Originally Posted by STelfair31
“Jarrell Hudson” said the Judge. Everyone now turning their attention to a 20 year old black man standing in at 6’4. There was mass confusion as jury members are shuffling in and out of the courtroom as well as family members. As Jarrell sat down waiting to hear the verdict, he looked back to see his little brother Demetrius sitting where he had sat during the entire trial front row first seat. No sign of his mother anywhere that was the story of their lives. He had no expression on his face which frightened him. He glanced back at the Judge. “Mr. Hudson is there anything you would like to say before the verdict is read.” Said the Judge. Jarrell stood up and said “No your honor.” The Judge motioned a jury member to the front of the courtroom. “On the charge of 1st degree murder we the jury find Jarrell Donte Hudson guilty.” This did not shock Demetrius he knew his brother was guilty after the police had came to question him. Jarrell just dropped his head as they lead him into the hallway. The thought of the guilty verdict angered Demetrius. From that day on he would not became another victim to the streets as his mother, father and brother he was destined to make it to the NBA.
Just as a warning, I am offering you constructive criticism, and though it may seem harsh I by no means am aiming to offend. I am more educated in film making and film narravitve and far from being an expert on literature, but they are very similar in structure so I'll help with what I can. If anyone can correct or criticize my advice, please do so as well.
Just a few questions first:
Is this intended to be a short story (chapters are extremely short)?
Who is your focus audience?
How old are you and what is your writing background/experience?
One quick comment: he is only supposed to be 10? Much too young for this story IMO, he uses words like n1gga (which is inappropriate in itself) and appears to be self sufficient without a guardian. Just seems very unfitting for the character's situation.
Ok, with that aside, the most obvious glaring problem is strucutre. As a a potential reader just by looking at the paragraph, I do not want to read it, it looks like a big blob of words. I know this is only a message board but you need to break this down, right now it is one paragraph with no breaks, despite the shift in character focus, speech, narrative etc. Punctuation is also very lack, missing commas
It would take way too long to disect the entire chapter so let's start with the first three senteces, so restructured correctly should look like this:
“Jarrell Hudson” said the Judge.
Everyone now turning their attention to a 20 year old black man standing in at 6’4. There was mass confusion as jury members are shuffling in and out of the courtroom as well as family members.
Notice the break after the speech, a new indented paragraph should begin after the last spoken sentence. Ex.:
"Where is Paul?" he demands through his twitching red mustache.
Knowing full well what will happen to Paul if I tell, I can only shake my head. "I haven't seen him."
"When you do, tell him to report to my tent immediately!"
And remember, the first word to every new paragraph needs to be indented, even though we are unable to do so on this message board.