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The Corner of my short stories. (1 Viewer)

itwascold

Senior Member
Tarot in the park

TAROT IN THE PARK

I remember the park where it all started. It was summer. I had set my folding table and was placing the cloth. The heat began to retreat behind the shadows of evening and the people, after having walked around the pond, formed a circle close to the musicians who prepared their performance. People came to my table to have their Tarot cards read.

The atmosphere was casual and relaxed and I was absorbed in the task of observing the bustle of strollers.

"Can you assist me?"

I hadn´t noticed the presence of this woman until she spoke. She was brown, thin, and very attractive, and she wore a cheerful dress that contrasted with the somber expression on her sharp face. She had an aura of tension and, her dark eyes, gave me great distress. My intuition told me "danger" but I forced myself to smile in the hope that not all difficult situations end badly and, after hesitating a moment, finally agreed.

"Yes, right now." – I said.

She sat staring at me while I finished preparing the cards.

"Do you want the large or simple Tarot?"- I asked.

"I don´t understand ..."

"The simple would only take us fifteen or twenty minutes, and the larger, more complete and detailed, one hour."

"I prefer the large Tarot, as you call it."

"Perfect. Now relax. I'll guide you. Let´s shuffle the cards and try not to think about anything."

As she shuffled, I watched her, puzzled by the repulsion I felt, but I was determined not to let that feeling interfere with the session.

"Could you give them back to me, please?" – I asked.

I felt the cold touch of her hand and I began to shuffle the cards, closing my eyes, willing her to disappear. I concentrated burrowing deep into my mind trying to block her out. When I opened my eyes, her eyes drilled into my soul. Was that hatred in her eyes? Madness? I breathed deeply and asked her what she wanted to know. Her reply was instant. With a challenging look she simply asked:

"Shall I do it?"
 
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Scarlett_156

Senior Member
I think this might be an interesting story, but all the paragraphs are squeenched together, making it hard for me to read.

It's easy to edit your posts to put more space between paragraphs, if they don't look right once you post them; you just have to hit the "edit post" button.

When I say that the paragraphs need more spacing between them, here's what I mean:

That evening the atmosphere was very casual and relaxed and I was absorbed in the task of observing the bustle of strollers.
"Can you assist me?"
I had not noticed the presence of this woman until she spoke. She was brown, thin and very attractive, dressed in cheerful dress that contrasted with the somber expression on her sharp face. She had an aura of tension and, her dark eyes, gave me great distress. My intuition told me "danger" but I still went ahead with the reading in the hope that not all difficult situations will end badly. I forced myself to smile and, after hesitating a moment, finally agreed.
"Yes, right now."

Ok, here's how it looks with regular paragraph breaks:

That evening the atmosphere was very casual and relaxed and I was absorbed in the task of observing the bustle of strollers.

"Can you assist me?"

I had not noticed the presence of this woman until she spoke. She was brown, thin and very attractive, dressed in cheerful dress that contrasted with the somber expression on her sharp face. She had an aura of tension and, her dark eyes, gave me great distress. My intuition told me "danger" but I still went ahead with the reading in the hope that not all difficult situations will end badly. I forced myself to smile and, after hesitating a moment, finally agreed.

"Yes, right now."

That's what I'm talking about.

If I'm going to make a long post on a forum, a lot of the time I type what I want to post out in word processing (Wordpad, Notepad, MsWord, Openoffice writer, etc.) first and then once I've edited it, I copy/paste my post into the text window, instead of just typing it right in there.

She had an aura of tension and, her dark eyes, gave me great distress.

I think that is a bad edit, there. (Only you know how it should actually read!)

So, moving right along: I see no major flaws in this narrative besides that it's not presented very well. As a beginning to a story, it reads nicely. Don't be discouraged, and keep working on it.
 
I remember the park where it all started. It was summer.
What is 'it'? Don't apply personal pronouns to things that are not mentioned for it creates confusion.

She was brown, thin, and very attractive
We all know what brown and thin are but attractiveness is solely dependent on the preceiver. Even if it was not you should let the reader come to the conclusion that she is attractive. Present details and actions, but do not make up their minds.

cheerful dress
How can a dress be cheerful when dresses cannot express emotion as an inanimate object? She cannot wear a cheerful dress; however, she can wear a bright yellow, daisy sundress that can convey cheerfulness.

somber expression
What is a somber expression? Is it when someone's gaze is fixated downward and the bottom of their eyelids swell with tears?

sharp face
A sharp face or does her face have sharp and angular features?

