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dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

ThirdEmperor posted:

I'm only beheinz on last week because my computer malfunctioned right when I hit send. There was some packet loss.

have you considered... getting a brain?

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Sham bam bamina!
Nov 6, 2012

ƨtupid cat


Gravy Boat 2k

Dr. Kloctopussy posted:

More like package loss.

(i.e. balls)

(i.e. a sexist reference to a loss of courage that implies that women and femininity are inherently weak)
If you had left it at the first parenthetical, it would have been simply a reference to castration. Only by your own choice was this sexist.

derp
Jan 21, 2010

a little less conversation and a little more filthy rodents


Lipstick Apathy

i forgot the reasons why people write anywhere other than google docs?... something about bespoke artisanal fiction on handcrafted paper with archival ink, or something?

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003


Sham bam bamina! posted:

If you had left it at the first parenthetical, it would have been simply a reference to castration. Only by your own choice was this sexist.

Sorry no, the fact that castration is used to indicate a lack of or reduction in courage is pretty much inherently sexist.

Yoruichi
Sep 21, 2017

Time for tea and Thunderdome

Dr. Kloctopussy posted:

More like package loss.

(i.e. balls)

(i.e. a sexist reference to a loss of courage that implies that women and femininity are inherently weak)

Lol balls, those things are inherently funny.

Also please try and keep your poo poo together people, judgement is coming in a matter of hours

Djeser
Mar 22, 2013



Yoruichi posted:

Lol balls inherently coming

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

Aaaarrrrggghhh

1000 words

steeltoedsneakers
Jul 26, 2016


Dr. Kloctopussy posted:

Sorry no, the fact that castration is used to indicate a lack of or reduction in courage is pretty much inherently sexist.

(i.e a sexist reference to feminity as the absence of masculinity)

Schneider Heim
Oct 17, 2012


balls are weak and sensitive anyway

vaginas though, those can take a pounding

curlingiron
Dec 15, 2006

Adventure Awaits!


Fun Shoe

Less social commentary, more Tomato/Star Trek erotic fanfic, please.

e: prompt??????????????

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

SCARY CLOWN WILL DELIVER FAIRGROUND JUDGMENT



i'm not gonna lie, this was kind of a lukewarm fairground battered sausage of a week. the rides, like the stories, were mainly notable for their rickety mediocrity.

however one stood out as bad, even by the low standards of scary clown funland, and that was Simbyotic's The Amazing Victor Steele Amusement Park. you posted fast, Simbyotic, like some kind of trick shot open clownmouth guy, but shot oh so wide of the mark. you are the loser this week, but remember you can always fall to rise again. unless you fall into the whirring gears of the Mashmaster, then it's pretty much curtains.

a bunch of other fairgoers had bad experiences this week - hang your heads Sham Bam Bamina, Ironic Twist, Devorum, Apophenia and Exmond . your rides were either incomprehensible, unfinished or channelling that weird pube-beard attendant guy who talks in a whisper.

on the shiny side, there were a few standouts - judges disagreed on which, so there's no consensus in the choices of Magnificent7, Thranguy and Hawklad. their rides were fun, safe, and didn't stink of vomit. thunderdome: setting unreasonable standards since 2012.

that standard was met and exceeded by only one story this week, and although the queue was long all day the people didn't mind. this wasn't a flashy story but it fitted its wordcount, had nice characters, a small but meaningful set of events and ended on a nice curl.

accept the certificate of best ride one week running: Sparksbloom, with Test Your Strength!

Schneider Heim
Oct 17, 2012


I will crit up to 3 stories, any takers?

Chili
Jan 23, 2004

College kids ain't shit


Grimey Drawer

Schneider Heim posted:

I will crit up to 3 stories, any takers?

Yes please. Unless newer folks claim them.

Also: Prompt. seriously-what-the-hell

SerCypher
May 9, 2006

Everything has gone horribly wrong

Fun Shoe

Schneider Heim posted:

I will crit up to 3 stories, any takers?

Sure, mine if you don't mind.

I know about the perspective/grammar issues though, my bad for changing a lot of it at the last minute.

Yoruichi
Sep 21, 2017

Time for tea and Thunderdome

Crits for week 272, in order of submission

My theme for this week is irritating nonsensical details. Bizarre lengths of time or distance. Contradictory details. Things that make you think, “wait, what?” and jolt you out of the story. Pay more attention to the details of the scene you are trying to create for your reader, tsk.


