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Jun 27, 2013
Nap Ghost

Chairchucker, GenJoe, Ninjalicious, Ironic Twist, sparksbloom and QuoProQuid have not dared to venture into the fields of love. If you get your stories up soon enough, I may take them into consideration for judging.

DreamingofRoses fucked around with this message at 06:06 on Feb 5, 2018


Fuschia tude
Dec 26, 2004


Vast fudging good juggling, iirc

Nov 14, 2006

to ride eternal, shiny and chrome


lol whoops

Or Whatever The Opposite is of a Parent Trap 1251 words

Matt’s parents were ruining his life.

Technically Ms Jones wasn’t his mum yet, but she would be in two months, and that’s what was ruining his life.

“They already had a shot,” said Suki, his girlfriend, although that detail would soon be cast into doubt. “They stuffed up two marriages, that’s their shot, they should do the decent thing and retire from love forever.”

“You don’t really mean that,” he said.

She nodded. “Yeah, you’re right. But they definitely shouldn’t marry each other.”

Matt shrugged. “Is it really that big a deal?”

She frowned. “I know it shouldn’t be, but it’s just weird.” He leaned in to kiss her, and she leaned away. “Sorry,” she said, “that’s a bit weird for me right now as well. You’re going to be my brother in two months.”

“C’mon,” he said. “That doesn’t really count.”

Suki stood up and shook her head. “Sorry, this feels wrong. I don’t think I can do this.” And she walked to her car and drove away.


Matt knew what he had to do.

It had taken him a good solid hour of crying on his bed while listening to My Chemical Romance on repeat, but he’d figured out what must be done. He had to parent trap his parents.

Not his parents. Just his dad, and Suki’s mum. He had to parent and girlfriend’s parent trap them. Actually, it was easier to just call it parent trapping. Yes. He had to parent trap them.

Except, like, in reverse.

His opportunity came sooner than he expected.

“Hey honey, what’s up?” said Ms Jones.

“Oh, hey Ms Jones. Not much.”

“Please,” she said, “call me Mum. Have you been crying, Matt?”

Matt shook his head. “Allergies. Sorry, I don’t think I can call you Mum.”

Ms Jones smiled. “Well, that’s understandable, this is all very new, but I hope in the leadup to the wedding we can get to know each other better. I know you and your father are very close, so it’s important to me that you and I have a good relationship. You and Suki, too. I think once you get to know your new sister, you two will really hit it off.”

“I mean, she’s not really my sister,” said Matt.

“Well, all right, stepsister, but your father and I would love it if you got along just as well as if you were really brother and sister.”

Matt frowned and changed the subject. “So where is Dad, anyway?”

“He’s still at work,” she said. “I wanted to take the opportunity to get to know you better. Tell me about yourself. Any special woman in your life?”

Matt chuckled without smiling. “Just Mum, I guess.”

“Ah yes,” said Ms Jones, “I should get to know her as well at some point. It might be awkward, but I can’t pretend she doesn’t exist. Your father speaks well of her, I sometimes wonder why they weren’t able to make it work.”

Matt knew an opportunity when it presented itself. “Oh, I think Mum just got sick of the whole swinging scene.”

She frowned. “Swinging? What do you mean?”

“Oh, whoops,” said Matt. “Sorry, I’ve probably said too much. I know Dad probably would’ve preferred you hear that from him.”

“Excuse me,” she said, “I think your father and I need to have a chat.”


Not long later, Suki called him.

“Are you parent trapping them?” she asked.


“Our parents,” she said. “My mum just told me about your conversation. Well, not all about it.”

“Don’t call them ‘our parents’,” he said. “It’s your mum, and my dad. If you call them ‘our parents’, it’s like they’re already married, and we’re brother and sister, which totally isn’t going to happen, because yes, I am totally parent trapping them, and I’m pretty sure it’s working.”

“Wouldn’t count on it,” said Suki. “Mum’s actually getting pretty excited. She’s saying something about how she had reservations at first, but the more she thought about it, the more she’s keen on your dad’s ‘lifestyle’, whatever that means. What did you tell her?”

“Oh, gross,” said Matt. “This was definitely not the plan.”

“Listen,” said Suki, “I’m touched that you would try to ruin a wedding on my account, but my mum’s happy, and I never see her this happy, so you need to lay off, all right?”

Matt nodded, then realized she couldn’t see him, and quietly said, “All right.”


“Hey, Dad. What’s happening?”

It was only one month to the wedding, and Matt had resigned himself to the fate of Suki being his stepsister. His gorgeous stepsister, who had a smile that lit up the room, and… arggggh!

His dad sadly shook his head. “Looks like this wedding’s over before it’s begun.”

Matt frowned. “What do you mean?”

His dad shrugged. “She said she wasn’t ready for this, and that she’s not sure about us, either. She’s gone for a trip overseas to ‘find herself’ or whatever, I don’t know.”

“Man, sorry to hear that, Dad,” said Matt.

“Thanks,” he said. “Anyway, I’ve gotta go, I’ve got a work trip for the next few weeks.”


Matt called Suki as soon as his dad had left. “I promise this wasn’t me.”

“Yeah, I know,” said Suki. “That’s Mum for you.” She paused. “I miss you, by the way.”

