Ornery.org
  Front Page   |   About Ornery.org   |   World Watch   |   Guest Essays   |   Contact Us

The Ornery American Forum Post New Topic  Post A Reply
my profile login | register | search | faq | forum home

  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» The Ornery American Forum » Ornery Writers Workshop » OWW Critiques & Discussion *** (Page 2)

 - UBBFriend: Email this page to someone!   This topic comprises 4 pages: 1  2  3  4   
Author Topic: OWW Critiques & Discussion ***
canadian
Member
Member # 1809

 - posted      Profile for canadian   Email canadian       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Re: The Parable of the Fig Tree

Outstanding work, KE!

It brings to mind the older sci-fi that I really love...Niven, Asimov, Silverberg, etc. It's nice to actually have a STORY!

I loved the pacing, and the end scene rocked. My heart rate increased and I really felt the tension and anxiety.

----------

I only found a few things (this is how I think it should be):

General Malin's finger strayed...

However, almost imperceptibly, the Chairman hesitated.

chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

----------

And this, to me, is just a little awkward:

Now, what I want from you and the Joint Chiefs are contingency plans for, if, I determine that this...

One last element might be the repeated use of "burden of proof", but then again, that's what this story is all about so maybe just ignore that...

----------

Again, great story! I was captivated. I've often found it difficult to "get into" something I'm reading on-screen, but I didn't have that problem with this story at all.

Being slightly OCD, I did find it hard to have cigars at the beginning of the story and no mention of them again. I think that may just be me, though..

[Wink]

[ March 24, 2005, 02:46 PM: Message edited by: canadian ]

Posts: 5362 | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
canadian
Member
Member # 1809

 - posted      Profile for canadian   Email canadian       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Adam Lassek:
Canadian --

I loved the narrative style of Blood Matters. Very stream of consciousness; it reminded me of Fight Club.

I agree with Richard about the boys' characters needing some further development.

Thanks Adam!

I've never read 'Fight Club', only watched it...

But as to the boy's further development, I'll see what I can do.

Posts: 5362 | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks Canadian.

I too often have a hard time reading stories onscreen. I usually print them out if they are as long as the one I wrote. Yours I read onscreen and didn't have any trouble with. I think that is a tribute to the pacing and style.

The cigar thing. When SG reveiwed it for me maybe a year ago he like the cigar thing as a way of definging the differences between the two characters. However, at that time the Admiral played a larger role (roll, RD) in the story. So, does anyone else have any comments on that aspect of the story?

If so I would really like to hear it as I believe the first part of a story is really important in engaging the reader. Thanks.

KE

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
RickyB
Member
Member # 1464

 - posted      Profile for RickyB   Email RickyB   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
KE, great story.
However, one syntax comment and one style somment.

"the stranger claiming to be Jesus Christ's arrival" should be "the arrival of the stranger...". I always try to put the adverb before the subject when the subject is compounded. (I hope I got all that grammar-speak right [Big Grin] but the point stands)

As for style, I think the point that "thgere's no proof this alien is who he claims to be" is mentioned a wee bit too often.

Ed. to add: I love the way this story reminds one of Montezuma...

[ March 24, 2005, 04:09 PM: Message edited by: RickyB ]

Posts: 19145 | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
canadian
Member
Member # 1809

 - posted      Profile for canadian   Email canadian       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I wonder if there'll be a Montezuma's revenge...

A sequel?

;)

Posts: 5362 | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks Ricky. I rewrote and cut and pasted moving paragraphs around that I think you are right about the repetition of that point. Others have pointed it out, and I plan on changing it. Thanks a lot for your time and advice.

KE

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
The following is a copy of the email I received from Canadian and forwarded, with my comments, to all the members that have requested story submissions. Please read my comments and let me know what y'all think about edits and resubmissions. I am in a quandry on this issue.

Canadian's email:

"I've edited this, so let me know what you think. I've included a little
more information about Phil, added a few sentences about the boys, and
amalgamated Jason and Ryan into Ryan...

I kind of wanted to write about two boys, but I'm thinking now that if I
just 'beef up' one character (Ryan) that should give a little more dimension
to the "idea" of the boys...maybe?

A."

Forwarded by, KE.


