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a little reading pleasure #170087
09/03/04 08:18 AM
09/03/04 08:18 AM
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The Northern Plane
mickey Offline OP
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A couple weeks ago, I was on my way out the door to go to church and I grabbed a random notebook because I was running late. I like to take notes on the sermon.

Anyway, I discovered that it was an old notebook from back when I was in high school, and I found a crude beginning to a story I had started writing, probably for my creative writing class, or maybe just because.

It was only two hand written pages long, so there wasn't much to it and I couldn't remember where I had planned on going with it, so I decided to get back into my story writing and see what I could come up with.

So far I've come up with six chapters that's probably around a half hour's worth of reading.

I've shown it to a few friends to get their opinions about it, but I've gotten pretty much no criticism on it. I blame this on them being my friends.

I've uploaded it to my site and would appreciate some feedback on it, if anyone has a chance.

The link is http://themickster.250free.com/chapterone.html

Thanks.

Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: mickey] #170088
18/03/04 08:41 AM
18/03/04 08:41 AM
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Winterfox Offline
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Here's what I get when I click on the link:

Quote:

Due to an inordinate amount of abuse, visitors to
this free account from your region or
country have been restricted.


If you are the owner of this site, you may upgrade to Platinum, which will allow all countries to view your site, as well as remove all advertising from your pages and increase your bandwidth.

For more information, please visit http://www.250Free.com/platinum.php





There's a reason, I suppose, that I still stick with the drab-and-stingy Geocities. Very little hosting space, full of ads, but reliable. I checked the "blocked regions" list and whoah, it's amazingly ridiculous.

Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: Winterfox] #170089
18/03/04 11:32 AM
18/03/04 11:32 AM
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Draghermosran Offline

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I like it, waiting for chapter 9


It's one of these days...
Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: Draghermosran] #170090
18/03/04 02:08 PM
18/03/04 02:08 PM
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Womble Offline
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I believe it was well written. Nothing I would want to read though. Maybe concentrating more on descriptive writing instead of so much dialogue might help. Right now it just reads a bit like a screenplay.
No offence of course.


" Road rage, air rage. Why should I be forced to divide my rage into seperate categories? To me, it's just one big, all-around, everyday rage. I don't have time for distinctions. I'm too busy screaming at people. " -George Carlin
Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: Womble] #170091
18/03/04 07:30 PM
18/03/04 07:30 PM
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Draghermosran Offline

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true, I missed detail, for instance describe his truck, the treehouse, his guitar.


It's one of these days...
Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: Draghermosran] #170092
19/03/04 03:14 AM
19/03/04 03:14 AM
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Somewhere between Here, ..and ...
Jurak Offline
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Somewhere between Here, ..and ...
yes the guitar.... humbuckers or not? XL's or lights? Peavy or Marshall?
sustain or reverb? crossover or phaser, and lastly.... stereo or mono?


[color:"#33cc3"]Jurak'sRunDownShack!
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Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: Winterfox] #170093
19/03/04 04:18 AM
19/03/04 04:18 AM
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The Northern Plane
mickey Offline OP
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Quote:

I believe it was well written. Nothing I would want to read though. Maybe concentrating more on descriptive writing instead of so much dialogue might help. Right now it just reads a bit like a screenplay.
No offence of course.




Yeah, I've been meaning to go back and add in more detail to the previous chapters.

I don't know if anyone notised, but I tried to be more descriptive in the last couple of chapters as opposed to the first six. I'm not saying I was successful, but I tried.

When I first started out, it was just something fun to do for myself to let off some creative energy and a lof of anger (don't ask, it's a long story I don't want to think about.) but a coupel friends I mentioned it to wanted to read it so I showed it to them, and I've been taking it more seriously since then.

I just haven't had much time lately with work and all this week.

Quote:

true, I missed detail, for instance describe his truck, the treehouse, his guitar.




Sorry, I just figured certain things had a universal description. Like a treehouse being a goofy looking wood structure with a roof.

I've actually been working on a description of the truck in chapter nine.

If anyone has any other suggestions, I'd be happy to fix it up.

