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HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

In.

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HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Here's my entry. No flash rule.

Protect and Survive (1165 words)

Her brother Bill had told Annie that nine-tenths of soldiering was waiting around for something to happen, but she hadn't thought it'd be the same for her side of the war.

When the boys were returning from a raid, some in trouble, sometimes pursued by German planes, of course then it was exciting, even though Annie's friend Kate had been horrified to hear her use the word. Then you got to help, you could do something for the young men who needed you. You could guide them home. Once or twice Annie had been the last voice they heard. A lad with an accent that reminded her strongly of her Birmingham home had been cut off with horrible abruptness during a report once, and she'd had to go outside and have a cigarette before she could go on. Sergeant Cobham had spoken to her after that with the strangest combination of kindness and severity she'd ever heard. Cobham had a husband out there fighting, and Annie couldn't fathom how she could be so cool under pressure.

But between times, when the planes had gone and were due back soon and you had to just sit there waiting, it was downright dull. You weren't supposed to chatter too much, in case an emergency transmission came in, so mostly you just sat there and looked at your fingernails or contemplated dinner. Sometimes Annie found herself forgetting the reasons behind the war. She found herself sick with boredom and worry; she fretted over her brother, a soldier fighting in France, and she found herself doubting that the war would ever end.

It was late on a winter's night when a strange transmission cut into Annie's numb evening routine. A little girl's voice chanted in strange, stilted German. "Eins zwo drei vier funf." The unseen child had a peculiar, artificial quality, like a recording of a recording. "Eins zwo drei vier funf." Annie could get no response to her own hails and after a minute or two of trying, during which the numbers just kept on repeating, she called the Sergeant over.

"Weather data, isn't it?" the Sergeant said uneasily. She was a sturdy woman and, as she leaned over Annie's desk to listen to her headset, Annie could smell the onions she'd had with her dinner. "Some German weather transmission."

"Yes," said Annie, "but it's just counting again and again. And why a child?"

Sergeant Cobham started to answer, then blinked and pulled the headset off. "It's gone," she said. "Make a report, but probably just a weather transmission, or something. Write it up, there's a girl, but let's get back to it, all right? They'll be back soon."

Two nights later, at the same time, Annie's headset began to crackle and she expected to hear the odd counting broadcast again. When it was different, she called the Sergeant over. "American this time," Cobham said.

"No, listen," Annie said. "It's not anything of ours, just listen."

The voice was distant, echoey, and she'd heard it before, saying just these words. "Get this, Charlie, get this, Charlie, it's - fire! And it's crashing! It's crashing terrible! Oh, my! Get out of the way, please! It's burning and bursting into flames..."

Cobham snatched the headset off of her head and frowned at it. She'd paled a little and Annie bit her lip, realising too late that the subject might be painful. "It's that Hindenberg broadcast."

"Yes," Annie said. "Perhaps it's being played on some other station? Interference."

"Interference," Cobham muttered. "Don't we have enough crashes and flames without listening to some Nazi airship smashing itself up? Never mind that now." She returned, brooding, to her own chair, and when Annie returned to the headset, there was nothing but the faint hiss of empty air.

The next unusual broadcast came as Annie was talking to a Spitfire pilot on his way out across the channel. His announcement of his position was cut off by a sudden crackle and Annie bit back a curse to call him again. "Squadron Leader? Say again, please sir. Say again?"

"A shot has rung out! A shot rang out and Lee Oswald falls! Lee Oswald has fallen! A shot has rung out here--" The frantic American voice dissolved into a chaos of shouting, furious men's voices that cut off abruptly into hissing silence. Annie looked over her shoulder, tense and frightened, but the Sergeant was busy talking and didn't so much as glance her way. She flicked switches, changing away from the channel and back to it, and found the impatient Spitfire man waiting for her response.

