Monday, August 20, 2007

Story: The Promise

What follows is an analysis of a Woman's World story with suggestions/observations for people who want to sell stories to WW, peppered with some personal opinion, too. :)

Story: "The Promise" by Liza Albert from the August 7, 2007 issue.

Tagline: A 14 year old boy couldn't possibly know what was in his heart, Kate thought. Or could he?

In a nutshell: Charlie realizes Kate is his soulmate when he's fourteen. He woos her slowly but surely.

This story occurs over the course of several years, unusual for a WW story, but it worked for me. The way Albert paces it and the mundane events in the courtship make this story very believable. This is a quality that I'm coming to realize might just be one of the keys to getting published by WW. What happens in one of their romances should be something that could actually happen to one of their readers in the course of their ordinary lives. I mean, the guy asks her to dinner and the movies! How much more ordinary does it get?

Albert also manages to insert a climax in which the romance is actually in doubt. After a week of being avoided, poor Charlie thinks he's been fighting a losing battle. Fortunately, Kate comes to her senses and then we get a true Happily Ever After! Kate and Charlie get married. Yay!

Best Part: I liked Albert's snappy, lifelike dialogue:

"Movie Saturday?" he said.
"Gee, Charlie, I'd love to but--"
"Seven o'clock okay?"

In My Humble Opinion: It was strange how she started out in present tense, switched to past tense, and then moved back into present. I wouldn't recommend this if you're new to writing. It's tricky to do.

Grade: B+



Blogger Anna J. Evans said...

Damn WW...they are my uncrackable nut. Maybe it's the 'believablity' thing. Even my real life courtships have been fairly strange so perhaps I don't know what 'believable' is.

But thanks for the analysis!


Anna J. Evans

1:25 PM  
Blogger Kate Willoughby said...

Anna, think ordinary, everyday occurences. :) And read their stories every week. That's the best way to get a feel for what they want.

5:23 PM  
Anonymous pat said...

Stange, Kate, until you pointed it out, I didn't notice the change in tenses. But it is different--almost like a flash back in reverse that she really didn't need.
I'm going to think on that long time frame too. I guess if they like the story you can do that. I seem to remember a couple of others similar, just not a long a time.

9:50 AM  
Blogger Kate Willoughby said...

Pat, it all boils down to writing what they like, which can be an elusive concept, considering what they publish.

10:58 AM  

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