“I miss you too,” said Matt.

“Do you want to catch up or something? Nothing too serious, just hanging out.”

“Sure,” said Matt. “Dad’s left me the house to myself; if you want to come over some time, I could cook you dinner.”

“Hmm,” she said, “I’ll see when I’m free.”


A few hours later, and several kilometres away, Matt’s dad and Suki’s mum sat on a plane next to each other. “You really shouldn’t read your daughter’s diary, though,” he said.

She laughed. “Good thing I did, though.”

He nodded. “Yeah. Strange neither of them ever told us, but I guess it would’ve felt weird after the announcement.”

She shook her head. “I can’t believe your son tried to parent trap us for our daughter. That’s so romantic.”

“Tried to what?”

“Parent trap. You know, like the movie?”

He shook his head. “No idea what you’re talking about.”

“Oh, this is unacceptable,” she said. “You’ve got some education coming your way, Mr. As soon as we’ve finished eloping, that is.”


A few hours later and more kilometres away, the two of them were in Prague, watching The Parent Trap in their marital bed. The Hayley Mills version, of course, although they planned to follow up with the Lindsay Lohan version, for comparison. “This really is a perfect honeymoon,” she said. “It’s a shame we’ll have to hide this from the kids for, well, probably as long as their relationship lasts.”

He smiled. “Adds to the excitement, though, doesn’t it? The thrill of sneaking out at night for an illicit tryst with my wife without letting the kids figure it out, has a certain allure.”

She hugged him and smiled. “That does sound exciting. Maybe if we’re lucky, they’ll get married, and we’ll get to pretend not to be married at their wedding, maybe sneak out to meet each other at intermission.”

He laughed and kissed her, and then got up and got the DVD for the second film.


And several thousand kilometres away, Matt and his stepsister made out on the couch of his dad’s – and her stepdad’s - house.

Oct 23, 2010

Legit Cyberpunk

Interprompt: the pirate who fell in love with the mermaid or vice versa
300 words

Sep 21, 2017

Horse Facts

True and Interesting Facts about Horse

"Mmmm, fishy," said the pirate, grinning.

Oct 17, 2012

Hullabalooza '96
Easily Depressed
Teenagers Edition

Weird Fish-tishes

"Arrr. None of ye get it," Captain Pegwood drawled irritably, his fingers brushing along his girlfriend's side at the transition from soft pale skin to scaly blue. She looked enough like their masthead to make even the bilge rats share side glances.

"But," First Mate Winslow questioned, "if she's yer lover, then how do ye..."

Marine giggled, the sound more like a burble. Her tail tip flicked. "What we do together, human, doesn't need the 'fish' part on top. Be a little more creative."

All twenty-eight crew members of the Sea Ribbons shivered down to their core of their timbers.

Nov 14, 2006

to ride eternal, shiny and chrome


Some crits kinda, with excerpts from IRC of my thoughts on these

In which my thoughts get fewer and fewer as I get nearer the end of the list of stories

Ninjalicious - Why Try Harder

Chairchucker> Judgechat: Why Try Harder's first line makes me not want to read the rest
Chairchucker> I could only bring myself to read the first two lines of Why Try Harder so far
<Chairchucker> It feels bad
<Chairchucker> Man I did not dig that story at all
<Chairchucker> It was super bad
<Chairchucker> Tense changes, telling instead of showing
Chairchucker> It's trying to do some conversational fun thing and it's bad

This was very bad and kind of lucky not to lose.


Anyway, moving onto the things that actually count in the judging of stories, "Why try harder is my motto but certainly not a good plan to live by" is a very week opening line and one that made me not want to continue reading. SHOW DON'T TELL.

Your second line is unwieldy and bad and also tells us almost the entire prompt.

Your third line/paragraph whatever TENSE CHANGE what the hell don't do that. Also too long a sentence.

Fourth paragraph and my eyes are bouncing off of everything because this paragraph sucks so much. More tense changes and a lot of stuff happening that I don't get and don't care about.


Way too much 'oh ho I'm so wacky' self awareness, oh I'm eating cheesewine or whatever it is how whimsical.

Ugh I'm not going to bother wading bit by bit through the rest of the story. The only reason I picked this one over the eventual loser was because at least in this one things sort of happened, even if reading about them sucked.

My Last Day - Unfunny Poster

<Chairchucker> The Last Day has a bad first line too, imo
<Chairchucker> OK this story seems bad, two paragraphs in
<Chairchucker> Less bad
<Chairchucker> But bad
<Chairchucker> WTF the second story sucks
<Chairchucker> In some ways worse than the first
<Chairchucker> it just sort of ends

It's been covered better by BadSeafood, but the main problem with this story is as follows:

The story is 'nothing happens, then I accidentally barf on and knock out a gross guy, and then I tell the rest of the story of me escaping or whatever almost as an afterthought. If the story started with the protagonist in a room with an unconscious body and a bunch of money, it would probably have sucked less.

In many ways a better told story than the previous, it's just that the previous awful story has the slight advantage of things actually happening in it.

Make something actually happen in your stories and you won't lose to the guy with the horrible run on sentences and constant tense changes.

