nodded and my phone beeped.
    William: I have the contract
    Me: Come in
    I smiled at the fact that he texted me instead of bursting in my office like he usually would. The door opened and he stepped in slowly and shyly. He handed me the contract and I took it. He left as soon as he came in.
    "Is he always that shy?"
    I shrugged.
    "Depends."
    "On..."
    I smirked.
    "Who's around."
    He flushed pink and I laughed aloud.
    "Stop it!"I quieted down and he grabbed his phone and keys.
    "I gotta go."
    I frowned.
    "No, Danny I didn't mean to make you upset-"
    "You didn't. But last time I checked it's six thirty."
    I smiled.
    "Okay. I'll see you at home?"
    "Yup."
    "Oh. And tell William he can leave too."
    "Kay, love you bye."
    Sorry if the spacing is weird, I took it straight off my profile. It's the first one so it sucks :( sorry
    *and I know there's alot of unnecessary dialogue and actions but I wrote it before I had any type of guide/instruction on how to write a good chapter

    ReplyDelete
  21. This is the beginning of my story Cloaked Beauty :D.

    Chapter One

    ~ Celeste~

    Whoosh!
    The long wooden stick moved effortlessly as I guided it in an arc above my head, then brought it down. The night sky was dark, the moon casting a shadow of my figure with every step I took. Crickets chirped from the moist dark green grass, as if cheering me on. An owl watched eagerly from a tree, it's wide luminescent eyes watching for my next move.
    I was practicing my swordsmanship in the backyard, like I did most nights, sneaking out of my room late so no one would come looking for me. Pretending the staff was a blade, I sliced the air, listening to the satisfying whip as it smashed into the wind. My focus was on the tree before me, using it as a target for my attacks.
    “Celeste!”
    I paused, lowering my arm. My gaze drifted upwards to my bedroom, where the call had come from. Immediately, I recognized the voice as my mother's.
    “Come downstairs please! There's someone here you need to meet.”
    I frowned. Who would come over at this hour? Or rather, who was even allowed to visit at this hour? “Coming!” I yelled back. Hiding the staff under a set of bushes, I ran over to the wall that led to my bedroom. I spotted the tree I usually used to get back into my bedroom. After finding a place in the trunk to place my foot in and push myself up, I began scaling my way up the tree. At the top, I crawled onto one of the sturdy branches. Quickly but carefully, I leaped from the branch and grabbed at the railings attached to the balcony. Pulling myself over, I swiftly landed on my feet, then entered my room, closing the door behind me and hearing the click as I locked it.
    I gave myself a quick once over as I passed the mirror on my desk, then exited the room.
    My footsteps were soft and silent as I padded my way down the stairs. I scanned over the crowd that was gathered at the entrance of the house. My two younger sisters stood at the bottom of the stairwell along with my mother. Anticipation and excitement clearly showed on their faces. Their hands were clasped together in front of them, as they stared at the boy standing there before them. This man, was the prince.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Hi!! Here's a part of the beginning of one of my stories...

    ***
    The pain was so excruciating that eventually I
    surrendered to the dark spots filling my vision. I passed out and let the torture continue as I retreated further into myself, trying to forget what was happening to me, what was happening to my body.

    I drifted in and out of this hellish pain until eventually when I finally dragged myself from the unconscious stream; I was facing a brightly lit sky full of dazzling stars. I stared but didn’t focus. Something was different with me. I could feel it, I could smell it, and I could see it.

    I struggled into a sitting position, panting heavily. A pang of pain went through my body and I winced. This was a whole new feeling. I had never felt pain like this, so raw and vivid. I had lost something precious to me.

    I could feel the breeze brush past me but I could no longer feel air waves, the way they drifted in and out, mingling and dancing through the sky. I could no longer hear things clearly, it seemed so quiet. I felt as if I was missing half of my being.

    I stared down at my body and grimaced. It was caked in gritty dirt and blood. I couldn’t even see my clothing. I stared at the gash across the lower part of my leg. Blood had caked around it but it was still oozing blood out slowly. I stared but was no longer fascinated with the sight of it.

    Blood did not allure me.

    I looked away blinking; feeling a weird sensation and a rush of water fill my eyes. I wiped it away staring at the dewy substance on my fingers. I stuck my tongue out to taste it. It tasted like salt. I still didn’t understand how crying worked.

    I got onto all fours trying to push myself upwards but I couldn’t get up.

    The pain was too strong.

    Instead, I let myself collapse to the ground and be consumed by the darkness again.

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  23. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Hi Jenni, I've been following your lessons and this is my favourite one so far. I can write pretty well (most of the time) but beginnings are a real headache. I've started on this story for quite some time- it has 18 chapters now- and I would love if you could critique the beginning. Thank you so much :D

    Prologue

    Thornwell Academy for the Gifted
    Est. 1970

    5 August 2010

    Dear Miss Eleanore Lee Petingill,
    Admission to Thornwell Academy for the Gifted

    We are pleased to inform you that you have a place at Thornwell Academy for the Gifted. Due to your excellent performance in the annual Thornwell Humanities Essay-Writing Competition, we have decided to offer you a partial scholarship, which reduces the school fees to an amount equivalent to the fees of a government school.

    Thornwell Academy is a school for only the most exceptional students. It has been established since 1970. We accept students who are academically outstanding or exhibit great talent in dance, music, arts and sports. We seek to nurture them to the best of their abilities so as to allow them to fully utilise their talents to achieve their dream, give back to society and ensure the continued prosperity of mankind.

    We sincerely hope that you will accept this scholarship and join this school. We await your letter by no later than 30 August.

    Yours sincerely,
    Professor Julia Delmont

    *
    “Thornwell Academy?” I stared at the letter incredulously.

    I reread it. Once. Twice. Thrice.

    I screamed.

    *
    “Mother, I’m so going to Thornwell!”

    ReplyDelete
  25. here you go!!!


    739,467,328,103,157 plus 1. Thats how many people i have kil, uh brought to the afterlife. This was a child. A little girl. Charity was her name, Charity White. Age 5, she had fallen off of the counter while cooking with her mother in Sitka, Alaska. She hit her head and broke her neck in the process. She followed becuse i promised a place with happiness where she would have whatever she wanted. I was not lying. She didn't even know she was dead. I almost cried. I didn't thought. The last time i cried was the first time i had cried. It was also the first child i led away from this world.

    ReplyDelete
  26. heres my story Charming My Prince (= im gonna put a twist in the next chapter but i really want this one critiqued..(: thanks



    “I’m never going to fall in love,” Dominic promised me, running his fingers through his thick, brown hair. “It’s just some silly game people try to play. But they always lose. Not me though.”

    I laughed, hoping he was wrong.

    “What about you? Are you going to play that silly game people call love?” he asked, hoping I wouldn’t agree with him. If I didn’t he would have to argue with me and he loves to argue.

    “I don’t know… I kind of like the thought of love. Going out on dates… calling each other…laughing with each other… oh, we’re here.” I looked at him and smiled. Didn’t he see my love for him behind that smile?

    “Okay well talk to you later, maybe at lunch. Depends on what lunch you have this year. Maybe we’ll have a few classes together. But anyways, thanks for the ride.” He said as he got out of my beat-up red car and walked over to his friends.

    “No problem.” I said even though he was gone. I sighed, hopped out of the car and locked it.

    Here goes my first day as a sophomore.

    **

    “Um, LOSER, move out of my way!” A red head girl said, pushing me, making my lunch tray (Filled with spaghetti I might add.) topple on to my white shirt.

    “Great…” I breathed, sighing to myself. Throwing away what was the last of my lunch, I ran to the bathroom.

    I opened to door and fortunately saw no one was in the bathroom. Grabbing a paper towel, I ran it under the water quickly and tried to scrub the stain that was forming.

