Wednesday, January 15, 2014

January Secret Agent #50

TITLE: Saving Grace
GENRE: Paranormal Romance

“Wipe that smile off your face and step away from the vibrator.” Undaunted by my request, the demon flashed a set of white teeth and continued to stare at me in satisfaction. I buried my face in my hands and tried not to throw the rest of my tuna salad sandwich at him.

A faint buzzing noise brought my head back up, seven inches of pulsating pink plastic whirring in front of my stunned face. My eyes followed the spinning item, anger growing with each undulation as the dildo-wielding co-worker drew attention to our little lunch table with his rock ‘em sock ‘em appliance.

It was Wednesday, the day Mel, my best friend and witch extraordinaire, decided long ago would be Hump Day in both name and deed. Lush foliage blossomed in potted plants scattered throughout the atrium of Quik Account, the soul-sucking building we worked in.

Benches lined the walls, offering a place to relax. Unless, of course, you had a best friend hell-bent—pun intended—on getting you laid by any means necessary.

Glass tiles formed the ceiling, letting in the sun’s warmth and natural light. It normally made me feel like a flower unfurling its petals for the first time, but today the heat fried me. The light wilted my blossom and sent me cowering into the leather of the booth as if I could sink into it and disappear from this scene.

“I was told human women like these.” Dark brows drew down over a pair of bright blue eyes.

12 comments:

Nicole said...

This is quite funny and you have a great voice. A demon with a vibrator is certainly an eye-catching way to start!

There were some places where I got confused about what was happening. Why is there a dildo in her office? Is Mel holding it or somebody else? More dialogue would help to answer these questions. If Mel is trying to get her laid, show us them talking about it, instead of just telling it.

To free up some more space for dialogue in this short opening, I think you could cut some of the descriptions, like the benches and the plants, or at least have your character interact with them so there's more of a reason for the descriptions.

That aside, I think this looks like a super entertaining read!

Nicole said...

OK, wait, I read it again and I get who's holding it. But it was still confusing. I think maybe tying demon and co-worker together in that first paragraph would help clear things up, because my first assumption was not that she worked with a demon. Sorry to be a little bit stupid while reading this!

keelaurow said...

I really love this world in which a demon, witch and human are working together in what appears to be a boring corporate job! I also enjoyed thinking she was somehow in danger at first, but the discovering the demon is actually just a teasing co-worker.
The setting descriptions were very distracting in their current placement. It is all good stuff, just try working it around to enhance your story and action, rather than what feels like strategic interspersing. One more thing: WHat is your hook. WHile I love the concept of this world and find it very funny, what is about to happen that will draw the reader in? I think this is a great idea and would love to see more.

fictionwriter said...

This is funny and could be great, but needs some revision, e.g.,

"Wipe that smile off your face..." is a bit cliche. Choose another?


show the demon's satisfaction, don't just tell us.

if his/her face is buried in his/her hands, how could she throw a sandwich, or even be holding one?

It's not the noise that moves his/her head, it's his, her neck.
Maybe, At the sound of buzzing, I snapped my head up to stare at...(whatever)

Not her eyes, but she/he followed the spinning stem.

The my eyes sentence is way too long and it's not clear who is angry; maybe clarify that?

The demon is his/her co-worker? This is confusing.

A dildo is a rock-em sock-em appliance? I thought it was a sexual tool and rock-em sock-em is cliched.

So her best friend is responsible for her being held by the demon? This is confusing.

Maybe put the benches closer to the beginning and more of a description of where we are and who's there and what the MC's goal is.

Again, why would she consider Mel a friend? Sounds pretty hostile to me.

This part really slows down the action: blend it in bit by bit with the sentences above. Glass tiles formed the ceiling, letting in the sun’s warmth and natural light. It normally made me feel like a flower unfurling its petals for the first time, but today the heat fried me. The light wilted my blossom and sent me cowering into the leather of the booth as if I could sink into it and disappear from this scene.

Whose Dark brows drew down? The subject is missing in this phrase.
What is the these human women are supposed to like?

MK Becker said...

I love the idea here. That said, I'd dump paragraphs 2 and 6 at this point - they're stuff we don't need to know to dive into the story and the situation. It would also clarify who's doing what to whom (or to what). I think it make sense to set up the action and conflict and then ease into the rich description.

C. M. Rosens said...

I loved the opening line and the follow on - but I agree that it's not that clear the demon is also the co-worker! Not my first assumption! I think because we all have our own default ideas as readers of what "a demon" looks like. So I automatically imagine a tiny little red thing with a tail and horns that's kind of part lizard part monkey sat on the table waving a dildo around. Then I get that ... oh I was so so wrong. *shame* So if you maybe got the co-worker thing in (and mentioned a tie?? Or something that implies humanoid in appearance? Unless he isn't?) earlier that would work!

That said, the writing is great and the premise really makes me want to read more. I too love Hump Day. ;)

Andrea Cooper said...

Nice opening. I would remove "I buried my face in my hands and tried not to throw the rest of my tuna salad sandwich at him." And just have something like "I fought the urge to throw the rest of my tuna salad sandwich at him."
The phrase of her burying her face in her hands while not throwing the sandwich sounds confusing to me.
Good luck.

Dawn Brazil said...

This is hilarious! Like other commenters I was confused about who was doing what. It took me a minute to realize that she was not in danger. I would keep reading.

Mary W. said...

This was fantastic! I love all the humor in it. I agree with the other commenters, it was a little confusing, but I did really like it and would definitely read more!

Good Luck!

Barbara said...

I thought it was a humorous beginning, but was stretched out too long. The MC makes her comment in the first line, and the demon doesn't reply until the last.

So why does the demon wait so long to reply? Because the MC has to describe the ceiling tiles and plants and benches and tell us about her friend and Hump Day, and meanwhile, the demon is sitting around twiddling his thumbs until the MC finishes. :-) You've stopped the story.

Perhaps start and finish with the demon before going into all your explanations, or do the explaining first, and then deal with the demon.

Or better yet, forget the explaining altogether and just let the story happen. You've chosen this moment to start the story, so why not show it? Let it play out from beginning to end and get in your backstory and explanations through action and dialogue somewhere else.

Secret Agent said...

Well that opening line is certainly fun and attention-grabbing! After that, though, it’s a bit confusing and hard to follow who is doing and saying what. The descriptions of the office are nice, but interrupt the flow of the action, and as some of the other comments mention, we don't get back to the demon for quite some time. I’d focus on the characters here and give us more of their interactions/dialogue up front.

Jackie Uhrmacher said...

Thank you, everyone! My apologies for the late thanks. My router decided it hated me so it refused to broadcast a signal. We've since made up. :)