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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > November 2016 > Under the microscope

Under the microscope

Author and lecturer James McCreet puts a reader’s first 300 words under the scrutiny of his forensic criticism

Annie Percik has been writing as long as she can remember, but this, a fantasy novel set in an alternative present day without electricity, is her first attempt at a novel. She likes to run away from zombies in her spare time. She enjoys Finnish emo rock music and helps her teddy bear publish his adventures in his blog. He is much more popular than she is online.

1 Some puns are slyly knowing and offer added insight. Some are surprising or deft plays on words. Some are merely opportunist, offering little depth or resonance beyond their immediate gimmick. It’s too early to say which category this title might belong to, but I rather suspect it’s the third one – unless the story turns out to be concerned somehow with class entitlement and the landed gentry.

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WIN! A book deal AND a 5-day trip to Iceland Writers Retreat in our exclusive competitions Start write: How to get started, enjoy new styles and create a solid foundation for your novel Learn from the best: Shotr stories, romantic fiction and reportage Star interview with £1m-a-year self publisher Adam Croft News you can use: 20 packed pages of opportunities, competitions and insider know-how in Writer's News

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