Write It Sideways

Excerpt Critique: “Heavies,” Action/Adventure

Thanks to today’s aspiring author for sending in this action/adventure excerpt for feedback. It’s called, “Heavies.” Please take some time to help this writer by offering constructive criticism.



‘Write your name here please.’

A cross marked the spot she indicates. Glancing over my shoulder I scrawl my name hurriedly across the page. The boat is pulling out of the dock but she doesn’t seem concerned, instead she takes her time to process my paper work.

She reads aloud the warnings, paragraph after paragraph. Rules and regulations that I must adhere to if and when I finally get across the border.

My passport is secured under her stamp and she waves me through. I sprint for the dock but it’s a wasted effort, the boat is long gone and it’s the last one of the day. Twelve hours, fourteen minutes and 32 seconds until the next boat; a night spent in the derelict terminal looms ahead of me.

Each passing minute makes it harder to relax, the hands on the big dirty clock face tick off my crimes. Tick, the penalties I will pay. Tick, the time I will spend behind bars if caught. Tick, tick, tick.

Word of the day toilet paper. This morning before I left the secure pod and ventured across the city to the docks, the last words on the roll before my last attempt at escape: ‘impending’. Smeared with my crap ‘impending’ was flushed down the loo.

In and out, that’s what Frank promised. The job was supposed to be clean, supposed to leave no trace of suspicion. I should have been sitting pretty.

This, it turns out, is what he meant by clean: I have to get my arse of the platform and clear of authority before day break.

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