#1
well, here's a really, really rough draft of the first of three, maybe four parts of a short story. Don't worry if you're a little confused by the end of this, you're supposed to be.
Part II

what we have here is a failure to communicate…

When the familiar riff floated through my head, I knew that I had died and gone to hell. It was the only conceivable explanation. Screw the fact that I was already dead – well, at least I thought I was. Obviously I was stuck in purgatory for God knows how long (no pun intended) and have now been judged and sent packing. Nice. Sorry to let you down guys, but it turns out hell is a dark hole filled with Guns ‘n’ Roses songs. And apparently the record-player is broken.

what we have here is a failure to communicate, what we have here is a failure to communicate, what we have here…

“Can someone turn that sh*t off?” Oh, I can speak. Or can I? Maybe it’s just in my mind. I guess it must be, because no one answers, and the infernal record-player keeps jamming – curiously in time with a dim flickering in the distance. Bored, I lift up my arms. Well, I think so anyway. I feel the sensation of lifting them, but it’s so f***ing dark I really couldn’t know. Ok, I think, let’s try something else. So, with amazing ingenuity (further proof of the intellect of man), I lift one leg and set it down. The act of this sends my body towards the ground in a forward motion, and I discover the Hell is in fact cold. And rather painful. For a dead guy, that hurt like hell. And then I passed out. Great, dead, in hell, and passed out. Now I’m confused and f***ing pissed off. Oh, and sore.

what we have here…

Is a f***ing huge headache. A motherf***er of a headache in fact. On top of that, I seem to have twisted my ankle. I get to my feet, for lack of something better to do. Yes, it seems that is what I have done, for is tumble and nearly fall again. I certainly would have, had not the table (I’m only guessing here) in front of me broken my fall by jumping out and mating furiously with my shin like a rabid dog in heat. Wonderful, I’m a sore, confused and pissed off dead guy who thinks he’s a poet. Someone get out the f***ing Hallmark cards. I wonder if they have Hallmark cards in Hell?
death
be gentle like the breeze
hug around my body and
lower me softly onto plush sheets
caress me tenderly
before ripping my f***ing heart out of my chest
and
holding it beating before my eyes
proceed to mate with it in a fashion that would make
the hardest pornographer blush

I might be dead, but I still have my sense of humour. Yay me. Sigh.

So let me paint you a picture (moving from one art to another). I’m standing in the middle of a pitch black and cold Hell, with a motherf***er of a headache, a twisted ankle and now, a barked shin. So with tears running down my eyes, using my hands as eyes, I feel around the table, ambling slowly forward as if I was starting a new fashion of concrete shoes or 8-balls. Unfortunately, my hands failed their eye test and I promptly smashed into a wall, fell over backwards and landed on something hard and metallic. what we h… Oh, now we have a failure to communicate. As I blacked out again (how can you black out in pitch darkness?) I was left with the thought that maybe this wasn’t Hell after all (clever, hey?)

I awoke with vision, and with vision came clarity. Illuminated in daylight, the room was as foreign, maybe even more, than it had been last night (or was it two nights ago? God knows how long I’d been out). Sometime during my unconsciousness I had rolled off of the CD player, which I had managed to smash quite well, and now lay on my side in the middle of a cold and clinical room. Daylight was beating its way through a broken window now covered thick with vines, casting bizarre shadows across the floor. The room was bare except for a table a five cylinders standing side to side along the back wall. All were full except one. I’m sure I must have screamed when I realised that there were bodies floating in the cylinders. My heart somewhere between my brain and my spleen, I stumbled to my feet and look around wildly for a door. Finding it only made it a whole lot worse. CRYOGENIC FACILITY – ROOM 6B. I wonder if it’s natural to pass out so many times a day.
Last edited by kdownes at Dec 1, 2008,
#3
boo go songwriting ftw
Myspace.

Quote by djmay71
it wasn't 7 days, it was 5.

and you call yourself the son of catholics

Quote by hugh20
I would keep it on my mantel piece and tell my grandchildren about the day I tried to overthrow the human race with my race of tree-men.
#5
Mr. Downes, I feel entirely sorry for you and will return to this later.

:/
There's only one thing we can do to thwart the plot of these albino shape-shifting lizard BITCHES!
#6
To the above, you're contribution was predetermined by your screen name.

Kdownes; I kinda got uninterested before halfway. I think this suffers mainly from early-prose piece-itis though, so you can kinda ignore me if you wish.

You read a lot of this on here from various people who want another challenge, and it's always mostly early attempts like this. Trying to write with an edge, going far too much for style over substance.

