(I’ll tag those who gave me advice or criticism in the Facebook version of this–thank you!–and those whose advice I still hope for.)
I’ve repeatedly appealed for your help selecting and revising pieces to enter in a novel-first-page contest. My quasi-deadline is today; after today the entry fee roughly doubles from just under $5 to just under $10, so I intend to make my entries today. (I’m scheduling this post to run somewhat earlier than usual so that anyone with last-minute advice can give it before I actually enter, but “speak now or forever hold your peace.”)
After receiving excellent advice from Nate, Amanda, Hannah, and Holly, I have made my selections and made some small improving revisions. First, the three pieces I will not be entering:
- “A Backwater Rebellion”: I have come to agree with most of my reviewers: This story is far too abrupt and confusing, particularly as it begins. It desperately needs revision.
- Castle Commander: I agree with the initial review: There’s no obvious difference between this and your stereotypical fantasy novel. This was an experiment, and while I may return to it at some point the experiment was not really a succcess.
- A Calculated Wager: This is one that reviewers seemed to overlook. It’s promising, but not there yet. As one would expect from its origin (I began it around the same time as the original version of An Internal Conflict, of which the piece of the same name in this set is a rewrite), it needs substantial revision.
The three pieces I intend to enter in the contest:
If you think I should choose differently (or if you’d like to make your agreement known), please speak up! And I still need your help revising the pieces and improving the plot summaries (warning: both of those links are to PDFs); if you have any ideas on either front, please let me hear them before the day is out.