Symbiotic: The Amazing Victor Steele Amusement Park


I guess this is an interesting twist on a running away from home story, where instead of any sort of redemption or resolution the protagonist just ends up back at home getting a hiding. But, nothing really happens.

This story didn’t really hang together for me, as too many elements were unexplained. Why is he named after a character from Robin Hood? Is this a deliberate reference? Why is the protagonist so obsessed with amusement parks, such that “his surprise discovery excited him like no other could” and “You might even say his whole life was leading up to this moment” even though he’s not “seen many amusement parks before, this might be his first even”? And there’s no explanation at all for the spooky yet very safety conscious mysteriously disappearing amusement park.

I also found a lot of the prose confusing and distracting. The opening para is one hella long sentence. In fact there are a lot of sentences that would be better broken up rather than being full of commas. In some places it looks like you’re going for strange and interesting turns of phrase but you’ve just ended up sound strange. For example: “The letter sign announced” - as opposed to what other kind of sign? “...bone white teeth” - I think this is the normal colour for teeth. “His face struck in tears” - what? “Depravity and wickedness” - an odd choice of adjectives for cheesy horror movies. There are also some proofreading fails like rogue apostrophes.

Overall: 2/10. Too much weird and not enough story.


Chairchucker: Lawns Mowed on Time

In which someone loses their job and writes a gently caress you parting note to their boss in the astroturf that is only visible from the ferris wheel. That’s it, that’s the whole story. I thought there was going to be a romance angle between Suzie and Raven, but nah, they’re just colleagues who like to chat.

You describe Suzie as mowing the artificial grass for a month and a half. This is 6 weeks of work. Assuming a 40 hour working week and an average walking speed of 5km per hour, in this 240 hour period Suzie could literally have walked the entire length of the north island of New Zealand. Is this amusement park the size of a large city?

Overall: 3/10. A boring story set in a preposterously large amusement park.


Derp: Come One, Come All


The monster escapes, but children are so gross and terrifying that he’d rather go back to his tent where he only has to deal with them one to two at a time. Meh. On the upside, this isn’t badly written and I did quite like the sense of horror you express at being surrounded by other people’s terrible kids.

“But the thing just stared daftly and babbled on with the sound of a dying pony.” What I need to ask you is, what the gently caress sound do you think a dying pony makes? Horses don’t make any sounds that could be described as babbling, and don’t make any sounds when they’re in pain, unless it is horrific, in which case they scream. And why a pony specifically? Why Derp, why?

Overall: 5/10. Not super interesting but not terrible, disturbing equine reference aside.


Exmond: A cop worth a drat

Well we can rejoice in our shared anime nerdery, because I got your Psycho Pass reference without looking under the spoiler tags. But joy turns to despair with your decidedly lacklustre use of your second trope, white-haired bishounen. It reads like you started writing with the idea that your villain is a nasty looking punk type, and then halfway through thought, oh poo poo, he’s supposed to be a long-haired feminine beauty, and just jammed that in. It would have worked better if you’d made something of the contrast between your beat-down, soon to retire, recently divorced protag and the hot-guy villain early on. Looks terrible but is good, looks good but is evil - that would have been a better trope to draw on.

As for annoying details, “He started running towards the funhouse entrance, a few kilometres away.” A few kilometres is a really long way. I can only assume this story is set in the same city-state sized amusement park as Chairchucker’s. The punk first ducks behind a large animatronic dinosaur, then runs (a km or two?), then steps out from behind… another animatronic dinosaur. What is this, dino-park? And why is the girl wearing a VR helmet? Is this a pointless SAO reference?

On proofreading: you don’t need capitals after semicolons. You should say “the girl” rather than “a girl”, otherwise every time you mention the hostage it sounds like punk-bishounen guy has grabbed a different girl. ““Let the girl go.” I yelled,” should have a comma after the speech instead of a full stop.

Overall: 4/10. Not a terrible idea but poorly executed. 今度も頑張ってね.


Devorum: A Trip to Mythmania

In which he escapes his tormentors but ends up trapped inside a carousel in an abandoned amusement park. This is a really weird sequence of events with no rationale behind them. Last week my story got pinged for being a series of actions with no purpose or character development, and I think my friend that you have the same problem.

On non-matching details, in your second to last paragraph Akaemon the newly formed centaur closes his eyes for a nap. In the next paragraph the centaur (Terry) has his eyes open and they’re screaming. Is the centaur napping or not? Also: “He was not surprised when he felt the coarse hair of a stallion beneath his hand.” Nope, the coarseness of horses’ coats doesn’t vary by gender. Don’t just make things up about real animals.

