Am I Getting Any Better?

Okay, my next attempt in the writing exercise to work on character description.  How am I doing?

Tom Witherspoon was no one special back in high school, unless Aribelle’s love made him special.  He wasn’t short and he wasn’t tall, he wasn’t ugly and he wasn’t handsome, but Aribelle loved him.  He was the kind of guy you had to get to know to love, and once Aribelle got to know him, she couldn’t get enough of him.  He was funny in a subtle way, one really had to think about what he was saying and realize the irony.

Aribelle’s friends didn’t get the appeal, but it didn’t matter, because once she made up her mind, there was no changing it.  And she adored his grey eyes and strawberry blonde hair.  He just wasn’t like the other guys- that’s what she liked the most about him.

He scheduled the appointment at the salon because his mother kept harassing him about his long hair.  She complained that he was never going to meet anyone else if he looked like a hobo.  Of course, after his five-year marriage ended, he wasn’t exactly looking for a new relationship.  He had his hands full enough with Emmy, his three-year old daughter, and learning how to cook, clean, and pay bills for himself all over again.

The marriage hadn’t been bad.  It just hadn’t worked.  After Emmy’s birth, things became strained.  Julia felt more and more tied down and began to resent Tom’s “free-spirited” existence.  He could never figure out where she got the idea that he lived a “free-spirited” existence, but stopped arguing the point after a while.  He finally supposed that the fact that he left every morning to go to work and she was “stuck” at home every day with the baby gave her the idea that he could go off gallivanting with his friends whenever he felt like it.

Now she was working again and Emmy spent the day with one of her grandmothers.  Tom had her for two weeks straight, then Julia had her for two weeks.  It was the easiest and best solution for the time being, but Tom worried when Emmy reached school age that the constant moving back and forth would cause problems.   Julia never wanted to talk about that, even though kindergarten was only a year and a half away.

2 thoughts on “Am I Getting Any Better?

  1. I like it a lot. If I had a suggestion, it would be a transition sentence either after or at the end of the second paragraph that explains that Aribelle and Julia are different. “But Aribelle and high school were years behind him.” or something.

    It might just be that I like smoother transitions in short passages; personal preference perhaps?

    Reguardless, this is well written and conveys a clear set-up without wasting the reader’s attention.

    1. Thanks for your thoughts! I don’t intend to actually use these passages in a real book or story, so that’s probably why I didn’t pay attention to the transitions, but I appreciate you pointing it out. It is another thing I need to work on!

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