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too predictable?

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  • ruaidh_uk <ruaidh_uk@yahoo.co.uk>
    KISSES FOR BENNY Come on Sarah, time for bed. said Rosemary, gently patting Sarah s leg as she lay curled up next to her on the couch. Sarah sat up and
    Message 1 of 3 , Jan 4, 2003
      KISSES FOR BENNY

      "Come on Sarah, time for bed." said Rosemary, gently patting Sarah's
      leg as she lay curled up next to her on the couch.

      Sarah sat up and rubbed her eyes. "Ok Mummy, I'm so tired!" she
      replied through a yawn.

      "I can see that." laughed Rosemary. "Come on, I'll you carry up." she
      added. She lifted Sarah into her arms, who promptly wound her arms
      around her mother's neck and her legs around her waist. "You're like
      a chimp." said Rosemary, heading for the stairs.

      She put Sarah down on her bedroom floor and pulled back the
      quilt. "Hop in." she said.

      Sarah climbed into bed. "I love you Mummy." she said.

      "I love you too Sweetpea." replied Rosemary. "Gimme a kiss."

      Sarah reached up and planted a kiss on her mother's cheek. After a
      slight pause she gave her another. "That's for Benny." she said
      quietly.

      Rosemary looked at her for a second, and feeling her eyes begin to
      water she scooped Sarah into her arms, giving her a big
      hug. "Goodnight Honey, sweet dreams." She tucked Sarah in, making
      sure she was comfortable, then left. Pausing at the bedroom door she
      looked back, a curious look on her face.

      Downstairs, Rosemary gazed out the window, `I wonder what made her do
      that tonight?' she thought. Turning, she picked up a photo album off
      the shelf, and sat down. Leafing through the pages, she stopped when
      she found the one she wanted. It had a single photograph placed in
      the middle, with a hand and foot print underneath, in ink. She traced
      them with her finger then looked at the picture of a baby boy.

      Her thoughts drifted back to her pregnancy. The day she found out,
      she was overjoyed. Sarah was just two years old, but even so Rosemary
      tried to involve her with the pregnancy as it progressed. She
      explained why she was growing `fatter' and let Sarah see the scan
      pictures of the baby. As her tummy grew larger, Sarah liked to put
      her hands on it to feel the baby kicking and would put her ear to it
      to try to hear the baby's heartbeat. Then one night at bedtime, after
      she kissed her mother goodnight, she gave Rosemary's tummy a cuddle
      and a kiss saying, "That's for the baby." From then on, Sarah always
      gave a kiss for the baby. A month or so later, Benjamin James
      Chadwick, affectionately known as Benny, emerged into the world,
      weighing 9lbs 3oz, and possessing a healthy set of lungs!

      `He was a beautiful baby.' thought Rosemary, continuing to stare at
      the picture. She lightly stroked the photo, tears welling in her eyes
      and slowly spilling over to drip down her cheek.

      Once home, Benny settled quickly, and although he never had a regular
      routine as such, he fitted into the family's life nicely. He slept
      and fed, a contented baby most of the time, but when he wasn't he
      made sure you knew about it! Sarah accepted him straight away,
      showing no signs of jealousy. Instead, she was eager to do all she
      could in helping care for him, fetching nappies and gently shougling
      the pram if he was restless.

      One morning Rosemary awoke, and looking at the clock she saw it was
      nearly 8am. Pleasantly surprised to find that Benny had slept all
      night, she got out of bed and went through to the children's bedroom.
      Sarah was sitting on the floor by the side of her bed playing with
      her toys. Rosemary walked over and sat on the bed. "Good morning
      Sweetpea. Did you have a nice sleep?" she asked, ruffling Sarah's
      hair and planting a kiss on top of her head.

      "Yes Mummy." replied Sarah.

      "I think Benny's had a nice sleep too. I didn't hear him cry once
      during the night, did you?" asked Rosemary.

      Sarah shook her head. "Benny cold." she said.

      "Benny's cold?" Rosemary questioned.

      Sarah nodded, "Me put blankie." she said.

      Rosemary looked at her for a moment, then, with trepidation, she
      crossed the room to the cot. She saw the blanket that Sarah had tried
      to push through the bars and slowly her eyes travelled up it til she
      could see Benny. He looked as he always did when he was sleeping,
      except this morning there was no mistaking the tinge to his skin.
      Rosemary held her breath, anxiously waiting to hear the soft sound of
      his, but it never came.

      Rosemary's tears washed anew as she painfully recalled the memories
      of that day; frantically splashing cold water on his face; giving him
      mouth to mouth, desperate to blow life into his tiny limp body; the
      agonising wait til the ambulance arrived, and the numbing realisation
      that nothing could save her son.

      Sarah had been too young to understand properly, still was. At first
      she asked about him constantly, when was he coming home, but
      gradually the questions dwindled and Rosemary thought she had
      forgotten.

