Wednesday, July 14, 2010

July Secret Agent #16

TITLE: The History of the Tie Dye Bra
GENRE: Contemporary Women's Fiction

It wasn't my fault I got the "D." What professor in their right mind schedules an accounting exam on a Friday morning at 8:00 a.m.? Everyone on campus knows Thursday is dollar beer night at Roxy's. You would think that an educator in an institution of higher learning could invoke a little wisdom.

It's so unfair. I mean, I'm great at accounting. It's my major, for heaven's sake. But Corona for a dollar? He's lucky I found my seat that morning. You'd think I could have at least gotten extra credit for my application of sound fiscal practices.

Regardless, when my advisor got wind of a "D" average in a required senior level course, she scheduled a tutoring session faster than I could say "don't forget the lime wedge." It was ridiculous; I was pulling excellent grades otherwise. If I hadn't fallen asleep during those last ten questions, I would have easily passed. In fact, if my drool hadn't smudged an entire section of the answer sheet, I'd probably be looking at a solid 'B' right now.

Unfortunately, my only shot of retaking the test was to meet with some nerdy accounting tutor and convince him I was earnestly trying to better my accounting prowess and thereby deserved a second chance and a makeup exam. So there I was, waiting for Dwight from The Office to waste my time teaching me something I already knew, when I could be watching Wheel of Fortune at the Student Center.

13 comments:

JEN said...

Sorry,not hooked. I can't make sense of a serious student who gets drunk before an exam; even if I could, I'm not sympathetic or interested.

Wishing she could be watching Wheel of Fortune compounds the problem.

sue laybourn said...

I'm not getting much of an idea where you're going with this. There's some nice touches of humor and you write well, but I can't summon up much interest in what happens to the MC at this point. She seems a bit feckless so you're not doing her any favors.

Ask yourself if this is really the best place to start the story? Is this the inciting incident?

Genevieve Wilson said...

I'm hooked. WIthin the span of 250 words I laughed out loud twice. Maybe I missed something, but I didn't take her to be a serious student, just flighty. Maybe I can just relate to having to choose dollar beer night over an early morning exam. :)

Lucy Woodhull said...

I'm with Genevieve. The narrator has a whole lot more personality than the person who eschews dollar beer night and shows up sober to the exam. Besides, Captain Teetotaler would probably not have a very interesting story to tell. Hooked.

Carol Newman Cronin said...

Hooked, but I also wonder where this is heading. I love the writing and potentially the character, but the big picture is full of contradictions as already noted above. I hope you sort it out because I would love to read the rest someday!

Angie said...

I'm hooked. I love the MC's voice and was giggling by the end of the first paragraph. I have no idea where this is going though. I'm curious to see how she develops since her attitude and actions seemingly contradict her excellent grades and claim to be great at accounting, but I would keep reading to find out.

Maggie L.P. said...

I love your voice. :) And I think your heroine is going to be a lot of fun. Yep, the whole dollar-beer thing's a quandary, all right! hehe

I would tighten up the first para a little. Not much; just remove a couple of words so it sounds like her voice (eg "You would think" becomes "You'd think", "on a Friday morning at 8.00 a.m." becomes "for Friday 8.00 a.m."). Ditto for paras 3 and 4. But, hey, that's easy when you've got a fab voice!

therealtwinmom said...

Absolutely hooked. Great voice. Impressed with your ability to make accounting sound hilarious. Well done.

Vermilion said...

I really love your voice, but I thought the drool thing was a bit too much, kinda like forced humor. One more thing, I thought this sounded more YA than women's fiction, perhaps because of the setting.
Otherwise, great job!

Barbara said...

I'm with the not hooked. She's not an appealing character to me. But I really think that has to do with me being past that stage in life when getting drunk is cool and fun. I do think it would appeal to the ya/college crowd.

Apart from that, the writing is good and she does have a voice. She's just not someone I care to read about.

Amy Kinzer said...

I like the voice and the writing a lot but I wonder about an MC who doesn't understand why an accounting professor would schedule an exam at 8:00 in the morning. That seems too obvious to use that in your opening paragraph.

I like the writing so much and it looks like it could be a fun read but I'm not understanding why your MC is blaming other people for getting a D when it's obviously her own fault for drinking so much and falling asleep during the test.

Kathleen@so much to say, so little time said...

I'm not hooked, b/c I don't like the character. The writing is quite good--you explain a lot in a clear voice--it's just the voice is not that of a sympathetic character. If she has a justification for being irresponsible, self-absorbed and self-destructive, I need to know it. Right now I wouldn't read farther b/c I'm disgusted by the behavior & attitude.

Secret Agent said...

The voice is clear and strong, but I didn't love the college-ness (just made up a word, I think!) of the piece. It also feels really contrived to me. Would flubbing up one test really put someone who was "pulling excellent grades otherwise" in such dire straits that they'd need a tutor? I'm just not loving this one. Sorry!