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Stories! > A Summer's Place

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message 1: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Enjoy! I comment and tell me how you like it, what could be better, and corrections. Thank you!


message 2: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Chp 1

I snapped my eyes open. The alarm clock was buzzing loudly. I snuggled deeper in the covers. It was a Saturday after all.

Then I realized something very important. God allowed me to live another day. That was one of the many things I was grateful for.

I said a prayer in my head, "Thank you, God"

Yep that's it. I don't say long prayers because usually I'll forget what I said in the first place. That's what I get confused about the most. Why do people say long prayers? That was the question for the day.

Since summer vacation started today, I might as well keep my mind sharp and focused each day. I really didn't want to end up like the NFT's who constantly spend the day on their phones. I promise you, sometimes I could see drool building up on the corners of their lips. It's disgusting. I shudder.

I glanced at my black alarm clock and the time was 5:18 a.m. I couldn't help but groan. My goal was to wake up at four, but it looks like I slept through that alarm.

Man, it sure is cozy under here. Well . . . maybe a couple more hours wouldn't hurt. I closed my eyes and drifted off to sleep.


message 3: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Ooh! I'm excited to see where you take this!


message 4: by Emily (new)

Emily   Lorien wrote: "Chp 1

I snapped my eyes open. The alarm clock was buzzing loudly. I snuggled deeper in the covers. It was a Saturday after all.

Then I realized something very important. God allowed me to live an..."


I Love it!!! cant wait to read more :)


message 5: by lorien (last edited Jul 16, 2016 03:08PM) (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
A Summer's Place
Chp 2

I stood in a meadow lined with grass and every kind of flower ever thought of. Flowers aren't really my thing. Give me a packet of chocolates any day but flowers . . .I would kindly refuse. Sure, flowers are beautiful but I won't deny that I'd rather have chocolates.

I walked down along a road and came across my old school. I had to stifle down a laugh. What was it doing here? Better question: what was I doing here?

This was unlike any dream I came across in my recent fourteen years of age.

As if trying to wake me up, the ground was shaking madly. I lost my balance and stumbled.

My old school came crashing down until it was nothing but rubble. I ran. Maybe not the best move since if this was real life I would break a bone. But I continued on running. I looked back behind me and saw a pair of warm brown eyes staring at me.

I gasped then choked. I knew those eyes. I saw them once a week. Maybe one day I'll tell you, but for now I won't. I haven't told anyone. What makes you think I'll start now?

I ran and ran. My legs didn't feel tired and my lungs felt as though I was walking.

The ground continued to shake and I was soon falling down in a hole screaming my head off.


***
"Am-ber," a soft voice kept on repeating and gave me an occasional nudge. "Am-ber."

Whoever it was he or she shook me with great force. I had to keep myself from laughing. It was my brother, Fico. He usually did this when I wasn't up.

He doesn't know but every time he attempts to wake me up, I'm already awake.

"Amber!" Fico half yelled.

Now you see that's what got me fully awake. I sat straight up from my bed.

My brother just laughed. "Good morning sleeping beauty."

I scowled. "Good morning, yourself."

"You should get up now. It's eleven, now in case you were wondering. Mother wanted me to make sure you were still breathing."

"Ha ha very funny." I moved to the right and checked my clock. Sure enough it was eleven. I groaned again that morning. It seems to be a habit of mine.

"Mother's making pancakes. I suggest you hurry up and get dressed otherwise you won't have any for yourself," Fico walked out the door but stopped. "Did you dream about the NFT's?"

"No,why?" Wasn't sure where this was going.

"You mumbled in your sleep and said 'I must have it. How could I live with myself if I don't have it'" Fico said. I could tell he was trying to keep himself from laughing.

"I didn't, and I don't plan on dreaming about one anytime soon." I said, getting off of my bed.

"Whew! I thought I was going to have to deal with you moaning throughout the whole day."

"Where did you figure that?" I asked, grabbing a flannel t-shirt and jeans from my closet.

"Well for one thing you have deep circles under your eyes and for another you look like you want to throw something at me."

"I do. But I won't waste my energy on throwing a pillow on your delicate head." I walked out of my room and down the hallway.

"Wait. Who said I was delicate? I don't remember father or mother telling me or the others." Fico followed me to the bathroom.

"You might not remember, but I do." Now it was my turn to hold back a laugh.

"I'll leave you to change. But remember, this conversation isn't over." He said walking down the stairs, with a smile.

I entered our bathroom and changed. The flannel t-shirt I was wearing is my favorite. It had mint and white on it (two of my favorite colors) and was glad my mother bought it for me.

Once I got my jeans on, I brushed my hair and pushed a bobby pin in to hold my bangs.

I looked in the mirror and saw how long my hair grew during school. It came all the down my back. I should cut it soon. I didn't want my hair to fly all over the place if our family went on trips or stuff like that.