For really good prose, especially if you're aiming for some short stories, you need to be more precise, more calculating. This is just, idk, to me, an example of immaturity to writing. There's no sense that something is being created here that will last with me, there's no sense of character, of setting, of individiual viewpoint. It's just, bleh, too many ideas blurted out onto a page, too quickly, without any real sense of how to write with structure and poise.

But, like I said, if it's a first piece or whatever of writing in a longer form, then alls well that ends well.

Just make sure you read alot. Best way to learn. Alot, and varied.
#7
wat.
THAT WAS INTENSE. MORE NOW.
Ok, and now for a small crit. I absolutely loved it, you lead us up thinking it would be some religious mumbojumbo, metaphor filled thing. Than BAM! right at the end you slap us in the face with some good ole' scifi. I can't wait to see the other parts. The only thing that I felt took away from the story a small bit(and I mean very small) is the use of profanity, some writers like to use it, I personally don't. Still awesome though.
this one is for you.
#8
actually this is return for me. I spent about four years writing short stories, then took a short break for poetry, and now i'm returning to short stories. The reason this is so cluttered is because we are stuck in the mind of the main character, so we only know what he knows, which, at the moment, is about jack****. As the story progresses it becomes a lot clearer exactly what is happening. As for reading, i'll read about ten-twelve books a week from varying authors, anything from Stephen King (my biggest insiprer) to James Patterson, Matthew Reilly or Dean Koontz, just to name a few

EDIT: Thanks EBshabutie, i'm glad you enjoyed it. That was kinda what i was going for. And the profanity is only there for character honesty purposes.
Last edited by kdownes at Nov 30, 2008,
#9
Well in that case I'll take back my benefit of the doubt, lol.

I thnk you could use a little subtletey and structure. It feels very rushed, very two-dimensional (albeit this is only the first quarter or so, it's still hard to really feel much potential depth to this imo) and, like I posted, feel there's more style-over-substance here. Especially shown in the swearing, pop-culture references, edginess of the narrator and lapses into italisced/broken line forms.

Just felt unstructured and rushed, for me.

My opinion is just that.
#10
haha, you won't like most of my first-person style short stories then. Quite a few of them a rather rambly and stylistic. I like to focus on introspection. What goes through people's minds when they are faced with a great unknown or terror. I love the mind. But I can understand it's not everyone's cup of tea
#11
Quote by Jammydude44
To the above, you're contribution was predetermined by your screen name.

Kdownes; I kinda got uninterested before halfway. I think this suffers mainly from early-prose piece-itis though, so you can kinda ignore me if you wish.

You read a lot of this on here from various people who want another challenge, and it's always mostly early attempts like this. Trying to write with an edge, going far too much for style over substance.

For really good prose, especially if you're aiming for some short stories, you need to be more precise, more calculating. This is just, idk, to me, an example of immaturity to writing. There's no sense that something is being created here that will last with me, there's no sense of character, of setting, of individiual viewpoint. It's just, bleh, too many ideas blurted out onto a page, too quickly, without any real sense of how to write with structure and poise.

But, like I said, if it's a first piece or whatever of writing in a longer form, then alls well that ends well.

Just make sure you read alot. Best way to learn. Alot, and varied.

I'm going to completely agree here. A good piece of prose is precisely calculated, and not just blurted out. Think of prose more as an emotionally fueled math equation, with each number representing an idea that ties into the solution.
Quote by ottoavist

i suppose there's a chance
i'm just a litte too shallow to consider
that maybe i've been a little more eager
each day to wake up and take a shower
brush my teeth and smile for the mirror
#12
Quote by kdownes
well, here's a really, really rough draft of the first of three, maybe four parts of a short story. Don't worry if you're a little confused by the end of this, you're supposed to be.


what we have here is a failure to communicate…

When the familiar riff floated through my head, I knew that I had died and gone to hell. It was the only conceivable explanation. Screw the fact that I was already dead – well, at least I thought I was. Obviously I was stuck in purgatory for God knows how long (no pun intended) and have now been judged and sent packing. Nice. Sorry to let you down guys, but it turns out hell is a dark hole filled with Guns ‘n’ Roses songs. And apparently the record-player is broken.

quoting cool hand luke is a surefire way to my heart, also, my dislike of guns 'n' roses is making me want to like this more, however, the writer side of me is telling me that while this was nice, it's too "immature teen lit" with all its not-so-subtle pop culture skewering.

what we have here is a failure to communicate, what we have here is a failure to communicate, what we have here…

