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 180 Degrees -- First Two Chapters

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PostSubject: 180 Degrees -- First Two Chapters   Wed Sep 07, 2011 2:37 pm

180 Degrees – Chapters 1 and 2

She didn't hear the loud crack as his hand struck her face. There was a brilliant flash of light, and a numb feeling that slowly gave way to intense burning on her left cheek. She became aware that she was sitting in the middle of the dining room floor, and looked around for his feet or legs.

He was no longer there. She wiped the tears from her cheeks, and grabbed the edge of the table. Pulling herself to her knees, she began picking up the larger pieces of the plate and the small scraps of food from the floor.

"Why are you so stupid?" she heard herself ask.

She knew better than to push.

It was the summer of ’65, and she had met a boy named David. He was a junior in high school, but seemed to like her. He would come around the house in the afternoon, and they would hang around together. She thought he was just about the best thing ever. From what she could tell, he really liked her also. That afternoon, while they were sitting on the porch, he leaned over and kissed her. Her heart leapt inside her, and she knew she was in love.

David was the starting shortstop on the high school baseball team. He was tall, smart, and good looking. It never occurred to her that it was strange that a junior would like an eighth grader. But in ten years, it wouldn’t make a difference. Most men were five or more years older than their wives or girlfriends. Her mother was two years older than her dad, and that had been so bad; her mother had left when Kate was only four.

In her mind, she began planning the future. Dances at the school; Friday nights at the drive-in; Sunday afternoon walks in the park. She would be introduced to the popular kids in the high school, and would certainly become more popular in her school also. She knew she shouldn’t tell David she was in love. It was too soon. But she was afraid if she didn’t let him know something, he might leave.

A few days later, they sat on her front porch, talking.

“Why haven’t you asked me out?” she asked.

“What do you mean?”

“We could go to the movie. Or bowling, or have some pie at the Diner. Anything. I just want to go out some time.”

He got quiet for a moment, and she got flushed. She knew she had gone too far.

“I’m sorry,” she started. “I just like you, and wanted to hang around”

“Isn’t that what we have been doing?”

“Yeah...I know. Nevermind. I’m just silly.”

“Listen, Kate, I like you too. You just don’t really know me. Your dad wouldn’t want you dating anyone right now, especially not me.”

“Why do you say that? Dad would love you. He played baseball in high school, too.”

“I’m not the good kid you think I am. I gotta go.”

With that, he stood up and started walking away. She tried to get him to stay and talk, but he kept going. He said he would see her tomorrow, so she didn’t make a big deal of it. She knew when he came over the next day; she would just keep things light hearted, and maybe even silly. She would show him that he didn’t have to worry about anything.

She was a little sad that he had left without kissing her, but there was always tomorrow. She went inside, and began getting dinner ready.

She always tried to have dinner ready when her dad got home. Things went nicer in the evening when she did that, it seemed. He was less likely to get upset, and start drinking or yelling. Unfortunately, on that night, things didn't go as well as she'd hoped.

He came in the door, and went straight to his room, closing the door behind him. That was the way it usually started. But she had fixed lasagna, his favorite meal. She had copied the recipe from a book at the school library. Maybe he would see the lasagna, and be happy. Maybe it would be a good evening. She really hoped so. After the afternoon with David, she really wanted to be able to enjoy the night with her dad.

She waited a few minutes, and heard nothing. She knew the alcohol was in there, in his closet. She took some of it from time to time when she needed help dealing with things. She went to the living room, to the corner. It was on the other side of the wall from his closet. Sometimes, when he was drinking, she could hear him grumbling, or even arguing. She wasn’t sure if he was talking to himself, or if he was on the phone. This night, there was no noise whatsoever. She waited a little while longer, and went to the bedroom door.

“Daddy,” she called out. “Dinner’s ready. I made lasagna.”

“Alright,” he said from inside.

He didn’t sound angry really. Maybe a little reluctant.

She started to make her way back to the kitchen, as he came out of the bedroom.

“Who is he?” he asked.

“Who?” she asked, hoping he wasn’t asking about David.

“You know who. The boy who’s been coming over to the house every day.”

“Oh, that’s David. He’s just a friend.”

“I don’t want him coming over any more. And I don’t want you going anywhere to see him.”

“Why not?”

“You’re fourteen, he’s seventeen!”

