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119728 No. 119728
#Event
Hello, everyone.

I'm sure you're all very interested to hear how the write-off website has been coming along. Well, the short answer is, it's time for a test run, so I'm hosting a minific contest to kick start the site.

You can find all the details at http://writeoff.rogerdodger.me/

The event starts Sat, 22 Sep 2012 16:00 UTC, where the prompt submissions will open. That round will last for an hour, followed by the prompt voting round which will also last an hour.

The main event—the writing round—will begin Sat, 22 Sep 2012 18:00 UTC, and lasts for 24 hours. The word limit on the stories is 300–600 words. You are allowed multiple submissions.

When the writing round is over, the stories will go up on the »fic Write Off« Fimfiction account as usual, and a public poll will be released to rate the stories. Afterwards, the results will be released & tallied.

FAQ: http://writeoff.rogerdodger.me/faq
Rules: http://writeoff.rogerdodger.me/event/1/rules

If you have any questions, feel free to ask them.

Good luck,
Roger out.
366 posts omitted. Last 50 shown. Unspoiler all text  • Expand all images  • Reveal spoilers
>> No. 122250
>>122242
Stop treating it like some abject failure on your part. The case of someone not earning my respect is a tale sung through many an age. It's no secret that the only person I really defer to is the Samurai. I don't even really respect myself, take that as you will.
>> No. 122253
Hoo-yeah, Most Controversial once again! I am such a renegade ^o^
>> No. 122255
>>122250

>The case of someone not earning my respect is a tale sung through many an age. It's no secret that the only person I really defer to is the Samurai. I don't even really respect myself, take that as you will.

Let me add onto this that the purpose of the board and the purpose for our collective involvement is not to impress one another, rather to improve our skills and all that good stuff. Seeing impressing the old guards of /fic/ as a personal goal is rather counter-intuitive because by nature of trying to impress you've already committed to acknowledging you're beneath the old guards and thereby dwell within the umbrella of their shadow. No, the old guard is not to be put on a pedestal, not to be treated like some sort of goal to surpass, but rather as an entity that exists as a resource from which to learn and formulate your own opinions and style. That is how I treated them, and I enjoyed a degree of success because of it. Hero worship is bad for /fic/, and it should stop.

But I would also urge that you not, in a similar manner, flex your knowledge to impress. Sturm came down hard on you for that, and I don't blame him in the slightest, even though I find some bits of his behavior a mite objectionable, but never incomprehensible. One of the easiest ways to earn dislike around here is to flaunt talent (via reviewers, submissions approved to EqD, etc) because it presupposes superiority in numerous regards, whether it exists or not.
>> No. 122257
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122257
>>122255
Put much more eloquently than I did. Thank you.
>> No. 122258
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122258
>>122250
>>122255
I told myself I wasn't going to post again, but I'll not allow you to blindly assume I was trying to impress anyone. I've disliked Ion from the start, but that's no surprise to anyone. In fact, I think he somewhat enjoys that small fact. No, I was rather making the point that I really don't care what Ion has to say anymore, despite how much his remark hurt my ego, and I never treated it like a failure. It's astounding how you can seem so condescending and yet be so blind. And you call *my* analytic abilities inferior.
>> No. 122262
>>122258
>And I had thought myself higher in regard given my contributions to this board
This would seem to suggest otherwise.
>> No. 122264
>>122258

Tu Quoqueand my possible presumptuousness aside, I don't feel like what you said and what you meant are one in the same. Moreover, there's far too much emotional investment in this discussion when it should be very cut and dry criticism and response—perhaps everyone should take a break.

I have some questions to ask.

>I've disliked Ion from the start, but that's no surprise to anyone. In fact, I think he somewhat enjoys that small fact. No, I was rather making the point that I really don't care what Ion has to say anymore, despite how much his remark hurt my ego, and I never treated it like a failure.

Certainly is a surprise to me.

Why would you care what Ion has to say if you disliked him from the beginning? Is your ego so frail that you can't take an insult from someone you have expressed a notable dislike for, or, if you mean this as before identities were revealed, an anonymous comment? I'm receiving mixed messages—your claims seem contradictory from what you have said previously, notably in:

>In any case, I'll not prove myself a fool by continuing a pointless charade

definition of charade: An absurd pretense intended to create a pleasant or respectable appearance. Ambiguous meaning, could refer to Sturm or something else entirely. Attitude of resignation present. Easily attributed to current situation of attempting to earn Sturm's respect, i.e. impress.