After that she found herself receiving a strange signal of some kind every two or three days. Often they were in other languages, and those she would write up as best she could, in case they were important intelligence of some kind. Sometimes they were in English, snippets from the past that she told herself were just interference from other stations. But sometimes, like the American one about the shooting, they were about unknown and strange events. At least once, she heard something about men on the moon, and when she tried to tell Kate about that - she had long ago stopped telling the Sergeant, who was just becoming more and more quiet and withdrawn - she got herself laughed at. Kate was a very practical person.

When the time came to take Christmas leave, Annie found herself almost reluctant to go. Of course she wanted to see her mother, but the signals had come to dominate her idle moments. She wrote diary entries about them, sometimes, in the little lockable book she kept under her bed. She spent a fraught, uneasy Christmas in a house too marked by the absence of her brother to really feel like home.

There wasn't long to wait. Two days after her return, Annie was listening to empty air when the familiar crackle made her sit up straighter. The voice that came this time was English, a clipped radio voice, speaking quite carefully.

"--with nuclear weapons. Communications have been severely disrupted, and the number of casualties and the extent of the damage are not yet known. We shall bring you further information as soon as possible. Meanwhile, stay tuned to this wavelength, stay calm and stay in your own homes."

Annie had to remind herself that these signals, the ones with the strange, echoey quality, had never related to anything solid except things that were long-past. They weren't real. Radio drama, she told herself. Silly nonsense.

"--a fallout warning has been given, stay in your fallout room until you are told it is safe to come out. When the immediate danger has passed the sirens will sound a steady note. The "all clear" message will also be given on this wavelength. If you leave the fallout room to go--"

She listened until the transmission faded out, and she listened all that night and for every shift afterward, but she never heard anything like an all-clear.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

A Tin Of Beans posted:

Since docbeard kindly gave my story a crit, I decided to pass on the savings and values to you, Hopper UK!


Thanks very much!

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib


Thanks for that! Very helpful. The crits here are awesome.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

I'm in.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

God Over Djinn posted:

Sorry to pick on you two

I do not believe you are sorry at all!

Thanks for the crit dude.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Sorcha and the Mirror (1092 words)

When Sorcha was little, she dreamed of working at the castle. She saw the ladies riding up the hill, and she imagined how it would be to see them dancing in all their finery in the golden halls. But the Queen only hired servants of exceptional talent, and as Sorcha grew, she turned out to be competent at many things, but brilliant at nothing.

"Who cares if you can't bake a perfect pie or sing a perfect song?" her mother said as they scrubbed at the laundry together. "You're my Sorcha and that you'll always be."

When Sorcha was fourteen she was hired on as kitchen maid at the mayor's house. The mayor was an impatient little man with a silly moustache, and his wife was sharp-tongued and unkind, but Sorcha bore it well and each evening she went home to the warmth of her mother's house.

One summer morning, Sorcha was washing the pots and pans when she heard Agnes the senior maid grumbling in frustration. "I declare," said Agnes, "I can't get the mark to come away from this glass for anything!"

"Let me try." Sorcha rubbed at the black mark with her thumb and it disappeared. Agnes snatched the glass away so fast Sorcha was afraid it would fall.

"How did you do that?" Agnes held the glass to the light to see its perfect shine, and caught at Sorcha's hand to see the thumb responsible.

"I don't know," said Sorcha, too startled to mind the thumb examination. "I never did it before."

Together they tested Sorcha's new ability and found she could do nothing with china, wood, or ivory. A brush of her thumb could clean glass, for sure, but everything else behaved just as it always had. "I finally have a talent," said Sorcha, and when she went home that night she told her mother.

"A fine talent," said her mother, "when we've not a single glass in the house!"

"I can at least keep the windows clean," said Sorcha, feeling that her talent was perhaps a small thing after all. Not, anyway, the sort of thing a Queen had any use for. When she returned to work, she asked Agnes to keep her talent a secret, and the older girl agreed, but with a smile that made Sorcha worry. Agnes was a gossip.