I walked out of the bathroom and threw my bed clothes down the laundry shoot. That was the nice thing in living in an old house. You get to have little bonuses like a shoot.

I walked down the stairs and prepared myself for the firing squad.


message 6: by lorien (last edited Jul 16, 2016 08:21PM) (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
A Summer's Place

Chp 3

Okay so maybe it wasn't a firing squad but it sure did come awfully close to one.

As I went down the stairs, I could hear the laughter of the twins echoing through the walls. They're a year older than me. The twins both have brown hair and hazel colored eyes while I have auburn hair and blue eyes. Some people ask if we're really related and we answer back to them with a smile.

There are benefits to being the third oldest. I usually don't get bothered all that much but every once in a while the twins would concoct some sort of prank. It makes everyone laugh in the end but.......I would just stay your distance away from them if I were you.

My mother's pancakes smelled up the whole house and would probably be the best you ever have, in fact her pancakes are so good that we don't even order pancakes from the restaurant any more ,and that's saying something.

Fico wasn't joking. The pancakes were suppose to be stacked high on a single plate like all the other mornings but today, it's half way gone.

"Morning sweety," my mother called from the kitchen. "You better stock up on these pancakes otherwise you'll have an empty stomach." She was busy. Flipping over pancakes, mixing and pouring, and taking measures. She was all over the place. My mother was definitely a multi tasker.

"Yeah, Amber. Better get them while their hot because their going out like hotcakes." Meet Frida. One of the twins I mentioned earlier. Her twin, my brother, is Dimitri.

Landing right on cue Dimitri snorted at her joke. There were times where I wanted to throw one of mother's oh so good pancakes at them. But I know I shouldn't.

I grabbed a plate and piled on three pancakes. I drizzled the maple syrup and put a big spoonful of homemade whip cream. Mother's whip cream makes you not want to buy grocery whip cream ever again.

I found a place on the wooden dining table and pulled out my chair. I set down my plate and ran back in the kitchen to grab some untensils. I nearly stumbled on poor Dingis ,our husky, as I ran in the kitchen. I fumbled for forks and knives, knowing that the twins would take my food if I didn't get there in time.

Hm. Maybe I should have a surprise waiting for the twins.

Usually I'm not the trickster in the family, I leave that up to the twins, but maybe there should be change.

I searched the kitchen cabinets for something that would add some spice.

Think, think. What would pack a punch?

I scooted away the bottles and came across cayenne pepper. Yes, this would work.

I poured some in the palm of my hand.

"Wow Amber this pancake sure is delicious! Wish you could have some." said Frida, sounds of her scarfing down another pancake.

I got what I needed and almost sprinted around the corners. I got there right on time. Swiftly and secretly, I sprinkled all of the cayenne pepper on all of the pancakes.

Frida quickly grabbed my pancake and dangled it above her mouth.

Yes. She grabbed the one that had the most cayenne on it. The plan was in full swing now.

She looked at me and laughed. "Sorry little sister but you got here too slow. Sure beated all your other records though. I think as a reward for your tremendous effort you should eat it. But seeing that I licked it . . . I own it."

I searched her face. Seeing if she was joking or actually telling the truth. You couldn't tell sometimes with the twins.

"Relax. I'll give it to you on the condition that you do my chores for the rest of the week."

"Why would I agree to that? I could always grab more later."

"That's true," Frida said, tilting here head slightly so the sun could reflect her brown hair to a brilliant gold. "But there isn't any more whip cream left and we all know how much you love mother's whip cream. So what'll it be? To refuse or not refuse that is the question."

I really loved mother's whip cream but was it really worth it? Just one pancake covered in goodness for a week's worth of chores. Nope it isn't.

"I'll pass. Thanks though." I wolfed down the pancakes that had the littlest amount of cayenne. Man, they were so delicious, even with the cayenne pepper on. Now this is how a summer vacation should start.

Frida shrugged her shoulders. "Your loss." She dropped the pancake in her mouth and chewed. I waited. Seeing what her reaction would be. I stared and stared some more.

Three. Two. One. Someone please call 911.

Frida's eyes started to water and she fanned at her tongue.

"Water." She croaked. Tears were coming rapidly now.

Dimitri grabbed the pitcher of water and poured the water into a cup. Frida instantly grabbed the cup and gulped it down.

"More." The tears left stains on her checks but her face was as red as a tomato. Don't tell her I said that.

Dimitri poured more and Frida drank more. This is how it was for five minutes.

Once Frida was collected and calm, she just smiled and asked "What did you put in there?"

I tried innocent eyes but clearly she wasn't buying it.

I sighed "Do you really think I would tell you?" I leaned back in my chair. Might as well get comfy.

"Well it's not everyday I eat cayenne pepper in a pancake. Wouldn't you say?"

I nodded.

She scooted out of her chair and walked out of the room, Dimitri following close behind her.

I was frozen right there at that moment. Not sure exactly what was going on. Well, maybe they were going to rinse out their plates. But their plates were still on the table.