>I'll leave you that. I know now what little respect you have for me.

Implying you didn't know Sturm disliked you.

>And I had thought myself higher in regard given my contributions to this board, and a few choice threads in particular.

Further implications. Perspective seems to say that user believes he has earned a certain level of respect. Believes failure in that regard.

>It's astounding how you can seem so condescending and yet be so blind. And you call *my* analytic abilities inferior.

I'd like to lay off the insults. No reason to bring that into this. Not sure who this refers to, could be Sturm, could be me, Tu Quoque seems to refer to Sturm, but the rest seems directed at me.
>> No. 122265
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122265
>>122262
>>122264
It's not that hard to figure out. Didn't matter who it was from, an honest evaluation of my analytic abilities being of 'not up to par' was going to sting. Ion's just the jerk who said it.
>> No. 122267
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122267
I don't write for good, and I don't write for evil. I just WRITE!

So long as someone gets a kick or finds some enjoyment in what I write, that's good enough for me. Admittedly when ratings and recommendations are involved I get wrapped up in trying to be the best. At those times I need to step back and remind myself why I got into writing in the first place: to bring about silly nonsense for my and others' enjoyment.

(Used pic because I haven't used it in forever)
>> No. 122268
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122268
>>122265
What the hay is that picture?? D:
>> No. 122269
Wow, The Last Mug did well! So did Misery.
I'll just forget about the other one...
>> No. 122270
>>122255
>stop Hero worship
You realize that, being a pre-reader, this can only come as ironic, right?

As for the current drama: Ion has always been an ass that thinks highly of the Samurai and no one else, so what sort of surprise is that he acts this way? I believe we have seen this multiple times, and he saying someone is not good enough is just noise at this point.
>> No. 122271
>>122265

>Didn't matter who it was from, an honest evaluation of my analytic abilities being of 'not up to par' was going to sting.

I gave you much more credit than simply that. Personally, I feel you should be able to take honest feedback and improve on it without getting into a situation such as this.

>>122270

I fail to see the irony. Care to explain it to me?

>As for the current drama: Ion has always been an ass that thinks highly of the Samurai and no one else, so what sort of surprise is that he acts this way? I believe we have seen this multiple times, and he saying someone is not good enough is just noise at this point.

Which is why I'm concerned over this reaction.
>> No. 122273
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122273
>>122264
>Tu Quoque seems to refer to Sturm, but the rest seems directed at me.
Eh, sorta. Most of it was both of you, but Tu Quoque was Ion only.

>Perspective seems to say that user believes he has earned a certain level of respect.
Actually, that was in regards to Ion once saying he respected me for trying to help other users. I was merely showing that I'd noticed he went back on that.
>Implying you didn't know Sturm disliked you.
Due to what I've just mentioned, I honestly didn't.
>definition of charade
My point exactly; I'm *not* pursuing a charade.
>> No. 122274
>>122273

>My point exactly; I'm *not* pursuing a charade.
>continuing

But you were.
>> No. 122275
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122275
>>122271
What situation? I didn't say I couldn't handle it, I just said it stung. The same way a paper cut does. You just learn from it. You thought I was upset? Allow me to rectify that. See ya.

>>122274
If you say so.
>> No. 122276
>>122275

>What situation?

The elongated bout with Sturm.

>I didn't say I couldn't handle it,

I didn't say you couldn't either.

>You thought I was upset?

Yes.

>Allow me to rectify that.

I don't believe you.
>> No. 122278
>>122271
I could link you to all the "prereaders are superheroes that make the world a better place" journals, but you have your own fimfiction. That said, the "prereaders are the spawns of Hitler and Cthulhu" are hilarious but ring far less sincere than the other ones, while also being rarer. So, I can't take you saying keeping people in a pedestal to be an overall bad thing and should be eliminated, when prereaders are kept there and nothing is done to diminish that. "It's their fault if they want to believe that," is the classic response, if I remember correctly.

>I gave you much more credit than simply that. Personally, I feel you should be able to take honest feedback and improve on it without getting into a situation such as this.
/fic/ has a tendency to be a self-concious drama-queen magnet. Which, I have to say, I don't mean as an insult but a technical description.
>> No. 122279
>>122278

Certainly makes the threads engaging to read through, though. I've been reloading this one at odd times just to see how long this'd go on for.
>> No. 122280
>>122278

>but you have your own fimfiction.

Nobody has ever made such a comment on my FIMFiction.

