Thursday, September 22, 2016

Talkin' Heads #22

TITLE: Chinchilla Dreams and Beauty Queens
GENRE: MG Contemporary

Frankie Lee Parker has long list of worries. Money for the beauty pageant, disappointing Mom and Dad, Fiona and her purple van, and Uncle Donny in a jail cell. And now Kate... 


The bedsprings squeaked and the shadow of my sister tiptoed across the room, shoes in hand.

“Where are you going?” I whispered.

She froze. “None of your business.”

“You’re going to meet Eddie, aren’t you?”

“No. I’m going outside to get some fresh air.”

“The window’s open. The air’s fresh in here. You going to make out?”

“Frankie! ‘Course not. We’re going to talk about our future.”

Yeah. Right. I wasn’t dumb. I knew what boyfriends and girlfriends did when they snuck out at night.

“Kate, don’t get…like Hannah Watson.” Hannah dropped out of school right after Christmas, before she started showing too much.

“Frankie! You mind your own business. And don’t you dare tell Mom or Dad.”

“I’m not a tattletale.” And I wasn’t. But as I lay awake I added my sister to my list of worries. 

My eyes didn’t close until she slipped back into our room a couple hours later.



  1. Great job on the dialogue. I just have a few suggestions for other spots. First, I think 'shoes in hand' should go after 'sister' in that first sentence.

    Also, in the next to last line, I feel like something is missing in the sentence 'But as I lay awake, I added my sister to my list of worries.' (needs a comma too) I can't really pinpoint what's missing, but maybe some other thought. What's he worried about specifically? More than just the fact that she could get pregnant? It's not completely clear to me. Otherwise, nice job!

  2. Nice conversation between two sisters. I get the idea that the younger is the more responsible of the two. As I am unsure of the age of the narrator (other than MG), I wonder if 'before she started showing too much' is something she would really be aware of, or is she just parroting what she heard her sister or mother say?

    I think you do need a comma after 'As I lay awake, ...'

  3. By the dialog and set up I am guess that Frankie is about 8 or 9 and the older sister is 16.

    The "shoes in hand" could also go after "none of your business"

    This reminds me of some of the old "sister of the bride" sort of stories with the age gap in sisters who share a room.

  4. Great segment here. It's always the younger ones that are more responsible!

    There's something odd about the first sentence. It sounds like the shadow is carrying the shoes for the sister.

    In this line "before she started showing too much," I think you can cut 'too much'.

    The second time the sister say mind your own business. I'm thinking the response might me more like "I'm not Hannah" or "I'm not stupid."

  5. This is really good- so smoothie and realistic.
    Perhaps you could add, " list of worries right above ___." But you may detail the list later.
    Good job!

  6. Love the first line, and the dialog is excellent -- except for the 'Frankie!'s. Both of them feel out of place to me, especially with the exclamation points.

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