Something was going on. I just continued on eating, ignoring the cayenne pepper in each bite.

"Boo!" Someone yelled, hands on my shoulder

Frida and Dimitri looked at me then started laughing hysterically.

"You should've seen your face! I thought you were going to run away to mom." Frida cradled her stomach trying to stop laughing.

I was actually relieved to be honest. I was afraid that the twins might have done something a bit more . . . drastic.

And that is the firing squad at the Wolfe's household


message 7: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Chp 4

So you just witnessed a mediocre firing squad but wait a couple of weeks or days and you'll see what I mean.

I was finishing the rest of my pancakes (I had grabbed seconds and these were cayenne free). I'll probably say it so many times that you'll eventually get annoyed with me but these pancakes are incredibly delicious!

The twins finished their plates and washed them down. They headed upstairs while I was thoroughly enjoying some warm pancakes.

"Amber?" a quiet voice called.

I swirled around in my chair to see who it was. It was my little sister Maple. Even though she was five years younger than me, she sure didn't act like it. She was pretty much the inquisitor in our family. She was always asking constant questions. Sometimes it annoyed the rest of us but then again most children her age have their heads bent looking at the phone screen and not paying attention to the rest of the world.

"Amber?" Maple asked again.

"Yes?"

"What's an NFT?" Curiosity was on her face.

"Who told you that?" I continued to eat.

"Fico."

I should've known. Fico was most likely telling the others that I dream about being an NFT but the fact is, I didn't.

"Well NFT stands for Not Focused Teenager and that's usually for people my age who spend all their time on devices and video games and that kind of stuff." I stood up to wash my plate. Maple followed me to the kitchen.

"Oh. Okay, that makes a lot of sense now. Before, you and Fico were saying TT everywhere we went."

I couldn't help but smile. I remembered. Fico and I made a bunch of abbreviations and TT stood for Typical Teenager. We both thought it was hilarious.

"Maybe you should make your own." I put my plate under the sink and scrubbed.

"My own what?" She asked.

"Abbreviations that only you know." Still washing.

"I think I will. Thanks Amber!" Maple skipped along the wood flooring and end down towards the living room.

Sometimes Maple and I don't get along well. I would think she could handle it whenever I sat on her when she took my spot on the couch or something silly like that. It use to be where I wouldn't even want to be around her. It's dumb I know but I don't actually know why.

My father always tells us that if you don't have a good reason or any reason at all for what you're doing, it's probably best not to do it at all.

I put my plate back in the cabinet.

He's a great father and loves each and every one of us. Which reminds me, where is father? He works on week days only for his job. He should be around in the house or outside.

I remembered. He was going to the auto shop to buy some parts for our 1977 Chevy Suburban. The brakes needed a bit more adjusting. He's been looking all over the place for the parts he needs so when he found this auto shop he was excited.

I couldn't wait till we went on trips in the Chevy. The only thing we need to work are the brakes and it should be good to go.

My mother was still in the kitchen, making the last of the pancakes. My mouth watered and I wanted to grab more but those were probably for her and father.

I walked up to her and tapped her shoulder. She whirled around to face me and asked "Yes?"

"I was wondering if we could go to the library today."


message 8: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Chp 5

I was sitting at the right hand side of mother's faithful station wagon. She bought this when she was younger and decided to keep it. Everybody loves the station wagon because it reminds us of The Brady Bunch. If you haven't seen the show I deeply encourage you go see it.

When I asked my mother if we could go she said yes right away. She knew that I love going to the library and besides today is the first day of summer vacation and I heard the librarians say that they have a summer reading program coming. Who knows? Maybe they'll have sign ups today.

My mother brought everyone for the ride. We had plenty of space for at least ten people in total. You see? That's why I love old cars because they have a lot more room then the "new" cars these days. Also, if we get into a car accident with another car, the station wagon would get a scratch while the other car would be completely destroyed.

We turned onto a sharp turn and arrived at the library. The library looks amazing on the inside and it almost reminds me of a museum. On the outside the building reminds me of a cottage in a meadow. There are flowers everywhere and I can't stop staring.

"You gonna gawk at the flowers all day?" asked Frida, playing with her hair.

"'Course not. We came here for one thing and one thing only. I'm just going to check out my holds and we'll be out of here in five minutes." I really hoped it was true.

"That's what you say every time." Frida huffed.

It's true. Whenever I see new books, I think I should check them all out and not to mention I spend two hours just to see what's on the shelf.

The library's huge that's for sure. Each floor is at least estimated to be the size of a football field. Yeah, it's that big. When our family came here a few years ago, I needed to see what the library looked like and I soon found myself there for five hours. Mother eventually pulled me out, knowing that this could've go on for another hour or two.

Mother found a parking spot and we all jumped out of the car. I walked up the steps to the library, the others following me closely.

Just get one. Just get one. I had to repeat it in my head otherwise we'd be here all day long and I'm pretty sure the others don't want that.

