Wednesday, April 27, 2011

First 50 Words #6

TITLE: Million Dollar Lunch
GENRE: MG Adventure

Chapter 1: Camp French Fry

Rome twisted his body, firmly grasping his section of a huge, juice-filled tarp, and scanned the flat, open field. Ten teams of campers including his own lugged tarps toward a yellow tickertape finish line nearly half a football field away. Only one team was ahead of his.


  1. I'm trying to picture what a "juice-filled tarp" looks like -- is it bunched up to look like a sort of water balloon? Held up at the edges with a pool of juice in the middle? Other than that one pesky detail, this scene is clear and easy to picture. Starting with a race gives it an immediate sense of movement, and I'd read on to see if Rome's team wins. I'd want to know pretty quickly what the stakes are for winning or losing the race, so hopefully you get to that soon after this section.

  2. I agree that it's a great star for MG! I am thinking that first sentence could be trimmed a bit to make it more snappy. Good Luck : )

  3. I also wondered what a juice-filled tarp was, so that took me out of the story for a bit.

    You might want to simplify that first sentence and not have Rome scan the scenery. He's in a race after all, and should be running, (or walking fast) not looking around describing things.

    And instead of telling us what's happening, show it. Have him look over his shoulder to see how close others are. Have him quicken his pace to catch up to the front runners, etc. Make it feel like a race.

  4. Thanks for your comments! I will keep working on that first sentence for sure. It has been giving me fits.

  5. I think, like everyone else, I stopped at "juice-filled tarp." Do you have to tell us it's filled with juice at this point? Can't you just say something like "heavy, unwieldy tarp"?