Wednesday, July 13, 2011

July Secret Agent #19

TITLE: You Fall
GENRE: YA Science Fiction/Romance

I'm following a boy up this tree. We're both panting with the frantic energy of being chased and there is sweat all over me, dirt coating my forehead. I keep catching glimpses of him through the thick pine, of his black heeled, calloused feet and his rolled up jeans. His ankles are all scratched and bloody, like they've been run through thorns. These pine branches wrestle around him and I can tell that he's big. I'm not. It's easy for me to slide through the brown fingered gaps. The scent of pine is so thick that it fills my nostrils and threatens a sneeze. I stop, hold my breath and squeeze my eyes tight to keep it from escaping, lest they hear it, hear us.

"C'mon Sia." His whisper is ragged and I'm afraid to be away from him. My eyes don't see through the woods like his do. Most of the time I'm too afraid to see anything as I should. "C'mon," he whispers again and I dive for another branch. We're almost at the top. The branches are growing closer to the trunk. I wish we weren't making so much noise and I wonder if they can see the swaying tree from wherever they're hiding, if they are just waiting for us to expose ourselves, to close in and sweep us away to the sky with the rest of them, the taken.


  1. You've done a great job of creating a sense of urgency and tension around your main character that really draws your reader onto the branch alongside her.

    "I wish we weren't making so much noise and I wonder if they can see the swaying tree from wherever they're hiding, if they are just waiting for us to expose ourselves..."

    I got a sense of The Hunger Games with this line--don't know if it can be tweaked to get rid of that comparison, or if it's going to be a given, with the treetop hiding, but that's my only hang up with your excerpt. Good luck!

  2. Excellent tension here, but I think you could make it better by revealing a little more about why they're running earlier in the first paragraph rather than the second.

    great start, I'd read on!

  3. I like this! One part confused me though: the MC says she can tell the boy is big. Has she not seen him before? If that's the case, how does he know her name? Other than that, I'd keep reading! Good luck!

  4. This entry makes me ask all the right kinds of questions, not because your writing confused me but because I want to know more! Your sensory details are great and I can almost put myself in the pine tree with them. Although, I'd rather not, since I have no idea what's chasing them!

    I'd definitely read on. Good luck!

  5. What great description! Of the boy's feet and ankles. Of the pine tree. Of how the branches fit around each of their bodies. I felt like I was in that tree. And a nice cliff-hanger ending.

    I only had one comment, and it's already been mentioned. I immediately thought of the Hunger Games, too. I have no idea if it will be a problem for you or not, but it wouldn't stop me from reading more.

    Very nicely done!

  6. I'm hooked!

    I might change is the use of "this," "these," etc. I think the first sentence would work better as, "I'm following a boy up a tree."

    Also, I was a bit confused by the fact that Sia didn't know whether the boy she was following up the tree was big or not, but he knew her name.

    But I definitely want to see more.

  7. I have the impression that this is a dream sequence. If it is, then my confusion would probably be resolved by the following paragraphs. As it is, I'm very confused by the end of the second paragraph. The first paragraph makes it sound as if the main character doesn't know the other boy. He may not, but then in the second paragraph it says "My eyes don't see through the woods like his do." How would the main character know this? Other than that, it's very well written.

  8. i think if you broke up the first two paragraphs more (making smaller paragraphs), it would be easier to read and digest what is actually going on here.