Dimitri and Frida came up behind me and asked "How long are we gonna be here?" Neither one of them liked the library and they try to avoid it like the plague.

"Oh, not too long." I added a giggle. Yes, I know it might seem dumb but I couldn't help myself at the moment.

They both groaned, loudly.

I looked behind me, making sure that everyone was still following me. They were.

We walked up the final steps and came to the library at last!


message 9: by lorien (last edited Jul 17, 2016 07:18AM) (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Chp 6

The library was gorgeous. There was no other word to explain it.

We were on the first floor - the kiddie area. We still had two more floors in order to reach the hold section.

The first floor was like a dream coming to life with the fake trees every where and the supposed flower beds. Vines dangled from the ceiling, bookshelves were scattered around the area, and a soft glow of lanterns hanged on the vines and trees.

I loved this section simply for the creativity but the teen and adult floor looked more organized.

But what can you expect. This is the little children area after all.

My mother turned to face me. "Remember, Amber you have exactly thirty minutes. That should give you plenty of time to find what you're looking for." She looked at her watch. "Your time starts. Now!"

I took off, knowing that Fico and the twins would come, while Maple and mother looked in the library for new books.

We ran up the wooden staircase - getting hushed by the librarians as we went up.

"Hey look, Frida! It's Mrs. Ramone from church! Let's go say hello to her, shall we?" Dimitri said, dragging Frida by the arm and walked up to the counter.

Dimitri and Frida usually said hello to people they knew fairly well from church. They would crack up some of their latest jokes. They were more of a people person then Fico and I were.

"We'll catch up with you two later!" Dimitri shouted, hearing himself a hush from the closest librarian.

"Let's go then." I said, walking up the stairs. We just past the second floor. That's where the library keeps the available cafe and lounge area.

Yes, I said it. A. Cafe. You could almost imagine my family's surprise when we found out.

We'll probably visit there later on in the week. I do have to admit that their cheesecake sure taste delicious.

I was so close to the third floor now. I looked behind me to make sure Fico was keeping up with me.

I keep making sure Fico is following me every few minutes is because I need to make sure Fico or Maple is safe. Should anything happen, I can keep an eye on them. That's what happens when you're one of the oldest. It's not something that you have no choice in, it's just making sure that the little ones are safe.

I enjoy doing it and don't think it's of any trouble.

Yes! We made it.

Welcome to the third floor of the library.

Black sleek chairs filled the area along with dark oak tables. The long windows made the floor seem taller and wider.

I was definitely not exaggerating when I said that each floor was at least the size of a football field.

The tall bookshelves were stacked up against the wall and some were lined in the center. The holds area was in a small corner towards our left, against the railing.

I walked over to the holds and scanned for my last name.

Waker. Warner. Wholfe.

Ah, there we are. Wolfe.

Now I was looking for Wolfe A.

Shouldn't be too hard. When I checked earlier that morning on the computer, it said that I had three books on hold for me.

I grabbed all of my the books and signaled to Fico that we were leaving.

We walked down the stairs to the second floor.

We didn't have to walk down too far cause the twins were still talking with Mrs. Ramone.

I could hear laughter and I was sure that a librarian would come around the corner and shush them up.

" . . . drink."

" . . . red sauce."

I could hear little snippets of the conversation and I dropped my books loudly on the counter.

Mrs. Ramone turned her head. "Hello, Amber." She said in her usual steely voice.

She treated the others a lot better and to me. I have no idea why that could be. Maybe it was something I said we when were new to the church.

Mrs. Ramone narrowed her eyes. "Aren't you going to say something child?"

And here was a woman who went to church.

"Hi, Mrs. Ramone." I used my best calm voice to not upset this lady even further.

The twins knew about Mrs. Ramone's strong dislike for me. They did their best not to include me into their conversation but whenever they did, it would just make Mrs. Ramone go crazy.

You could tell my siblings were angry. Their faces were red.

"Well, I think we should start leaving now. Our mother's waiting for us downstairs." Frida said, pushing us away from the counter.

"Yes. You shouldn't keep your mother waiting for you." Mrs. Ramone in a cold voice this time. Scary.

She smiled at the others but when her smile landed on me, that smile turned quickly into a frown.

We walked downstairs so I could checkout my books.

"Well that was interesting." Dimitri said, hands in his pockets.

"I feel so bad for you Amber. Having to deal with that woman. It makes me so mad." Frida said, her fists were shaking.

"If you feel that way, why didn't you do anything about it?" I snapped.

I quickly walked past them, frustration bubbled up inside of me.

Why didn't my brothers or sister say anything to Mrs. Ramone? If they really did feel that way, why haven't a single one of them did anything at all?

I forced the tears not to leak down my face.

I didn't realize quick enough that I had stumbled, when I smashed myself against something hard.

I let out a cry of surprise and landed on the wooden flooring. My books were scattered across the floor.