She recognized the look, and the sound of his voice. It was obvious she had a choice. She could just say, “Yes Daddy,” and hope he bought it and settled down. Or she could ask another question, or try to explain that he was just a friend, or just about anything else, and risk the consequences.
“Daddy, he's just a friend.”

“He’s too old!” he shouted.

“I know Daddy. He’s just a friend. He doesn’t like me, and I don’t like him.”

“Then why does he keep coming over?”

“Well, I mean we don’t like each other as anything except friends.”

“High school boys only care about one thing. And if he thinks he’s getting that from you, he’s got another think coming. Do I need to go talk to him?”

“No Daddy. He won’t come over any more, I promise.”

“Do you think I’m stupid? I know you two have been kissing. You’ve already opened the door. Have you slept with him?”

“No Daddy. We only kissed once. I told him I liked him, and he left, and probably won’t ever come back. He's just a friend, Daddy."

She started crying.

He turned and went back to his room. Maybe he would stay in there now, and nothing else would be said.

How had he known David had come over? And how could he possibly know they had kissed?

A moment later, he walked back into the kitchen.

“I don’t want to see you getting hurt. And if you don’t give him what he wants, he’ll leave, and you’ll get hurt. If you do give him what he wants, he’ll leave you anyway. A boy like that is no good.”

"Daddy, he's just a friend. I like him, but he doesn't like me. I don't think he'll come back. But in a few years, it won't make a difference. I just like hanging around him."

She had started cleaning up the table, hoping to show it wasn't really a big deal, and maybe to diffuse the situation a little. And maybe to try to show her dad that she was growing up, and having a
friend, who happened to be a boy, really wasn't a big deal. She picked up her plate, and began to walk around to his side of the table when he grabbed her shoulder and spun her around. The flash of light, and the slowly spreading sting dazed her for a moment.

When she realized he had gone, she made her way to the bathroom to clean herself up. She didn’t want bruises and swelling when David saw her. Looking in the mirror, the dark thoughts that would be her companions for a long time first came to her.

“It’s your fault,” she thought. “Mom couldn’t love you, so she left. Daddy can’t love you so he gets drunk and hits you. David can’t love you, so he leaves. What’s the point? What difference does any of it make, anyway? If I had never been born, Mom and Daddy would still be together, he wouldn’t drink, and they would probably be happy.”


At six the next morning, she heard her dad getting in the shower. It amazed her that he could be so drunk late at night, and yet he was up every morning, going to work. When she drank, she had a tough time getting up in the morning, and being able to function enough to get to school. By seven, he was gone. She dozed off a little more, getting some decent sleep until almost nine.

Going for her shower, she was a little shocked when she looked in the mirror. The left side of her face was bruised, and her eye was swollen just a bit. The bruise could be covered with make-up. The swelling would be harder to hide. If someone noticed and asked, she would tell them she ran into her bedroom door.

Over the next few days, she didn’t see David at all, and her dad was calm the rest of the week. On Saturday afternoon, Kate’s dad dropped her off at the mall. She was going to try to meet with some girls to do some shopping. They really went there to hang out, and hopefully talk to some boys. She didn’t know if her dad thought about that, but he never said anything.

Outside the Sears store, she saw David. He saw her, and at the first instant, he seemed a little hesitant, as if he wasn’t sure what to do. Then he smiled, almost clumsily, and walked toward her.

“Hey,” he said, about as low key as possible.

“Hi,” she responded, nonchalantly.

“Sorry I haven’t been by. I would say I’ve been busy, but that’s a lie. Truth is, I’ve been thinking a lot. You like me. I like you. But I could get in real trouble for hanging around with you. There are things I enjoy that you can’t.”

That only piqued her curiosity, and even though she knew it might be going down a path she shouldn’t go down, she let him know that she wanted to be with him, even if it meant doing things she shouldn’t be doing. So David introduced her to marijuana. She was hooked.

By the time the school year rolled around, she was getting high almost every day. She did most of it in the morning, so by the time her dad got home; she would have most of it out of her system. She kept some under her bed, so if it was a rough night, she could calm herself down, and make it all go away. It was also during this time that she became sexually active.

Most kids in her class were excited about being in ninth grade. To her, it was just another year. At the end of the first six-weeks, she had the worst day of her life. She had known her grades were down. She just didn’t care. Fights with her dad were several times a week now, and at least once a week, it became physical. Report cards were mailed out, and she checked the mailbox every day. She wanted to get it before her dad did. She could at least know what was coming. Maybe he wouldn’t even think to ask. She checked every day as soon as she got home. Every day except that Tuesday.

