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Writing Challenges Chronicles Writing Challenges including the popular '75 word challenge' and the new '300 word challenge'.

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Old 29th January 2012, 10:08 PM   #241 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

I definitely want to jump in on the opportunity to get some criticism, as it was my first challenge.

Thanks in advance to any criticisms!

Wagon Train to the Stars


"What lies beneath the soul of a man, where none but angels see? What trials reveal the inner self, what pain will set it free?"

In my youth I trekked through the galaxy, searching. Never before had I seen such barbarism, never again will I see such beauty. My search was endless, impossible. I saw the birth of stars, the death of planets. I found my answer where man began; at my journey’s end.
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Old 29th January 2012, 10:49 PM   #242 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

I really liked this one, Abucierre. I thought the initial quote used up a lot of your limited word count which left you with a really small amount for the main section, and I would have liked for eg to know what sort of barbairsm you'd seen. it reminded me of the Rutger Hauer line in Bladerunner.

And the title was very good, for someone who struggles with titles it was fab.
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Old 30th January 2012, 12:12 AM   #243 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlcubierreWarp View Post
I definitely want to jump in on the opportunity to get some criticism, as it was my first challenge.

Thanks in advance to any criticisms!

Wagon Train to the Stars


"What lies beneath the soul of a man, where none but angels see? What trials reveal the inner self, what pain will set it free?"

In my youth I trekked through the galaxy, searching. Never before had I seen such barbarism, never again will I see such beauty. My search was endless, impossible. I saw the birth of stars, the death of planets. I found my answer where man began; at my journey’s end.
For me, although the writing was good, it fell down on the requirement that entries should tell a story.
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Old 30th January 2012, 02:36 AM   #244 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

Yes, for me it didn't seem to be a story -- although actually it was more like too broad a story. Condensing the history of the universe into 75 words is very ambitious!

The first line was really terrific, but it did take a lot of real estate; I'd probably try that in a 300-word story, but not in a 75-word one.
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Old 30th January 2012, 02:43 AM   #245 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

I'm going to go ahead and throw mine on here to, just for a little feedback. I appreciate all of the special mentions from everyone, but I would really like to improve my 75 word skills. I have a little trouble with titles as well, although I believe my main issue is my grammar.

Love's Curse


The cowboy held his ground, hand gripping the Colt that rest in its holster. His wife’s grave lay before him, tombstone wishing her peace after life.

I can’t, I love her.

The loose earth above her heaves up and down with the rhythm of a heartbeat. A gash opens in the ground. Bony fingers, void of flesh, reach out gropingly. She could infect others. He has no choice.

Your wife’s dead cowboy, pull the trigger.
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Old 30th January 2012, 04:20 AM   #246 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

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Originally Posted by Grizzgreen711 View Post
Love's Curse




The cowboy held his ground, hand gripping the Colt that rest in its holster. His wife’s grave lay before him, tombstone wishing her peace after life.

I can’t, I love her.

The loose earth above her heaves up and down with the rhythm of a heartbeat. A gash opens in the ground. Bony fingers, void of flesh, reach out gropingly. She could infect others. He has no choice.

Your wife’s dead cowboy, pull the trigger.
You've got two different tenses going on here: the first paragraph is past tense and then it switches to present tense for the rest. Considering the urgency of the action, I would probably go with present tense for the whole thing.

The cowboy holds his ground, hand gripping the Colt that rests (previous version would have been "rested") in its holster. His wife's grave lies before him, tombstone wishing her peace after life.

I can't, I love her. ("I can't -- I love her." Or "I can't; I love her.")

The loose earth covering her heaves up and down with the rhythm of a (her?) heartbeat. A gash opens in the ground. Bony fingers, void of flesh, reach out gropingly. (Not sure about "gropingly", and would they be fleshless already?) She could infect others; he has no choice.

Your wife's dead, cowboy. Pull the trigger.
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Old 30th January 2012, 10:41 AM   #247 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

Grizzgreen, I thought this was a great idea, well implemented. It was just that word 'rest' in the first sentence that jarred and spoilt it for me. I don't know if you did, but perhaps if you had run the story past a friend or family member, before posting, they would have spotted it.

Sometimes we make spelling mistakes as we type and even when we read a piece back to ourselves we read what we think we have written not what we actually did. This may have been the case here.
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Old 30th January 2012, 11:50 AM   #248 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

Just a general point about about my entry for January. I took a risk with the word 'IKEA'. I'd done some research and found that IKEA had branches in the USA and (I think) Australia, so I was hoping that readers wouldn't be entirely mystified. Did 'IKEA' confuse the story for anyone?
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Old 30th January 2012, 12:34 PM   #249 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

You were risking some suggestions regarding the presence of a loose screw or too....



I guess that those who were unaware of the company could have Googled or Wiki'd the acronym.


As for mine (), I do wonder how many people knew of the significance of the first two characters' names (or, if not, were willing to look them up, probably a harder task than a search for IKEA).
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Old 30th January 2012, 12:49 PM   #250 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

No not confused despite not having one within five hours drive.
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Old 30th January 2012, 06:19 PM   #251 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

I was good with IKEA, though I've never seen one -- I know what they are, anyway.

Ursa, I was even more totally lost than usual on yours this time, and couldn't even make anything out of the names!
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Old 30th January 2012, 06:36 PM   #252 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

Ursa, I know Tharg from 2000AD, IF that's the Tharg of your story, but the other two names threw me. I even looked up Artemus, but I'm afraid it eluded me. I found a link to Mark Twain, but it still left me clueless (not a unique occurrence).
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Old 30th January 2012, 06:48 PM   #253 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

To be fair, TDZ, my story was simply a string of puns and plays on words. (Yes, I was that short of inspiration, with less than two hours left to come up with something.)

The characters, Artemus (Gordon) and (James) West were the protagonists in the TV series, The Wild Wild West, which was an early weird western, weird in the sense that it was inspired by James Bond and his many gadgets, some of them beyond nineteenth century, and even twenty-first century, science and technology.

(By the way, De Gap, and his mine, merely constitute an attempt to allude to the London Underground signs and announcements, Mind the Gap, at stations on sharp curves.)

The word, grass, is being used with its meaning of informant.

The inspiration, such as it was, was the first word, Itzawl (= it's all), used as a humorous name for mines on many model railroads and railways. (You may be seeing a one-track mind in operation here. )


So, all in all, you didn't miss anything important.



EDIT: I used Tharg because it was the first name that popped into my head. (Unless it was in Sly's Judge Dredd film, there's no way that I would know it from 2000AD.) Oh, and: Mark Twain?
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Old 30th January 2012, 07:06 PM   #254 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

Arrrgh! No wonder my head hurt!

I don't feel so bad, then -- I am aware of The Wild Wild West but have never seen it (although we do have a new channel that says it has it sometimes -- the only problem there is that the channel guide lies a lot so it's hard to predict the actual airing times). I also know nothing of London Underground or any other railway signs, and didn't know "grass" had a meaning of informant.

That's probably a good summary of my confusion.
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Old 30th January 2012, 07:15 PM   #255 (permalink)
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Re: Improving our 75 Word Stories -- READ FIRST POST

I didn't get all the references, but I really enjoyed it; i think I had it shortlisted.




I must be listening to too many of Ursa's puns..... I'm getting immune.
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