Six Sentence Sunday – 4/15/12

Today is #sixsunday where writers share six sentences from their work. I’ll share a snippet from my time-travel romance WIP titled MUST LOVE BREECHES, which is now out in query land! (You can see the other entries here.) Yesterday, it finaled in the Georgian/Regency/Victorian category for the RWA Hearts Through History chapter contest!

I am currently looking for Beta readers. If you’re interested, let me know. I’ve stopped querying to see how this batch takes and so this new round of Beta reading will be to help me tighten up what problems will have come to light.

Here’s my 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. 

In Chapter Three, Isabelle is trying to show Ada Byron that she’s from the future. After walking her through a lot of her behavior that might have been strange to Ada, she pulls out her final proof, her phone. She knows Ada is fascinated by math, and so in this snippet, she’s showing her the calculator. I’ve had a lot of different Beta readers and Critique Partners read this scene, and not ONE picked up on the little pop culture reference, so I’m putting it out there now (hint, it’s in the numbers):

“See these little numbers here? I’m going to add forty-eight plus fifteen hundred and sixteen.” Isabelle punched buttons as she talked. “And the screen here shows the answer.” Isabelle peeked at Ada to gauge her reaction. Ada blanched again and her hand trembled as she held it in front of her mouth.

As always I welcome constructive feedback. Thank you! And don’t feel bad if you don’t get the reference. I didn’t want it to be obvious since it’s not something Isabelle would know of, it’s more of a wink-wink to the reader from me… UPDATE: If you’re wanting to know, some commenters have figured it out and left some veiled hints, just don’t get lost while reading them.

To see snippets from others who are participating or to sign up yourself, visit here.

Thank you to everyone who comes by and comments each week! 

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85 Responses to Six Sentence Sunday – 4/15/12

  1. Kate April 15, 2012 at 7:19 am #

    Ok. I still don’t get the pop culture reference. Looked at each number separately, and added them together, and I’m drawing a blank. Honestly, when I read it I was too focused on Lord Hot Stuff to notice any numbers. :)

  2. Jessica Subject April 15, 2012 at 7:30 am #

    Her reaction is great! And congrats on finaling! :)

  3. bflyzone April 15, 2012 at 8:06 am #

    I would love to read this. Regency is right up my ally. I wrote a short story like this once. It was called “An Indian, A Vampire, and Regency England.” I know, terrible title, but I never really went anywhere with it…and it was a musical. I’d like to see what you did with the story. I am also preparing 6sentences so keep your eyes peeled.

    • bflyzone April 15, 2012 at 8:24 am #

      Okay, I thought this first post didn’t get published. Sorry for the redundancy. You don’t even have to approve this one.

  4. bflyzone April 15, 2012 at 8:13 am #

    I would love to read this novel. Regency is right up my ally. I wrote a short story like this a whlile back but I never did anything with it. It was called “An Indian, A Vampire, and Regency England.” I know, terrible title, but…gasp…it was a musical! Keep your eyes peeled for my six sentences. Thanks for the post.

  5. indylinda April 15, 2012 at 8:16 am #

    Okay, I’m also clueless about the pop culture reference, although digging around your blog, I suspect it’s a Firefly thing perhaps? I don’t know for sure, though, because, I’ve never watched the show. (Ducking flying tomatoes here.)
    Anyway, it’s a great snippet! Looking forward to reading more.

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 8:28 am #

      Nope, not Firefly :) But I was actually glad none of my CPs and Betas caught it because it is not a reference that Isabelle would have known, so it’s more of a wink to anyone who happens to catch it.

  6. Corinne Davies April 15, 2012 at 8:39 am #

    Great reaction! I really enjoy your sixes :)
    I have an idea about the pop culture reference, but I’m usually LOST when it comes to these things.

  7. bflyzone April 15, 2012 at 8:42 am #

    Here are my 6 sentences. This story is called “The Claiming.” It is about a dying race of alien men who ask the US government for 5,000 women so that they may repopulate their species in exchange for advanced technology. The US government agrees to send 125 girls as a first wave. This scene takes place just after the first 125 were made aware that they were now new members of the Mabon race.

