Over on his blog Gopher's posted up a chunk of something he's working on asking for opinions. Thought I'd do the same (especially as I attempted to critique - it was supposed to be helpful!) and it seems fair to allow him to do the same to me.... if you want to that is Gopher!
Before I pasted the following in I thought I'd give it a quick read through to make sure I don't utterly shame myself, but after deleting a bit of the 2nd line I decided to just post it warts and all as maybe that'd be more interesting. Okay, enough excuses, here's a bit of 'Green and Pleasant Land' uncut and raw -
Oh yeah, just to set the scene in the previous chapter a tree has grown in a school car park over night.....
Awkwardly Dylan pressed the numbers on the keypad of the small mobile phone his inexperience making him clumsy. The phone rang and rang until Dylan gave up took the phone away from his ear and looked down at it as if it were an alien artifact and pressed the end button to make it stop.
“No, he’s not in,” said Dylan to his school friend. “Still at the allotment,” he added.
“There’s a surprise.”
“Yeah,” said Dylan as he handed back the mobile phone to Gareth. ‘Thanks for that.”
“No problem.” Gareth put the phone into a pouch on his bag strap, ‘You going to get a phone then?”
It was not the first time Gareth had asked this question, Dylan had hoped his friend would have realised by now that it was very unlikely he was going to get a mobile phone, but Gareth wasn’t noted for being smart or sensitive.
“You should, I can’t imagine how you can do anything without one.”
Trying not to make it sound like a sigh Dylan made a noncommittal sort of sound and carried on walking. As handy as a mobile phone might be he couldn’t afford one and neither could his dad. Anyway, as far as Dylan could tell all a mobile phone did was allow you to send pointless text messages or waste time saying nothing very important to someone you saw all the time anyway.
“Are you going to meet your dad at the allotment then?” asked Gareth tiring of advertising the merits of mobile phones.
“No, if I’m still going to get home before him I’ll start making dinner.”
Gareth and Dylan were late because they had stayed to see what was happening around the tree in the car park. Clegg, the school janitor, had cordoned off the tree with some of the ‘caution wet surface’ signs. Three of them had fallen over in the wind and the fourth looked equally incapable of the task of protecting the tree from observers. A few other school children had decided wait until Mr Wales had left so they could have a closer look at the tree.
Something about the tree drew Dylan to it. Stepping over one of the fallen yellow signs he reached out touching the rough bark with the tips of his fingers before placing both his hands flat on the trunk. It felt warm and seemed to pulse beneath him. A girl Dylan recognised from the year above followed his lead. Then another girl, and then a boy, and another. Of the sixteen children who had decided to hang around the car park after the school had closed twelve of them had felt the need to touch the tree.
Gareth had not been so impressed, “What do they look like, eh?” he chuckled to Alex Stebbs, a well built boy good at running, hockey and beating up other children if he felt like it. “Shut up Barnacle,” he replied as he stepped through the crowd to touch the tree himself.
By the time he and the others left Dylan thought he should see if his dad was home incase he was wondering where his son was. Luckily Gareth never missed a chance to get into anyone’s good graces and happily loaned Dylan his mobile phone.