Novel Beginnings

Over summer, around taking part in all of my craftiness, I began planning and writing my first novel! (Exciting stuff but still a long way to go!) I have been debating sharing my opening with the world of blogging – my initial fears were to do with theft but I have done my copyright homework and know my rights so no pinching please! My second fear was criticism. Although I can’t do much about this, I am hoping that no one will be too harsh! I would definitely appreciate some constructive criticism as I know there are many established writers/bloggers out there whose advice I could definitely benefit from!

So here we go *deep breath*This scene is essentially a prologue or introduction before the main plot begins!

The air is completely still. The thickness of the forest is so dense that not even the slightest breeze can penetrate the stillness; not the slightest rustling of the leaves can be observed. It is a place of deathly silence. No birds chirrup cheerily from the branches or crow gaudily from the towering trees. The only animals that haunt the labyrinth are the ones who come and go silently; the ones who can observe without being observed. The minute you step into the forest you became enveloped in its branches. They close themselves silently around you, until the way back is a hopeless as the way forward. As soon as you step beyond the threshold, you belong to the forest. Only the forest decides who can leave alive and who isn’t so lucky. Shadows haunt your every move; silently watching, jumping and quivering to frighten and confuse you. No matter which way you spin, twist and turn all attempts are futile. You only have two options. Number one; you will stumble around blindly, hopelessly looking for an escape, trip, fall, scream. When you open your eyes you find that you have somehow reached the edge of the forest and scuttle away, having made the unspoken pledge to never to speak of your experience, or to return to the forest again. Or, the second option, you will suffer. You will be drawn in, curious, look where you shouldn’t look and unearth things that should never be unearthed. You will be punished for this. But the decision isn’t yours to make.

I’d love to hear feedback on this (currently my second draft so it is still in the very early stages!) so please share your comments below! They don’t have to be exclusively about this snippet, I’d love to here potential ideas for the whole plot or guesses as to what might happen! Also, if I get lots of useful feedback I may share future snippets also!

Thank you!


18 thoughts on “Novel Beginnings

  1. creativeclair says:

    I like it, however on the note of criticism I do have one point, there is quite a lot of repetition of the word “silence/silently” might want to find an alternative 🙂 other than that, I’d like to hear more!

    • Hannah Ackroyd says:

      I’m glad you like it! I’m hoping the next few scenes will keep the suspense going, the problem I have is that I don’t write chronologically but pick certain scenes then tie them together so I am hoping all will flow well!

  2. cross(stitch)yourheart says:

    Very interested to see where you go from here. I’m intrigued! Good luck with your novel writing! It’s always scary to put your writing out there for the world to see, but it’s worth it and blogging it is probably one of the kinder audiences you could have in the cyber world.

    Good luck!

    • Hannah Ackroyd says:

      Thank you for your feedback! That is true, I am lucky to have made some lovely friends through blogging and I trust them to be honest but not too intimidating! It is great to get feedback from such a range of people.

  3. Hina Tabassum Khatri says:

    You have created a good scenario. As you said it is still a draft, you could check it for grammar. There are a few errors here and there (but I believe its due to the fact that this is your first novel). You have a gift with creating a scene but I believe that while you talked about the two options, you could have removed the number (number one and number two) and simply should have gone with either and or for effect.

    But over all your work is laudable 🙂

  4. J. L. Dyer says:

    I love the atmosphere you’ve created here. Isn’t October such an inspiring month to be creative? As I was reading, the song “Swamp Witch” by Jim Stafford couldn’t leave me. Keep creating, Hannah. You’ve made a new fan.

    • Hannah Ackroyd says:

      Thank you for your lovely comment! I agree, the autumn season is really significant in the description of the forest, I may even get my camera out for some inspirational snaps once the leaves turn a bit more. Ooh I don’t know that song, I will have to look into it to set the mood! Woo possibly my first fan! Thank you so much for your support!

  5. nanacathy2 says:

    Hi, I am reminded of the time we tried a”shortcut “through a forest of Christmas trees which are planted very close together. the dog got through without any difficulty being below branch level, but we were really struggling to get through and it was frightening, we lost our sense of direction and did panic that we’d never get out- keep going with the novel….

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