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Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


first prompt of the new year ho boy



Time travel.

“It's too important to use only for money, but too dangerous to use for anything else."

2018 words.

sign ups close friday midnight est
subs close sunday midnight est

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Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Judges:
Me
Apophenium
Djeser

Writers:
Sitting Here
Antivehicular
Thranguy
Flerp
Sparksbloom
Jay W. Friks
Dr. Kloctopussy
Derp
Sham Bam Bamina
Yoruichi
Sandnavyguy

Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at Jan 7, 2018 around 19:06

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


New year. New you. You said you'd write more in 2018. Do it. Ten hours left to sign up.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Sign ups are closed.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19




submissions are closed

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Week 283 Judgment

This was a good week.

Thranguy wins. Antivehicular hms in a close, highly-contested second place finish. No one dms because everyone else wrote pretty good stories. Unfortunately, Jay W. Friks loses because someone has to and Hunt the Lines was guilty of incomprehensibility in a strong week. Sorry Jay.

Keep the throne warm, Thranguy.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Crits.

Because I’m an insane person, I always four or five prompts sitting off in the wings. This was… maybe my least favorite of the crop but it felt too terrifically apropos to pass it by. New year and all. I'm glad I didn't pass it up.

To be frank, I toyed around with the wording of this prompt a great deal. I thought about listing pitfalls and traps I wanted everyone to avoid but I’m glad I didn’t. I didn’t need to. You all wrote interesting stories that avoided the stereotypical problems one might expect from the genre without the need for me specifically directing you to do so. Even the new blood did alright. Also, amazingly, only two stories were even particularly similar (a deal with the not-devil that ultimately ends with being devoured). Simplicity in a prompt is something I may or may not consider going forward.

Anyway, thank you for the stories. Here are my crits. As always, if you feel the need to respond to them here in this thread, don't.

Sandnavyguy
I have a handful of issues with this.

First, you wrote a lot of unnecessary words. I’ll be interested to see (assuming you come back) how you deal with a smaller, more reasonable flash fiction word count. With this story, a significant portion of what you have written has very little to actually do with your story. It’s just set dressing. It’s just waxing poetic about alleyways and clothing and blah blah blah. Lets look at a couple of sentences, shall we?

“A cat darted out from behind the repulsive alley dumpster and into the dark yet busy street in the distance ahead as the man kicked an empty tuna can. As it rebounded with an audible snap against the graffitied wall, the drunk but well-dressed businessman paid no attention to the scuttling and scurrying in the shadowed edges of the passage.”

What is important here? By which I mean, what is important here to your story? We learn in 60 words that a man, some random man, is drunk. He is in a dirty alley. There is a nearby busy street. There is also a cat and an empty tuna can. This is your opener. We don’t know, though, who this man is or why he is drunk or why any of this is important. Much of which either isn’t important (the cat, the tuna can, the dumpster, the traffic) or could be better couched somewhere else in your story (he is a well-dressed business man, he is in a seedy location -- both implied/brought up with working at a firm). Also, read those sentences out loud. Do they read easily? Do they not feel jumbled in your mouth?

On top of that, your story doesn’t actually get interesting until we hit 672 words. That’s right around when we learn that the randomly irish guy can read thoughts. That’s nearly a third of your story! Until that point, it’s all bullshit about some drunk businessman. Now I’m sure you’ll initially argue that it’s very important to set up the tragic story of the drunk businessman because no no no just stop. It’s not. There are plenty of stories about drunk businessmen who lose everything. You could get that across in one sentence. When crafting a story, you need to figure out what makes your story unique, interesting, and specifically different from the ten-thousand other ones like it. And, in this case, that component is mysteriously irish man and his deal. It’s not good enough to simply be able to string together pretty words. Your words, all of your words, need to be focused towards a singular point -- that of telling a very specific story. Set dressing is only important if it adds something important. Did the or the tuna can or even the description of him falling add something important? No. This story is about a deal that lets you reset time. Make your story about that. Make it about that dilemma. And let me, your reader, know what I’m getting into way way earlier. Don’t make me read a third of your story before letting slip what’s actually important/interesting here. Don’t waste words.