      Through tear glistened eyes, she studied Benny's picture and wondered
      what he might've looked like now. Sarah's voice came into her
      head, `That's for Benny', and kissing her fingertip, she touched the
      picture with it, then clutched the book to her heaving chest as she
      sobbed quietly.
    • jerry5849
      Hello, In the title of your post, you ask too predictable? I don t understand why a small piece of a larger work couldn t or shouldn t be predictable. I
      Message 2 of 3 , Jan 6, 2003
        Hello,
        In the title of your post, you ask "too predictable?" I don't
        understand why a small piece of a larger work couldn't or shouldn't
        be predictable. I think predictability is a wonderful tool to set
        the background of a piece. It pulls the reader in with familiarity,
        giving him/her a backdrop on which you then show your tale.
        Predictability is a familiar canvas on which to paint your story,
        adding twists and turns along the way, which in turn keep the reader
        guessing and questioning the motivations of the characters, plus the
        causes and effects associated with their interaction.
        On the other hand, if what you have posted is the entire piece of
        work, being too predictable negates any surprise factor for the
        reader. The question then becomes, "why write it in the first
        place?"
        An author has to balance predictability with surprise and suspense,
        but of course I'm sure you are already well aware of that. I hope
        my comments have been a help.

        As always,
        Jerry
        jerry5849@...


        --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "ruaidh_uk <ruaidh_uk@y...>"
        <ruaidh_uk@y...> wrote:
        > KISSES FOR BENNY
        >
        > "Come on Sarah, time for bed." said Rosemary, gently patting
        Sarah's
        > leg as she lay curled up next to her on the couch.
        >
        > Sarah sat up and rubbed her eyes. "Ok Mummy, I'm so tired!" she
        > replied through a yawn.
        >
        > "I can see that." laughed Rosemary. "Come on, I'll you carry up."
        she
        > added. She lifted Sarah into her arms, who promptly wound her arms
        > around her mother's neck and her legs around her waist. "You're
        like
        > a chimp." said Rosemary, heading for the stairs.
        >
        > She put Sarah down on her bedroom floor and pulled back the
        > quilt. "Hop in." she said.
        >
        > Sarah climbed into bed. "I love you Mummy." she said.
        >
        > "I love you too Sweetpea." replied Rosemary. "Gimme a kiss."
        >
        > Sarah reached up and planted a kiss on her mother's cheek. After a
        > slight pause she gave her another. "That's for Benny." she said
        > quietly.
        >
        > Rosemary looked at her for a second, and feeling her eyes begin to
        > water she scooped Sarah into her arms, giving her a big
        > hug. "Goodnight Honey, sweet dreams." She tucked Sarah in, making
        > sure she was comfortable, then left. Pausing at the bedroom door
        she
        > looked back, a curious look on her face.
        >
        > Downstairs, Rosemary gazed out the window, `I wonder what made her
        do
        > that tonight?' she thought. Turning, she picked up a photo album
        off
        > the shelf, and sat down. Leafing through the pages, she stopped
        when
        > she found the one she wanted. It had a single photograph placed in
        > the middle, with a hand and foot print underneath, in ink. She
        traced
        > them with her finger then looked at the picture of a baby boy.
        >
        > Her thoughts drifted back to her pregnancy. The day she found out,
        > she was overjoyed. Sarah was just two years old, but even so
        Rosemary
        > tried to involve her with the pregnancy as it progressed. She
        > explained why she was growing `fatter' and let Sarah see the scan
        > pictures of the baby. As her tummy grew larger, Sarah liked to put
        > her hands on it to feel the baby kicking and would put her ear to
        it
        > to try to hear the baby's heartbeat. Then one night at bedtime,
        after
        > she kissed her mother goodnight, she gave Rosemary's tummy a
        cuddle
