Thursday, April 10, 2008

Are You Hooked? First Page #4


Layla was convinced he was following her. The chance of the same man appearing at five different points in her journey home by coincidence was slim.

There he was again.

The same, non-descript face with the recognisable dark blue jeans and vanilla t-shirt. What man would leave the university, linger outside a ladies room, hop on a bus to the nearest hair accessory store, grab an ice-cream at a family run ice-cream store then walk the exact same route to the small culdesac which only had six families within it? A stalker.

Great. She’d have another reason for her father to request that she stop attending university and get married.

As she rummaged in her handbag for her keys, identifiable by touch from the small, soft purple elephant keyring, Layla glanced around at the rest of the landscaped gardens.

Please be home, daddy, she pleaded, dropping her keys at the sight of the man loitering at the entrance to the road. Even if we disagree, please be home to protect me.


  1. YES.

    There's tension and conflict (a stalker) right away and you put the MC first. I'm intrigued what conflicts she has with her father.

    While at times I thought the details were a bit distracting (the keychain, for example) I did like that I could visualize things.

    Only thing I'd like to see a touch more of is how worried she is--there's some excellent hints and subtlety here, but an occasional physical (bodily) reaction might help show it even more what she's feeling about being stalked.

    (Me, I'd just sic some zombies on him. %-))

    Good luck.


  2. Yes. But it could be tightened a bit. Some of the description slows down the reading. For example: grab an ice-cream at a family run ice-cream store

  3. I'm sorry, but no, I wouldn't read more. The passive voice bogs this beginning down, and the laundry list of reasons she thought she was being stalked is drawn out more than needed. I'd expect something punchier and tighter to reflect a feeling of tension. But it's delivered casually, which doesn't match the situation, at least not to me. Just MO.

  4. No, you drag the fact she's being tailed on for too long. I caught myself skimming to see what happens next. Make a point of it in the first paragraph and move on. Then I'll give you a yes.

  5. Sorry, but no for me. You've got a great premise, great potential conflict, but the way it's presented fell a little flat. There was a bit too much overstatement of the situation; i think you could have cut a large portion of it to beef up the pace.

  6. Oops, I skimmed a little bit, too. I think it lacked the tension you were ultimately trying to create. It's a great premise and could potentially REALLY pull readers right in. I think I need to care more about the mc right away (I find that I don't), and I have to FEEL her tension, her fear more. Then you'll have me!

  7. Feelings, emotions - its my big 'to work on' area. Let me at the rewrite!!!

  8. Forgot to leave my name for my last comment...