    “Are you going to put it on,” he asked, his voice low. Claire slapped the shiny new bracelet flat on the table and raised her head.
    “Are you going to make me?” she asked keeping her voice calm.
    “Of course not. It’s a gift.”
    Claire stood carefully, her eyes were dark as she tossed the bracelet back at him. Error dove for it struggling to keep it from hitting the ground.
    “You can keep your shackles…Doctor. I refuse to live in your goulog peacefully. Unless someone starts answering all my questions, it’s going to be a very rough existence for all of us.”

    Okay, I did a few more than 6 sentences, but I’m sure you can handle it.

    • bflyzone April 15, 2012 at 8:44 am #

      The Doctor’s name is spelled Erron. My phone turned it into Error which is in fact an error.

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 8:47 am #

      Great 6, I don’t think I’d take to being one of these 125 placidly either… And LOL on the error– autocorrect can be infuriating sometimes!

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing!

  8. Joanne Stewart April 15, 2012 at 8:54 am #

    Okay, I didn’t get the pop culture reference either. Went a bit over my head, but love Ada’s reaction. I can imagine the shock of seeing such a thing back then. Great six.

  9. Stephanie April 15, 2012 at 8:58 am #

    You’re asking WRITERS about NUMBERS?! Sorry, I don’t get it either. :( But I do love this six–it does a great job of demonstrating the things we take for granted. Even our parents had sliding calculators–I can ony imagine the shock of someone from several generations before that.

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 9:04 am #

      Thanks! Especially to Ada, who loves numbers and math and is fascinated by Babbage’s huge calculating machine

  10. Tonya Burrows April 15, 2012 at 9:21 am #

    Oh, hey, I get it! And I’ve never even seen the show. Cool six! I love time travel stories.

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 9:25 am #

      Yeah, that was the one thing I knew of before I ever saw the show myself :)

  11. A.S. Fenichel April 15, 2012 at 9:33 am #

    Very interesting six. What happens when her battery goes dead. LOL! Nice job!

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 9:37 am #

      She no longer has easy proof :) Later it takes a lot more convincing when she has to tell Lord M :)

  12. Lorraine Paton April 15, 2012 at 9:39 am #

    I didn’t get the pop culture reference either… but how fascinating for Ada to see something from the future. Congratulations on finaling! :)

  13. Carly Fall April 15, 2012 at 9:42 am #

    Didn’t get it, Angela, but now I’m dying to know. Great six though. I love the snippets each week on this book :)

  14. Ursula Grey April 15, 2012 at 9:59 am #

    Not sure about the pop culture reference either, but love your six…as always. Great work, Angela:-)

  15. Kate Meader (@KittyMeader) April 15, 2012 at 9:59 am #

    Nice six, Angela. And I get the numbers reference, too, though it took me a while (First off, I thought it was something to do with Shakespeare’s birth dates but that was all wrong!)

    • Kate Meader (@KittyMeader) April 15, 2012 at 11:06 am #

      I could add something about how you’ve HATCHed a nice six here or I’m LOST in your yummy six, but that would be pushing it, I think!

  16. Skye Warren April 15, 2012 at 9:59 am #

    Ahh, I don’t get it either! But then I don’t watch a lot of movies or TV or video games…. so that’s probably why! I do that, too, though – put in a lot of little reference to shows or books or music. No one ever gets it unless I point it out! Oh well, it’s still fun to write!

  17. Mae Clair April 15, 2012 at 10:06 am #

    Well, I don’t get the reference either but, as always, your six has great flow. It isn’t easy to convincingly pull off time-travel. Great job and huge congrats on finaling. That’s fantastic news!

