Six Sentence Sunday – 2/12/12

Today is #sixsunday where writers share six sentences from their work. I’ll share a snippet from my time-travel romance WIP tentatively titled MUST LOVE BREECHES.

Here’s my new pitch/logline: When a thoroughly modern girl finds herself stranded in 1834 London, she must find a way home while navigating the pitfalls of London society, resisting her attraction to a hunky lord, and ultimately having to decide when her true home lies.  (You can see the other entries here.)

Okay, a couple of week’s back I shared the new first opening lines and below is taking the last line in that and reworking it to show their obsession with guys in breeches, not tell. I wanted to get y’all’s opinion. I had one critiquer tell me they thought this was a bit gross/crass, but I wasn’t sure if it was just her sensibilities, or if it really was just, well, gross. Setup: they are at a reenactment ball set in 1834.

At least her co-worker Anna was with her in this. Like Isabelle’s, her dress was circa 1834. “Hmmm, how about him?” Isabelle asked, eyeing the guy walking past in tight-fitting, buff-colored breeches.

Anna sucked on her olive and plopped the stir stick back into her cocktail. “Oh, yes, a breech-ripper for sure.”

Since this is the third and fourth paragraph, I don’t want to get her characterization wrong. To see snippets from others who are participating or to sign up yourself, visit here. Other time-travel SSS writers: Gayle Ramage

Thank you to everyone who comes by and comments each week! Have a great Sunday!

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62 Responses to Six Sentence Sunday – 2/12/12

  1. Gayle Ramage February 12, 2012 at 8:07 am #

    lol, “breech-ripper” – love it!

  2. Heather Thurmeier February 12, 2012 at 8:07 am #

    Cute snippet! And an interesting concept too!

  3. Stephanie February 12, 2012 at 8:14 am #

    Hah! Depends on who (or what) is going the breech-ripping! Definitely not gross, but it seems purposely crass–and funny. It’s a nice turn on the “button-popping” convention.

    • angela quarles February 12, 2012 at 8:37 am #

      Yeah, was trying to have it be the alternative to the bodice-ripper concept?

  4. Lisa Fox February 12, 2012 at 8:18 am #

    Lol! Very fun.

  5. Zee Monodee February 12, 2012 at 8:42 am #

    Imo, not gross. I rather liked the “pun” turn on this one – very original :)

  6. Paula Martin February 12, 2012 at 9:18 am #

    I like the breech-ripper turn of phrase!

  7. Kate Warren February 12, 2012 at 9:23 am #

    Cracked me up.

  8. julie February 12, 2012 at 9:35 am #

    Must say I loved it as well!

  9. Julia Phillips Smith February 12, 2012 at 9:42 am #

    Loved the flipside of bodice-ripper.

  10. Carly Fall February 12, 2012 at 9:50 am #

    Absolutely hysterical! Definitely not offensive at all. Remember, you can’t please everyone all the time! 😉

  11. Monica T. Rodriguez February 12, 2012 at 10:05 am #

    Well, I’m glad I made it back for this one! 😀 I’m in agreement with the others here. It’s a clever phrase. And you can’t expext to please everyone. My only concern would be how soon this comment comes in the story. It definitely sets a tone. If that tone doesn’t match the rest of the book, you might want to push the phrase to later. Also, there is a chance you might put off some – some – readers who might read the tone of that line as the overall tone of the book. This is the opening paragraph of the book & I don’t believe you can be too picky or careful about wording, tone, etc. Just something to think about!

    • angela quarles February 12, 2012 at 10:10 am #

      In fairness to the one critter, this used to be the opening line. I moved it down to the 3rd paragraph and hopefully her geeky awkwardness preceding this will counteract it, put it in context. It’s supposed to be like she’s going along with Anna in this moment, and it’s Anna that says the line? She’s wanting to fit in…

    • angela quarles February 12, 2012 at 10:35 am #

      This made me realize i should have a small reaction beat right after this to help put Isabelle in context with the statement…

      • Karysa Faire February 12, 2012 at 11:49 am #

        Great idea, Angela. That’s what I was going to suggest. Plus, for those readers (and maybe for the protagonist?) who don’t get the reference right away (breech ripper = bodice ripper). When I read it, my mind was trying to work out if 1) he was so well endowed that he was about to rip out of his breeches or 2) that he looked so delicious that Anna wanted to rip off the breeches. The rest of the snippet is very well done in showing rather than telling-puts the reader right there in the moment.

