Thursday, February 1, 2018

First Kiss #2

TITLE: Redefined
GENRE: YA Contemporary

High school seniors Cat and Adam are on their second date. The last time Adam brought Cat home, her overprotective father interrupted their almost kiss goodnight by shining a mag light into Adam’s truck. Shockingly, Adam asked Cat out again, and this time, he’s a little wiser…

Before we got to my driveway, Adam pulled off to the side of the road. Dark shadows of cows moved slowly in the pasture next to his truck, but otherwise, there wasn’t anyone around to bother us.  He shifted into park, cut the engine, and turned off the lights. When he looked over at me, his eyes caught the dim light from the dash, and they looked huge, hopeful.

“Look, you can see Capella from here,” he said.

He hadn’t stopped the truck because of a star.  I pressed my hands against my legs so he wouldn’t see them tremble. I was horribly unprepared for what was coming. “Um, thanks, I had fun learning about photography, and the movie was good too, and …”

Half smiling, he reached over and touched his finger to my lips. “Sssh.”

My mouth stopped moving, but everything inside me raced.

He inched closer and dropped his finger.

I closed my eyes.

When he leaned in to kiss me, our noses bumped together, and I pulled back, proving my gigantic lack of experience in the kissing department. I opened my eyes, considered bailing on the whole idea, but Adam tilted his head and tried again.

His lips were softer than I expected, and I didn’t pull away.  At first I couldn’t breathe, and I didn’t know where to put my hands, but after a while, after I quit worrying and just let myself feel, it was so easy for us to fuse together.


  1. This is very sweet. I like how you show how nervous Cat is by her actions. I think it unfolds in a very natural way. I love the last paragraph, the bit about where she quit worrying and just let herself feel. Nicely done!

    The only thing I would change is where you say '...proving my gigantic lack of experience in the kissing department.' Could you say something like 'proving my inexperience in these kinds of things'? Overall, I thought this was a nice scene.

  2. I absolutely love a good awkward first kiss scene and I like that they didn't nail it right on the first go. :) Her not knowing where to put her hands was perfect as were the other little details to show the awkwardness of it for her. Compared to the great awkward showing of the first try and even the second, the last sentence left me a little disappointed - I want more on how they "fuse together." BUT I'm going to trust that you show that in the ensuing paragraphs. :) This was really great! I enjoyed the lead-in too. :)

  3. I love the awkwardness of this scene, how she doesn't know what to do or where to put her hands. It's sweet and romantic. When he says that she can see Capella, I wanted to see him point somewhere. And she doesn't react to that statement, other than to say that he hasn't stopped there to look for a star. That seems kind of self-assured for someone who's so inexperienced to think. I love the last line, except for the "it was so easy for us to fuse together" part. Honestly, the rest of the sentence doesn't need it, and I think it dulls the impact of an otherwise fantastic sentence. I too, hope that more of that beautiful showing you have going on in the rest of this piece happens after that. Thanks for being brave and posting this for all of us to read.

  4. This is good but I think it would be stronger if you did a bit less telling. For example, "I was horribly unprepared for what was coming" and "after I quit worrying and just let myself feel" -- these are both telling your characters emotions rather than showing them through her internal monologue.


  5. I enjoyed reading the lead up to this story. It sets the tone for the next kiss nicely. I really liked how he looked at her with huge, hopeful eyes. It gave me the first kiss warm and fuzzies. You did an excellent job describing the quiet rural setting. As a reader, I get a good sense of her nervousness too. Nice job on her reactions.

    I was a bit thrown off when he shhhed her. It made him seem bossier than I thought. I read the line twice. You did soften it up a bit by showing his half smile, but I was expecting him to say something to ease her nerves. What could you say that would bring out his feelings about the kiss more? Is it “Shhh, I’m nervous too” or more a joke like “Shhh, we might not have too much time before your dad comes out with a flashlight again” wink, wink. Ignore this comment if he is in fact, a bossy alpha hero!

    This sounds like a fun story. Nicely done.

  6. This is a very sweet moment. To bring the reader closer into the experience, I would be a little more active in sharing sensory details. Other than his lips being softer than expected, what else is the POV character experiencing?

    Right now, this scene is telling what happened and the pacing is good. The sentences lend to the pacing well. But we need to experience this with the character and for that we need a little more sensory detail.

    The way the scene ends now, it’s “closed door” and doesn’t get into detail about how the POV character figured out how to breathe, how Cat figured out where to put her hands, and what she actually felt.