  18. Candice Bundy April 15, 2012 at 10:29 am #

    I don’t get the pop culture reference either, but I don’t watch much TV. :( Still, this is a great way for her to show she’s from another time! Well done! :)

  19. K.E. Saxon April 15, 2012 at 10:32 am #

    I have no idea what the numbers are referencing in pop culture. The only pop culture numbers thing I can think of if Rubik’s cube (and that’s 30 years ago now, so not so “POP”). Love Ada’s reaction to the technology. Great six!! And Congrats on finaling in the contest!!

  20. Zee Monodee April 15, 2012 at 10:35 am #

    Not sure I’ve got the wink too, me and numbers = zero, lol. But love the idea of the phone – they used that on an episode of Supernatural to demonstrate that they came from the future, and the guy from the past got the date from the phone, and he mailed a parcel to be delivered to one of the boys on that specific date, even if it was 2 centuries later *okay, sorry, Supernatural fangirl geek moment here*

    Love your six. And if you’re not hard-pressing for feedback right away, I’d gladly take a look at your ms. Let me know :) xoxo

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 10:54 am #

      oooh, I’ll have to check out that show! And thanks for the offer, will email you shortly :)

  21. Sue April 15, 2012 at 10:52 am #

    I don’t get it either. But then I put all sorts of jokes into my writing that are just for me. And I’m older than the rest of you so I may not be in on the same pop culture. Wouldn’t a calculator scare someone in that time period?? Also I’m looking for readers for Nineteen Hundered. It’s a short story but trying to get as many as I can

  22. Jalisa Blackman (@J_M_Blackman) April 15, 2012 at 10:53 am #

    The phone is definitely the best way to prove you’re from a different time. I mean, especially if she had a camera? She’d be burned at the stake, or something—wrong time period, I know. :) But a great six, nonetheless! So glad I get this in entirety instead of chunks now!

  23. Cara Bristol April 15, 2012 at 11:06 am #

    I would think that a phone/calculator would certainly astound someone from the past. I also am clueless about the pop culture reference.

  24. Melinda Dozier April 15, 2012 at 11:21 am #

    Excellent reaction to modern technology. 😉 Congrats on finaling in the contest!

  25. Monica Enderle Pierce April 15, 2012 at 11:26 am #

    Nope, I didn’t get it either. But I don’t watch much TV, so that’s probably no surprise. I do hope Ada doesn’t faint. I seriously concerned about her right now. LOL!

  26. L.J. Kentowski April 15, 2012 at 11:33 am #

    Love the reaction here! I didn’t get the reference either, but after reading some comments I do now. Then of course I went back and read it again and had that AHA moment LOL. Great six!

  27. Silver James April 15, 2012 at 11:37 am #

    I’ve picked up hints about the reference but still lost. (No pun intended 😉 ) I enjoyed the six but I’m curious as to how her battery has lasted? I’m not sure how long she’s been there, and there’s surely no way to recharge her phone. Sorry, left brain is overriding right brain today–as I watch my phone recharge… 😀

    Other than that, I really like her ingenuity in proving her point. I wish I had time to beta read. I’d volunteer if I did.

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 11:40 am #

      It’s only the next morning so far, so it’s possible it’s still alive, but not for long…

  28. Melynda Price April 15, 2012 at 11:46 am #

    Ada’s reaction here is priceless :) Great six!

  29. Jasmine Aherne April 15, 2012 at 11:48 am #

    Best of luck in query land; I have really enjoyed all your snippets.

  30. Claire Gillian April 15, 2012 at 11:49 am #

    Ha! The Lost digits! I wouldn’t have expected them though had you not hinted of their presence, especially 1516 vs. 15 and then 16.

    • Claire Gillian April 15, 2012 at 11:51 am #

      I LOVE easter eggs in stories by the way. Good for you! I put a few in my own that I know no one will get. I did have to fight with the editor for a few to stay, making them as seamless in the story as possible.

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 12:00 pm #

      yeah I did that on purpose to hide it some more because I didn’t want it to be obvious :)

  31. sueannbowlingauthor April 15, 2012 at 11:57 am #

    Guess she’s a little early for Farraday–he might have been able to figure a way of recharging her phone–but boy, would that change history. (The battery’s dc, after all.) The pop reference? Nada.

