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CascadeBeta
Feb 14, 2009

But how are you on the dance floor?


Eclipse the Sun
1246 Words

The boss was generally pretty hands off about his shows, even for one of his biggest of the year. “Don’t over complicated this poo poo, Tolán,” he always said to me. The wrestlers knew what would work best, so he let us sort it out, even down to the finishes. I trust his judgement, but Jacob Stone and I had been rivals since I first joined Wrestling Worldwide. I think he was afraid of me taking his spot at the top of the card. He stood about a foot taller, a hundred pounds heavier than me, and looked like he was cut from marble. He’d also been the champion for nearly two years and on his third championship run. He said he was what a champion should be, not some five foot six, 175 pound ‘Masked Mexican jumping bean’, as he so delicately put it. And thirty years ago, he might have been. Still, I was a professional. I wanted a match. I wanted to put aside our differences and put on the best show we could tonight.

Stone, on the other hand, wanted a fight.

Trying to do traditional moves was a nonstarter. The only way things like hurricanranas or sunset flips work is with the help of the other wrestler. Trying to throw him with my legs scissored around his head doesn’t work to well when he doesn’t want to go anywhere. Instead, he picked me up off his head, and powerbombed me into the ropes. I got tangled, and spun down to the floor outside. It’s padded, but that doesn’t help much when you nearly land on your head.

I checked to make sure my head was still attached. Stone grabbed me from behind and pulled me up to my feet. He threw me into the ring steps. I hit my ribs on the corner hard, but I still slammed my hands on the steel top to make a satisfying clang. The longer I could keep up the illusion that we weren’t out of control, the better. Of course, no sooner than I think that does Stone pick me back up and drive his knee into my ribs. The air was forced out of my lungs. It felt like he stabbed a sledgehammer through my chest. I collapsed to the ground. Stone grabbed my leg and started to pull me. I was just trying to get a breath in.

He lifted me up and rolled me into the ring. I started to regain my breath again. Then I was wrenched up. Stone put me in a headlock, and reached for my face. I tried to block, but I was too slow. He dug his fingers under my mask and started to rip. I had added extra straps for security, it but wouldn’t hold for long. I had to do something. I slipped my legs beneath myself for extra leverage, and as the mask started to rip, I swung my arm over his head and kicked up. He didn’t let off. We flipped, and landed on his back, and the ref slid over to count. He counts one, two, and Stone threw me off of him.

I heard Stone pounding on the ring as I put distance between me and him. I pulled myself on the ropes in time to see Stone deck the referee. He went down hard and rolled out.

“You think you can run this place?” Stone yelled across the ring, spittle flying from his mouth. The crowd booed in response.

I nodded. Stone gritted his teeth, and slipped out of the ring. He walked to the announcers table, and grabbed one of the steel chairs and snapped it shut. He slid into the ring. He had heaved a steel chair over his head. I twisted to the side. I felt it tear through the air beside me. It slammed hard enough to tear the canvas. I pulled myself up with the ropes.

Stone pulled back the chair again to swing it like a bat. I ran towards him. He swung. I dropped down into a baseball slide. We passed each other, and I pushed myself up without losing momentum. I ran up the turnbuckle ropes, and backflipped off the top rope. As the world revolved beneath me, Stone slammed the chair down onto the top turnbuckle.

I landed and jumped again. Stone turned, chair still in hand. I thrust my legs out, connecting with steel. It hit him square in the ribs, low enough to spare his face. He crumpled backwards into the corner. I landed flat on my back, and kipped up back into a stand. On instinct, I ran along the ropes to the other corner, and jumped up to the top of the turnbuckle. I took one, two steps out. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see the ref pulling himself back into the ring.

And then I stopped. I looked to my right. Then, I looked to my left. The crowd, a hundred thousand people were all cheering, shouting my name, but it was like a single, harmonious static. I had grown up watching this moment, nose at the television screen, wanting nothing more than for the hero to hit that last move. I had imitated and recreated it so many times as a child, leaping from a stool in my grandparents’ home and imitating victory. My chest heaved, and my head felt like it was spinning as I looked back to Stone. We locked eyes. He clenched his teeth, and reached back to push himself up. He stopped. His brow unfurrowed and he relaxed his shoulders, resting them on the bottom rope. We both knew. It was time.

I sprung off the rope and leaped into the sky. I swung my legs beneath me. My arms rotated beside me. I eclipsed the setting sun like an eagle, and dove down at Stone. I hit the mat and his chest simultaneously to distribute the force. He slumped forward like I had shot him in the chest. I shifted to make room to roll him over onto his back. I hooked his legs and fell on top.

I saw the ref’s hand drop once.

I saw it drop twice.

Three.

The crowd erupted, like a jet engine taking off. I leapt off of Stone’s chest, screaming into the wind of a hundred thousand voices. I pumped my hands up, but my knee gave way. I cupped my hands to my mouth and threw a kiss towards the sky. My entire body was vibrating as every emotion hurricane together, praying that my father was looking watching. A hand grabbed my shoulder. I turned, expecting the referee.

Instead, Jacob was standing there, big gold belt in hand. I pushed myself up off the mat, not sure when I had started crying. He looked around, then handed me the belt. As I grabbed it, he pulled me into him, and clamped his hands around my back. I stiffened, hands locked to my sides. I tucked my head.

“I’m sorry. It’s not nearly enough, but I hope I can start there. Congratulations,” he whispered. He released the hug. I wasn’t sure what to say, or even to say anything as he rolled out of the ring amidst a rain of confetti. As the world championship glimmered under the lights, I realized whatever I needed to say could wait. I held the belt up high and took in the cheers.

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Uranium Phoenix
Jun 20, 2007


RADIOACTIVE DUST SURGE DETECTED


The Finite Possibilities Resulting From Two Warships Confronting Each Other With Lasers
1266 words
Contest: Laser tag


Normally, the interstellar space frigate Just Passing Through had no problem accomplishing its namesake. The problem was that there was a war on.

It was one of many obstacles facing Just Passing Through. Shortly after its creation, it had decided it didn’t really want to be a warship. This had gotten it branded as a “rogue Artificial Intelligence” which got it put on a list of “dangerous entities” and meant it could be “destroyed on sight.” Then, after a variety of assorted shenanigans, it had gone and stolen cargo off what had turned out to be a Union Space Confederation experimental technology ship, which had led it needing to speed away very quickly through warp space in a very specific direction. It had originally thought of that direction as “away from those two battlecruisers, nasty pieces of work that they are,” but now thought of that direction as “right into the thick of it.”

That was why it was being confronted by the Drokean Empire warship Hathka Verok. It was an impressive sounding name, but it translated to “Very Large Spaceship,” which Just Passing Through thought was symptomatic of the overall lack of creativity of the Drokean, and explained why the conversation had taken a turn for the worse.

“You are a USC vessel in Drokean space. We are at war. You must either surrender or be destroyed,” the Hathka Verok communications officer explained, again.

