20 January 2007

Literary critics needed

One of the things in the blurb for this blog is that it's a place where I post half-baked ideas that I hope others will help me to bake. Ususally that's just in the form of a direct comment on a blog post, which can be just a line or two -- "I disagree" or "You're talking rubbish" or something like that.

This time, however, it's a request for a bit more effort.

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In November 2006 I participated in National Novel Witing Month (NaNoWriMo), and challenged others on the Charles Williams discussion forum to join in as well, and try to write a Charles Williams-type novel in a month. I hoped that we could then "have an Inklings", and discuss each other's writing, as Charles Williams and his friends did over 60 years ago in Oxford.

Unfortunately there weren't many takers, and so there was not much discussion. Nevertheless, I finished my novel in the allotted time, and am now revising the draft, and I'm looking for feedback from readers to see if it is worth publishing.

So it needs the effort of reading at least the first chapter, and saying "Yecch! I couldn't take it any more", or else reading the whole thing, and pointing out holes in the plot, or inconsistencies in the narrative, or things that the characters say or do that you don't understand, and so on.

I hope you won't find it too boring. One of my two readers so far (a retired Anglican bishop in England) responded
I have read the story with great enthusiasm and non-stop. I was gripped with the plot from the first pages and stayed with it throughout - very compelling reading! I really enjoyed meeting with all the characters who you have portrayed with great skill, you get to know them as individuals and then you have a love or hate relationship with them. It is very very readable and you get caught up with each of the characters and go along with them on their journeys.

I've left out his more specific criticisms because I hope to get those from people who have simply read the text, not influenced too much by what others have said.

Anyway, if you are willing to give it a go, please e-mail me a request at hayesstw@gmail.com (or any of my other e-mail addresses if you know them -- see my contact page), and I will send you a copy of the latest draft in PDF format, which you can print out or read on screen as you prefer.

You don't have to be a fan of Charles Williams to do this, but if you are, any comparisons, favourable or unfavourable, with the novels of Charles Williams will be welcome.

2 comments:

Benjamin Solah said...

I find forums are the best way to find critters for stories. There are a lot of writing forums out there. I hope you find someone to have a read; I don't have much time nowadays.

Thanks for stopping by my blog - no excuses now.

Steve Hayes said...

Well, I've had one taker -- Notes From a Hillside Farm.

Thanks John.

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