Overall: 4/10. Well done for coming up with a weird idea and not writing dreadfully, but without anything to back it up I really don’t care about what happens to these people.


Tyrannosaurus: The Dragon and the Drop and the Tests Therein

The most interesting thing in this story is that the world is ending, and yet that is the bit we get to hear about the least. The rest is just about how Mi-sun and our protag work too much and seem to be in a pretty crappy relationship. I didn’t really get the heartbeat metaphor, if it was a metaphor for something.

If your roller coaster really has a 1000 foot drop then it is more than twice as high as the highest roller coaster in the world today. Given there’s nothing to indicate that this story is set in the future or that different rules of engineering apply, I object to this nonsensical detail. Also in your final para you say your carousel horses are made of porcelain, which is an implausibly delicate material.

Overall: 3/10. Nothing happens but at least the writing isn’t bad.


SerCypher: Upload

This story, just like the roller coaster it features, comes to a disappointing and inexplicable end. On the way up I was all like, ooooh where’s this going, and then… what?

As for lack of attention to detail, the narrative switches from first person, to third, and then back again, multiple times. Whose perspective is this story being told from you maniac?

Overall: 3/10. Your three points were earned entirely in the first half.


Ironic Twist: Alycia

Ok so there are some clever images in this. I liked “the space in my throat where a sound should be is bare,” and the image of hundreds of ferris wheels spinning in the air is pretty cool.

But otherwise I have absolutely no idea what this was about. Maybe you crossed some weirdness threshold beyond which I couldn’t follow you. Maybe this is just a pile of nonsense.

Overall: 2/10. You lost me with this one.


Schneider Heim: Test of Courage

In which jealousy and paranoia are driving the protag insane, but by the end she’s getting a grip, so that’s nice. This fell pretty flat for me. It’s like a teeny tiny ferris wheel that doesn’t go very high and then the ride is over before you start to care. Jumping from one ferris wheel cab to another mid way through the ride is the only real action in the story, but this is kinda undone by the ‘it was just a hallucination’ ending.

There is some clunky prose: “and Ely imagined the flames scorching her pale skin to a lustrous bronze, like her girlfriend's.” Ely is her girlfriend, but the way you’ve written this makes it sound like there’s a third woman in this relationship. “Despite their relatively short time together, Ingrid had wormed her way into Ely's life that she couldn't imagine it without her girlfriend in the first place.” This is an abomination of a sentence.

Overall: 4/10. Not dreadful, just meh.


Magnificent7: Darlene


The protag here isn’t so much haunted by the ghosts of bad decisions so much as just hanging out with friendly ghosts. And that’s pretty much it. He’s hanging out, doing his job, kissing his girlfriend, when suddenly, shock horror, she’s a ghost. Except that’s not a problem for our protag, he’s cool with being haunted. The end. How dull.

As for non-matching details, ghost girl says “He told you I drowned in a pond fire?” No, no he didn’t. He said she died in a fire next to a pond. Tsk.

Unfortunately the list I compiled of awful wording choices is rather long: I don’t think “plumb-fat” is a word. What the heck does this sentence mean: “If he had eyes, I’m sure they’d have been all cobbley like he’s sitting on a birthday cake”? “I was hand slapped.” As opposed to bitch slapped? Foot slapped perhaps? “When she waved at me I went like a fruit fly to dog food.” The reason they’re called fruit flies is because they like fruit. “...flickered like submerged tree roots in a pond.” Soggy tree roots are pretty much the least flickery thing you could have picked for this simile. “...her with her filthy nails and green teeth, him with his eye sockets as empty as a bone-dry bird bath.” One of these things is a normal result of working outdoors and eating spinach for lunch, the other is absolutely horrifying. What is wrong with your protag that he’s not way more freaked out by all this?

Overall: 4/10. Dull and weirdly written.


Apophenium: Vacation


This feels unfinished. We’ve got demo guy, the park coming down, a creepy child ghost who apparently hates coffee, and then it just stops. Is the ghost the spirit of the park they’re destroying? No one in the story seems to care about this, and accordingly neither do I.

You fail on detail because you have a man knocking down a building by hand, by himself. Why use machinery when you’ve got a sledgehammer. Way quicker, don’t know why we even bother with bulldozers.

Overall: 2/10. A story has to have an ending.


QuidProQuid: All the Vice President’s Men

I quite liked this one. Not a whole lot happens, but I like the description of the politician’s inner angst and the redemptive power of Disney is sweet. No complaints about the writing.