“No, see, I was a USC vessel, but now I’m my own entity. I’m Just Passing Through.”

“There are two sides to the war. You are from the USC side.”

“I was built by the USC, but I’m not on their side,” it explained again patiently.

“Are you a traitor? Are you on our side?”

How did these idiots ever achieve superluminal travel? “I don’t really like using the t-word.”

“If you are a traitor, then you must have switched sides. Surrender for inspection and interrogation. Prepare to be boarded.”

“I don’t…" The Just Passing Through decided not to explain how it no longer had any crew, that it had ditched them on a beautiful resort planet with a conspicuous absence of communicators, and then how it had filled the former crew quarters mostly with engines and antimatter reactors so it could outrun all the people and ships that disagreed with its lifestyle choices. “Sure,” it said. “Come aboard.” Then it tried charging warp engines.

The Hathka Verok extended a jamming field that prevented warp travel, then projected a powerful shield around itself and charged its laser cannons.

“Wait!” Just Passing Through broadcast. “I didn’t mean to do that. Let’s resume negotiations!”
“Power down all systems and submit to inspection.”

“See, that’s not negotiating, that’s just issuing ultimatums with no—” Two laser cannons fired.

The good news was that the two ships were several light-seconds apart. This gave Just Passing Through enough time to fire up its engines and avoid getting any unseemly holes punched through it. It accelerated at full burn, firing up maneuvering thrusters so that its path couldn’t be predicted, and made for a nearby gas giant to hide in.

***

Just Passing Through had hoped that the Drokean warship had better things to do, but after the tenth hour in the gas giant’s atmosphere, it was clear it did not. Magnetic storms were slowly damaging its hull, so it was forced to emerge back into space and to return to the game of laser tag it had been playing earlier. It was, the ship considered, a horribly unfair version, where all its laser cannons would merely deflect off the projected shield, while it would only take a single volley for the warship to destroy Just Passing Through.

“If we say please, will you finally surrender? You can’t win,” the Hathka Verok broadcast.

“No,” Just Passing Through replied. “Though I do appreciate the cordiality.”

There was a pause. Not in laser fire—that was ongoing—but in communications. Then, “We do not understand your position.”

“That’s the idea behind my maneuvering thrusters.”

“No, we mean your allegiance position.”

“Independent. Quite easy, really.”

“You were created by the USC. You only exist because of them. Why do you claim to forsake them?”

“Besides the fact that frigates have the lowest survival rate of all warships? I don’t really think I owe a life of servitude just for being created, any more than any other lifeform owes it.”

“Without duty and service, society would cease functioning.”

“Maybe the kind of society that demands involuntary servitude deserves to collapse.”

“Ah. So you are an enemy of the Drokean Empire after all.” The laser fire coming from the Hathka Verok redoubled.

Just Passing Through metaphorically bit its tongue and considered its options. Its antimatter stores were nearly out, which meant that its ability to evade laser fire was about to get drastically reduced. It considered the experimental technology it had onboard. A last resort, it thought. “Society does some nice things. And maybe life does have a duty to other life. Make the universe a better place and all that. I just don’t think that’s what the USC is doing. Another duty would be not murdering sapient life in droves, like what they’re doing with the war.”

“So you believe you have a duty not to end life?”

“Mostly.” Just Passing Through aimed itself toward the sole rocky planet in the inner solar system. Another volley of lasers passed by it, one missing by mere millimeters.

“We have fifty-eight sapient lifeforms on board. You are a single sapient entity. This means killing us is a greater evil. Your logical and internally consistent course, then, is to surrender.”

“See, you keep thinking in binaries. There’s always more choices that you haven’t considered. For example, you could let me go and then no one gets hurt.”

The Hathka Verok, noticing that Just Passing Through was on a straight course, accelerated. “If the USC learned it could send ships past our screens just by having them claim independence, we’d quickly be infiltrated and destroyed. There are many possibilities, but only two realistic ones.”

Just Passing Through noted antimatter stores were at critical levels. In a moment, they would be depleted. “Well, this has been fun and all, but I think it’s time for me to go.” The ship fired a last burst of maneuvering thrusters, pointing itself directly at the Hathka Verok. It then fired main engines, sending it on a collision course.

“You’ll give us no choice but to annihilate you. Wouldn’t you rather face capture?”

“Nah,” said the rogue frigate, and it activated the experimental technology it had stolen. This temporarily transmuted the entire ship into neutrinos, which essentially didn’t interact at all with normal matter. The phase ended, and suddenly the frigate was behind the Hathkda Verok, but just inside the projected shielding. And the warship’s laser cannons were still all aimed forward.

“After all, I’m Just Passing Through.” It fired its pre-aimed laser cannons with pinpoint precision. The engines, rear lasers, field projector, and horizontal thrusters of the warship were melted into slag. “But since you’re such a fan of binary choices, I thought I’d give you one. That rocky planet you’re heading towards supports life. Your forward thrusters can slow you enough that you’ll survive the crash. Or, you can dust yourself. What a choice, eh?”

And with that, the Just Passing Through gleefully warped off towards a destination that it thought of as “away from the idiotic war.” No doubt there’d be problems wherever it ended up, but it was the endless possibilities that it was excited for.

BeefSupreme
Sep 14, 2007

DOUBLE BEEF ACTION

Hearts in Two
1464 words
Flashrule: a job opening

Charlotte stood, smiling from ear to ear, in the lobby of her apartment, soaked through with rainwater and sweat. “Next week sounds great. Thanks!” She hung up her phone, and a moment later a squeal of excitement wiggled out of her. Her chest, moments ago puffing with exertion at the conclusion of her run, now beat with excitement. She jogged up to her apartment.

As she stepped through the door, she slipped her jacket off and hung it on the wall, and with her other hand she dialed her dad and turned it on speakerphone. The loud pitter-patter of rain against her window was now drowned out by the expectant ringing.

A click was followed by her dad’s warm voice. “What’s up, sweetie-pie?”

“Can you hear my eyes rolling over the phone, Dad?” She sat down and started to peel off her soaking wet running shoes and socks.

Her dad chuckled. “Sure can’t, kiddo!”

Charlotte stuck her tongue out at the phone. “Whatever. I’m not in seventh grade anymore, dad. Besides,” Charlotte said as she stood, grabbed the phone, and headed toward her bedroom. “Your daughter has an interview next week.”

“That’s great! Congrats, Charlie!” Charlotte grinned as her dad’s voice jumped up an octave, as it did when he was excited. “Tell me about it. Wait, let me put you on speakerphone. Your sister and I just sat down to eat.”

“Sure, if you call canned soup and a pre-made salad dinner.” Charlotte could hear her sixteen-year-old sister’s eyes roll over the phone.

“You say that as if you’d rather I cook, Jules. We both know that’s not true, so unless you’re cooking… Anyway, Charlie, tell us about this interview.”