        > and a kiss saying, "That's for the baby." From then on, Sarah
        always
        > gave a kiss for the baby. A month or so later, Benjamin James
        > Chadwick, affectionately known as Benny, emerged into the world,
        > weighing 9lbs 3oz, and possessing a healthy set of lungs!
        >
        > `He was a beautiful baby.' thought Rosemary, continuing to stare
        at
        > the picture. She lightly stroked the photo, tears welling in her
        eyes
        > and slowly spilling over to drip down her cheek.
        >
        > Once home, Benny settled quickly, and although he never had a
        regular
        > routine as such, he fitted into the family's life nicely. He slept
        > and fed, a contented baby most of the time, but when he wasn't he
        > made sure you knew about it! Sarah accepted him straight away,
        > showing no signs of jealousy. Instead, she was eager to do all she
        > could in helping care for him, fetching nappies and gently
        shougling
        > the pram if he was restless.
        >
        > One morning Rosemary awoke, and looking at the clock she saw it
        was
        > nearly 8am. Pleasantly surprised to find that Benny had slept all
        > night, she got out of bed and went through to the children's
        bedroom.
        > Sarah was sitting on the floor by the side of her bed playing with
        > her toys. Rosemary walked over and sat on the bed. "Good morning
        > Sweetpea. Did you have a nice sleep?" she asked, ruffling Sarah's
        > hair and planting a kiss on top of her head.
        >
        > "Yes Mummy." replied Sarah.
        >
        > "I think Benny's had a nice sleep too. I didn't hear him cry once
        > during the night, did you?" asked Rosemary.
        >
        > Sarah shook her head. "Benny cold." she said.
        >
        > "Benny's cold?" Rosemary questioned.
        >
        > Sarah nodded, "Me put blankie." she said.
        >
        > Rosemary looked at her for a moment, then, with trepidation, she
        > crossed the room to the cot. She saw the blanket that Sarah had
        tried
        > to push through the bars and slowly her eyes travelled up it til
        she
        > could see Benny. He looked as he always did when he was sleeping,
        > except this morning there was no mistaking the tinge to his skin.
        > Rosemary held her breath, anxiously waiting to hear the soft sound
        of
        > his, but it never came.
        >
        > Rosemary's tears washed anew as she painfully recalled the
        memories
        > of that day; frantically splashing cold water on his face; giving
        him
        > mouth to mouth, desperate to blow life into his tiny limp body;
        the
        > agonising wait til the ambulance arrived, and the numbing
        realisation
        > that nothing could save her son.
        >
        > Sarah had been too young to understand properly, still was. At
        first
        > she asked about him constantly, when was he coming home, but
        > gradually the questions dwindled and Rosemary thought she had
        > forgotten.
        >
        > Through tear glistened eyes, she studied Benny's picture and
        wondered
        > what he might've looked like now. Sarah's voice came into her
        > head, `That's for Benny', and kissing her fingertip, she touched
        the
        > picture with it, then clutched the book to her heaving chest as
        she
        > sobbed quietly.
      • ruaidh_uk <ruaidh_uk@yahoo.co.uk>
        Jerry, the piece I posted was complete. The reason I was asking if it was too predictable was because I didn t want the reader getting so far then thinking oh
        Message 3 of 3 , Jan 7, 2003
          Jerry, the piece I posted was complete. The reason I was asking if it
          was too predictable was because I didn't want the reader getting so
          far then thinking "oh the baby died" then switching off & not reading
          the rest, I wanted to know if they would continue reading to the end.
          I am well aware of the balancing act of writing, but occassionally
          like to confirm with others that I'm getting it right. Although your
          feedback was helpful I didn't feel it answered my question in
          relation to this particular piece of work.