“Can someone turn that **** off?” Oh, I can speak. Or can I? Maybe it’s just in my mind. I guess it must be, because no one answers, and the infernal record-player keeps jamming – curiously in time with a dim flickering in the distance. Bored, I lift up my arms. Well, I think so anyway. I feel the sensation of lifting them, but it’s so ****ing dark I really couldn’t know. Ok, I think, let’s try something else. So, with amazing ingenuity (further proof of the intellect of man), I lift one leg and set it down. The act of this sends my body towards the ground in a forward motion, and I discover the Hell is in fact cold. And rather painful. For a dead guy, that hurt like hell. And then I passed out. Great, dead, in hell, and passed out. Now I’m confused and ****ing pissed off. Oh, and sore.

okay, we have an introduction of surroundings and i even feel a little bit of connection with the character, this probably should've been the first stanza. also the second use of "fuck" seems out of place.

what we have here…

Is a ****ing huge headache. A mother****er of a headache in fact. On top of that, I seem to have twisted my ankle. I get to my feet, for lack of something better to do. Yes, it seems that is what I have done, for is tumble and nearly fall again. I certainly would have, had not the table (I’m only guessing here) in front of my broken my fall by jumping out and mating furiously with my shin like a rabid dog in heat. Wonderful, I’m a sore, confused and pissed off dead guy who thinks he’s a poet. Someone get out the ****ing Hallmark cards. I wonder if they have Hallmark cards in Hell?

more humor that just feels a little too lowbrow to fit into a quality writer's piece. the table mating with your shin image felt a little over the top. you also use a lot of passive language in this stanza which makes it read slightly goofy. i like the play off the repeating mantra into the opening of this cut though. that was clever, even if the mantra is seeming less and less relevant as i read on.

death
be gentle like the breeze
hug around my body and
lower me softly onto plush sheets
caress me tenderly
before ripping my ****ing heart out of my chest
and
holding it beating before my eyes
proceed to mate with it in a fashion that would make
the hardest pornographer blush

I might be dead, but I still have my sense of humour. Yay me.

okay so the faux-poem starts fine, not exactly pulitzer worthy, but you're supposed to be mocking hallmark, so it's utterly-forgivable. however, once you get into fucking the heart, it hits like a brick, and i don't mean that in a good way unfortunately. it just seems so amateur and internet-forum humor-y. also, i highly recommend you strike the "yay me" from the end of this cut.

So let me paint you a picture (moving from one art to another). I’m standing in the middle of a pitch black and cold Hell, with a mother****er of a headache, a twisted ankle and now, a barked shin. So with tears running down my eyes, using my hands as eyes, I feel around the table, ambling slowly forward as if I was starting a new fashion of concrete shoes or 8-balls. Unfortunately, my hands failed their eye test and I promptly smashed into a wall, fell over backwards and landed on something hard and metallic. what we h… Oh, now we have a failure to communicate. As I blacked out again (how can you black out in pitch darkness?) I was left with the thought that maybe this wasn’t Hell after all (clever, hey?)

cutesy, occasionally clever, if not particularly special. no blaring flaws or deviations from the style you've established.

I awoke with vision, and with vision came clarity. Illuminated in daylight, the room was as foreign, maybe even more, than it had been last night (or was it two nights ago? God knows how long I’d been out). Sometime during my unconsciousness I had rolled off of the CD played, which I had managed to smash quite well, and now lay on my side in the middle of a cold and clinical room. Daylight was beating its way through a broken window now covered thick with vines, casting bizarre shadows across the floor. The room was bare except for a table a five cylinders standing side to side along the back wall. All were full except one. I’m sure I must have screamed when I realised that there were bodies floating in the cylinders. My heart somewhere between my brain and my spleen, I stumbled to my feet and look around wildly for a door. Finding it only made it a whole lot worse. CRYOGENIC FACILITY – ROOM 6B. I wonder if it’s natural to pass out so many times a day.

an ending which makes the the rest of the piece a bit more interesting, the thoughts of the cryogenically-frozen aren't often considered, so that was nice. aside from that, this is just scene setting, that i'm assuming will be elaborated on in later pieces. the language was decent, thought not particularly poetic or enthrallilng.




