So, this is another passage from Miles from Manistique close to the passage from the last post. Let’s dissect it a bit.
“The trunk banged shut with a resounding boom as he snatched his fingers back”: Not too bad, though, the “resounding boom” might be a little much. The banging lid certainly made a loud noise, and in this creepy setting it may have sounded louder than it really was, but still, a “resounding boom” is more the work of a rocket than a trunk.
“as if the lid had suddenly transformed into burning poison ivy.”: First of all, there are too many as’s in this sentence. Secondly, the poison ivy being on fire is also a bit too much. I think this sentence would’ve worked better if the trunk had suddenly caught fire OR been transformed into poison ivy.
“Spinning around, he kicked the candle with his foot, causing it to go rolling and guttering across the floor.”: I don’t mind this part. I actually really like the word guttering and it is something that only a candle does. But on second examination, what would he have kicked the candle with if not his foot?
“In the inconstant light from the traveling candle, he could see an inky figure standing near the overturned chair with its hands on its hips.”: Traveling is not the right word here. The candle doesn’t have an itinerary or a passport. It’s difficult because we’ve already sent the candle rolling, and probably don’t want to reuse that word, but what’s another word for rolling? The candle could be spiraling, spinning, turning, revolving, or rotating. I’m kinda partial to spiraling, but even better would be to cut out the clarification that the “inconstant light” is coming from the candle. The reader doesn’t need it. If we know that the only light is from the candle and that the candle has been kicked, then it follows that the light is now inconstant. The next problem is the “he could see.” It’s narrating senses which is generally a no-no. Previously discussed is the inconstant light of the candle, so if we simply said there was an inky figure, the reader can gather that the POV character saw them without having to say it.
The trunk slammed shut with a bang as he snatched his fingers back like the lid had suddenly transformed into poison ivy. Spinning around, he kicked the candle, causing it to go rolling and guttering across the floor. In the inconstant light, there was an inky figure standing near the overturned chair with its hands on its hips.
There, that’s better.
I Write, I Edit, I Write Again. Witness!
We're Making Better Words, All of Them, Better Words.
I Write to Burn Off the Crazy.
A Good Day Writing is a Day Writing.
It Puts the Words on the Page or it Gets the Hose Again.
Just keep writing...just keep writing...writing, writing, writing!
Writing is Magic.
The First Rule of Write Club is You Talk About Write Club.
If You Aren't Writing, You Aren't a Writer