"Are you all right?" a gentle voice said.

I gasped.

I had no idea that he went to this library. His family lived about an hour or so away.

I slowly raised my head. Here he was, instead of at the usual place.

It was Archer Smith. His brown hair was combed all the back like he lived in the '50s while being trapped in the twenty first century. His clothes nearly always consisted of a white t-shirt and cuffed jeans with boots except at church of course. He was about the same age as me but I always thought he was older simply because of the way he acted.

"Are you all right?" Archer asked again, he crouched down and began to pick up my books.

"Oh no! I'm all right. Really, there's no need to do that!" I exclaimed. Shoot. This was not what I expected today.

I went to reach out whatever books Archer did not pick up. He picked all of them and handed my books back to me with a smile on his face.

"Thank you." I was sure my face was heating up. It always did that whenever I got nervous and it was starting to get annoying.

"Amber!" Fico yelled, "Are you alright?" He ran over to me and the twins weren't far away from him.

Archer helped me up, clutching my arm. I was still holding onto my books.

"What happened?" Frida said, clearly concerned.

"I rammed into Archer and dropped my books, is all." I said, trying not to sound as nervous as I felt.

"I see." Dimitri said, eyeing Archer and I.

"Nice to see all of you again." Archer said.

"Same with you," said Frida, not in her usual sweet voice this time.

"Well, if you'll excuse me, I have to pick up some books for my mother." Archer said, walking off. He turned around and said, "I hope you feel better, Amber."

"Hm mm." It was the only thing I could say, which I'll probably regret later.

And with that Archer disappeared.

"What was that all about?" Frida questioned.

"Nothing." I mumbled. I hate it when my siblings are involved with these sort of things. They always bother me later on, either that or they strap me to a chair. I'm joking on that last part.

I slowly moved down the stairs, one by one.

"Any slower and you'll probably beat Opa." Dimitri said. Frida snorted.

I definitely didn't need to be made fun of right now. I rushed down the stairs.

Frida and Dimitri shoved past me and ran towards the main desk. We were back on the first floor.

They always needed to rush through and one day they'll get in trouble for it.

I looked for the time and it read 12:46 p.m. Only four more minutes to go.

One of the checking machines were available. I pulled out my wallet and picked up my library card.

The machine zapped the barcode and I was all set to lay down my books into the machine's open slot.

Once all of them were check out, the machine printed out the receipt. I ripped it out and walked to the main desk.

The twins were talking again with the librarian.

" . . . you are such sweet kids!" The librarian exclaimed.

"All right, I'm done." I told the twins. I scanned the area looking for mother and Maple.

I saw them near the cushions and waved them over. They clearly checked out some books as well.

"All ready to go then?" my mother asked, holding the chapter books close to her chest.

"Yeah. We're done." I said holding out my books to her. "And we made it under thirty minutes."

"Yay, Amber." Frida did in her cheerleader voice.

With that note we exited out of the world of books.


message 10: by R.E. (new)

R.E. Banks | 158 comments Oh my gosh, Archer is great! And I hate Mrs. Ramone of course. Things are really starting to get exciting!!! The interaction between Frida and Archer was so real. And siblings who bother you about it? So real!! Or strap you to a chair? That made me laugh!! GREAT job! And I could identify with the gigantic beautiful library, because we had one in Oregon.


message 11: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
R. E. Banks wrote: "Oh my gosh, Archer is great! And I hate Mrs. Ramone of course. Things are really starting to get exciting!!! The interaction between Frida and Archer was so real. And siblings who bother you about ..."

I'm glad you enjoyed it! Is there anything I can do to improve it?


message 12: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Lorien wrote: "Chp 1

I snapped my eyes open. The alarm clock was buzzing loudly. I snuggled deeper in the covers. It was a Saturday after all.

Then I realized something very important. God allowed me to live an..."


I find this to be a very realistic opening. My mind kind of rambles in the morning like this sometimes and then I promise myself just a little while longer won't hurt...:-)
I would suggest that you change "I shudder" to "shuddered" because you need to remain consistent in your tense throughout your story. Nice opening!


message 13: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Lorien wrote: "A Summer's Place
Chp 2

I stood in a meadow lined with grass and every kind of flower ever thought of. Flowers aren't really my thing. Give me a packet of chocolates any day but flowers . . .I woul..."


The dream is really interesting and sets us up for some very intriguing follow-up plot points, but it was a little shaky grammatically. There were a few things I noticed there that just interrupted the stream of the story. Again, be conscious and consistent with your verb tense. That makes the story flow smoothly without jarring the reader back to reality because something was subconsciously off. I love the detail you use and the way you slowly give the readers more and more about the MC. Also, as for seeing the eyes "once a week," that didn't seem as...believeable, I guess, as it could have been. Was that an update from the last draft? It just seems unlikely that the eyes would startle her so much if she saw them so frequently. Not really sure about that. Just my initial thoughts reading it.

