Prologue For A Book I'm Writing

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Pepsiman98, Jan 8, 2011.

  1. Pepsiman98

    Pepsiman98 Consulting Criminal

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    Some of you may remember a thread of mine from a while back about a book I was trying to write. That book has been named "Temporal Displacement". After a year of procrastinating, I finally got the prologue rough draft down. It's somewhat short, but I will make it longer in the final draft. Please give your opinions on this so I may improve my writing in the future.

    Prologue
    November 5, 2011

    It started like any other day, but quickly spiraled into a nightmare. Dr. Jeff Stevenson got up out of bed and looked at his bedside clock: 7:00 am. He still had plenty of time to get to work. He put on his work clothes (khaki pants, a blue polo shirt and a red and blue striped tie) and walked over to his coffee maker and looked out the kitchen window; It was a nice day out, there wasn't supposed to be any rain. He then poured himself a cup of coffee and walked to the garage door. He opened it and walked to his recently acquired Nissan 300ZX. It handled rather well, and was fun to drive. He opened the garage door. After getting in his car, he set down his coffee in the cup-holder and put the keys into the ignition. He turned it, and the engine started up. He backed out, careful not to hit anything. He turned the wheel to the left and backed out into the street, put the car in drive, and started on his way to work. There was no one out yet, it was pretty peaceful that way. He took a sip of his coffee. He turned left on to another street, and continued on his way. It was a nice day out; he rolled down the window to let in some fresh air. He could see the NinTech Building now, just one more stoplight to go. The building itself was nothing special, just a square, 52-story tall building with the company logo at the top. He took another sip. The light turned green, and a second or so after he stepped on the gas a semi truck hurtled by. He turned the wheel and slammed his foot on the brake. As expected, his car swerved.

    The edge of the truck just barely missed him. The truck mowed over a lamp post, smashing it to pieces, and tore the edge off a wall of a nearby Burger King before hitting a tree. It was a Seiech Truck. That was the first sign. After getting the spilled coffee out of the passenger seat, he continued into the parking lot and backed into his reserved spot. He unbuckled, opened the door, and got out of the car. He pulled out his briefcase from the trunk, and continued to the front doors of the building. Once inside, he signed in at the front desk, and started towards the elevator. He noticed a group of shady looking men in suits standing in the waiting area. That was the second sign. One of the men looked up and noticed him. He pointed at Jeff, and the rest of the men turned towards him. Dr. Stevenson made a sprint for the elevator. The lady behind the desk politely opened the elevator doors for him. The men were almost on him when he made it into the elevator. The doors shut quickly before the men could get in. He pushed the button for the fifty-first floor, the elevator started up on it's way shortly after. He knew he didn't have much time. He thought about his son John, when he remembered that he had left the T.E.D.D. 1.9 in his closet. Seeing his situation now, that was the best thing that's happened to him today. T.E.D.D. stood for TEmporal Displacement Device. He had spent 5 years figuring out how to make time travel work. Once he had, he presented it to the NinTech CEO. His project was approved and his team spent the next year constructing the thing. It was a projector at its base, but the team had done extensive modifications to it internally as well as externally. There had been many setbacks, but it was finished in the spring of '88 Several upgrades had been made to it along the way.

    He had been instructed to keep it as secret as possible, with absolutely no one to know about this but themselves. The company wasn't in it for the money, they were in it to bring about a new technological age, because if time travel was possible, everything would be a piece of cake from there. NinTech would get every penny spent on the T.E.D.D. back from the emerging technologies. I'm not suggesting that they would go into the future, grab some new technology, and go back with it. I'm saying that they would use it as a model for future projects and inspirational and historical purposes. Unfortunately, NinTech's rival, Seiech has other plans in mind. The doors opened, and Dr. Stevenson ran to the phone to call his son. “Hello?” his son answered groggily. “John, you know that the T.E.D.D. is in my closet, right?” Jeff asked. “Yeah, do you want me to tell Mom to bring it to you?” his son asked. “No, I want you to hide it where absolutely no one will find it, you understand?” his father answered. “ Is something wrong?” The elevator doors opened. “Dad?” The shady men from earlier walked out. “I have to go, but I-” one of the men pulled out a pistol and shot at the phone multiple times. “What was that?” John asked nervously. The phone was blown up by one of the gun shots. John Stevenson put down the phone slowly. He immediately ran to the closet and pulled out the T.E.D.D. He hid it in the most secure place he could think of. He lifted up a floor panel in his room. There was an indention large enough for the projector. He lifted up the false bottom of the indention and hid the T.E.D.D. in there. He closed the false bottom and the floor panel and threw a rug over it just in case. He plopped himself down on the bed, wondering what had become of his father.
     