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 12:00 pm #

      actually she’s not too early for him– I toyed with the idea of having someone help rig up some batteries, but then I couldn’t think of a compelling reason why she needed it recharged…

  32. Sarah W April 15, 2012 at 12:23 pm #

    Is she lost in time or just stranded? :)

    I’d love to beta this, If your dance card isn’t full. And congratulations on finaling!

  33. Wildcat's Wife April 15, 2012 at 12:26 pm #

    I hate to add and certainly don’t want to add while reading a novel. LOL. (kidding) Is this imperative to the plot? If not, toss it. Can you use another reference? Simple is better. I’m excited about this woman time traveling to London and meets a Lord. I could get lost in that story!

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 12:31 pm #

      It’s not integral at all, but hopefully I made it obscure enough that a reader wouldn’t even pick up on it. It’s just an Easter Egg. I’ve had lots of CPs and none even noticed it, so I think I’m safe. Everyone just assumes it’s a random number. BTW, did you mean to use the word LOST in that last sentence? 😉

      • Wildcat's Wife April 15, 2012 at 12:45 pm #

        yes. “lost” — “escapism” 😉

        • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 12:50 pm #

          actually I meant did you know you were answering the pop culture quiz? :)

          • Wildcat's Wife April 15, 2012 at 1:01 pm #

            Quiz? Good God! It’s 1 pm on Sunday — much too early for a quiz, m’lady.

          • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 1:01 pm #


  34. Paula Martin April 15, 2012 at 12:28 pm #

    No idea about the reference, but loved Ada’s reaction to the phone.

  35. Calisa Rhose April 15, 2012 at 12:58 pm #

    Yeah, me and numbers… I’ll leave it at that. Pop culture? Do you mean the pop group Culture Club. Boy George? Not my niche either. Sorry. Nice six though. I think it would be fun to ‘show’ someone I’m from the future with some fantastic gizmo! Ada’s reaction is very believable. Congrats on finaling. Thanks for visiting my six today. :)

  36. michelle April 15, 2012 at 1:07 pm #

    I love this scene and her reaction. Very clever reference, too. 😉

    Michelle :)

  37. veronicascott April 15, 2012 at 1:25 pm #

    I so love this story and all the aspects! Terrific six, as always…

  38. ashlynmacnamara April 15, 2012 at 1:33 pm #

    I didn’t pick up on the reference until I saw the comments, but I’m not much of a TV fan. I’ve heard of Lost, but I’d never have gotten the numbers associated with it. Congratulations again on your final. I’m looking forward to reading more of this on the crit loop.

  39. Jo-Ann Carson April 15, 2012 at 1:35 pm #

    I don’t get the reference, but I looove the writing.

  40. Karyn Good April 15, 2012 at 1:50 pm #

    Didn’t pick up on the clue but am enjoying your story! Ada is appropriately overwhelmed as Isabelle is gently trying to convince her. Great six!

  41. Sandra Sookoo April 15, 2012 at 1:55 pm #

    Liked that she’s trying to show off a calculator :-)

  42. Elin Gregory April 15, 2012 at 2:13 pm #

    Squeeee Ada Lovelace!!! So that’s where she got her ideas from. Brilliant! As for the numbers I’m lost!

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 2:22 pm #

      Yay, an Ada fan! And on the numbers, you unintentionally got it: “As for the numbers I’m LOST” heehee

      • Elin Gregory April 16, 2012 at 2:19 am #

        LOL I thought capitalising it might be too much of a giveaway – likewise comments about the puzzle you hatched or that there are so many answers it could be a lottery. God I miss Sawyer!

  43. Elaine Cantrell April 15, 2012 at 2:17 pm #

    I’m blushing here. I always watched Lost, but I didn’t recognize the numbers. Super six.