Exmond - A Trip Down Memory Lane

<Chairchucker> OK number 3 is dumb and impenetrable but I would place it higher than the first two
<Chairchucker> It tries to do some interesting things and fails because the writer is bad
<Chairchucker> But that's better imo
<Chairchucker> two memory thieves teach an old woman and themselves a valuable lesson I think
<Chairchucker> Betty is one of the thief/scientists

This was too impenetrable and confusing. We judges eventually between us kind of hashed out what was going on, but didn't really feel like it was worth the effort in the end.

Through a Glass, Darkly - Deltasquid

<Chairchucker> Eiffel Tower is fun, altho it might benefit from being immediately after those 3
<Chairchucker> Some annoying errors, too
<Chairchucker> Still
<Chairchucker> BEST SO FAR

Is that a Phillip K Dick ref or whatever? Anyway. This story benefited a lot from being the first story that was not bad. Fun premise, fun action, likeable characters. GJ.

Antivehicular - The Soft Touch

<Chairchucker> I think The Soft Touch is... better? But less fun. And the numbers thing annoyed me
<Chairchucker> I dunno why
<Chairchucker> I think I'd still have it above Eiffel Tower, slightly.

This was kinda fun, but in a more understated way than the previous one. I didn't like the '#' in text, it looked weird. Numbering was weird in general - one quick note, usually smaller numbers will get written out instead of just using the number's symbol. (Like, five instead of 5) That detracted from it a bit for me.

Word of God - Fuschia Tude

<Chairchucker> Word of God is
<Chairchucker> I dunno
<Chairchucker> too easy
<Chairchucker> I have a pass so I get in
<Chairchucker> I have dirt on you so you do what I say
<Chairchucker> It's got some interesting ideas but not much story imo
<Chairchucker> Yeah, felt like he walked around announcing the robbery, too

As Seafood mentioned, all of the 'action' in this one appears to have happened 'before'. Also, the use of the flash rules was kinda weak imo. His pacifism doesn't at any point come up in the narrative. He announces something vague to some people outside the place he robs.

The Adventures of Colin Flame: Heiress on the High Seas - sandnavyguy

<Chairchucker> OK, time for Colin Flame
<Chairchucker> OK so piratey story
<Chairchucker> Too much telling instead of showing
<Chairchucker> In the conversations
<Chairchucker> ok that one's kind of
<Chairchucker> Decent story, bad writing?
<Chairchucker> Also the deus ex machina moment is badly explained
<Chairchucker> Swashbuckling stories should be encouraged but also so should better writing
<Chairchucker> I dunno
<Chairchucker> it doesn't explain it well

I kinda discussed this with you on IRC as well, but essentially:

You get points for it being swashbuckling goodness, you lose points for a couple things but MOSTLY telling instead of showing. Conversations are more interesting than being told a conversation happened. Show us the conversations. Another thing that really didn't work for me was the Deus Ex Machina moment where Colin is all like 'aha we're saved' and then it cuts to him swimming somewhere and we're like wait what is the thing that he saw what happened here what what what

I like the bit at the end where you realise he kept the fairly expensive earrings, tho.

A Heap of Trouble - apophenium

<Chairchucker> "We sat under under the lone palm tree"
<Chairchucker> under under
<Chairchucker> OK so
<Chairchucker> I like A Heap of Trouble
<Chairchucker> It is in some ways a bit anticlimactic tho
<Chairchucker> But it's nice imo

'nice' is the best way to describe this one imo. Like, it's not a spectacular story, but the characters are pretty likeable, the setting is interesting, I dunno it's just nice. gj, thx.

May Treasure Fill Your Home (金玉满堂)

<Chairchucker> May Treasure Fill Your Home is good imo
<Chairchucker> Possibly my fav so far

Although (SPOILERS) this didn't end up being my favourite, it did quite a lot that I liked, including a likeable protag, fun and good natured criminal activity, and the romantic note on the end. Hence why it was my fav. up to this point.

Simple Pleasures. - Crain


<Chairchucker> Simple Pleasures more like bad dialogue attributions
<Chairchucker> and tense changes
<Chairchucker> Simple Pleasures isn't good but isn't bad enough to join those first two

There were many things that should've been good about this story. I mean, there were a couple of things that were good, most notably the fact that it was attempting to be a fun caper, and the 'twist' where with all the guy's abilities, he impressed the kid with that 'my thumb is missing' or whatever trick. A lot of what was written was hard to visualise, from the initial throw of the protags, to most of Bertrand's fighting. Bertrand's whole section I didn't really dig TBH.

Queen of Diamonds - curlingiron

<Chairchucker> Ah Queen of Diamonds you are so annoying and anticlimactic but also kind of good

Too short, too much 'nothing happening', but it was well told and the little twist ending kind of worked even though it left the ending feeling a little flat.

Sands of San Christo Cor - Djeser

<Chairchucker> Sands of San christo cor is fun too

I liked this, it was fun and cool. As Seafood mentioned, it was kinda neat that his ARCHNEMESIS kinda accidentally almost thwarted his plan, but it was kind of annoying that he just kinda danced past a person pointing a gun at him, and also (and this is probs just me tbh) I was kinda 'shipping' (as the kids says) the protag + sorta antag romance there and was a bit disappointed nothing came of it, OH WELL

Alternates - crabrock

<Chairchucker> There's nothing explicitly wrong with Alternates but
<Chairchucker> I dunno

I still dunno. I didn't really care for it. Didn't see enough difference between the POV version of the protag and his 'evil' self. The 'twist' if it was meant to be that was a little bit obvious. Just felt a little bit too cynical or something I dunno.

