I’m putting up the whole first draft of chapter one of my current WIP, Slit Mouth, piece by piece. Links to the earlier paragraphs are at the bottom of the post.
I also have a question for those who have read the whole piece so far. My partner has been reading the story and has said that the first bit comes off as though the author is racist. So I’m asking if you get that impression or if it’s obvious that I’m trying to create an unlikable character?
In an effort to get a grip, Dave excused himself and went straight into his tiny kitchen to get drinks. Jesus, he was losing his shit. He stared at his trembling hands. Sarah’s betrayal had really done a number on him, hadn’t it. In his darkest moments he thought he might have bought it on himself. He’d been a pretty shit husband in those last few years, but there was no excuse for what she’d done. He may have been lazy and not around for her and the kids, preferring work and the club over family life, but he’d never cheated. Not once, though god knew he’d been tempted. Never as badly as now, with that little Japanese sweet thing out in his living room. Why was he freaked out? His stomach quivered with unease and his scalp prickled.
Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6
Dave is definitely unlikeable. I haven’t felt that he is contrived.
To me your excerpts read like you wanted to make Dave mostly unlikeable, except here where he’s clearly having second thoughts about cheating on Sarah which to me makes him a little more likeable. I always considered the way he thinks about the Japanese woman to be all Dave, not anything that reflects how the author thinks. Dave seems more racist to me than you, though honestly to me Dave is more sexist than racist.
Putting on my moderator hat, I do need to mention that you have 11 sentences here and our limit is 10. Normally we delete links from our linky list if somebody goes over 10, but you’re usually good about counting so we’ll leave you a reminder this week without deleting. Please count carefully though 🙂
Dave strikes me a rather calculating type of male. I’m reserving judgment on whether he’s a ‘good’ character or not.