  2. John_Force

    John_Force 16xNHRA Funny Car Champ TFW2005 Supporter

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    I'm getting a serious Steven King vibe from this. And I like it.
    Problems are that, IMHO, you're going into too much detail about the whole waking up and getting into his car. Other than that, besides a missed period on the last sentence of the second paragraph, it sounds really good.
     
  3. Moonscream

    Moonscream YES, We EXIST!

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    When you change the subject, location, point of view, time...you need to make a new paragraph. When a different person is talking, again, new paragraph even if that means just one line.

    Is there really a need for all that detail about him getting into his car, etc? Why didn't he stop at the accident like most people would? Why is this a prologue and not the beginning of the first chapter? Will it really be adding essential information to the body of the story?

    --Moony
     
  4. Pepsiman98

    Pepsiman98 Consulting Criminal

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    Thanks! I thought about that when I wrote it, I'll fix it when I get back to it.
    1. I was copying it over from OpenOffice and the new "paragraphs" are just the spaces where the page ended.

    2. It mainly has to do with the truck being from NinTech's rival and purposely trying to off him. At that point Jeff knew he had to warn his son; The Seiech men at the building further adding to that.

    3. I was wondering about that. I'm thinking of doing the rest of the chapters in 1st-Person from John's or his friend's point of view, because 3rd-Person is not my best veiwpoint.
     
  5. Moonscream

    Moonscream YES, We EXIST!

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    So was it a wall of text then, or did 'porting it over here erase all of your formatting?

    This could and should be dealt with within the story, there doesn't need to be a prologue for it.

    Then you should have all information be what John knows, not what others, like his father, know or experience...unless they tell John or experience it with him. Include what's essential from the prologue as something that Jeff tells him and eliminate the prologue entirely. If John doesn't know or experience it, the reader shouldn't either. That way revelations will be as much of a surprise to the reader as they are to John, and much more affecting for that reason.

    --Moony
     
  6. Omegatron

    Omegatron Mandatory Fun. Buy it now TFW2005 Supporter

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    You could label the prologue "Jeff," and make it his part. Then, when the rest of the book starts, label each chapter "John at Home" or "Larry's Buick," or other very brief chapter titles to describe the POV. Then your narrator can shift with ease, depending on what you need. I might also end the first paragraph by leaving off your initial sentence, and then ending that paragraph, "He had no idea he had less than 5 minutes to live." It'll catch your readers off guard a bit, and heighten the excitement for what's coming next.
     
  7. Pepsiman98

    Pepsiman98 Consulting Criminal

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    1. A little of both.

    2.I was referring to your question of why Jeff didn't stop at the accident.

    3.Thanks for the advice, I'll keep it in mind.
     
  8. Wolfguard

    Wolfguard Your own personal Jesus.

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    From one writer/creator to another, keep your ideas guarded. There are people who are really keen to swipe 'em. Even if they give you credit for the work, a repost on another site is something you want to avoid. I had this happen with some artwork I posted, and while they were concepts I was not going to use, i.e. I didn't care that they were public images, I had one guy copy and post them on another message board without asking for my approval. He gave me credit, but did anyone else copy them and claim credit for my work?
     
  9. Pepsiman98

    Pepsiman98 Consulting Criminal

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    (I'm officially back from Lurker-ville. :D ) I've been going through my old posts basically to point and laugh at myself (holy god there was a point where I didn't capitalize anything and used 'plz' on multiple occasions) and I have to say that this cracks me up. My writing has gotten way better and this particular story has evolved so much since I posted this that it's almost unrecognizable: it's now called "Event Collapse", takes place in 1987, is about Jeff now (who I'm considering renaming), and has nothing to do with time-travel anymore. XD
     

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