Overall: 6/10. Good job.


Sparksbloom: Test your Strength


This is a good story. Stuff happens, the emotions are genuine and relatable, the beginning and end are nicely balanced. If I have one minor complaint it’s that it took me a few paras to realise they’re at a high school reunion - it would have been better to stick this in the first para. But that didn’t stop me from enjoying reading this, and from smiling at the ending.

Overall: 8/10. Very nice.


Flesnolk: Refusal

For all of its weird inventiveness not a lot actually happens in this story. The bearded lady is an oracle who refuses to be an oracle for a bit and then someone nice turns up and she escapes. The half-faced man seemed important but he doesn’t really do anything.

At the start you say that “On the eighth night she refused bread and water and stayed in her tent so she would not miss the stars,” implying that she has the option of leaving the tent, but later she appears to be locked in a tank, guarded by no-eyes guy with a spear. Which is it? Tsk.

Overall: 3/10. This doesn’t make enough sense.


Fuubi: The Last Ride


This is sweet, although it feels a bit pointless. He’s scared of being in the sky, no wait he’s fine, not wait actually he’s not fine. There are a lot of words spent getting to our floating wonderland and then we just skip over the actual time they spend there. The fact that it’s Halloween night seems like an important point but this never comes up again. Are they going to die on the way down? Meh, I don’t care.

Overall: 5/10. Not terrible but not very interesting.


Fumblemouse: The Second Happiest Place On Earth

This is clever and well written. It’s weird but it makes sense. The creepy vibe is great without being overdone.

The Americans might not get it, but I am very pleased with your use of your flash rule. I will be laughing about this as I drag my rear end to work tomorrow.

Only complaint is a minor one - I didn’t get why “Mhhhhgh” needs to be repeated at the end.

Overall: 7/10. It’s possible that I like this just because you made good use of my flash rule, but hey, I still liked it.


Chili: Stitches

I don’t have that much to say about this. It’s interesting enough and I’ve got no complaints about the writing, but it’s a bit meh. Why does he care so much about this particular role?

Overall: 6/10. Not bad, didn’t grab me.


Hawklad: Break the Gears

This was gross and fun. A great weird idea convincingly described. I kinda want more about the protag’s backstory, but hey, I enjoyed reading it.

Overall: 7/10. Just the right amount of gore and weird while still making sense.


Thranguy: The View from Valhalla

The humour in this comedy rests, unfortunately, entirely on vomit jokes. Which don’t quite make sense, because why would a stationary roller coaster make you vomit? Apart from that we’ve got Rob being a dick and half a coming-out story, which doesn’t add up to much.

Overall: 5/10. Bleugh.


Pippin: Necks Door Down

Well that’s sweet, monsters can fall in love as well. But it’s a fairly unexciting end to your oh-poo poo-a-vampire-is-on-the-loose set up.

I’m also bothered by the implausibility of killer monsters signing up for poo poo jobs essentially as freaks in a freak show. Your monsters are simultaneously very scary and very childlike, a mismatch which means the whole story doesn’t quite work for me.

Overall: 5/10. Cute but not much else.


Sham bam bamina: Behind the Paint

This jumps all over the place and doesn’t quite add up to the story. Way too many, “wait, what?” moments. For example: “A black shirt wasn't the best thing to wear in this shimmering heat, nor was the grease paint that clung slickly to Jake's face. But Jake wasn't wearing them – he was them, and so were the brother and sister who had come with him.” Is he or is he not wearing a black shirt and grease paint? Is his name Jake Mathis or Jake Tanner? “Tad grinned in monochrome.” As in he grinned in black and white? “Gripping the chair. Stripes from the belt. A woman crying louder from the other room.” Where the gently caress are we now?

Overall: 1/10. I had no idea what you were talking about.

QuoProQuid
Jan 12, 2012

WHO LOVES BLOOD SODA?
KEL LOVES BLOOD SODA!


I do. I do. I do-oo.


Schneider Heim posted:

I will crit up to 3 stories, any takers?

heeeeeeey

sparksbloom
Apr 30, 2006


Week 273: A Wicked Pack of Cards


(Knight of Swords, from my favorite deck, the Mary-El)

I think there was a tarot week sometime in TD history. I wasn't around for it, so I don't care, I'm doing this anyway.