On to the tidbit after the dream! Again, you've got a very interesting setup here. The conversation between Amber and Fico promises to pop up again with more backstory later. There are several awkward places in the writing and still quite a few grammatical slip-ups. Maybe you should consider finding a beta reader or ask one of your friends to proof behind you?


message 14: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Lorien wrote: "A Summer's Place

Chp 3

Okay so maybe it wasn't a firing squad but it sure did come awfully close to one.

As I went down the stairs, I could hear the laughter of the twins echoing through the wal..."


Before I forget, again, let me say that it's much easier to read and comment with feedback now that you've created a separate thread, so thank you!

Now, for Ch. 3: Something else to consider as you look for verb tense and awkward phrasing: redundancy. I love your style and the way you reveal information to the readers, but sometimes you reveal the same information multiple times and the writing becomes a little redundant. Look for repetitive words, information, syntax, etc. I like your characters very much; they have vibrant personalities and hold a lot of potential. I think this may be one of my favorite scenes in the story, actually.

Has anyone ever asked you to consider the difference in your writing and your speech? This may sound a little weird, but hear me out. There are many types of writing: research papers and essay assignments are formal writing, while letters and journals are examples of informal writing. Most people speak very casually, and most people write the way they speak, very casually. For informal writing, casual is perfectly acceptable, but you wouldn't dare turn in an assignment to school that resembles something from your diary, would you? It's important to know and understand the difference. Generally, in formal writing, you nix the contractions, for example, and avoid the passive voice. You adhere to strict grammatical regulations. If you were to go to an interview, you would speak in a very polished and formal manner, not like you would among your friends and family. The language should bend to your circumstances and stipulations, reflecting the informal or formal attitude you need. There's a spectrum there; it's not just black or white. Formal fades to informal and vice versa.

Now, how this pertains to us as creative writers. We have the liberty and creative license to choose how we want to portray certain stories. Some stories are better suited by an informal voice, especially those told in first person. Other stories, usually those told from a third person narrative, are better suited by a more formal approach, though not typically a strictly formal style. Your story is very informal, which is your prerogative to choose, but with informal writing, you have got to be careful. You generally want to maintain a balance of informal voice, while grammatically sound. Grammatically unstable pieces tend to jar the reader, so they don't make for pleasant reading experiences. However, in the art of writing informally intentionally, you are allowed to make grammatical errors that reflect the casual voice. If you choose to do this, I would strongly suggest that you are aware of every instance so that it is, in fact, purposeful. Also, be sure to make the same intentional mistakes consistently. As long as you are consistent, the mistakes will form a mold that turns into style and voice--phrases instead of singular instances--and rather than grammatical boo-boos that rub readers the wrong way.

Well, there's a long way to a short end. Hopefully some of that made sense and most of it makes you think. As long as you are intentional and consistent, nearly anything will work for you under the creative license rule.


message 15: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Lorien wrote: "Chp 4

So you just witnessed a mediocre firing squad but wait a couple of weeks or days and you'll see what I mean.

I was finishing the rest of my pancakes (I had grabbed seconds and these were c..."


Again, I love the homey air you've set up. I am thoroughly enjoying your characters and your plot. I do think you could expand a little more on the setting, but what's there is lovely. There are still some very minor inconsistencies, repetitions, verb tense issues, and a little bit of awkward phrasing.


message 16: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Lorien wrote: "Chp 5

I was sitting at the right hand side of mother's faithful station wagon. She bought this when she was younger and decided to keep it. Everybody loves the station wagon because it reminds us ..."


Here's an example of a larger inconsistency: In the dream, flowers aren't of interest to the MC. They "aren't my thing," if I remember correctly, but here, she can't stop staring at them.

I can tell you're into cars, or your MC is, which is cool. It adds a simple detail to the story and another layer to your character. Be cautious not to dwell too long on the little tidbits, though, unless they will be useful or relative later on in the story. Sometimes it's easy to be bogged down by unnecessary detail which counters the realistic and descriptive effect.


message 17: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Lorien wrote: "Chp 6

The library was gorgeous. There was no other word to explain it.

We were on the first floor - the kiddie area. We still had two more floors in order to reach the hold section.

The first fl..."


You took the time to develop your setting a little more here, which was really nice. The story is developing nicely too. The librarian from church has intrigued me. I wonder what her story is...Hmm...and Archer was just a doll. I'm definitely hoping to see more of him! I particularly enjoyed the sibling exchanges. As for the writing, it still reads like a rough draft, but the good news is that can easily be fixed. Great start!


message 18: by Emily (new)

Emily   Great Story!! I love how you incorporated Ambers Dream in chapter 2. I think some polishing wouldn't hurt but other than that, Great job!


message 19: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Any more progress on this? Ideas, drafts, or new content to share?


message 20: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Coralie wrote: "Any more progress on this? Ideas, drafts, or new content to share?"

