Although I didn’t get my short story finished in time to submit to the Sword & Laser anthology, I’m still going to push forward with finishing it and try to submit it somewhere else.
I posted the opening (about 900 words) to peer review web site for feedback. Here’s some of the general advice I took away from the specific points the reviewers made:
- Keep characters’ emotions consistent and logical. I really need to think about my characters and define them better before doing some rewriting.
- Have a clear connections between paragraphs
- Show don’t tell. I called a room ‘depressing’ when really I should have described why it felt that way.
- Open the story with some indication of time and place. I had started with some abstract thoughts about what the character was thinking, but one commentator said that getting a firmer grounding right off the bat would be helpful.
- Don’t overdescribe (too many adjectives in one sentence)
- Don’t make paragraphs too short