Lastly, you have some weird internal inconsistencies. Holes. Why did the mysteriously irish man take out David’s wallet and then give it back to him? Why does he care if David should be more specific? Why was he irish? Why include dates if you only use them twice and they’re not important to help your reader keep track of the timeline? How did Gary remember the last words of the deal if “You will retain no memory of this transaction?”
For the record, don’t respond to crits in thread. These are all questions for you to personally ponder. Welcome to Thunderdome.

Yoruichi
I really liked this. Your last line is very sweet and it pulls the piece together in a nice way. I think you should have waited another day to submit though. It just seems a little unpolished. Maybe sleeping on it and looking again with fresh eyes could have been helpful.

I think you should have started with: “My name’s Liam,” he said, extending his hand. She raised her eyebrows in surprise, two sharp arches over dark eyes.

“Didn’t they warn you not to talk to me?” she said. “I’m a witch.”

Your catalyst for conflict needs to be tweaked just a hair. Like, “You think that time flows at your own pace, well it doesn’t, and it won’t wait for me, or for you” is a really nice line. But we don’t really work our way to it. Liam didn’t know that he was coming home late because Yvette only just discovered that her grandmother is ill. I’m also not a huge fan of random circumstance creating conflict. Or, rather, random circumstance being the major/only source of conflict. It’s much better when it’s a conscious choice by the character. So maybe she tells him that she really needs to leave but won’t say why. And she does this is a couple times and he keeps telling her no no no wait wait wait because he’s working to pay off the ring. She chooses. He chooses. Etc etc. Better than him getting a little prematurely tipsy in celebration and that random night just happens to be a night where Yvette has to loving leave right loving now arrghhhh

I love that you play around with the prompt. It’s never super clear if Yvette is actually magical or actually has the powers to affect time. The implication is more greater conceptually, contextually, vis-à-vis their relationship. I just love that. Well done.

Derp
loving. Rad. Opening. Love a good pencil to the brain. Well done use of the date/time markers. It’s a bit risky to spend so more time describing the monotony of 82 seconds but it totally works here. I never get bored with it. I’m always invested. It just keeps feeling fresh. Which is neat. The only time you come off the tracks a bit is at the end with the woman. What she is, how she’s different, and how she changes your protagonist’s situation is unclear. Also, I don’t think you knew how to end this story so you just kinda… did. Overall, very good though.

Thranguy
Sharp, crisp writing. Good voice. Quick dialogue. Interesting concept. Overall very, very good.

Problems: Mr. Carr’s crimes feels a bit of a red herring. Martin “concealing a smirk” undercuts both his outrage at “you pathetic liar” and the protagonists reasoning for hooking up specifically with him. It is unclear when exactly she got to “[know] him that well, [know] how he felt about us locals.” In my opinion, you shouldn’t have capitalized Killing Fields -- I think it makes too specific of a reference. Alternatively, maybe bring it up earlier as something they lament not being to fix this jump for lack of power I don’t know. It’s a cool line it just sticks in my craw for some reason. Also, the ending is super abrupt and a little disappointing given how fun the rest of your story was. Killing your protagonist feels like a disservice and is one of the more uninteresting choices you could have made.

Jay W. Friks
As I said in my judgment post, what doomed you here was incomprehensibility. We struggled, I struggled, with several major facets of your story. Foremost being that the setting is extremely unclear. I have no idea where or when it is supposed to take place. At first, it felt very pseudo-Lord of the Rings and then a Gatling gun shows up and I just have no idea what's going on. Naming conventions felt haphazard (Lord of Veng, Master Thane, Elizabeth, Shade, Emilio) and that furthered my confusion. Is there a difference between Wolf and wolf? Are they the same as the Shade? There was clearly something interesting going on and I think you had a very vivid picture in your mind while you wrote this. But it didn't make it from your brain to mine.

Flerp
Things I liked about this: it's in second person, it's about a robot, it follows the prompt, it clips along and I didn't get bored, I just generally kinda think the concept is cool.

I'll go into greater detail regarding the things I didn't like. Going second person with a non-human entity is an interesting, bold choice (and one that I'll probably steal to be quite honest). The more I think about it the more I like it. It gives you the ability to juxtapose an alien sentience with your reader's own human experiences and let your reader really feel just how foreign/familiar this other being truly is. How other it is. You missed the mark, though. It would have been cool to let the reader, the human, bear the emotional burden of Genesis's bloody calculus. You shouldn't force it. But you forced it. I would have liked a little more matter-of-factness. A little bit more robot in the robot.

