Wednesday, October 9, 2013

October Secret Agent #27

TITLE: Robi's Flying Saucer Drive In

My name is Saffron and I live among tall trees and workaholic parents.

The sky is pretty blue out there and the clouds are whizzing by. It is six-thirty in the morning on my first Saturday of high school. I get up on my knees and look out my window to the big backyard. That pool looks good.

I open my dresser drawer and pull out my favorite suit, the one from Aunt Arrosa with the gold sailor hook on the hip and I throw my pajamas on the floor and pull it on. The hallway is quiet. I can hear my Dad snoring. Tabitha is curled up in front of the linen closet. She opens an eye then follows me down the carpeted stairs and out the dining room door. I run down the diving board and dive softly. Tabitha runs to the grass.

I hit the bottom with my fingertips and then turn and sweep with my hands through the turquoise water, it’s so blue it’s solid turquoise. I go up with my toes to the surface where I turn over and lie on my back.

This water is nice and warm. I lie on my back watching the birch tree leaves flicker back and forth on their branches. They are silvery in the back and are whipped around by the wind, but hold on. It was just last fall that I started working at Robi’s Flying Saucer Drive In.


  1. Tabitha is a dog, I take it. Seems like the better way to start this story is with the last line. School on Saturday may be important to the plot but I don't see how that and playing in the pool have to do with working in a drive-in. There just seems to be a lot of exposition and description and nothing going on. It's also a tad repetitive. You write "I lie on my back" twice with only one sentence in between. It's also not necessary to keep telling us that the water is turquoise.

    Also the last line feels out place in a paragraph about trees.

    Good luck with this! :)

  2. I agree with Krystal. There's a lot of descriptions, with scenes that contain no tension and no action.

    This is a story with great potential.

    Best wishes!

  3. I like the setting and there are parts that are interesting but also with the potential to be confusing: Tabitha's identity and the Saturday school concept.
    One suggestion would be to strive for less generic descriptors such as turquoise water.
    Overall, I wanted to read more!

  4. The voice here is very distanced and robotic. If your character is actually a robot, I guess that's good. If not, I think you need to inject some more human.

    Good luck!

  5. You start a lot of sentences with 'I' and then you throw in a few more in the middle of sentences for good measure. This gets very monotonous and makes the story seem very distant. Try reworking some of the sentences to get a better flow.

    Double turquoise in the fourth paragraph was repetitive.

    The first line doesn't work for me - tall trees and workaholic parents have nothing to do with the story you start to tell.

    There is nothing in this first 250 words to encourage me to turn the page. Saffron wakes up and goes for a swim - no sense of where we're going or what the story might be about. I think you might be starting in the wrong place.

  6. The opening sounds like a prologue to the real story which is set in Robi's. If that's correct, just start at Robi's.

  7. Working at a Saucer Drive-In sounds fun and quirky. It sounds like a place where some antics might take place. Since it’s the title, we assume this location and job plays a major part in the story. But what does it mean to the main character? Is she saddened by this memory or happy about it? Also, what kind of animal is Tabitha? (We hope she is an animal if she is curled up by the linen closet…?)

  8. At this point, it seems that nothing you've mentioned has any connection to the Flying Saucer Drive In. WHy not just start there?