Thursday, July 17, 2008

#102 SECRET AGENT Are You Hooked?

Title: The King in the North
Genre: Adult Fantasy


The walk through the long hall always made Hasdrumal nervous, and he knew full well that this was the Master’s intention. Statues of the Master were arrayed down the side of the hall, gradually increasing in size. The ever-higher statues gave Hasdrumal the unpleasant feeling that he was shrinking as he walked. If even Hasdrumal still felt such crippling awe after so many years, it must be truly daunting for the few others permitted into this hall.

A storm brewed outside; flashes of colored light streamed through the ornately stained glass with each stroke of lightning. Hasdrumal’s footsteps echoed off the high ceilings and vaulted walls. Save for the Master and himself, the hall was empty. No guards were present. None were necessary.

He approached to within fifty feet of the throne, no closer, and prostrated himself. The deep, fluid voice bade him to rise after barely thirty heartbeats. The Master was impatient today, an ill portent. Hasdrumal stood with head bowed, advanced to the base of the carved marble steps, and dropped to one knee. Reddish gold light shone from globes suspended in midair, and haunting music was barely audible in the background. How many thousands of times had he repeated this process? He had long since lost count, but the presence of the Master still made him tremble.

Then the voice spoke like thunder in the distance.

“Do you come bearing news for me, most favored of the Faithful?”

15 comments:

Katie said...

I'm sorry, no.

You need to break up the first paragraph. There is a lot there and I got a little lost...

Anonymous said...

I agree with what katie said. A 250 word first paragraph is daunting to read.
Hasdrumal is an interesting character though. Try to break it up and see what happens!

Emily H

Carrie said...

Ditto on what others have said. I'd also suggest varying the sentence length and construction a little to help make it flow better. I really love the imagery of the increasing statues and how they make him feel like he's shrinking!

Karen Duvall said...

Break up the graph. And we're in Hasdrumal's POV so you don't need to keep repeating his name so many times. Nothing much seems to be happening here to hook me. It's all set-up and no story.

Craft Write said...

I'd also like to know a little story here. The repetition of Hasdrumal's name is a little distracting.

Lori said...

Not just yet. It has potential, but the entire first paragraph is nothing but internal musings. The MC walks around; nothing happens. Your scene should start with the MC already at his Master's feet.

Tatum said...

I think your story begins with the first line of dialogue. Right now your opening is all set up. And while it's interesting information, it doesn't hook me into reading more.

Jenita said...

Probably not. I liked the first paragraph, the part with the statues was interesting. The next couple paragraphs started to drag, though. The setting strikes me as a bit cliche -- the empty halls, the dark, storminess, haunting music... nothing really happens, and I couldn't find much to relate with in Hasdrumal. It didn't really have a hook, for me.

Alicia said...

Yes, but with caution. I like the first paragraph and the last. The parts in between seem like filler -- or at least need a good trim. I'd read long enough to see where the plot heads.

fairchild said...

Not hooked.

It was all descriptions and no action. Nothing happened and I don't get any hints as to what's special about this story.

I'd try to get to the plot sooner, instead of having the MC think about the process of walking to the Master.

Beth said...

Sorry, but no. Too much description, telling, etc. Nothing really happened.

Merc said...

I'm interested in the situation, but all the internal monologue and staring at the setting/description doesn't hook me. It's well-written, but I'd rather see the dude at his master's feet and the conversation from then on as the opening.

Good luck,

~Merc

Inkblot said...

Ditto Merc.

secret agent said...

You're using your descriptions well but I don't think we need them this early on in the story. I'd pare back to the stuff after he enters The Master's presence and wrap some of this mood-building in at other places.

Ardyth said...

I was interested in the situation, but I'd like more action to start out with.