Why did you choose to kill your main character off? I'm not typically a huge fan of swinging in a death at the end of a story. And, truth be told, I was expecting a little deus ex machina. You'd certainly foreshadowed it. Sending people back in time. Ending right before the sun explodes. The explicit desire to be a hero. I thought you were setting me up for an ending where mankind made it safe, fixed things this go round, and when Genesis regains "consciousness" it does so in the face of a better world. But maybe you just wanted to avoid loving with loops and paradoxes.

Antivehicular
Conceptually speaking, this was probably my favorite of the week. Someone complained that it was a little exposition heavy-- which it was-- but that didn't bother me. It stayed interesting. And you wrote it in such a way that the exposition felt (was) vital and meaningful and important to both the story and the plot. I think you needed more words, though. Like, maybe 600-1000 more words. You just didn't have the space to fill out Agnes's character. And you ran out of time so your ending was squished and overly simplified.

"Idiots think a closed timeline means room for fuckups, but just because nobody ever finds your body doesn't mean you get out of this alive." That's such a great line.

Sitting Here
One judge thought this was maybe worth dq-ing since it played a little fast and loose with the prompt but I thought it was fine. I like a little flexibility as long as it's well done and using memory as a time travel device is a cool enough concept for me to roll with it. One judge called this "the most human on the stories this week" which is probably true. I found this to be emotionally resonant but... a little thin. Like, you're dealing with some rather deep, rather intense concepts but maybe not to the degree or depth you really needed to in order for this to fully hit. Good concept. Good characters. Could use a little more knowledge of the setting.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Jay W. Friks posted:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1NZ...iew?usp=sharing

A narration of Marvel at the Forest by Tyrannosaurus from Yellow week.

Rereading it during my Yellow crits made me appreciate this story even more so I thought I'd give narrating it a go.

Well that's a first. Thanks.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


this is what happens when there is slow judging

fast judging good judging

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19



free crit by me, tyrannosaurus
this is good humor guys take note because djeser IS a judge but he is neither fast nor good

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Secret Santa was cool. Would do again.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


This sure is some slow judging huh

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


I'm in and I'll take a flash rule thank you

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Faith
1464 words

Archived.

Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at Dec 25, 2018 around 19:15

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Glub glub
200 words

"Glub glub," Richard Parker said.

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

"Glub glub," Richard Parker said.

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

"Glub glub."

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

"Glub glub."

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

"Glub glub."

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

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


In honor of our esteemed head judge Antivehicular, I give to you your interprompt:

"Someone is staunchly and weirdly anti-vehicle. Why?"

150 words.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


apophenium posted:

I'll fight Exmond. Anime must be banished from the Thunderdome.

up if you dare Exmond

Exmond posted:

Anime must stand strong!



Errr, can we make deadline the 24th? My weekend is a bit busy.


Poor Madison died and has become a ghost. She'll never find true love now. Or will she?

Feb 24th at high noon est. 900 words.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Thranguy posted:

Interprompt: Explain a joke.

250 words. As if interprompt wc matters.

Beethoven's Favorite Fruit

No, you have to say it right. You can't just say banana you have to say it like this: banana. See the difference?

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Salem 1692, please

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Apophenium
You kinda swerved on me there in the middle. This story isn't about Madison. It's about the neckbearded Ghoul King and his inability to understand love. Did you run out of time? It feels like you ran out of time. This story lack cohesion. It's just little snippets cut out and glued haphazardly back together. The beginning meanders as you find your footing. It gets interesting around "now let me paint." Cut everything before that section and jettison or recycle it later.

Exmond
Okay so dumb things here:
1) "Her ward needed her now and she would be damned if she wouldn’t try her best." Unnecessary and messes up the cool set up you did with the preceding sentence.
2) "let out a frustrated sigh as her hand passed through the child" What? Did she forget she was a ghost?
3) The phone thing feels out of place. If you're trying to do some dichotomy timeline poo poo of a modern girl and an oldschool teacher it didn't work. Cool idea. But it didn't feel modern except for the phone and then the phone just felt out of place
4) She can't touch the girl but she can make biscuits and tea? How?
5) I'm pretty chill with prompts but man this isn't really about poor Madison being dead and finding or not finding love now is it?