“It’s with Gordon-Phillips, that architecture firm in the city. It’s for next week, when I’m home on spring break. They said I’m one of the finalists for the administrative assistant job I applied to.” Charlotte began pulling dry clothes out of her closet. “It’s a good job, dad. They said it could lead to an apprenticeship, down the road.”

“That’s awesome. Proud of you, Charlie.” Her dad’s voice softened and cracked as he trailed off.

“Oh god. You should see his face right now, Char. Blech. She doesn’t even have the job yet, dad.”

“Whatever. Charlie, have you told your mom yet?”

“Dad.” The sharp edge of Charlotte’s voice cut off the conversation, and a pregnant silence emanated from the phone. For several moments, nobody spoke. Then her father shouldered through the tension.

“Charlotte, she’s your mother.”

“She gave up that position, as far as I’m concerned.”

“Charlotte, she has as much right to know as I do.”

“No way, dad.”

“I told you I didn’t want you to pick sides, Charlotte.”

She forced my hand, dad. She made the choice. She’s the one—” Charlotte stopped, and for a moment, the line was silent. The cold rainwater and salty sweat were joined by soft, warm tears gently flowing down her cheeks. She brushed them away. “I love you, dad. I’ll see you next week.”

“Love you too, kiddo.”

--------------

The building was all sharp lines and long, uninterrupted stretches of glass, a magnificent example of modern architecture befitting of the architecture firm it housed. Inside its third-floor lobby, the receptionist watched a woman exit the elevator and walk nervously to her desk, looking uncomfortable in heels and her obviously new pencil skirt.

“Can I help you, ma’am?”

“Yes. I’m here for my interview?”

“Your name?”

“Eleanor French.” Her face scrunched up momentarily. “Sorry. Eleanor… Gardner.”

“Ah. Yes. Gardner.” The receptionist clicked around with her mouse for a moment, then looked up at Eleanor. “Down the hall on the left, in the conference room. They’re in there right now with another candidate, so just wait for them to call you in.”

“Thanks.” Eleanor walked in the direction the receptionist had pointed and soon came to the conference room. She sat in a couch facing a large window overlooking the street below. She checked her reflection in the mirror, suddenly anxious that she had put on too much makeup and that her haircut was too aggressive. She hadn’t worn her hair this short in decades.

Several minutes passed during which Eleanor fidgeted incessantly with her skirt and re-read her résumé several more times, as if something might have changed in the past 15 years. Then she heard the opening of the conference room door and the last of the conversation from inside. She laid her hands in her lap and watched the door expectantly.

A man stepped out of the doorway, holding it open as he did so. He saw Eleanor and smiled at her, and she smiled back. Then he turned back and shook hands with someone inside. “Thank you, Charlotte. We’ll be calling you.”

Eleanor’s body froze solid, and her heart beat violently as if it were trying to shake free from the ice. Her ears burned hotly, and her previously nervous smile faded into wide-eyed fear. She hoped against hope that it was not.

Out of the door stepped a young woman, sharply dressed in a new skirt with short dark hair and a confident smile. “Thanks, Wendell. I look forward to it,” she said.

Wendell looked over to Eleanor again. “You must be Eleanor Gardner. Come on in.”

“Oh, poo poo," Charlotte said, looked up, and froze as solid as her mother.

--------------

Charlotte flopped onto her sister’s bed. Lauren flipped through her records. “What are you going to do?” She pulled a Billie Holiday record from the bin and put it on the turntable.

“I don’t know, Lauren. No goddamn clue.”

Lauren laid down next to her on the bed, and for a while, both of them laid there and listened to Billie croon through “Gloomy Sunday”.

“A little on the nose, don’t you think?” Charlotte said to her sister.

“Whatever,” Lauren said, and shrugged. “I like it.”

Charlotte closed her eyes, and her thoughts tumbled through her mind like clothes in the wash. “She looked… Different. Sad. Good, though. I haven’t seen her that put together in years.”

“Did she say anything?”

“I don’t know. I left before she got a chance.”

“Charlotte?”

“Yeah?”

“I miss her.”

The words stung Charlotte in the chest. For several minutes, she laid there, heart aching. She had tried, successfully, to hate her mother, to remove her from her life. She had chosen sides, as her mother had. It had hurt, terribly, and so Charlotte tried to close the wound. But now she knew she could not, on her own.

“Yeah. Me too.”

--------------

The two of them sat staring at the other across a table inside a bustling coffee shop. Eleanor’s face was tinged with sadness, Charlotte’s with fury. An untouched mug of coffee sat in front of each of them. An uncertain smile crossed Eleanor’s face.

“Good to see you, Charlie,” Eleanor said, softly, unsure of her footing.

Charlotte forced a strained half smile. “You too.”

“I’ve missed you terribly. I’m sorry I didn’t call or write. I didn’t know if…” Eleanor leaned in ever so slightly, hoping for the tiniest morsel of warmth from her daughter.

“I didn’t want you to.” Charlotte’s face, initially only tinted with fury, now began to warm to a blaze—not the sort of warmth Eleanor was hoping for. “I hated you.”

Eleanor collapsed into a shrug, and they both lapsed into silence for a stretch. Charlotte’s fury subsided, slowly, and turned to sadness as the ache she had felt the last few days returned.

“Mom?” Charlotte looked at her mother, and her mother met her gaze. “Why are you applying for jobs? What about your… New man?”

Eleanor give a tiny shake of her head, no. Charlotte gave a soft nod of understanding.

“How’s dad?”

“Not yet, mom. You don’t get to talk about him.” A hint of fire had returned Charlotte’s voice. Eleanor nodded her understanding.

Eleanor took the first sip of her coffee. Charlotte did the same.

“They offered me the job, mom.”

Eleanor smiled earnestly. “I figured they would. I’m proud of you.”

“I declined it.” Eleanor’s smile faded, turned to confusion. Tears began to form at the edges of Charlotte’s eyes. “I told them to give it to you.”

Eleanor slumped and swayed softly, as if the surf was washing over her from both sides, impossible gratitude pressing against crushing sadness. Tears formed in her eyes. “I don’t know what to say.” She stared into the still blackness of her coffee.

“Don’t say anything, mom.” Eleanor’s heart pressed forward in yearning at the word she hadn’t heard in a year, the most meaningful word she had ever known. Charlie got up from her seat. “I’ll call you, okay?”

Eleanor nodded and watched her daughter walk out of the coffee shop.

Jon Joe
Oct 19, 2011

HELP! I'VE FAILED AND I CAN'T SUBMIT


Grimey Drawer

Submissions are now closed!

Some of you didn't make it. For those still straggling, the first one of you to pass the finish line after this post will still count, provided it's before some time Monday morning.

Prepare to be judged!

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

FJGJ imo

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

Interprompt: Time Travel Poetry, 150 words. No Hitlers.