Quote:

yes the guitar.... humbuckers or not? XL's or lights? Peavy or Marshall?
sustain or reverb? crossover or phaser, and lastly.... stereo or mono?




Er, they were in a treehouse in the middle of the woods. It's accoustic :P

Quote:

Here's what I get when I click on the link:

Quote:

Due to an inordinate amount of abuse, visitors to
this free account from your region or
country have been restricted.


If you are the owner of this site, you may upgrade to Platinum, which will allow all countries to view your site, as well as remove all advertising from your pages and increase your bandwidth.

For more information, please visit http://www.250Free.com/platinum.php








Well, if you want I could email it to you. I've been workigno n getting my site off the banned list so anyone can view it.

Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: mickey] #170094
19/03/04 04:28 AM
19/03/04 04:28 AM
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Winterfox Offline
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Sure. Send it to me (email removed) -- a warning, though: I'm even more critical with writing than I am with games, and that, if you ask around, is saying something.

Last edited by Macbeth; 30/09/12 08:19 AM. Reason: Email address removed per request of Winterfox
Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: Winterfox] #170095
19/03/04 04:36 AM
19/03/04 04:36 AM
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janggut Offline
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talk about stories, winterfox, i need my KOTOR fix! any more new ones?



......a gift from LaFille......
Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: janggut] #170096
19/03/04 04:44 AM
19/03/04 04:44 AM
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Winterfox Offline
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Click on the link in my sig. I've got quite a few updates since I last PM'ed you. It's now up to the eighth part. And one of these days I'll do either a game novelization with DS female PC/Canderous relationship, or a Yuthura Ban story.

Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: Winterfox] #170097
19/03/04 05:12 AM
19/03/04 05:12 AM
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The Northern Plane
mickey Offline OP
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Quote:
Sure. Send it to me (email removed) -- a warning, though: I'm even more critical with writing than I am with games, and that, if you ask around, is saying something.


It's been sent.

Last edited by Raze; 01/10/12 08:03 AM. Reason: Email address removed per request of Winterfox
Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: mickey] #170098
19/03/04 08:42 AM
19/03/04 08:42 AM
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Winterfox Offline
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I want to ask -- why present tense?

Punctuation/grammatical hiccups. Many spots need a comma and have none; other spots don't need a capitalized letter and have one; there are spelling mistakes. A quick proofread should fix it.

First chapter -- as the others said, the descriptions are extremely sparse. There's so much dialogue, and almost no narrative, such that it seems like a skit more than prose. The characters' dialogue have issues, too -- they don't talk like real people. Mark doesn't talk to Corey like a friend. He talks like a self-help textbook on love-life. Or Aunt Agony. As a result, he doesn't seem to be anything more than a talking cardboard cut-out who's just there to nag Corey into finding a girl. Corey, similarly, is bland.

Second chapter -- still no characterization that I can see. The chapter seems devoted mostly to letting several characters describe Corey's virtues (as opposed to, you know, let the character show it in actions himself), something that I wince at quite a bit. Hopefully, this won't turn into a brooding Gary Stu.

Third chapter --

 Quote:
Corey, Mark, and Jessica are walking across the St. Lawrence University campus after lunch heading for the student parking lot.


Details, details, details. This sentence is an example of why underdone descriptions are bad. It's bland, it's boring, and it's about as fun to read as a sheet of physics formulae.

 Quote:
Corey turns his head to look at Jessica and says, "You're Thai, aren't you?"


Show, not tell. Never tell. Ever. How does Corey tell Jessica is Thai? Slanted eyes? Facial structure? Height?

On a similar count, none of the characters gets described, either. What's up with that?

The dialogue is beginning to grate on me. It reads like a ping-pong game at stalemate: it drags on and on and gets nowhere. Certainly, in real life, small talks don't go anywhere, but in fiction, you're supposed to hold the reader's attention, not bore her to sleep. Maybe I'm not a fan of teen humor/young adult books, at that, so I find some of the supposed-to-be-funny bits less than clever.

