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The Cleon Memorial Library For discussion of Traveller fiction, both official and fan-written. Fan-written drafts are explicitly welcome.

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  #1  
Old February 3rd, 2016, 05:34 PM
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Default Short story "Bones and Mortar"

http://gammamutant.deviantart.com/ar...rtar-532436793
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Old February 3rd, 2016, 07:55 PM
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"FLARKING" He he.
Nice, I liked it !
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Old February 4th, 2016, 04:05 PM
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thanks
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Old February 4th, 2016, 05:05 PM
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The mortar trees are a nice touch... as are the pop beetles. Always happy to see a couple of potentially dangerous ecological niches.

Ah. Yes, I do like the Tower, as well. Very nice.

And, I smiled at the ending. I'd like to see Keating's personality developed just a shade more, to give more punch to that final line. Perhaps you can work something into the existing text.

In retrospect, it seems as though Devin was not likable. Don't skimp on him. Give him value to the reader; that makes the Tower scene better. And also... make sure the characters don't simply ignore the incident as though nothing happened. I'm not asking to derail the action, but this isn't quite like soldiers storming a pillbox, right?
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Old February 4th, 2016, 05:23 PM
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Quote:
And also... make sure the characters don't simply ignore the incident as though nothing happened.
reminds me of that scene from robocop.

"too bad about devin."

"yeah, well, that's life in the big galaxy."
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Old February 4th, 2016, 06:13 PM
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I disliked Devin as soon as he was introduced. I didn't like disliking him -- it felt like I was being told to dislike him because he was afraid -- but it wasn't quite a caricature, so I ignored it as best as I could. But I liked it even less later on, when it turned out that he was a redshirt.

Rob's Rule on Redshirts: make their loss significant.

The only reason I'm posting AGAIN about him is because I think the story has a lot of promise, and can be improved significantly with better attention to (for example) the victim.

EXAMPLE. This is NOT the story, however the thought just occurred to me. Supposing the CAPTAIN was the one disintegrated, and Devin happened to be the backup leader and had to step up? We're invested in the captain, and it would hit the reader hard. That makes a story riveting. WHAT THE HECK will they DO NOW? It wouldn't work unless Devin was a capable, useful, flawed and interesting person. On the other hand, suppose he was also a greedy and sneaky bastard. The author has then just set up the rest of the team for a second source of peril: Devin will be thinking of ways to off the rest of the crew, and the Ancient Thingamabob is already a source of unknown danger. The plot gets complicated.

Hmmm. Now I've got the urge to write a story that goes south in that way. Lemme think about that...
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Old February 4th, 2016, 06:39 PM
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Thanks for the tips. If I decide to expand this any I will take them to heart. You speak of character development, so I will admit one funny thing. I started the captain with the intent on making him into what i usually played in game, a captain struggling to keep his ship in the black while taking care of his crew. By the end, he somehow turned into Mr. Krab in my head. One of the weird quirks of writing I guess.
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Old February 4th, 2016, 06:50 PM
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somebody described writing as like trying to build a chicken coop in a hurricane. to me it's more like surfing a hurricane. just let the characters be themselves.
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Old February 5th, 2016, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gammamutant View Post
Thanks for the tips. If I decide to expand this any I will take them to heart. You speak of character development, so I will admit one funny thing.
My suggestion is, if you were to change only one thing, it would be to rewrite only the text that concerns Devin. Without adding wordcount, make him into a loss that is felt rather than ignored. Otherwise the text concerning him is largely just filler. Make Every Word Count.

That's all.
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Old February 5th, 2016, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flykiller View Post
somebody described writing as like trying to build a chicken coop in a hurricane. to me it's more like surfing a hurricane. just let the characters be themselves.
Editing is 90% of the effort of writing: you have to make every word count.
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