Above you see that Canadian has sent in an updated copy of his story, and I am forwarding it to you. If you haven't read it yet, I think he would prefer if you read this version. If you have read it, I don't think you should feel obligated to read it again. But please do so if you want to.

I too edited my story and sent it to people, but I was more invisioning members that have not yet read it, not to be reread. I'm not sure if that is asking too much.

It might not be with Canadian's story, but mine is so long that rereading the whole thing would be a bit much. What do y'all think regarding this issue?

I wonder if we should put a time limit or a number of redrafts on a story? Maybe one redraft after initial critiques are all in? (Allowing redrafts to be sent to members that haven't yet read the original copy.) Or maybe the author being responsible for highlighting areas of the story that have been changed so the reader doesn't have to reread the whole thing, but can see the updates?

(I will post this on the OWW thread so that everybody sees it and can comment.)

KE

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
canadian
Member
Member # 1809

 - posted      Profile for canadian   Email canadian       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
The highlighting of the edits is a great idea for passages, etc...but when
it comes to punctuation that might be a little more difficult.

I like the idea of "under no obligation" to re-read a story, but I did find
I enjoyed reading yours the second time around with the edits, so...but I
can see that there may be some stories that just don't interest us in a
re-read.

And it's a good rule:

one edit...maybe some discussion (or not) on the effictiveness of the
changes, and then we put it to bed...unless of course there are extenuating
circumstances or a desire to see a final proof somewhere down the line.

Are we thinking about publishing these works? Would it be worthwhile to
craft the best we can, and choose the best of the bunch and see if OSC wants to take the
little community he started under his wing? Just a thought...

[ March 24, 2005, 04:26 PM: Message edited by: canadian ]

Posts: 5362 | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Canadian, I don't think "interest" is the main factor in rereads, but length and the time members have to devote to each story.

Perhaps one reread and/or highlights, what do y'all think?

As for publishing, I am planning on sending my SS to Asimov Magazine as soon as I have gotten everybody's input and made the changes I think appropriate. (I would rather send it to OSC because he is my favorite author and I feel a sense of loyalty to him because of all he has done for us, but I worry that it might be an imposition on him.)

Even if OSC is willing to help us, the idea of choosing the best sounds a little scary to me, and I worry that in doing so some members might get their feelings hurt or that their might develop some level of animosity which would defeat our purpose for coming together. However, if y'all think we can do it without negative impact on the group I'll be happy to go along with whatever the consensus is.

I think the OSC part of the question would best be addressed to the OM, and I personally feel I should hold off on approaching him until I get everybody's input. (Of course everybody is free to do what they want and if anybody wants to talk to the OM that is fine with me, but like I said; I personally feel I it would be best to wait until we hear what everybody thinks concerning the issue.)

KE

[ March 24, 2005, 04:39 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Daruma28
Member
Member # 1388

 - posted      Profile for Daruma28   Email Daruma28   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Canadian - I liked your story as well, your shifting timeline and sequence of events reminds me of a Tarantino film. I'll read your re-write in a bit, but overall, I liked it, and don't have anything to add above and beyond what others already have.

KE - I have to laugh at your story - but not because I think it's terrible or anything. Your narration is excellent, you create a good setting in the minds eye...but I think your a BIT over the top with the depiction of an evangelical fanatic as President and a Southern Televangelist as the most influential counselor. Although I do realize that it is essential for your story's ending - which was pretty good - one could almost see your contempt for devout religious belief. I think you could get the same result without being so overt.

My only suggestion would be to change the televangelists name to something less "southern" - Bobby Lee is almost a caricature to the point of ridiculousness...and I would change this kind of line: "despite the dire warnings of the liberal media, the talking heads and political pundits."

But maybe that is your overall point - to make an over-the-top satyrical jab at Christian beliefs and the current administration. My only real critique would be you could tone down the satire -- especially with the "Bobby Lee" character just a bit, and still get the same result in the end.

There are fundies in every corner of our country afterall...there is no need to make him a southerner.

Finally, I think when you do submit your story, take out the header "Finale."

Just put in a line break like

------- or some othe kind of storyline break to indicate a change of scenery.

Overall, I did like it...especially the ending.