          ruaidh


          --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, jerry5849 <no_reply@y...> wrote:
          >
          > Hello,
          > In the title of your post, you ask "too predictable?" I don't
          > understand why a small piece of a larger work couldn't or shouldn't
          > be predictable. I think predictability is a wonderful tool to set
          > the background of a piece. It pulls the reader in with
          familiarity,
          > giving him/her a backdrop on which you then show your tale.
          > Predictability is a familiar canvas on which to paint your story,
          > adding twists and turns along the way, which in turn keep the
          reader
          > guessing and questioning the motivations of the characters, plus
          the
          > causes and effects associated with their interaction.
          > On the other hand, if what you have posted is the entire piece of
          > work, being too predictable negates any surprise factor for the
          > reader. The question then becomes, "why write it in the first
          > place?"
          > An author has to balance predictability with surprise and suspense,
          > but of course I'm sure you are already well aware of that. I hope
          > my comments have been a help.
          >
          > As always,
          > Jerry
          > jerry5849@y...
          >
          >
          > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "ruaidh_uk <ruaidh_uk@y...>"
          > <ruaidh_uk@y...> wrote:
          > > KISSES FOR BENNY
          > >
          > > "Come on Sarah, time for bed." said Rosemary, gently patting
          > Sarah's
          > > leg as she lay curled up next to her on the couch.
          > >
          > > Sarah sat up and rubbed her eyes. "Ok Mummy, I'm so tired!" she
          > > replied through a yawn.
          > >
          > > "I can see that." laughed Rosemary. "Come on, I'll you carry up."
          > she
          > > added. She lifted Sarah into her arms, who promptly wound her
          arms
          > > around her mother's neck and her legs around her waist. "You're
          > like
          > > a chimp." said Rosemary, heading for the stairs.
          > >
          > > She put Sarah down on her bedroom floor and pulled back the
          > > quilt. "Hop in." she said.
          > >
          > > Sarah climbed into bed. "I love you Mummy." she said.
          > >
          > > "I love you too Sweetpea." replied Rosemary. "Gimme a kiss."
          > >
          > > Sarah reached up and planted a kiss on her mother's cheek. After
          a
          > > slight pause she gave her another. "That's for Benny." she said
          > > quietly.
          > >
          > > Rosemary looked at her for a second, and feeling her eyes begin
          to
          > > water she scooped Sarah into her arms, giving her a big
          > > hug. "Goodnight Honey, sweet dreams." She tucked Sarah in, making
          > > sure she was comfortable, then left. Pausing at the bedroom door
          > she
          > > looked back, a curious look on her face.
          > >
          > > Downstairs, Rosemary gazed out the window, `I wonder what made
          her
          > do
          > > that tonight?' she thought. Turning, she picked up a photo album
          > off
          > > the shelf, and sat down. Leafing through the pages, she stopped
          > when
          > > she found the one she wanted. It had a single photograph placed
          in
          > > the middle, with a hand and foot print underneath, in ink. She
          > traced
          > > them with her finger then looked at the picture of a baby boy.
          > >
          > > Her thoughts drifted back to her pregnancy. The day she found
          out,
          > > she was overjoyed. Sarah was just two years old, but even so
          > Rosemary
          > > tried to involve her with the pregnancy as it progressed. She
          > > explained why she was growing `fatter' and let Sarah see the scan
          > > pictures of the baby. As her tummy grew larger, Sarah liked to
          put
          > > her hands on it to feel the baby kicking and would put her ear to
          > it
          > > to try to hear the baby's heartbeat. Then one night at bedtime,
          > after
          > > she kissed her mother goodnight, she gave Rosemary's tummy a
          > cuddle
          > > and a kiss saying, "That's for the baby." From then on, Sarah
          > always
          > > gave a kiss for the baby. A month or so later, Benjamin James
          > > Chadwick, affectionately known as Benny, emerged into the world,
          > > weighing 9lbs 3oz, and possessing a healthy set of lungs!
          > >
          > > `He was a beautiful baby.' thought Rosemary, continuing to stare
          > at
          > > the picture. She lightly stroked the photo, tears welling in her
          > eyes
          > > and slowly spilling over to drip down her cheek.
          > >
          > > Once home, Benny settled quickly, and although he never had a
          > regular
          > > routine as such, he fitted into the family's life nicely. He
          slept
          > > and fed, a contented baby most of the time, but when he wasn't he
          > > made sure you knew about it! Sarah accepted him straight away,
          > > showing no signs of jealousy. Instead, she was eager to do all
          she
          > > could in helping care for him, fetching nappies and gently
          > shougling
          > > the pram if he was restless.
          > >
          > > One morning Rosemary awoke, and looking at the clock she saw it
          > was
          > > nearly 8am. Pleasantly surprised to find that Benny had slept all
          > > night, she got out of bed and went through to the children's
          > bedroom.
          > > Sarah was sitting on the floor by the side of her bed playing
          with
          > > her toys. Rosemary walked over and sat on the bed. "Good morning
          > > Sweetpea. Did you have a nice sleep?" she asked, ruffling Sarah's
          > > hair and planting a kiss on top of her head.
          > >
          > > "Yes Mummy." replied Sarah.
          > >
          > > "I think Benny's had a nice sleep too. I didn't hear him cry once
          > > during the night, did you?" asked Rosemary.
          > >
          > > Sarah shook her head. "Benny cold." she said.
          > >
          > > "Benny's cold?" Rosemary questioned.
          > >
          > > Sarah nodded, "Me put blankie." she said.
          > >
          > > Rosemary looked at her for a moment, then, with trepidation, she
          > > crossed the room to the cot. She saw the blanket that Sarah had
          > tried
          > > to push through the bars and slowly her eyes travelled up it til
          > she
          > > could see Benny. He looked as he always did when he was sleeping,
          > > except this morning there was no mistaking the tinge to his skin.
          > > Rosemary held her breath, anxiously waiting to hear the soft
          sound
          > of
          > > his, but it never came.
          > >
          > > Rosemary's tears washed anew as she painfully recalled the
          > memories
          > > of that day; frantically splashing cold water on his face; giving
          > him
          > > mouth to mouth, desperate to blow life into his tiny limp body;
          > the
          > > agonising wait til the ambulance arrived, and the numbing
          > realisation
          > > that nothing could save her son.
          > >
          > > Sarah had been too young to understand properly, still was. At
          > first
          > > she asked about him constantly, when was he coming home, but
          > > gradually the questions dwindled and Rosemary thought she had
          > > forgotten.
          > >
          > > Through tear glistened eyes, she studied Benny's picture and
          > wondered
          > > what he might've looked like now. Sarah's voice came into her
          > > head, `That's for Benny', and kissing her fingertip, she touched
          > the
          > > picture with it, then clutched the book to her heaving chest as
          > she
          > > sobbed quietly.
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