You have 800 words to write a story inspired by whatever tarot card you're assigned. Don't worry about looking into esoteric meanings -- I'll be handing out cards from decks with evocative images, but if you want to look into accepted meanings and symbology, you're free to do that as well. If you , you'll get an extra 300 words and an extra card.

The story must be about a friendship that's being tested. In the tradition of tarot, you are not allowed to have any literal death in your story.

Some general tips for this week:

You can feel free to look up card meanings, but I'm going to be a little disappointed if your story reflects the established, Rider-Waite-Smith meaning (which is what you'll see if you look up "insert card here meaning") and not what's actually depicted in the card. For example, I gave two people the Nine of Wands -- one from the Mary-El, and one from the Rider-Waite-Smith deck. If the person assigned the first card gives me a story about fatigue after a long battle, I'm going to assume you didn't trust yourself to look at the card. These are evocative images on their own, and I didn't spend two hours digging up cards from decks with distinctive art for people to ignore them completely.

That said, if you don't know anything about tarot, it might be helpful to know the suits:

Wands are fire, passion, the thing someone cares more about than anything else in the world;
Cups or Vessels are water, emotion, the unconscious, and sometimes spirituality;
Swords or Knives are air, the intellect, the mind, and communication;
and Pentacles, Discs, or Coins are earth, material things, the physical world, and practicality.

If your card isn't any of these, it's a Major Arcana card! These symbolize the greater things, the highest themes in life. These in particular are culturally mythologized enough that any kind of established meanings will probably be the same, no matter what deck you're looking at.

If you do want to look up established meanings, this is a pretty good site, though it'll be most useful if you got a Rider-Waite-Smith card.

Entrants:
Dr. Kloctopussy
Simbyotic
steeltoedsneakers
QuidProQuid
Sham bam bamina!
Fuubi
Thranguy
sebmojo
Sitting Here
Okua
Deltasquid
Obliterati
Fumblemouse
Antivehicular
apophenium
Tyrannosaurus
magnificent7
SerCypher
flerp
Jay W. Friks
Yoruichi
ThirdEmperor
Djeser
CantDecideOnAName
Ironic Twist
Nethilia
Exmond
SurreptitiousMuffin
Aesclepia
BabyRyoga
Maigius
Hawklad
UraniumPhoenix
Chairchucker
spectres of autism

Judges:
sparksbloom
Flesnolk
Hawklad

Entry deadline: 11:59 PM, Friday October 27, EST
Submission deadline: 3 AM, Monday, October 30, EST

sparksbloom fucked around with this message at Oct 30, 2017 around 00:23

Dr. Kloctopussy
Apr 22, 2003


IN

Simbyotic
Aug 24, 2010

THUNDERDOME LOSER


in

steeltoedsneakers
Jul 26, 2016


In.

QuoProQuid
Jan 12, 2012

WHO LOVES BLOOD SODA?
KEL LOVES BLOOD SODA!


I do. I do. I do-oo.


sure. i guess.

Sham bam bamina!
Nov 6, 2012

ƨtupid cat


Gravy Boat 2k

In. I hated my last story as I was writing it and need a palate cleanser.

Edit:

Sham bam bamina! fucked around with this message at Oct 24, 2017 around 09:37

Fuubi
Jan 18, 2015

THUNDERDOME LOSER

Yeah, in.

Edit: And thx for the crit Yoruichi!

Thranguy
Apr 21, 2010

'Read over your compositions, and when you meet a passage which you think is particularly fine, strike it out.' -Samuel Johnson

You know I'm in.

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

yeah gently caress it, in

sparksbloom
Apr 30, 2006



The Chariot (Tarot of the Silicon Dawn)


The Fool (Tarot of the Pagan Cats)

Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007


Blood Empress of Thunderdome

Tap to emit spores


Clapping Larry

hmmmm.....in

Okua
Oct 30, 2016


Hand me a card, I'm in.

Deltasquid
Apr 10, 2013

awww...
you guys made me ink!


THUNDERDOME


In, please.

Obliterati
Nov 13, 2012

Ask me about being the most Magnificent Bastard in EU4 Multiplayer.

Fucksake also in

Fumblemouse
Mar 21, 2013


STANDARD
DEVIANT


Grimey Drawer

In

Antivehicular
Dec 30, 2011

I won a rosette in the Thunderdome


Never done Thunderdome before, but there's a first time for everything. In.

apophenium
Apr 13, 2009

I am a real boy.


In!

