Saturday, August 25, 2012

Sweet Saturday Sample

Welcome back to Sweet Saturday Samples. Today's sample is from my new project, White Bear, a Christian contemporary fairy tale retelling. Yes, that is a mouthful. Yes, this is an experiment. We shall see how it goes. :)



                I scanned the lobby of the Diamond Mine Hotel Casino in Atlantic City with growing disquiet. Dad promised to wait. If only we could get this whole trip behind us.

                Laughter wafted from the casino. Lights and lush carpeting beckoned to those lingering in the cavernous, tiled expanse of the foyer. There should have been a sign over the archway: “Beware, those who enter here, the house always wins.”

                I pulled my thoughts from the dire circumstances of my father’s financial future and returned to seek my father instead.

                Cubic zirconia draped candelabras guarded the walls of the lobby. Uncomfortable silver gilt benches and frail tables huddled between them, overwhelmed by their glitter. The only other human in the room was the receptionist behind the front desk. She glowered at me as though I would palm one of the ostentatious baubles overflowing from the jeweled fruit bowls.

                “Lose something, miss?”

                “Yes, my father. He promised to wait for me here.”

                “Perhaps he wandered into the casino to pass the time.”

                Please, Lord, not that. The debt from his last excursion still smothered our lives.

                The elevator chimed its arrival. I turned to watch the door with inane hope.

                I glanced at the receptionist again. “Did you see him go toward the bathrooms?”

                “I just came on duty, miss, and there was no one here when I arrived.”

                The elevator doors opened and a massive security guard stepped out. Black suit, strapping shoulders, and a grim face, he looked the part more than the man who escorted me out of the manager’s office moments ago.


Did it grab you?

Thank you for stopping by. :)

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Lindsay said...

This sounds interesting

Sandy Nachlinger said...

Yes, you grabbed me. You've given a hint at conflict (father's gambling addiction and their dire circumstances) and created tension (where is he?) I want to know what happens next with the security guard too.

J. Gunnar Grey said...

Ditto what Lindsay said. And this reads so smoothly. It's exactly the sort of story that Astraea Press loves, just FYI.


Rachel Rossano said...

Thank you, Lindsay, Sandy, and Gunnar. I hadn't considered Astraea, but now that you mention it, I will definitely consider it when I finish it. :)

Audra said...

I'm interested :)

Literaturelady said...

It did indeed grab me! You gave the necessary information in a such a flowing, natural way; I want to read more! Could you maybe post the next section next Saturday?

Another technique I really liked was the "flare prayer" of the girl (I'm assuming the character was a girl!). I recently read a Christian fiction novel in which the author narrated the qualities of the Christian characters, almost pointing neon signs to the matter. I think that defeats the purpose of story (show, not tell). But your character's "flare prayer" felt very natural and showed that she acknowledges God.

The description of the casino was a little confusing in places, especially the description of the candelabras. I got a little lost in those nouns. :-)

Other than that, this sample was great! Keep up the great work!


Rachel Rossano said...

Thank you, Audra and LiteratureLady. :)

I will give that description a careful going over.

I know what you mean about presenting faith in the prose. Showing is much more powerful than telling when it comes to faith and character-building in general. :) I am more likely to believe the character is a Christian if I see them acting like it than if the writer tells me he or she is. :)