Welcome Liam To The True Haven
SummaryThe True Haven follows Liam's Struggle as a book that he is writing does not get published. Liam decides that he would put himself in his character's shoes (Who gets lost in the forest) and sets off in the forest. While in the BlackBird Forest he and his friend Jane stumble across a cult nestled high in the BlackBird Forest mountains.
The build up of excitement and tension is good. Liam's angst concerning his writing career and finance and the mystery surrounding the forest community is built up well. Just enough details are given without giving up the whole story, which adds excitement.
The characters reactions to the events in the story could be more realistic to help engage the reader. There were times when I'd be distracted from the story because I didn't think characters where believably reacting to what was happening around them. For example, Jane and Liam's initial reaction to hearing Macalister on the radio seems too tame. Normal people I'd think would be much more freaked out. Strange that Jane is so eager to meet meet strangers in the remote forest. Perhaps if you built up Liam's desperation to get a good story, or if you made it so they accidentally came across the community. Also, the moment they first came across a person in the woods should have really freaked them out. Jane's reaction asking "hey what are you doing up here in the forest!" seems too bold. And Jane's leaving Liam alone in the woods with these strange people seems unlikely as well. If she's scared for herself, then why isn't she scared for Liam? And if Jane is reluctant to drink the strange local water, why isn't she stopping her friend from drinking it too? These may seem like small details but they distract from the story. If you can fix these small issues, I believe the viewer will be more engaged. The good thing is the story itself is solid.
Once Liam and Jane enter the forest, the story seems to take on life, but the events leading to that point seem a bit slow and mundane. I believe there's a way to shorten this part of the story by cutting parts out. Perhaps the scene with Liam at his publishers is unnecessary. You explain everything that happened in the meeting when Liam goes over the event on the phone with Jane anyway. And the transition from the first phone call with Jane to their second call back-to-back seems like an awkward scene jump. Either jump to a completely different scene, combine the similar scenes together, or add a scene in between the similar scenes. It would be different if the second time Jane came over in person rather than talking to him on the phone again. But the fact that they're talking on the phone again is repetitive. Another solution to condensing the beginning of the story could be getting rid of it entirely, and starting the story right when they head out for the forest. You can explain the events leading up to where they are with the use of flashbacks.