Posts: 7543 | Registered: Nov 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
canadian
Member
Member # 1809

 - posted      Profile for canadian   Email canadian       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
KE:

Of course...

I'm not suggesting that we go full throttle or jump the gun. I imagine a vague possibility in a far away future.

As to adjuducating, I agree...I wouldn't want to do it, nor would I know where to start! I was just musing 'aloud'.

Daruma:

Thank you!

---------

Now, where are the other short stories and essays?

[ March 24, 2005, 05:29 PM: Message edited by: canadian ]

Posts: 5362 | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks Daruma. This is exactly why I wanted your input so much. In this case it is an asset that we see things from diametrically opposed directions, and I really appreciate your help. I appreciate your pov and agree with much of what you say. You put your finger directly on one of the biggest problems I faced. I wanted to avoid the caricature aspect, but still have the reader recognize the kind person the Reverend represented. To me it seems that most men that hold the beliefs that Reverend Matthews does are almost caricatures such as Billy Graham, Pat Robertson, Jerry Fallwell, etc. I tried not to do the Reverend in the story over the top. I might have missed that goal with the name.

And all those guys are intelligent and I tried to argue his side of the argument intelligently. Did you think there was dialog from the Reverend that made him appear stupid or bumpkinish? I do admit that I think the religious argument eventually always breaks down to faith. Conversely I wanted to point out that the other side though I think based on logic, does eventually break down to a lack of faith. Which is why I had the president point out that there was absolutely nothing that the man in question could do that would convince him he was Christ. And my ultimate point is that there is no way of knowing.

I also though I erred on the side of caution in my depiction of the president. I made him eloquent powerful and beloved. Though overtly religious. Do you think I was unfair with him? Or that he acted in any way contradictory to what a religious president like Bush would act? That is one of the reasons I have solicited the opinion of the OA members in regard to the return of Jesus Christ. And most say that they will indeed welcome him and his reign.

Something I found suprising is the fact that names are some of the hardest things for me to come up with. But, I don't want anything to be overt so I'll edited it with an idea to that danger and I have considered changing the Billy Lee monicker before.

Once again, thank you so much for your help.

KE

[ March 24, 2005, 05:44 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Daruma,

One other question. In regard to the liberal media line and the like. I was sincerely trying to paint the media as liberal and fearmongering, and contrast that to the fact that the people so loved, respected, and trusted the president despite of their liberal influence. Do you think I failed in that, and do you think that your knowledge of my political leanings had any affect on your ability to take me seriously when I slammed liberals in the media? Not that there would be anything wrong with that. In fact it would be natural. But it is not something the average reader would be privy to.

I really want to address the problems you see, so I really want to understand exactly what you are seeing and where you are coming from. Thanks again. I can't wait to hear from you on this issue.

Also, everybody, I would love to hear what people have to say concerning other people's reviews, and I'm sure Canadian and future authors will want that as well. Does anyone see any problem with reveiwers discussing their reviews and how they feel about the other persons comments?

Does anyone else feel I made a caricature of Billy Lee? I am not looking for justification or vilification of Daruma, that is the last thing I want as I value his opinion and think he is a rare asset especially to me because of his pov. I just want other opinions on the subjects raised to help me contrast and compare opinions and decide what changes I should make.

Of course we should demand extra civility in this area since much of it is based on opinion and not so much fact as we are used to dealing with on OA.

KE

[ March 24, 2005, 06:05 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
canadian
Member
Member # 1809

 - posted      Profile for canadian   Email canadian       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Actually reading Daruma's review of your work raised questions and issues that I hadn't thought of. It actually enhanced my memories of the story and fired up some questions that otherwise would have remained dormant.

I tend to be a little skeptical of religions, so I kind of took the depictions of the "faithful" in stride. But now that the issue is raised, I see that I simply allowed for a bit of stereotyping.

KE, I think that if you take Daruma's suggestions, your faith-based characters will have an opportunity to really feel more complex than I first wanted to give them credit for.

[ March 24, 2005, 06:07 PM: Message edited by: canadian ]

Posts: 5362 | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Great Canadian. This is what I was hoping for. Not just critiques but discussions of the critiques in order to get a consensus.

