Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by Somatic_Psycho, Apr 21, 2009.
It was written well, and all the usual general statements for good writing that I won't repeat here. It was definitely more coherent than your last short story, as you said. It was a nice compact story, though it portrayed enough emotion and character identity for a piece twice as large. I guess that's the nice thing about fight scenes, you can show who someone is with a few simple thoughts and actions.
I've only got two criticisms for it. One is the first paragraph (not counting the one sentence opener). It felt very stiff to me. First, the repetition (felt it... saw it... heard it...) made it sound, for lack of a better word, fake. Maybe unrealistic would work as well; it seemed to me that in the midst of a fight, the person wouldn't coherently put these things together in that logical fashion. Second, "sideways and away" is redundant. And lastly, the description of the hand placement seemed a little off to me. I felt like "clutching his injured stomach with his free hand" would have sufficed. But that's just a stylistic thing, if you prefer your way don't worry about it.
My second criticism is for the dialogue. While nothing emphatically screamed "Roman gladiators," that was definitely what I thought these fighters were based on a few things: the names, the sword being a gladius, and the bloodthirsty audience. But the dialogue screamed "Old English" to me. "A pox on your mercy" is a line that could have come straight out of a Shakespeare piece, or from one of his contemporaries. The thoughts, on the other hand, seemed a fit to the Roman vibe. Which only served to emphasize the oddness of the dialogue in my mind, sadly.
Overall, I liked it better than your first story. And since I liked that one well enough, it's a good thing. I noticed that my critique is about 3/4 criticism, but don't let that fool you: it was more good than bad by far. I just tend to let my inner critic go overboard. And hey, maybe you even prefer constructive criticism to ego inflating compliments.
Ouch! Well, as I said before, I tend to use this thread an an excuse to write (I haven't worked on my novel for over a year). The fact is, I have no plan for the story until I hit the 'post' button. I hadn't intended for the story to be set in a Roman gladiatorial arena until I wrote the word 'gladius.' At that point, it rather appealed to me to have a Norseman and Gaul fight each other for the pleasure of the Roman mob. Anyway, your comments are appreciated; just bear in mind that I am simply using this thread to stimulate my writing muscles. Who knows, I may in future post something that's actually worth reading.
Ah, well, if that's how it is it's all good. I just figured I'd critique it like any other piece of writing, so that's what I did. And if you flew by the seat of your pants writing the story, it's no wonder there were a couple things that weren't polished. Just like your last 15 minute work!
If this is just an excuse to write something, by all means ignore my criticisms. They're kind of the same thing for me: just something to write and to give my inner critic some exercise. And if you do write something you consider worthwhile, I'll probably be around to point out flaws, cause I'm just that pessimistic.
The earth cracked and the skies boomed. The air was thick with the putrid spell of dead corpses and disgusting creatures. The earth was stained, both with the blood of thousands dead and the taint of an ancient evil. Darin stood in the centre of a battle field. He was surrounded on all sides by the bodies of his comrades and the bodies of the horrible creatures of Bor’sneth. Across from him, not more then 30 paces away stood the terrible inhuman leader of the Bor’neth creatures. Arazen. The beast stood still. The only movement it made was caused by deep breathing. Arazen wore a lot of heavy armour. The foul armour was thick and easily capable of stopping all of Darin’s attacks. The armour was heavy. That was Darin’s only advantage right now. Not that it was the great of an advantage. Though Arazen was forced to stop every so often to catch its breath do to the tremendous weight of the armour, his attacks were swiftly quick. Whenever Arazen stopped fighting to rest, Darin had to as well. The world was about to fall into the darkness of obliteration and Darin was the only person left that could stop it from happening. He tightened his grip on the hilt of his broad sword. Arazen’s heavy breathing ceased. He was fully rested. Darin was not. The beast charged him with his great axe raised high. Darin was so tired, but he stood his ground. Arazen charged. Just before the brute was with in striking distance Darin dropped, rolled and stabbed up with his blade. There was a loud clang as his sword was carelessly deflected by the strong armour. The beast brought the end of his axe down. Darin managed to doge the blow. However he wasn’t able to dodge the powerful blow to his face from the armoured knee of Arazen. Darin fell to the ground gripping his face.
He was in so much pain. He could barley see, barley think. The beast raised his axe to deliver a killing blow. Darin put out his hand and called upon his power. The beast was thrown quiet a distance away as a burst of green light admitted from Darin‘s hand into the beast chest. That was the last of Darin’s magic. All he had left was 2 healing potions, one of witch he used. His face was instantly repaired as the uneasy feeling of the potion coursing through him caused him to become temporarily numb. The beast stood but did not move. Its chest rose and fell. The blast had knocked the wind out of it. It didn’t take long to rest. Before Darin could think of a way to survive another attack the beast charged again. Its fury propelling it faster then it had ever moved. Out of the corner of his eye Darin glimpse movement. Acting on faith and instinct he tossed his last healing potion in the direction of the movement. Arazen was upon him. It brought its powerful axe down. Darin dodged and lashed out with his sword. It harmlessly bounced of an armoured shoulder. The beast lashed out with a fist. Darin dodged and struck again. This time he was able hit a weak point in the wrist part of the armour. Arazen dropped its axe and punched Darin in the chest. Darin flew back and landed hard on the ground. He was out of breath and in a lot of pain. The blow had defiantly broken ribs. The beast stood over him. The thing stared at Darin with devilish eyes. It rose a fist in the air. Darin reacted quick. He trough dirt into the creatures eyes. It lunged back, screaming. It tore off its helm and covered its face with its hands. It screamed a bone chilling scream. It lowered its hands and revealed its true self. It was a disgusting creature beyond description. It focused on Darin with blood shot eyes and drew a sword that hung at its side. Darin went to raise his sword only to realize he no longer held one in his hand. He must have dropped it when the beast had knocked him down.
