1. DeadMoon
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    DeadMoon Contributing Member Contributor

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    Short story discription

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by DeadMoon, Oct 25, 2015.

    I was hoping to get a bit of feedback on a small paragraph. Soon I am going to be submitting a short story for consideration to be publish as a set with other like stories. I am still working on the actual story but I wanted to see if the description sounds good or not. thank you


    Sixteen years as a traveling salesman would not prepare Clayton Meyers for what would be his most difficult sale of his career. There would be no lies or half truths to tell, no fake smiles to hide behind, no trusting hands to shake. This time, Clayton had to sell the truth of the life he lived, the life he stole and the destination of both of their souls.
     
  2. DefinitelyMaybe
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    DefinitelyMaybe Contributing Member Contributor

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    It sounds like there could be a very good story there, but the details here are sketchy. 'The life he stole' implies conflict, but I'm not sure what 'the destination of both their souls' means. I can imagine things, but don't know what you've imagined for that.
     
  3. Tenderiser
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    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Depends what the purpose of this is. Is it to get a publisher/magazine/whatever to buy it, or is it more like blurb to entice a reader?

    Actually, either way... I have no idea what this story is about. The last sentence crosses the line from intriguing to incomprehensible, for me. I think you need to be much clearer about what the conflict is in this story. You don't have to give all the details but right now, I don't have a clue.

    Also, if it's a query for the publisher, those are written in the present tense for novels and I assume it's the same for short stories. So it would be:

    Sixteen years as a traveling salesman hasn't prepared Clayton Meyers for the most difficult sale of his career. There are no lies or half truths to tell, no fake smiles to hide behind, no trusting hands to shake. This time, Clayton has to sell the truth of the life he lived, the life he stole and the destination of both of their souls.

    On the positive side I think your first sentence is great. You've packed a lot of information into a few words and it makes me want to read on. I just need a little bit more afterwards to make me want to read the entire story. :)
     
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  4. DeadMoon
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    DeadMoon Contributing Member Contributor

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    Thanks for the advice,

    as a whole, all of the stories involved are going to be based on the theme "Road Trips" so there is an applied meaning to the story but I do see your point and I do want it to be able to be a stand alone description as well.
     
  5. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    I really like Tenderiser's re-write - it got rid of a lot of the stylistic issues (repeated words, etc.) from the original version. But it's still not really clear to me what the story is about. I certainly didn't get "road trip" out of it...
     
  6. Starfire Fly
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    Starfire Fly Member

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    I think it's a little too vague. However, the last sentence definitely grabs me. Instead of alluding to a big "sale" without explaining anything, I think you should say more about what it actually is. Not a trial, judging from the last sentence. You can still call it a sale euphemistically, but introducing fantasy elements earlier would be more intriguing.
     
  7. Krishan
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    Krishan Active Member

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    If the description is for the benefit of the publisher, I'd consider toning it down a little and making it more straightforward and factual - more of a synopsis than a blurb. If it's for the benefit of a potential reader, I'd advise being more specific about what actually happens, while keeping the same tone.
     

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