When she walked out of the school, David was there, waiting for her. He gave her a ride home, and they smoked a little on the way. She didn’t want to at first, but figured she could just avoid her dad until it wore off. By the time they got to her house, she was pretty out of it.

David followed her to the front door, and gave her a long kiss, pushing her back inside. She gently protested, but he talked her into letting him in. They kissed some more, and before she knew it, they were getting pretty heavy. She knew it would be almost two more hours before her dad got home. She also knew that someone had told him about the two of them kissing. But he hadn’t said anything about it lately, so maybe no one was watching. Or maybe he didn’t care anymore. At that moment, she really didn’t care anymore. She relaxed a little, and began to really enjoy herself.
The next few moments were a blur. It was like the entire room exploded. She heard shouting, banging, and was both pushed and pulled at the same time. David, who had been right next to her was gone, then suddenly shoved back into her so hard, it knocked her against the wall. She hit her head, and got fuzzy for a few seconds. She could hear all kinds of yelling, but wasn’t able to tell what was being said. She tried to get her wits about her. Was it another language? No, she felt sure it was English, but couldn’t make out words….just shouting.

David pulled himself off her, and went after the other person. She tried to see who it was, but David was blocking her view. Had someone broken in, and attacked them? The first instant, she felt lucky to have David there. He was in good shape. Surely he would protect her. The next instant, she was terrified, as she saw David knocked to the side, and caught the first view of her dad.

His face was twisted like she had never seen. What was he doing home? Was David okay? Was he going to come after her now? David started standing, but her dad knocked him back down, yelling for him to stay down, or get his head bashed in. Maybe her dad thought David was attacking her, and he was trying to protect her.

“Daddy,” she shouted, trying to let him know she was okay.

“Shut up!” her dad screamed back.

For a second, he leaned, and it looked like he was going to either hit her, or grab her by the hair, and yank her to her feet. She instinctively covered her head with both arms to protect herself from whatever might be about to happen. She heard more yelling, and all she could do was duck her head down against the bed, hoping she wasn’t about to be attacked.

She heard a lot of shuffling, banging, and scuffling. She peaked out for a second, and saw her dad, pushing David out of her room toward the living room. She stood up to follow.

“Daddy,” she said, a little too softly. She realized she was sobbing.

Her dad pushed David so hard, he bounced against the wall, and fell as he turned to try to catch his balance.

“Sit down!” her dad yelled, pointing an angry finger at her. “I’ll talk to you in a minute.”

He immediately turned back around, and caught David, who had started to regain his footing, and was turning to try to make an escape. He was punched in the back of the head before he was fully upright, and crashed into the piano, falling again. He was grabbed by the waist and neck of his clothing, and pulled upright. Kate had no idea her dad was so strong. David was a big guy, but her dad picked him up like he was a doll. He continued to push him across the rest of the living room, out the front door, and shoved him off the porch. David landed in the middle of the yard, rolling once, and quickly getting up, and running to his car.

“Come back again, and I’ll kill you!”

David took off as fast as his car would go. She was scared for him, but at least he was safe for today. Now it was her turn. She knew this would be bad. She had never prayed before, but prayed right then that God would help her. She thought about being in the hospital. She thought about what the beating would be like. She knew it would be much worse than anything she had ever had. Why was she so bad? Why had she gotten in his car? Why had she smoked that first time?

That was as far as she got before her dad was standing at her door, with a look of hatred that made her fear for her life. His jaws clenched tighter than his fists. His eyes were on fire, and stared at her for a second. They darted right, then left, and then back to her. Each time he set his eyes on her, they got harder. She braced herself, ready for an onslaught. After a few tense moments, he turned and walked away, closing her door behind him. She heard his door slam, and thought maybe it was over. Maybe he would get drunk, and go to sleep. After a few days, it would settle down, and as long as he didn’t see David over anymore, maybe it would be okay.

It was only a few seconds later, and he was back, yelling.

“I told you to stay away from him, and this is what you do? Bring him here?!?”

“Daddy, we just…” she started.

She only had time to see his hand start to move, and close her eyes.

It was the hardest he had hit her. And it wasn’t his fist. It was a slap. But it knocked her across the foot of her bed, and into the wall by her closet. Before she could do much of anything, she was being picked up by her hair, and thrown down onto her bed. He was pinning her down, his face inches from hers.