I'm actually not sure. I may have a few more ideas for this story, but I don't know if I should put them on here. I know. It's been a while since I wrote a chapter.


message 21: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Well, if you do, you'll have several eager readers! Just checking in! Maybe you have something else you want to share instead?


message 22: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Thanks Coralie. That's very encouraging. : )
I might. ; )


message 23: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Lorien Rhys wrote: "Thanks Coralie. That's very encouraging. : )
I might. ; )"


You're very welcome! Yay! Definitely consider it!


message 24: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
I will. : - )


message 25: by lorien (last edited Oct 17, 2016 10:51AM) (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Chp 7


As soon as we got home, I dashed up the stairs and plopped on my bed.

I breathed in the faint aroma of peppermint and started to read.

***

I was about to read an exciting part but I was interrupted.

Frida knocked on my door. "May I come in?"

I scrambled for a hiding place for my books and placed them behind my pillows.

"Alright. You can come in now." I called.

She opened the door and smirked.

"Looks like you have quite the place up here." Frida sat on my desk chair and swirled around.

"Yeah, well, mom pretty much decorated everything." When my parents told me I could have my own room, my mom decided to add in a few accessories. She didn't do a bad job either. With the wolf pictures that I absolutely love to the dangling Christmas lights that lit up wonderfully at night.

"Still, it looks very nice." Frida said, inspecting the walls.

"So, why are you here?" Frida hardly ever came up to my room and the only times she did was when she would either call me down for dinner or she needed me to look at something.

Frida sighed. "Can't an older sister check up on her younger sister?"

"Yes she can, but you hardly come up here."

"I just wanted to see if you were fine after the Archer incident."

My face heated up unexpectedly. Of course I was. Why wouldn't I be? Meeting Archer at the library and not at church was a thrill but I could never tell Frida that.

"Ah. I see. Well, I'll just leave you to your fantasizing about boys who look unbelievably handsome." Frida laughed.

"Oh, stop." I couldn't help but laugh along with her as I threw a pillow and she caught it, throwing it back towards me.

And this was how we spent the rest of our evening. Throwing pillows and talking about stuff the boys would probably make fun of us later for.


message 26: by R.E. (new)

R.E. Banks | 158 comments That went pretty naturally. I liked it. Maybe I forgot something in the previous chapter, but why is she hiding her books?


message 27: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
R. E. Banks wrote: "That went pretty naturally. I liked it. Maybe I forgot something in the previous chapter, but why is she hiding her books?"

You didn't miss anything from the last chapter Banks. The reason why Amber hides her books is because she's afraid what her family will think if they found out what she was reading. And she's kind of afraid what they would think even though she finds nothing wrong with reading those type of books. : )


message 28: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Yay! New update!! I like the sister relationship portrayed here, course I'm partial to sibling relationships in stories. I do think you may have meant "inspecting the walls" instead of "expecting the walls" though.


message 29: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Thanks Coralie and Banks! : )


message 30: by R.E. (new)

R.E. Banks | 158 comments True, I guess I'm always shy with my books when they're romance.


message 31: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Same here. : )
I also uploaded a few more drawings if you'd like to see them.


message 32: by R.E. (new)

R.E. Banks | 158 comments Oooh, I will see them!


message 33: by lorien (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Hope you like them. : )


message 34: by lorien (last edited Dec 11, 2016 09:46AM) (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Chp 8



It's Sunday. I'm not sure if I should feel incredibly nervous or excited about my family going to church. Maybe it's because Archer and his family will be there too, I don't know.

Once we arrive at our church, we climb up the stairs and the service begins. We sing a few psalms and before I know it, it's time to head downstairs for lunch. That's what we would do if it was insanely cold outside. But since it's at least seventy degrees, everyone drives to the park.

As our family walked to the wagon, Frida nudged me.
"Hey, are you nervous?"

"No!" I exclaimed a bit too quickly. "Why would I be?"

She shrugged. "No reason."

***********

Well, we arrived. Huge oak trees scattered across the grass. They still shaded the park with their bright green leaves. Tennis courts and a skatepark were close by too.

Everyone at church helped with setting up for lunch and it usually didn't end up in a big mess.

Usually. There was one time when we first came to this church, about a year ago, that I had decided to wear my jeans and a mint t-shirt. Biggest mistake. As I tip the water bucket to pour water into my plastic cup, it spilled all over me but turns out it was juice instead of water. Thankfully, my mother had another shirt I could borrow. I had never been so embarrassed in my entire life. That's not entirely true but you get the point.

As Fico and I dragged one of the park's benches to the lunch spot, I saw Frida and Dimitri whispering and laughing. They were probably thinking up of ways to cause trouble. Hopefully it wouldn't end too bad.

When Fico and I were done, I raced back to the car and changed out of my dark navy blue dress and into my comfortable pair of Converse with cargo pants and a turquoise shirt at the sleeves, leaving the rest white.

