Young Writers Society

Home » Literary works » Novel / Chapter » Action / Adventure

E - Everyone

The Piling Of Bodies: Prologue

by AriesBookworm


   I gently place a small bowl of broth on the table for Esme. She looks at me happily and begins eating. I look at the thin shawl wrapped around her small, frail body and take a deep breath.

   "I have to go to a meeting. Go to bed once you finish your dinner." I say as I pat her head. 

   I walk outside into the crisp autumn air. I feel my stomach tighten, not from hunger, but from worry. The crops had failed this year. Meaning that if we don't figure something out, we're in for a rough winter. I think about Esme. She was born premature and was a sickly little one from the start. One sudden chill and she could be sick for a week. I pray we can figure something out. We can't handle a food shortage, not when we're already so low on food.

   I finally reach the church where the meeting is being held and push the large oak doors open. Already, there's a disagreement between Margaret, our leader, and Evan, the leader of the scouts.

   "Meg, we won't make it through the winter. If we send the scouts outside of the safe zone-"

   "Negative. There's a reason we have a safe zone. The last time we did that 50 men, women, and children died."

   "We'll lose more than 50 this winter if we allow the people to starve!"

   "We'll make it through this. If we just cut food rations down for the winter and look around the safe zone at the beginning of spring-"

   "The people won't make it." I interrupt. 

All eyes turn to face me. In truth, I want to say "Esme won't make it." but I can't allow them to think that my emotions get in the way of my thinking.

"We barely have enough food now. Can you imagine what winter will be like? I've seen this happen before, in my old group, people will turn against each other, sacrifice their own children, do whatever it takes to make sure they stay alive. We need a better solution."

Margaret narrows her eyes. She doesn't need to open her mouth to speak a thousand words. I know what she's saying, "You were an outsider, I allowed you and Esme into this group, and this is how you thank me?"

"Thank you, Rebecca." Evan says.

Susan, head of the medical team, clears her throat.

"I understand where you're all coming from. If people went outside the safe zone then it could result in multiple injuries and deaths. But at the same time, we can't let the people starve. If you remember correctly, Margaret, you'll know that the winter the scouts left the safe zone, no one in the group who stayed here died of hunger because the scouts did bring back food. I believe this is a risk we need to take."

Margaret looks around at us all and realizes she'd outnumbered on this decision.

"Fine. Send out your scouts. But when we have another mass death, it'll be you who explains it to the people." She says, looking dead at Evan.

"Understood."


Note: You are not logged in, but you can still leave a comment or review. Before it shows up, a moderator will need to approve your comment (this is only a safeguard against spambots). Leave your email if you would like to be notified when your message is approved.







Is this a review?


  

Comments



User avatar
1032 Reviews


Points: 103525
Reviews: 1032

Donate
Sat Nov 27, 2021 9:18 pm
MailicedeNamedy wrote a review...



Hi AriesBookworm,

Mailice here with a short review! :D

We are here in an exciting and well turned out beginning of an interesting story. You manage to arouse my curiosity for the story very quickly and to see what happens next. Nevertheless, there are still some minor points that are not so good.

But let's start; you have a great tone to start the story and to stay with it with an ease, while the plot moves forward and as a reader you already realise that there is a great concern. Most of all, I like that you don't get to know these problems that are there more clearly until the second half, and you could still assume that the beginning is a nice morning in the family.

Something that needs a little work is the sentence structure. Sometimes it limps a bit because the sentences are a bit too short and then do little to lift the tension or convey any kind of knowledge. Here, for example, at the beginning:

 I gently place a small bowl of broth on the table for Esme. She looks at me happily and begins eating. I look at the thin shawl wrapped around her small, frail body and take a deep breath.


The first paragraph is always the most important in a story, as it decides whether a reader will continue or not. You manage to open up some interesting questions here, which gives the story a great dynamic right away, but this also fades with the sentences.

I would try writing it like this: "I gently place a small bowl of broth on the table. She looks at me happily and starts eating. Esme's thin shawl wrapped around her small, frail body gives me a strange feeling and I take a deep breath."

In my example, we are not immediately told who the bowl is for, which is also a good way to keep the reader hooked a little longer because they want to know who the person is.

Here is another small example:

 I walk outside into the crisp autumn air. I feel my stomach tighten, not from hunger, but from worry. The crops had failed this year. Meaning that if we don't figure something out, we're in for a rough winter. I think about Esme. She was born premature and was a sickly little one from the start. One sudden chill and she could be sick for a week.


Here again, it seems as if you pose a question with your sentences and answer it immediately afterwards. This stops the reader, even though he knows the answer, because he doesn't have time to think about what it could mean. This is where you build up the tension, which until now could only be seen indirectly. If you rewrite it a bit or connect sentences, you can leave a much longer-lasting effect.

Nevertheless, I liked the beginning. I like the plot so far and I'm curious to see what happens next.

Have fun writing!

Mailice




User avatar
6 Reviews


Points: 52
Reviews: 6

Donate
Fri Nov 12, 2021 3:33 pm
savannah_ohh wrote a review...



"I feel my stomach tighten, not from hunger, but from worry. The crops had failed this year. Meaning that if we don't figure something out, we're in for a rough winter. I think about Esme. She was born premature and was a sickly little one from the start. One sudden chill and she could be sick for a week. I pray we can figure something out. We can't handle a food shortage, not when we're already so low on food."