CascadeBeta - Speed Drop

<Chairchucker> Speed Drop has an awkward as heck first para
<Chairchucker> Nah just one sentence actually
<Chairchucker> I thought I had heard a shatter I traded paint, I couldn’t be sure.
<Chairchucker> doesn't work for me

Probs missing a word or something?

<Chairchucker> I don't think it really follows the prompt
<Chairchucker> It feels like a clever 'aha it feels like a heist but actually he's just training' story
<Chairchucker> Which
<Chairchucker> imo is bad in the context of the propmt
<Chairchucker> oh wait it's prohibition or something I dunno
<Chairchucker> I don't really rate it

Bit too confusing, wasn't sure what was going on tbh.

Hawklad - Thaw

<Chairchucker> Thaw is p good but bad ending and some bad errors

There were things I liked about this. It was kinda fun, the distraction between the heist and the kids was good, the mayhem as the turkey fell was great, I liked the bit with the kangaroo suit as well.

I didn't really get the ending.

Hell Hath No Fury - Yoruichi

<Chairchucker> hell hath no fury seems a bit purple
<Chairchucker> Not wild about Hell Hath no Fury the ending doesn't make much sense

The action sequence at the ending was a bit unclear to me, was the main problem.

Gloria Tuesday in: Last Train to Russia - Thranguy

I didn't have any IRC thoughts on this one which may be a good sign I guess.

I liked the morse code bit, and the actiony bit. Also liked Gloria's negotiation techniques at the start, that was kinda amusing.

The Day Before Sunday - GenJoe

<Chairchucker> I like The Day Before Sunday a fair bit
<Chairchucker> I like the actual writing the most of any story so far

I see from Seafood's crits that he didn't care for this one, which I totally get because not much happens, but I still really dug the writing style. So. Only substantial advice I have to improve on at this stage is 'have more story'.

The Midas Blade - Dr. Kloctopussy

Full disclosure: this was my favourite and vote for winner. The caper was fun, especially the revenge aspect. The banter between mother and daughter, particularly involving the centaur, was awesome. The only thing I didn't like was that at the end, the sentence " After all, it’s always good to have a man whose willing to chase after you" used the wrong "who's". So GJ, more stories like this pls.

Apr 12, 2006
Glub glub
200 words

"Glub glub," Richard Parker said.

He was a pirate by trade. As such, he couldn't swim but he could fall in love. He could also drown and was doing so when he saw her. Her being a mermaid. She was very beautiful and, despite his predicament, he couldn't help but imagine a romantic affair with her. Richard's ship, cannonballed and scuttled by boarders, was sinking into the sea behind him.

"Glub glub," Richard Parker said.

"Sweet seas," she said. "You're handsome."

"Glub glub."

"You different from all the other mermen, aren't you? I can tell."

"Glub glub."

"I know this is strange, it's sudden, but I can't help but imagine a romantic affair with you."

"Glub glub."

Richard Parker died from an inhalation of water. After a moment, the mermaid mated with and then devoured his corpse because mermaids are loving horrifying.

Jun 27, 2007

I had a beer once with Stephen Miller and now I like him.

I also tried to ban someone from a Discord for pointing out what an unrelenting shithead I am! I'm even dumb enough to think it worked!
Arts and Crafts on the high Seas.

37-ish words

"Aye, that's, that, th-That's a mermaid! Yes. You, me mate, are looking at a real mermaid!" The captain fumbled out from behind the sheets he had pulled up.

"Right-o, but...are you done with the sewing kit?"

Feb 25, 2014
the pirate who fell in love with vice versa

there once was a pirate in love with vice versa. and he was like "wow i love you vice versa" which wasnt like a person's name or anything but the literal phrase vice versa.

and vice versa said nothing because it's just a phrase, but that's what the pirate loved about vice versa.

and so they went sailing through the ocean and sometimes people would go into the pirate's room and he'd be making out with the empty air and everyone thought the pirate who was in love with vice versa was a creepy weirdo.

Sham bam bamina!
Nov 6, 2012

ƨtupid cat

Chairchucker posted:

Is that a Phillip K Dick ref or whatever?
It's a Bible reference that Dick also made.

Fuschia tude
Dec 26, 2004


Chairchucker posted:

Some crits kinda, with excerpts from IRC of my thoughts on these

Thank you!

May 31, 2007

Writing is fun!
I am going to do LiveCrits, since it worked well last time. This will also be my second read of some drafts so huzza

Apr 10, 2012

by Jeffrey of YOSPOS

Exmond posted:

I am going to do LiveCrits, since it worked well last time. This will also be my second read of some drafts so huzza

Cheers. Definitely going to do a rewrite thanks to this feedback.