    The door burst open, and Dominic walked in. He did a double take of me, and shock streamed through his sea blue eyes.

    “Whoa! Anna, what are you doing in the guy’s bathroom?!” He shouted, his eyes widening.

    “I’m not…you’re in the girl’s bathroom.” I said, a grin making its way to my face.

    “What?” he said, looking around, “Oh..oh..sorry..” His cheeks flushed a dark pink.

    “It’s ok.” I said laughing.

    “What happened to your shirt?” He asked.

    “Oh… some girl pushed me and my lunch went on my shirt…I’m trying to get the stain out so I don’t have to walk around like this for the whole day.” I say, embarrassed.

    “Here you go, you can use my hoodie.” He said, pulling of his school sweatshirt and handed it to me.

    “Thanks.” I said, grasping it.

    “No problem. Now I should go before some girl comes in and starts to hit me with her purse or something. Catch you later, Anna.” He said walking out the door.

    “Bye.” I said, laughing and looking down at the sweatshirt. I threw away the paper towel I just realized I was still holding. I threw the hoodie on and walked out the door.
    **
    thanks(:
    xoxo
    pumpkinyflav

    ReplyDelete
  27. Ok so thanks Jenni! There's another begging to a different story (a G rated beginning), and this one needs more work.... I literally just wrote it. I had like NO idea how to start this story. Hope you like it. Any feedback is appreciated. Thanks!

    Somewhere Only We Know

    Chapter One


    “How is he?”
    “He should be ok in a few days expect-”
    “Except what?!?!?” the middle aged women asked before the younger doctor could finish, still shaken.
    “From some memory loss.”
    “Some? How much?”
    “He won’t be able to remember his childhood.”
    “Any of it?”
    “Well, you see memory is tricky. He’ll remember anything that’s been relevant to him in the last four years.”
    “What does that mean?”
    “For example He’ll remember you’re his mother because he’s thought, talked, and seen you in the past four years.” When the woman doesn’t respond right away, he added, “Right?”
    “Yes, Yes. “ She quickly responded, not wanting to scare the doctor. “Nolan was busy at college but not that busy… I’m just worried. Will he ever remember?”
    “That’s tough, most of the blow from the car crash was on this head…”
    “What should I do? He was just coming to visit for the summer, now that he’s just graduated.”
    “Over the next few weeks, show him pictures, tell him stores. If he’s still in touch with some of his high school friends, maybe see if they could talk to him. It’s not an exact science remembering. Usually memories are attached to a feeling, that’s what makes us remember certain things, but not others. Maybe if you can recreate that same feeling, he’ll remember? Was there anyone he was particularly close to in high school? Middle school? Elementary?”
    She sighed, knowing that it’d come up eventually. “Yes, the girl across the street, Josie Coleman. They were inseparable until… Well, I don’t know what happened really. I was working a lot after the divorce. But they had some sort of fallout. It was like one day, best friends, then the next she won’t talk to him. He must have gone over to her house a million times, but she’d never come out to talk to him.”
    “Well I suggest, you find this girl, she’s his best chance at remembering.”
    “What am I supposed to say? Oh hi, I’m Nolan Logan’s mom, do you remember me? Well Nolan doesn’t remember you because he was in a car accident while going out to get me some groceries. Would you like to come help him remember?”
    “What you say is up to you. All I’m saying is, if he doesn’t remember everything in the next three months, it’s likely he’ll go his whole life without a childhood.”
    Mona looks over at her 22-year-old son, dark black hair like his father and brown-eyed. Would all the work she’d done, raising him, be for nothing?

    ReplyDelete
  28. Hi again! Totally cant wait for this competition but I am also wondering, will it be available to people in the UK? I would be totally gutted if it didnt :( Oh, and Jeff; totally rockin' the hoodie! I love it.

    Anyway, for the homefun assignment. Here you go:


    The water crashed against the rugged rocks below me, the noise deafening as a clash of thunder sounded above us. The figure beside me flinched as a streak of silver flashed across the dangerously angry sky and shot through the grey clouds, like an arrow slicing through an unsuspecting heart. The jagged rocks beneath my bare feet shifted slightly, the world beneath us rumbling and shaking. My shaky hands gripped onto the cliff’s edge, my stomach rolling like a sneaker in a washing-machine while the person beside me continued to stare at the hundred foot drop below us unaffected by the raging storm and pelting rain. Opening my mouth to warn the person of another onslaught of rain, the air rushed out of me and a small push from the glaring wind sent me tittering towards the edge. I hemmed and hawed at the edge, loose boulders falling to their deaths while I stared at the drop with wide eyes. Time seemed to suspend then, the misty air clearing enough for me to make out the outcropped rocks at the bottom of the drop. My foot nudged a little closer to the edge, my heart beating wildly in my chest while my stomach threatened to cough up its contents. I held my breath as my hand grasped for a piece of the uneven wall but only finding air. Thoughts wild with splatters of blood and crushed bones, I turned to the figure for help only to find bright violet eyes staring back at me with an unknown emotion. I begged the figure for help, my mouth no longer able to host coherent words but the stranger just blinked, eyes turning back to an ordinary blue before it held out a steady hand for me to take. As my fingers brushed the stranger’s, I realised it was too late. My feet had already lost all grips and before I could scream, I was tumbling off the edge and into the unknown.

    Sitting erect and staring at the space in front of me, I couldn’t help but wonder how on earth I had fallen asleep during my first Honours History class. The teacher had his back to me and hadn’t noticed my unconscious withdrawal to the French Revolution chart he was finishing up on the board. The girl next to me, whom I hadn’t had the chance to speak to yet, gave me a weird look before turning her attention back to the board and scribbling down a hurry of notes.
    While my eyes – and paper – where blank, my thoughts where tumbling inside my head, trying to make sense of my occurring nightmare. It was hard to remember how long ago it had started up – one, maybe two months? Other than the beginning date, everything was clear as day in my head, almost as if I could feel those piercing eyes looking at me right now.

    --

    Anyway, excited to hearing from you! And get better soon Jenni.
    Have a great day/night.
    - Chloe.

    ReplyDelete
  29. @Brightlights---First off, your prologue sounds like a blurb (for the back of the book) to me, so i'd lose it all together. I would consider using the first chapter as your prologue and then jumping first thing into the story. Someone's day. Perhaps the day everyone found out Jennah died. Ooh... you could even give us a brief flashback (in italics) at the beginning of each chapter where we see the awful things Jennah has done to people... I don't know.. it's a thought.

    @Kuualoha---I really want to feel more of this guy. He doesn't seem sinister enough to me. I want to know more of how evil he is. What does the room look like he's in. what are his hands doing? You've got a lot of inner dialogue... but the beginning needs more of a punch. More anger or something.

    @Anna... try it like this:
    Blood.
    Dark red puddles...etc. of a sinister mind.
    I gasp in horror as the realization dawned, that sinister mind was me.
    No!
    I sickened gaze took in the twisted bleeding form before me. My sister. My sweet wonderful sister...

    @Wisahrtm...Okay. I liked the boarding plane announcement at the beginning, but I'd jump straight into *deep breaths zola..* We know she's on a plane from that announcement and we know she's scared from those thoughts. We don't need all the extra back story, so tighten it up. I would also tighten up her boarding the plane, with something like--by the time I'd boarded and had memorized the safety pamphlet, I was ready to read... Then slow it back down to show us her father.

    @Amethyst... You've written a lot more than you need to say the same thing. To really capture your reader and pull them in, choose your words wisely and concisely. Remember your readers are intelligent. they don't have to know every detail. So perhaps your first few lines should read:

    A loud crack and piercing scream rang through the air, startling me into whipping around to see the cause.
    Oh no.
    Jeremy's panicked eyes met mine, before I glanced at the creature holding him, his hand over my friend's mouth so he wouldn't scream again. Jeremy's twisted leg hung limply at an odd angle. Sickness overwhelmed me when I realized that had been the crack I'd heard.
    What in the world was I going to do?