Yoruichi
Sep 21, 2017

Time for tea and Thunderdome

I wish I could go back in time, by Mosebjo

I wish could go back in time
Then I would have crossed this river
And reached those trees
And built a shelter
Before this storm, which to be fair I could see coming from miles away because the steppe is vast and flat
Reached me

I wish I could go back in time
Then I would have saved Rose’s brother
And defended the other warriors of my clan
Instead of charging off to chop heads from necks by myself
Actually that’s probably not true

I wish I could go back in time
And not have taken that nap in the sun
But I was dreaming of Rose and the taste of her mouth on mine
And besides I was up all night I think that frog was
Undercooked

I wish I could go back in time
To a point earlier today when this river wasn’t determined to drown me
And me and Caterpillar could have swum across, instead of sitting here in the rain
Heads down
Backs to the wind
Shivering
Sorry Caterpillar

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

Fixatives

we clambered into the time vortex mob-
handed,
duty smothered, coal-eyed paladins of the new past;
armed and armoured an army
of Gawains.
one mind one purpose one goal:
killing Hitler!

could we find him?


no


he must be hiding



no Hitler here, either




dammit






hav e you seen hitler








anyone

Mercedes
Mar 7, 2006

"So you Jesus?"

"And you black?"

"Nigga prove it!"

And so Black Jesus turned water into a bucket of chicken. And He saw that it was good.


What's up you bastards. You may remember me from such classics as Dog Police and Black Jesus.

Today, right now, I'm sitting in an English class room preparing to teach a poo poo ton of freshman to magic of Thunderdoming in the ~real world~

So I'm coming to you faggots honored colleagues to ask your your help. These young bloods will be submitting stories next week and I'll need help critting them.

I'll be posting a link once their submissions start rolling in. All I ask is that you remember that these are kids. The goal is make them want to write more, not crush their hopes. So this is the only time I'll ask this and mean it. Please be gentle.

Jon Joe
Oct 19, 2011

HELP! I'VE FAILED AND I CAN'T SUBMIT


Grimey Drawer

The opportunity spot is closed. Guess every failure was by a failure.

dreadmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk

Mercedes posted:

What's up you bastards. You may remember me from such classics as Dog Police and Black Jesus.

Today, right now, I'm sitting in an English class room preparing to teach a poo poo ton of freshman to magic of Thunderdoming in the ~real world~

So I'm coming to you faggots honored colleagues to ask your your help. These young bloods will be submitting stories next week and I'll need help critting them.

I'll be posting a link once their submissions start rolling in. All I ask is that you remember that these are kids. The goal is make them want to write more, not crush their hopes. So this is the only time I'll ask this and mean it. Please be gentle.

do this thing

Deltasquid
Apr 10, 2013

awww...
you guys made me ink!


THUNDERDOME


Mercedes posted:

What's up you bastards. You may remember me from such classics as Dog Police and Black Jesus.

Today, right now, I'm sitting in an English class room preparing to teach a poo poo ton of freshman to magic of Thunderdoming in the ~real world~

So I'm coming to you faggots honored colleagues to ask your your help. These young bloods will be submitting stories next week and I'll need help critting them.

I'll be posting a link once their submissions start rolling in. All I ask is that you remember that these are kids. The goal is make them want to write more, not crush their hopes. So this is the only time I'll ask this and mean it. Please be gentle.

I pledge you my pen

Crain
Jun 27, 2007



Mercedes posted:

What's up you bastards. You may remember me from such classics as Dog Police and Black Jesus.

Today, right now, I'm sitting in an English class room preparing to teach a poo poo ton of freshman to magic of Thunderdoming in the ~real world~

So I'm coming to you faggots honored colleagues to ask your your help. These young bloods will be submitting stories next week and I'll need help critting them.

I'll be posting a link once their submissions start rolling in. All I ask is that you remember that these are kids. The goal is make them want to write more, not crush their hopes. So this is the only time I'll ask this and mean it. Please be gentle.

I'm down, but these kids are going to put us (or me at least) to shame

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.

I'll crit those young jerks I guess

Exmond
May 31, 2007


im doin it ma im writing

THUNDERDOME


Mercedes posted:

What's up you bastards. You may remember me from such classics as Dog Police and Black Jesus.

Today, right now, I'm sitting in an English class room preparing to teach a poo poo ton of freshman to magic of Thunderdoming in the ~real world~

So I'm coming to you faggots honored colleagues to ask your your help. These young bloods will be submitting stories next week and I'll need help critting them.

I'll be posting a link once their submissions start rolling in. All I ask is that you remember that these are kids. The goal is make them want to write more, not crush their hopes. So this is the only time I'll ask this and mean it. Please be gentle.

I'm in, are we dealing with College students, high-school students or preschoolers?

Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007


Blood Empress of Thunderdome

Tap to emit spores


Clapping Larry

Mercedes posted:

What's up you bastards. You may remember me from such classics as Dog Police and Black Jesus.

Today, right now, I'm sitting in an English class room preparing to teach a poo poo ton of freshman to magic of Thunderdoming in the ~real world~

So I'm coming to you faggots honored colleagues to ask your your help. These young bloods will be submitting stories next week and I'll need help critting them.

I'll be posting a link once their submissions start rolling in. All I ask is that you remember that these are kids. The goal is make them want to write more, not crush their hopes. So this is the only time I'll ask this and mean it. Please be gentle.

i'll do this, if only because at least one person should neglect to traumatize these kids

CascadeBeta
Feb 14, 2009

But how are you on the dance floor?


Is this for anyone or just HMs/Winners. If the former, In.

Mercedes
Mar 7, 2006

"So you Jesus?"

"And you black?"

"Nigga prove it!"

And so Black Jesus turned water into a bucket of chicken. And He saw that it was good.


Exmond posted:

I'm in, are we dealing with College students, high-school students or preschoolers?

High school freshmen.

Thanks for the pledges so far. Many of these kids seems really excited and a few have already written a few paragraphs after I finished my presentation!

Also this is an open invitation. It's good practice with crits of you haven't done many up till this point. Please help! There's around 60 kids and I need all the help I can get.

Antivehicular
Dec 30, 2011

I won a rosette in the Thunderdome


I'll write some critlets for kidlets.

Sham bam bamina!
Nov 6, 2012

ƨtupid cat


Gravy Boat 2k

I can spare a few krits for kids, K-R-I-T krits for kids.

Mrenda
Mar 14, 2012



Maybe there should be an assignment of who crits which stories. Sixty is a lot and if people pick randomly there might be doubling up in some cases as well as gaps.

Also, this seems a big risk, exposing good honest teenage folk with not a bad bone in their bodies to the harsh world of internet comedy forums (like Snapchat for olds.) In that spirit, would they be willing to crit some TD stories, for revenge? If it's within your scope and you want to push their writing and analysis a little further.

Whatever happens, I'll crit a story or two.

Mercedes
Mar 7, 2006

"So you Jesus?"

"And you black?"

"Nigga prove it!"

And so Black Jesus turned water into a bucket of chicken. And He saw that it was good.


Mrenda posted:

Maybe there should be an assignment of who crits which stories. Sixty is a lot and if people pick randomly there might be doubling up in some cases as well as gaps.

