The first piece i've posted in a while. I really tried to make it as vivid as possible. C4C


The lake was as smooth as glass. The sun slowly creeping above the horizon. The soft voices of the forest spoke to him in a language that he had forgotten many years before. The scent of an early morning rain and a few strips of sizzling bacon lingered in the air. The stones surrounding the campfire still felt warm against the palm of his hand. The evening had been quite pleasant with the embers blazing into the black sky above but in the small canvas tent it had been frightfully cold. He sat on the damp log while he sipped his coffee and chewed his bacon. Reflecting on the faint memorys of the sanctuary that he was now returning to.
The wildlife had been restored to it's original state, with minor traces of human inhabitance. Some would say "overgrown" but in his mind, it was the way it was intended to be. Taking a few steps over towards the edge of the lake, he could see Camp Forester and of course Camp Pioneer straight across the water. If he squinted his old eyes, he could just see the young scouts jumping off the dock, swiming to the ladder and running through the brisk air to do it again. He remembered waking up early to swim before breakfast. The only thing in his mind after getting out of the water was the hot chocolate that warmly greeted him on the trip back to the campsite. He stood on the waters edge for several minutes.........absorbing his surroundings. His home away from home. No, the only place he could truly call home.
It was getting to be time to leave. So he packed up his bag, scattered his ashes and left. Not a trace of his prescence was left, except for the memories which would eventually fade.
But the principles that he'd been taught would be passed on forever.
Last edited by muel333 at Sep 9, 2009,
Hey, haven't seen you around for a couple months.

I'll get back to this tomorrow when I have time. Don't mean to keep you waiting, but I really don't have time to do a crit right now.

Le Blackdot.
Today I feel electric grey
I hope tomorrow, neon black
As a former boy scout, the concept of this has a special place in my heart, and I know exactly where you're coming from. This past spring, I went hiking in the mountains I frequented often then, and I felt a very strong sense of home amongst them.

As a whole, the piece is good - and as vivid as you were trying for, I imagine, but I think you may have been trying just a little too hard. Instead of commenting on every single piece of the environment when you're describing something, trying picking out a few important parts and fly off the handle with ideas from there, or take the whole scene in without so much separation between its individual parts. What you've done works here, but just for the future.

"of course" does not belong, especially with regard to specific places or things. As a reader, I have no idea that Camp Forester is anywhere near Camp Pioneer, and the reader doesn't want to be made to feel stupid by the person whose work he can put down and ignore without a second thought.

Your dot dot dot dot dots work more at making the piece look visually obnoxious than they do portraying a sense of deep thought and resolve. A paragraph space would do just fine here.

The immediate contrast of old and young is rather immature - we've got the point, we know he's old, and we know they're young. A bit of creativity could be used here to show the flashback, or the scene, depending on how the reader wants to interpret it. Take advantage of this opportunity to grab me, and do not let go.

He. But. If. He. The. He. The. Some. Fastest way to lose someone's attention is to repeat an action over and over and over and over and over and over and over again. Start one more sentence with THE and I'm putting the bloody book down, he says. The beauty of the natural world is at your disposal, my friend, so use it.

One thing that may help with this (not that I want to do your work for you) is to try things from a different perspective. Instead of being the all-knowing narrator, as we've learned perhaps too well from the bible and other pompous works, try some character switching. Write this same story from the point of view of the squirrel sitting in the tree above the man, or the scout with the binoculars looking at the man from across the lake. You never know what you might see in him.

So, it's really good, but a bit dull in creativity. Shake it up a bit, see what you come up with.
Thanks a lot, your suggestions were quite helpful. I'm a boyscout too, this was actually about the boyscout camp I go to in the summer, Camp Massawepie in NY. I really liked the idea about other view points too. It seems like an interesting idea. I'm revising this piece by piece and might repost but i'm not sure yet. I really want this one to turn out well. Thanks
Last edited by muel333 at Sep 9, 2009,