She had an aura of tension
I nor the sweeping majority of people on Earth can sense auras. If I could sense them I am sure the energy permeating from them could make my stomach turn and my muscles tighten but receiving tension from another person is a hard thing to fathom with nothing physically or emotionally relevant to my everyday senses.

her dark eyes, gave me great distress
She can have dark eyes but how did they give you distress? Looking into her dark eyes could make you feel hopeless, or you can feel uneasy by their dark appearance. Eyes however, cannot take their pain and transit some of it to you.

"Yes, right now." – I said.
You don't need dashes it should look like this:

"Yes, right now." I said.

Great job on the minimal but efficient dialogue tags.

Was that hatred in her eyes? Madness?

Referring to rule no. Twenty-nine of the Selekted Riting Wrules I ask, "Who needs rhetorical questions?"
 
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itwascold

Senior Member

What is 'it'? Don't apply personal pronouns to things that are not mentioned for it creates confusion.


We all know what brown and thin are but attractiveness is solely dependent on the preceiver. Even if it was not you should let the reader come to the conclusion that she is attractive. Present details and actions, but do not make up their minds.


How can a dress be cheerful when dresses cannot express emotion as an inanimate object? She cannot wear a cheerful dress; however, she can wear a bright yellow, daisy sundress that can convey cheerfulness.


What is a somber expression? Is it when someone's gaze is fixated downward and the bottom of their eyelids swell with tears?


A sharp face or does her face have sharp and angular features?


I nor the sweeping majority of people on Earth can sense auras. If I could sense them I am sure the energy permeating from them could make my stomach turn and my muscles tighten but receiving tension from another person is a hard thing to fathom with nothing physically or emotionally relevant to my everyday senses.


She can have dark eyes but how did they give you distress? Looking into her dark eyes could make you feel hopeless, or you can feel uneasy by their dark appearance. Eyes however, cannot take their pain and transit some of it to you.


You don't need dashes it should look like this:

Yes, right now. I said.

Great job on the minimal but efficient dialogue tags.



Referring to rule no. Twenty-nine of the Selekted Riting Wrules I ask, "Who needs rhetorical questions?"

Hi dear new member,
As a writer I know the way of writing my words, it is my own way, and if I want to say "cheerful dress" of course I do it, I find it wonderful, why not? a potatoe can be very sympathic too!!!
Referring to all your other comments I really believe that you have a bad day, nevertheless thankyou for showing a so great interest about a so short story. :geek:
 
As a writer I know the way of writing my words, it is my own way, and if I want to say "cheerful dress" of course I do it, I find it wonderful, why not?
You don't have to agree with me but if you are so set in your ways as a writer, as you seem to be, then why is this piece up for critique? I know that you and everyone who isn't you has there own way of writing their words, but giving inanimate objects human emotion is unrealistic and does not paint a picture in anyones head, therefore, I suggested you change it for clarity.

Referring to all your other comments I really believe that you have a bad day
No, I am not having a bad day; I am offering advice in which to strengthen your work of writing. I was never condescending nor called you names, I only pointed out flaws and offered examples and explanations to fix them. A writer dosen't grow from appraisal but from the recognition of their flaws and the effort put forth to fix them. The way I see it, I took a good amount of time from my day to offer you advice and a chance to grow as a writer. I only told you of mistakes that I too have made and have been corrected by fellow writers, so I am only transmitting information that has helped me before. I am not trying to bring you down. I love when people nit pick every flaw in my writings because I desperately want to grow as a writer and I take everyone's' thoughts into consideration.
 

itwascold

Senior Member

Indeed, the curious thing is that this text is the result of a very wise corrections that other writers in this forum and in another forums have suggested to me in a constructive way, freeing my mind of course ....
Greetings
 
Indeed, the curious thing is that this text is the result of a very wise corrections

You mean to imply that your writing is now beyond corrections and that I am not wise? So even though best selling books, from the greatest authors of all time, have many mistakes in them after being re-read, re-wrote a thousand times, and sent off to a professional editor but your short story is flawless? If so then why bother posting it here? Go get it published you perfect writer.

suggested to me in a constructive way
Are you implying my critique wasn't constructive?
con·struc·tive
[kuh
thinsp.png
n-struhk-tiv]
–adjective
constructing or tending to construct; helping to improve; promoting further development or advancement

I guess I never offered ways to further advance the efficacy and accuracy of your work by providing examples and rules...

freeing my mind of course
Now your mind is free and unlimited? Then you really don't need advice as your knowledge emcompasses all.