    @Fulcrum--Okay, the very beginning... you lost me in the all the descriptiveness of the old woman who helped him. I need you to break it into more sentences and also tighten it. Not going into every detail. However, all in all, this one surprised me as I read further. Very good.

    @munni--(Jeff and I are splitting yours up, he's taking the first half and me the second. We actually really like yours, we just want to show you the value of an amazing paragraph placement.)


    The nightmares, I mean.

    They hadn’t always been so bad, but lately they had been getting more and more unbearable. So much in fact that my latest ‘family’ of two parents and two siblings, had jumped ship two weeks after taking me on board-my record yet.

    I could remember the clear look of relief when I was taken away from their home, to the hospital to undergo checks once again. They deemed me to be hallucinating at night when I screamed in anguish from the pain the blackness was causing me.

    But I was not crazy. I was a good girl-I got the grades, I was polite to everyone I knew, and even strangers, and my looks weren’t that bad either. What good was any of that when your ‘siblings’ spread stories about you at your new school faster than bacteria could multiply?

    One day I would be the curiosity of the school-the new kid, something to play around with-and the next I was avoided like the plague. It was as if they were under the impression that some of my ‘craziness’ would rub off them, and then they would be screaming each night like I was, thinking that bad things were going to hurt them.

    Jenni

    ReplyDelete
  30. Hey Jenni. Welcome Jeff! I really liked both videos and lessons. Man, if I had known that this lessons were about beginnings, I would have used my last week's assignment for this week. :P Here's another of my beginnings. *crosses fingers it's okay*


    "Staying up late as usual, I see, Tobias."

    The king started, surprised. He hadn't heard that voice in over a year. He looked around trying to find the source. A wide smile spread across his face as he caught sight of the man in the shadows. He was a sight, bruises and cuts all over his face and arms. "Sebastian, what the devil are you doing here? You look awful. What did you get into?" he asked.

    The corner of Sebastian's lips twitched upward as he walked into the candle light. "Good to see you too," he replied.

    The king stood and they embraced, patting each others' back the way men do. Tobias gestured to a chair near the fire and poured his friend a drink. Sebastian sat, glad to rest his weary bones. He had had many troubles and learned incriminating secrets during his time away from court. The king gave the cup to his friend which he accepted and took a swig of. Tobias waited until he had swallowed before asking "Where have you been for the last year? Learning some new tricks?"

    Sebastian smirked and replied "Teaching some old ones actually, and learning some not so desirable secrets."

    The king looked at him, concerned. What kind of secrets would be undesirable to Sebastian, the man who craved knowledge more than anyone he knew, including himself. He relished having any kind of information, no matter how minuscule.

    "What kinds of secrets did you learn that could have you wishing you didn't know them?" he asked.

    "We shall discuss them after we have caught up a little on what has happened while I was gone," Sebastian said, making it clear the matter was to wait until later. Tobias nodded, wondering what disturbing things the man could have learned in his time away. He was quiet, waiting for Sebastian to start talking. Sebastian sighed, setting his glass down on the desk in between them. “You might like to know that I have taken on an apprentice. He has quite a bit of training still, but he will serve you well when he has the right knowledge,” Sebastian told him.

    The king nodded while mulling it over. It was quite rare for Sebastian to take on an apprentice. He must have very good potential in order for Sebastian to take him under his guidance. “Why didn’t you bring him here with you?” Tobias questioned, looking at the man across from him.

    “I thought you might ask,” he answered with a grim expression. “I had to leave him where we’re staying for the time being. It’s safer there for him.”

    “What place is safer than here at the castle?”

    “It is not as safe as you think it is here, Tobias. There are quite a few dangers that even you aren’t aware of.”

    ReplyDelete
  31. @Brightlights!

    I think I know exactly what you want to achieve with that short prologue. Here my suggestion to you. If you want to really hit the reader hard, tell them right up front that Jennah died that day. So, something to the effect of:

    ...

    On a spring afternoon of last year, Jennah Claire Avery — friend to many, but known by few — died. Or so everyone thought.

    ///

    Of course, I’d flesh that out a bit more with details about Jennah, but be careful not to overdo it. It might be a bit too much for that small paragraph to give the names (or at least, full names) of her friends, so consider put them in the chapter, not the prologue.

    Bottom line, though… telling the reader in the very first sentence that she died is a huge attention grabber!


    @Kuualoha!

    What a twisted, scheming character this is! This is what I recommend:

    ...

    Their fear brings a smile to my face.

    As I write the ransom note, I consider them carefully. Their lives will never be what they were. They may be released, but it doesn't matter. I'll be on my way towards... (etc etec)

    ///

    Isolating that first sentence to say fear makes your character happy really has a good effect.



    @Anna!

    You write some great descriptions, and your narrative is very emotional. Here’s what I recommend…

    ...

    Blood.

    Dark puddles of it splotched around the room as if placed by a sinister mind.

    I knew what I had done. I knew I’d just killed someone I loved dearly, but the realization was too much. My own sister, my very own baby sister Miri was sprawled out on the floor, crimson life flowing from the wounds on her wrists, neck, ankles, and chest.

    I whimpered, backing into a stark white wall.
    (etc)

    ///



    @wisahrtm (not sure how to pronounce that, lol)

    You’ve got a lot going on here! Don’t be afraid to slow it down some. For punch, I’d begin like this:

    ...

    Deep breaths, Zola.

    The plane won’t just fall out of the sky. There’s no reason for that to happen. There’s no reason it would crash and burn, and you’re not flying over any oceans, so it’s not likely you’ll wind up on some island in the middle of nowhere…like in, um, Lost…

    I consider being on Lost, which would be kinda cool.

    “Flight 2353 to LA is now boarding.”

    I jumped out of my seat and darted to the gate… (etc)

    ///


    @Angel!

    You write beautifully, and you’re so deeply engaged in the storytelling, I can tell. Here’s what I recommend: Tighten it. Get to the key events quicker, sort of like this:

    ...

    A loud, sharp crack tore through the air, followed immediately by a shrill scream. I reacted, taking up a stake and whipping around to face the source, only to find that it wasn’t a branch that broke. It was Jeremy’s leg.

    He looked at me with pleading eyes, but he couldn’t speak. (etc)

    ///


    @Fulcrum!

    Very well done. Starting with that bit of dialogue is effective enough, and the description of the robust woman is vivid enough to make me want to read more. I can only recommend a bit of editing to tighten it up a bit. I love the way you write her introduction. It’s like a running commentary. So I began with your first line of dialogue, then put the second line in the narrative.

    ...

    “Oh, you poor, poor lad.”

    The well-fed woman in the bright pink silk dress who, upon seeing Jeremiah, produced her small, fluffy lace purse, dug her hand into its tight confines, and took out a single copper coin. She placed this coin into his hand. “There you go, love.” And made her way down the street, an umbrella-toting servant shuffling close behind.

    (Jenni loves this suggestion, by the way.)

    ///



    @Munni!

    Jenni and I both agree you could separate these two paragraphs into several smaller ones for better effect. For punch, I recommend something like this:

    ...

    Orphan.

    A simple word that brings feelings of sympathy and sad eyes to all those who hear it. They say things like, ‘It’s okay. I know how you feel.’ But they don’t. They can’t know, unless they are an orphan.
    (etc)

    ///

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  32. @Amelia... Okay, so I would save all of the very beginning you've got for a bit further along in the book, and instead focus on gripping us straight away with something like this--

    Have you ever met someone who you thought had the perfect life?

    We're talking pefect face, figure, boyfriend, parents... the PERFECT life.

    Have you?

