Tuesday, April 15, 2014

First Line Grabber Round 2 #10

TITLE: The Cray
GENRE: YA Fiction

Minutes before the Turney, Union Square had the energy of a hornet’s nest trapped under a bucket. Heavily armed Constables skirted the crowd, their stiff grey uniforms looking miserable in the sweltering mid-day glare. One mean looking Consy eyed Palov and me pretty good.


  1. I liked this opening sentence. Putting the hornet's nest under a bucket takes something that might have been a cliche and freshens it up. But the next sentences are a little concerning.

    First, I'm floundering about where we are. Is Union Square a real place or is this an imaginary location? I looked to the genre for a hint, but YA Fiction doesn't tell me much. Is it contemporary (in which case I'd like to know which real-world city we're in)? Or is it fantasy or sci-fi with an invented location?

    Second, as the sentence is written, the stiff grey uniforms are miserable, but I think you mean the constables in their stiff grey uniforms are miserable. That can be fixed with just a bit of rearranging.

    I like the voice of the last sentence, and I'm glad to finally get to the MC. You could give it even more punch by moving it down to its own paragraph.

  2. I like it though I feel a bit lost. I don't know what the Turney is, which is ok, but now I don't know what a Consy is.

    I'd read on but would need grounding soon.

  3. Well, you've lost me for now. Your first sentence starts things out with a really cool image, but then you don't flesh it out any. In fact the "...looking miserable in the sweltering..." seems to contradict all of your energy in the first sentence.

    Also, what exactly does a miserable uniform look like? If you mean that the constables look miserable, then that *also* seems to be contradicted by the "...mean looking..." in the third sentence.

  4. I think this opening captures the tone and language of a child narrator. It seems to me that turney is short for tournament and consy is short for constable.

    I don't find it problematic if the reader does not know every detail about the setting or the main character in the first few paragraphs.

  5. I agree that your first line shows energy which the second line kind of dims. Maybe add an adjective before "crowd" (roiling??) to keep up the tension.

    I figured out Turney easily enough, but Consy stopped me. I actually read it as "Consy-eyed" at first. A hyphen in "mean-looking" would help. Also in "heavily-armed."

    As others have said, the constables look miserable, not the uniforms. Easy to fix.

    I, too, would like a hint as to when and where this is.