Reflections on Writing the Beginning Chapter
As a writer of the first chapter of my first fictional novel, I can see the advantage of being excited about the plot. Writing is a lonely self absorbing process; I need an emotional clasp to keep my fingers moving in response to flowing thoughts. In daily life there so many detractions, attractions, and necessities that take place. When an inspiration comes to mind I need to write immediately, so the presence of pen and paper are always necessary for that constant fleeting thought; An idea will fly away in a second, similar to quail exploding at the shadow of a coyote.
–Richard Milleville, a/k/a Duke
The lead, Jacob Dunlap got inside the reader by his thoughts and feelings. His moral compass, honor, is unlike those around him, and it comes out abruptly.
== A must read novel of passionate characters that all need and want something. A must read for those who enjoy Kindle.
— Richard Milleville
I provided another copy to Ed, an elderly retired neighbor. Ed got a thrill out of reading it and stayed up most of the night for the read. He then went through it all making changes and comments. He prefers short choppy sentences. He wanted to change the stare of the snake’s eyes to Caleb instead of the heat supply. He was not familiar with the old novel, The Last of the Mohicans. Also Ed wanted to put in sentences with colons and semicolons which are not compatible with fast paced commercial fiction.
My response to his comments:
My research shows that snakes see prey only in terms of the degree of heat from parts of a body so that will remain. The Last of the Mohicans was a favorite book of mine from childhood and remains so. The use of semicolons and colons should be minimal on commercial fiction. I thought the quoted part was very appropriate for this book for obvious reasons. I was delighted that he enjoyed it so very much that he lost sleep over it. He spent a great deal of time in his review of it and it is very detailed. His responses reveal that an older reader is very interested in a complex topic that has a lot of spark.
==Richard Milleville, a/k/a Duke
Comment on novel to be published on Kindle
Here is my critique, overall I really like it!
There was a great opening scene in this story which involved one of the potential main character’s death. It immediately roped me in and gave me a sense as to where the story was going. There did not seem to be a lot of unnecessary things at this stage. At the end of the first chapter there would seem to be two leads, Jacob and Daisy. Both of them fit in with the setting both in terms of their employment and speaking inflection.
The tone seems to fluctuate between lusty and depressed early on, and while later this might work I think at this stage you want a clear depressed tone; the husband just dies now isn’t the time to go into his wife’s assets. The narrator’s appreciation for her form can come in later.
The unknown narrator works. The word choice is spot on for the story. Scenes work well, I’d say don’t force a segue when you just break the chapter off and start a new one.
I definitely get the sense act one is over; it’s time for Jacob to find a job and Daisy to avenge her husband without law enforcement to help.
Don, SMU English major, Dallas, Texas
Richard Milleville has written an extremely original action packed novel. The beginning shows the evil serpent in a church. It viciously kills an innocent man. Thus, this act unveils the characters and plots through their reaction to it as Daisy, wife of the victim, is shown as a strong character rising to the challenges that are developing. Jacob, the widows’ best friend helps her as much as possible.
The plot depicts the struggle between evil and good with events, and characters who overcome evil forces, and how these divine characters challenge them. This is a well thought plot with all the elements that make one not want to put it down.
It has been a pleasure reading your manuscript. What a wonderful imagination.
PS: Connie and I read this out loud to each other – what fun!
Mada & Connie, San Antonio, Texas residents read the story by candlelight; the electricity, internet, phone, and air-conditioning were out for five days in that very hot humid city.
“Successful writers are not the ones who write the best sentences. They are the ones who keep writing. They are the ones who discover what is most important and strangest and most pleasurable in themselves and keep believing in the value of their work despite the difficulties.”
“Every writer needs a b.s. detector.”
“True happiness is only achievable by helping others meet their goals, even aspirations that are beyond your imagination. Others may have more insight into the future.”
“Today I yearn; to write about what I have yet to learn.
To follow the quest of an inquisitive mind; to see what else I can find.
To stretch the mind like a fully drawn bow; And bring the data down like ducks in a row.”
“Beware of honey bees, you could be stung more than once; this sting can be physically by the swarm, and economically by the cleanup. It is sweetness that you can do without.”
–Richard Milleville, Dukes Quotes