A couple of days ago I posted the first draft of my rewrite of a short story I wrote a few years ago called “Come With Me”. You can catch up on that here.
As it was a short story I took it for granted and used a moderate amount of artistic license to forgo the need to explain why the main character, 15 year old Eric, would meet a girl and instantly think it was acceptable to run off with her to another world.
I made it apparent that he hated his home life (he was living with an aunt he hated as his dad had murdered his mum). He then meets a girl called Lucy who he finds out is from another world and she asks him to go with her and it’s a story of these two characters journey to find this portal.
As a short story I believe that works, it was only 4000 words long and I was happy with the way it turned out and received good feedback from both my University tutor and my readers on here.
But now there’s a problem, I’m looking at turning it into something longer which makes the beginning no longer very believable. I, as a reader, would be irritated by the fact that the main character decides to give up his life, no matter how bad it was, to go to a new world (after not batting an eyelid to the fact there was other worlds out there) with a girl he’s only just met. It just doesn’t work as the opening to a longer piece. I don’t think it does anyway, someone else could have some good points as to why it IS a good opening and if you do feel free to leave them in the comments below!
So this is my dilemma. How do I make the opening good?
I was thinking of either:-
A) Making the opening longer
B) Rewriting the opening to fit with this: ‘Eric and Lucy have known each other for a long time, Eric’s been in a foster home for a good portion of his life but then suddenly a year or two before the start of the story Lucy appeared, being brought into the family. Over that time Eric and Lucy have become best friends and during the opening of the book he discovers the secret of her new world. He trusts her with everything and after she shows him a vision of her world (like in the stories current state) he takes a while to come to terms with it but eventually does, and helps her find the portal to this new world.
The problem with making the opening as it stands longer is that I think it will be boring to stay in the real world for too long and also jarring for people unfamiliar with it to be in the real world for a while then suddenly swap to this foreign world.
Option “B” negates the need to explain why he would just run off with Lucy, having known her for years, it gets rid of the “love at first sight” feeling the current story gives off, and it allows room to expand on his acceptance of this brand new world, accessed through a magic portal.
Lucy “showing” him the new world, combined with his trust for her, will explain why he comes to terms with it so easy. Perhaps after calling her a liar and being scared of her for a little bit.
Anyway, I feel I am rambling now. Sorry for that. Just trying to get my thoughts in order.
If you have any comments on this let me, any help is much appreciated!