Wednesday, March 30, 2016

March Secret Agent #4

TITLE: A Deadly Grind
GENRE: Adult - Mystery
A Deadly Grind

“What are you doing here?”

            “We need to talk.”

            “We’ve talked already, I’m done. I’m tired of all of it; you always thinking you’re entitled to a chunk of what I rake in.”

            “I am entitled, you’re using my idea; in fact ideas is more like it. You couldn’t come up with an original concept if your life depended on it.”

            “You’re so full of s***!”

“Am I? Look around you; ninety-nine percent of this little ‘business’ came from me!  I set it up. I did the research. I figured all the angles.”

“You’re crazy! I put in my full share on this plan just like you. I don’t owe you a dime!”

“Ha! Now you’re the crazy one! What about that deal you’re trying to get off the ground?

“Hunh? What d’ya mean?”

“You know damn well what I mean!”

“Oh, yeah…well…I’m the one with the connection to that…”

“Which you wouldn’t have made without all my early leg-work! I expect half of all profits…and not a penny less!”

“I’m not giving you a thing. Now get the hell outta here before I…wait, what are you doing? Put that down!”

No! I’ve had my fill of you and your bullshit.”

“You won’t use it…not on me…you don’t have the bal…Ahh! Stop! Okay. Okay!

“Too late for that.”

“No. Really. We can talk. Fifty percent. You got it!”

“Why would I settle for half, when I can have it all?”


  1. Hey there. I think the dialogue is quite strong, however it is only dialogue. You haven't constructed a dynamic scene to go along with this dialogue; to make it truly flow. Furthermore, I have a feeling the first person is female and the second male, but I'm not certain. There is no, "he said" or "she said" dialogue tags. I think your writing has a realistic flow to it. The dialogue is easy and quick to read, however there needs to be action/a little narrative to provide your readers with a moving illustration of what you're trying to show.

  2. Immediate conflict is a good thing, but I'm not caring enough about the characters involved at this point to be really invested. Maybe if you added some short descriptions of the speakers in between the dialogue lines, we would start getting to know them? That way we have tension plus a connection to the story/voice of the MC. :) I want to pick a side!

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Starting with dialog is hard because we don't have any sense of who is talking. There is no setting to ground us. That this is a mystery, we assume it starts with a murder and that's what comes next, which is too predictable for me.

    The dialog is realistic. Maybe too realistic. It has a linear feel. I was waiting for the surprise, but it's not on the page. I think this an okay beginning but I'm not hooked yet.

    I think you need to show who the MC is and give a tiny snippet of his/her life before we see this scene. I think you need to develop the setting here. Right now I don't even know their genders. There are no physical cues. Hope this helps. Good luck.

  5. Ugh. Your use of all dialogue doesn't work for me..for all the reasons others critters have expressed above. I once read a suggestion to start your first draft with all dialogue to see where the characters are headed, then add all the other ingredients to round out the story line. Perhaps that could work for you in your next edit. Good luck.

  6. I'm lost. I don't know if you were going for a Cormac McCarthy type of minimalism or not but this didn't work for me. I'd suggest reading McCarthy or some Charlie Huston to see how the pros do it. Hope this helps. (I hate giving just negative feedback, but some of the best advice I've been given in writing and in life really sucked to hear.)

  7. I'm afraid that this opening really doesn't work for me. Dialogue needs outside markers of action, pacing, and tone to really be effective. Having a wall of dialogue with no other writing is confusing and difficult to read.

    I get the sense that you only included dialogue because this is the murder scene and you don't want to reveal the participants. If that is indeed the case I'd say first that you don't automatically need to include a murder scene for a mystery to be successful--many have them, but many only show the body. It may be in your best interest to cut this scene. However, if you decide you really want or have to include a murder scene in your story, then you have to approach it a different way. Provide some details, some setting, while keeping the participants' identities obscured.

    I hope this has been helpful! Thank you for your entry.