Sunday, February 18, 2007

New Beginning 220

Brian Hodge looked at the raffle ticket he had just bought from his daughter.

"A werewolf? What on Earth am I going to do with a werewolf?"

"It's for a good cause, Dad."

"You mean it's for your cause."

Brian looked at his daughter, just turned nineteen. She wore a black leather corslet and high leather boots to her mid thigh. Her breasts were tightly packed into a cleavage, and from her nipples to her hips was a tool-worked pattern of roses and fire. Around her neck she wore a heavy wooden cross, and she carried a crossbow that fired bolts in the shape of wooden stakes.

"I wish you wouldn't wear stuff like that to the office. I mean, that thing barely even covers your butt crack."

"It's the lifestyle I chose, father. I wish you could respect that."

“I’m trying, honey, really I am -- but a werewolf? What if I win? One minute it’ll be chewing my slippers and crapping on the carpet, next minute it’ll be in my chair, reading the sports section and drinking my good liquor.”

His daughter sighed and gave him her special pity-the-parents look. “Modern times, Dad. You have to adapt.”

“I know, I know.” Brian’s gaze darted around the room, searching out divine assistance. “But werewolves, vampires, zombies? Ancient prophecies and arcane curses? Last month there was that band of unlikely adventurers you brought home. Your room's full of enchanted talismans and mystic keys. I mean, how can I--”

His daughter bent down to pick up a case of silver bullets.

Ohmygod!” Brian clasped his hand over his eyes and turned away.

“What, dad?” Her eyes widened and her mouth hung open in exasperation.

“Honey, you have got to wear different clothes. I-- I think I just saw your magic portal.”

Opening: D. Jason Cooper.....Continuation: ril


Annie Wicking said...

I loved it, want to read more. I like anything which has a twist on an old idea.


Anonymous said...

This is really derivative, making me think it is a spoof. I might have read on a bit because the werewolf thing had me curious as hell; but the constant awkward phrasing was really off putting: "high leather boots to her mid thigh," and "breasts were tightly packed into a cleavage" were particularly strange. Try "thigh-high boots" and please note that "a cleavage" implies cleavage is an object you can move around. Generally, it's "her cleavage" and you cannot pack your breasts into one. The latter choice made me wonder if English is your second language, which would make writing a lot more difficult.

The opening sentence seems out of place, too. Why buy the ticket then ask the question of why he would want a werewolf? Perhaps begin with the daughter impatiently asking, "So, are you gonna buy the damn ticket or what, Dad?"

What bugged me most about this was that it was a fresh hook clothed in overused tripe. Make up your own stuff, not use someone else's. This sounds like fan fiction.

Also, fewer adjectives. We don't need a snapshot of her attire, we need to know why we should read this book. You have an interesting hook; work that, not the Buffy nod.

The continuation is hilarious. Magic portal, indeed...

Anonymous said...

I quite liked this - the idea of being able to win a werewolf in a raffle got my attention. I'm not bothered by Brian buying the ticket and only then checking the prize; I've bought and sold enough raffle tickets to know that, sometimes, you buy one just to shut people up :)

I thought the description dragged a bit (and was also a bit disturbing for a father to notice of his daughter), but the line following it had me laughing. Good way of showing that sort of stuff isn't as unusual as it might otherwise be considered, IMO.

I tripped on the last line though - the tone suddenly sounded a lot more formal to me. The switch between 'Dad' and 'father', for example.

I'd read on. I want to see Brian win that werewolf!

Anonymous said...

Generally, it's "her cleavage" and you cannot pack your breasts into one.

If a woman has breasts that don't normally create cleavage, but she packs them into an outfit so tight it creates cleavage, then saying she packed them into a cleavage [semblance], while oddly phrased, does not shout ESL. Some tries at clever phrasing fall flat. This one did give me pause, and should probably be smoothed over. A little silicone should take care of it.

Brenda said...

"... and from the nipples to her hips..."

I'm thinking a father would say CHEST, and not nipples. That squicked me out a bit.

ril: I heart you bigtime.

shaded-lily said...

LOL at the continuation. ril, you are naughty!

I found the beginning interesting and amusing. Maybe because I don't read the werewolf et al. genre, I didn't perceive it as derivative. But I do agree with writtenwyrdd about the phrases that seemed a little off. Also, the description of her outfit ... we're in Brian's head and he's a straight-arrow type (right?) -- I don't think he'd allow himself to use her nipples as a reference point.

Other than that, IMO it's a good start!

Robin S. said...

Other than the point where the description of Brian's daughter and her cleavage breaks down, I thought this was fun to read.
I agree that this part could use a "retooling". I've never thought of having "A cleavage" -- just cleavage - but reworking the description from top to toe would get you where you wanted to go, I think.

One of my daughters dresses like she just stepped out a photo shoot for Teen Vogue; my older daughter, for a while, enjoyed dressing like she could have been this werewolf-loving kid's best friend - tooling, crosses et al. She looked great - which made it even more disconcerting to see.

This makes the passage fun to read, to me. Commisseration.

And - Dad to Father, Mom to Mother - this name-switching happens all the time, no big deal -all depends on what said daughter's desired end game is - (does she want money for even more clothes or a trip, is she feeling particularly self-righteous) - just depends on the mood-du-moment.

