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Brier Delman
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January 2012
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Brier Delman [userpic]
"It had rained for days"

The Delman house sat on the side of the slope of a hill, an hours walk from the town of Sweetwater. It was a one room affair, composed of a mishmash of wood, plaster, mud and thatch and on a sunny day the white and tan, brown and green against the backdrop of the woods and hemmed in by the gardens and the field made the Delman place a charming little scene.

Today was not a sunny day. And Brier Delman did not have the luxury of looking at the place from outside. From where she sat, under the leaking roof and crammed, cheek to jowl, in with the other eight inhabitants of the room she failed to be charmed.

Two of these eight people, Cerise and the baby, did not belong. Since she had the baby Cerise was always hanging around here. Brier shared a bed with her, while the brothers all piled into the loft, but the loft leaked more than the rest of the house. Today the three youngest boys were around the table, in various attitudes of boredom. Only Emmett, the eldest of those present, was on his feet, helping his father attempt to repair the leak in the corner of the room.

Darys, the oldest of the three at the table, was shucking peas without enthusiasm. Brier turned from them to the mending in her hand and eked out a few more stitches from her sore fingers before the baby, beside her in his mother's arms, began to wail.

Brier felt that she could sympathize with the urge to scream.

If only the weather would clear so they could stretch their legs, wash the clothes, dry their feet, sweep out the mud and Ceci could take her loud baby and go home.

“Watch your stitches.” Cerise said, from beside her. “Or I will take it out and make you do it again”

Brier looked up from her sewing to her sister's face. Ceci had Brier's coloring for the most part, but there was more of a blush to her cheeks and lips. Her hair was thicker and waved slightly as it fell around her shoulders when it was down. She had always been pretty and the roundness her cheeks and figure had taken on through pregnancy suited her, but the tired look she had taken on since the birth did not.

“I'm not a child anymore.” Brier said.

“Then don't sew like one.”

Brier put down the trousers and got up to join Darys with the peas.


Hi! This is a writerverse critique! One thing I love about this is how real the setting is. I love the detail that went into the house is superb. Brier also feels very alive and relatable. One thing to watch out for is all the characters, by the end I was having trouble keeping track of who was who and when you used a nickname, I had to reread to figure out who it was.

Edited at 2012-02-21 03:04 am (UTC)

Thanks for the review!

I will try to be careful about the nicknames in the future. I just kind of gave up on the exercise but I had liked the feel of it, which was why I posted it. I will try to be more careful from here on

Hi! This is a writerverse critique, and it is my first, so I hope I'm doing this right!

Your imagery is fantastic. You really made me see the house and its inhabitants so clearly. The claustrophobic feeling of all those people jammed into one room. I did feel, though, that the second sentence had a little too much description, and was a little run on.

This is a lovely beginning (to a longer piece, I hope?)! Your description is lovely, and I really got a feel for the characters and their damp and dreary situation. I love how you started it, describing the setting and then jumping right into the scene. It was great :)

The only thing I'd like to point out is a few run on sentence issues and some comma issues. The first paragraph could probably be broken into two sentences and that would fix it. And here's an example of a missed comma: If only the weather would clear so they could stretch their legs, wash the clothes, dry their feet, sweep out the mud(comma) and Ceci could take her loud baby and go home. "Ceci could take her baby and go home" is an independent clause, so you need to put the comma there.

I've really enjoyed this story, and I'm looking forward to more if you write it!! I hope you post it to the group!! Thanks for sharing!