“How long have you been doing this?” he yelled. “Is this why you’re failing? Because you’re sleeping with him?!?”

There was beer on his breath, but she wasn’t sure when he could have been drinking. He had certainly just come in, and there is no way he could have had anything in the few seconds he had been out of her room.

“We haven’t…”

He slapped her again.

“Shut up! I know you’re lying”

“I’m sorry” she said between sobs. “I’m sorry.”

He raised his hand to hit her again, but paused. He set back a little. Then he leaned down, pressing his cheek against hers. He was crying now too.

“I’m sorry baby,” he said after a moment.

He kissed her cheek. Then he kissed her again. Then he assaulted her.

The next afternoon, he apologized again, telling her he had lost his job that morning. He wasn’t sure what was going to happen. He said he would do anything he could to keep them in their house. He would start looking for a new job, and would take any job that would pay their bills. He started crying again.

“I’m sorry baby. I don’t mean to do the things I do. It just overwhelms me. I don’t know what I’m going to do. I’m doing the best I can, and everything is coming apart. You’re sleeping with some guy, you’re failing school.”

“Don’t worry” she said. “We’ll get by. I could get a job after school…”

He looked at her incredulously for a moment. She realized what had just happened.

“And we aren’t sleeping together,” she said hurriedly, hoping he hadn’t caught it.

He just shook his head, disappointed. He knew. And she knew he knew. At least he wasn’t yelling at her.

“No.”

“But in the afternoon…”

“No daughter of mine is going to support her old man. My dad did that to me, and I’m not going to do it to you. You need to get those grades up. That’s all you need to think about. And I’m gonna be watching your friend. If I see you and him together again…”

His eyes were starting to harden again, and she could see his jaw clenching. She thought about trying to talk to him to calm him down, but thought it might do more harm than good. After a moment, he settled down, and got up.

“I’ve got to run to the store. I’ll be back in just a few minutes.”

Just a minute after he left, the phone rang. It was David.
“Are you okay?” he asked. “I wanted to call this morning. Howcome he didn’t go to work today?”

“I’m fine. He got fired yesterday. That’s why he was so upset. Are you okay?”

“Don’t worry about me,” he said. “I’ve been through worse. Can I come by?”

“He’s only going to be gone for a few minutes.”

“I’ve been driving down Tanglewilde, looking down the street. I’ve wanted to talk to you all day to make sure you are okay.”

“Don’t worry about me. We probably shouldn’t see each other for awhile.”

They talked for another minute, and got off the phone. She went to her room, and took the little bag out from under her bed, and went out in the backyard. She needed a little time to calm down. She changed her clothes when she came back in, and started a wash so he wouldn’t smell it on her.

Dinner that night was calm, but a little strained. Not much was said, and she was perfectly happy to have it that way. That evening, he went to his room, and she stayed in the living room. He came out once, and she was sitting on the couch, doing math homework. She wasn’t really doing much of it. She didn’t care anymore about her grades. But she wanted him to think she was really trying so he would not be as hard on her as he had been.

Wednesday morning, he got up, and got ready for work just like every other day. He was out of the house just as she was leaving for school. He kissed her on the forehead, and told her he loved her. He didn’t tell her that. She wondered if he was leaving, and not coming home.

Was he going to do something to himself? Was this his way of saying goodbye? Secretly, she hoped he would just commit suicide. Then she would be out of the mess. She felt badly for thinking that, but she kept playing out what it would be like to have him gone.

He came home that afternoon, and she could tell as soon as he walked in that he was drunk. How could he afford to buy any booze? He wasn’t working. Is that what he had done all day? Leave the house, and just go to a bar and drink? He disgusted her. And she realized that she really did wish he would go kill himself. She tried to put on a friendly face, but he wasn’t buying it. Maybe it was the guilt that he felt, expecting her to be mad at him. Maybe her face didn’t seem as happy as she was hoping it did.

“Why are you looking at me like that?” he challenged.

“Like what?” she asked, trying to sound as innocent as possible.

“You hate me.”

Wow. Obviously, she wasn’t hiding anything very well.

“I love you, daddy,” she said, and knew it didn’t come across as nicely as she had hoped. In fact, it sounded a little condescending.

“No you don’t. I don’t blame you. I hate me, too.”