Three days later, a message came down that Sorcha was wanted at the castle. The mayor blustered and his wife frowned, for they were very seldom invited to the castle themselves. But they agreed to send Sorcha, and she went on her way with a head full of admonishments and rules.

Sorcha stood in a fine marble chamber and smoothed at her skirt with trembling hands. The castle was as beautiful as she'd imagined, but she felt that she didn't belong in it at all. It felt empty and lacking in life. The servants she saw were subdued, and there were no shouts of joy or anger, no sounds of laughter. The maid who opened the door to admit her smiled kindly, but Sorcha could find no smile in return.

Behind a mahogany table sat the Queen. She looked as if she had never had a wrinkled skirt, never blushed or felt awkward. She smiled at Sorcha and with one perfect hand beckoned her closer. "I hear you have a remarkable talent," she said.

Sorcha made a curtsey. The carpet beneath her feet was thicker and softer than she'd ever felt. She didn't like to look away at the paintings on the walls, in case it was rude. But hadn't the mayor's wife said that staring at the Queen too long would be rude too? She bit her lip.

"Don't be afraid, child," the Queen said. She gestured to the corner of the room, where a tall frame leaned against the wall, covered in a gauzy sheet. "Uncover my mirror."

With shaking hands Sorcha pulled the sheet from the mirror. She gasped. Someone had hurled black paint over the mirror's surface. The fine golden frame was marred, and barely a speck of shining glass showed. "Oh, how dreadful," Sorcha cried, before she could remember her manners.

"Yes." The Queen rose and came closer. "Once a man hated this mirror, for it showed him his true self, and he found the sight unbearable. He could not shatter the glass, not with fist or hammer, so he blackened it instead. But now I am growing older, and I should like to see my true self." She smiled at Sorcha, but Sorcha thought the smile was more sad than happy. "Will you clean my mirror, Sorcha?"

"I will, your Majesty," whispered Sorcha, quite taken with the story, and she curtseyed again for good measure. The Queen's smile became touched with amusement.

"Thank you, my dear," she said.

Sorcha raised her hands and wiped the black paint from the surface of the mirror. With each stroke more of the shining surface was revealed, until Sorcha wiped away the last tiny smear with the side of her thumb. Her reflection was disappointing. She had hoped to see a fine ladies' maid, perhaps, or a fierce adventurer, or a dancer. Instead she saw Sorcha, just as she had been that morning, but now with untidy hair and black paint on her hands.

In the room's reflection, the paintings were sad and faded, and cobwebs and dust covered the walls. It looked like a room that was dying. Sorcha stared a moment before remembering her manners. "It's finished, your Majesty," she said, and stepped back from the mirror.

The Queen sat at her table with her eyes closed and her hands gripping each other. "Thank you, my dear," she said. "I should like to be alone when I look into my mirror. Perhaps I won't like what I see."

Sorcha met the kindly maid in the hall. "I expect you could work here now, if you wanted," said the maid.

Sorcha thought of the sad Queen, and the truthful mirror. "I think I'd better go home to my mother instead," she said. The maid took her to the steward, who gave her a purse of silver coins, enough to keep her mother in a comfortable old age. They sent her home, and she was glad to go.

"But I thought you wanted to work at the castle more than anything," teased her mother as they hugged.

"I thought so too," said Sorcha. "But I'm your Sorcha, and that I'll always be, and I don't want anyone to ever say differently."

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

WeLandedOnTheMoon! posted:


HopperUK, the job is yours now, sucker.

Holy shitmonkeys!

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

This is already so much worse than last week

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Thunderdome LXXXVII: Touched by a Thunderdome

Listen up fucknuts. I didn't expect to win and I don't want to have to read two dozen piles of poo poo to pay for it. I like reading, don't take that away from me.

Your story will be about an angel or angels

Not an alien, not a highly-evolved human, not some kind of technological trick. An actual angel of God. I don't mind what God is, I don't care if you draw from existing religious traditions or make up your own, but your story will contain or be about at least one goddamn angel.

