books . poetry . events . about . blog . faq . need help? . contact
Instagram Facebook Twitter Tumblr Pinterest Goodreads

After the Madness Workshop (Mad Hatter Style)- E10


The Madness continues! We have two more great entries today. To be honest, I’m so tired of seeing that After the Madness pic, I decided to bring the MAD into the After the MADness Workshop! Tea anyone?

Here’s how this workshop works. I’ll post (along with Brenda DrakeYAtopia, and Shelley Watters) two entries per day until we’ve reached fifteen each. There was no rhyme or reason for who got which entries, so make sure to check all four blogs for yours! For those that are here to critique, have a great time! This is an open forum and we welcome opinions. It isn’t easy to put your stuff out there so, kudos to all of you who entered! I hope we can help ;o)

Let’s do this!

First 250 words

Entry E10 – Lydia Bloomfield

“Nice weather, eh Gray?” Ella folded her arms across her chest, grinning over her shoulder at the tall, blonde man behind her. “Reminds me of November back home.” I wouldn’t start with them talking about the weather. I would start with the part about them finding the right cliff to go down, that’s what sets it apart and starts the story ;o)

“Yeah, it’s lovely.” Grayson shook his head, laughing, and took a few steps to catch up with Ella. “I can’t believe its June here. I want to go somewhere warm for once. Maybe there’s a temple in Cuba that we can visit.” He peered over the cliff‘s edge to the waves crashing far below. “Or somewhere less near the Atlantic ocean. Hawaii?”

“I wish.” Ella pushed her hair out of her face, but the dark blonde strands only blew back into her face, the chilly ocean breeze determined to keep her half blind.  “I should have brought an extra hair elastic. I do not want to grapple down a cliff face with my hair in my eyes.” 

“That’s assuming we find the right cliff to climb down. I think you put too much faith in our dumb luck, Ell.” Grayson rubbed his eyes tiredly. “We’ve been at this for days. I want to go back to a hotel and sleep for a week.”

“I want a shower,” Ella agreed. “But I feel like we’re close. I promise if we don’t find it today, we head back to whatever that town was and sleep in an actual bed for a few nights before we start again. Deal?”


Grayson looked over the edge again, frowning. “How are we going to know when we’ve found it, anyway?”

This is a great dialogue exchange. The writing flows really well. The first sentence needs to grab us, and the weather doesn’t, unless the book is about the weather? But finding whatever they’re looking for is what I would start with ;o)  I’m wondering what they’re looking for!

Thoughts? Anything to add?

Make sure to check back on Monday for more entries!

Have a great weekend ;o)
<3 Erica

4 Responses to “After the Madness Workshop (Mad Hatter Style)- E10”

  1. Amber says:

    Here’s the honest truth- only to help.

    I read the first half then skimmed to the bottom. I don’t know the character, and this was slow, so it just didn’t keep my attention. There is nothing wrong with this scene, and once we care/ know who is talking, then we might be interested in their dialogue, but as it stands this felt like a 2nd or 3rd chapter, after I know who’s talking and why.

    Agents have a million things coming at them at once…if you don’t grab them from the start- with either voice or pace, then they will pass. If you are going to start with something slow—the voice has to be dynamite!!!

    I love to tell my cp- don’t hint, or suggest something good is coming. SMACK THEM IN THE FACE and leave them begging for more 🙂

    Now I’m no expert. I’m still learning like the rest 🙂 But that’s my 2 cents–good luck 🙂

  2. Thanks for stopping by, Amber! Good advice!

  3. There is a reason why there’s a rule about not starting with dialogue: we don’t get a real sense of who is talking (or why we should care) and where we are.

    You do have clues about the locale in the narrative, but your hook is that they’re looking for something in perilous territory–my advice would be to put that in at the get-go, and then bring in some dialogue that pulls its weight with character and plot development. Good luck!

  4. Thanks for reading, Angelica!

Leave a Reply