>when prereaders are kept there and nothing is done to diminish that. "It's their fault if they want to believe that," is the classic response, if I remember correctly.

Forgive me if I straw man you, but are you suggesting that I force people to abandon their opinions on the basis that I don't approve of them? What gives me the authority to make that decision? Moreover, why do you think I should be allowed to police what other people think of me behind closed doors.

I'm also not seeing the irony.
>> No. 122283
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122283
Oh. Um, thanks! Wow, I definitely didn't expect to win, let alone for my other fics to do solidly as well. I'm glad you liked them!

Hearth's Warming Cards: I've blabbed on far too long on this one. (And I apologize again for >>121980. Lesson learned that that level of detail should be shoved up my own ass saved for after the voting period.) Still, thanks for liking it!

Simple Model: I do enjoy subverting expectations. This was silly, and I had fun. Once again I am forced to apologize to EZN by ruining a fic with Twilestia.

Party Rock Anthem: "I'm not that great at writing Pinkie Pie. I should use one of my minifics to practice her. She'll be the main character. No, first-person. No, stream-of-consciousness!!1" And then this happened. Frankly surprised this one didn't garner more hate, but I guess the mad ramblings get a free pass because Pinkie Pie. And it was silly fun too. And I shamelessly love memes. No shame.

For Mommy: How did this get as high as 5.9 what is wrong with you people (sets this on fire and banishes it to the moon). Sorry for being an asshole to Dinky and also sorry to Broops for him getting pinned for writing this :P At least the d'awws of Hearth's makes up for the evil-for-the-hell-of-it of this? Right? Guys?

Other musings:
- A few of these got robbed. "Pancakes and Apples" and "To Equestria" stand out as undervalued IMHO.
- Haters gonna hate. He may not have scored that highly, but Dublio is a trooper for churning out 8 stories and 5.7k in 24 hours, especially coming off writer's block.
- This whole drama is stupid. The arguments being made today almost make sense, except for the fact that Ion made those remarks while anonymous-at-the-time. Without being able to credit those statements to his name and put them in the appropriate context, no shit people would get the wrong idea. Fun though my abuses of pseudonym posting were in this event, I still fundamentally hate it. There would have been less drama if he had posted as Ion (defending his story as "a fan") rather than posting as Author Of (whom no one knew at the time).
>> No. 122286
I've mentioned in chat that I habitually give Cassius the voice of Jeremy Irons. I just realized that if Sturm sounds like David Kaye's Megatron and Rain sounds like John Cleese this derail changes from bad feels to awesomeness and rainbows.

Can we have more awesomeness and rainbows?
>> No. 122287
>>122279
It will go on as long as we want. It's fun that way, at least to some.

>>122280
>>122280
Neither have they made hate ones, if I recall correctly. Or commented all that much. In fact, there has never been a "I hate the pre-readers" comment on the public ones, but there have been comments praising them for what they do. Not many, but there have been. Remember this too: most people don't even go to say "thank you prereader X", they say "thank you prereaders".

>Forgive me if I straw man you, but are you suggesting that I force people to abandon their opinions on the basis that I don't approve of them? What gives me the authority to make that decision? Moreover, why do you think I should be allowed to police what other people think of me behind closed doors.
Not at all; I am stating that, personally, I can't take any notion of someone telling people that having some person in much higher regard (also known as hero worshiping to some) is a bad thing for any one group seriously when they are actively kept in a pedestal and then their reaction to this is to simply shrug. You don't need to be policing anyone, and maybe there is very little you can do to change it in any case, but you saying that just rings all sort of contradictions when you are trying to tell others not to do it here but don't do anything to stop it there. So, there is your irony: your comment about "hero worshiping" coming from a guy who swims in a generalize "hero worshiping" is just too contradictory. You aren't actively doing anything to anyone, other than impart an opinion which doesn't seem consistent to me.

That's all, my personal opinion as to why I can't take your comment about hero worshipping as anything but ironic.
>> No. 122291
>>122287
>>122287

>contradictions

My stated opinion is I do not like hero worship, and I suggested that it should end. That is my opinion. Whether I choose to act on it or not is irrelevant, and my inaction in any regard is not contradictory to my opinion.

>Remember this too: most people don't even go to say "thank you prereader X", they say "thank you prereaders".

Pre-readers provide a service. Thanking them is not equivocal of hero worship. My best suited parallel is thanking a soldier for his service to the country; this is not hero worship. Idolizing them, is.

