Monday, September 20, 2010

The First 250 Words of Star Swans and Sarki

So, I entered the first sentence of STAR SWANS AND SARKI in a contest a little while back, not really thinking much of it. I entered because the agent giving out page critiques for prizes, Natalie Fischer, is on that list of lovely people I intend to query when I feel my manuscript is ready. However, my first sentence isn't totally amazing. I feel like it's a great opening for my story, but that's something a reader would realize later on (kind of like the cover art for WHEN YOU REACH ME, only not so much).

In fact, I've been in a bit of a funk over the story since I realized I cut too much information from the beginning a couple of weeks ago. I don't want to put the parts I cut back in, so now I'm coming up with ways to show the information (which is going to take my word count back up). I've decided I need a ghost scene near the beginning. *grins* I love what I've been playing with because it involves one of my favorite characters. The character doesn't have a big role in the story because he stays behind to take care of their home, but he's important to the main character. This scene would show how they interact and keep my readers from being confused about the ghosts. I hope.

I'm feeling better about the story again (now that I have a solution), and my first sentence is a finalist over on Elle's blog. You can click here to read my first 250 words in her comments section, if you're interested. And you can laugh at the fact that it took me three times to post my entry without errors. ;)

Also, if you have a book on pacing you'd like to recommend, I'd be grateful. It's something I'd like to focus on this revision. Thanks!  


  1. Well, you got me interested! I want to know what she knows...and how she knows it.


  2. Congratulations, Myrna. I like your first sentence. It's descriptive and colorful, as is the rest of the 250. I'm curious about the world :-)

  3. Myrna, I did this exact thing with Trinket. I needed that opening to shine, and it didn't. And I felt like I was telling about something in a backstory kind of way, so I changed where the story opened and put the reader right in the middle of the scene I'd kept alluding to.

    Oh, the tinkering we do!


  4. Oh, revising is so painful. One of the best "craft" books I've found for revising is THE FIRST FIVE PAGES by Noah Lukeman. Highly recommended!

  5. Congrats on being a finalist, and good luck! I made it to the finals, too, so I'll cross my fingers for both of us. :)

    And good luck on your rewrite. I hope all goes well!

  6. Congratulations, Myrna. Your sentence evokes a beautiful image. Good luck! (And good luck to you, too, Shallee:) )

  7. I think that opener is really good! Very vivid and you establish the relationship between them. Congratulations on being a finalist!

  8. 1. Congratulations!

    2. LOVE the spooky new look :)

    3. I really like the first sentence, particularly the part before the comma. A period could go right there; I think it's be pretty :) No, seriously, it presents an interesting image and brings up all kinds of tantalizing questions. Good luck!

  9. I think your first sentence is especially good because it doesn't use any shocker statements. It just is intriguing by itself. Your description is awesome-I could really see the orchard and the path and Lani asleep in the tree. Really good, Myrna. I hope you win.