He sat at the dining table, and a tear ran down his left cheek.

As much as she wanted not to care about him, she felt badly that he was hurting. She went to the table, and put her arms around him.

“I don’t hate you, daddy.”

He put his arms around her, and stood and held her close. Why couldn’t he love her like that all the time? Why was he so mean to her most of the time? She went to pull herself away, and ask him if he wanted her to fix him some dinner. He didn’t let go. She smiled, and tried to look up at him. Before she realized why he wasn’t letting go, he began to tear at her clothes. She knew what was coming, and tried to stop him. It was no use. He was far too strong. She looked toward the sink. There were the butcher knives, maybe she could reach one.

She felt horrible for even thinking that way. What he was doing to her was terribly wrong, but he was her father. He sickened her, and at that moment she hated him. But the thought that she wanted to kill him made her a little sick.

That night, she lay in bed, wishing he would get so drunk, he would just die. She wouldn’t have to hurt him, and he wouldn’t hurt her any more. She didn’t care that if he were gone, she would not have a place to live. Someone would help her out.

"Life will make a way," she had heard someone say years before.

“Even if I was to live on the street, it would be better than being here with him when he’s like this,” she thought.

She thought about her mother, and wondered where she was, and what she was doing. She wondered again why she had left. It must have been her. Why else would she leave? She began crying at first, and then got angry. It was the first time she realized she hated herself. And if she hated herself, how could anyone else, including her dad, love her?

She didn’t see David anymore after that night. She hoped to, but he was nowhere to be found. It was just as well. She missed him, but knew if her dad saw them together again, it would be even worse. Her dad was having problems finding a job, her grades were still in the dump, and they were fighting almost every night. She went from loving him, to not caring, to hating him. Almost daily, she found herself wishing he would just die. Over the next three weeks, he assaulted her several more times. One night, it was too much.

After he left her, and went into his room, she decided it was time to end things. No one cared about her. She didn’t care about anything. It was time to go. But she wasn’t going alone. She would take him out with her. He would pay for everything he had ever done to her. He would never hurt her again. She hated her mom for leaving, and letting everything happen. If she had any idea where her mother was, she would go find her, and kill her, too.

She waited long enough to know he would be passed out asleep. Quietly, she crept into his room, into his closet, and pulled out his shotgun. She knew how to use it, and she would make him suffer. She decided to shoot him in the stomach, watch him bleed, and listen to him cry for as long as she could stand it. She would then put him out of her misery, and then turn the gun on herself. There would be no note. No one cared anyway. What was the point?

According to her testimony, she went into the closet, and retrieved the gun. She pointed it at his stomach, but couldn’t pull the trigger. As much as she hated him right then, he was still her father. She couldn’t watch him suffer. But if she didn’t kill him, she would be beaten and assaulted again. So she aimed it at his face, and pulled the trigger. She screamed at the awful sight, and then started crying. She sat down on the bed, putting her mouth over the muzzle. Sobbing, she reached down, but before she could push the trigger, she started thinking about her life.

What a mess it was. How could her mom have left her? Why did her dad do those things to her? It wasn’t right. It wasn’t fair. Why could no one love her? She sobbed for several minutes, trying to make herself get it over with. She began crying so much, she collapsed on the floor.

She was still like that when the police forced their way into the house. She was arrested, but taken to the hospital after she told them her dad had assaulted her. It was confirmed that she had indeed been assaulted, and it was confirmed the next morning that it was her dad. They also found she was pregnant. It would have been enough of a scandal if it had been David’s. She knew it was her dad’s. She found herself wishing she had taken her life when she had the chance.

In her mind, her life was over. She would be an outcast. She didn’t have many friends before, but no one would like her now. Her mother had left, now her dad was gone. She would be in prison, pregnant and alone. What did she have to look forward to? There was no way she could raise a child on her own. Then she realized they wouldn’t let her keep the baby anyway. It would be put up for adoption.

But why would anyone want it?

She certainly didn’t.

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PostSubject: Re: 180 Degrees -- First Two Chapters   Thu Sep 08, 2011 3:04 pm

The story kept my attention all the way through. It has a very good plot. It's a bitter drama that, unfortunately, may girls experience and I think you're on your way to a great story here.
Here's a few suggestions:

The main thing that stood out to me was that when ever a climatic even took place, as in the following paragraphs, the reader didn't get to step through the events that actually happened.