I really like how we already start off with some suspense. You don't know what's gonna happen and the stakes are pretty high considering they're already low on food and Esme is sickly.

I finally reach the church where the meeting is being held and push the large oak doors open. Already, there's a disagreement between Margaret, our leader, and Evan, the leader of the scouts.

" "Meg, we won't make it through the winter. If we send the scouts outside of the safe zone-"

"Negative. There's a reason we have a safe zone. The last time we did that 50 men, women, and children died."

"We'll lose more than 50 this winter if we allow the people to starve!"

"We'll make it through this. If we just cut food rations down for the winter and look around the safe zone at the beginning of spring-"

"The people won't make it." I interrupt. "

I like how we're getting to see them trying to make a decision. I personally find it really interesting. What're they going to do? Who are the scouts and why did they send them outside?

"Margaret looks around at us all and realizes she'd outnumbered on this decision.

"Fine. Send out your scouts. But when we have another mass death, it'll be you who explains it to the people." She says, looking dead at Evan.

"Understood." "

I like the ending to this prologue. Overall, I think it did a really great job at hooking the reader. I have a lot of questions now and I can't wait to read more. The concept is really interesting and I'm very excited to see what will happen when they send the scouts outside. I'm also excited to see what will happen to Esme and the food shortage. Good job!!




User avatar
2875 Reviews


Points: 301545
Reviews: 2875

Donate
Fri Nov 12, 2021 6:56 am
HarryHardy wrote a review...



Good Morning/Afternoon/Evening/Night(whichever one it is in your part of the world),

Hi! I'm here to leave a quick review!!

First Impression: I'm really liking this start here. There's a couple of shaky transitions but there's this nice air of mystery that's present here and this choice seems like it'll be one with a lot of consequences here....and bad consequences at that.

Anyway let's get right to it,

I gently place a small bowl of broth on the table for Esme. She looks at me happily and begins eating. I look at the thin shawl wrapped around her small, frail body and take a deep breath.

"I have to go to a meeting. Go to bed once you finish your dinner." I say as I pat her head.

I walk outside into the crisp autumn air. I feel my stomach tighten, not from hunger, but from worry. The crops had failed this year. Meaning that if we don't figure something out, we're in for a rough winter. I think about Esme. She was born premature and was a sickly little one from the start. One sudden chill and she could be sick for a week. I pray we can figure something out. We can't handle a food shortage, not when we're already so low on food.


Ooof, well, we have ourselves quite a start here with things getting underway on what appears to be a pretty sad note there with how it seem these two are in pretty bad shape. Its setting up a pretty sad scene here and right away it does catch your attention as a reader here. A powerful start here to this prologue.

I finally reach the church where the meeting is being held and push the large oak doors open. Already, there's a disagreement between Margaret, our leader, and Evan, the leader of the scouts.

"Meg, we won't make it through the winter. If we send the scouts outside of the safe zone-"

"Negative. There's a reason we have a safe zone. The last time we did that 50 men, women, and children died."

"We'll lose more than 50 this winter if we allow the people to starve!"


Okayy...a little bit of shaky transition there I have to say. I feel like the scene change happens entirely too quickly here...but I do love this little conversation here. Its certainly very natural but it tells you quite a bit about this current situation and how people are dealing with it.

"We'll make it through this. If we just cut food rations down for the winter and look around the safe zone at the beginning of spring-"

"The people won't make it." I interrupt.

All eyes turn to face me. In truth, I want to say "Esme won't make it." but I can't allow them to think that my emotions get in the way of my thinking.

"We barely have enough food now. Can you imagine what winter will be like? I've seen this happen before, in my old group, people will turn against each other, sacrifice their own children, do whatever it takes to make sure they stay alive. We need a better solution."


Okayy...so it looks like the protagonist here is someone that gets a bit of a say in things...that's interesting to note down there. Also we can see some very clear evidence that she cares a lot for Esme.

"Thank you, Rebecca." Evan says.

Susan, head of the medical team, clears her throat.

"I understand where you're all coming from. If people went outside the safe zone then it could result in multiple injuries and deaths. But at the same time, we can't let the people starve. If you remember correctly, Margaret, you'll know that the winter the scouts left the safe zone, no one in the group who stayed here died of hunger because the scouts did bring back food. I believe this is a risk we need to take."

Margaret looks around at us all and realizes she'd outnumbered on this decision.

"Fine. Send out your scouts. But when we have another mass death, it'll be you who explains it to the people." She says, looking dead at Evan.

"Understood."


Hmm...well it looks like they just made a rather risky decision there that they also were unfortunately forced to make by the situation surrounding them. Its definitely creating a very interesting moment there and I think it makes for a lovely prologue here.

Aaaaand that's it for this one.

Overall: Overall, I think this is a pretty solid prologue for the most part. It certainly manages to hook a reader in pretty well and I'm definitely finding myself wanting to read more about what'll happen here. This choice is an especially interesting moment I think.

As always remember to take what you think was helpful and forget the rest.

Stay Safe
Harry





Life is the art of drawing sufficient conclusions from insufficient premises.
— Samuel Butler