    I have. It was my best friend. And I always believed everything was perfect, until the day she killed herself.

    Now nothing will ever be perfect again.

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  33. @Jenni
    @Jeff

    Thank you, I can actually see the difference with the paragraph setting, though those are some of my shorter ones . . . I have a lot of editing to do now *cries* since that's my finished story. *cries some more* xD
    You guys are awesome though! ;D Rock on literature (?) o.O

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  34. @Jenni
    Thank you for that advice, I'll post another chapter on the long haul when I'm done with it. I'll post this one again and kinda change it up so it's not just talking about Silver and Jennah.

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  35. @Jeff
    Thank you, I'll work on it :)

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  36. @Selena--I find your beginning a bit confusing. How about swapping it to say something like:

    I groaned as I rolled over in bed. It was Saturday, the day designed to ruin my life forever. Why did I have to get new neighbors, anyway? Couldn't we just go back to the way things were?

    Thank goodness my blackout blinds and soundproof windows blocked out the sounds of the moving truck outside or I'm sure I would've woken up hours ago. Hours earlier to dread my life. The life that would bring Felicity Knight right next door. (Or something like that. ;) )

    (Yes, the contest will be available in the UK)

    @Firecat--I really like this one. I would just tighten it a bit to keep that urgency flowing. You want to capture your reader and keep them on the edge of their seats. Like this:

    I rushed into my room. The thick walls barely drowned out the war cries--screams, and explosions. Throwing open the lid of my trunk, I grabbed my robe, belt, gloves, and boots. In one swift motion I flung my robe over my shoulders and pulled on the elbow-length gloves, sealing them together with heat. I scurried to clip my belt loosely around my waist, ignoring the fact it hung lower to the left side than the right side.

    Like that. Just make it more concise... tighten it. Give us every moment in a swift flow. Don't be bogged down by and then I did this, and then I did this... See? Very intriguing story, btw.

    @Harlei! Yeesh! *blush* I need you to remove them both, as this is a G rated site. However, I do want to point out... that yes, there are places you can tighten, overall this is one of the best ones I've seen yet. Good job. I'm very impressed--especially as this is your first. Now, good grief, send me something G rated please. Eeep. :)

    @Caramelapplee--YES! YES! YES!!! This is amazing! I loved every second. IF you're reading this--go, everyone go, and read Caramel's entry. See how they use the Whoosh! At the beginning? Then slowly capture you with the exotic setting and practicing... only to hook you further with the prince at her door. Amazing. Perfect. Great job. :)

    @letsEscape--ooh! this one is strong too! very strong. My only advice would be to watch the overuse of the word 'I' Try and find other ways to say the same thing, without starting so many sentences with I. However, when you write in 1st person like that, you will find an excessive amount, so don't stress too much. Just think of replacing one or so each paragraph. :)

    (Okay, going to be getting to the others as I've got more time. Don't worry, I will comment on yours! :) )

    Jenni

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  37. I posted this before but the spacing was messed up and it was bothering me. So here it is again, fixed.

    Explosions lit up the night sky like fireworks. Gunfire filled the air. His heart was pounding and it felt like it was going to break free of his chest at any minute. He could see his target running to his jeep. Fleeing. The man lying beside him told him, “5 mile winds both here and there. You are a-go to take the shot.”

    Sam took a deep breath in through his nose and let it out through his mouth slowly. Licking his cracked lips, he found his target in his sights. He squeezed the trigger and felt the rifle kick in his hands. He closed his eyes, not wanting to see the damage he had done. Even though it was war, he still hated taking lives.

    The man beside him clapped him on the shoulder solemnly. “Come on Sammy, let’s get out of here. We’re done”

    Despite himself, Sam smiled. “Don’t call me Sammy.”

    “But you’re just a little, bitty boy.” Joel teased in a baby voice, rubbing Sam’s head in an affectionate gesture.

    Scowling at his friend, he replied with an indignant tone, “I am not! I’m a man!”

    Faking sympathy, Joel answered, “Whatever helps you sleep at night kid.” This was a running joke between them. Joel was 4 years older than Sam’s 20. Plus, it was unusual for such a young man to be as great of a sniper as he was. Normally, it took years of practice to get to Sam’s level but he seemed to have a natural talent for it.

    “Let’s just get out of here.” Sam grumbled and started gathering his weapon up.

    “Sounds like a plan.” Joel started gathering his supplies and putting them away as well. “Hey Sammy?”

    “Hmmm?” Sam turned to look at his friend questioningly, not bothering to comment on the name.

    “When we get back to base I challenge you to another game of poker.” He stated, grinning.

    “What are you trying to do? Loose more of your money to me?”

    “Nahh. I learn from my mistakes Sammy. You’re going to be broke by the time I get through with you.” Joel chuckled mischievously.

    “Well then it’s a good thing I’ve still got a couple tricks up my sleeve.” Sam grinned.

    Looking put out, Joel muttered “I’m sure you-”. He was stopped mid sentence by a bullet. Right through his neck.

    Everything stopped for Sam. Time didn’t seem to exist as he reached over and frantically tried to stop the bleeding. “It’s okay. Everything’s going to be fine. I’m right here.” He sobbed and stared down at his best friend. Using one hand he felt for a pulse and found nothing.


    Sam jolted up in his bed, wide awake. He was gasping for breath and he could feel tears sliding down his cheeks. Wiping his face clean with his arm, he collected himself. Normally, he didn’t dream of Joel. But when he did, it was terrible. That was the worst day of his life and he had locked it away inside, trying to forget and move on with his life. Rubbing his tired eyes, he looked at the clock on his bedside table. The numbers 4:57 glowed green and illuminated a small part of his room. Knowing he couldn’t go back to sleep after his nightmare, Sam stood up and stretched. He would be getting up in an hour or so anyways.

    Deciding to go for a run, he shuffled over to his closet and changed into his running clothes. Lacing up his shoes, he walked over to his bathroom and splashed water on his to wake him up. The water was running and he had both hands on either side of the sink, staring at his reflection.

    Golden blonde hair was plastered to his forehead from the water and grey eyes that seemed tired and sad stared back at him. He had a strong jaw and a straight aristocratic nose. Sam was often told he was good looking and he knew it was true, but was not conceited.

    Shaking himself out of his stupor, he switched the water off and went back into his room. After turning his alarm off on his clock, he jogged out of the house to start his run.

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  38. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  39. @ BrIgHtLiGhTs21

    Hey, looked at your beginning and just thought I'd show you how I'd fix it :). This is just how I think it could be.

    On a dark May night, Jennah Claire Avery died in a fire. Her house had somehow been caught in flames, and had burned down. At least that’s what everyone thought. There was no evidence that there had been anyone in the house, but only because all that had been left in the aftermath was ash. People accused Jennah of starting the fire. Others accused that she had killed herself. The only people that knew the truth were four people, yet they didn’t tell anyone, because if Jennah was really alive— she’d kill them.

    *A week before the fire*

    (After this, I'm a bit confused. Who's point of view is this? Most of the time, you're using third person, and at other times you're using first person.)

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  40. @ Carmelapplee Thank you!

    (It's kinda like I"m actually tell the story. Like a person that is seeing this happen is writing it down, if that makes sense)

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  41. On a dark May night, Jennah Claire Avery died in a fire. Her house had somehow been caught in flames, and had burned down. At least that’s what everyone thought. There was no evidence that there had been anyone in the house, but only because all that had been left in the aftermath was ash. People accused Jennah of starting the fire. Others accused that she had killed herself. The only people that knew the truth were four people, yet they didn’t tell anyone, because if Jennah was really alive— she’d kill them.

