Fenrir glanced up at the sky again, not expecting to see anything more than the low and endless expanse of dark gray clouds. He brushed his dark hair away from his forehead, the wind just whipping it back around anyway.
"Just sit back down, Fenrir!" Benali called out over the rushing wind, laughing. Fenrir always wondered how Benali kept good humor even in grim situations, with the certain peril the small group was willingly plunging themselves into. He smiled at Benali and shrugged. She smiled back at him as he sank back into his seat, staring out over the sparse terrain. The transporter quickly sped over the ground, levitating several feet above the red dirt and rocks.
"How much longer is it going to be again?" Fenrir asked, seeing the large metal dome loom on the horizon. It wasn't his first time on this kind of mission. And it wouldn't be his last. But
damn it, right now he had his priorities.
Benali looked over her shoulder, sadly shaking her head. “Not again.”
He tried to hold back the tears, but his wavering voice betrayed him. “I can’t help it, I’m 18 months pregnant. Thanks to you. Now pull over so I can pee.”
Now, see, I think this is brilliant! The revision maintains the spirit of the original but is so much tighter and more vivid. Already I love these first page revisions!!!
Exactly. You don't open a book by showing us how lovely your descriptive prose is. You should immediately tell us why we would want to read any further.
Would it be possible to start off with a description and purpose of the dome? Then, the author could go back to the journey to the dome on the transporter. Also, I would like a vivid description of the transporter. It helps the movie in my head as I read the story. -JTC
The new version is very tight. Author, you should apply this approach to the rest of the book.
The only question is, after you have stripped out all of the wordiness and filler, will anyone want to buy a novel that is only 15,000 words long?
The amount of description in sci-fi can be debatable. I say, only give vivid descriptions if you have something brand new to say. Levitation and red rocks and a dome? Not new, so use them as the reliable props they are, but don't focus on them too much.
EE really captures the action, adds a bit of uncertainty. But the emotional tone is still unclear to me. Is it anticipation? Dread?
Quite a difference between the before and after...makes it much more readable in the revised version.
I'd read EE's revised version in a heartbeat, but the original made me roll my eyes. All the smiling and laughing and standing up during the ride felt very forced.
I am intrigued by the dome, though. Is it Thunderdome? Because then I'd REALLY buy the book.
The briefer version, mentioned in a few comments:
The transporter sped above the red dirt and rocks. "Sit back down, Fenrir!" Benali shouted over the rushing wind, laughing. "Do you want to fall out?"
Fenrir always wondered how Benali kept good humor in such grim situations. He smiled at her and sank into his seat. The dome loomed on the horizon. "How much longer?" he asked.
I'm mainly interested in the dome, so it's best to get that mentioned early.
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