Smart things:
1) Your use of language is much improved. Lots of little things "She did not speak as a teacher would to a student, nor as a parent to a young child. She spoke as a lady would speak to another lady. With respect and grace." Very good

Apophenium wins

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


The Covenant
1478 words

Archived.

Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at Dec 25, 2018 around 19:17

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

oi ya fuckin drongo leave Jimmy Barnes alone he's a national treasure

Intreprompt crit: I know you love trying to be avant-garde and everything but I still think you should title your pieces.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


I'm neither Antivehicular or Unfunny Poster but seeing how long judging took y'all will be waiting until July for crits.

Here are some free ones from me.

1. Chainmail Onesie
Something I liked: This felt like a complete world. Or rather a smaller part of something grander. That’s cool. Lunar/Earther, hardsuit, etc etc I get the feeling that this is very well realized in your head. Have you written in this world before?
Something I disliked: I have no idea what’s going on. You never manage to move things from your mind to the page in a meaningful way for me, the reader. Plot, story relationships, it’s all esoteric
Where I got bored: I read the whole thing because it kept teasing me with a reveal that never came, an understanding of story/plot that never materialized

2. Lazy Beggar
Something I liked: “It’s loving baltic” is a hilarious line and I’m probably going to start using it real life so thank you
Something I disliked: Oh, gently caress, accents, okay. See below.
Where I got bored: “A’need to get ma maw’s laptop.” But, really, my eyes glazed over at “Talking about nae gud, you’ve got snow on yer coupon, ya wee jakey stinkyhole.” I make this mistake sometimes as well: I know how to say something really well with an accent but it doesn’t actually add anything to the story. So it’s just dead weight. But you don’t want to cut it because it… I dunno… adds authenticity or some bullshit? Cut out the bullshit (I should also take this advice)

3. Deltasquid
Something I liked: Spy poo poo. I love spy poo poo. More specific to your actual story, though, the code phrase stuff was cool. It was a fun line to follow through the story.
Something I disliked: Oh boy where to start. You know what, I’ll just go with the big one. You flip perspectives way too many times. We’re seeing things from different character’s perspectives, hearing different character’s thoughts. It’s very Guy Ritchie. Which isn’t a bad thing. I like Guy Ritchie. But you don’t make it easy to follow. The action and the characters and the relationships get confusing and that’s a bad thing. Complexity is cool but you have to make sure you pull it off. Make sure every character is very easy to distinguish.
Where I got bored: “Youssef recognized his ex’s shrill voice.” I didn’t get bored here exactly but this is where I went “oh motherfucker goddamnit” because poo poo was getting more complex but nothing was getting properly fleshed out to warrant it.

4. Thranguy
Something I liked: This is so loving weird in the best way. Lots of little details. The brother-sister stuff. Too good looking to be just a Mayor. This will HM or win.
Something I disliked: idk. I couldn’t tell that the main character was female until “pretty face.” Not really a big deal but it was something that popped up. Doesn’t that count?
Where I got bored: I didn’t.

5. Apophenium
Something I liked: Pretty solid motivation. Good pacing.
Something I disliked: This should have been in first person. You wanted to. I can tell. You’re akready giving me one character’s (Bobbi’s) thoughts with things like I must be in shock or All I want is for you to apologize for killing Todd. I wrote half my story this week in third and then realized it would be better off in first and went back and changed everything. Also, you know what, this would have been a cool place to start: “I got a new job now, Bobbi, a union job. I could give you everything you want!” Then give me the apologize line. Bam. Now that’s a hook. Your current opener with the blood and gore and such isn’t bad or anything but man you have an opportunity to really grab me. Make we want to learn more about what’s going on.
Where I got bored: I read the whole thing.

