View Full Version : I have to submit a story today! Please look over this?
10-22-2008, 12:34 PM
Thanks guys! Gotta turn it in. I'll let you know how it goes next week.
10-22-2008, 01:22 PM
I could only glance over it very briefly while at work, and keep in mind I am unpublished and unpolished and all of that...
It just seems to me you over describe things in places. I would take out some of those discriptions, let the action flow more and leave some things to the readers imagination.
10-22-2008, 01:40 PM
I know it's for a class (didn't read it) but, in future, be leery of posting your work on public pages because in most markets that counts as having had it published and means you'll be less likely to sell it.
10-22-2008, 01:42 PM
Wow. Even unrevised? I may go back and lock it again.
10-22-2008, 01:44 PM
Wow. I've gotten a couple folks who loved the description, a few who wanted a bit more, two who said simplify, and now advise to drop some!
Apparently level of description is a contentious topic.
10-22-2008, 01:48 PM
The first couple of paragraphs were overtly descriptive and stilted. I felt like I had to put a lot into reading it when I all needed was a simple introduction to the story.
Description is a great thing, but too much of it can bog a story down. Especially when the story hasn't even had the chance to start.
10-22-2008, 02:02 PM
Well, you can lump me into the simplifying part, I guess.
But specifically what I mean is:
"Golden beads clicked in her hair as she shook her head. “You obviously feel it to be so. What is this request?”"
"Kohl lined eyes narrowed, studying the golden haired messenger."
It is trying to combine the description of the people and scene with the action. Describe things, but once you get to the dialogue and action let that be the focus of the story. Don't let unneeded descriptors sneak in.
That and what Jesse Custer said...although I really do like the line "whispers of cloth."
10-22-2008, 02:04 PM
I'll throw this out here for consensus. I only read the first couple of paragraphs since I'm still at work, but I think the story needs three things.
1) Ground the reader in the setting ASAP. You don't need to play reporter, but giving people a sense of time and place early on will improve the reader's experience. The quicker you ground the reader, the easier the story will be to follow.
2) Clear, concrete descriptions. I think the reason the descriptions seem like they are over described is that they are vague rather than concrete in several instances. Lots of vague language that needs to be fixed. Remember John Gardner on this. Concrete > vague.
3) Read it aloud. Like Elmore Leonard said, "If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it." If something sounds forced, you have to tinker with it so it comes out smooth.
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