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DOGGONE VOICE: LOVE IN REAL LIFE

Friday, 29 June 2012  |  Posted by Brenda Drake
 

 
Title: LOVE IN REAL LIFE
Genre: Adult Romance
Shower time. I could do this with my eyes closed. Every detail was so burned into my brain. Like someone had hit me a branding iron so many times, the pattern of morning was the only clear thing I could see.
Step into my over expensive shower. Turn on the water. Adjust the spray, temperature, reach out, turn on iPod. Today’s selection, “Time Is Running Out” by Muse.
Great. Please don’t be prophetic.
Shampoo in hand. Wash hair. Soap. Scrub. Rinse.
I stood in the hot spray, feeling my overworked muscles relaxing a bit. Not enough, but a little. I had been dancing way too much lately. I ached in places a younger body wouldn’t feel and I was tired. Stretching my arms out to brace myself on the wall in front of me, I closed my eyes and imagined a certain set of hands on me, rubbing that soreness right away. Mmm. So nice.
The reverie was interrupted by heavy footsteps made by a tiny person. Tramp, tramp, tramp. It was Rose. My baby girl was five. I could not believe it. She came running in the room. Smart, funny, beautiful, healthy. All the things you want a child to be. And I loved her more than the moon. She carried none of my damaged psyche. In short, she was perfect. And I’m not just saying that because I’m her mom. It was the truth. I may be lots of things, but liar is not one of them.

Filed: Misc, Workshops

5 Comments
  • Leigh Ann says:

    OOoh, I know this entry too! 😀

    I love this voice! I can tell that the MC is very sensual and connected with her body. I love how we walk through the steps of a shower with her – it feels very rhythmic and in tune with the way she thinks. I really can “hear” her, which is not easy to achieve.

    My only nitpicks are that I notice some tense disagreement, especially in that last paragraph. That’s also where we start jumping around between ideas – the baby is beautiful, I’m damaged, I’m not a liar. I’d like to have a smoother transition between those ideas, maybe, to see why they’re connected.

    I’m really not familiar with the Adult Romance genre, and whether addressing the reader is a normal part of voice – like, “I’m not just saying that because .” Just something to watch for.

    Great work! Sounds awesome.

  • Marieke says:

    Ooh, I think I recognize something here too! 🙂

    I love the voice here, it’s accessible and intruiging. I do wonder what makes the shower scene different. It sounds just a little mundane, and based on that I’m not really sure what to expect. The interesting comment is her damaged psyche, right? Maybe you could ramp that up a little more?

    One thing I would consider is varying your sentence structure more. There are a few longer sentences, but overall it’s very snappy and short. And sometimes, I think, a little too much so. In other words, reading it leaves me breathless–I think you could play with rhythm a lot more here 🙂

  • callmebecks says:

    There’s a ton of potential here. There are some great hints of voice – an MC that’s talented, tough, sensual and a little world-weary. Your fifth paragraph is particular effective at really showing and defining who she is.

    IN-LINE CRITS

    Shower time. I could do this with my eyes closed. Every detail was so burned into my brain. Like someone had hit me a branding iron so many times, the pattern of morning was the only clear thing I could see. (Personally, I don’t need anything after the second sentence. The whole branding iron part read a little rough and jarred me out of the excerpt.)

    Step into my over expensive shower. (Opinion: I don’t need to know how expensive her shower is. I’d rather just keep the pace by cutting this down to “Step in.”) Turn on the water. Adjust the spray, temperature. (Added period to separate this action out.) Reach out, turn on iPod. Today’s selection: (changed to colon) “Time Is Running Out” by Muse.

    Great. Please don’t be prophetic.

    Shampoo in hand. Wash hair. Soap. Scrub. Rinse.

    I stood in the hot spray, feeling my overworked muscles relaxing a bit. Not enough, but a little. I had been dancing way too much lately. I ached in places a younger body wouldn’t feel, (added comma) and I was tired. Stretching my arms out to brace myself on the wall in front of me, I closed my eyes and imagined a certain set of hands on me, rubbing that soreness right away. (I love this paragraph. The imagery, the sensations. You tell me more about your MC in these few sentences than you do anywhere else, and it’s so well-crafted that I don’t really need the two sentences here at the end.) Mmm. So nice.

    The reverie was interrupted by heavy footsteps made by a tiny person. (Great sentence.) Tramp, tramp, tramp. It was Rose. My baby girl was five. I could not believe it. She came running in the room. Smart, funny, beautiful, healthy. All the things you want a child to be. And I loved her more than the moon. She carried none of my damaged psyche. In short, she was perfect. And I’m not just saying that because I’m her mom. It was the truth. I may be lots of things, but liar is not one of them. (There’s lots of dodging about here and a lot of telling. As a reader, I’m being handed information that I would rather earn along the way.)

  • AngiNicole says:

    Revised Edition!!!

    Shower time. I could do this with my eyes closed. Every detail was so burned into my brain.

    Step in. Turn on the water. Adjust the spray, temperature. Reach out, turn on iPod. Today’s selection: “Time Is Running Out” by Muse.

    Great. Please don’t be prophetic.

    Shampoo in hand. Wash hair. Soap. Scrub. Rinse.

    I stood in the hot spray, feeling my overworked muscles relaxing a bit. Not enough, but a little. I had been dancing way too much lately. I ached in places a younger body wouldn’t feel, and I was tired. Stretching my arms out to brace myself on the wall in front of me, I closed my eyes and imagined a certain set of hands on me, rubbing that soreness right away.

    The reverie was interrupted by heavy footsteps made by a tiny person. Tramp, tramp, tramp. It was Rose. My baby girl was five. I could not believe it. She came running in the room. Smart, funny, beautiful, healthy. All the things you want a child to be. And I loved her more than the moon. She carried none of my damaged psyche. In short, she was perfect. And not just because I’m her mom. It was the truth. I may be lots of things, but liar is not one of them.
    “Mama, did you make my lunch yet?”
    “Mama will be out in just a sec. Are you dressed?”
    Same questions, different morning.
    “Uh-huh.”
    I couldn’t help but smile. She was exactly what I never knew I wanted.

  • Brenda Drake says:

    I do hear your character’s voice, and I loved the fifth paragraph. You’re a very talented writer and there’s an easy flow to your sentences in this version.

    I wonder why you don’t mention who’s hands she imagined on her? Is there a reason not to mention the name or more details like … ‘I closed my eyes and imagined Dalton’s strong hands on me, rubbing the soreness away. Water dripping from his dark curls as he gives me that sexy smirk that drives me crazy.’ I know this doesn’t fit your story, but hey, it’s Adult Romance, give us a hint of the passion to come. This, of course, is only my opinion and others may feel differently.

    As it is, the shower scene isn’t pulling me in. Is this where your story truly starts? If this is where you firmly believe it starts, I’d bring out more details about the mysterious rubbing hands.

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