    *A week before the fire*
    Everyone Stop and stare, Look who’s coming, Jennah Avery’s, the it girl. Right now, Jennah is with Silver longhorn, she has the girl next door factor to her, and I guess that’s why Jennah likes her. Well, I don’t see anything similar between them, for example the way the look. Silver has straight black hair and pale white skin, her nickname is Snow white; Jennah has curly blonde hair and has tanned skin, her nickname is Barbie. Well, people call them that behind their backs, but never actually say it to their faces. Cowards.
    “So, S, you want to come over after school? I’m inviting everyone, you should come and get away from your parents,” Jennah said leaning on her locker trying to comfort Silver.
    “I-I don’t think so, Mom’s sort of trying to kill dad right now,” Silver laughed at her joke and Jennah gave her a sad smile
    “Okay, I guess we can hang out later” Jennah Shrugged getting her books from her locker.”I’ll tell you what you missed”
    Jennah gave Silver a kiss on the cheek and went on her way to find Hailey. Hailey Jane, was practically Jennah’s replica, but nicer then Jennah.
    “Hey Jennah,” Hailey said happily closing her locker,” How do you like my hair” Hailey had apparently added stripes in her hair, Black stripes.
    “Hailey, it’s awful why did you do that?” Jennah said just wanting to cause a fight,” I don’t think I can be seen with you, you look ridiculous”
    “B-But I though you would like it,” Hailey said frowning
    “Go skip school and get your hair fix” Jennah said walking away, she almost immediately found Trinity
    Trinity Taylor was the nerd of the group you could say, she was in almost every class getting A’s and B’s. She’s not the bad looking if you ask me. She has short red hair, and pale skin. She’s also the shortest one of the pack.
    “That wasn’t nice,” Trinity said crossing her arms
    “Trin, Hailey’s my friend, so if she has any hurt feelings she’ll come and tell me” Jennah smiled as Trinity walked with her,” Have you seen Krys at all?”
    “She’s sick today” Trinity tucked her hair behind her ear.
    Kyrstal Renee was always sick. No one knew, but she had cancer. She kept it a secret; let’s hope she can keep that secret from Jennah. We all know what Jennah does to secrets, she find them and holds them against that person. Jennah also has her own secrets, no one knows about. She believes there is nothing better than a lie, she’s was always fascinated by them.
    “Come on, Let go to class,” Trinity said pulling Jennah with her.

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  42. I was sitting in class when something my teacher said sparked my interest. Mrs. Hart was talking about a horse. A white mare that comes to earth once every year. A mare who leads horse thieves to their deaths. Who free the abused horses. Some say that she stays on earth with her herd. Even if she's a mare. Some say she roams the world and stay hidden and then come out and show the world that she's here. And some people say that the white mare's a myth. That she's not real. It's probably some random horse look a like and the deaths just happen to be a luck of karma.

    I snorted. The things people come with. If only they knew. If only they could see. It's right in their sight and they don't even think to see us. As much as they don't think many of these myths are fake. They're quite real alright. They just don't show themselves. The white mare is a rare species She's not just any typical mare. She's a unicorn. There's not many white horses out today. I look and look for some to try and re-populate some of them. I've looked almost everywhere around the world.

    The bell finally rang and I shoved all my stuff in my backpack and walked quickly out the door. Sighing I walked down the sidewalk towards my home. For some reason most so called myth creatures live longer than humans and animals. Our life span is tripled. It may seem like your ordinary 17 year old. No I've been alive for over 50 years. I've been to hundreds of schools. Too many to even think about counting. I'm rare. There's not many out there like me.

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  43. I'm not going to make this long. I just want to thank you cheese-ily for doing this for us all inexperienced writers. :)

    The beginning of my story:

    ‘Got to get away . . . Got to get away . . . Got to get away . . .’
    Cristy stumbled over the fallen brush and maneuvered around overgrown trees. Her back ached under the extra weight and her palms grew exceedingly sweaty. Her only thought was panic and panic only.
    ‘Not this time . . . They won’t get me this time . . .’
    Pushing herself to the limit, Cristy charged through the forest like a retreating soldier.
    ‘Huh?’
    Cristy slid in her tracks and stopped. A fallen tree lay in her path with a trunk so thick it stretched up to her shoulder. She panicked. What was she going to do?
    Behind her, the sounds of feet moving against the forest floor and men’s shouts reached her ears.
    ‘Dang it,’ she thought.
    Cristy turned back and faced the trees behind her. With quick movements, she reached into her pocket and wield a six inch pocketknife. She was ready. No turning back now.
    Letting her breath slow, she stayed very still and made sure she could hear the trampling of leaves and men’s voices. They sounded angry . . . really angry. There were no other sounds in the forest besides those that were following and her steady breath.
    ‘Come on . . .’ she thought boldly and got in a readied position. ‘No more running.’
    The steps grew nearer and nearer and the voices were becoming easier to depict. Cristy knew who they were and (more importantly) knew why they had come.
    They had come for her.

    My family says it's great but they always say that so I can never be sure. I don't really feel like it really there. Oh well. What are first drafts for? :)

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  44. I'm sorry I forgot to mention the name. *slaps myself in the face in real life* Whoops.

    It's called "The Perilous Secret"

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  45. Thank you Jenni :)
    Yay competion that I can enter :D

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  46. Hey Jenny, I'm new to writing and I only discovered that I love writing a few weeks ago...so, like you might guessed I started writing...I'm not sure where I'm gonna put my work, but I'm looking at this website, Wattpad.com.

    So Here's the beginig of my first boook ever!!!! I'm sure are excited about it!
    PS- Love your lessons...wait did I use 'your' right? I think I did *blushes*

    Chapter 1- The Nerd's Diary's


    Prom night…an enchanting, special night for a girl…right? Well not for me… I’ve been worrying about the prom for the last month, and now it’s only four weeks, till the delightful night.
    I sighed, for me: delightful night….NOT
    Yeah, I know, I know…you’re probably saying, why am I so alarmed…I mean I can just stay home and watch Titanic or something…well the truth is, I really want to go…like I extremely want to go….and I would die if my friends would come back from the prom and start blabbing, about how wicked it was.
    But there’s one little problem... oh who am I kidding? It’s a huge problem! You see, I have no date, which is so not wicked! I mean, my two besties- Tiffany and Morgan got asked out more than twice!
    Wicked!
    Gosh, I just love that word. So, there’s this guy, that I really like, but he never even noticed me....Anyhow…Tiff and Morg- my nicknames for them- been trying to make me go ask him to the prom. But, isn’t it a guy who asks the girl out to the prom, in the sick, mushy romance novels that Morgan reads non-stop. Like she’s not a ‘nerd’ like me, but she just love the books, that involve bad language, sex, drugs and other things that are really not suitable for her, seeing that she’s not even eighteen yet.
    “Nicole, wipe that smug look of your face…it’s not the end of the world,” Spoke, the romance novel rat, Morgan.
    She was lying beside’s me on her stomach with a new romance book in front of her.

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  47. :( You guys. I'd just finished commenting on everyone when I accidentally refreshed the page and lost all the comments, before I posted them. :( :( :( I'm super bummed right now. And tired. I promise to do them all again in the morning. So, so, sorry! :(

    Jenni

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  48. @Jenni you're a little late! u still haven't responded to my beginning....... :( :( :( *fake tear* *fake sob* jk jk but could u try to get to it soon????? PLEASE????????

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  49. @Septiria… I really like this—but I’d like to see her get the letter first. Tearing it open with shaking hands… then reading. Gives us a bit right before we see her reaction. Other than that it was really strong.

    @shugarkitty… This is an interesting concept. Makes you wonder if she’s a good guy or a bad guy. You want to have the number a lot less… since that’s more people than are on earth now. Perhaps more than have ever lived on earth. *grins* So think something more like, in the six figured number so it’s more believable… also look at simplifying what you’ve written. Explain it all in about 3-4 sentences. Does that make sense? Don’t tell us too much at the beginning you really want to keep your reader interested, so remember to intrigue them.