I have just reviewed and decided to take out the "liberal" and talking heads and political pundits. I think I can make the same point that the people trust the president by just saying "despite the dire warnings of the media" without causing the reader to think about the current "liberal media" argument and thus take them out of the moment. I'm going to look at the religious characters again, now.

KE

[ March 24, 2005, 06:16 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Richard Dey
Member
Member # 1727

 - posted      Profile for Richard Dey   Email Richard Dey   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
KE: The Bibles that claim that God is a 'he' are 'old' [Big Grin] and, by correctionist standards, 'obsolete'. There was a usage in the quote that used a semi for a comma. That was VERY old.

A strong voice of dissent on the issue of stereotyping [Mad] . These were short stories, not a novella, not a novel. Look for example, at the 3-or-4-sentence deppiction of Phil in Candian's story -- just an impressionistic blink of him; and no problem for me. We all know 'the bully with the heart of gold'; we didn't know the bully with the heart of gold who goes a knife-edge too far. That's why I think a lot preferred to urge some motivation for the kids; we know his motivation: suppressed homoerotic interaction tendentiousness syndrome (****S).

Stereotypes and caricatures (I've yet to see cartoons) are MORE than acceptable short-forms in the SS. They abound. (And all the evangelists in the North I know have Southern accents.) Ayuh and Amen.

Chairman: I think the technics of managing version flow will eventually work themselves out, but I think there will be a couple of rough weeks if there's a flood.

I am ... I WAS ... working on a story, but now I'm so intimidated, I'm going to go to a workshop before I submit to OWW [Eek!] .

Posts: 7866 | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
RD,

OWW is a workshop. [Smile] And one of which you are a founding an important member. We need you to lead by example and submit your work.

I think we should make the words of OSC that I quoted earlier into the OWW motto.
quote:
Card adds, “It doesn’t even take confidence to write. It only takes confidence to mail out what you’ve written. In any event, confidence is something one has to come up with on one’s own. There will always be better writers than me and I have always been better at some things than at others. If a writer can’t live with the fact that whatever he’s written is not the best thing ever written and is not perfect in every way, then he’ll never survive. You have to reconcile yourself to imperfection. “The writers I like to help are the ones who have the initiative to write and the confidence to mail things off to publishers.
And the first steps to sending our work off is presenting it to the group. I think we should look at even rejection slips as badges of honor showing we had the courage to do what OSC says we should do.

On that note I am planning on submitting to Asimov Magazine because I have read that it is more character driven and less science than say Analog. I think my story will fit better there. However, I realize I am aiming high and that I probably will have to submit it to lesser known magazines eventually. But I am looking forward to either being published or receiving the badge of honor showing that I have taken the first steps to becoming a real writer in the image of OSC.

KE

[ March 24, 2005, 06:44 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Daruma28
Member
Member # 1388

 - posted      Profile for Daruma28   Email Daruma28   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I think I was trying to say that your presentation of the media and the nation as a whole in your narrative were a bit too caricatur-ish. I was thinking more along the lines of maybe just being a little more explicit in defining the liberal media as a PART...and maybe working in a little bit more of how the nation does have a significant faction that holds the skeptical/non-religious viewpoint.

Your constrution implies -- or gives the impression -- that the dissenting staffers/cabinet members were the only voices of logical reason in an entire country of religious fundamentalists.

You have to remember that Presidents like Reagan won by a massive landslide, of which no doubt a large contingent of voters were not religious minded folks. You can describe a religously faithful President, but NOT imply that he was elected and popular because of it.

And yes, when I did read your story, I really REALLY did keep reminding myself that I had to try and read this as if I had no prior knowledge of your political/philisophical viewpoint already....but even with that in mind, it still came across as a bit over the top.

I was thinking more along the lines of something like:

"despite the dire warnings of the talking heads and pundits from the liberal contingent of the media," rather than removing any mention of a liberal or conservative media..just a little more qualification instead of painting with such a broad stroke of generalization.

The way you had it come out, you can here YOUR voice of sarcasm in the narrative...and it gives the overt impression that this is a political piece rather than a sci-fi story.