And ril, I think your continuation was an instant clasic. Portal. What a picture.

Bernita said...

Her description is a little awkward, but what I don't quite get is why she's selling tickets to a werewolf lottery if she makes a habit of hunting them?
Don't have him just "look" - you use it twice. Have him "survey" or something.
Same thing with "wore."
You can have her breasts crammed into a black leather corslet. You can have a heavy cross dangling or bouncing on her cleavage or hanging around her neck, or caught in the straps of her cross-bow, but don't just list what she wears.

Anonymous said...

Well, it's cute. It's obviously a gimmick, too, but it is cute.

That said, this opening didn't really grab me. The first line was nifty, but then the story veers off in another direction immediately, leaving me dangling and confused. I am just not as interested in a father-daughter "you look like a whore" conversation as I am in a werewolf raffle.

Anonymous said...

All I gotta say is if she's going off to fight werewolves or vamps or something, the last thing she wants is a cleavage. Speaking as someone possessed of (ahem) a sizable endowment, there's nothing worse than trying to exercise with your boobs squashed together. Do you know how much sweat builds up in there? I tell you, a good seven hours crammed together inside a leather corset, that cleavage is gonna be like a petri dish.

Anonymous said...

If teenagers are selling werewolves as household pets, it seems like staging an insurgent rebellion to end their slavery and give them voting rights etc would be a more viable plot than trying to make some big "heroic" deal of continuing to "fight" the poor oppressed creatures. In any wardrobe.

Brenda said...

Maybe she's like the chicks in Underworld or Van Helsing (both played by the same actress, by the way), where you have modest breasts and so a corset makes ya look...breasty. Go with DDs in a corset and you can land 747s on 'em (very obnoxious look, I PROMISE). Definitely not a good thing and if you attempted to run with that going on, black eyes are a given (take my word for it).

Besides, the daughter HAS to wear that - the standard has been set by Hollywood. We must always follow the standard, yanno. (sarcasm)

And I'm still squicked out that the father would think "nipples" instead of "chest" in regard to his own daughter.

Anonymous said...

Wooden cross and wooden stakes -- sounds like vampire gear to me. But the rest is, what? A hybrid of Goth and "Rocky Horror"? (Hmm… if Buffy had worn a get-up like that, the show might still be on today!).

But we can't assume from her clothes and weapons that Brian's daughter hunts and kills werewolves, too. They may simply be a trap-and-release initiative for her. Remember, werewolves are human except for 1 to 3 days out of the month. So is the werewolf being offered as a pet/slavery -- or maybe for a canned kill?

Sounds like for this YA(?) story to successfully go the cute spoof route, you'll need to be pretty convincing in your spoofing. With so much potential litigation surrounding the offering of a werewolf as a raffle prize, perhaps you should go with something more along the lines of one of the many demons or imps from any of the various hell dimensions out there.

And I must nitpick about the crossbow firing bolts "in the shape of wooden stakes." Even a wooden stake must be fletched and balanced if it's going to travel true for any distance. Unless it's just for show and the young lady's attire really has nothing to do with vampire hunting, then maybe go with "bolts of wood."

Also, quick fashion tip: the cross would be SO much more versatile in repelling vampires and assorted other paranormal beings were it silver instead of wood. Pair it with matching silver cross earrings (or nipple rings) and you've got some vampy accessories to die for!

Stacia said...

Yeah, I'm with Brenda. The opening is cute, but I find the father's thoughts of nipples and cleavage totally inappropriate and quite creepy.

He reminds me of this friend of mine in elementary school's Dad, who made the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end even ten years later, when he walked into a bank behind me and I felt creeped out even before I realized it was him (he?). Yuck.

Xenith said...

Being a list, I skimmed the description of the daughter's outfit and read the last bit as:

"Around her neck she wore a crossbow that fired bolts in the shape of wooden stakes."

I hope she doesn't wear it loaded.

Anonymous said...

I liked the beginning and loved the continuation.

I didn't have any problems with the descriptions, either on " a cleavage" or "daughter's nipples" that other commentators seem to have. I'm a father, my daughter's now thirty and we don't have a "suspect/squishy" relationship yet I could and probably did use similar descriptions when addressing her dress code. I think it's down to whether fathers/daughters can cope with talking about these things.

I don't read a lot in this genre but think I would like this one because of it's fresh start/take and it's spoofy potential. The daughter may be a vampire hunter but perhaps in this story werewolves are sympathetic/goodie types. Think of the fun you could have with a werewolf as a pet.

What bugged me most about this was that it was a fresh hook clothed in overused tripe. Make up your own stuff, not use someone else's. This sounds like fan fiction.

Like I said I don't read a lot of this stuff but I disagree with Writtenwyrd on this. 99% of what's written in this genre could be classed as "Buffy" fanfiction if you want to be purist but half of them probably took form before Buffy did. To me this is a (possibly) fresh take on an old storyline.

Besides I liked it.

Anonymous said...

I suppose I should clarify my comment about "a fresh hook clothed in overused tripe." As tatiehead mentions, a lot of these vampire slayer books have similar styles. And it is a given that it is difficult to write something that is completely new.

What I was trying to say was that there wasn't any originality in the descriptions, nothign to make it the author's creation. The hook is interesting, but what world building we see so far seems wholly derivative. That's all I'm saying.