Mekchu fucked around with this message at 04:37 on Feb 6, 2018

Sep 14, 2007

to ride eternal, shiny and chrome

wth no judgment??? this place has really gone to the weeds

Oct 23, 2010

Legit Cyberpunk

BeefSupreme posted:

wth no judgment??? this place has really gone to the weeds

Fast judging is bad judging, now :shobon:

Oct 23, 2010

Legit Cyberpunk

Exmond posted:

I am going to do LiveCrits, since it worked well last time. This will also be my second read of some drafts so huzza

Real nice crittin.

Feb 22, 2010
Prompt: Laura and Shadow from American Gods

Untitled / Better Late Than Never

432 Words

Deep in the black and gray of a full moon with only the periodic street light to illuminate his walk. Shadow lumbered in an angry stupor, visions of his friend's and wifes twin betrayals burning into his heart, awakening a demigod's rage.

She had loved him had she not? She had sent letters and called almost every day when he was inside. He had avoided all the dark paths an inmate can take to get back to her. And how had she been repaying him the whole time?

With secret rendezvous with his best man, someone he treated as a blood brother.

But now this the ultimate betrayal of brotherhood.

Shadow was in silent grief, he did not see the next three steps his eyes watery with emotion.

How could he have been so blind. But of course this is the critical point, those who feel the deepest are the ones capable of the deepest pain of betrayal from the one they love.

The duality of wo/manity! He raged at the thought, he had been so stricken with emotion on the plane ride he hadn't thought twice of the mystical Mr Wednesday's motives in offering him a vague-and-certainly-more-than-he-had-bargained-for "job". But that wasn't on his mind.

His left foot sunk into the ditch he was striding near and he stumbled. Turning an ankle almost, he caught himself clumsily.

The faint twinge of high pitch digital noise caught his attention momentarily. He paused, but then a faint wind blew, and his mind shook back to

Laura. Laura, Laura, Laura. Why Laura.

Was I not enough. Was my dick not big enough? I saw his on your phone, I shouldn't have looked.

Oh why.

As if the sheer emotional act wasn't enough, the emasculation too!

Oh how I loved you and thought you loved me but I guess I should have seen it coming.

I left you alone, the handcuffs on my wrists the last thing you saw of me. Our talks on the phone, I know you still loved me, you must have been lonely. How else. How else. Don't think about it. Don't think about it. Don't think Shadow.

The little voice in Shadows head spoke and spoke, his rational self comforting his emotional self. He strode onward, mindlessly down the dark path.

He barely noticed as the digital spider lept at his face and latched on, blasting his consciousness to another dimension.

He fell to his knees, kneeling upright in a prayer fit for the machine age as he trembled and finally fell.

The device had swallowed his head and mind.

Jan 23, 2004

college kids ain't shit

Fun Shoe
Here's some late crits that aren't very good.

The last of the yellow crits (week 269)

Basically had to go back and reread everything since it’s been so long.

Okua’s - Shared between us

Not sure if you chose to title your story incorrectly or if you just didn’t know better. I see no stylistic benefit. So maybe don’t do that.

Polish issues in the first paragraph confirm my suspicion about your titlte. Missing a pretty important comma after Olive. Makes it look like one of your characters names is Olive Munching.

Overall this feels well thought out and intended but not entirely well executed. I don’t think this needs to be as long as it is, and a lot of your problems seem to come in the form of unclear, and often unecessary blocking. Little things like “he brushed his teeth and smelled his breath,” add up and eat into your word count without accomplishing much.

My initial comments, for judging stated “Wanted to care more about these characters and their relationship.” I felt that way going through it again now. I have a decent idea of who they are but I want to have more reasons to root for or against them.

Magnificient7’s Sleep Song Somniloquy

Boy does this ending ruin any potential the story had. You take so long getting there and then bam all that poo poo happens in like 3 sentences. Overall, this wasn’t terribly memorable. The story reads relatively easily and you don’t have much in the way of technical problems but it’s all relatively flatley presented and objectively told from your narrator. Grief stories are tricky that way; I kinda like seeing more from characters and what’s going on with them when they’re processing heavy stuff.

Fuschia tude’s Dim Procession

Another baggy, and longwinded piece that’s hard to get too excited over. It’s largely objective, much like many of the other stories from this week and doesn’t really make much of a mark. Your characters have to show their feelings or attitudes more than they are. Not just for the sake of us caring about them, but about the stuff happening around them as well. My initial judging comment for this was ‘fine’ and that’s pretty much how I feel now. Do better than fine.

blue square’s A Crack Begins to Form

Your piece’s tone stood out. The overall positive feel was welcome. I didn’t have much to say about this one. Your prose was consistent and this had probably the best dialogue of the week. As a story, maybe a little underdeveloped and I think you probably could have edited this down to 80% of its current word count. But otherwise, a solid entry.

Benny Profane’s Passion Hides in Painted Smiles

Another good piece. Well deserving of an HM. I dug the structural shift. Of all of the stories this week that directly involved an actual play, this did that job the best. I’m also kind of a sucker for cruise ships in writing after I read that David Foster Wallace article so I might have been biased. Well done, regardless.

Fuschia tude
Dec 26, 2004


Chili posted:

Here's some late crits that aren't very good.


Exmond posted:

I am going to do LiveCrits, since it worked well last time. This will also be my second read of some drafts so huzza


May 31, 2007

Writing is fun!

Chili posted:

Here's some late crits that aren't very good.

