Post by nooneofconsequence on May 25, 2017 8:51:47 GMT -5
Your writing is lovely.
The first line, while not really a hook, does a lot of work. In one sentence you open multiple questions and tell us a lot about the world without really telling.
You do a lot of characterization in little time, which is great. The last line of the third paragraph, where it speaks directly of her non-fear of exile is a bit clunky compared to the rest (it's not *bad*, it just doesn't have the beauty of the rest of it.)
I really dislike the use of natives. Not for any kind of social reason, but because it is a word that already carries connotation and a picture in our language. I think, given your world building, it would do you well to develop a term specific to your story, that you can define without any preconceptions.
And the last sentence just feels way out of place. We don't even know that the other natives are there, and they're already taking action. And their glares are hostile but cooling when we didn't even know about the hostility. So it feels rushed, that line, which is in contrast to your writing style which is more lyrical and paced.
If you don't get in, don't despair. Not all books are cut out for first page contests. You've got a style, and you shouldn't alter that to try to fit a certain format. Make your own mold.
Possibly it's all very subjective, but I'd say the feedback I get is around 75% negative, at least, and often strongly so. Or maybe that's just par for the course, I have no idea.
It probably doesn't help that I find query letters utterly impossible. I know everyone says this but the format of queries doesn't do me any favours; the point of the MS is to explore perception, so it has 5 POVs, and that's precisely the sort of thing queries aren't suppose to include.
I'm torn on the natives thing. The Calaani are effectively imperial, and do oppress them. That said, it may not be the best word at that point--it's not one Nefral would use, since it's slightly derogatory.
Last Edit: May 25, 2017 13:17:29 GMT -5 by Nycteris
"Where shall the word be found, where will the word Resound? Not here, there is not enough silence."
I'm not specifically concerned with overuse of description, I think most of it works here, and the style is consistent. I think it is more WHAT you linger on that I'm a little uncertain about. For example, what exactly is the color of cowardice? Typically we associate yellow (or at least we used to) but I think you were going for something more metaphorical here, I'm just not sure it works. The other aspect I'm not sure about is the amount of time you spend driving home the idea that this protagonist is an outsider, outcast, down on luck type of character. I think we get enough of that sense even before the whole collecting seashells part. I do like your writing overall, though, and think you have a style that would lend itself to world building and description. Good luck.