Anyhow, enough of the critique...I must say it reminded me of my favorite Sci-Fi author - sorry OSC - but your short story reminded me of Alan Dean Foster. He's a master at short story sci fi while subtly pushing a point of view. For Foster it was mainly condemning corporate greed and exploitation. For this story, I wouldn't use the term "subtle" to describe your underlying theme here. [Smile]

Posts: 7543 | Registered: Nov 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks again Daruma. I appreciate you explaining it to me, and I see what you mean. I'm going back over it now with your critique in mind. Thanks for the compliment. I have heard of, and I'm sure read Alan Dean Foster in the past, but I can't remember any of his books off the top of my head. Could you remind me of the name of a few?

KE

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Daruma28
Member
Member # 1388

 - posted      Profile for Daruma28   Email Daruma28   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Midworld

Gift of a Useless Man

The End of the Matter

The Man Who Used the Universe

Icerigger

The Spellsinger series

Slipt

The Day of Dissonance

Into the Out Of

Glory Lane

Maori

THe entire Flinx series, and a whole boatload of novels turned into movies including:

the Alien Series,
The Last Star Fighter,
PaleRider (not scifi of course, but his writing nonetheless),
The Black Hole,
Clash of the Titans,
Krull,
Starman, and Riddick.

The guy is prolific...but it was your story that reminded me of his short stories from his two collections, With Friends Like These... and Who Needs Enemies?

But my favorite is Midworld. IMO, it was his "Ender's Game."

Posts: 7543 | Registered: Nov 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
hywer
Member
Member # 2046

 - posted      Profile for hywer   Email hywer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
KE: I just finished Parable. I have to say, I was most impressed with the plot, let alone the way you handled dialogue! That's a hard thing to put together, but it flows well and naturally while achieving your goals for the plot. The pacing was also fairly smooth, though I would have changed some of the paragraph breaks (see my e-mail reply).

And besides, even though I knew there was going to be a twist, I didn't see it coming! You laid the foundation for it and executed it well, because afterwards I said, "Oh, right. Should have guessed that!" [Smile] I also appreciated that you explained exactly what happened and how, instead of leaving me to guess. Miracles can be that way sometimes... [Wink]

I have quite a few structural suggestions, and I plan on emailing you the Word document with my suggested changes highlighted. I won't post them here because it would take up too much space.

As a matter of story pragmatics, consider strengthening Chairman Malin's hesitance to shoot the President on terms of loyalty, fear of reprimand, fear of what history would say about him, etc. It provides a good reason why he would let so much be said without acting. If I was as resolved enough to shoot the President as Malin, I wouldn't wait until he had said all that before pulling the trigger! And you need the President to deliver his whole message in order to deliver your.

I personally don't really think you need to change Billy Lee's name. He's a caricature which we can identify quickly, and you should only change it if you feel like you want to change the caricature. When he insisted on calling the Chairman a heathen, I was my esteem of him went down--which may be exactly what you were shooting for!

Be aware that this story is a strong political and religious statement, presented in a traditionally powerful form (the sci-fi short story). Some people will agree with you and others won't, but they won't be able to attack your story. I think it's quite well done, and enjoyed it, even if my views on religion are different than yours! [Wink] That says something, I think. It's easy to like something that reinforces your views (even if it's poorly written), but to like something you disagree with requires a better story. Let me know if you publish it. I'd love to see it in print!

Canadian: I'm planning on having a review of your newest draft done by Saturday morning or Friday night.

Cheers!

Posts: 205 | Registered: Sep 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
kenmeer livermaile
Member
Member # 2243

 - posted      Profile for kenmeer livermaile   Email kenmeer livermaile       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
OK, you guys seem to be having fun. I'd like to join. Can I come and play in your treehouse?
Posts: 23297 | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Hywer,

Thanks a lot for your critique I will be looking forward to seeing the changes that you suggest.

KL,

Great! I'm glad you are interested and I will be emailing you copies of the first two stories.

More tomorrow, I am dead tired tonight. Night.

KE

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Adam Lassek
Member
Member # 1514

 - posted      Profile for Adam Lassek   Email Adam Lassek       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
On second reading of the updated Parable, I think the neutrality of the narrative breaks down a little at this point:
quote:
But Billy Lee answered for him. “The Catholics are concerned that with Jesus Christ on Earth, they will lose their monopoly on communication with him, and thus their money and power.”
The chairman smirked at the hypocrisy of a televangelist accusing anybody of using religion for personal gain.

