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SGInc "Short" Story Workshop 2.2 Poll and Comments

21 Oct 2005 14:33 #3162 by conceptfan

My 2 cents.

I don't like the topic "per sé", so my judment isn't affordable.

Well, better luck next workshop.


<wipes tear of pride and emotion> It was worth all the effort just for that!

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21 Oct 2005 17:18 #3163 by argonaut
I've sent feedback privately to several of the authors, but I want to acknowledge the two newcomers publicly.

BW and SSS: Thanks for participating! I'm sure lfan would agree that one of the purposes of these workshops is to bring new talent into the genre. Last time I looked, your stories were leading in the poll -- you've obviously won some fans already. Please keep writing for us!

SSS: A real tour-de-force -- "Invasion of the Amazons" as conceptfan might have imagined it ... and written in verse! The ballad format allowed you to tell a story of epic magnitude within the 1000-word limit. The lines don't always scan, and some of the rhymes are a little clunky, but the story works as an ordinary man's efforts to tell his tale in poetry. Of all the stories, this one left the strongest lasting impression.

BW: A well-written, entertaining story. My only criticism is that it's kind of "generic." If you do plan to continue this story, I'd like to see you give more attention to characterization, and to aim for a distinctive "flavor" -- whether it be lighthearted (I can see this becoming an ubergirl version of "Moonlighting") or more somber (like a film noir). You can go lots of ways with this!

Again, thanks and welcome aboard!

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21 Oct 2005 17:41 #3165 by brantley

Double Blind by BTE

LOVED: The flow of this. A really enjoyable read in narration terms, well-crafted. A very simple story, ideally suited to the short format which still managed to squeeze in some atmosphere and a decent enough twist.

WISHED: It's impossible (I reckon) to cram everything into such a low word count, but I would have loved a depiction of Katrina tearing into the sea-monster, using her strength. Personally speaking, I don't like ubermales, but obviously Laurent was essential to the plot and the happy romantic ending which worked (even if I don't appreciate that kind of thing myself - it didn't push any of my buttons, but my buttons are weird.) Also, there was a missed an opportunity: with a seafaring heroine of that name you could have worked in a "Katrina and the waves" gag somewhere there.


Just a brief response here. It WOULD have taken too many words to give details of Katrina (Well, both her and Laurent) tearing the sea monster to bits. But there was another reason for not doing that: the ick and gore just weren't to the point. The point was that the monster made these two afraid for each other, and each made the decision to expose his/her true nature in order to save the other. I suppose I might have worked in something about Katrina and the waves, but I think it would have been superfluous.

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22 Oct 2005 18:02 #3169 by WhitePaw
My favorite tweak from the whole workshop:

"'How was breakfast?'
'Oatmeal.' He sighed. 'Is there really any other way to describe it?'


Conceptfan and I? We're just complimentary colors in resonant dissonance on the spectrum of writing styles. He can’t stomach the ruthlessly jolting spices of mine, and I can’t stomach the milk-of-magnisia blandness of his.

No reason to hate each other. His work makes mine seem all the tangier to my fans, and my work makes his seem all the smoother to his. Nobody’s expecting any conversions here. Resonant dissonance is simple color theory and good palette design.

Only tension here is there are dozens and dozens of milky writers out there (and in here), and seemingly only the one of me capible and/or willing to chop raw habanera at your company picnic. Accents in small doses, I suppose. Well enough, mob rule notwithstanding.

Truth to tell there are other genres out there chocked solid w/ bleeding edge grammar like mine who'd use such milky writing as fills the coffers here to wipe noses and things with. Cyberpunk fan lit is an an easy example, having been kick-started by William Gibson in his genius youth (he's blanded down lately though, I mean what the heck was 'Pattern Recognition' anyway? Sleepwriting?). So don't go around assuming your write and I'm wrong. We're just different styles is all. And you might consider getting out more often and expanding your horizons---

As far as your undergraduate milktoast stomach can stand and no further, I suppose.

"Showing off." Tsk.

Write on.

Love,
-White Paw

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22 Oct 2005 18:25 #3170 by brantley
Conceptfan BLAND?

And everyone thought he was brutal.

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22 Oct 2005 23:14 #3173 by conceptfan
Bland enough to have provoked that response, anyway. (Or was he just showing off again?)

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23 Oct 2005 00:45 #3174 by brantley
He's just planning to write a story called "Super Kitty and the Million Mouse March," but byline it Conceptmouse.

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23 Oct 2005 03:04 #3175 by Velvet
Oh, gag me with a spoon!


Velvet

:x

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24 Oct 2005 06:31 #3178 by ace191
I would like to thank everyone for their kind words and constructive criticism on my stories, especially CF. I really liked WhitePaw’short story idea for a guy who goes out trick or treating (or to a Halloween Party) with his girlfriend/wife/lover dressed up as a Superheroine who then turns out to have real super powers. That was the inspiration for
Trick or Treat. I also tried to get Admin or Lfan to post it early so it would lead into Late Supper so that I could get 2000 words in on the 1000 word limit, but they were too smart to fall for that. Guess I will have to go back to Evil U to take some remedial classes in Supervillainy!

In regards to “Mindfrakk” I have read it 5 times. I like to solve puzzles and this story certainly is one. This is definitely a new twist. Is Supergirl tormenting someone? Is she crazy herself or does some nut think she is Supergirl? Or is the good Doc the one who is missing a screw? And who is Pt M? Never mind, you are number Six.