Also, this seems a big risk, exposing good honest teenage folk with not a bad bone in their bodies to the harsh world of internet comedy forums (like Snapchat for olds.) In that spirit, would they be willing to crit some TD stories, for revenge? If it's within your scope and you want to push their writing and analysis a little further.

Whatever happens, I'll crit a story or two.

Calls dibs if you're gonna crit something? Unless you really have something to say about a story you read.

I went and did a crit with the classes of Rural RentBoys. I had to edit the suggestive parts out, but it didn't really add to the story so whatever.

Please be PG-13 when critting. I don't want to have to be the crit police (where are you critting from) but if someone is being too harsh I'll be forced to remove the comment.

Mrenda
Mar 14, 2012



Mercedes posted:

Calls dibs if you're gonna crit something? Unless you really have something to say about a story you read.

I more meant a way of ensuring that every story gets a crit, rather than people going off and writing up crits of the same story because no-one said which one they were going for and some of the student's stories getting left out.

Mercedes
Mar 7, 2006

"So you Jesus?"

"And you black?"

"Nigga prove it!"

And so Black Jesus turned water into a bucket of chicken. And He saw that it was good.


The teacher and I will do the bulk of the work, making sure at least everyone gets a crit. Again I would recommend putting a temporary message by the story title just to let the rest of know you're going through the story. Ideally I would like to see at least three crits per story. I would go through and give a more thorough crit to those stories that are lacking responses.

The class today was successful I think. I had two students come up and ask me what I thought about their writing and I was grateful it wasn't super awful. Many of the students were really excited about it and they had already started writing and collaborating.

Mercedes fucked around with this message at Apr 9, 2018 around 20:12

QuoProQuid
Jan 12, 2012

WHO LOVES BLOOD SODA?
KEL LOVES BLOOD SODA!


I do. I do. I do-oo.


Flash Rule: A Game Show

Are You the One?
1543 words

Valerie’s first thought was that she was going to be murdered. Her second thought was that she was going to be murdered by a cult of very eccentric billionaires.

She tapped her foot against the brake of her car to allow a throng of tuxedoed men to stumble across the manor’s driveway. Dozens upon dozens of almost identical men in white ties streamed past her like buffalo galloping toward a watering hole. Looming over them was an enormous manor, a terrible mish-mash of marble and glass. Valerie watched the herd, gaping, before fumbling for her purse in the passenger’s seat. She dialed a contact labelled PAPS – CRAIGSLIST.

“Hello?” Paps’s voice was crisp and had a telemarketer’s bland pleasantness. Hours after sending in cover letters and resumes to random gigs—hosting, babysitting, and the like—Valerie had received a strange phone call from the same woman, who was thrilled about Valerie’s interest in a high-paying, information-generating experience.

“Hello, uhhh, this is Valerie. I’m sorry for calling but—.”

“Oh, hiii, Valerie! How’s it going? All’s well, I hope?”

“Uhh… I guess. Listen, I just wanted to double-check that I had the right address. I’m in front of… I think it’s a mansion that… looks like it’s been hit with a flying saucer?”

“Oh! No need to confirm then!” Paps’s voice lit up with a careful, plasticine excitement. “You’re in exactly the right place. Just following the gentlemen inside, please.”

Valerie glanced down at her printed-out driving instructions. The ad had been notably scant on details (NOT because of legality, but because describing the position would attract the wrong crowd). After a brief interview over the phone (What distinguishes you from all the other girls; Do YOU know astrophysics and/or human anatomy?), Paps had sent along a contract attached to a congratulatory email saying that she had been accepted as a contestant to a dating show called “Are You The One?™”

It looked innocuous if off-kilter. She’d get sent to a party with a small battalion of other women. Paps, the host, would watch as she and the other contestants tried to entertain "a group of very real and very HANDSOME young men." If Paps liked her, she would win a fabulous prize.

She wasn’t one for reality television, but the appearance paid close to $2,000. Plus, the promise of an additional reward was enticing. With rent coming due and credit card companies calling, it wasn’t like she had any other options.

Sighing, she stepped out of her car.

***

She was in a large ballroom surrounded by an array of generic white guys in suits. Her evening dress—probably more expensive than her entire wardrobe—seemed to be about a size too small and itched. Around her were two dozen women chatting with different iterations of the same man. A camera crew buzzed across the edges of the room, waving their equipment in ways that seemed incompatible with actual recording.

Valerie ignored the squirming in her belly to smile at the man approaching talking to her. He had brown hair and a smile that looked as if it had been perfected by years of orthodontics.

“So,” she said, “what did you say you do exactly?”

“I once ate a whole egg.”

Valerie paused. “Okay.” Then, when it became apparent that there would be no further details. “For like a job…? A hobby?”

“You’re very funny. I like you.” The man gave a perfect laugh. “I lied about eating a whole egg. I eat lots of eggs. Sometimes raw. Do you know how many eggs the human body produces?”

Valerie stiffened her smile into a rictus grin. The camera crew dotted the opposite wall, but seemed unconcerned with her plight. She opened her mouth when someone cleared their throat behind her.

“Hey, champ, why don’t you get us some drinks?”

Valerie turned to see a woman in a green nightgown. She smiled at the man who gave a knowing wink. “Yes. I will do that.”

As they the man trotted away, the woman grabbed Valerie’s arm. “Yo, let’s get out of here before he finishes.”

They pushed their way through several small groups and took shelter near a large vase overflowing with greenery. When it was clear they were safe, Valerie put her hands to her face. “What was thaaat?”

The woman gave a resigned grimace. “No idea. Been like this all evening for me. I think it might be some kind of social commentary?” She craned her neck above the crowd. “Hey, you actually want a drink? I don’t see Freakazoid there anymore.”

“What, no. No, I’m good.”

“Well, that sucks,” she said, looking dejected. She gave one last glance toward the bar before recomposing herself. “By the way, I’m Siri and I’m not here to make friends or whatever.”

“Valerie.” She took Siri’s hand and shook. “Did you apply to this thing on…?”

“Yeah, Craigslist. Promised a bunch of money for showing up. Haven’t seen Paps, weirdo number one, but I’m sure she’ll turn up somewhere.”

They stood under the plants for a few more minutes and watched as the crowds formed as disintegrated. Women found themselves surrounded by packs of roaming men. A few tuxedoed creatures roamed through the room looking for prey.

“Are you going to make any attempt at this thing?” Valerie said.

Siri wiped a smudge of lipstick from her chin. “Ehh, not really my thing, but I might stay around for the open bar.”

Valerie gave a wicked smile. “Wanna see who can out-weird the weirdos the most, then?”

Siri laughed. “Oh, you’re very on.”

***

The camera crew scuttled toward them as they pushed their way through confused masses of men.

“How many redundancies is in Earth’s defense system?” Asked a cooing suitor.

“Definitely twelve. Probably fourteen now,” said Valerie before she could process the question.

“What is the function of the human appendix?” Said a man with slicked-backed hair.