When the girl experiences smoking marijuana for the first time, it would really help the story to step through what happened and how it made her feel. Why did she get hooked so quickly?:
"That only piqued her curiosity, and even though she knew it might be
going down a path she shouldn’t go down, she let him know that she
wanted to be with him, even if it meant doing things she shouldn’t be
doing. So David introduced her to marijuana. She was hooked."
The first time she becomes sexually active, what took place? I don't mean give explicit details, but describe where they were and the emotions that she experienced:
"By the time the school year rolled around, she was getting high almost
every day. She did most of it in the morning, so by the time her dad
got home; she would have most of it out of her system. She kept some
under her bed, so if it was a rough night, she could calm herself down,
and make it all go away. It was also during this time that she became
sexually active."
The same thing here. Where did it happen, and what was she feeling? Bring the reader into her world at that moment. Also, assaulted can mean hitting, so you might use sexually assaulted:
"He kissed her cheek. Then he kissed her again. Then he assaulted her."
The following lines were a bit confusing for me. What did she realize that just happened? Was she just sexually assaulted? Is she referring to the night before when she was? I wasn't sure:
“Don’t worry” she said. “We’ll get by. I could get a job after school…”

He looked at her incredulously for a moment. She realized what had just happened.
He hadn't caught what?:
“And we aren’t sleeping together,” she said hurriedly, hoping he hadn’t caught it.
What did they both know?:
He just shook his head, disappointed. He knew. And she knew he knew. At least he wasn’t yelling at her.
Is Tanglewilde her street? It might just read, that he'd been driving down her street:
“I’ve been driving down Tanglewilde, looking down the street. I’ve wanted to talk to you all day to make sure you are okay.”
There's a little confusion in this paragraph too. First, he tells her he loves her, then he doesn't. Perhaps say, "He never told her that before.":
Wednesday morning, he got up, and got ready for work just like every
other day. He was out of the house just as she was leaving for school.
He kissed her on the forehead, and told her he loved her. He didn’t
tell her that. She wondered if he was leaving, and not coming home.
This could be developed more. What was she thinking about besides killing him. As he was hurting her, did she close her eyes and try to pretend that it wasn't happening, was she in physical pain?:
She felt horrible for even thinking that way. What he was doing to her
was terribly wrong, but he was her father. He sickened her, and at that
moment she hated him. But the thought that she wanted to kill him made
her a little sick.
A nice touch to this story would be to describe the characters' physical movement more, to describe the surroundings more, to describe what the characters look like, etc.

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PostSubject: Re: 180 Degrees -- First Two Chapters   Sun Feb 05, 2012 3:38 am

I agree with the first commentator. Very gripping contents, but just needs more action descriptors, setting, sensory details, especially in the showing scenes. And I liked that you opened with action, but then I didn't really get if she was a wife, or a daughter till later. And then I didn't really get why you seemed to replay that scene? Or maybe you didn't and it was just so similar, I thought you did? And after the first opening scene, you seem to move on to narration and I'm not getting why you opened with that first scene. If it's in the same tiime frame as the opening action, then the narration needs some time indicators or different word usage to show that we're still in that moment. But my guess is, the scene ended and she starts telling us her story. And there is a lot of telling in one spot, consider breaking it up and seeing if you actually later show in action and live scenes what you tell in narration. Yeah, it's not uncommon for us Writers to repeat ourselves. Just check it out.

Yeah, oddly enough, these two chapters felt glossed over, almost like you wanted to get to a certain point. Maybe you could ask yourself, what point do I want to get to, and how long should I take to get there. Consider condensing this to one chapter, because the pregnancy and going to prison is definitely where I become hooked for the read. But before that, I'm just enduring abuse with no rhyme or reason in sight. And not many people have the stomach to endure that too long. I think if you worked on maybe two scenes of abuse and really made them potent, you could chop chop some stuff. I would break it down better, but it's difficult in this format. In Word I could highlight stuff that feels redundant or overwritten and stuff that feels underwritten. Sorry. I hope you can decipher my thoughts and only apply it where you see fit, this is your piece. But I try to crit in a way that serves the heart of the message in a piece. Ask me questions about your chapters if you need to, and I can answer them. I usually pick people brains when they read my work so I know what they think about what. So, if it helps you to do that, feel free to ask me anything you like and I'll do my best to answer helpfully and comprehensively.

Keep up the good work, I'm definitely wanting to read more.
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