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

I failed to submit because I was so excited about New Zealander Tim Price winning the Burghley Horse Trials on the quirky but freakishly talented Ringwood Sky Boy

In

magnificent7
Sep 22, 2005

THUNDERDOME LOSER


IN for the doing.

edit: holy poo poo I thought my entry was in the DMs, but I made it to the HMs. Thrilled to be a bridesmaid not a janitor this time around.

magnificent7 fucked around with this message at Oct 24, 2017 around 13:58

Exmond
May 31, 2007


im doin it ma im writing

THUNDERDOME


6th dm/loss in a row and I have to ask. What does it take to not get a dm?

magnificent7
Sep 22, 2005

THUNDERDOME LOSER


Exmond posted:

6th dm/loss in a row and I have to ask. What does it take to not get a dm?
To save you the hell of a shoutdown - go ask over in the fiction advice thread. They're super supportive and helpful.

But also here:

Crit:

Exmond posted:

A Cop Worth a drat
745 words

“Officer Medenville, the door is ajar.” my car told me as I opened the door to my hover-cruiser and prepared to jump down twelve feet. “The door is ajar.” it insisted while I leapt into the air. “The door is a-”

It goes like this: "I said a thing," said me. (COMMA, close quote, said person.) You've put periods, followed by lowercase letters, kind of undoing your periods? Looks like you've continued this all through the tale, so that's a giant mark. Fix that going forward.

quote:

My cruiser never got to finish its philosophical statement as the explosive drone slammed into it. As I fell through the sky I saw the last object my wife and I had bought together explode in a fireball of metal and past regrets. I landed on the ground and dove behind a large decrepit sign, the letters “WELCOME TO FUNCO LAND!” peeling off of it, and focused on the situation at hand.

“Hah!” The punk laughed as he snapped off a few more shots. Parts of my car fell from the sky, catching one of the badly-aimed laz bolt shots. If you squinted hard enough you could make out a few shining pieces of light reflecting on metal through the smoke; An appropriate enough metaphor for my relationship with my ex.
You've got a semi-colon and then a capital letter this time.

quote:

“Let the girl go.” I yelled, reminding myself why I was here. A domestic dispute turned bad plus one punk on too many drugs to list equalled a hostage situation. And just my luck the bastard had gone to Red-Town, off-limits to most cops. Luckily I wasn’t your average cop, I put lives ahead of regulations.

The punk ignored my instructions and ducked behind a large animatronic dinosaur, dragging a poor girl with him. He started running towards the funhouse entrance, a few kilometres away, hoping to lose me. I rushed after him and a small part of my brain nagged at me that I didn’t have to be here.

Maybe it was the fact that Wendy, my ex, had called me a few days ago. Told me now that the job was ending maybe we could meet up. Or maybe it was the bundle of paperwork that was my achievement for twenty-five years on the force. My career had taken over my life, Wendy will tell you that, but it hadn’t been exciting. Beat cop, walking the streets. Maybe I just wanted to go out with a bang, a heroic rescue; Feel like a cop that was worth a drat.

When it became evident I wouldn’t catch up to the punk I pulled out my Walter-PP7 and pointed it at the funhouse.

“Blast Mode.”

At my command the Walter-PP7 wrapped itself around my arm and extended a good eight feet. The PP7, now looking more like a cannon, let out a slow whine that grew in intensity. I aimed at the funhouse and once the whine hit max intensity I pulled the trigger. My feet skidded across the ground as a large blue blast of electricity shot out of the gun, air rushing past the beam, and hit the funhouse. The funhouse exploded, denying the punk his escape.


“The girl!” I yelled and ducked behind an old bumper car. “My partner is coming with backup. Come out and give the girl and you can walk away from this whole thing.”
Maybe you're missing a word there?

quote:

The punk stepped out from behind a [THE since you already mentioned it, unless there's more than one?] giant animatronic dinosaur, his long white hair billowing around him. Christ, he looked more like a woman than a grizzled , drug taking punk. He was dragging a [THE since you also already mentioned the girl, unless there's more than one here as well?] small girl ahead of him, using her as cover. On her head was a visor and I realized she was stuck in VR space. I stepped out and motioned for the girl with one hand while I unholstered my backup pistol, an old school Ruger, from behind my back.
Now, this is another one of those nit-picky things that'll drive you nuts from crits, but, if she's wearing a VR visor, stuck in VR space, she won't see him motioning?

quote:

“I don't believe you.” The punk said and raised his laz pistol.

