Celeste is in Year 12 and is writing this piece as part of her studies.
I tell Liam to spread his map out over the table while I’m flicking through the pages of the book. Finally, I find the chapter on creatures and start explaining to Liam about what Antoinette told me at graduation. “At graduation, right before Justin and Anastasia showed up, Antoinette was telling me about the first war and the Orb. She mentioned that the Coven also had mythical creatures like dragons and goblins as part of their army’s defence”.
I pass him the book and draw a circle around the map with my finger “Look at the map Liam. The Coven’s headquarters is hidden in the middle of this massive forest. Remember how Nick said they think it’s underground and they can bet that it’s going to have defences above ground?” I’m now pointing at the pictures in the book of dragons and giant serpents “I bet that’s their defences”.
You write well, Celeste and your character has a very strong voice. You have established a strong setting and cause for tension in your story. From this piece I can tell that there is conflict ahead for your main character and her friends.
My suggestions mainly relate to tweaking the story to tighten it up and make it as strong as it can be.
When you find yourself using words like, “I tell…”, think about whether it would be stronger to actually have the person say the words.
Here’s what I mean:
I point to the table. “Spread your map out, Liam.” I flick through the book on my lap and find the chapter on creatures.
Or instead of saying things like, “I start explaining”, just get your character to explain.
“At graduation, right before Justin and Anastasia showed up, Antoinette was telling me about the first war and the Orb. She mentioned that the Coven also had mythical creatures like dragons and goblins as part of their army’s defence.”
Try to keep things as simple and as clear as you can for the reader. This could mean breaking up some of your dialogue into smaller pieces, with responses from another character in between.
Here’s what I mean:
I pass him the book and draw a circle around the map with my finger “Look, The Coven’s headquarters is hidden in the middle of this massive forest.
(Celeste, you could put in response from Liam here.)
I find a page full of dragons and giant serpents. “I bet that’s the above ground defence that Nick was talking about.”
One more tip
Think about whether a word that ends in ‘ing’ is the best word to use. Sometimes words with these endings slow the pacing of the story down and force you to use unnecessary extra words.
Instead of “I was hunting”, use the words “I hunted”.
Thanks for sharing your piece with us, Celeste. Keep writing:)
I enjoyed reading your work and I hope you found my suggestions helpful.
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