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Son of a Pitch round two has begun! This week my blog will be dedicated to the authors of these amazing entries.

Comments are for the Son of a Pitch critiquers and authors only! All other comments will be deleted, them’s the rules peeps.

At the end of the week, I will vote for my favorites…I think five…I should check that.

Onward!

Welcome to Team Rarity!

Entry 6:

Title: Homegrown

Category and Genre: Adult Thriller

Word Count: 82,000

Query:

DALTON, an eighteen year old from Washington D.C. suffering from depression since the death of his father, has come to the attention of ISIS recruiters. He and many others like him worldwide are being radicalized to perform atrocious attacks against the enemies of the Islamic State.

AAZAM, an ISIS Commander, has set in motion a plan to attack the International Coalition in their individual homelands. He will use Dalton and the other homegrown terrorists to make the West pay for their interference.

When Dalton’s mother, GAIL, realizes his involvement with the fanatical group, she will turn over heaven and hell to rescue her son before he does the unthinkable or gets himself killed.

First 250 words:

Ninety seconds; do or die. Glancing at the scoreboard, Dalton saw he had less than a minute and a half left to break the tie for the State Hockey Championship. The cold from the ice gave no relief as he shook the sweat from his eyes. His chest pumped like billows from exertion, using the break that the off-side gave him to recover. This is it. We either end it here or take a chance in sudden overtime. Got to get the puck out of our zone. What would Dad do?

He looked up in the stands and the empty seat beside his mother played on his mind. Not like Dad to miss a game this important.

“Okay guys, let’s do this,” Dalton said, the letter ‘C’ on his jersey heavier than it had ever been. For a seventeen old, it was a heavy responsibility, but he shouldered it well.

“Jaxson, we got this,” he yelled to the goalie. Jaxson shifted nervously on his skates, banging each post with his stick to center himself to the net, trapper raised at the ready.

The linesman slid up to the left faceoff circle, scanning to see if the players were in their positions.  Both Dalton and the opposing centerman faced off; muscles tense, sticks quivering.

The puck dropped and Dalton scooped it behind him to Daniel. As the puck rebounded behind the net, Dalton didn’t hesitate but, left his opposite standing there watching the play.

Now for my thoughts.

But first, a reminder, I am not an expert. I am a writer. My comments are my opinions. If any of these strange wordy things that pop into my brain and onto the page make sense for YOUR ms and makes YOUR writer’s brain spin with all the inspiration, YEA!!! Use them…run with them…let your creative brain go! If reading one of my insanely odd thoughts just makes you shrug and sparks no new idea, forget it! YEA!

I am here to help YOU make YOUR ms the best it can be. I do not want to rewrite it. I do not want it to be something else. Your words should be yours. I WANT TO HAVE A GREAT TIME!

Feel free to ask questions. Feel free to post any rewrites in the comments. I will be happy to answer anything and read revisions! Anything I can do to help get the creative juices flowing.

CRITIQUE:

Query:

DALTON, an eighteen year old from Washington D.C. suffering from depression since the death of his father, has come to the attention of ISIS recruiters. He and many others like him worldwide are being radicalized to perform atrocious attacks against the enemies of the Islamic State. (this final sentence is an omniscient POV and doesn’t seem to fit. If this is Dalton’s POV, let us meet the ISIS recruiters through his eyes…what draws him to them. What does he want from them, for himself?)

AAZAM, an ISIS Commander, has set in motion a plan to attack the International Coalition in their individual homelands. He will use Dalton and the other homegrown terrorists to make the West pay for their interference. (this final sentence gives us what you said in the previous para’s last sentence in the POV it belongs in…good set up here.)

When Dalton’s mother, GAIL, realizes his involvement with the fanatical group, she will turn over heaven and hell to rescue her son before he does the unthinkable or gets himself killed. (Good character motivation here, but a bit of description, who is she?)

*You have three POVs set up, the mother needs a bit more description. Dalton needs a bit more set up with his desires, what he wants, the other two have clear goals, clear motivations.

Now bring them together. Now how do they link? How do their stories come together? What do they face. What obstacles? What are the stakes for each as they face final decisions? From this I assume this ms has three POVs…

 

First 250 words:

Ninety seconds; do or die. (Nice opening!) Glancing at the scoreboard, Dalton saw he had less than a minute and a half left to break the tie for the State Hockey Championship. (make this sentence stronger, up the tension…Dalton glanced at the scoreboard. Less than a minute and a half to break the tie…) The cold from the ice gave no relief (relief from what?) as he shook the sweat from his eyes. His chest pumped like billows from exertion, using (this is confusing because I connect the action to his chest) the break that the off-side gave him to recover. (How is he using the break? What is he doing? What does he see, smell, hear? Set the scene.) This is it. We either end it here or take a chance in sudden overtime. Got to get the puck out of our zone. What would Dad do? (Like these internal thoughts! WHERE IS DAD? SHOULD WE BE WORRIED?)

He looked up in the stands and the empty seat beside his mother played on his mind. Not like Dad to miss a game this important. (And he’s…upset…confused…worried?)

“Okay guys, let’s do this,” Dalton said, (there are others around him? Who?) the letter ‘C’ on his jersey heavier than it had ever been. For a seventeen old, it was a heavy responsibility, but he shouldered it well.

“Jaxson, we got this,” he yelled to the goalie. (The rest of the team are not near the goal?) Jaxson shifted nervously on his skates, banging each post with his stick to center himself to the net, trapper raised at the ready.

The linesman slid up to the left faceoff circle, scanning to see if the players were in their positions.  Both Dalton and the opposing centerman faced off; muscles tense, sticks quivering.

The puck dropped and Dalton scooped it behind him to Daniel. As the puck rebounded behind the net, Dalton didn’t hesitate, but, left his opposite standing there watching the play.

*I like the hint that something is wrong…Dad not being there, maybe make this stronger, let him react to it. Set the scene a bit more. Overall, I like it. I don’t know much about hockey, so some of the terms are unknown, but I can get the feel for what it means.

I hope some of that, maybe just one little thing, helps!

Thank you so much for being a part of Son of a Pitch!

Thank you for sharing your words!

And may the road of revising and querying and publishing be a great one!

Be sure to join us on Twitter! #SonofaPitch is super fun! #TeamRarity rocks!

 

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