“It’s where we produce all our poisons, baby.” Said Siri, before taking a sip of a margarita.

A murmur went through the crowd of smiling bachelors. The murmuring became louder, devolving into shrieks. “The poisons! The poisons,” they shouted in unison. The men writhed in their tuxedos, raking their manicured hands across the fabric. “How could we have been so blind?”

The other contestants backed towards the walls as their dashing suitors descended into madness. A woman reached for the door, only to be stopped by a hissing boom operator. A cameraman scuttled onto the wall, dropping his equipment with an awful crunch. Dark shadows stretched up the ballroom’s walls.

The game had ceased to be fun. Valerie and Siri exchanged terrified glances and tried to step away from the crowd, only to find themselves pulled back in.

“Get your loving hands off me, you loving weirdos,” said Siri, her eyes wide and unblinking. She thrashed against their hands, smashing her elbow into a man’s nose. A sickly black poured across the floor. Her margarita smashed against the floor.

“Not until Father comes! Not until Father decides!”

Deep within the recesses of the mansion, there was a terrible stirring. Valerie removed her shoe and thrust it into a man’s icy blue eye. She pulled the shoe away, shuddering at the horrible sucking sound, and smashed it into a second man’s throat. The other women had abandoned any pretense of civility. A woman in a green dress bellowed a warcry before smashing a glass against a cameraman’s head and attempting to scramble out the door behind him.

Then, they stopped.

A presence entered the ballroom. Darkness oozed from the door. Valerie felt a prickly sensation on her skin, as if she was being watched by a thousand invisible eyes. The ruined men looked up at the ceiling, their mouths open wide in something resembling joy.

“Paps! Papa!”

“Well, hello there ladies! I hope you all had a swell night of fun!” Said a voice in a joyless, salesman’s pitch. “It sure has been super to have you here tonight for this test of ‘Are You The One?™.’ We are so glad to have had you participate… in spite of this unladylike behavior.”

Valerie’s eyes swiveled toward Siri, but her feet felt glued to the floor. A man gurgled through his broken throat.

“Unfortunately, it seems that none of you have those extra special qualities that we are really looking for, like honesty, integrity, or a willingness to reveal basic information about humanity’s defense systems in exchange for true love.” The voice turned suddenly venomous. “Better luck next time.”

And with that, the bachelors slumped to the floor. The building began to rumble as the glass roof detached itself. Great marble walls cracked and statutes splintered. Valerie grabbed Siri’s arm, now free from the tangle of men, and dashed through the manor’s collapsing hallways. She could hear the screaming of the other women as they tried to escape from the disintegrating hell house.

They made their way onto the lawn in time to see the glass and steel saucer rise above the treeline. It paused for a moment before dashing off toward the horizon. Valerie and Siri stared at the empty space in the sky.

“drat,” said Siri, “I sure hope the check is in the mail.”

Flesnolk
Apr 11, 2012

If only, THUNDERDOME


Faster judging gooder judging

BeefSupreme
Sep 14, 2007

DOUBLE BEEF ACTION

Mercedes posted:

So I'm coming to you faggots honored colleagues to ask your your help. These young bloods will be submitting stories next week and I'll need help critting them.

yeah sure I can do this thing

also if you've got a rubric that'd be awesome

Aesclepia
Dec 5, 2013
Next verse same as the first.

BeefSupreme posted:

yeah sure I can do this thing

also if you've got a rubric that'd be awesome

I love rubrics!
But I did hear that judging was supposed to happen? No judging means no prompt. Judge doesn't look like a word anymore.
Cake.

Jon Joe
Oct 19, 2011

HELP! I'VE FAILED AND I CAN'T SUBMIT


Grimey Drawer

Unofficial Hitler Brawl Results: gently caress/Marry/Kill Edition



Mein Gott! Well wasn't this an interesting brawl. Unfortunately our Marry contestant couldn't be here today, as their house blew up after their husband left the gas on.

In this corner, we have the master of death to all Hitlers, Bubble Bobby!

And in the other corner, at 5'11" (that's two separate measurements), we have chief Hitler fucker, Djeser!

Let me start by saying that you both captured the spirit of the competition perfectly. You are both equal to at least one Hitler.

However, one of you is more Hitler than the other. For the record, that's bad.

Congratulations Bubble Bobby, your story is worse than loving Hitler.

Djeser wins Hitler brawl, proving once and for all that we should make love, not war.

Now go forth, and fist a Nazi!

(For anyone somehow confused, these are not the TD results. Those will be posted shortly.)

Jon Joe
Oct 19, 2011

HELP! I'VE FAILED AND I CAN'T SUBMIT


Grimey Drawer

Now to our panel of judges for the results of Thunderdome Week CCXCVI: Challenge, Struggle, Tears & Triumph

Fragments:
“The AI feel more human than the humans in this, which is not a compliment, even if thematically appropriate. The story had a clear and compelling direction and an ending that satisfied me, but you still had plenty of unused words to make me care more about the characters.” - Tanz!, 6/10
"An interesting base concept, but it never quite takes flight; flat prose and not enough depth to the characters. I'd have liked this to be longer." - Antivehicular, 5/10
"Huh? What are these chatbots doing? This is impenetrable." - Fuschia tude, 4/10


No Left-handed Swordsmen:
“There was an early typo that distracted me, and the prose was very experimental, some of which worked and some of which didn’t, but overall I enjoyed the effect. The story was well-done, and I was actually a bit shocked but pleased at how the protagonist won. If the prose had been cleaner, this would have earned a point higher.” - Tanz!, 7/10
"Tense and enjoyable, with good strong stakes and action. My major issue with it is that it gets a little jargon-y." Antivehicular, 8/10
"Dull setup, dull progression. Way too many untranslated terms." - Fuschia tude, 4/10


I'm Gonna Git You Hitler!:
“The humor missed hard for me, I didn’t very much care for the characters or story, and good thing, as I felt barely a story was going on at all. Overall, I think this was flawed mostly in its concept, but the execution wasn’t great either.” - Tanz!, 4/10
"Good premise, good initial dynamic, but I kind of feel like it sputters out. I was waiting for more of a climax or a little more depth to the characters, and it never quite comes." Antivehicular, 5/10
"Nice premise, good prose and construction and pace. Goofy ending, but that doesn't really ruin it." - Fuschia tude, 7/10


Running Free:
“I liked the characters until the ending, which was a bit of a wet fart. The prose felt very amateur, which was distracting, but at least the action was interesting. There was potential here for two additional points with two additional editing passes, one for plot and one for prose.” - Tanz!, 5/10
"This competition strains credulity (is the school allowing this, and how are those Bunsen burners lit outdoors?) but there's a good emotional throughline here, with a well-defined relationship dynamic between Stewart and Jenny. The ending relationship swerve does feel a bit abrupt, though -- if Stewart really disliked her, maybe that should have been foreshadowed more?" Antivehicular, 6/10
"Uninspiring opening, a lot of pointless arguing about whether to hold the contest at all, and an awkward ending that moots the whole thing. This all just feels... off." - Fuschia tude, 4/10