All crits are good!

Oct 23, 2010

Legit Cyberpunk

So is judging but it has deserted us here is my judgment instead :itwaspoo:

Bad Seafood
Dec 10, 2010

If you must blink, do it now.
Don't sign your posts.

Jun 27, 2013
Nap Ghost
All right my wayward children, judgment has arrived. This week was certainly...something. Surprisingly (or maybe not), even with such a broad prompt, some of you managed to miss the point entirely. Most of you managed to hit the mark, although that may be me going soft. Full crits will be up by Sunday, but for now here is our:

Winner! Antivehicular with an endearing story that used its prompt to a unique end. The writing was emotive and made me feel for both Fengxia and Tsung-dao, and I have a very soft spot for sci-fi stories. A sad story with a sweet ending.

Honorable Mentions: Kaishai, Tyrannosaurus, and Sebmojo!

Kaishai- Your story about the Genius loci and a girl who can't stay falling in love while growing up together makes for a bittersweet story. The characters themselves were interesting (and the idea of a Genius loci being born into a human form that can grow up and go to school is fascinating) although I did find the chase to be a little unnecessary, it got the story where it needed to go for Annie to believe him.

Tyrannosaurus- A little creepy, sad, and sweet at the end. I know I gave you a tough prompt to work with to have even a minimally likable protagonist, and you did well with it. The idea of them relearning each other at the end is a very moving one.

Sebmojo- Your story was joyful, and I like that a lot. I love the catalog of librarian frowns and the possible start of a relationship through House of Leaves-style defacement of library books. It makes you wonder what else is going on in that guy's head and where in the world the relationship would go.

Dishonorable Mention: Unfunny poster - your story did not earn the angst it was trying to convey. There was a lot in the writing itself that could have been trimmed down or sharpened, and the characters lacked any defining characteristics beyond 'brave' or 'bright personality'. The relationship was set up but I did not feel enough investment with the characters and there was an awful lot of telling and not showing.

Loser: Fuschia Tude - I also gave you a tough prompt to work with to make the protagonists likable or interesting, as adultery is generally a great way to get a character hated. Unfortunately, your take on it didn't work so well for me. The connection between May and Darren wasn't really fleshed out, and the friendship between Darren and Sam suffers from the same deficit. This story might have fared a little better with a little more melodrama, or more development for the characters as individuals. As it stands currently it's just teenagers being teenagers which is realistic, but not terribly interesting which is the capital crime for this prompt.

DQ's: Chairchucker and Ninjalicious who submitted their stories three hours, and a day and a half after the deadline passed respectively. They are still better than GenJoe, Ironic Twist, sparksbloom and QuoProQuid who did not show up at all.

I cede the throne to you, Antivehicular.

Dec 30, 2011

I wanna sing one for the cars
That are right now headed silent down the highway
And it's dark and there is nobody driving And something has got to give

Thunderdome CCLXXXVIII: Standing Outside a Broken TDome With Flash Rules in My Hand

I've had the music of my adolescence on my mind lately, and for this week, I'd like to read about your musical nostalgia. Sign up with the name of your favorite song from when you were 13 (or 12, or 14, or whatever, as long as it's something from around there); that song becomes your prompt for the week. Use it as inspiration, however you feel fit. As your additional theme for the week, I'd like to read stories about the spaces between, whether literal or figurative. Get all liminal on me.

Unlike most music weeks, this week I'm not limiting each song choice to one writer; if all of you somehow had the same favorite song at 13, hell, you can all write about it. However, anyone who signs up with a song someone already picked will automatically receive a flash rule, which will be one of my personal favorite middle-school jamzzz. These will also be available upon request, if you're the kind of person who can't go without flash rules.

Standard song-week rules apply: don't just write fanfic of the song/rewrite the song's narrative, and don't just write about someone listening to/performing the song. Standard Dome rules also apply: no fanfiction, erotica, screeds, etc. Other than that, go nuts!

Word Count: 1250
Signup Deadline: 11:59 PM Eastern, Friday, February 9th
Submission Deadline: 11:59 PM Eastern, Sunday, February 11th

Judges: Antivehicular, Fuschia tude, and Bad Seafood

People Standing Around Awkwardly At The Social:
1. apophenium, "Go To Sleep" (Radiohead) :toxx:
2. CascadeBeta, "In the Presence of Enemies Pt. 1" (Dream Theater)
3. Thranguy, "West End Girls" (Pet Shop Boys)
4. flerp, "Swing Life Away" (Rise Against)
5. Jay W. Friks, "Pyramid Song" (Radiohead)
6. Unfunny Poster, "Regulate" (Warren G feat. Nate Dogg)
7. SurreptitiousMuffin, "Rumors of My Demise Have Been Greatly Exaggerated" (Rise Against) :toxx:
8. chili, "Original Prankster" (The Offspring)
9. curlingiron, "Everything You Want" (Vertical Horizon) :toxx:
10. Sham bam bamina!, "Comin' Back" (Crystal Method)
11. Ninjalicious, "Crystal Skull" (Mastodon) :toxx:
12. Benny Profane, "We Will All Go Together When We Go" (Tom Lehrer)
13. Ironic Twist, "Blurry" (Puddle of Mudd)
14. Djeser, "King Henry" (Steeleye Span)
15. sebmojo, "One of These Days" (Pink Floyd)
16. Fumblemouse, "Welcome to the Machine" (Pink Floyd)
17. spectres of autism, "Salad Days" (Minor Threat)
18. Yoruichi, "Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots (Part 1)" (The Flaming Lips)
19. Exmond, "Absolutely (Story of a Girl)" (Nine Days)
20. Obliterati, "Everywhere" (Michelle Branch)

