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Gone Away Home: edited Chapter One

by VoraciousReader_545


I finally finished editing. I took a break from it; so it took a little long. So yeah, finally. Please critique and rate.:

A thick cloud of ash poured into the air. The house that had once stood tall amid the small development had crumpled to the ground, revealing a distressed girl, crying on the streets of New York City. She grabbed her mother’s hand, looking into her emerald eyes, with fear. Her brother, Travis, had rushed over to his father, who was buried with large amounts of wood. He looked at Deidre and embraced her with his bony hands.

“Deidre,” he cried a tear trickling down his cheek. “What are we going to do? Where are we going to go?”

Deidre shook her head; her eyes red and puffy. “I don’t know, Travis. None of the neighbors seem to like us; they’re always blaming us for everything. Our relatives would blame us for the fire and call us arsonists. I’m sorry, Travis but I have a feeling we’re going to be living on the streets for a long time.”

“You’re fourteen,” he said abruptly. “You could get a job!”

“Yeah,” she said. “Fourteen years old. You can’t get a real job until you’re sixteen. The most I could do now is rake leaves for the neighbors. And they never pay much.” Deidre reminded him.

“I could get a job.” He said.

“You?” she asked with a hearty laugh. “What makes you think that a fourteen year old couldn’t get a job, but a twelve year old could?”

“I could rake leaves for my friend.”

“That’s all really nice of you, Travis, but—” Deidre replied with a frown on her face.

“But what?” he asked.

“But that’s just not enough for us to live, anywhere.”

“Deidre, I miss them,” he said with an unhappy look on his face. “I really wish Mom and Dad were alive.”

“We all do.” Deidre whispered, clamping his hand. “But look on the bright side. At least we’ve got each other.”

He nodded. “I love you, Deidre.” He whispered laying his head on her shoulder. She smiled back but panicked when she didn’t see him. She looked down the street but saw nothing but a padlocked wooden door.

“What’s that?” she whispered to herself in awe.

“Come with me and you’ll find out.” A gruff voice replied.

“I need to find my brother.” Deidre protested.

“And that’s the way.” The man lifted her off the ground and opened the door.

Deidre struggled to escape from his grasp but couldn’t. She tried to see his face but it was shielded by a velvety black hood.

“Who are you?” she whispered but there was no response. She looked around but saw nothing but a thick cloud of ash.

Sooo... what do you htink? And what do I need to work on?

:roll: :roll: :roll:


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1062 Reviews


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Sat Jul 18, 2020 6:30 am
HarryHardy wrote a review...



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

Hi! It is Knight Hardy, here on a mission to ensure that every single work on here at least two reviews. You probably will never see this being that this is from 15 years ago but oh well...Imma do it anyway.

First Impression: It was a pretty interesting start there. Very mysterious and draws the reader right in to the story. We get a decent sense of our protagonist and the setting that this takes place in. And all of those things are great for the first chapter of a story.

Anyway let's get to it,

A thick cloud of ash poured into the air. The house that had once stood tall amid the small development had crumpled to the ground, revealing a distressed girl, crying on the streets of New York City. She grabbed her mother’s hand, looking into her emerald eyes, with fear. Her brother, Travis, had rushed over to his father, who was buried with large amounts of wood. He looked at Deidre and embraced her with his bony hands.


That does a great job of being a lovely description at the same time as instantly hooking the readers through these deaths. The one critique I'd have here is that throughout the rest of this chapter these two discuss the deaths of their parents, which appears to have happened mere minutes ago, very casually. For a 12 year old and a 14 year old they react surprisingly mildly to what should be a very traumatic event.

“We all do.” Deidre whispered, clamping his hand. “But look on the bright side. At least we’ve got each other.”


I don't see why she says "we all" there because it is just the two of them.

He nodded. “I love you, Deidre.” He whispered laying his head on her shoulder. She smiled back but panicked when she didn’t see him. She looked down the street but saw nothing but a padlocked wooden door.


So she never noticed the weight on her shoulder disappear.

Deidre struggled to escape from his grasp but couldn’t. She tried to see his face but it was shielded by a velvety black hood.

“Who are you?” she whispered but there was no response. She looked around but saw nothing but a thick cloud of ash.


Again a surprising lack of reaction. She just straight away does things logically. At this point she's acting like a seasoned secret agent that has witnessed many deaths and kidnappings and not like a fourteen year old girl.

Aaand that's it for this one.

Overall: It is really interesting as far the premise for the story goes. First the parents dying and then the brother disappearing work very well to get someone interested. The issue as I said earlier is that the emotion is not captured very well.

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

Stay Safe
Harry




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Sun Mar 06, 2005 11:17 pm
Supermal wrote a review...



I like it- it's pretty good, but I'm not really feeling the characters emotions, you know? It's hard to explain, but they just don't seem to be feeling anything. It's also hard to imagine what everything looks like. Add a little detail on the characters and scenery, and it would be great :D But I like how you described some other stuff, like the house crumpling the little things.





Memento homo, quia pulvis es et in pulverem reverteris (Remember, man, that you are dust, and you will return to dust)
— Genesis 3:19