Thursday, September 22, 2016

Talkin' Heads #5

TITLE: Tinsel in a Tangle
GENRE: YA Fantasy

Christmas elf, Tinsel, was woken by a reindeer tapping at her bedroom window, who’s told her he’s going to help her out of a mess she’s made:

Chip nudges the air with his muzzle. “So git dressed. Time’s a’wastin’.”

I rub my eyes, certain I’m still dreaming. “Dressed for what?”

“We’ve got somethin’ ta show ye in the stables.”

“Can’t it wait ’till morning?”

“Nay.”

“Am I going to get into trouble?”

“No’ if we do this right.”

“Do what right?”

“Quit the yakkin’, git dressed, and ye’ll find out.”

“Fine.” I snap the curtains closed and rummage through my dresser.

“Wear the warmest stuff ye got,” Chip adds after a moment.

I frown, pulling a thermal turtleneck over my head. “The stables aren’t that cold.”

“We’re no’ stayin’ in the stables.”

After adjusting the apron ties of my warmest dirndl, I shove open the curtains to glare at Chip. “I should tell my folks where I’m going, shouldn’t I?”

He makes a reindeer-grimace. “Grown-ups will put the kibosh on the whole thing. D’ye want ta change the truth behind these rumors or no’?”

Hope blooms inside my chest. “You’re taking me to the ravine?”

Chip tosses his head. “’Twas yer idea.”

“My idea involved me flying in on a SnoMo.”

“We reindeer want ta help.”

“Why?”

“Ye said ’twas fer the sake o’ Christmas. Reindeer are duty-bound ta protect and uphold Christmas.”

“They are?”

Chip rolls his eyes. “I dinna ken, but it has a noble ring to it.”

8 comments:

  1. The dialog is funny, the characters are likable and we're on a mission to save Christmas! I want more. The reindeer's dialect effectively distinguishes his lines from the elf's. As for suggestions, I wanted Chip's voice to sound muffled when Tinsel snaps the curtain closed.

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  2. The balance seems good, except for one part (starting with "after adjusting the apron ties") where four paragraphs in a row start with a beat, followed by dialogue. Maybe mix that up a bit? I think you're doing a good job with the scottish accent, though at times you may not need quite so much of it to get the point across.

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  3. The balance seems good, except for one part (starting with "after adjusting the apron ties") where four paragraphs in a row start with a beat, followed by dialogue. Maybe mix that up a bit? I think you're doing a good job with the scottish accent, though at times you may not need quite so much of it to get the point across.

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  4. I feel like maybe there's a little too much accent. I think accents are something you should introduce at the beginning of the conversation, then maybe remind us of every once in a while. With something in every line, I get a little bogged down having to "translate" the phonetic spellings. Having some of the accent, though, is fun and necessary, I think. I like the idea of a talking, Scottish reindeer.

    I'm not sure I parse the line, "D'ye want ta change the truth behind these rumor or no'?" Change the truth makes me think there's a truth and they're going to magically change it... are they just going to expose the actual truth?


    I do think Chip is a funny character, though. I like the line, "I dinna ken, but it has a noble ring to it."

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  5. Great tone. We get an excellent impression of Chip -- although the accent doesn't quite match the name to me that's just subjective.

    I think the pacing is off to me near the start. I'd erase the 'Can't it wait til morning pair' because I wanted to skip ahead when I reach there.

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    Replies
    1. Forgot to add. Is this really YA? If so, I wouldn't have the girl worry about her parents knowing where she is.

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  6. This is adorable. Be careful of overusing accents. This piece it was fun, but a whole book would be tiring. If Chip is a major character, I suggest trimming it back.

    I want to know what a reindeer grimacing looks like.

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