Antivehicular fucked around with this message at 07:05 on Feb 10, 2018

Apr 14, 2009

Cry 'Mayhem!' and let slip the dogs of Wardlow.
In with Go to Sleep by Radiohead

Apr 14, 2009

Cry 'Mayhem!' and let slip the dogs of Wardlow.
Oh I'm gonna :toxx: as well since I bailed on the last music week

Feb 14, 2009

by Cyrano4747
In with In the Presence of Enemies Pt. 1 by Dream Theater.

Apr 21, 2010

Deceitful and black-hearted, perhaps we are. But we would never go against the Code. Well, perhaps for good reasons. But mostly never.
in with West End Girls by the Pet Shop Boys

Feb 25, 2014
in with swing life away by rise against

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Got Out.
Grimey Drawer
In with Pyramid Song by Radiohead

Apr 10, 2012

by Jeffrey of YOSPOS
In with Regulate by Warren G (feat. Nate Dogg).

Edit - got the song name wrong.

Mekchu fucked around with this message at 03:13 on Feb 7, 2018

Mar 21, 2010
Yeah I am in with a :toxx:

edit: oh I guess the song is gonna be Rumors of My Demise Have Been Greatly Exaggerated by Rise Against because I was one of those teenagers

SurreptitiousMuffin fucked around with this message at 03:44 on Feb 7, 2018

Jan 23, 2004

college kids ain't shit

Fun Shoe

Original Prankster, The Offspring

Dec 15, 2006

b l o o p

I am in (middle school still), and have never stopped listening to Everything You Want by Vertical Horizon.

(At least it wasn't :toxx:ic?)

Jan 23, 2004

college kids ain't shit

Fun Shoe
More bad crits from a bad man.

Week #257: No failing wizard week

No Fail/Wizard Week.

The Shape-Shifter’s Child

My notes for this were “pretty and succinct” and I largely stand by that. Your prose made this a joy to read and you didn’t waste any time accomplishing a good bit. In a less positive week this could’ve HM’d.

The Apprentice

A hot mess. This is absolutely loaded with passive voice, clunky prose. Your ending isn’t earned and not much is accomplished throughout the story. “He took a step forwards, as many do before the unknown, careful, slow; arms out, reaching, searching, testing.” There are just messy sentences strewn about the story like this that bog it down and make it difficult to digest and parse. Read your words out loud if you want them to sound better.

Impatient Oaths

Had this pegged as a DM on my first read and when I go through it now, I see why. The stakes aren’t here, and overall it’s a hard piece to follow. There are some blocking/clarity issues that need addressing and would likely have been handled with a few editing passes.


The abuse stuff in this hit hard but I think a fair bit of it was earned through sheer shock. Still, very strong story with a solid ending. Your imagery is good, it made me shudder and this is one of the few stories that I immediately remembered when I read the title. So hey, you made something memorable. That alone is an accomplishment.

Let the shadows reign

The strength of this piece was its clarity. A story about a somewhat complicated power that was made very easy to follow. I like how you played to your wizard’s weakness and made the story mostly about that. His victory felt earned because we saw him suffer. But otherwise, there wasn’t much here to compel me. Just kind of a middle of the road micro-story.


I didn’t go for this quite like my fellow co-judges did. I didn’t have it as a low down entry, but it just felt a little flowery and dispassionate to my ear. I think starting the story with the “didn’t” motif would have made it a bit more lyrical and heavy. Even if you took your third paragraph, which is just one line, and started the story that way, you would have intrigued me more. As it was, the opening paragraph just felt like a whole lot and made say out loud “oh boy, here we go”.

Wizardbro Subculture

A fun read, to be sure, and the voice in this is consistent, but that’s about it. It’s largely uneven and I didn’t care about much as I read this, I was just kind OK to be on the ride. A good thing for a td entry in a somewhat heavy week, so thanks for that at least. Overall, though, I think you know what did here, and it at least seemed like you had fun doing it.

A Call to the Restoration Crew

I kinda liked this one, the M&M tattoo was a good idea, but it was kind of a mystery/whodunnit and it didn't quite work. The intention of the piece didn’t feel all that clear to me. The somewhat lack of an ending helps make this fall kinda flat and lands it in the unforgettable. But hey, a good idea is still worth applauding and the high-concept parts of this story work well.

The Satanists

There’s a surprising glut of band stories in TD. Feel like most weeks there’s usually one in there somewhere. They’re nearly always bad. This one wasn’t. It had a Stephen King kind of vibe to its tone and I was into it. The descriptions of the concert/action, in general, kept me engaged and I enjoyed this from start to finish. I lobbied hard for this one to HM, but it was not meant to be.

