Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop #3

Jennifer M Eaton has started a Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop in which writers post 250 words of their current Work in Progress and then hop around and critique everyone else’s snippets. To join,  click here to sign up and add your name and web site address to the list.

Thanks again to everyone who took the time last week to offer a critique of my work.

This week’s snippet follows immediately from the first 250 words featured last week from my novel Rani’s Right. It continues from the same paragraph. Again I haven’t rewritten anything since last week so it’s still the same old draft. This week’s snippet may actually explain some things or it may not.

Rani was my best friend (albeit a long lost one), she pulled me and my boyfriend from the wreck. Then she kept going back and grabbing people and helping them out of the inferno until she collapsed in a flaming heap. For two weeks from that day it looked like we were all recovering from an ordinary aircraft accident. Ordinary? Well, we all thought it was ordinary. Until Rani was shot.

I’ve just been staring at that last bit for 15 minutes now. I don’t think I’ve acknowledged that before. Directly, I mean, to anyone. Or myself. I haven’t said the words. Even in that first draft which is now sitting at the local rubbish dump.

Why am I writing this? Well, right at this minute it’s my therapy and I don’t care if it doesn’t make any sense. My mind spins faster than my hand can move so if I’m all over the place like a blowie round a cow pat, just bear with me. Long term, I don’t know. I guess I just want Rani to be remembered. She was my idol, my soul mate at a time when I felt strangled and isolated. I want to see justice done, too. I want there to be a record of her legacy. People need to know. I don’t even know who I’m writing this for. Me? My family? Rani’s family? I don’t know. No one in particular. At the moment it’s just therapy.

Please have a look at and, if possible, critique the work of these authors, while you’re here. look for this logo. It will take you to their latest critique post:Sunday Snippets

21 thoughts on “Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop #3

  1. caitlinstern

    Something’s off with “Rani was my best friend (albeit a long lost one), she pulled me and my boyfriend from the wreck.” Maybe break it into two sentences? Or add an ‘and?’ Or “Rani, my best friend, pulled me…”
    I’m confused by the phrase “until she collapsed in a flaming heap.” Was Rani on fire? I’m guessing no.
    I like the voice. I can sense the struggle to write it all down, and accept what happened. Especially the detail of throwing away the first draft.

    1. Richard Leonard Post author

      Yes, good point. The comma should either be a . or a ; or and. I think I’ll go with a .
      I’ve had similar feedback before about the flaming heap sentence. It’s a little more ambiguous than I expected.
      Thanks for the comments, Caitlin. 🙂

    1. Richard Leonard Post author

      That was my attempt at showing that she was on fire, rather than telling. And this did result in the coma. If I may paraphrase Sheldon Cooper from Big Bang Theory, “Just when I thought I had the hang of showing”! 😉 (he has a similar problem with sarcasm!)
      Thanks for the feedback!

  2. journeyofjordannaeast

    Getting better every week! I got that Rani was on fire, but I guess you have to go with the majority on that one. I must admit I have no idea what a “blowie in a cow pat” is though. Haha. But it didn’t take me out of the story so feel free to leave it if you’re attached to that line. 🙂

    1. Richard Leonard Post author

      Hmm. I thought it was reasonably clear without saying outright that she was on fire. Ah well, I’ll see what I can do.
      Ha ha! The “blowie round a cow pat” is a classic Australian-ism. A blowie is a blowfly (larger than your average house fly) commonly found in rural Australia, especially on farms etc. As are cow pats… That phrase should say a lot about where she’s from. 😉

      1. journeyofjordannaeast

        I like the fire thing as it is, so it’s up to you. The “blowie” line is fine then, if it alludes to her Australian heritage. Definitely leave it. Sorry, my only known Australian lingo comes from sterotypes like “Crikey” and “Shrimp on the Barbie.” 🙂

        1. Richard Leonard Post author

          I was aware that many non-Aussies might not pick up the Aussie-isms but they’re staying because it’s a strong part of her character. In fact she’s more Aussie than most so there’s even more reason. 🙂
          BTW, I don’t know anyone who puts shrimp on a barbie! 😉

  3. Ileandra Young

    Hi Richard, great to see you’re taking part again. 🙂

    I like that there is more detail now, though the sample still feels rambly. There are more details, now, which is wonderful, but that first paragraph feels cliched to me. Or contrived. It’s the ‘well we all thought it was ordinary’ that catches me, I’m afraid. I feel that you play with this a whole lot more if it was a bit more emotional. Despite the subject matter, I still feel like I’m reading a report of events, rather than the account of someone who was there.

    I feel like this is a stream of conciousness (I’m trying to remember if I’ve said that before) but I’m finding it distracting from the story.

    I do like that ‘blowie round a cow pat’ line though!

    This and the other snippets feels like an introductory phase; like you’re writing yourself into the story. I think, as you keep going and you find the true voice of the piece, you’ll find comments like mine fade off, because you’ll have a clear direction and each sentence will have a purpose.

    I hope you’ll keep going. 🙂

    1. Richard Leonard Post author

      Yes, the introductory phase is deliberate but whether that’s good or bad remains to be seen, I guess. Very shortly it does get into what happened to get her into that state of mind. For what it’s worth this is a first draft I’ve haven’t changed much and there are another 55K words following these. Talking about detailed, I like your responses, they are also very detailed! 🙂 Thanks!

      1. Ileandra Young

        I understand; first drafts are always those which need poking at the most. That’s why they’re the first! They’re also (some say) the best words to get critiques on, so I’m glad that my words help.

        I do try to give as much detail as I can; I’m hoping to take critiquing forward as part of my future business ventures (see latest blog post for details!) so these blog hop is useful on many levels! The practise does me good.

  4. Let's CUT the Crap!

    I feel the indecision fits here.
    I find it confusing about Rani collapsing into a flaming heap AND being shot? Was that after they ALL recovered? also why was “Rani was my best friend (albeit a long lost one).” Sounds odd to me.

    1. Richard Leonard Post author

      She’s a very confused and undecided woman, at the moment. Two weeks passed between the accident and the shooting.
      A best friend she lost contact with over the years, odd? Hmm. There may be reasons. But the wording may need cleaning up, I think.
      Thanks for the comments.


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