Perhaps you should rewrite the second paragraph as a thought going through the chairman's mind.
Posts: 553 | Registered: Feb 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
hywer
Member
Member # 2046

 - posted      Profile for hywer   Email hywer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Good point. It's usually better for the narrator to be outside of the story. Since you still want to say that, just change it to the Chairman. This happens a couple of times, and it's real easy to fix. (I think I mentioned something like that in my suggestions, but if not... I meant to...) ^-^
Posts: 205 | Registered: Sep 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Richard Dey
Member
Member # 1727

 - posted      Profile for Richard Dey   Email Richard Dey   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
The omniscient mode is omniscient!
Posts: 7866 | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Major Stubble
Member
Member # 1820

 - posted      Profile for Major Stubble   Email Major Stubble   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Hey, for those of you who are looking to get published. I just read this blog by a slush editor at TOR publishing. I found it to be rather important when receiving those painful rejection slips for my manuscripts.

-MS

Posts: 57 | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
canadian
Member
Member # 1809

 - posted      Profile for canadian   Email canadian       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Richard Dey:
The omniscient mode is omniscient!

In the beginning was the Word?

[Wink]

Posts: 5362 | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Major,

Excellent link, thanks. That link combined with the quote by OSC are excellent reasons for not being afraid to submit our stories.
quote:
What these guys have failed to understand about rejection is that it isn’t personal. If you’re a writer, you’re more or less constitutionally incapable of understanding that last sentence, if you think there’s any chance that it applies to you and your book; so please just imagine that I’m talking about rejections that happen to all those other writers who aren’t you.

Anyway, as I was saying, it realio trulio honestly isn’t about you the writer per se. If you got rejected, it wasn’t because we think you’re an inadequate human being. We just don’t want to buy your book. To tell you the truth, chances are we didn’t even register your existence as a unique and individual human being. You know your heart and soul are stapled to that manuscript, but what we see are the words on the paper. And that’s as it should be, because when readers buy our books, the words on the paper are what they get.

Like I said; we should look at rejection slips as badges of honor. And just imagine if one of us gets published!

KE

[ March 25, 2005, 07:12 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
RickyB
Member
Member # 1464

 - posted      Profile for RickyB   Email RickyB   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Canadian - great, great ending. It reminded me of a story I once read, the name of which I seem to have totally forgotten. Something about horents nest I think. British writer.

However, on the way there I did get tired a couple of times with the sudden switches from past to present. I think you should use some kind of typography to mark those, at least part of the time. I understand the effect and like it to an extent, but it can also get annoying.

Also, a syntax comment: "issue a fight"? Issue a challenge, I think.

[ March 26, 2005, 04:02 AM: Message edited by: RickyB ]

Posts: 19145 | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
canadian
Member
Member # 1809

 - posted      Profile for canadian   Email canadian       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:


However, on the way there I did get tired a couple of times with the sudden switches from past to present. I think you should use some kind of typography to mark those, at least part of the time. I understand the effect and like it to an extent, but it can also get annoying.

Also, a syntax comment: "issue a fight"? Issue a challenge, I think.

Yes, "issue a challenge" works better.

About the breaks...I've heard this more than once now. I was hoping I could get away without any obvious

--------

clues, but maybe not...I admit it can be somewhat jolting and if you miss a transition it can interrupt the flow...Any other opinions on this?

-------------------------

Now for your "Prologus", which only made me want more...

Very interesting stuff! The party scene reminded me of the illustrations I loved as a kid reading "Asterix and Obelix".

I mean this in a very good way. There was always something profound in the portrayal of corruption and ennui in those simple drawings that as an adult I feel you captured perfectly in just a few brief paragraphs.

The humour in this chapter is very nice. Just a lilting sprinkle, and it makes the work so engaging!

A few things that pulled me out of the narrative (nothing major, whatsoever):

"Well," answered Agrippa "at the age of 70, of course that's not really expected...."

This just didn't flow with me...how about...

"Of course, that's not really expected at 70 years of age," answered Agrippa.

(or some variation thereof)

"Look, you dumb broad, this doesn't prove anything. This could be a fraud for all we know"

Funny sentence, but I just couldn't get past the "dumb broad"...my mind kept wandering back to that phrase. I understand what you are doing, and I like it...but this might have been too much? Maybe it's just me.