The Wizard’s Hoard

I wanted so much more from this. I was dreading a dark and gut-wrenching ending and yet I read it and my guts remained in place and intact. I was doubly upset to learn that it was you who wrote this because i’ve seen you pull of hopeless/tragic endings masterfully in entries past. This all ends up being about not much at all. She doesn’t really go through all that much, just kinda witnesses stuff and in the end, everything just sorta works out. Meh.


I don’t know how a story with so many cool things in it ends up being boring, but here we are. If anything betrayed you here, it was likely the relatively objective/flat prose. The story was also baggy, with lots of things we don’t really need slowing down the already pretty slow pace. Ask yourself what this paragraph accomplishes and if it’s needed at all: “The curtain blew in the breeze from the open window and I moved to it. No, not open. Glass glinted from the ground below. I saw the hitching posts where horses must have been tied. There were several frayed ropes hanging loose, swaying in the breeze, and many hoofprints leading south through the muck. But I had no need for horses.”

Minding the gap

This got the dreaded ‘glaze-over-award’ from me. I tried reading it again just now and I couldn’t do it again. I’m having a hard time following this and offering up much of any reason why. Perhaps I can’t figure out what’s going on. But hey, that makes me feel like my grandfather, who liked to ask “who’s the goody and who’s the baddy?” When we watched movies together. And I miss my grandfather a lot, so thank you for reminding me of my grandfather.

Diamonds are a Wizard’s Biggest Headache

My initial notes for this were: “Think I liked this one more than I should have. It started out strong, but then I realized that the introduction actually wasted a lot of time? And then the ending was bad I think? But I liked it. I don't know how to feel anymore. Help.” But upon returning to judge these months later, this like Protean before it, was one of the few stories that I actually remember. I remember the high concept bit of it and I remember enjoying. So hey, staying power!

The Dream Taker

A very not-so-subtle approach to this week. Has a very “You’re a wizard, Harry” vibe to it. Not sure why it’s helpful or good to basically watch our protag go through the tutorial of their powers, even if it all ends up being a ruse, it’s not particularly fun or engaging up to the point so when the twist hits, it’s kinda too little, too late.. Start where things actually get interesting


A chore to get through, this didn’t have the kind of hook to it that I’ve you incorporate into other entries. The prose mostly fell flat and there were some clarity issues with who these people were and what their blocking was that kept this in the realm of unfun.

Bambina Loca

Made me laugh in parts but there was a distinct lack of clarity that prevented me from engaging with the story. This was largely disjointed and the ending made me feel like you didn’t care. Think I laughed and got lost in equal parts through this one, so I guess that ain’t all bad.

The Alter on the Mount

Oh, right, this one. Yeah, I remember this one and all of its not named characters. This was an easy-as-hell pick for the loss. The prose was terribly clunky and there were an unacceptably large amount of proofing errors. For someone with 30 + entries, you should probably know better by now. As a rule, if it looks like someone didn’t spend time cleaning up their story, I’d rather not spend a whole lot of time critting it.

From Death

Second only to the winner this week in characterizing the wizard. This was a good, compelling piece of fiction that was elevated by the perception and weight of good consequences. The tale was visceral, spooky, and the atmosphere popped right off the page. A solid entry.


Baggy. I actually remember starting crits a bit ago for this week and you were RNG’d first. I began deleting large chunks of the story and found that much of it read the same way to me. Overall, it was a fine read but I think if there’s a persistent crit I have of your word it would be that you do tend to go for more than you need to, wordcount wise.

Luck Be A Lady

This piece earned its W. The strongest characterization of the week, set in a perfect depiction of Vegas. It certainly helped your case that anything about Vegas is usually an instant interest catcher for me, but this story stands up anyway. I liked how the scale of the story was on the smaller side, yet the stakes were there and the burn stings in the end.

Chili fucked around with this message at 06:25 on Feb 7, 2018

Sham bam bamina!
Nov 6, 2012

ƨtupid cat
In with the classic (?) Crystal Method hit "Comin' Back", which continues to be a not-really-all-that-guilty pleasure.

edit: linking the album version instead of the awful single mix

Sham bam bamina! fucked around with this message at 16:52 on Feb 7, 2018

Feb 22, 2010
In with Mastodon's Crystal Skull.

:toxx: for last week's shameful effort. No fan fic this time my bad.

Fuschia tude
Dec 26, 2004


Chili posted:

More bad crits from a bad man.

Week #257: No failing wizard week



Nov 3, 2010

Scoffing at modernity.
:siren: Thunderdome Recap! :siren:

Join Sitting Here, Ironic Twist, and me out on the lanai for cheesecake and a review of Week 284: That's How the Light Gets In and Week 285: Tempus Fuckit. This was a rough pair of rounds for newbies, not to mention Twist's vocal cords. We offer the writers of the negative mentions what we hope is useful advice on worldbuilding, footnotes, and the proper spelling of through; Ironic Twist performs RandomPauI's "Letters of the Confessor of Schwerkraftfälle" in its epic entirety, and we all contribute to a reading of Crain's "The Porter." Then... well, then Sitting Here discovers the Golden Girls section of, and Twist has to live with the consequences.

I beg the lord’s forgiveness for my heinous transgressions and I plead that you intercede on my behalf.

Episodes past can be found here!

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