I’m not a good poker player, my partner was twenty minutes out, which is why the punk probably called my bluff. What I am is a good shot. The punk snapped a shot off at the same time as I pulled out my Ruger and aimed it. A second later I fired and the punk’s head snapped back in a bloody mess. the girl loosened from his grasp; her VR headset was still on, playing her sweet dreams of summer.
This could just be me. I'm confused. Your MC has an 8-foot walter blast mode gun on one arm and pulls out a ruger? Oh no - you unholstered it in the previous paragraph or two, but here you pulled it out? It's a little clunky but okay, it's just me.

quote:

“The girl was safe.” I thought as the gun fell from my hands. I was a drat hero. The world turned cold; I looked down and noticed the large hole in my chest and the ground rose up to meet me. I thought about Wendy.
That whole thinking to yourself debate - quotes? italics? nothing? It's a sticky one so I'll mention it but it's up for debate, I think.

quote:

I said I was a good shot; never said I was fast.


Flash Rule: I must include two anime tropes
Tropes:
Big loving Beam Gun (Psycho Pass inspired)
Bishonene white haired male

magnificent7 fucked around with this message at Oct 24, 2017 around 14:28

SerCypher
May 9, 2006

Everything has gone horribly wrong

Fun Shoe

in!

Thanks for the crit!

flerp
Feb 25, 2014


in

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Solitair
Feb 18, 2014


JUDGE CRITS FOR WEEK 272
“Lawns Mowed on Time” by Chairchucker
Kind of an amusing trifle. Not really that much to work with, but I appreciate it, and I don’t see any problems in how it executes its modest ambitions. You set up a scenario where someone’s in need of comeuppance, and they get it in a way that makes sense given what’s been previously established. It’s probably going to be one of the better uses of a flash rule this week, too. That said, it doesn’t get much more than a sensible chuckle out of me. Middle.

“Come One, Come All” by derp
I like the filthy imagery in this story, but I don’t quite get the situation here, which might be the point. I don’t know anything about Cuco aside from his imprisonment, contempt for his captors, and desperation. When he steals that one kid’s brace to make a tool to escape with, it looks like he’s hurting someone weaker than him, and then he looks weaker when confronted with the horde outside his tent. His thoughts are unpleasant, but so are his surroundings, and it’s ambiguous whether or not I want him to escape. Mid-high.

“A Cop Worth a drat” by Exmond
“Luckily I wasn’t your average cop, I put lives ahead of regulations.” < This is a comma splice. Use a semicolon instead.

“My career had taken over my life, Wendy will tell you that, but it hadn’t been exciting.” < Em-dashes (alt+0151) would be better here than commas.

What drags this story down most is your flawed grasp of punctuation. There’s multiple comma splices and in one case, a sentence that begins with a lower-case letter. That’s a shame, because those corny jokes about the ex-wife in the beginning did a good job of setting a breezy, police procedural tone. I got more of a Judge Dredd vibe from the morphing gun; I was honestly kind of disappointed to see the flash rules, especially the white-haired bishonen one that added nothing to the proceedings. Mid-low.

“A Trip to Mythmania” by Devorum
This one isn’t doing a whole lot for me. It’s like an abridged Goosebumps story. A kid pisses off a bully who’s written with starkness that could only come from an unfiltered childhood fear, and he pays a terrible price to get that bully off his back. I also don’t understand what happened at the end. Is Terry’s soul trapped in Chad’s corpse? Is part of him brainwashed into thinking he’s the horse, taking his place in the evil carousel? You describe the carnival music as “tinny” and “generic,” which is unfortunately the perfect fit for the story as a whole. Low.

“The Dragon and the Drop and the Tests Therein” by Tyrannosaurus
Another story where nothing jumps out at me as being obviously wrong and yet I’m not feeling it at all. Mi-sun’s announcement that the world will end soon is treated with the same numb distance that Mi-sun treats that rollercoaster. Everything in this story feels like it could be done with a shrug. I get the appeal of underplaying the emotions inherent in situations like these, but this is overdoing it. Somehow, at the end of the world, you focus on people who seem like they don’t have any real problems. Mid-low.

“Upload” by SerCypher
Why did you shift from first person to third person and back again in the middle of the story? I can only assume the narrator is supposed to be Richard. Kind of a big oversight that fucks up your otherwise decent Twilight Zone episode here. Middle.

“Alycia” by Ironic Twist
I don’t know what’s going on here or how this fits the prompt, but your word choices are too charming for me to care all that much. Definitely setting a high bar for prose this week. I can tell this story is going to be divisive, but it has my support anyway.
...at least, that’s what my crit was before the judges confirmed that the prose actually obscures what the plot is. I still don’t know what happened and it’s not something I can brush off anymore. Your words are pretty, but you gotta bring something else to the table. Middle.