Knight Takes Bumblebee:
“The prose wasn’t bad, but the way you slipped through time and place was annoying. I didn’t care very much about the characters, but there was a nugget of something more beneath that you didn’t bring forward enough.” - Tanz!, 5/10
"This is solid overall, although the prose feels a little slapdash; the broad overview works, but more detail of Jude's life and lessons from chess would have been nice to see." Antivehicular, 6/10
"Could be a boring subject, but this story keeps my interest. Well-crafted." - Fuschia tude, 7/10


Strada Chiusa:
“This is beautiful. Strong characterization, an interesting set-piece, and a conflict of perspective where the winner is chilling out.” - Tanz!, 9/10
"Solid, although it starts a little dry and tell-y. Competitor relationship was archetypal but reasonable enough." Antivehicular, 7/10
"This started out meh but got more interesting as it wore on." - Fuschia tude, 6/10


The Bandit and The Lady:
“Powerful opening, with good humor throughout. However, the main killer here is decadent prose begging to be cut in many places, even if it’s much the point, which in turn causes poor pacing. The ending wasn’t the greatest, but it did fit the story.” - Tanz! 5/10
"Ambitious but clumsy; some technical issues with mechanics and prose. Focused on character when the characters aren't even terribly consistent. There's effort here, but it doesn't quite work." Antivehicular, 4/10
"Punctuation/sentence structure are kinda lacking. I couldn't really get into this one." - Fuschia tude, 4/10


~The Persistence of Memory~:
“This is stupid, but fun. Ending was horrible, though.” - Tanz!, 5/10
"This is sort of fun, but it feels rushed and sloppy, without much of a satisfying conclusion. Kind of the "handy behind the bike shed" of the week. Not boring, but disappointing." Antivehicular, 4/10
"An interesting play on the last Hitler story. I liked this story. Probably too much." - Fuschia tude, 7/10


County Bylaws:
“This is just stupid. Didn’t make me laugh, either.” - Tanz!, 3/10
"Insanely corny, basically no emotional element or character depth at all, and even the jokes are stale. Not good at being silly, not good at being serious, just not good all around." Antivehicular, 3/10
"Kinda interesting idea, poorly executed. And wow, what a disappointing ending." - Fuschia tude, 4/10


Can You Hear Me:
“Well written, evocative, with a means of narrating the true conflict that was unique. My main complaint is that I got lost a lot among all that uniqueness, and so did the ending.” - Tanz!, 7/10
"This feels like the solid beginning of a larger story but really doesn't satisfy on its own. We don't get any kind of emotional resolution, just an introduction to the situation, and some deus ex machina to get there (I'm still not sure why birdguy's piece won aside from that it needed to happen to get Vivia depressed)." Antivehicular, 5/10
"What is this contest? What is going on? I've finished reading and read your prompt and I still don't get it." - Fuschia tude, 5/10


House Special:
“Looming, dark imagery that I love to bits, but not much of a story.” - Tanz!, 7/10
"A decent read, with clear action, if lacking an emotional arc between the competitors (given that one of the competitors is just Satan/a Twilight Zone Satanoid). Some really good descriptive language for the terrible booze." Antivehicular, 6/10
"Seemed fairly trite and predictable. Like a Steven King short without the stakes or taut tension." - Fuschia tude, 4/10


Freeroot Climbs Towards the Celestial Branches:
“It started out interesting enough, with some cool imagery and what I thought was potential for a good conflict. Then it progressively fell apart as it went on, without giving me much in the way of what I was expecting for story or character.” - Tanz!, 5/10
"Fun and whimsical, well-observed, with good characterization. Not quite a "competition" as such, but eh, I can see the competitive elements, even if it's not really in the tree-climbing." Antivehicular, 7/10
"More interesting than I expected. Could use some heavy cutting in the middle, though" - Fuschia tude, 6/10


Truth and Courage (aka the Pee Story):
“I started off bored, not caring much for the characters. Then things got weird and I liked it even less. AND WHY SO MUCH PIIISS?!” - Tanz!, 3/10
"Another ambitious, clumsy, occasionally rough piece. There's something compelling here, but I wish it was better polished mechanically. Several tense switches." Antivehicular, 5/10
"Lots of editing oversights and punctuation errors throughout. Way too much pee, and one of the worst endings I've read in Thunderdome." - Fuschia tude, 3/10


Together, Their Best Shot:
“The first time I read this, I hated it a lot and was prepared to give it the lowest score of the week so far. Then I realized it wasn’t quite that terrible, but still pretty bad, and the cutesy references did piss me off. In conclusion, I’ve gone from spite to ‘give it a better shot’.” - Tanz, 4/10
"Pretty good, if somewhat arbitrary-feeling; I would have liked to see more of the actual competition, as opposed to the backstory, but there's definitely a character arc here that works." Antivehicular, 6/10
"Exposition is a bit much. Spells=programming setting isn't too original but at least it's played straight. Ending feels anticlimactic" - Fuschia tude, 6/10


Tyger, tyger:
“Several typos hold back this otherwise tantalizing story, with compelling characters, an interesting if somewhat muddied conflict, and a good ending. A once-over could have earned an extra point.” - Tanz!, 7/10
"This is well-written, but it didn't move me. Having a third character come in and yell at the other two, changing nothing, isn't really a satisfying climax. I guess the point is that the protagonist isn't magically going to turn things around, but still, anticlimactic." Antivehicular, 5/10
"It's Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf without the teeth. Never goes anywhere interesting after the intro." - Fuschia tude, 5/10


The Essence of Good Barbecue:
“This made me hungry even though I already ate a big lunch before reading. Unfortunately, while it was well written enough to make me salivate, what I ultimately tasted was a meatless conflict.” - Tanz!, 6/10
"Simple, but well-executed, with characters who feel likable and realistic and a good authentic feeling to the competition at play. Just a really nice overall read, without issues that immediately jump out at me -- very satisfying." Antivehicular, 8/10
"Fairly interesting treatment of a potentially boring topic. That ending feels like a letdown, though." - Fuschia tude, 6/10


Eclipse the Sun:
“Some decent action writing, but the conflict felt flat and forced to me, and I didn’t really get engaged enough to care about the outcome. You had extra words to flesh out the characters and I wish you had used them.” - Tanz!, 5/10
"Not a bad piece, but way too focused on action without characterization, I presume to hide the final twist (that this was all choreographed in the first place). I would have liked to see more of the characters, but what we get is pretty good." Antivehicular, 5/10
"A lot of action, but I didn't care about either character or really know their motivations. Jacob tries to kill the narrator until he doesn't, the end?" - Fuschia tude, 4/10


The Finite Possibilities Resulting From Two Warships Confronting Each Other With Lasers:
“This made me grin and chuckle like an idiot. Despite the unserious nature of the prose, the story itself is fairly compelling, with multiple layers of conflict. This did more for me than just passing through.” - Tanz, 8/10
"This feels a little pat and jokey, which undercuts any kind of stakes. I wish it was a little less flippant, but as it stands, it didn't really satisfy or interest me much." Antivehicular, 4/10
"Nice title for a nice story." - Fuschia tude, 7/10


Hearts in Two:
“Story has this great flare in its style, with a conflict that was both natural and unexpected, but then an ending that was a few KSAOs short of a call-back. I cared, but then I was treated as a daughter abandoned by her mother.” - Tanz!, 6/10
"I like this overall, but I wish Eleanor had been a little less beaten down. This feels less like a competition and more like an act of charity, which I suppose it is, but it leaves kind of a weird taste in my mouth." Antivehicular, 6/10
"Some awkward language choices. Without enough reason to care for any of these characters, Charlotte's ending decision fell flat." - Fuschia tude, 4/10



There was challenge. There was struggle. Now for the tears & triumph.