I ran back to the tables and see if there was anything I could help with. There really wasn't, because most of the adults also arrived and I didn't want to get in their way. So I sat on the plush grass and started to tear the grass.

Frida and Dimitri, along with Fico, sat by me.

"You're going to kill the park doing that," Dimitri said.

"No she isn't you doofus," Frida smacked him on the arm playfully.

"Mommy says no name calling," Maple's voice said behind us.

"Maple's right Frida," Fico said, glaring.

"Alright, alright," Frida held her hands up in the air. "I shall do my best not to call anyone names," She looked at all of us and smiled. "For today."

"No, you should mean not ever," I shook my head. "You shouldn't call people names."

"Sheesh, yes mommy two," Frida smirked at me.

I scowled. I hated that nickname.

"Food's ready!" Yelled one of the adults.

"Finally," Dimitri grumbled, making his way to the food table.

The rest of us followed him but then our pastor appeared behind us.

"Remember Dimitri, women and children first," He said with a smile.

"Yes sir," Dimitri grumbled, moving far away from the table.

Frida placed a hand on his shoulder.
"Don't worry, anytime you'd like to equate yourself as a child, be my guest."

Dimitri shrugged her hand off.

I move quickly to the table before anything else happened between the twins.

In front of my eyes were dishes filled with delicious food. The sausage soup was my all time favorite. So were the egg salad sandwiches.

I reach out to grab my plate but then another hand was about to take the plate also.

It's Archer.

He smiled when he saw that it was me.
"Hi, Amber."

"Hi," I mumbled.

Archer gestured for me to take it.
"Ladies first."

My neck started to feel warm so I slowly grab the plate and fill it with food.

We fill our plates in silence then he reminds me that I actually did see him at the library.

"How are your books doing?"

"Sorry?" I look up from the dishes and stare at him.

"Are they alright? I mean, you did take a tumble and I'm just hoping they're okay."

"Oh, yes they're just fine," I said she

Archer smiled brightly. "That's good to hear."

I nodded and took a few napkins along with spoons and forks. I motioned to my siblings that I already got the untensils.

So instead of sitting at the benches like everyone else, my brothers and sisters sit on the grass. Our parents come over sometimes but they usually go by the rest of the adults.

I spread the untensils on the grass, ready for them to take. I slowly take a small bites from the egg salad, waiting for my siblings to come.

Frida's the first to arrive.
"It's about time."

"About time what?" I asked.

"It's about time you started talking to him," Frida replied, munching on her piece of bread.

"Oh," I said.

"That's all?" Frida stared at me, aghast. "That's all you have to say, 'oh'. "

I nodded.

"Wow," Frida laid her plate on the grass and rolled on her stomach. "You're even more odd than I thought."

"Thanks a lot," I mumbled.

"Don't take it personally but you are seriously the luckiest girl alive," Frida ripped her bread and handed some to me.

"Who's the luckiest?" A voice asked.

I smiled. It's Evelyn. She's my best friend ever since our family decided to attend to this church. Her curls reach right at her neck. Evelyn had her hair cut a while ago and I always thought she looked fiftiesish.

"Oh, just Amber," Frida shrugged.

"Really," Evelyn sat down next to me, giving me a curious look. "Why is she the luckiest?"

I stare down at my plate.

"Because she just had a talk with Archer," Frida said, nonchalantly.

"You did?" Evelyn's eyes widen. "You talked to Archer Smith and you didn't tell me?"

"It just happened," I said.

"You have to tell me everything!"

"It really isn't worth repeating."

"Repeat, it," Evelyn stared down at me.

"Fine," I mumbled. "He just asked if my books were okay. Really, that is the summary of our conversation."

"Why would he ask that?" Evelyn asked.

I rubbed my ear lobe. "Because we sort of met at the library."

"You did?" Evelyn's eyes went wide again.

"Yeah, but it isn't a big deal."

"And what did you say, after he asked about your books?"

"I said that they were alright."

"That's it?" Evelyn's face turned to disappointment.

"Yeah."

"Wow. It must be odd to be you," Evelyn poked at her food with a fork.

"Why do you guys keep saying that!" I exclaimed, throwing my hands up in the air.

"Because it's true," Both girls said at the same time.


message 35: by R.E. (new)

R.E. Banks | 158 comments Aaarg! Certainly exciting. But why is everyone calling her lucky??? Archer must be like #1 Cute Boy or something.


message 36: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Thanks for updating!! I love your characters. And you have a really nice, simplistic down-home kind of feel to the atmosphere that I really like. I thought this bit was a little choppy continuity-wise, and I'd love to see it expanded a little more. Great job!!


message 37: by lorien (last edited Feb 25, 2017 08:54AM) (new)

lorien | 2222 comments Mod
Chp 9
I'm still working on it! : )
(view spoiler)


message 38: by Coralie (new)

Coralie (corkybookworm) | 386 comments Mod
Oooh!!! Yay! This is great! Only thing I'd fix is the "bee" at the end. XD


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