  44. Karen Michelle Nutt April 15, 2012 at 2:47 pm #

    Great six! Lost numbers–clever sneaking those in. lol

  45. susan craig April 15, 2012 at 3:16 pm #

    Congratulations, Angela. Way to go!

  46. epbeaumont April 15, 2012 at 3:26 pm #

    OK, I can’t say I blame Ada. Even now, I find myself think, “shoot, this is the future! look at the blink things! where are the flying cars?”

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 3:42 pm #

      I know, friends of mine have been saying that for years too: “Where’s the flying cars we were promised?” — but I just saw an article last week that there are now some prototypes being tested :)

      • epbeaumont April 15, 2012 at 3:56 pm #

        Not necessarily good news, flying cars–imagine the horrors of three-dimensional rush hour. :)

  47. Owllady/Marcia April 15, 2012 at 4:48 pm #

    Hi Angela! Like your Six and the premise for your story as well. I didn’t get the numbers reference, but I watch very little TV-I’d rather write :) I’ll pop by again.

  48. Ryan April 15, 2012 at 4:49 pm #

    Wasn’t 1564 the year Shakespeare was born? Not really pop culture, but it’s the only thing that came to mind. Fun six, Angela. I’m always fascinated by this aspect of time travel, convincing someone you’re from the future.

    • angela quarles April 15, 2012 at 5:27 pm #

      Nope, not ole Shake a Spear — some others have commented, ’tis LOST and the infamous number sequence 4, 8, 15, 16 etc., and the superstitious part of me is wary of typing out the rest, LOL!

  49. Kylie Scott April 15, 2012 at 4:50 pm #

    Great six, Angela. I’m thinking all the puns on the numbers have been done? Excellent job sneaking them in there and congratulations on all the finals.

  50. Jennifer Lowery April 15, 2012 at 4:53 pm #

    Awesome description! Awesome six!

  51. Jenna Jaxon April 15, 2012 at 5:19 pm #

    Great scene. Didn’t get the ref until someone mentioned LOST. Fun. Great six.

  52. Chantel Rhondeau April 15, 2012 at 5:36 pm #

    Well, I think I figured it out from reader comments, but I’ve never watched that show, so I wouldn’t have made the connection, even if I realized there was a connection to make! LOL

    Great six! I just loved Ada! Even if she was a secondary character, I really enjoyed her scenes!

  53. Amy Durham April 15, 2012 at 5:41 pm #

    I don’t get the pop culture reference either, but I loved this snippet! Picturing her showing off a phone after traveling back in time… priceless!

  54. Ginger Simpson April 15, 2012 at 6:35 pm #

    Very intriguing idea to plant a “puzzle.” I didn’t get it at first, but finally, recalled watching the episodes. Quite crafty of you. :) Best of luck with your queries.

  55. Carrie-Anne April 15, 2012 at 6:40 pm #

    Cute scene, though I didn’t get the reference since I don’t watch much tv outside of the educational channels.

  56. Donna Cummings April 15, 2012 at 6:40 pm #

    This is fun! I’ve liked the snippets where she was experiencing the past, but it’s great to have her show them what the future has in store too. :) I had to think about the LOST reference — I loved that show. What a great idea to put in something like that!

  57. siobhanmuir April 15, 2012 at 7:42 pm #

    I think it’s great that you include both references for the history buff and the pop culture set. Good six, Angela. :)

  58. Cherie Marks April 15, 2012 at 8:23 pm #

    Congrats on the final. Good luck in the contest! I have to be honest, I didn’t get the reference, but I also didn’t watch LOST. Still a great snippet!

  59. sarahballance April 15, 2012 at 8:46 pm #

    I can’t imagine seeing something from the future so far out of the realm of imagination. What a great six! (And I missed the reference, but I don’t watch much TV. I did enjoy reading through comments trying to figure it out, though!)

  60. Kate April 15, 2012 at 9:24 pm #

    Yeah, I never would have gotten that because I’ve never seen the show. My sister would have though, and she will be loving your book too.

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