August 25, 2005

AMWOC - Second Installment

Here's a few more words on my way to a million. I got bit by the bug hard last night, and I'm writing a story. I've got more than 1500 words so far, and most of the major plot mapped out.

This is intended to be a juvenile SF book, along the lines of Between Planets or Space Cadet by Heinlein. It takes place on Mars.

So far there are only two characters that I have a solid grip on: a father and a son.

I've put a snippet of dialogue in the extended entry. This is pretty rough (not heavily edited by any means), but I'm curious: does this sound like a natural conversation between a dad and a 12-year-old?

Does it make you want to learn more about these characters?

Let me know what you think.

“Just watch out for the Burroughs Burrow wights.”

“Burrow wights? What are wights?”

“Wight is an old-fashioned word for ghost.”

Jake thought about this for a few minutes. Then: “Dad?”

“Yes, son.”

“Do you believe in ghosts?”

“I … I don’t know what to believe, son. I don’t think so.”

“What about mom and Pete?”

“I’d like to think your mom and brother can see us and that they’re still with us somehow. But I’m just not sure. I believe what I can see, what I can feel. I’ve never seen a ghost. And as much as I would like to see or touch your mother again, to hug your brother … I just can’t be sure.”

“So what’s the story of the Burrow wights? Have you ever seen one?”

Paul Robinson chuckled gently. “Son, that’s just an old story the folks here tell to add some notoriety to their city. Some early Burroughs settler thought it might attract some tourists.”

Posted by JohnL at August 25, 2005 10:52 PM | TrackBack

Seems like natural dialogue to me; this snippet on its own doesn't have a deep hook, but (given a proper front end) I think it carries you along...

Posted by: LDH at August 26, 2005 10:01 AM

Yeah, I tried to keep it to simple "snippet" length. I'm not very good at dialogue, but I am familiar with talking to kids at this age, so I'm using my own ear to make sure it sounds right.

There's not a real "deep hook," though the reference to the mom and brother is supposed to make you want to know more. Their backstory will play an important role at a critical plot point later on.

Thanks for commenting!

Posted by: JohnL at August 26, 2005 10:18 AM

sounds right to me

Posted by: Ted at August 26, 2005 10:56 AM

Sounds good to me. It has a natural flow about it, and yeah the part about the mother & brother have me curious.

Posted by: phin at August 26, 2005 02:58 PM
Save This Page