He frantically looked for another weapon but there were none. Darin turned back to face the creature who now stood over him. Without thought the beast plunged its sword into Darin’s belly. The pain was horrible. Darin grasped the blade and tried to pull it out but he couldn’t compete with the beast strength. Tears ran down his eyes. He could feel the life leaving him, he could feel the sword inside of him and the horrible pain it caused. The beast twisted the blade. Darin tried to scream but blood filled his mouth. Arazen laughed. Its laugh was worse then its scream. The malice in the beast laugh could only be compared to the millions of cackles emitted by the demons of hell. It drew its blade from Darin’s belly and was about to make the finale blow when a sword burst forth from his forehead. The sword dropped from its dead hand and the beast fell limp to the ground. As its massive body fell a smaller, human body, was reviled. The man that stood over the corpse of Arazen held a small bottle in his hand. Darin recognized the bottle. The man walked around the felled beast and knelt beside the dieing Darin. The man placed a hand upon Darin’s wound and looked into his eyes.
“I will never be able to thank you enough for what you did for me and what you did for the world. You will be forever honoured. As far as anyone will know, the blade that ended it all will belong to Darin Marther the champion of the west. Go to the light and walk forever happy in the halls of Kar’lin”
You will be forever honoured
Okay, first, The Great Adventurer... Please make use of paragraphs. And smaller text. I couldn't bear reading your piece there because it was just a big wall of text that was hard to track from line to line.
And Thy Fearful Symmetry, what more can I say? You're a damned good writer. You describe things well, you write good dialogue, your plots are interesting... Only criticism I have for you is that your self deprecation is annoying. Things like saying you know a good story is "rubbish" and the junk in your profile about lack of talent kind of piss me off when you're so obviously a great writer. Quit listening to yourself and write more good stuff!
Jorick, Jorick, Jorick, such a sceptical soul. Believe me, I'm not self-deprecating. I suspect we just have two different ideas of what constitutes 'quality'. I tend to type the above drivel at odd hours of the morning when I can't sleep and I've got nothing else to say in the other threads. Believe me, if I thought they were worth a damn I certainly wouldn't be posting them online. You need to think of them more as stream-of-consciousness ramblings; half-formed ideas put on the page merely to see how they look. Again, I think you're being overly kind, but I suppose some part of me is glad your reaction wasn't one of outright ridicule (although, as I said before, that wouldn't stop me posting either). Anyway, thank you (sincerely) for your input, misguided though it seems to me. I promise that one day, when I've finished warming up the writing muscles in my brain, I will post something of genuine worth (before deleting it again very quickly).
Hah, it seems you're misguided one. You're acting as if I'm giving a review for a novel when it's a quickie short story. I'm not. I'm taking into account that you said before you type these things up in 15 minutes or so. And for such a time, they're damned good work. Also, looking back at the first page, you also said you write these flying by the seat of your pants, without any beforehand structuring. Which makes it a greater accomplishment when they turn out well.
I'm not one for giving nice critiques to spare someone's feelings, or be any more nice than something deserves. Take a look at the first critique I gave in this thread, for instance. Or the critiques I did of your first two stories posted here. If you'd like some points of criticism, I can give you some, but they're really unnecessary to say. They're very minor and don't detract from any of the stories in any meaningful way. And I was too lazy to do an in depth critique of each story.
So, yeah, when I say something is good I'm not talking out of my ass. For what they are, your stories are really good. 15 minutes without any forethought to structure and they turn out like that? They're damned good for that kind of work. One of these days I'll have to create a true abomination of a story as a point of comparison to show you what drivel really is.
All I'll say is that very few stories written quickly and without any kind of forward planning can ever be considered worthwhile (unless the author is uber-talented). The last one took about six minutes from first word to last, which is why there is so much repetition of certain words and why it ends rather abruptly. They are what they are; derivative fluff whose sole purpose is to allow me to pass the time when I'm too lazy to do something more constructive. And I would never accuse you of talking out of your ass; that's the preserve of circus freaks and Terry Goodkind fans.
[deleted] I've decided to shove my stories elsewhere; this thread should be preserved for those who take their writing more seriously than I do..
Thanks for the criticism but I was kind of hoping for some criticism relating to the writing, plot, story...things like that rather then my paragraph structure.
The reason it was just a huge wall of text was because I was in a hurry when I wrote it. It was so excited when I found this thread I whipped something up as quick as I could so I could get in on the action. sorry it was hard to read. If I ever post in the future ill try to remember to make it easier to read.
I still need to write something up for this
Separate names with a comma.