Monday, March 21, 2011

Show Me The Voice! Critique Blogfest

Linked up @ Show Me the Voice, to post the first 250(257) words of my finished ms to show off my character's voice.

Author: Debra Elliott
Title: Kentucky Rain
Genre: YA Coming of Age

Rain, Rain the cool Appalachian night breeze whispered my name. The scent of corn whiskey floated through my bedroom window. The eerie sounds of dry flies echoed throughout the pine trees. The hairs on the back of my neck prickled. Mommy always said I was a special child. I sensed things before they happened.

The dry flies finally quietened down. The only sound that flitted through the bedroom was Granny Dodd's loud snoring. Between Granny Dodd's racket and my nerves sleep wouldn't come none too soon.

Tomorrow I would turn fifteen. I didn't feel fifteen or even look it. I was too tall, too lanky and flat chested. Heck, I hadn't even got my period!

Granny Dodd seemed to think that was a blessing. I thought it was a curse. I overheard her one day tell mommy, "Junnie Mae, don't you fret none about Rain. At least them there mountain boys won't be buzzing 'round her like they do with that Hopkins girl Peggy Lou ."

I wanted to scream at my granny, "I want them buzzing around me Granny Dodd!" Especially, Tommy McCoy.

I shifted my weight in the old metal bed I shared with my little sister Ruby June and blew out the kerosene lamp.The room went dark, except for the gigantic full moon shining through our window. Shivering down to my bones I snuggled deeper underneath Granny Dodd's hand-made double wedding ring quilt.

I closed my eyes and fell into a fitful sleep, dreaming of first kisses, picnics in the holler and Tommy McCoy.


Andrea said...


Stina Lindenblatt said...

If this is YA, then the character wouldn't be using the word Mommy. My 8 and 11 yo don't even call me that. It's too young. Actually your voice sounds MGish at times. When I first read it, I though it was from a different time period. But I think that might be because of the region it's from. It has a different feel to it than I'm used to for YA (and I read a lot of YA).

Good luck!

Hart Johnson said...

Oh, I think this is a great voice. And I disagree about mommy. I think that's regional. My 15YO calls me mama a lot and mommy on occasion--it's just sort of her personality. (my son, on the other hand has used ONLY mom since he was 3)--so I'd just double check you're authentic for your area. There were a few missing commas and a their where it should have been there, but I think the voice is great!

Stephanie Thornton said...

The voice here is great- I definitely got a feel for the piece.

My one critique is that there are a number of short, choppy sentences in the first paragraph. Combining a couple might make it flow better.

Good luck!

Angelica R. Jackson said...

I also had a suggestion for the sentences in the first paragraph--they are choppy, but nearly all of them start with "The . . " I think if you do some combining or switch the order of the subject and verb for variety, that will help us settle into the character's voice.

Thanks for stopping by my blog!

Janet Johnson said...

Loved this voice! Really pulled me in. I did feel like it was not contemporary, and I was surprised to learn the character as 15. I think the mommy threw me, too. But if it is regional, I can accept that.

I would definitely keep reading though. Your writing has a soft cozy feel to it that makes me want to curl up and read it under a fuzzy blanket. :)

Christina Mercer said...

I agree with previous post, the voice and writing draws me in with a cozy feel. It has a very atmospheric quality, beginning with her name, Rain. The only niggling thought I had was a conflict between the verbage 'rain' and 'dry' flies. At first I thought the wind whispered both her name and the weather, but then I wasn't sure.
As a side note, both of my very large sons still call me Mama. Cheers! :-)

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