As usual no fanfic, no erotica.

Judges:
Me
curlingiron
Dr. Kloctopussy

Sign-up by: Saturday, April 5th, 03:00 BST (THAT IS FRIDAY EVENING FOR MOST OF YOU FUCKS)

Submit by: Monday, April 7th, 03:00 BST (THAT IS SUNDAY EVENING FOR gently caress'S SAKE)

Word count: 1200 words

Entrants:
Jeza
Djeser
Jonked (Flash rule: The angel in your story is incapable of speech)
WeLandedOnTheMoon! (Flash rule: Your story takes place on a ship)
Sitting Here
Erogenous Beef
Whalley (Flash rule: Set in 14th-century Europe)
tenniseveryone
Starter Wiggin
A Tin of Beans (Flash rule: Biblical angel)
RunningIntoWalls (Flash rule: Must pass the Bechdel test)
sebmojo
Tyrannosaurus
Nitrousoxide (Flash rule: Must contain violence but no death)
Masonity
Phobia (Flash rule: Your story must be told in the first person)
Paladinus (Flash rule: Everyone in your story must be dead when it starts)
Perpetulance (Flash rule: Your protagonist is an animal)
nickmeister (dropped out like a coward)
DreamingofRoses (Flash rule: Your story must prominently feature the London Underground)
CommissarMega (Flash rule: A lost flashlight is a major plot point)
Fanky Malloons
lambeth (Flash rule: Angels are commonplace)
Maultaschen
elfdude
ravenkult
Entenzahn (Flash rule: Existence of angels unknown)
Lake Jucas (Flash rule: Story must include a sentient AI)
ZorajitZorajit
God Over Djinn
Fumblemouse
Gau
Grizzled Patriarch
crabrock
Thalamas
Benny the Snake
Kaishai
Some Guy TT
Sign-ups closed!

HopperUK fucked around with this message at Apr 5, 2014 around 21:43

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

WeLandedOnTheMoon! posted:

I AM SIGNING UP AND WOULD LIKE A FLASH RULE.

Flash rule: Your story takes place on a ship!

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Jonked posted:

In.

Also gimme a flash rule you noob.

Your flash rule: the angel in your story is incapable of speech

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Whalley posted:

IN and I kind of want a fuckin' flash rule hell yeah

Flash rule: Your story is set in 14th-century Europe

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

A Tin Of Beans posted:

I'm in! I am as in as I have ever been.

Can I get a flash rule?

Flash rule: Your angel or angels must conform to the description given in Ezekiel 1:1 here.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

RunningIntoWalls posted:

Two in row. Let's make it three! In. And I need a flash rule.

Flash rule: Your story must pass the Bechdel test.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Nitrousoxide posted:

In. Flash me please.

Flash rule: Your story must contain violence, but no death

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Phobia posted:

In, so in. Also, flash me Hoppa'.

Flash rule: Your story must be written in the first person.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Paladinus posted:

In. Flash me with some divine light.

Flash rule: Everyone in your story must be dead when it starts.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

perpetulance posted:

In, with a wish to be blinded with a flashing light.

Flash rule: Your protagonist is an animal.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

DreamingofRoses posted:

In with another and a request for a flash rule from Hopper and anyone else who so desires.

Flash rule: Your story must prominently feature the London Underground.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

CommissarMega posted:

Flash me, goons. I know you want to.

Flash rule: A lost flashlight is a major plot point.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

lambeth posted:

I'm in, and ing myself so I don't chicken out. I'd like a flash rule too, please.

Flash rule: In your story, angels are commonplace and everywhere, no big deal. Think vampires in True Blood.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Entenzahn posted:

In + Flash rule pls

Flash rule: Nobody in your story knows angels are real, not even the angel itself (at least to begin with)

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Lake Jucas posted:

In. Flash rule me.