        • angela quarles February 12, 2012 at 11:58 am #

          good idea! I’ll have her internally comment that they’d just been talking about their fave bodice-ripper romances… 😉

      • Monica T. Rodriguez February 12, 2012 at 11:06 pm #

        I have to admit I didn’t quite get the connection to ‘bodice ripper’ until I read the comments. I was thinking you meant it more along the lines of Karysa’s impression #1. 😮 If it was clearly connected to ‘bodice ripper’ I think you wouldn’t have any concerns (I have a feeling that confusion was the source of the ‘gross’ comment).

  12. sarahballance February 12, 2012 at 10:10 am #

    Breech ripper! LMAO!

  13. Joanne Stewart February 12, 2012 at 10:46 am #

    I don’t think it’s crass either. I think that it’s Anna that says it works. I personally don’t consider this setting a tone, either. Rather what I see is the relationship between them and Anna’s personality jumping out at me. I think this illustrates Anna’s character. It makes her sound like a firecracker. She sounds like the kind of person who speaks her mind. Sounds to me like a very fun secondary.

    Oh, and I agree. You can’t please everybody.

  14. J.M. Blackman February 12, 2012 at 11:01 am #

    I agree that it’s not crass/gross at all. I think it’s a great way to show what your character is thinking/feeling while giving an insight to her personality and sense of humor. It’s a great detail. Go with what works best for you and the story–some people will never be happy.

  15. Sarah W February 12, 2012 at 11:19 am #

    I think that’s the perfect counterpoint to “bodice-ripper”—and also shows that the main character is a woman with modern sexual sensibilities. And it’s funny, too. 😀

  16. Kate Meader February 12, 2012 at 11:27 am #

    I’m totally on board with this. There’s a great tradition of putting the bawdy comments in the mouth of the wisecracking best friend and this is what I’m seeing here (the friend says it, not the heroine, right?). So you have the friend as the extension of the heroine’s thoughts to an extent, saying what the heroine can only think or is not yet ready to say aloud. Great ending line.

  17. Cindy Carroll February 12, 2012 at 11:32 am #

    Loved the breech ripper line! Great 6!

  18. Cara Bristol February 12, 2012 at 11:52 am #

    I can’t imagine why it would considered gross or crass. Your character is still a modern gal. If this was a historical and not a time travel, the comment would be out of context and not appropriate, but I think it fits fine here.

  19. sassyspeaks February 12, 2012 at 12:00 pm #

    As someone told me a while ago, you can’t worry about – ah forget the actual wording – can’t worry about hurting your readers sensibilities if what you write works in the general scheme of the story. In this case your line works. For all the positive reasons given above I love time travel and this one sounds like a good read

  20. Skye Warren February 12, 2012 at 12:13 pm #

    Breech-ripper – very cute :)

  21. utecarbone February 12, 2012 at 12:18 pm #

    I love breech ripper, Angela. I don’t think it crass at all, to me it shows she has a good sense of humor. Made me chuckle, at any rate.:)

  22. D'Ann Linscott-Dunham February 12, 2012 at 12:31 pm #

    Breech-ripper! LOL! Love it.

  23. K.E. Saxon February 12, 2012 at 12:47 pm #

    LOL! LOVE it! “breech-ripper” Excellent. I love how the girls are ‘checking out’ the guys. Such a great turn around of the normal guy-checks-girl-out. Also love how you “show” this with the “sucked on her olive and plopped the stir stick back into her cocktail” Classic. I can just see them standing there sizing guys up while they’re drinking their cocktails. This is great, and not at all crass or vulgar IMHO. Great six!

  24. Monica Enderle Pierce February 12, 2012 at 12:52 pm #

    I agree, clever not crass. There’s just a little bit of immaturity in the humor, which fits with the ‘geeky awkwardness’ you’re going for.

  25. sueannbowlingauthor February 12, 2012 at 1:07 pm #

    Considering that decorated codpieces were once the height of fashion, I think it’s reasonable. And I like breeches-ripper. (from a 70+ year old.)

  26. Rachel Morgan February 12, 2012 at 1:14 pm #

    I don’t think it’s gross. I found it quite humorous actually!

  27. S. J. Maylee February 12, 2012 at 1:19 pm #

    what a great 6!! I loved it all, the sucking the plopping and especially the breech-ripper
    please give us more next week

  28. Nick Kelly February 12, 2012 at 1:30 pm #

    I concur with the crowd. I found it funny.

  29. Cera duBois February 12, 2012 at 1:54 pm #

    LOVED it, Angela… LOL “breech-ripper”

  30. DeAnna Felthauser February 12, 2012 at 2:05 pm #

    It cracked me up Angela! I love it…LOL 😀

  31. Sandra Sookoo February 12, 2012 at 2:12 pm #

    lol loved it!

