Tuesday, July 13, 2010

3 #34 amongdahlias (YA contemporary romance)

Riding to school with Max Holden is only slightly less traumatizing than riding the big yellow bus.

I remind myself of that fact every morning when I cross the lawn from my front yard into his, headed for his already-running F-150. You’d be colder at the bus stop, I think as my feet crunch through frosty grass. Bus fumes are worse, I tell myself, hurrying through clouds of stinky exhaust that pour from his truck’s tail pipe. The bus doesn’t even have music, I consider as the unmistakably twang of classic country leaks from the cab.


  1. This is an interesting excerpt. You've added sensory details, which help ground the story--the crunch of frosty grass, the stink of exhaust, the annoying twang of country music. When I first read the first sentence, I remember thinking it sounded like a very young MC; seeing now that this is YA, I have to reconsider. I think what made me think MG was the phrase "big yellow bus." It sounds like something a younger kid would say, or how a younger kid would describe it. Why not just say "...than riding the bus"?

    And when I saw the 2nd sentence, I thought it was science fiction, because I (duh, am I the only stupid one?) had no idea that an F150 was a vehicle--it sounds more like an airplane or a jet fighter to me. You may risk losing some of your readers' comprehension with that one, although you DO say truck a few sentences later--which helps immensely. I like the music "leaking" from the cab, by the way. You might ramp up the sensory imagery for the "stinky" exhaust, which tells us a bit but could be expanded. What does it smell like? Even nauseating would be a more colorful adjective than stinky. Anyway, I'm curious as to whether she falls for this Max guy later in the story, or if he's just a stepping stone to the true romance later on.

  2. Carol took the words right out of my mouth. For some reason, "big yellow" made me stumble. Also, I know what an F-150 is but I can understand that some teenagers may not. Why not state "Ford"?

    I like the voice a lot and would definitely keep reading! Good job :)

  3. Thanks so much for the feedback! It's so incredibly helpful! I did have to laugh; I think this is the first time my writing has ever been used in the same sentence as the words "science fiction." I'll definitely make the adjustment there. :)


Tell us what you think. We'd love to hear from you! :)