6. Crain
Something I liked: Silas has now killed x things. I dig it. Good through line.
Something I disliked: Lots of little stuff. Unnecessary stuff. “They were currently standing among” should just be “They stood.” And a lot of the conversation was unnecessary and could be cut down to a single sentence-- especially since you’re writing in third. I think you should start with “Silas had now killed something in Antartica.” Then explain why that’s a big deal. Then explain why he did it. Better opening. Better hook.
Where I got bored: All caps. All caps always make my eyes glaze over.

7. cptn_dr
Something I liked: This is just, conceptually, hilarious. Calligraphy Con. Inkheads. Vultures at Papermate. Lots of little poo poo I dig. It’s cool.
Something I disliked: You wrote a bigger story than you had the wordcount. Snippy dialogue but to make space for the comedy you lose characterization. The colonel is basically just a stereotype.
Where I got bored: Nope. Clipped right along through the whole thing.

8. sparksbloom
Something I liked: Solid economy of words. “They say internship purgatory ends eventually, but I’m not sure I believe them.” “She’s not wrong. She’s been our third boss in six months.” “I’m an adult but not a mom, so I actually fit in pretty well in the back room.” You use very little words and still manage to paint a vivid picture. That’s good.
Something I disliked: It’s not Thranguy’s? This sucks to say but, unfortunately, your story is so similar to his that it’s hard not to compare them. And yours is good but is a little sillier without being quite funny enough to overcome the difference.
Where I got bored: I didn’t.

9. BabyRyoga
Something I liked: Good blocking. Easy to follow action.
Something I disliked: So is Monkeyland the name of the town or...?
Where I got bored: I didn’t.

10. Tyrannosaurus
Something I liked: Now this is good writing. Killer dialogue, creepy plot, nailed the setting. Great use of voice. Just great. I loved reading this. My personal choice for the win.
Something I disliked: Too short? I don’t know what else to say.
Where I got bored: Never.

11. CascadeBeta
Something I liked: Likeable, interesting characters.
Something I disliked: Pet peeve -- I hate when people do the “okay tell me the plan again” thing because it’s just for the benefit of me, the reader, not the character actually needing to hear it again. You wrote in first person. Just tell me the plan. Also, the plan is unclear. Motivation is unclear. Everything at the end (action, blocking, etc) is unclear. This got messy quick.
Where I got bored: Didn’t.

12. QuoProQuid
Something I liked: Nice description of the dead body. Nice characterization of the people and the town. Nice reveal at the end.
Something I disliked: Action gets kinda muddy when the brothers showed up.
Where I got bored: Didn’t.

13. sandnavyguy
Something I liked: Believable motivations, likeable characters
Something I disliked: This isn’t poorly written. More like… I don’t know… Poorly explained? There are a lot of characters and they have similar names and it’s not always easy to tell who is who or who is talking. And there’s some unnecessary stuff. Treat your words like they are money. If you’re going to spend that much on cat stuff in the beginning, it should have a payoff or callback at the end, yeah? If it’s just a throwaway… throw it away. Also, gun jamming seems a little too deux ex machina.
Where I got bored: Didn’t. Though my eyes glazed over a bit around Old Man Lestrada.

14. Hawklad
Something I liked: This was nuts. Great blend of horror and the absurdism of suburban living. “None of the new residents were in violation of the association covenant.” “Oakview estates was being reduced to pet food and fertilizer. And all under his watch.” Conceptually hilarious to me.
Something I disliked: The Daddy Saddles doesn’t really fit. And the descent to madness and despair was too fast.
Where I got bored: Didn’t.

15. Fuschia tude
Something I liked: Short and sweet and easy to read
Something I disliked: A little heavy handed. Oh I raised you as a boy blah blah show don't tell etc etc
Where I got bored: Didn't

16. Chairchucker
Something I liked: ??? and ?!!!. The quirkiness. The humor. The way it zipped along.
Something I disliked: The skeletons. Not a fun reveal for me.
Where I got bored: Honestly, the skeletons again. It just felt like: lol im being zany

17. Bad Seafood
Something I liked: Nice use of voice
Something I disliked: Again, sometimes when people write in accents they leave in poo poo they should cut because they think they wrote it really well. Like, in the accent. Careful of that.
Where I got bored: Didn’t.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


In.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Mine is the Blood of Wolf and Deer
1500 words

Archived.

Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at Dec 25, 2018 around 19:17

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


I’m not a judge this week but here are some extra crits I wrote anyway. Instead of thanking me for writing them, read someone else’s story and give them a crit of your own. Especially if they are fresh blood.

Flesnolk
Something I disliked: It is important to determine when to withhold information from your reader and when not to. “On the fifth day his sleep ended when an almighty force rose under his boat and nearly capsized it.” This whole paragraph is a descriptor for an unknown entity. Why not reveal that it is a whale from the from the very beginning? “Silent and monolithic it” to “Silent and monolithic the dead whale.” I guess what I’m trying to say is… work on your timing? Be more intentional? Yes, that’s it. Be more intentional. Of course, this is the last submitted story so there’s a possibility you were just racing the clock idk
Something I liked: When you do time things right, your descriptions are subtle. Haunting. They hint of something more with very few words. That’s hard to do. “A featureless child tall enough to be his.” “... as well he knew he had nine fingers left.” “It was already cooked with flesh bubbling and blackened from firefall.”

Doof
Something I disliked: ho boy alright so there is the possibility that you’re going to win with this and then my critique is going to look kinda dumb but here we go: the quality is all over the place. When you relax and let your words go to work then it’s really, really nice. “He placed the bottle on a cinder block. There were always a few cinder blocks.” “I lived my life for you. If that's not enough, I don't know what is.” These are good. But then you get in your own way a lot too: “Felix was a long, thin man, almost spider-like, but his eyes betrayed a closeted warmth. He wore a priest's cassock and carried a bottle.” “You've been a shadow all my life dad. Ever-present but...undefined. I don't know anything about you dad. I'm grateful but you're just this hazy shape.” These feel so clumsy it’s almost disorienting. Overly wordy. Rushed.
Something I liked: Like I said above, when you’re on… you’re on.

Tyrannosaurus
Something I disliked: This is difficult subject matter regardless of how it’s approached.
Something I liked: Everything. All of it. A well written, multi-layered piece that I’m glad I had the opportunity to experience. Thank you.

BabyRyoga
Something I disliked: ALL CAPS SCREAMING I DONT LIKE ALL CAPS SCREAMING. Personal preference.
Something I liked: There's a good chance you'll eat a dm on this. And I can see why. There are definitely problems. You switch character perspectives which is very difficult to pull off well. And you do it in a 1000 word story. And you switch from first person to third person when you do it. You also write from the perspective of a damaged mind which is likewise difficult to nail. And you take a long time to let your reader know exactly what's going on. With all that being said, though, I like your story here. I think you tackle a complex concept. I appreciate that you approach a damaged character with grace. And, when I reread it, I think your voice for Jasper is well-done. Well-written. Your weakness comes from the slight unbelievability in the reaction of the two other men. If Vince is homeless and harassing other guests, he's probably going to be escorted off. That's just the way the world works. I like that the men are kind and see him as harmless. Take away Vince's aggression towards other patrons. Maybe make him the senile old former caretaker or something. Give him a relationship to your other characters. I wouldn't dm this. That last mental image of him setting with “deep existential dread” is rad.

Antivehicular
Something I disliked: idk maybe the title is a little too on the nose?
Something I liked: Short and sweet and second-person

Thranguy:
Something I disliked: The ending feels weird. I think you had to force your story to end the “right” way so it would fit the prompt.
Something I liked: Great hook and never lets go

Lazy Beggar
Something I disliked: You couldn't do what you wanted here with the word count you had. There is too much background information to crunch through and not enough space to let it breathe. Too much stuff that needed to be described but not enough words to do it well. Everything gets shrunk. You should have toxxed for the extra 750.
Something I liked: Weird space sci-fi stuff? Always a fan.

Jay W. Friks
Something I disliked: Pacing is weird in the beginning where you searched for your footing. Post surgery everything picked up. The dialogue isn't particularly great. “I trust you” should be apart of the paragraph above it.
Something I liked: Just a loving dope concept. I love the madness. I love this story.

Unfunny Poster
Something I disliked: You choreographed a fight. That's kind of boring. There needs to be something more to a character's motivation than "I've trained so hard for this!" Something personal. Relatable. Think about professional wrestling. There is always something more to a given fight than just two grown rear end men playing grab rear end, right? You gotta give your reader something more. Give us a story.
Something I liked: No Sleep 'Til Brooklyn is a good intro song.

