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Monday, October 22, 2012


Last time I asked for your first pages and this was one I didn't have time to crit but promised to post next. However, I'm going to do things a tiny bit different this time. Instead of me showing you my comments first, I want to see what you guys have to say first and then I’ll post my crit tomorrow. I’m willing to accept two more first page or single page submissions this week if anyone is interested. 

This is the first page of Brooke Busse’s Upper YA/NA light sci-fi, THINKING OF YOU.

To save them.

The Enclosure stood alone as if the other buildings were afraid of catching its disease. Hell, I was afraid of catching its disease. Waving grass went on forever, broken only by the long road connecting the Enclosure to the rest of the world. And the two of us. Crouching so our borrowed white uniforms wouldn’t be seen. Watching and waiting.
“Rebbsie. Look.” Tass pointed, indicating a box truck puttering down the road. The food shipment. Monitoring the Department’s records had paid off. Boarding the truck far enough away  from the building would keep the eye level cameras that bordered the road from seeing us. It was our way in.  Our first step in saving the last living members of our species, the Controllers. Their name for us. We preferred Trols.
My body reacted instantly, knowing the plan before I did. Ground flew under my feet as I ran. My legs stretched, the muscles pulling taut. It felt wonderful after squatting in the grass for so long. Strands of my dark hair flew in my face and I shook my head, trying to clear my field of vision. The pouch that hung from my neck thumped against my chest. Without looking, I knew Tass was behind me just as, without me telling her, she knew what I was preparing to do.
We were going to hitch a ride.
The truck sped toward us. I could see the driver’s face. He was a few years younger than me, bobbing his head to the music blaring from his speakers, his eyes hooded. He hadn’t noticed us yet, but he could at any moment. After all, we were running right at him, our path forming a forty-five degree angle with the back of the vehicle. If he spotted us, hiding was out of the question; neither one of us was a senses Trol with the ability to control what he saw, and the nearest shelter was the Enclosure. So, he needed to feel it was okay for us to be there. Though, for all he knew, it was. Still. He had to relate us to something normal. Easy. When you can manipulate thoughts.
I motioned for Tass to get behind me. The rhythm of her footsteps changed as she slowed, falling back.  I waited until their beat again lined up with mine before shooting a wave at him, the pulse of it gathering at the base of my skull, the pressure lifting at my right temple. [Check out that jogger. Man, she’s hot. Maybe I should take up jogging. Bet it’s a nice view from the back.] Not exactly my style, but the thought had to match the mind “thinking” it. In this case, his.


Charity Bradford said...

Brooke, I love the changes you've made! You've done a much better job of world building here and there is more voice to this first page.

I don't know that anything pulled me out, I was just so excited to see how far you've brought this. Great job and keep up the good work!

My only thought is you probably don't need the last sentence as it's telling and we can guess that's she tailoring the thought to what she thinks the boy would think on his own.

Angela Brown said...

There was only one line I had to go back an re-read: "My body reacted instantly, knowing the plan before I did." Once I went back to read it the second time, I understood it's meaning. Not sure I would suggest a change, but wanted to make you aware as it was the only thing that gave me pause.

That's it. I haven't had a chance to see what it was before, but what it is now is a strong story that puts me in that crouched position, anxious and waiting with the characters. Great writing.