so we'll just get down to it then, this sounds like something i would write when i was first starting out and i wanted to lay down something "abstract" and "edgy", but it seems your problem, much like mine was, is that you lack the language and fully-structured concepts to make this really captivating. (i shied away from writing stuff like this because i never thought i'd have the skill to really make it how i wanted it, hopefully you'll carry on and have better luck.) i'm going to have to agree with jamie about this just being a little immature. that being said, it's certainly not without it's bright spots though, it's obvious that you effortlessly avoid cliches and to me nothing is more important in writing than fresh ideas or new spins on old ideas. your attempts to manipulate words and make pretty phrases didn't go unnoticed either, i expect that as long as you continue to write and utilize metaphorical language and imagery, that your command of language will increase greatly. anyway, this piece is full of potential, and you seem to be on your way to realizing it. keep at it, my man.
#13
You started with excellent contrast between the character and his situation but half way through you lost the sense of irony that would have made this an EXCELLENT short story... it's a great idea, and fairly well written.. it just lacks continuity.. roll it around a bit long in your head.. write it out a few more times.. i'm convinced of this story's potential
#14
"I knew that I had died and gone to hell" L1
felt, much better to me, to be "I'd" instead of "I had"
Also, should Hell not be capitalized?


"Now I’m confused and ****ing pissed off. Oh, and sore."
Oh and sore didn't flow very well

"but I still have my sense of humour. Yay me."
"yay me" annoyed me, as it allowed me to judge your age/maturity. Just think about the kind of people who say "yay me". The same people who say "=] rofl <3 RaNdOm! HUGGG!"
Sorry.
The parenthesis also allow me to see you, its an insight, but you still control it to an extent that it works.

"I had rolled off of the CD played" L3 final stanza
Typo?

I enjoyed it, but I'm really not sure about it, so I'd like to read more!
Last edited by ginjaninja at Dec 1, 2008,
#15
i think the mistake some people are making is that you are reading this as prose, which it's not. This i snot meant to be poetic. This is storywriting, dirty, rough storywriting. And the "yay me" is sardonic, not immature.
#16
I'll probably get back here, Kyle. But I'll try to give you an idea.

As a whole, I didn't like it, mainly because there were plenty repetitions of stuff like "I was whatever, or at least I thought I was". That annoyed me a bit. The Civil War thing didn't, I liked every intervention of it. The swearing got exagerating after a while, and the story itself kind of went nowhere, even tough there were several great phrases in it like "what we have here… Is a ****ing huge headache.", but overall it didn't click me. Sorry mate.
#17
Quote by kdownes
i think the mistake some people are making is that you are reading this as prose, which it's not. This i snot meant to be poetic. This is storywriting, dirty, rough storywriting. And the "yay me" is sardonic, not immature.


Prose just means writing like this, how I am now, how you are in your post.

No one is suggesting anything poetic. Mostly structural, important to narrative, and style of delivery.

You're being incredibly defensive. I know we're only a bunch of dudes on a forum, but still. Little arrogance is slipping into your posts. You're better off without it.
Last edited by Jammydude44 at Dec 1, 2008,
#18
Is this about getting sloshed? I bloody love it if it is!

I don't know whether or not I should explain myself because of how precarious my opinions are balanced.

What do you reckon, Alex...?

#19
Sorry if i sounded defensive, it wasn't my intention. I was just having trouble understanding where you guys were coming from but I've got my head around it now. And Dan, this is not about getting sloshed.
#20
Quote by kdownes
i think the mistake some people are making is that you are reading this as prose, which it's not. This i snot meant to be poetic. This is storywriting, dirty, rough storywriting. And the "yay me" is sardonic, not immature.


i considered the nature of the "yay me" phrase when i initially read over and criticized it, but i decided to go with what was my first impression of it. it's probably for the best to remove it anyway, because you can't translate the tone in which something is said from pure text so it's easy to see it as an immature exclamation rather than a cynical musing. also, i understand this is a story, not a poem, but what's a story without some colorful language and pretty words to give it a soul? not to mention if we strip this down to pure plot criticism then there's not a lot to consider as this is a rather brief exposition without much advancing of the plot aside from the last stanza.

Quote by AngryGoldfish
Is this about getting sloshed? I bloody love it if it is!

I don't know whether or not I should explain myself because of how precarious my opinions are balanced.

What do you reckon, Alex...?



what a lush.

i reckon if there's ever an s&l meet-up it'll be at an aa meeting.
#21
it didn't read like a fully connected piece for me; it was too long, and the way it was broken into strange stream-of-consciousness bits made me want to skim it more than fully appreciate it. this was a problem, since i actually did love it once i read it. in short, felt more like a short story than anything else.

the ending was a nice twist, however.
⚑⚑⚑⚑⚑
#23
If hell is a dark hole with GnR I'm sooo ****in there dude! Heh, well I already am. And I love it!

This is great so far. Only think I didn't really like is the guy seemed to complain a tad too much. We get he's in pain. I'll get to part 2 shortly.

(And I'm not aware if you already know this but "what we've had here..." is a clip from the movie Cool Hand Luke w/ Paul Newman. Sweet movie.)