Flash rule: your story must include at least one sentient AI.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Around five and a half hours remain to sign up!

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Three hours remain for sign-ups!

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

SIGN-UPS ARE CLOSED

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Some Guy TT posted:

gently caress! I only just got back after a bunch of stupid delays! I knew I should have signed up two days ago!

You can be in if you want! Say if you want to be in I want to go to bed you rear end in a top hat

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Some Guy TT posted:

I'm in thanks for the reprieve.

Okay then! But that's all folks.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Djeser posted:

I'm out. I'd blame work, but gently caress that, this is on me. Hopper, count yourself lucky. Or not, since you're still judging.

I encourage anyone else who is afraid of judgment to drop out like a big baby coward!

Reminder: TWELVE HOURS remain to submit. The cutoff is 10pm EST, not midnight.

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

CommissarMega posted:

Is it possible to get a time extension, maybe an hour or two?

Sorry dude, the deadline is my bedtime. Write faster!

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Just over FOUR HOURS remain to submit!

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

THREE HOURS REMAIN, HURRY THE gently caress UP

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

One hour remaining!

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

SUBMISSIONS ARE CLOSED!

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

ATTENTION DreamingOfRoses
You are toxxed this week and you've missed the deadline, but I am a benevolent god, so get your story posted before midnight EST and you shall not be banned!

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Touched by a Thunderdome: RESULTS

Congratulations fucknuts, you have left me with a glimmer of hope still in my heart thanks to the overall lack of horrible poo poo this week!

The winner is Fumblemouse, who caught the imagination with colossal falling angels. Nice work.

Honourable mentions this week go to Sitting Here and godoverdjinn for moving and amusing us, apparently on purpose.

Dishonourable mentions this week to ZorajitZorajit for a boring pretentious non-story and elfdude for sucking at absolutely every aspect of what makes a story work, so they should feel lucky that -

The loser is RunningIntoWalls. Goddamn, I didn't want to do this to you again, but holy poo poo was that terrible. Proofread! Edit once in a while maybe! Give more of a gently caress!

Special mention to Tyrannosaurus who probably would have won if they'd bothered to put an actual angel in their story like I asked.

Jeza's story is yet to appear. Djeser, nickmeister and CommissarMega at least had the grace to admit they were backing out. The following posters didn't bother to submit or say anything and are now on the shitlist: Whalley, A Tin of Beans, Masonity, Entenzahn, Lake Jucas, Grizzled Patriarch

And DreamingOfRoses didn't speak up in time to avoid a toxx.

I felt like the standard was pretty high this week! Some fairly good poo poo got nothing, proving that a rising tide doesn't actually carry all boats. Crits will come later. For right now, step up, Fumblemouse! It's your problem now wheeee

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Here are some short crits for my judging week! More to come, and a line-by-line or two probably since these won't be very in-depth. I was having a nice day and now I'm all mad again. gently caress. Here goes for Gau, Thalamas, Tyrannosaurus and RunningIntoWalls.

Touched By A Thunderdome posted:

GAU - The Suffering Sister
Your actual writing style is fine, I think, but the real problem with this is that all the most interesting stuff in it happens around the edges. As others have said, the protagonist doesn't get to do much except get caught and then rescued. We don't see her develop or even really find out much about who she is, on a fundamental level. I love the idea of two souls back from the dead, trying to do good against the orders of heaven. I just don't think this was quite the right story.

THALAMAS - The Inside Job
An actual story happens in your story! Nice job! Having said that, there's something a bit clumsy about your prose and plausibility gets stretched a few times. Can you really knock out a soul in heaven by punching it? Where did he get the rock from? Isn't that a really terrible thing he did and gets no come-uppance for? I feel like this story's problems are all really solvable.
I really liked 'The transformation was glorious'. Nice.

