Weekend Writing Warriors: Dex and Lilith

It’s that time of week, and here’s another Weekend Writing Warriors post:

It’s simple and fun. Sign the linky list with your name, blog url and email address on Mondays, 8:00 AM EST. Each week, the list remains open until Saturday, 11:59 PM. Then on Sunday, post 8 sentences from a current writing project, published or unpublished. Visit other participants and offer opinions, critiques, support. Writers hanging out with writers, a good time with a great group of people.

This passage features Dex with his wife Lilith.  They just attended Richard’s funeral, and Dex is noticeably affected by it.  At first he plays it off as mourning the death of someone whom he considered a father figure, but it’s obvious that he has much more on his mind:

Lilith sat down on an old swing, not caring that the rusted chains and cracked leather would soil her dress.  She looked up to Dex with big doe’s eyes, the kind of eyes she gave him when she wanted the truth out of him, and repeated, “Talk to me.”

Either the eyes worked, or he already intended to tell her everything, but he did.  He told her about the pictures of Cynthia, about what Mary Fielding told him, and about what Jim said at the prison.  He told her about every lie and inconsistency he came across.  And he confided in her his suspicions, about how most Captains before him came to mysterious or violent ends.  He feared Richard may have died for similar reasons, and he could be next.

“I never should have accepted this promotion,” he said.

Since this excerpt references moments that I haven’t shown on this blog, I’ll pick one of them for next week.

Thanks for reading!

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10 thoughts on “Weekend Writing Warriors: Dex and Lilith

  1. I liked the first line a lot, “Lilith sat down on an old swing, not caring that the rusted chains and cracked leather would soil her dress.” It’s picturesque and it sets the scene. Also, there is a contrast between Lillith and the scenery, which sort of amplifies her purity and naivety, or that is how she came off in this snippet. I’m interested in Lilith’s reaction after he tells her everything. And you’ve piqued my curiosity about who is killing them, or if Richard is just being paranoid, but I’m guessing he has a good reason to worry.

    This is my opinion, but I don’t think you need this line, “Either the eyes worked, or he already intended to tell her everything, but he did.” If you would add something to his speech like a sigh or he’s reticent at first, but then the words come spilling out, that would imply the same thing. It’s always a balance between showing and telling. If you show too much than the reader doesn’t know what the heck is going on, like in Faulkner’s “The Sound and the Fury.” He did all showing, and I couldn’t even understand it with Cliff Notes XD I don’t know the context of this snippet in your story, so maybe that line is needed? It’s up to you of course 😉

    1. Thanks for your feedback! This is a newly written scene compared to other chapters, so I’m going to have to take another look at it in the future once I have fresh eyes.

  2. Oh, intriguing. I’ve got many unanswered questions…so I’ll be looking forward to the next snippet to see if I can sort things through : )

  3. I love the way the scene was set with her sitting on the swing. The descriptions is great! I want to know more about this job and why he thinks taking it was a bad idea. Great snippet…

  4. First off, I want to tell you that this is wonderful writing with great syntactic variety and flow; however, even great writing can potentially become greater. I like the first sentence because it shows her mood, but perhaps there is a stronger verb than “sat down.”

    I love the idea of describing her eyes, but you might not want to label them “doe eyes” because it is cliché. Just saying eyes that wanted the truth would be good enough.

    With the second paragraph, I wonder whose point of view this story is being told from. If it’s omniscient, the narrator knows why he told. If the pov is the woman’s, you need to focus more on “her listening to” rather than ‘he told her.” Knowing that she doesn’t care about the wonderful way you described the swing, it can’t be his point of view, but then again you stated what he feared, so you are head hopping. Therefore, my suggestion would be to decide the pov and stay within that person’s head, unless of course your editor wants omniscient, in which case you would state why he told rather than wonder if it was the eyes or already planned. I’ve found that most professionals want a clear point of view. Does that make sense?

    I still think this is an interesting set up to a story and I love the description that you so skillfully use.

    http://joycelansky.blogspot.com

    1. Thank you very much for the kind words and feedback. POV is actually one of the major issues I’m trying to tackle with this round of edits so thanks for pointing this out.

  5. This whole scene works, and it works well. I agree with some of the other comments that the first lines are particularly strong, but I don’t think there’s anything I’d change from the rest of it.
    It’s clear that the second paragraph is written differently because he does a great big waffley info dump, a lot of which the reader will already have worked out by this point in the story (I’m assuming). It is skimmed over so that you can get to the part where he reveals his epiphany about his job (he shouldn’t have taken it), and we see a bit more of his character.
    Once again, really like it, don’t think you need to change a thing. Looking forward to reading the next bit.

  6. I love the description. The whole scene is just beautiful, and I like the closeness between the characters. It’s nice to have characters who can actually trust each other, not just be wary, like I’ve seen in a lot of these excerpts.
    Lovely writing!

    – Sabrina

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