Thursday, May 2, 2019

First 100 #25

TITLE: Before I Leave You
GENRE: YA Contemporary

It’s always so damn cold.

Bone-chilling, actually, for so many reasons. The thermostat Dad keeps on zero degrees, my "lack of meat on my bones” as his nosy paralegals would say. But this is the kind of cold where I can see my breath when I exhale, like I’m outside in January and not in my foggy bathroom, getting ready for the first day of school. It's a cold that makes every hair stand on end. That sends shivers through every part of me.

Only one reason for that kind of cold.



  1. The problem here is that your characters is telling us about the cold rather than experiencing it. Instead of describing the cold, I want to see him/her feel it. That will get me engaged with the character rather than you, the author.

    Good luck!

  2. I find this intriguing with the thread of cold running though and then the twist about Desiree, so it brings up story questions and makes me want me to read more. The only thing that got me a bit was that if this person is in a foggy bathroom, would this person actually be seeing his breath. (I’m only assuming the narrator is male here, because of Desiree, I suppose.) Or is this more metaphor. Also, I’d remove the commas between exhale and like and between bathroom and getting. Nice job.

  3. I agree with the above two points. One other point of confusion I have is that you say "for so many reasons" then "only one reason for that kind of cold". I get that your character is describing a different kind of cold, but I think that distinction would be clearer if you add a paragraph break when your character starts describing the different kind of cold. That way the sensations don't all blur into one.

  4. I'm not really feeling the cold as a physical thing. It feels very academic, like she's describing something she felt a long time ago, not something happening now. Maybe try and show how the cold affects her body rather than just telling us about it. As it is, she describes the cold with being able to see her breath, but then says she's in a steamy bathroom, which is not possible.

  5. I think too many words are focused on describing the temperature, and IF tis temperature is more related to something Paranormal, rather than just the weather, maybe they should be described on how unsettling it is making the character feel, "a cold that sends shivers..." it a generic kind of cold, so what makes is THE cold for her? The cold that is actually abnormal? I get it that it has to do with Desiree, but what makes it different from any other kind of cold. I think answering those questions might give you a sturdier voice. Best of lucks.

  6. I'm not sure where this storyline is going. I do like the cold imagery, but introduce us to the character more before weaving in the cold references. I'm intrigued by who Desiree is and her link to the cold.

  7. I was pulled in immediately! I have lots of questions right away (the good kind, like I want to read more!) I do agree with the comments about letting us FEEL the cold through the MC, but otherwise I would so keep reading. Good luck!!

  8. I agree with Holly. As is, the talk about the cold is just talk, and it goes on perhaos a sentence or two too long. If you show us the cold, make us feel it, and make it evident what kind of cold it is (it's winter and they have no heat? It's a paranormal kind of cold? Are they being ignoted by everyone else kind of cold?) so we get a sense of the type of cold it is.


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