TYRANNOSAURUS - Testify
Okay you know what, gently caress you, because I love this story and it doesn't have an angel in it. I asked for an angel of God and this is a Hell's Angel, and that's not the same thing. You would have had the win from me if you'd followed the goddamn prompt. Grr.
Also if anyone doesn't know about them, Bikers Against Child Abuse are a real thing.

RUNNINGINTOWALLS - The Visitor
Your writing is confused. You must, must, must get someone who isn't connected with you to read your poo poo and ask them if it makes any sense. Then you have to read your work out loud and see if you didn't, for example, miss out entire words of a sentence and render it nonsensical. I'll probably do a line-by-line on this because christ, dude, your writing needs a LOT of help.
Having said that 'She calmed the kettle and roused the television' is like my favourite line anyone wrote all week. That's not a suggestion that you get all cute and gimmicky from now on!

HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Cutting into entry-posting day with more extremely belated crits from angel week!

Happy Easter! posted:

SOME GUY TT - For the Glory of God
I kind of enjoy your writing style but I'm not sure there's much going on here. I like the setting but I don't think it's made clear exactly what the position of Charles is here. Did he die and become an angel? Was he an angel all the time? I found your story confusing and a bit incoherent. Not hating, just not getting it.

GOD OVER DJINN - Reapers, Sowers
This story amused the hell out of me. I mean that angel is a total dick but I enjoyed that he was such a human kind of dick. Everyone's motivations were clear, or at least I felt like they were, and you captured a character voice perfectly. Nice job.

TENNISEVERYONE - Mixed Blessing
This is more of an incident than a story. Lady finds out she's the new Mary, and then what? Nothing. Also I hate when people write out 'ahem' as if it's a word rather than a throat-clearing noise. I also thought 'Christ, what were you doing in there?' was pretty funny considering. I like this for what it is but it ain't a story.

EROGENOUS BEEF - Concessions
I don't think this quite works. It's a frustrating piece because I feel like it could have been good. If you'd concentrated more on the soul who ultimately gets saved and focused the story, maybe? As it is, I feel like the stuff at the baseball game is just world-building filler and could have been skipped.

ZORAJITZORAJIT - Burning Bright
Freshman, freshman, burning bright
In the classroom day and night
What immortal hand or eye
Can stomach thy half-baked philosophy

Seriously though, what were you trying to say here? I don't get it. You can write, but this is just word-vomit. Shame on you.

PALADINUS - Angel of Light
You didn't stick the ending here. 'Bad guy finds out he was bad after he dies' is a cliche but it could have worked. It just falls a bit flat here and I'm not completely clear what happened at the end. I don't hate your writing style though. Except for 'uttered back Michael'. Next time replace every single dialogue tag with 'said' and go through and see if there are any that just will not work that way. And never use 'uttered' again. I forbid it.

MAULTASCHEN - In the Wind
The owls are not what they seem! I actually kind of dig this. Owls fly silently though, as someone else pointed out. And the repetition of 'flap flap flap' just started to get silly after a while which ruined the tone. There's a kernel of something worth reading here.

WELANDEDONTHEMOON - Black Jesus Story
'Blaqface', really? And why was this week so violent? And why write out 'bang! bang! bang!' like you were scripting a comic book? Bah.

FUMBLEMOUSE - Falling Angels
Well we gave you the win so clearly I liked this one a lot. I think the cancer was a cliche, and it made the ending a bit twee, kind of? I didn't believe the girl's dialogue, she didn't sound like a real kid to me. But the imagery in this was fantastic and I enjoyed the premise and story. Nice job.

More to come.

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HopperUK
Apr 29, 2007

Clear off, fatso, this is a respectable establishment





Fallen Rib

Final batch of short crits!

Violence and death and torture ugh posted:

CRABROCK - Angelic
I get that the swearing was supposed to be like, the opposite of traditional angelic thought processes, but when there's this much of it I just get the impression the thing was written by a twelve-year-old boy trying to sound edgy. I also think the 'IT WAS THE GARDEN OF EDEN!' gag at the end is kind of dumb. Like the millions of disintegrated angels though, and you have a lively and engaging style.

