Wednesday, April 7, 2010

WIPs On Wednesday...

A segment of  Chapter Two...(MG HF)

“Come on Luv.” Mummy took Gina’s hand and I followed them into our house.

“Oh dear, what a mess! That Mister Hitler is a horrid man. You stay in the sitting room whilst I clean up the broken glass.”

We stood and watch Mummy sweep up all the shards of glass and dust of the furniture. Gina held Dolly. Dolly was special to Gina, she was her only doll. Grandma knitted her and gave her to Gina for her last birthday. Dolly was filthy.

“Can we give Dolly a bath?” Gina looked up at me with sad eyes.

“That sounds like a smashing idea.” Gina and I took Dolly to the kitchen sink and turned the water on. A little trickle of brown water came out of the tap. “Mummy, there’s something wrong with the tap. Only brown water is coming out.”

“The bombs must have broken a pipe. It’ll be alright, we just have to make do. At least we still have a house.” Mummy shook her head and gazed out of what once was our kitchen window.

Knock, Knock, Knock

“Come in,” Mummy called out. Mrs. Haskell and her two boys Bill and Alexander came in. They had gathered all they could from what was left of their home. Mrs. Haskell was weeping.

“How shall we ever live?” she asked. “Our house and a meager pension was all I had. James barely left us enough to survive on without all of this.”

Mummy walked over to Mrs. Haskell and put her arms around her shoulders. “Mary, it’ll be alright. You and the boys can stay with us until the war is over. We’ll figure out what to do after that. Don’t worry yourself, Deary.”

“Ta, Janet. What we do without you?”

What do you think?  How's the dialogue? Is the Knock Knock Knock distruptive?

Don't forget to go to Susan and Amy's blogs to enter their wonderful contests...
Shannon is having a celebration over at her blog...check it out..she's got some great signed books that she's giving away.


  1. I'm assuming this is in the UK? You will know that dialect well, I like it so far. My only question is did they say whilst and would she say Mister Hitler? (Mister?) I have no idea how the British spoke then so it could be spot on for all I know, but I just thought I'd ask!! :)
    Also, the knock, knock, knock might be better as something like "The sudden thumping on the door startled me." Something that includes the main character more?
    Thank you for letting us take a peek into your historical piece!

  2. I agree with Kelly, I'm ignorant about British speech patterns, so it sounds okay to me. I enjoyed the piece!

  3. Kelly--I've got to do some research on "whilst." I thought that as I wrote it and posted it. I heard a video clip of a person saying referring to Hitler as Mister Hitler...Great idea on my knocking dilema. Thanks!

    DL--Thanks. :) I'm glad you liked it.

  4. Sounds good, Sharon! The only thing I'd say is that you had several "was"'s in the third paragraph. I thought you could give more description of how "filthy" Dolly was, and that we'd know Dolly was special just because she was her only doll. I'm sorry - I'm so used to critiquing your work I feel compelled to make at least one suggestion. And thanks for the shout-out on my contest!

  5. Susan--Thanks for the super suggestions...You know you'll see this again. :) What would I do without my WADmates?

  6. I am not that familiar with British speech....but loved the "Mister Hitler". Enjoyed the read!

  7. Okay, I'm originally from England (moved to the states when I was 11) but it's been along time since I've been back. However, I have no problem with Mister. Sounds right to me. As a mg kid, I wouldn't have known what whilst meant. Never used it.

  8. MaDonna--Thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed it. :) Now I'e just got to write more of it...

    Stina--I moved to the States from England when I was 8. I go back every couple years, now that we can afford the travel. I went from the time I was 9 until I was 25 without going at all. Thanks for your input. :)

  9. Just moved here from the UK. That photograph makes me long to go back. The language seems fine to me. Whilst is used--at least where I lived. I don't think I ever heard anyone say while.

    As for the story itself, it was a poignant illustration of the immediate aftermath of a shelling. Nicely done. The child's voice comes through nicely.

  10. Carolina--Where were you from? I think I took that photo from the train between London and Little Hampton.

    Thanks for your input. When I wrote "whilst" I thought it sounded right for the time. I'll have to ask my Grandad the next time I talk to him.

    Sorry you're homesick. It's funny I only lived there for the first 8.5 years, but I get homesick too. For me I think it's about my relatives and what I don't know about where I came from.

    Thanks for sharing. :)

  11. I was a court-reporter whilst living in England, and I love the dialog, but it threw me how many words I simply did not recognize. I once stopped a murder trial because I just could not understand someone saying the word The. They had to spell it for me. Most embarrassing.
    Your dialog, and story, is wonderful.

  12. I sent you an e-mail with my edit. Great stuff here. I don't think there is a way for me to upload my thoughts so that others may benefit. Anyway, keep up with the writing. You're awesome!

  13. I don't know enough about English dialect to give this a proper critique, but I have to say you've got an interesting start here. I'm assuming the narrator is a child? Can't wait to see where you go with this!

  14. I too am not familar with UK dialogue but I find it intriguing all the same. Good luck!

  15. I think the dialogue is strong. And the descriptive details do seem to be ones a child would pick up on. Agree with Kelly on bringing the knocking into the narrative more seamlessly. Also, third para... should be 'watched' instead of 'watch' to have consistent tenses throughout.

  16. Judith--That's really funny. I think the accents vary a lot for a small country.

    Buffy--Thanks so much! You are a rock star in my world!

    LILA--Joyce is the MC, she's about ten. I hope I do something wonderful with the story too. I really am passionate about sharing it...It was an amazing time, something we couldn't fathom happening today...

    Donna--Thanks for stopping by and for the well wishes. :)

    Bluestocking--Thanks for the input and for ctaching my tense error....Much appreciated. :)