Novel project

Sybill

Jedi
Here is one of my novel projects, out of the many. I kind of stuck with this one. Not sure whether the character development is good or not. It would be greatly appreciated if you could leave some feedback. Thanx.
( Don't mind the grammar pls, it is only a draft. )

Oh, and pls, writers ( even amateur writers ) have a rather delicate disposition towards their creation, be gentle. :D

A treat



She knew she was about to have a treat. Of course, he was not everybody’s cup of tea. He was too much for most of his partners. He hasn’t mastered well the path of balance. He was a bit too much of everything, just slightly out of the ordinary. Obviously, he wasn’t a deviant that was impossible considering the structure of their society. Individuals displaying deviant behavior have been dealt with loving guidance in the right direction in early childhood. He was different though. Bit louder, a bit funnier, more emotional, a better cook, and a better lover.

She remembered the nice meals he cooked and the rather passionate nights they had, but then she remembered those strange behavioral patterns he displayed before; jealousy, sarcasm, and narcissism. Obviously, that was the reason why no one wanted to settle with him so far. He was circulating quite a while amongst the indecisive. She wasn’t one of them. She could settle a long time ago but she wasn’t ready.

She was on a trip when she received the invitation from the system. She de registered herself a couple of weeks before, after a long break from partners. She didn’t request him, or anybody else, in particular, that would be quite unusual. She enjoyed her solitude for long months before she decided to go back to social interactions. Nothing was out of the ordinary about this, no one felt pressurized into undesirable decisions or connections.

She was walking up the stairs when she heard his voice:

-I hope you are hungry! I have been cooking for an hour!

Yes. Definitely him. No one else would cook dinner before actually asking his partner or as a matter of fact no one really cooking at home anymore. It did smell nice. She was looking up just to see him leaning out from the second floor. He hasn’t changed a lot; blonde messy hair, a gleaming smile, and an enthusiastic face.

-I’m positive that I remember your favorite dessert too.

He stated casually as she approached the second floor. She smiled and greeted him:

-It’s nice to see you again.

She didn’t say anything further. She didn’t need to, he was babbling away as they got indoors:

- I see you redesign your apartment. I like it. Perhaps more vivid colors would be nice but this is only my opinion. I don’t have permanent residency now. I can’t decide where to live. I’m glad that you accepted to have me here.

He smiled again. She felt his look wandering on her body. No comment was needed. If she was agreed to partner with him for a period, physical relation was agreed also upon.

The diner was nice and the night rather enjoyable. They spent the next couple of weeks together. She was started to wandering if she should settle with him. Her previous experiences related to him started to fade and she felt content. It was the week before their proposed decision related to each other took place when he made a rather strange remark about one of her colleagues. He corrected himself very quickly and laughed. She was looking at him puzzled but she wasn’t alarmed. The first incident took place not long after this. She decided to dine out with her friends and she notified him in time that she not coming home for dinner. After dinner, they all decided to go to her apartment and have a nice chat. He was waiting for her at the door with a sad face.

-I see that I’m not able to satisfy your needs anymore. I could cook you a better dinner than any diner.

When he saw her friends he came aggravated and excused himself for the rest of the night. His behavior was unusual but not strange so no one took particular notice. The particularity arrived when he asked her to tell him if she want to choose him or not. This was unusual because everybody had the liberty to choose without pressure or questions from the other party. She wasn’t happy about this. She felt uncomfortable and an alarming feeling started to emerge from her heart. She expressed her disapproval of his behavior. The next thing really pushed her out of her comfort zone; he started to cry.

-You don’t know how it feels to constantly please somebody while the other person just takes your affection and enjoys what you give. I don’t want to be in the system anymore. I want to settle. I thought we have an understanding. You make me feel so insecure. Why you don’t choose me? Am I not giving you my best? Am I lacking something? You told me several times that my cooking is outstanding and I know that you enjoy our private times tremendously. You know I’m tired. Every time I do my best and I receive back next to nothing. I know I’m better than anybody out there.

He looked desperate. She looked at him and didn’t say a word. He looked nervous now. He knew he had gone too far.

-Ok, so this is it. I’m sorry. I thought... never mind. I guess... I go now.