    @lovingmylife… this is incredible. Give me more. I want to know what she’s feeling, hearing, smelling. Each emotion. I’m not sure if this is the first chapter or not… but if she’s so in love with him, slow it down just a bit and let me live the moments he’s with her.

    @Tessa… I love this story and idea. What I’d like to see more of are action tags. Show me what the speakers are doing. Are they in the hospital room? Have them touch the side of the bed. Run their hands through their hair… cross their legs nervously. Look down at the medical documents on the chair next to them. Something. Give me a bit more visual to help place them in the room more. Great Dialogue. 

    Chloe… Yours needs a lot more paragraphs in it. So I would break it up, like this:

    The water crashed against the rugged rocks below me, the noise deafening as a clash of thunder sounded above us.

    The figure beside me flinched as a streak of silver flashed across the dangerously angry sky and shot through the grey clouds, like an arrow slicing through an unsuspecting heart. The jagged rocks beneath my bare feet shifted slightly, the world beneath us rumbling and shaking. My shaky hands gripped onto the cliff’s edge, my stomach rolling like a sneaker in a washing-machine while the person beside me continued to stare at the hundred foot drop below us unaffected by the raging storm and pelting rain.

    Opening my mouth to warn the person of another onslaught of rain, the air rushed out of me and a small push from the glaring wind sent me tittering towards the edge. I hemmed and hawed at the edge, loose boulders falling to their deaths while I stared at the drop with wide eyes.

    Time seemed to suspend then, the misty air clearing enough for me to make out the outcropped rocks at the bottom of the drop. My foot nudged a little closer to the edge, my heart beating wildly in my chest while my stomach threatened to cough up its contents. I held my breath as my hand grasped for a piece of the uneven wall but only finding air.

    Thoughts wild with splatters of blood and crushed bones, I turned to the figure for help only to find bright violet eyes staring back at me with an unknown emotion.

    I begged the figure for help, my mouth no longer able to host coherent words but the stranger just blinked, eyes turning back to an ordinary blue before it held out a steady hand for me to take. As my fingers brushed the stranger’s, I realised it was too late. My feet had already lost all grips and before I could scream, I was tumbling off the edge and into the unknown.

    Some of this is a bit wordy as well.. but at least it can give you an idea of paragraph placement. Also Hemmed and Hawed usually means, thinking about something before you do it… so perhaps you meant teetered? Not sure. Anyway, this concept is really good.


    Okay. Here’s the first batch again. I’m so sorry guys. Been busy out of my mind. Gonna try and get the last group up later this evening.  Jenni

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  50. @Jenni Thanks for the advice. I tried my best to apply. There’s the second version. This better????


    Somewhere Only We Know



    Chapter One



    “How is he?” the middle aged women shoot out of her hospital lobby chair faster than a writer to paper when they get a stroke of inspiration. She’d been waiting all day for the news.
    
“He should be ok in a few days expect-”
    “Except what?!?!?” she asked before the young doctor could finish, still shaken. 
Then she looks around realized she’d yelled it louder than she intended.
    “From some memory loss.”
 He breathed, knowing that breaking the news to a mother wasn’t going to easy… Med school doesn’t prepare you for everything.
    “Some? How much?”

    “He won’t be able to remember his childhood.” 

    “Any of it?” 
Her thin brown eyebrows shoot up, not wanting to believe it.
    “Well, you see memory is tricky. He’ll remember anything that’s been relevant to him in the last four years.”
    
“What does that mean?”
 She shook her head. She hadn’t waited all night to just get more confused.
    “For example He’ll remember you’re his mother because he’s thought, talked, and seen you in the past four years.” When the woman didn’t respond right away and kept staring off into the distance, he added, “Right?”
    “Yes, Yes.” She quickly responded, looking back at him, focusing. “Nolan was busy at college but not that busy… I’m just worried. Will he ever remember?”
    “That’s tough, most of the blow from the car crash was on this head…”
 The doctor looked down, knowing that all of the answers won’t be on the paper.
    “What should I do? He was just coming to visit for the summer, now that he’s just graduated.”
 She pushed back her hair though it’s so short that it returns to its old position right afterwards.
    “Over the next few weeks, show him pictures, tell him stores. If he’s still in touch with some of his high school friends, maybe see if they could talk to him. It’s not an exact science remembering. Usually memories are attached to a feeling, that’s what makes us remember certain things, but not others. Maybe if you can recreate that same feeling, he’ll remember? Was there anyone he was particularly close to in high school? Middle school? Elementary?”
    
She sighed, knowing that it’d come up eventually. “Yes, the girl across the street, Josie Coleman. They were inseparable until… Well, I don’t know what happened really. I was working a lot after the divorce. But they had some sort of fallout. It was like one day, best friends, then the next she won’t talk to him. He must have gone over to her house a million times, but she’d never come out to talk to him.”
 She put her hand on forehead but she didn’t have a head ache…yet.
    “Well I suggest, you find this girl, she’s his best chance at remembering.”
 He reclicked his pen closed.
    “What am I supposed to say? Oh hi, I’m Nolan Logan’s mom, do you remember me? Well Nolan doesn’t remember you because he was in a car accident while going out to get me some groceries. Would you like to come help him remember?” Though her tone was sarcastic, her face was anything but joking.
    
“What you say is up to you. All I’m saying is, if he doesn’t remember everything in the next three months, it’s likely he’ll go his whole life without a childhood.” The doctor didn’t want to have to break it to her but directly was always the way to go he found. He sighed and walked off to see another patient.
    
Mona looked over at her 22-year-old son, dark black hair like his father and brown-eyed. Would all the work she’d done, raising him, be for nothing?

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  51. @Sarah… Interesting. Great use of action tags, dialogue, and placement. I didn’t feel bogged down. I loved all the different ways you showed your characters like waiting to speak until he swallowed… great visualization. I would’ve like to have seen it a bit more urgent and catchy from the start, but all in all, strong writing. 

    @Kara… I remember seeing this before you changed the spacing. Wow! It’s amazing what spacing does to a story. I really like this one. Way to jolt the reader as well. You feel instantly sympathetic with the main character, which really gives it a nice punch when the other guy dies and then he wakes up. Nicely done.

    @iwuvjalapeno… this concept is totally unique. A girl who’s a unicorn. Nice. I’m curious to see what happens to this story. What I’d like to see more in this beginning is more of the girl’s snark. More disbelief at the way she’s being portrayed. Like almost a light mocking of the teacher, straight away. Remember your readers are smart, you don’t have to tell us the whole backstory. Just jump us in there. We’ll catch up. The less we know of why she’s an expert there at the beginning the more intriguing it will be as we continue to read.

    @Monica… This is an awesome story idea. I love it. What I’d do at the beginning to really make it sharp is keep it concise. Stick with Run! Run! Run! Or even, Go! Go! Go! When we’re running and scared we only say one word and over again. Now, I love that she’s going to take them all on… but you’re going to have to give me a reason why she didn’t run around the log or try to jump over it. Maybe it’s haunted or dark, or magic… Perhaps even have her try to climb over, and by time she realizes she can’t, they’re too close.

    @Sam… I love, love, love this story idea. Of course, I love all sorts of romantic high school books. Even though your first chapter isn’t perfect (see my first lesson to understand more) it’s still a great start for a first time writer. Go ahead and finish your story, then after seeing all the lessons, you can begin to edit it, bit by bit. All stories have to be revised a ton of times anyway. This is just making it easy. 

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  52. Thanks for the advice to both the authors! I'll get right to work! :)

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  53. Thanks for the advice Jenni! I have no idea why the paragraph came out all scrunched up like that; it was put out in proper paragraphs. It might have been the way I copied and pasted it. Sorry about that. And yes, I'm known to be a little wordy sometimes. Sometimes I just want to get as much info in there that it just over flows. I'll work on it.
    - Chloe.

