Our final crit of the week comes from Huntress' Urban Fantasy, Of Oak and Dragons. She wants to know if this first page draws the reader into turning the page. Is it confusing or does the change in tense work?
When I found the skull, (for some reason I want you to write it this way: Id didn't tell anyone when I found the skull.) I didn’t tell anyone. Not because I was scared or shocked. I was six after all and stuff like that only fueled my imagination.
My dad thought I hadn’t seen it. (seen or found?) He’d have been sick with fear if he’d known. But coming face to face with a skull – so to speak - wasn’t the problem.
It was after that day. The dreams. Of being the hunted and worse.
Not counting the original owner, only my dad knew about the skull.
But he died soon after and couldn’t help me.
(I assume that this is many years after the finding of the skull. If so I think I want to know how long after. Like maybe say: Fifteen years later it isn't my face reflected in the pool...) It isn’t my face reflected in the pool of rainwater or my boots walking through the dry leaves. The hands that caress the iron weapons and trace the molded grips are long-fingered. Callused, not soft like my hands.
Movement from my left makes my belly flutter. They are hunting me.
They are here.
The emotions are the same, of desperation and regret. Of defeat and unmet purpose. And my screams when utter failure is all I can expect… I wonder if italicizing might help make it clear that this is a dream...or is it a memory?
…and waking in my bed.
With a groan, I fought my way out of the twisted, damp sheets.
Once again, the dreams had returned crushing my hope that I had seen the last of them. An irritation now that I was in college and on my own. (I hope he(?) has his own place...just sayin' )When I was a kid, sleepovers were nonexistent. One scream-fest was all it took to seal my fate with school friends. Looks of ‘there goes a crazy person’ followed me until I graduated from high school. Saluting them with a mental middle finger helped me to cope.
I think this IS an intriguing first page. It's also got voice and the two combined would make me read on. And I saw the reference to college in the last paragraph but I still want it noted when we are once we move into the future. I like clear transitions. But that's just me so I do hope everyone will chime in and offer their opinion as well.