Still no characterization, and we're over 2,000 words in. The characters each seems to have all the emotional depth of a very tiny puddle. I'm not asking you to dramatize every little thing into five pages' worth of angst, but this is terribly bare-boned.

I'm stopping here, because if I continue, this post will get much too long. Bottom line: do try to set scenes. The story, thus far, has exactly zero atmosphere. It's not badly written in the sense of mangled grammar and murdered English language, it just doesn't tickle my interest. It doesn't intrigue my senses (sound, sense, smell, taste, sight); the plot doesn't seem to have manifested yet; the characters are lifeless.

Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: Winterfox] #170099
19/03/04 12:35 PM
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Draghermosran Offline

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"corey picked up his guitar, not standard acoustic guitar, beige, brown frets. This one was black, with finished white borders, a white fretboard with a red rose roots at the bridge running over the fretboard and its blossom on the head."

to give you an example how you could personilze the guitar to the story.


It's one of these days...
Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: Draghermosran] #170100
19/03/04 12:59 PM
19/03/04 12:59 PM
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Kejero Offline
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If Corey gives a d*mn at all what the guitar looks like...



I think it's all right, although I do agree on a few points.

A lot of dialogue -- doesn't bother me - most novels have a lot of dialogue - but compared to events and "verbal painting", there's too much. Or in other words, it would be a good idea to add more irrelevant description (and make them relevant with the excuse that you need them to add to the athmosphere, of course ).

Then the characters... I agree with WinterFox there -- I don't feel like I "know" any of the characters, not even Corey after spending eight chapters with the guy. How well do YOU know Corey, Mickey?

As I said, it's all right in my opinion. I did afterall read through it, and I liked reading it, although I have no clue why. IS it going anywhere? I like the comfort of knowing that a published book will eventually, probably go somewhere. This story better goes somewhere too!

Aside from that, your "columns" are pretty good Mickey. Got any more coming up?


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Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: Kejero] #170101
19/03/04 01:26 PM
19/03/04 01:26 PM
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mickey Offline OP
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 Quote:
I want to ask -- why present tense?


I've always used present tense because it helps make it seem like the story is unfolding as it's being read.

 Quote:
Punctuation/grammatical hiccups. Many spots need a comma and have none; other spots don't need a capitalized letter and have one; there are spelling mistakes. A quick proofread should fix it.


You'll have to point out som specific spots, because I've proofread it a million times.

First chapter -- as the others said, the descriptions are extremely sparse. There's so much dialogue, and almost no narrative, such that it seems like a skit more than prose. The characters' dialogue have issues, too -- they don't talk like real people. Mark doesn't talk to Corey like a friend. He talks like a self-help textbook on love-life. Or Aunt Agony. As a result, he doesn't seem to be anything more than a talking cardboard cut-out who's just there to nag Corey into finding a girl. Corey, similarly, is bland.

Second chapter -- still no characterization that I can see. The chapter seems devoted mostly to letting several characters describe Corey's virtues (as opposed to, you know, let the character show it in actions himself), something that I wince at quite a bit. Hopefully, this won't turn into a brooding Gary Stu.

Third chapter --

 Quote:
Corey, Mark, and Jessica are walking across the St. Lawrence University campus after lunch heading for the student parking lot.


Details, details, details. This sentence is an example of why underdone descriptions are bad. It's bland, it's boring, and it's about as fun to read as a sheet of physics formulae.

 Quote:
Corey turns his head to look at Jessica and says, "You're Thai, aren't you?"


Show, not tell. Never tell. Ever. How does Corey tell Jessica is Thai? Slanted eyes? Facial structure? Height? Pick up a random person off Hong Kong, pick up a random person from Thailand. Chances are that, if they stand still and stay silent, you wouldn't know which is Chinese and which is Thai. For your information, I'm Thai with Chinese blood. Your luck, yes? <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" />

On a similar count, none of the characters gets described, either. What's up with that?[/quote]

Some of what you just mentioned is part of what I planned to go back and change as I mentioned in a previous post, such as character descriptions, but you did give me several ideas to help make it better. Thanks.