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  54. FROM: Live-Laugh-Love

    Chasing Kaitlin--Chapter One

    They're not looking at me. They're not looking at me. They are not looking at me!

    Kaitlin picked up her pace to her locker with her head downcast. She could feel her heart beating loudly within her chest, and the heat of embarrassment practically burned at her fair cheeks. It felt as if it were one of those crazy dreams when you accidently go to school in just your underwear, but without the underwear, just ugly clothes.

    She could only blame one person for how she looked and felt right now . . .

    Him.

    One of her hands was clenched in a fist, while the other clutched her backpack on her shoulders. The bottoms of her soaking wet sneakers made squeaking noises with every move she would make, drawing even more unwanted attention to herself.

    At the sight of her royal blue locker not too far in front of her, she beamed widely and practically began running. She opened it hurriedly and stuck her head inside, ignoring the black-haired girl beside her, who was putting finishing touches on her make-up. Maybe if she just stayed quiet, Madison wouldn't even bother talking to her.

    Yeah, right.

    "What are you wearing?" Maddi asked with a drop of disgust, as her locker shut with a loud click. Kaitlin could hear the pop as she smacked her lips to probably spread her freshly applied lip gloss.

    Kaitlin groaned and answered disgruntled, "Clothes."

    Even if she couldn't see Madison's face, she knew she was being given her trademark eye roll. "Obviously, I can see that. Now, seriously! What in the world are you wearing?"

    Giving a loud huff, Kaitlin popped her head out of her locker to reveal her messily applied make-up and terribly done hair. She simply narrowed her eyes and stuck her head back in her locker, rummaging for her books for her first period.

    "You look like you had a shopping spree at the salvation army! Wha-what happened?" Maddi's overly concerned voice just made Kaitlin chuckle. She always made such a big deal out of such tiny things, like boys, clothes, popularity. That was just typical Madison.

    But immediately, any sign of mirth on Kaitlin's features fell when she recalled what happened. Grimacing, she slammed her locker shut with a bang and leaned against it, hugging her massive history book to her chest. "Take a wild guess," she deadpanned, throwing her head back in exasperation.

    She watched as a dignified smirk slid across Maddi's cherry glossed lips. "So, Nick strikes again, huh?"

    Kaitlin gritted her teeth and scowled, "I swear, if I didn't have to get penalized for it, I'd kill that jerk in a second."

    "Don't scowl," Maddi informed, "you'll get wrinkles."

    Kaitlin returned with her own eye roll. "Whatever you say, Nacho."

    Madison sneered at the sound of her old time nickname and threw daggers at Kaitlin from her eyes. "How many times do I have to tell you guys not to call me that? I mean, sure, it was all cute until the second grade. Now it just makes me seem like a pig who loves eating!"

    Kaitlin shot her a satisfied grin. "Don't scowl," she mocked, "you'll get wrinkles."

    "Oh, shut up," she shouted, before folding her arms over her chest. "At least I'll look decent for group pictures."

    "What?!?"

    --

    And that's the end of that. Well, actually there was another good 2 and 1/2 pages of chapter one. Hahaha. So how was it? Is there anyway I can add a little more punch? And I just realized both our characters have the same name. [Madison] ^^; Sorry 'bout that:P

    Oh! And I just got Pride&Popularity on my Kindle app on my phone, so now I can read it for the bizillionith time xD

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  55. @Live-Love-Laugh... You're a very strong writer! I was hooked from the beginning. However, I was a bit confused with Madison. I thought she was a mean girl at first and didn't realize she was the BFF. So you might want to add a bit there. Also, in your opening you have it burning *at* her cheeks. Change the at to *on* Otherwise, well done! I think it's wonderful!
    Jenni

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  56. I don't know whether to put the prologue, or the first chapter. I'll settle on the prologue.

    I wrapped my jacket around my quivering body. My clothes were drenched, and the short black locks of my hair dripped rain water across my face and onto the ground. Dark, stormy clouds overshadowed the big city of New York. People passed me as if I weren't there. My abhorrence grew stronger for the citizens. What was wrong with the world? Didn't people care about a teenage boy sitting on the sidewalk, alone, with no family or home?

    I wanted to call out for help, but I couldn't. No, I would never expose my voice again. I would never speak a word again. That voice of mine, it ruined my life.

    My body began shaking, and I wrapped my jacket around myself more tightly. Rain slapped the ground at a steady pace; it seemed to be singing a song to me. My eyes wandered a little, watching all the nebulous figures of kids and adults run to shelter before they were cursed with the cold. But no one took the time to stop and give me a curious glance, a hand of help. I didn't even mind some pity. Just someone to pay attention to me.

    The world seemed too busy for me. They all turned their backs when I had pleaded for help. Their cold stares, their hurtful words, or worse, the ignorance I always received as if I were invisible. I dropped my head to my knees.

    I just wanted attention, but no one cared. I had no friends, no teachers to help, no family members to see. And even if I did, what was I suppose to say? I was a quiet kid who despised his voice.

    There was no denying the truth:

    I am alone.

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  57. Guitarboy: "Do you think we've ever met?"

    Pirate Queen: "Who knows :)"

    "Sammy, come down and finish your breakfast!" Grandpa shouted from down the hall.

    "I'm coming!" she yelled back, twice as loud.

    Pirate Queen: "Got to go or I'll be late for school :s"

    Guitarboy: "Now we can't have that or you might even get detention :O :p "

    Pirate Queen: "So far I've been detention free :D"

    Guitarboy: "A pirate that has never been in detention??? I'm shocked :O Where is your inner rebel"

    Pirate Queen: "I'm letting my inner rebel skip breakfast so I can talk to you"

    Guitarboy: "Damn, you always say the sweetest things, not fair"

    "Sammy, don't make me throw out that computer," Someone whispered in her ear. She yelped and nearly jumped out of her chair in surprise.

    "Grandpa, I said I was coming." He looked at her and raised his brows.

    "I'll believe it when I see it," he rolled his eyes. His granddaughter thought he was stupid or something. Teenagers these days.

    "You know, breakfast is the most important meal of the day," They said in unison.

    Sammy let out a deep sigh. "I know grandpa." It's not like he doesn't tell her every day.

    "Now come on or you'll be late for school." He stood there waiting for her to get up and leave her computer behind. She didn't move. His eyebrows rose as if trying to ask her what she was waiting for.

    "Let me just say goodbye first," she exclaimed. She grunted in annoyance at her grandpa and turned back to her computer. Doesn't he understand how chat works; you can't just go offline without saying goodbye. That would be so rude. She heard him leave her bedroom and could have sworn she heard him mumble something about the youth these days. A tiny smile spread on her face. Sometimes she just loved to behave like a real teenager just to get him riled up a bit. While this little teenage behavior was going on, her Guitarboy had continued writing.

    Guitarboy: "You really shouldn't skip breakfast, it's the most important meal :)"

    Urgh. Not him too. When did everyone suddenly become a nutritionist?

    Guitarboy: "My queen :p you there??"

    Guitarboy: "You left for school yet?"

    Guitarboy: "????????"

    See this is why you can't just leave without saying goodbye.

    Guitarboy: "Don't leave me :p"

    Pirate Queen: "Sorry, school is calling, or more like grandpa is calling :)"

    Guitarboy: "I'm gonna miss you today :( Can't you skip school, so we can talk :D"

    Pirate Queen: "How tempting as that sounds, I can't :("

    "Samantha Claire Thomson, don't make me come back in your room! Breakfast now!" He sounded like he could explode at any moment. Gone was the sweet grandpa and out came the military background.