Plus one more for the disqualified
Apophenium
Something I disliked: This should have been your opening: "Some literature pointed to a total resurrection à la Lazarus, awakened in a tomb back to his own flesh, as if from a slumber. Yet others whispered of returning as a ghost, to witness actions left interrupted by death. Dalton was resigned to either, though the former would be more fulfilling. What good being back with your dogs if you couldn’t pet them or feel their clumsy kisses?" That's funny and engaging. All the poo poo before it is unnecessary. Always always always go back and cut your unnecessary openings.
Something I liked: The dog names made me laugh. I liked when we got to the actually planning part. I liked how Lucifer's sands gently caress with what you want.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


In with a flash.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


I'll take another flash rule.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Stupid Punk
1598 words

Archived.

Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at Dec 25, 2018 around 19:18

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


I don't know what's going on but I know I don't like it

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


fcgc thanks chili you're a g

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Edward the Confessor. The Patron Saint of Kings.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


I am the King of Crete
1200 words

Archived.

Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at Dec 25, 2018 around 19:18

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Interprompt

Poetry is dumb. 100 words or less. Go.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


I don’t know anything about saints. So, in the spirit of fun, I’m going to try to guess your saint’s patronage based off what you wrote.

Anthony of Padua; patron saint of unnecessary apostrophes in names, spacemen, archaeologists, insects
Something I disliked: This is an interesting story for me to start off with because I like and dislike so many of the same things simultaneously. I think maybe the best way of describing this story is... you're like a figure skater who does a sick loving spin but wobbles on the come down. "He was followed by Pope Celestine VI, then Celestine VII, then Celest’urk I." This is cool and subtle and good. And one of the two mandible inclusions would have been nice but two was overkill, especially so close together. Your opening has some beautiful imagery ("their panels still extended like the tattered wings of angels") but for some reason I had a difficult time figuring out what was important/going on. I think because you cram so much information in there at the same time-- the existence of a mission but not its purpose, a complicated character name, an ominous sounding "age,: a series of fancy adjective+noun sciency items. It takes until mandibles for it be clear that a character isn't human but even then I'm unaware for a bit that Dyz is also a bugperson. Milky eyes could be human -- perhaps make it multiple eyes or something? I dunno. And I didn't like all the apostrophes until we got down to the pope and I realized it was a naming convention and then I was like, oh tight that's cool. There's something you could do to clean all that up but I'm not sure exactly what without doing a really, really deep rearranging. I don't know if "hiding" the fact that they were aliens did you anything. The interesting thing about this story is that they ARE aliens, yeah? Also, the map thing was way unclear. The way you wrote it I was expecting it to be a CD and there to be some silly song -- probably John Denver's Take Me Home, Country Roads -- that the bugpeople are amazed by, close their eyes, sway to, enjoy, listen, take as Gospel. Let them keep searching for Earth.
Something I liked: ah gently caress poo poo I hosed up my own self-imposed crit format. whatever. see above

Saint Veronica; patron saint of photographers, funerals, teenage pregnancy
Something I disliked: I used a metaphor when I was talking about the last story so maybe I'll do that again here. This was like coming back from study abroad and driving your old car that your brother borrowed while you were gone but little do you know that he took a turn too fast trying to go to Dairy Queen and barely missed a stopsign but absolutely nailed the curb and blew a tire and bent the wheel just enough that even though he replaced the tire there is still some pretty significant problems that you don't discover until you hit 55+ on the highway and the whole car starts to shake and then you hit 60 and the new tire blows. You know what I mean? This is a beautiful opening. I mean, really, most every I look there is this... something infused in your writing. Something engaging. But the sum is not as great as the parts. Helpfully labeled stuff, driving with the handbrake, reheating the casserole, all of this is great individually. But it bogs you down with a lack of agency. And while I enjoyed what I was reading, I could help but think: get to the point already. And then at the end a stranger shows up, I don't know who he is, and suddenly the main character knows this thing but everything has been so unclear and meandering that precisely what she knows isn't... interesting? I guess? I don't know why I should care. Then bam teen pregnancy bam adoption bam suicide bam dead kid-who-is-now-an-adult-I-think bam there's no ending bam I'm spinning out on the highway bam I’m
Something I liked: I don't know. I'm probably being overally harsh. I liked most everything really. Is this Thranguy?

