Saturday, August 19, 2006

New Beginning 83

“Except for the most incredible kiss I’ve ever had, we never really even touched each other.” She sounded like she was in a trance.

“I was afraid I couldn’t . . . ”

“Oh, you could. You almost did with that kiss. In fact, you’ve done it many times, you just didn’t know it.” Now she sounded . . . mischievous, sultry.

I could hear her breathing heavily now. I remember that incredible kiss. I thought I was going to pass out with her in my arms that day. She actually whimpered. I had pulled her firmly against me and let my mouth make love to hers for eternity in that few seconds. A moment gone forever yet it tortures me often. Oh, to go back and do more. To show her how I felt at that moment. The passion that was cut short may have plunged us into terrible wrongness. Now, what might have been just haunts me.

"Honey?" A voice from the bedroom, interrupting my rumination, sounding like an alley cat in a sewer pipe. "Aren't you coming to bed?"

Knowing full well what awaits should I do so - the facial mask, the curlers, the overflowing ashtray on the nightstand - I pray to Hemingway for strength and suck another swig of rye through my teeth.

"I'm in the middle of an important scene, dear. I'll be along later."

I shudder as I turn back to the keyboard.

Continuation: Writtenwyrdd


Brenda said...

The continuation is spot on! Love it!

I really liked the beginning and would continue reading.

Now, what might have been just haunts me.

Cut "just".

I can already feel his regret. Very good.

Dave Fragments said...

This sounds like the kiss at the end of "The Pincess Bride" and I mean that in a good way. But why should I continue reading the story?

The hook, those sentences at the end of the excerpt "A moment gone forever ... just haunts me." has to be stronger and has to stand apart from the words that come before it.

and my famous last words - cut a few words, make it more conscise ;)

Bernita said...

Otherwise, interesting.

Anonymous said...

I loved it, up until the sentence: "A moment gone forever yet it tortures me often."

That one, and every one after it, seemed icky and angsty to me. Everything before that was wonderful.

Word veri: kssfuqty. The verb for someone's mouth making love to to someone else's mouth, as in, "He decided to kssfuqty her."

Anonymous said...

Everyone has been honest with me in my submissions, so in the interest of honesty, I must say I didn't find it intriguing.

I'm sorry.

Anonymous said...

Are y'all reading the same thing I am? To me, it sounds like a parody of a dreadful romance novel--I can hear Kathleen Turner reading this as a voice-over to Romancing the Stone. Way too melodramatic, at least for my tastes. A little more subtlety might suit it better.

HawkOwl said...

I'm with Anonymous 12:26, but then, I hate love scenes. They're so manipulative, unrealistic, and unnecessary, I don't think there is even such a thing as a "well done" love scene.

In any case, I have no interest in finding out anything about this book. Nothing's happening and this dude is whiny, self-absorbed and dull.

Good luck with it. :)

Macuquinas d' Oro said...

What assumption did the rest of you make about the genders of this overheated couple?
Was it supposed to be ambiguous? The sentence about nearly passing out with her in my arms pushes me toward one intrepretation.

Evil Editor said...

Love scene? I thought it was a scene in a marriage counselor's office.

Anonymous said...

Way too melodramatic, at least for my tastes.

I don't like romance novels, but I recognise this as something that would go over well with those who do like romance novels. It is a bit over-the-top, but so was "The Notebook", which was fabulously successful.

Romance novels aren't supposed to be realistic; they're read for escapism. This was good stuff.

writtenwyrdd said...

If you were writing this dialog for a screenplay, it would probably work just fine.

I have to agree with the others who thought this didn't work. The writing is overblown, and comes across like parody. Perhaps if you toned down the opening line, maybe by using more of a visual first? The first line is very intriguing, but "she sounded like she was in a trance" pulled me right back out.

What if she were doing something, like stalking him across a room, or touching him hesitantly? Something that gives the reader more idea as to where the story is headed.

The problem for me is the couple are so over the top I am put off by them instead of being drawn in.

The line "let my mouth make love to hers for eternity" was great. That certainly captures the mood.

writtenwyrdd said...

BTW, thank you Evil Editor, I wrote that continuation and it's far better after your efforts.

Kanani said...


Those are funny things. I think we've gotten used to them due to internet message boards, however, I always think of them as places where gestures or expressions should go.

Well, being that we've ALL had incredible kisses, I'd have to say your descriptions has some off images in it: almost passing out, whimpering, and a mouth making love to hers. Sorry, but it just sounds a bit odd. I know what you mean, but it almost seems as the mouth is independently working away on its own!

I agree that it's overly sentimental and melodramatic. If you want to make your prose stronger, cut that stuff out and tighten it up.

Now I have to go. Someone I know needs an incredible kiss.

Anonymous said...

...and this dude is whiny, self-absorbed and dull.

Er... We're still talking about the excerpt, right?

Just askin'.