    Pirate Queen: "And I'm out! Talk ya later x"

    Guitarboy: "Have fun at school :p Bye x"

    She quickly closed her laptop, grabbed her schoolbag from her bed and dashed out of the room down the hall towards the kitchen. The kitchen reminded her so much of her mother. She particularly loved the beige cabinets with the stenciled light pink flowers on it. Her mother and she did those together, however you could very easily see which were hers, 'cause she forgot to stencil the leaves green. So now they had two cabinets with total pink flowers on it.

    It's not just that. The kitchen holds so much memories of her mother. Mom loved to bake, so the house was pretty much always filled with the smell of fresh baked goodies. Her chocolate chip cookies were to die for; too bad she could never taste those again. But Sam would gladly give up all the chocolate chip cookies in the world, just to see her mom here once again.

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  58. I only just found your website and so far your lessons have been really helpful :)
    The post above is only a little part of the first chapter, 'cause that was all I could post in the comment box ^^)
    Hope you like and I'm very curious about your opinion!

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  59. HI!

    I sat in a room, it was all white, yet I somehow keep my sanity. Well, what's left of it, I've been in here for days. My Mother put me in here; she said I will be stuck in here until she found a asylum she thinks would be best for me. My mother says I have Anorexia, Congenital Analgesia (Where A person doesn't feel pain), Histrionic Personality (A personality disorder characterized by a pattern of excessive emotionality and attention-seeking, including an excessive need for approval and inappropriately seductive behavior.), and Pathological Lying. I don't know what half that is, how can I be something I don't even know about?
    I started scratching my eye, but I didn't stop, I kept doing it. I didn't feel it at all, so I scratched harder and harder. I look at my hands; I couldn't help but scream. My hands were bloody. So, so, so bloody. I started rubbing off the blood on the wall, still screaming. I kept on wiping the blood of my face and onto the walls. I can only see Blood and white, I start feeling dizzy, tired, and as if I was going to pass out.
    I heard someone come into the room, “It’ll be okay, Sydney, It'll be okay" I heard my mother’s voice. Then I close my eyes," Don't worry, Sydney, You’re going to a place that will help you. It's called Kingston Row, When you wake up you'll be there"
    I slowly drift to sleep, why can't I stay at home? Why do I have to go to Kingston Row? ..............

    HailZ

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  60. The toys that littered the ground revealed everything. But it wasn't just the toys. It was also the graham crackers smashed in the carpet and the spilled milk dripping off the table. The television in the corner of the room was blaring some t.v. show off of Nickelodeon. I scanned the room hoping that I would spot at least one of the culprits responsible for this mess but room was messy.

    This is just great. I leave the room to take one simple phone call and this is what happens. I was gone for five minutes and the Morsley twins managed to tear the room apart. My first babysitting job and I was not going to leave a good impression.

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  61. Hi Miss. Jenni! This is the prologue to a story that I dreamt up a year ago. It's called House Of Riders. I hope you enjoy the prologue!

    Prologue
    “ The Queen has arrived,” was whispered all along the maternity ward. The shrieks and cries of a lone woman had Queen Sophia, or Queen Wisdom as she was called, quicken her steps. By the door a handmaiden awaited the Queen.
    “ I am regretfully sorry Your Highness but no one is allowed to enter the room besides family.” The handmaiden calmly told her.
    “ She has no family besides me so let my through.” Sophia said as she punctuated her words. Using her ‘royal’ voice, the handmaiden had no choice but to obey as she stepped aside to let the Queen through.
    As she entered the room she found it to be tremendously hot. Re-focusing, she found the figure of her best friend laying, withering, in the only bed. With pain in her eyes the Queen made her way to Charlotte.
    “ Lot! Lot I’m here. You wanted to speak to me.” The Queen whispered. Despite the pain that Charlotte was going through she managed to look into the eyes of Sophia. Just Sophia, not a Queen before it, just her best-friends’ name.
    “ Phia, I won’t make the birth and you know it. Please make me a promise. Promise me that you’ll look after my chiLLLLDD!!!” She screeched as the worst possible pain tore through her.
    “ Promise me!” She hissed as she was told to push for the last time.
    Pushing with all her might Charlotte brought to the land of Maïï a beautiful baby girl. The minute she was pulled from her mothers’ womb the child let out a cry so loud it left a ringing sensation in the ears of all present. After that one cry the child opened her lovely lapis lazuli eyes as if in wonder of the world she had reached, her eyes changing as the emotions fleeted through the child’s mind. Holding out her arms, the baby was laid in Charlottes’ arms. Her eyes already drifting shut she heard the faint echo of an, “ I promise.” Upon hearing this Charlotte gave a tired sort of smile and the name “Sasha,” was the last thing anyone ever heard from the dying women’s lips. It was also the first and last time anyone had seen the strong and wise Queen cry.
    So from that day forth the Queen graced Faye with many royal children but among them was a very special little girl. Her name was Sasha.

    I hope you like it!
    Bye!

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  62. Okay, now this is a mini first chapter of a book I didn't even post yet on Wattpad. Hopefully you'll enjoy it, and I haven't made too many grammar/spelling errors. Can you, maybe, give me feed back. You don't have to but I really want your thoughts on it. Soon, hopefully I will finish the chapter.

    The Power of Pizza and Love

    "A great man once said 'In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years.' Sometimes, thought, it's hard to live up to that saying, when all you do is make pizza's for a living." I said abruptly, making Celeb laugh.

    "Gwen you have to realize that to live your life, you've got to be happy and actually like what you do in life." Celeb said making me laugh.

    "Who did you rip that quote off of." I asked, then chuckling to myself, "and what makes you think I like making pizza's everyday. Wait no, scratch that, box pizza's, because your afraid I will give food poisoning to the customers."

    "First, I have not ripped that quote off from anyone, or anyone I can think of at the moment anyway." He continued. "And second, you will give food poisoning because that last time you tried cooking, you end up with burned toast, and nearly caught the kitchen on fire." He pointed out.

    "I was six, and hungry. Ten years later and you still think I can't operate a microwave." I said raising my eyebrows in his direction.

    "No, I know you can't operate a microwave." Celeb said as he finished boxing the pizza.

    "One time, it was one time" I said, raising up my arms and waving them in the air, to exaggerate my point. "You blow it out of proportion."

    Celeb laughed at me once more, before carrying on in silence, and I finished, putting them on the counter and grabbing my keys.

    "Where are you going?" Celeb asked, before I walked out of the store.

    "Out, I'm going to go grab a cheese cake from the bakery." I answered.

    "Get me one please!" He whinnied making me roll my eyes at the blue eyed freak flapping his arms in the air like I was doing before.

    "No, get yourself your own." I said selfishly grinning at his annoyance.

    "At least deliver the pizza's!" He said sighing, pointing towards the pizza's that where on the counter.

    "No, it's your turn." I said sticking my tongue at him, before laughing evilly and walking out of the store as he flipped me off through the glass window separating us.

    ***

    That's it so far. :)

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  63. The smell of rain reeks even without the hint of paint as it is splattered across the front of the building. News anchors appear, surrounding the scene as police try to block of the creepy red writing that embellishes the school: ‘I never was, but am always to be. No one ever saw me, nor ever will. And yet I am the confidence of all, to live and breathe on this world. I am what no one else can be. The one and only.’ It said in small red letters as thick bolded red letters lay below: ‘I’m not broken, but you can’t fix me.’
    Bitter chills run up my spine as I shake away the eerie feeling running through my mind and dig through my thin jean pockets for the newspaper clipping. “The Fall of Hillcrest High” was boldly noted across the top of the article following with the picture of the school during the spring. In a sub title it has a picture of a young looking man staring blankly at the camera in a school photo with a small summary: Terry Jones caught for beating up other students, disappears from hospital when they find something strange inside him. It was for this reason I decided to attend this school, and as the red paints drips to the ground, I begin to have second thoughts.

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Tell it like it is! :)