Edward the Confessor; patron saint of office workers, kings, lists, colors,
Something I disliked: You've received the crit before that "thunderdome isn't the place for these kinds of stories" -- specifically from this head judge. Maybe try sticking to a more traditional narrative arc?
Something I liked: Easy to read. Great voice -- quirky and weird but fun. Same with the imagery. Interesting toying around with ideas of importance, kingship, power through a dystopian (?) lens. I loved this, honestly. Fav of the bunch.

Mary Magdalene; patron saint of hairdressers, salon workers, gardeners
Something I disliked: I don't really have anything to say about this without getting tremendously. It was short and sweet.
Something I liked: See above. Good, easy read.

Gottschalk; patron saint of Hungarians, booklovers, dementia
Something I disliked: Man, you corrected yourself two sentences in. “My father left me a gravestone and a box full of books.” Aight, interesting. “It took me a couple of weeks to put the money in my bank account, and then a couple more weeks to finally open the box.” What? This fucks up the thing you literally just set up because now he left you a gravestone, some money, and a box of books. Bad start. Also, this takes too long to really get going in my opinion. We meander for a long time.
Something I liked: Multiple layers which color the story over and over, Hungarian, English, Google translate, the journal, the spoken words, the visual inspection of the father, the memories of the experiences

Agatha; patron saint of bellmakers
Something I disliked: I don't know enough about medieval (?) bellmakers but giving the dude the surname "Bellfounder" feels wrong. Like, amateruishly on the nose and I hate it. But it could be age appropriate and I'm wrong! Regardless, I would have just dropped the whole surname thing. Small poo poo tho and this will probs win
Something I liked: Helluva reveal goddamn powerful poo poo

Barbara; patron saint of sealife, lumberjacks, interior designers
Something I disliked: the coolest part of this whole loving story shows up at the end! The description of the inside, the colorful shell snails, the “he appreciated it, from a professional standpoint,” that’s all really great stuff. You complete the “circle” so to speak really, really well. Connecting the beginning and the ending. This needs more… something in the middle. I don’t know what exactly. But I want more of a personal stake to the story. That’s why your ending hits really well. It gets personal. The whole middle section though is just, like, observation. Rawley isn’t particularly doing anything. He isn’t interacting with anything. He isn’t challenging or changing his world. He needs to be.
Something I liked: loving cool world. Cool creature. I dig it.

Rosa of Lime; patron saint of marijuana, angry mothers, gardners
Something I dislike: Your characters all sound the same. The dialogue isn’t distinct. And you add little thing (he giggled, a note of irritation in his voice) that don’t really fit. Also, Stefan works for a firm? That’s a legit job and a bit of a stretch to be called an “artist.” Real talk, he’d have some fancy title that would be easy to sell to a parent. Money being the root of their problems, of needing it for the wedding, of it indepting her to her parents and that being such a source of anxiety, is revealed way too late. Needs to be foreshadowed (at minimum) early on.
Something I like: Super legit settings. Dude is playing video games while she talks to her mom? Yup. Weird midnight convo in bed? Yup. Weed greenhouse? Cool.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


James White Award posted:

Don't write about :
robots (or computers or monsters) that turn on their creators
time-travelling assassins
virtual reality
dragons
abductions by UFOs
vampires
alien invasions
quests for magical items
god/s as alien/s or alien/s as god/s
ultimate weapons
stories about Elvis Presley, Adolf Hitler, Albert Einstein or Jesus
retelling Adam and Eve in space…

oh great so we're not allowed to have FUN what the gently caress is the POINT then uggghhh GAAAHHHH

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


In with a flash, please.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


Brutus, thou sleep’st. Awake, and see thyself.
1354 words

Archived.

Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at Dec 25, 2018 around 19:18

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


In, university funding

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Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should!

td19


a competition for university funding


Tyger tyger
1799 words

Archived.

Tyrannosaurus fucked around with this message at Dec 25, 2018 around 19:19

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