Anonymous said...

Whitemouse--I (annonymous 12:26 again) think you've got an inaccurate view of what romance novels are like if you think this would go over well with the romance crowd. I'm a romance reader and published romance author, and that's why I said this sounded like a parody to me. This is what a lot of people who don't read romance novels think romance novels sound like.

I'll admit, it was what I thought it would sound like before I started reading it. I was dead wrong. I'm sure there are overly dramatic romance novels out there, but most of them are much more understated.

Anonymous said...

If "She actually whimpered" didn't put me off, "let my mouth make love to hers for eternity in that few seconds" certainly did. The same meaning had already been suggested more subtly, but saying it so obviously made me involuntarily roll my eyes.

I liked the first sentence, but what really lost me is a complete lack of knowledge of the relationship between the two characters.

There's a lot about how much they liked that kiss--too much. Uh, why don't they just kiss again? It's at the point where it's no longer intriguing. I need to know what's holding them back, or I can't really be there with them in that moment.

I don't know the genders, but I assumed the viewpoint was male.

Anonymous said...

This one comes across as vaguely creepy to me--I feel as though the situation is not exactly what we're guessing it is, but is something a lot stranger and perhaps sinister.

That would keep me reading, actually; it manages to be a little creepy without setting off the "eww" response.

I think he may be listening to a recording; she's not here, possibly she's dead or gone, and that's why he's being so melodramatically sure that it's all over.

If that's not the intended impression, there may be a problem. (Or it may just be that I'm not in the target audience.)

I'm not sure what "The passion that was cut short may have plunged us into terrible wrongness" means. It could mean "Our passion being cut short might be what plunged us into terrible wrongness." Or it could mean "If our passion had not been cut short, it might have plunged us into terrible wrongness." Since these are nearly opposites, it would be a good idea to phrase it less ambiguously.

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:26,

Well, if you read romance novels regularly, and are an author in the genre, then you certainly would know better than I would whether this opening is overwrought or peachy-keen.

I'll downgrade my comment to, "I liked it," and pat the author on the back.

Anonymous said...

I write romance and I read it. This might have worked "back in the day," but not in this one.

Overblown? Yes.
Intriguing? No.

There's just too much "wrongness" here.

Cut, work on creating realistic dialogue (like in the continuation), and under no circumstances use the word "passion" and maybe you can pull this off.

Oh, and not too many romance heroines whimper these days . . .

Anonymous said...

Somebody should make a law: Thou shalt not begin dialogue with either well or Oh.

Anonymous said...

So this guy is just sitting around reminiscing about the past? On the one hand I find it easier to accept an over-the-top memory of a love scene than I would an over-the-top description of a love scene. Just because the guy remembers that way doesn't mean it necessarily happened that way.

On the other hand, you're opening with a memory.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, minions. I appreciate all the input.

The word "wrongness" evoked an emotion -check.

It is a memory but intentionally not clear -yet.

It is a man and a woman who are married -but not to each other.

This scene is based on reality and inspired because she did whimper and I did feel like I was going to hyperventilate (pass out seemed less medical).

It is sinister, marykaye, in the sense of this being a potentially adulterous situation.

tsgnxu, aren't all our romantic or sensual memories a bit over-the-top?

Again, thanks everyone and thanks EE.

Anonymous said...

I just realized I probably wasn't clear on this. It is a telephone conversation then goes to a quick memory.

Anonymous said...

Actually, I thought this was literary, rather than romance. These days, even historical romance is much less melodramatic than this bit. This excerpt reminds me (unfondly) of the Giuseppina Guillaume bit a while ago. Just too much.

But hell, it may be entirely appropriate in view of the next thousand words, so don't take my word as gospel, either.

Beth said...

Interesting dialogue (if you're going to start with dialogue, this is the way to do it!), but then the narration sidestepped into melodrama. ("Oh to go back and do more..." "plunged us into a terrible wrongness...") If the POV character is a man, this doesn't sound like the way a man would express himself. I mean, she's sitting right there tellin him it's the most incredible kiss she ever had...what's he doing wallowing in angst? Sheesh. Just grab her and get on with it.

Second beef is that it all seems to take place in a white, featureless room.

writtenwyrdd said...

marykaye, I figured they were having a phone conversation and she was having one-sided phone sex. That's what the dialog seemed to hint at anyhow, lol.

Anonymous said...

With the caveat that I don't think I read this genre, I'll try and offer my version of help.

I thought the opening was one woman talking to another. Then, although this would be a typo, I thought the second paragraph was the same person talking. Third paragraph is her girlfriend talking, but who is "she?"

As you can tell, I'm confused from the start because it turns out I'm wrong, wrong and then wrong again.

You'll have to decide if that's because I'm reading out of genre or if it needs to be cleared up. I could be slow.

It didn't draw me in because of the confusion. Cleared up, it might do the trick. Good luck.