View Full Version : Introductory bit (408 words)

November 7th, 2014, 05:09 PM

November 14th, 2014, 12:03 AM
I think the story per say is interesting. I see a vintage living dead feel spun in a new way. In particular, the way in which the symptoms of this mysterious illness manifest themselves gradually opposed to all once makes it more interesting. And I think there is potential for a good short story and/or novella with this theme.

If I could make one criticism though, I did not enjoy the narration style very much at all. It isn't the first person per say, but the fact that the person addressed the reader with the line "you wonder?" Now, unless the character is writing a letter or recording a diary directed toward no one in particular, I think that this line should be omitted because directly speaking to the reader in 1st person just doesn't seem like good narration (although you can do it in 3rd person).

But other than this, I found the story intriguing. I think that the best direction to go in is to keep the sense of mystery--let the tale gradually unfold.

November 14th, 2014, 12:32 PM
Thanks a lot JamesR. I see your point about directly addressing the reader. My thinking was that this piece would be part of an autobiography that the character was writing at a later date, but I suppose there's no reason for the reader to know that that's what's going on. It was one of those bits I hadn't initially put in, but then decided to add just before uploading it. Guess it messes up the tension here.

November 19th, 2014, 10:44 AM
I enjoyed the introductory bit, and would definitely be interested in reading more. It was interestingly quirky!

November 21st, 2014, 08:32 PM
Definitely intriguing (I like the bizarre), and well-written for the style you're going for. The mysteriousness should easily make this a page-turner, but there will have to a be a fair amount of clarity in subsequent chapters/pages or else the reader will have a hard time relating to it, or even understanding what's going on – but it's good to have elements like this left out, and it adds to the sense of casualness that goes with your narrator. Keep writing : )

November 24th, 2014, 04:29 AM
I'd kill for an introductory sentence like that. Twenty words and you had me in your back pocket. A tip of the hat for strong imagery. I want the rest of the story to live up to that little blip. In that one sentence, and several times throughout, you create such powerful still frames of action like written photographs. Hard to resist the burning glow of a trash bin on fire, for example. I thought those had such strength as to carry the story through a bit of weaker, almost rambly bits that seemed neither here nor there. I want to know more about that blue fairy and what matters.

All that aside, you had a lot of passive voice going on, the "to be" verb splashed about overmuch, in my humble opinion. Those flimsy sentence structures can't support the weight of my expectations having been shot through the cannon on the very first period. I thought a lot of that extra info held my interest but also confused the plot, enough that even your narrator admits that they should probably start over again. The combination of these two things in that middle section put out the flames, for me.

I don't mind the fourth wall breaks, to be honest. I think they have a lot of potency when properly employed; I think you made a decent job of it, although, I'll urge consistency going forward. If you break often enough for that to stay fresh in our minds, it doesn't seem out of place.

I'd love to read more of this. I'd love to see where it goes. Write some more.

November 25th, 2014, 10:19 PM
Thanks very much for taking a look over this for me ChrisChandler00, Pishwi and thepancreas11. I'm glad the opening paragraph seems to be doing what it's meant to.

thepancreas11, I just wonder if you could point out some of the middle sentences that you thought were weaker, perhaps ones with passive voice and poor structure. I've not had any writing tuition on this sort of thing and I've just been trying to read up on passive and "was done" etc, but it's always helpful to have examples to go with it.

Cheers again

November 26th, 2014, 12:59 AM
You're on track. Read that third paragraph. Instead of saying it was worrying say what worried you. That sort of thing. "The dragon worried me." That's an active sentence structure. Basically, eliminate the bet "to be" wherever possible.

December 3rd, 2014, 07:01 AM
I liked it. The text had a very distinctive style, and I liked the opening action as well.

The only thing I could criticize about it would be that there is a bit too much information in the first paragraph, and it can be a bit hard to follow. Fairies, desks on fire and a mystery illness are a lot to take in all at once. Also, it could be a bit jarring if this transitions into a third-person story later on.

Other than that, pretty good ^^

December 4th, 2014, 10:39 PM
I liked it. The writing style alone would intrigue me to read more.

December 5th, 2014, 05:01 AM
Too many conflicts going on at once. By which, I mean the pacing is way too fast, especially since you introduce a lot of the difficulties without logically connecting them. For instance, how is waking up related to the fairy related to the fire related to the disease? How is the father involved? There's some vague imagery, but, so far, I'm not enamored to the character because he doesn't seem like he has problems I can relate to.

Also, the general effect of the writing is humorous, which kind of clashes with the sense of mystery you have going on. Right now, your hooks are mysterious, but the humour portion seems out-of-place, like a joke without a punchline. It's not properly funny unless it's front-and-center. So I would advise you either: stick with your general problems (while clarifying them or picking just one) or make everything seem like a silly situation he got himself into (which means you'll have an entirely different hook, displaying the end result and then flashing-back).

December 5th, 2014, 10:41 PM
Thanks all for the feedback. Yes, I know what you mean about the humour element, ShadowEyes. It's a section for the reminiscences of a main character whose natural tendency is to view difficult situations with a dry, witty detachment. Whether this makes for a successful bit of writing is debatable, so thank you for pointing it out. I'm not going to give up on this bit, but I'm beginning to suspect it could use a bit more pacing work.