  32. Karla February 12, 2012 at 2:42 pm #

    lol. I think you’ve got a keeper in “breech-ripper”. :)

  33. michelle February 12, 2012 at 3:20 pm #

    I liked it. I didn’t find it gross – it was a little funny. I chuckled when I it. So if that’s what you were going for…good job.

    Michelle :)

  34. J.C. Martin February 12, 2012 at 3:42 pm #

    I for one have no qualms with breech-rippers. :)

  35. Cate Masters February 12, 2012 at 3:47 pm #

    Breech-ripper – too funny! Fun time travel premise. Looking forward to more.

  36. Ryan February 12, 2012 at 4:33 pm #

    I think it’s a fun scene, Angela. Not gross at all. Her “geeky awkwardness” comes through and conveys the tone you want to set, so it works! Great six!

  37. A.K. Morgen February 12, 2012 at 4:58 pm #

    It’s a fun turn of phrase, not at all gross, in my opinion.

  38. Silver James February 12, 2012 at 5:08 pm #

    Awesome way to turn it around!

  39. Gemma Parkes February 12, 2012 at 5:09 pm #

    Ha! These two are fun!

  40. jennajaxon February 12, 2012 at 5:28 pm #

    Loved the breeches-ripper reference. Sounds like a fun set-up.

  41. Ranae Rose February 12, 2012 at 5:35 pm #

    Breech-ripper. LOL I like the title for this one, too.

  42. Jennifer Lowery~Author February 12, 2012 at 6:20 pm #

    Breech-ripper instead of bodice-ripper—love it!!! Great six!

  43. Steven Montano February 12, 2012 at 7:17 pm #

    I;m adding “breech-ripper” to my vocabulary. ;D

  44. Jessica Knauss February 12, 2012 at 7:17 pm #

    Hilarious! Add a reaction and it’s perfect.

  45. Sadie Hart February 12, 2012 at 7:33 pm #

    For me it worked well, but I’m not sure how many non-romance readers will get the bodice-ripper to breech-ripper train of thought without a bit of lead up? Just food for thought. Still, cracked me up. They at least know how to enjoy a party, and I love the tie in with the title.

    • Monica T. Rodriguez February 12, 2012 at 11:15 pm #

      You’re absolutely right, Sadie. That’s what happened to me, a “non-romance reader.” I took the comment to mean he was busting out of his breeches! Quite a different take. Now that I’ve gotten the right idea, I think it’s rather clever. And as someone else mentioned, it’s the sidekick who makes the comment, which does make a difference.

  46. Jessica Subject February 12, 2012 at 8:05 pm #

    A very cute six! :)

  47. Jean Marie Ward February 12, 2012 at 8:32 pm #

    Great closing line! I’m going to have to remember “breech ripper”. Super fun Six. And no, I didn’t find the olive sucking gross. Double dipping your chips, now *that’s* gross. 😉

  48. ED Martin February 12, 2012 at 8:54 pm #

    Another reader loving the term “breech ripper.” :)

  49. Melynda Price February 12, 2012 at 9:10 pm #

    Love the “breech-ripper”, I wouldn’t change a thing :)

  50. Kathleen Grieve February 13, 2012 at 2:57 am #

    Loved that last line!

  51. Ruthie February 13, 2012 at 3:05 am #

    Like it with the addition of an internal reference to bodice-rippers, just to make it clear what the pun is about. Fun!

  52. Heather Boyd February 13, 2012 at 4:36 am #

    I love the term breech-ripper!! LOL Great six.

  53. Lynne Murray February 13, 2012 at 6:03 pm #

    Once more into the breeches, dear friends! This may be a Rorschach kind of a phrase, I got the bodice-ripper reference, but the first thing I thought of was breech births rather than ripping the breeches off the dude. You know where babies are born feet first rather than head first, then there was a kind of X-rated thought that would require a lot of lubricant ewww, not going there. I’ve learned the hard way that over-explain things like this avoids some readers stopping and saying “What?” So rather than using a short hand not every reader would understand. Personally after a line about bodice-ripping romances, I’d put in some dialogue that explained the phrase as in–“That guy can rip off my bodice any time and I’d rip off those breeches to return the favor!” kind of thing. Just being annoyingly nit picky as is my wont!

  54. J.A. Beard February 14, 2012 at 11:54 pm #

    Breech-ripper. Great line. :)

  55. Scott Bury / ScottTheWriter February 27, 2012 at 11:43 am #

    Well done. I don’t think it’s crass. It’s the way people talk, isn’t it? And that’s the goal – to write dialoge that the reader can believe people actually say.

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