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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > January 2017 > Under the microscope

Under the microscope

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

Amanda Steel is originally from Yorkshire but now lives in Manchester. After studying Open University creative writing courses, she was inspired to pursue her lifelong love of writing. She has published various work on Amazon, including the short novel, After The Zombies, of which Not Human, which begins with this passage, follows.

Not Human

Grace lay on the basement floor,1 trying to slow her breathing,2 before Luke finished locking up for the night,3 so that he would think she was asleep.4 It seemed like overkill,5 since they might just be6 in the most secure place in Wolverhampton,7 possibly even in the whole of the UK,8 barring any secure government facilities.9 Luke had become the king of overkill though,10 ever since the two of them had locked themselves away in the house, which had previously belonged to someone Grace knew.11

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About Writing Magazine

• STAR INTERVIEW WITH LEE CHILD, the multi-million selling creator of the Jack Reacher novels • Writing wisdom from the great Greek thinkers – rules that have stood the test of time • How to make your historical fiction stand out, and top tips on the genre from author Nicola Cornick • Study the short story masters to learn the art of the unreliable narrator • The magazine sleuth - how every magazine tells you exactly what its editor needs

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