 Quote:
The dialogue is beginning to grate on me. It reads like a ping-pong game at stalemate: it drags on and on and gets nowhere. Certainly, in real life, small talks don't go anywhere, but in fiction, you're supposed to hold the reader's attention, not bore her to sleep. Maybe I'm not a fan of teen humor/young adult books, at that, so I find some of the supposed-to-be-funny bits less than clever.

Still no characterization, and we're over 2,000 words in. The characters each seems to have all the emotional depth of a very tiny puddle. I'm not asking you to dramatize every little thing into five pages' worth of angst, but this is terribly bare-boned.

I'm stopping here, because if I continue, this post will get much too long. Bottom line: do try to set scenes. The story, thus far, has exactly zero atmosphere. It's not badly written in the sense of mangled grammar and murdered English language, it just doesn't tickle my interest. It doesn't intrigue my senses (sound, sense, smell, taste, sight); the plot doesn't seem to have manifested yet; the characters are lifeless.


Once again, thanks for the ideas.

 Quote:
"corey picked up his guitar, not standard acoustic guitar, beige, brown frets. This one was black, with finished white borders, a white fretboard with a red rose roots at the bridge running over the fretboard and its blossom on the head."

to give you an example how you could personilze the guitar to the story.


Hm, that is pretty good. I haven't played the guitar in years, so I'd forgotten what the various parts of it were called. Thanks.

 Quote:
If Corey gives a d*mn at all what the guitar looks like...



I think it's all right, although I do agree on a few points.

A lot of dialogue -- doesn't bother me - most novels have a lot of dialogue - but compared to events and "verbal painting", there's too much. Or in other words, it would be a good idea to add more irrelevant description (and make them relevant with the excuse that you need them to add to the athmosphere, of course <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/winkwink.gif" alt="" /> ).

Then the characters... I agree with WinterFox there -- I don't feel like I "know" any of the characters, not even Corey after spending eight chapters with the guy. How well do YOU know Corey, Mickey?


Well, I suppose I would know Corey pretty well, being the authour and all, but I could do a better job fleshing him, and the other characters out.

 Quote:
As I said, it's all right in my opinion. I did afterall read through it, and I liked reading it, although I have no clue why. IS it going anywhere? I like the comfort of knowing that a published book will eventually, probably go somewhere. This story better goes somewhere too! <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/think.gif" alt="" />


Yeah, it's going somewhere. When I first started writing this, I was justw riting to write and didn't plan on doing much with it. I was just trying to get back into my writing and get some practise.

 Quote:
Aside from that, your "columns" are pretty good Mickey. Got any more coming up? <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />


Yeah, I have had a few ideas running through my head lately, just no time to write much out.

Thanks for the help and the ideas guys.

Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: mickey] #170102
20/03/04 06:59 AM
20/03/04 06:59 AM
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Winterfox Offline
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Quote:

You'll have to point out som specific spots, because I've proofread it a million times.




There're simply too many to put in a public post; I'm not you beta-reader, after all. Some examples, though--

Quote:

Mark says catching the ball and throwing on the run.




Mark says, catching the ball...

Quote:

"That doesn't make you German. That makes you Aryan," She tells him with a smile.




"That doesn't make you German. That makes you Aryan," she tells him with a smile.

Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: Winterfox] #170103
20/03/04 11:18 AM
20/03/04 11:18 AM
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mickey Offline OP
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Quote:

There're simply too many to put in a public post; I'm not you beta-reader, after all. Some examples, though--




I know you aren't my beta reader. I just meant a few examples to give me an idea of what I was doing wrong. Ihe things you poined out a just a few things I overlooked.

Re: a little reading pleasure [Re: mickey] #170104
22/03/04 02:20 PM
22/03/04 02:20 PM
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If I could interject again. IMO past tense would look better. Simply because that is how you see most stories written.


" Road rage, air rage. Why should I be forced to divide my rage into seperate categories? To me, it's just one big, all-around, everyday rage. I don't have time for distinctions. I'm too busy screaming at people. " -George Carlin

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