He left the house quietly. She was looking at the door and searched her feelings. She knew she didn’t do anything wrong. His assumptions were totally inappropriate. She didn’t have any obligations to explain herself to him. This is how the system worked flawlessly. And yet. She felt sorry for him. She knew he violated the unwritten social norms but can't help to feel for him. First time in her life she felt guilty. After all, he did go out of his way to give her the best he could. Perhaps she could give him a chance, but somehow this felt wrong. Something was not right here. She was searching her heart; would she miss him tonight, or tomorrow? She needed to rearrange her taught. She called for transportation and a couple of hours later left the planet. After spending a couple of months solitary she came back to her usual herself, understanding in a non-judgemental way that he was not the right partner for her.

She was the same content herself when the transport dropped her off in front of her house. She walked up to her apartment and opened the door. Everything was warm and inviting as before. She ordered dinner for herself and made some social engagements for the future. She saw the notification from the system. Probably a couple of requests arrived while she was away. She didn’t feel to check them just now. She opened the wardrobe to get her bathrobe out when she saw his shirt. It was not supposed to be there, yet it was there. She picked it up mechanically. She knew it was absolutely impossible that the arrangers would leave anything behind. She held it to her face and took a deep breath inhaling the smell of the fabric. At that point, everything was faded away. Those months of solitary and the equilibrium she felt. It was all gone. She was clutching his shirt, breathing in his smell. She felt happy. She felt different and she felt the same. She knew she can’t go back ever the way she was before. He became part of her. A secret part, a deviant part, something unusual. After all, that’s what she wanted, something different, a treat.
 

brandon

Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
Cool Sybill! I probably don't have any really useful feedback, not very good at analysing writing.. You said it's a draft - is it just an outline of what will be a whole novel? Or a draft of one chapter? Or a short story?

I enjoyed it.. Really liked how you hinted early on that it was taking place in a futuristic/sci-fi type setting (with mentions of how their society works etc), but didn't make that explicit until saying she left the planet. You evoked the feeling of the wider world outside the story itself very nicely, without the need to explain things.. (calling for transportation to a couple months voluntary "solitary" off-planet, after a system-arranged relationship doesn't work out.. and later coming back to your(?) house, which has been set back up for you by "the arrangers".... oh god, I can visualise what this whole society is like, from these details...)

As for character development, I don't really know.. I wanted to know a bit more about them.. Felt like the bits which talk about the guy's peculiarities could be fleshed out a bit more. ie, instead of just mentioning that he displayed certain traits, give more examples of how he displayed them, by writing about more incidents.. this bit, I mean:

She remembered the nice meals he cooked and the rather passionate nights they had, but then she remembered those strange behavioral patterns he displayed before; jealousy, sarcasm, and narcissism.

It could be nice if, instead of just saying that she remembered these things, show her reminiscing, "go into" the memories slightly, so we can see the details. (If this was just a story outline, disregard)

..Or maybe not! I'm not a writer at all. It's something I really want to do "one day" but haven't even started trying to try yet. :) Anyway nice work!
 

Sybill

Jedi
Cool Sybill! I probably don't have any really useful feedback, not very good at analysing writing.. You said it's a draft - is it just an outline of what will be a whole novel? Or a draft of one chapter? Or a short story?

I enjoyed it.. Really liked how you hinted early on that it was taking place in a futuristic/sci-fi type setting (with mentions of how their society works etc), but didn't make that explicit until saying she left the planet. You evoked the feeling of the wider world outside the story itself very nicely, without the need to explain things.. (calling for transportation to a couple months voluntary "solitary" off-planet, after a system-arranged relationship doesn't work out.. and later coming back to your(?) house, which has been set back up for you by "the arrangers".... oh god, I can visualise what this whole society is like, from these details...)

As for character development, I don't really know.. I wanted to know a bit more about them.. Felt like the bits which talk about the guy's peculiarities could be fleshed out a bit more. ie, instead of just mentioning that he displayed certain traits, give more examples of how he displayed them, by writing about more incidents.. this bit, I mean:



It could be nice if, instead of just saying that she remembered these things, show her reminiscing, "go into" the memories slightly, so we can see the details. (If this was just a story outline, disregard)

..Or maybe not! I'm not a writer at all. It's something I really want to do "one day" but haven't even started trying to try yet. :) Anyway nice work!

Thank you for the feedback Brandon. I started this bit about two years ago, then I got distracted with study and other story ideas. It started out as a short story, but I can see the potential for a novel.
It is a draft in a sense, that it is subject to change if the storyline of the novel requires it.
I think you are right, I need to work on the guy a bit more. The reason why I did not go into any detail, bc I wanted to show later, that he did display these traits again, and she was balanced enough to not dwell on past details.
Let's see if I can write a bit more.
 
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