"O, I haven't thought of that...."

----------------------

The next two are just nit-picky:

"O, I haven't thought of that...."

"O, I hadn't thought of that..."

The scrolls in question, which had undoubtedly...

The scrolls, which had undoubtedly

-----------------

And that's it! I'm really looking forward to more!

[ March 26, 2005, 12:41 PM: Message edited by: canadian ]

Posts: 5362 | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
RickyB
Member
Member # 1464

 - posted      Profile for RickyB   Email RickyB   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Hey, comparisons to Asterix are high praise in my universe, so I thank you kindly [Big Grin]

I'm gonna go watch Israel play Ireland in a World Cup qualifier. I'll address your comments, for which I thank thee kindly, later on.

Posts: 19145 | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
RickyB
Member
Member # 1464

 - posted      Profile for RickyB   Email RickyB   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Hah! Screw all bigots! We scored an 1:1 equalizer in stoppage time (very late in the game, for all you phillistines) and who scored it? An Arab player named Abbas Souan! Yay for coexistence! [Big Grin]

As for your comments - the first one I don't see, but also don't care about so I might change it if other people say it sounds better too.

The second - yes, it's on purpose. There will be more of this. Both our narrator and his dad pride themselves on being hip and tend to use slang a lot. As they say in high tech - it's not a bug, it's a feature [Smile]

Number 3 I accept, but number 4 I don't really. What's wrong with "in question"?

Thanks agains for your kind words. More to come as soon as KE says he's ready, or conversely, as soon as he tells me just to hit "reply all" and send it myself.

Posts: 19145 | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Ricky, I haven't had a chance to read the first yet, but if you want to send the next installment that is fine with me. The only reason I was having it come through me was to make sure everybody got a copy. There have been several new members since I last emailed you so I'm not sure if you have everybody's email to "reply to"? If you do, feel free to send them out, if not, send it to me and I will pass it along.

KE

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
cperry
Member
Member # 1938

 - posted      Profile for cperry   Email cperry   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
So, I haven't received anything to read yet, but that's okay; I just started writing something new this week, and I'm obsessed. I can't stop working on it.

Briefly, I've been laid up since March 10 with a bad back, and I'm on steroids to reduce the swelling, but they make it tough for me to sleep. So, I tried to make up a story to help me sleep, and now it's a screenplay.

I have SCADS of work I should be doing, and all I find myself doing is OBSESSING over this story.

So, I am writing to ask, Has this ever happened to any of you?

And if so, do you have any help to offer? I have a life here. I can't afford this!

Posts: 2782 | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
cperry,

I sent you the invite but I didn't get an answer. I don't send anything to anybody until they have expressed a desire to receive it. Like I said; I invited you because I think you will be valuable to the group, but I don't want to force this on anybody. That said, we are glad to have you and I will send you the first few stories we are critiquing. I realize you are pressed for time, so read them at your leisure and let us know what you think.

I too have had that problem and I really don't have any advice other than try to space out your writing period (although I just usually lose sleep so I can write), and the advice I've read in books: schedule the time you can work and stick to it, neither longer nor shorter.

KE

[ March 26, 2005, 05:37 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
A question for everybody: Should short stories be single spaced or double spaced like novels? What do short story publishers prefer?

Critique of Prologus.

I really like what I've read so far. It grabbed me and made me want to find out exactly who they are and what their father had to say in the writings they are discussing. I also liked the give and take between the two characters, and I want to know more about them, their relationship, and their father and what he had to say. So, just a few suggestions and observations.

Mostly punctuation, but a few questions about word choice and sentence structure. I think I've proven that I'm no expert in the area of punctuation, so I'll write what I think is correct, and maybe RD and some of you others that are good at it can comment.

“Etnarch”? I think the first sentence in a story is very important and that you you need to grab the reader and get him involved in the story.

Thus I think you should explain what the Etnarch is rather than force him to stop reading and look down at the bottom of the page. Maybe something like:

“Having lived through madness and destruction, the Etnarch of Galilee, the title of the local ruler in the name of Rome, was not particularly susceptible to sentimental argument. “

There are probably a lot of ways to get that information into the sentence without having to take your reader out of the moment.

