Exerpt form Chapter two/ Trails to the Great Swamp


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Thread: Exerpt form Chapter two/ Trails to the Great Swamp

  1. #1

    Exerpt form Chapter two/ Trails to the Great Swamp

    The families were excited as they peered over the sides and looked into the muddy water of the Mississippi river. They could hear the steam boilers begin to build up steam and with a clank and a squeak; the big paddle wheel began to turn. With water sliding off of the paddle wheel. The boat began to inch its way out of the port and before long the wooden bottom of the boat began to toss to and fro with the current.

    Giggles came from some of the kids when they would hit a good size wave and feel the boat come back down with a splash. The adults on the other hand had a more queasy feeling about the whole thing.


    Mr. Nance looked at Mr. Ingram “You look like you just swallowed a plug of your tobacco.” With laughter in his voice said, "This ain’t no worse than that fifth swig of whiskey."

    No sooner as he made that comment and the boat hit a swift current and took a dip to the side and Mr. Nance's knees began to become unsteady. Trying to make it to the side of the boat Mr. Nance grabbed a hold to the railing and proceeded to leave behind in the Mississippi river that last Tennessee breakfast."And I be damned if the end results ain’t the same."

    Along the banks the families looked out and could see different wildlife, at one point they were watching a deer that was drinking from where the river was slowed by a fairly nice sized cove. This young buck was about a four point with velvet still on his antlers; the deer cautiously came out of the timberline and made his way to calmness of the cove twitching his tail from side to side. When the deer had felt like he was out of danger he began to drink from the water. Springing from the water an alligator locked his powerful jaws onto the most part of the deer's head. Within moments the deer's legs buckled as the alligator began to pull backwards and drag the kicking and frantic deer into the water. The alligator began its death roll. The water churned and then became calm with a rising of redness, it was as if the deer had never been there.


    The men watched in amazement, the women and young girls turned their head in disbelief. One of Simion Stone’s boys, turned to his dad and said "Paw what you gonna do if one of them gets in your traps?" Simion replied "Recon I'll be mighty thankful to the good Lord to keep both my arms and legs."



    Last edited by Awanita; January 8th, 2015 at 07:51 PM.

  2. #2
    And I left the C out of excerpt...what a goof ball I am. Also reversed my R in from.
    Last edited by Awanita; December 22nd, 2014 at 07:11 PM.

  3. #3
    Hey Awanita,

    This piece suffers from the conversational voice and a lack of "showing us" the themes.

    The conversational voice ("Now, to the children...") doesn't really work with the current content of the story.

    We're essentially being told, not shown, the story. It's cognitive. For instance, instead of telling us explicitly there's an alligator, you can describe a roar of teeth and scale tearing through the water.

    Also, there were a few grammar and word choice issues with this piece:

    "The families were excited as they peered over the sides and looked into the muddy water of the Mississippi river[.] [T]hey could hear the steam boilers begin to build up steam and with a clank and a squeak, the big paddle wheel began to turn."

    "With water sliding off of the paddle wheel with ease" - semi-awkward use of ease. Water slides off things pretty easily anyways.

    "Gaining his composer[,] Mr. Nance says "and I be damned if the end results ain’t the same." - yeah, I also hate scores that are repetitive


    Not bad, overall. I liked how you added the twitching of the deer tail. I would like more meat, more subsistence to this piece. By itself, it just plays out as a scene from a Saharan nature documentary.
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  4. #4
    I will keep working on it.

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