an excerpt

I’ve been having trouble with a fight scene, so I went back to try it again, focusing more on the set up this time. Better, I think.

The chamber that Rylan stepped into was large, over twice as long as it was wide, and their path was a set of gallery railings that ran along the walls. Halfway through the room a walkway spanned the width and divided the room in two, and two jeweled chandeliers hung down on either side, ropes of glittering diamonds and sapphires dangling almost carelessly. The lights were pinpricks of gold from the candles that spanned along the rail, just enough to see the stairs across the room. “That one?” he whispered.

Dacha panted louder than he spoke, slightly bent and shrugging her shoulders in time with her breathing. She nodded. Rylan took the lead, and chose to walk around the wall and avoid the walkway. Saffira’s lantern behind him threw a giant’s shadow on the far wall. Dacha may have been out of breath, but adrenaline gave Rylan the impression that his heard had moved behind his ears. He moved at a walk for Dacha’s sake, both swords free of their sheaths and his eyes scanning to and fro. There were four doors on the upper level aside from their intended staircase, one at each corner. Four silent, black mouths.

Two footsteps beyond the first corner, Rylan heard an extra set of feet on the tile floor. “Saffira!”

The wild woman spun between her companions and the open doorway, and she blocked high. The black axe crashed onto the large knife and forced Saffira to her knees. Two other guards moved past him with short swords in hand, and Rylan heard the sound of crossbows loading across the room.

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3 thoughts on “an excerpt

  1. Hi Eliza,

    I’m new to your blog but I wanted to help if I can. It looks like the action in this scene occurs in the last paragraph you quoted. You might want to try using shorter, punchier sentences in that paragraph. The comparison to the longer, more descriptive sentences that you use above it will give the reader a sense of speed and movement.

    Also, be careful with the spelling of heart in this sentence:

    Dacha may have been out of breath, but adrenaline gave Rylan the impression that his heard had moved behind his ears.

    Otherwise, it looks good. You have a gift with description that makes the prose very easy to “see”. I wish you good luck on your novel!

    Dave Fallon

  2. Dave– I’ll keep that in mind when I go over and edit it; at least it’s better than my first try. And you’re right about the typo. 😀 I’ll have to fix that.

    Thank you for the critique!

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