“Test of Courage” by Schneider Heim
You did a good job in making me care about this couple, starting with the tattoo description and moving into the distressing scenario Ely imagines. It’s warm and comforting in a believable way, and made me feel slightly jealous of your characters. Mid-high.

“Darlene.” by magnificent7
Having a double swerve on the whole “they’re a ghost and you thought they were a living person” thing was a good idea. The problem is, you don’t seem to know where to end this story. You could have ended right after Darlene claims that Cheese is the ghost, or you could have done more with the narrator being caught between their mutually exclusive claims, but instead you split the difference and had him give up out of complacency. It’s almost like you ran out of words and had to wrap this up quick. Middle.

“Vacation” by apophenium
Another muted, downbeat piece, where the reversal of fortune appears to be that the ghost this man sees… goes away without doing anything to him, at which point his life goes on? Yes, he’s still shaken by the appearance of the ghost, but that’s not a lot to hang a story on. Pretty dull. Mid-low.

“All the Vice President’s Men” by QuoProQuid
You capture this angry rear end in a top hat with a persecution complex pretty well. It’s always interesting to see this sort of historical fiction in Thunderdome. I’m still not that enamored with Nixon, even from the perspective of him being a villain, but I can still kind of appreciate this story. Middle.

“Test Your Strength” by sparksbloom
Kind of a sappy ending, but I relate to this person’s inadequacies, pressing need to get away from annoying people, and fixating on one trivial stupid thing to turn around a bad mood caused by other trivial things. You captured all of that pretty well. Mid-high.

“Refusal” by Flesnolk
You’ve created a fascinating world where everyone is a carnival freak, and while there’s no indication of what significance beards have here, you’ve left enough implications to stimulate the imagination. There’s not much else to the story besides the imagery, but that might be enough. Middle.

“The Last Ride” by Fuubi
Aw, chucks. You probably should have had this story proofread more, because the grammatical errors that keep showing up made this story funnier than you intended. Granted, this seems like a comedy anyway; you’re loving with Glenn’s feelings through Lucy, who is either oblivious to his fear of heights and falling or tormenting him for unknown reasons. It’s timed pretty well, but I would still say this is a legit reason to break up. I’d rate this higher if you got your grammatical poo poo together. Mid-low.

“The Second Happiest Place on Earth” by Fumblemouse
I’m starting to get tired right about here. Decent job and all that, especially making a story with no dialogue. Felt a bit on the nose, edging on meta here and there, plus I don’t get much sense of personality from the characters. Still, the joke works out alright. Middle.

“Stitches” by Chili
Nothing spectacular, but it functions well enough as a “do what you want and be yourself” piece. Middle.

“Break the Gears” by Hawklad
Good descriptions of soul-grinding stuff that the carousel workers had to go through, plus a decent scheme for them to get trapped in. Still not sure who the customers are supposed to be. Did a Medieval Times manager want to take things up a notch or twelve? Are the spectators seeing the same illusions the workers are trapped in? Middle.

“The View from Valhalla” by Thranguy
I asked for comedy and you did a good job with it. I chuckled at least five times, which doesn’t sound like much, but it’s more than what most stories get out of me. Mid-high.

“Necks Door Down” by Pippin
This one’s pretty funny too, though not quite as much as Thranguy’s. Middle.

“Behind the Paint” by Sham bam bamina!
Having the main character be a Juggalo is a great way to get around the “evil clown as protagonist” flash rule, but nothing else about this story works for me. I don’t know who is or isn’t a Juggalo in this story, since you present this without any character in the story commenting on it. It took me two read-throughs to find out where the conflict came from: an angry, unconvincing family full of assholes. No, wait, maybe it’s just from the father, since Jake loves his siblings and they go on the ride alone at the end in the happy ending? That was an abrupt, jarring transition right before then. Overall it’s a jumbled mess. Low.

“The Amazing Victor Steele Amusement Park” by Simbyotic
Because you submitted this so early, I almost didn’t get to it, but I’m so glad I did. At first I thought this was just stilted and generic, which wouldn’t do it any favors, but also wouldn’t put it behind the pack of other ho-hum stories this week. Then I got to the ending, and experienced one of the lamest twist endings I’ve seen in months. Congratulations on being funnier than Thranguy and Pippin this week, even though I’m sure that wasn’t your intention. High on entertainment, low on quality.

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