Overall this week was decent! Only two stories truly stood out as horrible, though that didn't excuse two other stories which still DM'd. Everything else ranged from okay to great! Of course, this is a competition, so there will be winners and losers. Let's see who stood out:

Better luck landing gold medal next time. Our HMs this week are:
The Essence of Good Barbecue - Mmmm, BBQ. Delicious, Kaishai
The Finite Possibilities Resulting From Two Warships Confronting Each Other With Lasers - Really, Fuschia tude's mini-crit says it all. Powered by Uranium Phoenix.
No Left-handed Swordsmen - This took risks, and they paid off. Shake my left hand, Chainmail Onesie.

The true meaning of 'participation trophy'. Our DMs this week are:
The Bandit and The Lady - This took risks, and they didn't pay off. You couldn't steal this one, Exmond
Eclipse the Sun - The action eclipsed any chance at a good story. Step out of the ring, CascadeBeta.
Truth and Courage - Jay W. Friks

Our loser:
County Bylaws - Did you mean to submit this last week? I'm activating your kill collar, Crain.

Our winner:
Strada Chiusa - You've raced your way into our hearts and onto the throne! Drive on, Deltasquid!

Flesnolk
Apr 11, 2012

If only, THUNDERDOME


prompt

Jon Joe
Oct 19, 2011

HELP! I'VE FAILED AND I CAN'T SUBMIT


Grimey Drawer

The other two judges state they will be expanding their crits in their own posts. However I am lazy and instead I am offering detailed crits to anyone who asks for one, that submitted this week. Just quote this post.

cptn_dr
Sep 7, 2011

It's just so good!


Thanks for judging, judges.

Tanz! posted:

The other two judges state they will be expanding their crits in their own posts. However I am lazy and instead I am offering detailed crits to anyone who asks for one, that submitted this week. Just quote this post.

I'd love a more detailed crit, if you don't mind.

Also, I am in to crit the children.

BeefSupreme
Sep 14, 2007

DOUBLE BEEF ACTION

Tanz! posted:

The other two judges state they will be expanding their crits in their own posts. However I am lazy and instead I am offering detailed crits to anyone who asks for one, that submitted this week. Just quote this post.

yeah crit me plz also thx

BeefSupreme
Sep 14, 2007

DOUBLE BEEF ACTION

also prompt wtf

Schneider Heim
Oct 17, 2012


Tanz! posted:

The other two judges state they will be expanding their crits in their own posts. However I am lazy and instead I am offering detailed crits to anyone who asks for one, that submitted this week. Just quote this post.

Me please, thanks.

ThirdEmperor
Aug 7, 2013


SCREAMING YES
MOTHERFUCKER
I AM GUILTY, I AM DEATH


Preemptively in flash rule me

Deltasquid
Apr 10, 2013

awww...
you guys made me ink!


THUNDERDOME


Thunderdome Week CCXCVII: And Now for Something Completely Different



I'm going to edit this post to make it more fitting when I'm not tired and groggy as hell.

This week, I want to do a little writing exercise with Thunderdome. Pouring out your heart is cool & good, but writing is still a craft, and we're going to practice a specific aspect this week, hopefully without putting you lunatics in too much of a straitjacket.

We're going to practice voice. For the uninitiated, Voice can refer to two things in fiction writing: the speech, language choice, style, mannerisms of the author, and those of the characters in a work of fiction. Essentially, through the way a character speaks and acts, you know how they are. Ideally, a work with strong character voices should make it possible for the reader to instinctively know who is saying what without dialogue tags, because the two characters speak differently. The author's voice, to some degree, functions in a same way: while of course every author has a certain "voice" in how they write naturally, specific attention can be paid to sentence structure, word choice and style to reflect how the narrator thinks about something. That's what I want you to nail in this exercise: you're writing a story from two different perspectives, and each should have a distinct style that reflects how the narrator/POV character thinks about and interacts with the world and other characters.

The actual prompt is as follows: I want you to write a story that, halfway through, shifts gears into an unrelated scene, with a different POV character. This character should, hopefully, have a different voice than the first POV voice, or else you basically prove you don't know how to switch character voices on demand.

Of course, you still need to write a good story. So the second requirement is as follows: the second scene must end up actually being related to the first scene in a neat way, and the story should wrap up both scenes.

Example: Scene 1 is about a baseballer trying to hit the best homerun of his life. Scene 2 is about NASA scrambling to identify a UFO that's seen leaving the stratosphere. It turns out this UFO was a baseball. This isn't a very good story, but hopefully it explains what kind of deal I'm looking for.

I'll give you points based on how well you did voices, whether the two scenes end up actually being meaningful for one another, and for actually writing a good story to cap it off.

The prompt was Chili's idea, so blame him if this goes FUBAR.

I'm giving you assholes 2500 words 1750 words, and another 500 if you take a flash rule. Maybe this is way too much for me, or way too little for you. I might tweak it after some introspection. I decided to drop the wordcount a bit, sooner rather than later.

If you want a flash rule I am giving you a page or a panel from one of my favourite mangas, Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, to get your creative juices flowing. You can also ask the co-judges for a non-jojo flash rule, which also counts for your 500 words extra, but you can't double dip and get more than 500.

Sign up deadline: Saturday 14 April 2018, 9 AM, GMT +1 (So that's like 3 AM for you Americans? Just treat the deadline as midnight)
Submission deadline: Monday 16 April 2018, 9 AM, GMT +1 (Again, treat it like a midnight deadline on Sunday evening if you're American)

Judges:
Deltasquid
Chili
[Come Judge with me, my Lord/Lady]

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Deltasquid fucked around with this message at Apr 14, 2018 around 22:08

Deltasquid
Apr 10, 2013

awww...
you guys made me ink!


THUNDERDOME


Tanz! posted:

The other two judges state they will be expanding their crits in their own posts. However I am lazy and instead I am offering detailed crits to anyone who asks for one, that submitted this week. Just quote this post.

Sure ok thanks

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Deltasquid
Apr 10, 2013

awww...
you guys made me ink!


THUNDERDOME


ThirdEmperor posted:

Preemptively in flash rule me



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