“An arc of sweeping hair preceded her carnal, penetrating gaze.” Isn't this his sister? Isn't carnal sexual? Unless incest is going to be a motif, and with a 67 year old women I kinda hope it isn't, perhaps you should change it to something like “her cunning, penetrating gaze.” (Since she seems pretty sharp in the rest of the story.)

“from a different point of view" continued the... (I'm no expert but shouldn't there be a comma between “view” and the quotation mark?)

"beautious" spelled beauteous ( FYI all spelling corrections are just the way I see them and using my dictionary. I realize English is a screwed up language and you may spell words slightly different in Israel than I do in Texas. So take it for what it is worth.)

“You are always saying how you not only do you have a higher regard for the truth than Josephus, but...”

Shouldn't it be “You are always saying how you not only have a higher regard for the truth than Josephus, but...” or “You are always saying how not only do you have a higher regard for the truth than Josephus, but...”

"unflichingly" – unflinchingly


"...you're becoming an old man" Said the princess. (either “an old man,” said...” or “ an old man.” Said...) And after that when he says “Well” shouldn't that be the start of another paragraph since you went from her talking to him replying?.

"Very well" Said Berenice (Berenice or Bernice?) I realize this is probably just a typo, or could be a problem with the transfer from your computer to mine, but since that will happen when you decide to send it to a publisher, we need to fix it.

“...and rot, then". (Shouldn't the period be before the quotation mark?)

"Look, you dumb broad..."

This seems to be a period piece which makes this slang out of context, and/or Agrippa, to me, seems to be above such silly name calling. Dumb broad sounds like 1920's bad slang to me. But if you are building up to something later, or his character is not as serious as I assumed due to the first few paragraphs, feel free to disregard my remarks. And if you are married to the phrase, consider “dumb old broad” which I think makes it more of a smiling insult between siblings. Or, I like even better; “Dumb old woman” which seems to fit the time and call in to question her intelligence, sex, and age. Again, just my opinion.

“mocking the very notion and his dishonesty in offering it”

(my two cents)
“mocking the very notion that this might be fraud, and his dishonesty in offering it as an excuse...”

Or “mocking the very notion of fraud, and his dishonesty in offering it...”

I like the subtly of her rejoinder, but I think it could be a little clearer so the reader doesn't have to think “mocking what very notion?” and look back up to see. Took me out of the flow. But that could just be me.

That's all I've got. I look forward to the next installment, and hearing what Ricky, and the rest of you, think about my opinion and suggestions concerning his story.

KE

[ March 26, 2005, 05:47 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
kenmeer livermaile
Member
Member # 2243

 - posted      Profile for kenmeer livermaile   Email kenmeer livermaile       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
When in doubt, double-space. When certain, let the editor pick up the tab for lunch. When in doubt of doubt, call the editor names... AFTER you've submitted as 'Richard Dey'.

Vroommmmm!!!!!

Posts: 23297 | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
cperry, I need your email address if you want me to send you the OWW stories. Since your email address isn't available through OA, and due to the fact that I don't want to email through OA, nor even if I wanted to could I send attachments (stories) using the OA email link.

Email it to me and if you wish I will not diseminate it when I email out stories. However, if that is the case, maybe you would consider opening one of the free Google email accounts? They are invitation only, but I have a lot of invitations left and will be happy to send you, or anybody else that wants one, one. This way you could be part of the OWW and maintain some degree of aninimity, which I assume you want due to the fact that your email address is not available through OA.

KE

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KnightEnder
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
KL,

My records show that you have been delivered all the stories. So, come on, what did you think of mine? Turn some of that artistry loose on the stories. Give it to me, I can take it.

KE

[ March 26, 2005, 06:05 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
  This topic comprises 4 pages: 1  2  3  4   

Quick Reply
Message:

HTML is not enabled.
UBB Code™ is enabled.
UBB Code™ Images not permitted.
Instant Graemlins
   


Post New Topic  Post A Reply Close Topic   Feature Topic   Move Topic   Delete Topic next oldest topic   next newest topic
 - Printer-friendly view of this topic
Hop To:


Contact Us | Ornery.org Front Page

Powered by Infopop Corporation
UBB.classic™ 6.7.1