I think there is plenty of room at SWM for someone who thinks (and writes) “Outside the Cage” so to speak.

In terms of putting myself in the story, I have always had a “thing” for Star Sapphire and this was of course my fantasy. But I realize now that it would have been better not to name anyone and thus others could have imagined themselves in that position. I will not repeat that misteak!

I just want to thank Admin and Lfan for their efforts on this site which I find a nice
escape from work!

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24 Oct 2005 11:58 #3179 by brantley
I'm surprised nobody's voted for "Late Supper." I thought that was better.

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24 Oct 2005 18:07 #3183 by brantley
Well, every story's got at least one vote.

But 26 votes total? How many members does SWM, and what percentage does that represent? I think the final turnout for the last contest was just 34. But this time the stories are shorter. Come on, guys (and gals!), you can make time for this, let the writers know you're INTERESTED. Light up their lives a bit! :idea: 8)

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26 Oct 2005 04:53 #3195 by brad328
Replied by brad328 on topic Thank You
Since voting is pretty much finished, I wanted to take the time to thank everyone who voted for my story (Supergirl Phenomenon 2.0: Prison Break).

My goal was to get one vote and, in all honesty, I didn't feel it would get any. I didn't think that people be that into it since it skewed differently, as far as tone, from the other entries.

I was also worried people would be turned off from the slight FMG element in the story (which, compared to 99% of that kind of fiction, wasn't much at all). It's not something approached in the stories posted here so I didn't know what the audience would think.

Plus, the other writers involved are much better at this than I am, more well-known, and definately more creative. Both Ace and White Paw wrote more stories for this workshop than I have in my entire life and I felt I would get lost in the shuffle.

My biggest fear was the fact that this was my first piece of fiction I've ever written and I don't have any sort of style or sense of pacing as far as dialogue and action so that's probably why it came off as generic. I thought that the best comment I'd get was "It wasn't a total train wreck for your first time".

But I have to thank the four people who thought enough of my story to vote for it and for people like Argonaut, CF, and White Paw to contribute kind comments about what I've written. And anyone else who enjoyed my work, I am thankful for all the support.

I'd also like to address why I piggybacked the original "Supergirl Phenomenon". I needed to find a reason for the main character to become a superheroine and I couldn't think of one, so I used the idea of it just "happening". Call it magic. Call it wish fufillment. I call it me being lazy :wink:

As far as continuing the story. I hadn't thought about it before. I have no idea how to continue it but I did like the "Moonlighting" suggestion and if I can think of some snappy and witty dialogue you may see a continuation of the story.

So, thanks again as this response has exceeded my wildest expectations.

-BW

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26 Oct 2005 06:27 #3196 by ace191
Replied by ace191 on topic Re: Thank You

My biggest fear was the fact that this was my first piece of fiction I've ever written and I don't have any sort of style or sense of pacing as far as dialogue and action so that's probably why it came off as generic. I thought that the best comment I'd get was "It wasn't a total train wreck for your first time".


Hey, welcome to the club and I know just how you feel! 3 months ago
I wrote my first story ever (and had it put up against Randolph and Kim by CF and The Super One by Marknew as well as three other terrific stories). I really felt like a high school kid suddenly having to bat against
Sandy Koufax. Everyone on the web site was very nice and a couple of folks sent me private e-mails with some great pointers on how to write better stories. I am still very much a "rookie" at this, but I am having
fun doing something that I always wanted to try, but never thought
I was good enought to do. I think this site is a great place to get your
feet wet and I would encourage everyone out there with any interest to give it a try!

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26 Oct 2005 13:29 #3197 by admin
The poll has now closed.

Thank you to everyone who voted, and especially to all our authors. I'm sure Lfan will agree that this was one of the most successful SGInc Story Workshops to date, with a wide range of styles, new authors and a high quality throughout. The closeness of the vote reflects this. Here are the final results:

"The Free Man's Last Song" by Supergirlssexslave 5 votes (16%)
"The Supergirl Phenomenon 2.0" by BW 4 votes (13%)
"On the Run" by Marknew 4 votes (13%)
"One Pint" by Conceptfan 4 votes (13%)
"Double Blind" by Brantley Thompson Elkins 3 votes (10%)
"Iced" by Whitepaw 3 votes (10%)
"Mindfrakk" by Whitepaw 2 votes (6%)
"Trick or Treat" by Ace191 2 votes (6%)
"Aliens Among Us" by Lfan 1 vote (3%)
"Late Supper" by Ace191 1 vote (3%)
"Brimstone Nights" by Whitepaw 1 vote (3%)

Congratulations Supergirlssexslave who gets to pick the topic for the SGInc Short Story Workshop 2.3. Don't forget to post your suggestions for 2.3 themes in the new thread "SGI "short" Story Workshop 2.3 Topic Suggestions"


admin.

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26 Oct 2005 22:07 #3210 by argonaut
Replied by argonaut on topic Re: Thank You

I'd also like to address why I piggybacked the original "Supergirl Phenomenon". I needed to find a reason for the main character to become a superheroine and I couldn't think of one, so I used the idea of it just "happening". Call it magic. Call it wish fufillment. I call it me being lazy :wink: ...

So, thanks again as this response has exceeded my wildest expectations.

-BW


Thank you!

I'm sure the author of the original "Supergirl Phenomenon" wasn't the first to use the "transformation-via-magical-wish-fulfillment" device. Besides, there's only so much you can do in 1,000 words. (In my story, it was never explained how Elena became super-powerful, and I still exceeded the limit!)

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