PERPETULANCE - Clipped Wings
Corvid intelligence is interesting and I'm the one who made you write an animal story, I think, so I'll let you off on the goofy premise. It's not the goofiest this week, for sure. There are basic problems with this. You have typing errors and grammar hiccups. The idea that a crow, however smart, can literally read the Bible was probably a stretch too far. You don't make the creature's inner life real and what happens to him doesn't make much sense. Needs a rethink.

KAISHAI - Angel of the Morning
I didn't even spot that you got the bike accident in here. :applause:
Your kids actually felt like real kids to me which was better than a lot of people do. I understood everything that happened and why. I think the sudden violence of Taylor's accident is jarring and doesn't quite fit the tone of the story, but maybe that was the point? Nice job here.

SEBMOJO - The Gaps Between
I love, love, love your angels. They feel alien and unknowable and never quite hostile. Absolute truth as something almost unbearable is a nice touch too. Really the only thing I hate about this is the ending, but I hate that a lot. Why did he kill that guy? I don't buy that murder is just at the root of every human soul, so why did it happen here? Bad ending! Bad!

JONKED - The Holy Flame
I was enjoying this and then it just sort of stopped. I get that you tried to express that he was dying on the street but that ending is just goofy and doesn't come off at all. There's something off about the pacing and that 'so cold' bit isn't moving or spooky, it's just daft. Why was he suddenly sorry? Was it for the murders or for quitting the murders? He's confusing.

RAVENKULT - Throne
drat, those Throne angels are dicks. Keep an eye on your paragraph breaks. They seem a bit weird and short, especially up where you won't combine any dialogue with action. You have a way with description though and I felt like the last line ended well. Not bad.

SITTING HERE - All Too Soon
I'm not there's technically an angel in this story, either. There was a sense of reality and wonder about this story that made it really hit for me. I did go to an all-girl's school and sing in a choir, and I felt like you captured a sense of how that can feel when it's working.

BENNY THE SNAKE - Angel of Sorrows
A beloved old man dies. This is an incident, not a story. I mean don't get me wrong, I'm glad there was no weird murder in your story this week but you have to have something happen. Get a character arc in there. Anything. This was a snooze.

IAMBETH - Choices
There was a lot of telling rather than showing in their past relationship, which made it hard to believe and hard to care about. I mean at least there's an understandable arc in your story and the angel decides, I think, to quit pining and move on? Nothing wildly original here but your style is solid and I didn't end this story by hating anyone.

STARTER WIGGIN - Breaking Point
This story is confusing in its timeline. How does the Conscience know the Immorality so well when they never speak to each other? Did they only ever get one soul, which died in infancy and never had any need of them? You can't just tell us someone is intelligent and awesome and gorgeous and lively, you have to let us see that.

PHOBIA - Angel of Death
I like the way you write but I kind of hate what's in this story. There's no substance here. A guy is meant to die, doesn't want to, mopes about it a while, HE WAS DEAD ALL ALONG! I like the way he chose to go out but the story is just a lot of talking, and it's not particularly exciting talking. Needs an energy boost.

FANKY MALLOONS - Black Jesus 2
Audrey doesn't feel consistent or real here. I actually like what you've done with the Black Jesus injoke I do not pretend to understand, but I don't get why she flips from divine wrath to allowing herself to be seduced. If it's a gag story it doesn't quite make itself funny enough, and if not, it feels too thin.

NITROUSOXIDE - Payment
Ugh, I don't like this. It's the kind of twist that just makes the reader irritated because you pulled it off by withholding all the appropriate information. If you're in a character's head this much it's a hard thing to keep anything mysterious. I feel like consigning an angel to eternal torment in hell, or whatever, is deeply evil and you didn't seem like you were going for deeply evil. That's a lot of words to say 'your story confused me'.

Sorry these took so long!

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