Friday, June 18, 2010

Breaking the Rules Blogfest (Updated)

Today is the Breaking the Rules Blogfest hosted by Elizabeth Mueller.  I don't have an entry, but it looks like an interesting one so please visit her website to check it out!

Update:  Okay, I realized I do have an entry.  The rule I broke is "Don't Start Your Book With Exposition."  But I really, really like this exposition. So, here it is.

In the cold crack of winter, the lions came down from the mountains. Nightstalkers, the farmers called them: sleek, black prowlers that hunted at night. They carried off sheep, chickens, and, very occasionally, children. Before the war they had been a rare nuisance, a useful source of tales to frighten youngsters into good behavior. But the King’s brother Synedd, in his ceaseless grasping for the throne, had seen their potential in warfare and taught them to hunt for sport. He used them to supplement his army of traitors, making up in beasts what he lacked in soldiers. In the years following the war, the ones that hadn’t been killed in battle returned to their lone ways. The Rangers who patrolled the border studied their habits and became experts at tracking them down, even to their own lairs.

Faldur Relaszen, Captain of the Ranger pack assigned to the Silverbark Valley, was particularly renowned for his prowess. So when the message came that a nightstalker was plaguing the farms around Glenhym Castle, it was his duty to go and find it. This was not a duty he cherished, however, especially on Midwinter’s Eve. It was a hard thing to pass up the all-night celebration and go out in the snow in search of a wretched creature that would just as soon eat him as whatever livestock it was after. 

He only hoped it didn’t take all night.


  1. I did see this but I didn't enter either.

  2. I just didn't have time. I'm trying to write more and blog less. But it does look like a fun concept.

  3. Hey, that's not so bad... a bit much for the beginning of something, maybe, but the writing is good!

  4. Not bad! I like it. It evokes a certain sense of dread at the nightstalkers.

  5. I know what you mean about writing more and blogging less, that's my goal as well. I've cut down to 3 times a week with blogfests on the side (gotta include them blogfests!)

    It sounded pretty good to me! I love details and have a hard time deciphering why it would be wrong to remove so much of that. :( You know, maybe It's just me, but some rules don't make sense! I like what you wrote! Is it because it's trite or something? I mean, really? I can understand lots of adverbs, but . . . Oh well...

    Thank you for joining my blogfest, I appreciate it!!!

    Have a nice weekend.

  6. That's a good summary of a story. Definitely worth cutting, but good to have to sprinkle into the mix at proper points.

  7. I am interested. The exposition really is pretty good considering. With all these rules on how not to start, it makes me wonder what we are allowed to start with. lol

    Nice entry. I'm glad you found it and decided to post for the blogfest.

  8. Elizabeth, the reason I had to remove it is that there is no action on the first page. Nothing is actually happening. The reader is given a history of the world the main character lives in, but doesn't have an instant connection to him. Now there are many people, like you and me, who don't mind a story starting that way. But most readers these days are used to some kind of gripping action to get their attention, and editors and agents usually require it. An agent would most certainly toss this first page into the rejection pile.

  9. *sniffs* well, I liked it. A lot. Am I the only one who doesn't need action before I'm introduced to the MC?

    You worked on this Christine; I see the progress you've made.

    I gotta get to work. Later.


  10. Thanks, Donna. I can't believe you're willing to even read this after all the times I've posted it. This one was from April 2008, I think.


I apologize for the word verification. I hate it, but the spammers made me do it.