Section #3a Assignment – Protagonist Scene

These assignments are getting harder.

I have submitted this, and of course I find better ways to write it after submission — let’s see if you catch the parts I didn’t like …

The assignment was 250 words of a scene that describes the protagonist and their motive for solving the crime.  I was not able to get this into 250 words, obviously.  Hopefully the instructor won’t have a cow.

Protagonist

Tiny dust particles danced in soft golden rays that filtered down from the main barn’s skylights.   Mollie peered through the haze, filling her lungs with the scents of oiled leather and fresh cedar shavings and manure.  She felt her grandfather’s presence all around her in the dusky sunlight, and was momentarily overcome by a surge of vivid memories.  This is where she learned about his deep kinship with horses.  Where he taught her about their care and training, how they communicate, how to build relationships with them.  Over time, she grew to understand his passion.  Then somewhere along the way, she found she had embraced it as her own.

She shook herself out of her thoughts and moved quickly down the breezeway, reading the name cards posted on stall doors as she passed them, 22 in all.  She stopped at the last stall on the right.  She had found the sign she was looking for.

“HORSE:  Loki.  OWNER:  Azalia Morales.”

A gray-dun mustang was standing quietly at the back of the stall.  “Hey little boy,” Mollie said in a low voice.  “Come say hi.”

She opened the top half of the stall door and held her hand out to him.    The small horse took a few tentative steps toward her.  His inquiring muzzle hopefully investigated her fingers.  Food?

Mollie responded to his nosing with a quick caress, then withdrew her hand and closed the door.  Next she headed to the tack room.  She was looking for a small endurance saddle.  She found it sitting on a metal rack bolted low on the back wall.  A nylon saddle bag was on the floor under the rack.  It was purple with black straps and piping – Azalia’s colors.

Mollie grabbed the bag and unzipped its large main pocket.  She found a hoof pick, empty water bottle, and other trail-handy items, then noticed a sun-faded violet bandanna tucked under them.  The bandanna was wrapped around a small drawstring pouch made of beaded deerskin.  A medicine bag.

The pouch’s drawstring pulled open easily and Mollie slipped a few fingers inside.  She felt metal.   Her finger hooked a chain and she lifted it out.  A darkly tarnished silver cylinder, 3 inches long and a half-inch in diameter, dangled from the chain.   A guardapelo, a locket made in Central America, the long oval shape intended to hold strands of a loved one’s hair.  Her stomach dropped as she recognized the inscription “M A B” engraved in simple block letters on one end of the cylinder.

Instantly, Mollie was overcome by another memory.  She was eight years old again.  She was watching her beloved aunt Miranda coil a thin strand she had cut from Mollie’s long dark hair.   Then Miranda was placing the strand inside the guardapelo.  Slipping its long chain over her head.  Tearfully promising that she would wear it always, that she would try to come back soon.

Miranda had never come back.  But somehow, 40 years later, her locket had found its way into the saddle bag of a murdered girl.

Clasping the guardapelo to her pounding heart, Mollie backed up and leaned against the wall, suddenly in need of the support.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Instuctor’s comments in CAPS:  btw, she didn’t have a cow about me busting the word limit.  phew.  j

Carol,

 

Good scene–a key scene. Very dramatic. Good writing. My only problem with the writing is that you create a lot of fragments when you really don’t have. You can either create a full sentence or connect the fragment with the sentence before. Good character, good setting work, and a nice inclusion of the emotion. miki

 

Protagonist

Tiny dust particles danced in soft golden rays that filtered down from the main barn’s skylights.   Mollie peered through the haze, filling her lungs with the scents of oiled leather [and] COMMA fresh cedar shavings I LOVE THE SERIAL COMMA–YOU DON’T HAVE TO USE IT, BUT IT’S ACTUALLY PREFERRED and manure.  She felt her grandfather’s presence all around her in the dusky sunlight, and was momentarily overcome by a surge of vivid memories.  This is WAS where she’D learned about his deep kinship with horses.  Where he taught her about their care and training, how they communicate, how to build relationships with them.  Over time, she grew to understand his passion[.] MAYBE A DASH, LOWER CASE OR A SEMICOLON –THE SENTENCES ARE VERY CLOSE IN RELATIONSHIP   Then somewhere along the way, she found she had embraced it as her own.

 

She MOLLIE –REMIND US OF HER NAME shook herself out of her thoughts and moved quickly down the breezeway, reading the name cards posted on stall doors as she passed them, 22 in all.  She stopped at the last stall on the right.  She had SHE’D –CONTRACTIONS ARE GENERALLY MORE NATURAL  found the sign she was looking for.

“HORSE:  Loki.  OWNER:  Azalia Morales.”

A gray-dun mustang was standing quietly at the back of the stall.  “Hey COMMA OR DIRECT ADDRESS little boy,” Mollie said in a low voice.  “Come say hi.”

 

She opened the top half of the stall door and held her hand out to him.    The small horse took a few tentative steps toward her.  His inquiring muzzle [hopefully] investigated her fingers HOPEFULLY.  Food?

Mollie responded to his nosing with a quick caress, then withdrew her hand and closed the door.  Next  COMMA –WE OFTEN HAVE A COMMA AFTER A FIRST SINGLE WORD she headed to the tack room.  She was looking for a small endurance saddle.  She found it ONE sitting on a metal rack bolted low on the back wall.  A nylon saddle bag SADDLEBAG COMMA PURPLE WITH BLACK STRAPS AND PIPING – AZALIA’S COLORS DASH  was SAT on the floor under the rack. [ It was purple with black straps and piping – Azalia’s colors.]

 

Mollie grabbed the bag and unzipped its large main pocket.  She found a hoof pick[,] AND empty water bottle, [and] ALONG WITH other trail-handy items, then noticed a sun-faded violet bandanna tucked under them.  The bandanna was wrapped around a small drawstring pouch made of beaded deerskin.  A medicine bag.

The pouch’s drawstring pulled open easily COMMA and Mollie slipped a few fingers inside.  She felt metal.   Her finger hooked a chain and she lifted it out.  A darkly tarnished silver cylinder, 3 WE SPELL NUMBERS UNDER 10 inches long and a half-inch in diameter, dangled from the chain.   A guardapelo, a locket made in Central America, the long COMMA oval shape intended to hold strands of a loved one’s hair.  Her stomach dropped as she recognized the inscription “M A B COMMA ” engraved in simple block letters on one end of the cylinder.

 

Instantly, Mollie was overcome by another memory.  She was eight years old again.  She was watching her beloved aunt CAP `A’  Miranda coil a thin strand she had cut from Mollie’s long dark hair.   Then Miranda was placing PLACED the strand inside the guardapelo[.] AND SLIPPED  Slipping its long chain over her head.  SHE TEARFULLY PROMISED Tearfully promising that she would wear it always, that she would try to come back soon.

Miranda had never come back.  But somehow, 40 years later, her locket had found its way into the saddle bag SADDLEBAG of a murdered girl.

Clasping the guardapelo to her pounding heart, Mollie backed up and leaned against the wall, suddenly in need of the support.   GOOD

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