Your opinions are yours however; I find it offensive that my work and time are valueless to you, as you aren't prepared to take advice nor reconstruct your work in hopes of improvement, for you posted this writing apparently with no intention to take criticism. That or you demean the efforts of fellow writers who take time to read and offer opinions by calling them 'new member' rather than their names and implying their level of wisdom before you get to know them.
 

itwascold

Senior Member
You mean to imply that your writing is now beyond corrections and that I am not wise? So even though best selling books, from the greatest authors of all time, have many mistakes in them after being re-read, re-wrote a thousand times, and sent off to a professional editor but your short story is flawless? If so then why bother posting it here? Go get it published you perfect writer.


Are you implying my critique wasn't constructive?
con·struc·tive
[kuh
thinsp.png
n-struhk-tiv]
–adjective
constructing or tending to construct; helping to improve; promoting further development or advancement

I guess I never offered ways to further advance the efficacy and accuracy of your work by providing examples and rules...


Now your mind is free and unlimited? Then you really don't need advice as your knowledge emcompasses all.

Your opinions are yours however; I find it offensive that my work and time are valueless to you, as you aren't prepared to take advice nor reconstruct your work in hopes of improvement, for you posted this writing apparently with no intention to take criticism. That or you demean the efforts of fellow writers who take time to read and offer opinions by calling them 'new member' rather than their names and implying their level of wisdom before you get to know them.

I really feel honored that someone so instructed in writing and reading takes up so much on a text as simple as this short story. Thank you very much for your enthusiasm and for all the time you are using in my humble text..

I take the time to read your wonderful comments taking a tea to your health.
 

Bruno Spatola

Senior Member
She had an aura of tension and, her dark eyes, gave me great distress. -- I don't think there should be any commas in this sentence.

My intuition told me "danger" but I forced myself to smile in the hope that not all difficult situations end badly and, after hesitating a moment, finally agreed. -- Why is this a difficult situation exactly?

"Yes, right now." – I said. -- Yes I agree, lose the dash. Also, this sounds like a very strange response, didn't feel realistic at all. If somebody said "Can you assist me?" to me, I would never say "Yes, right now." I can imagine Arnold Schwarzenegger saying it in the Terminator, but here, I don't know, appears out of place no matter how I look at it.

"I prefer the large Tarot, as you call it." -- I prefer makes it sound as if they understood perfectly. I'd prefer is better, I think. Minor gripe.

"Could you give them back to me, please?" – I asked. -- I don't really understand the dashes. I get the feeling this character wouldn't say please. This other person asked for her help, and she said "Yes, right now." Somehow I doubt they would say it like this, they seem more of a "Give me the cards" sort of person going from their previous line.

I concentrated burrowing deep into my mind trying to block her out. -- Comma after concentrated and mind me thinks.

When I opened my eyes, her eyes drilled into my soul. -- This stuck out. What do you mean exactly? You can't just leave it there, expand a bit more, describe what this felt like.

"Shall I do it?" -- That has peaked my interest, but I can't say much about the rest, to be blunt.

Didn't really care why any of this was happening, it didn't click with me. I'd say it was overly superstitious, but that's personal taste, not a criticism.

The dialogue needs work. It's quite formal and lacks any distinction right now, and that makes your characters have zero personality. The way a character speaks says a lot about them.

I didn't enjoy it because it was quite vague and not very descriptive. I'd like to have soaked up their surroundings more, that's all. The part with the musicians preparing was interesting, but too short. Colours, smells, sensations, sounds, describe them to me, take me to this place, make me feel like I'm this person.

I'd think there was a lot more going on in a park, so I only imagine the bits you tell me. I just picture two people sitting around a table and that, to me, is boring.

There's nothing really wrong with what you wrote, just how you wrote it.

Hope this helps, good luck :D
 
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Once you just work on improving this, this works as a great story intro.

What works as a great hook is the immediate sense of danger introduced by this woman. But it would be more effective if the surroundings helped reflect/convey this sense of danger. Perhaps the contrast between her surroundings and this woman?

Example, you could describe the nonverbal body language or other mysterious features. Use adjectives like dangerous only plottedly, once you've used other more visceral means of description as mentioned.

Good start. :)
 
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