>not to do it here but don't do anything to stop it there

That's not what I said. The implications by the statement made do not mean that it is bad exclusively for /fic/. Hero worship is generally bad. It's not mentally healthy. Why you think I can somehow contradict that position by not opening up a ward to help people with problems regarding hero worship is pretty ridiculous. I don't have to do anything to hold an opinion on this issue and have it be consistent—Similarly, I don't have to donate to charity even though I think too many people are poor. But I do anyways.

>So, there is your irony:

So it's not irony.

>this is to simply shrug

You don't know my reaction. You're blatantly generalizing opinions from a group you think you know the workings of, which I believe you do not. Even if my reaction is to do nothing, an inaction is not an implicit approval—why are you suggesting this?

>your comment about "hero worshiping" coming from a guy who swims in a generalize "hero worshiping"

I don't "swim" in hero worshiping. As I have said, it's rarely ever present. I rarely have author interactions—outside of /fic/, barely anyone knows that I'm a pre-reader. You don't really know me, so really what you're doing is drawing an unfair generalization of all pre-readers and applying it to me to suit your opinion of the body as a whole.

>is just too contradictory.

It's not a contradiction, you're just committing a Tu Quoque and some hasty generalizations.
>> No. 122293
>>122234
Ah, I'm glad you could enjoy it.

>I find it interesting that they fell as they got their cutie marks, but why does it seem like such a tragedy.

Ah, that was really one of the points. They are marks of dishonor. Or, at least, that's what this story would imply. Sacrificing free will for fate, Celestia murdered her parents, bound herself and her sister to the movement of the heavens, and left forever her paradise home. While I haven't figured exactly why she chose this path, it is reasonable to assume for power--or for another dream as of yet unknown. (I'm not against speculation at this point, because, if I do revise it, I'd like to include concrete details.)

I would like to point out that you didn't answer whether the story would be better if more was added.

I am also not ignorant of that jab you made at your critics through your response to my request. Please, while I do value your opinion--everyone's opinion to some degree--I find that particular derailment ridiculous and counterproductive.
>> No. 122298
>>122293

I'm not Bleeding Raindrops, but in the interest of moving this thread away from the utter derailment that it is currently undergoing, I'll pretend that part of that post was directed to me.

Your fic could've done with more words added to it. Most of the fics in this contest could've, truth be told, if only to save everyone from needing to post 'clarification' on what they've already said. As much as I appreciate that readers should be expected to spend some time reading between the lines, we are writing fanfiction here, a hobby that is almost entirely populated by amateurs. The default reaction is to not give the writer the benefit of the doubt and to instead assume that he has made some form of a mistake. Because of that, having a greater word count in which to express yourself would be useful solely for the purposes of clarity.

To specify it to your fic, however, I'd spend some more time fleshing out your introduced characters, as well as the world they inhabit. Seven hundred and thirty three words is not nearly enough room in which to wrestle out three new characters and a new location without them feeling underdone.

I wouldn't suggest completely filling in all the bits between your scenes, however. Keep up the time jumps and just add more jumps into them. Give us more of a clue as to why Celestia and Luna had to fall. Give us more hints as to what it means by them rebelling: that it has significance is clear, but why it is significant is not. Spend more time fleshing out the relationships between characters. Just... well, give the fic space to breathe, especially now that it's no longer confined to a sub 1 K word count.

There. I've opinion dumped. I feel so unclean.
>> No. 122299
>>122283
>>122270
All that discordance. Yumyumyumyumyum, delicious.
>> No. 122306
>>122222
Well, solid middle of the pack this time around. At least I got better than 5 this time. (yay?)

Good show, all around.

And yes, congratulations to all the winners.
>> No. 122314
>>121654
Just a clarification here: the content guidelines on the T rating are pretty slack. Swearing isn't even close to the line. As long as it isn't straight up smut/gore you should be all right.
>> No. 122315
Eventually
>for now,
Missed capitalization
>The faint silhouette of the trees outside began to stand out against the increasingly blueing sky. She could hear the birds begin to chirp outside.
Repetition of "begin" in a short space. This is one of the most overused verbs.
Mechanically, quite clean. There were only a couple of other things I noticed, but they were minor or flow versus right/wrong issues. You've captured Rarity's personality very well. She's almost a slave to her work, but actually gets satisfaction from it. You even played the generosity angle a bit, which I'd like to see accentuated a bit more. Here, she seems more concerned with the business aspect: making money, satisfying the client, and keeping up her reputation. A few minor mentions of extras she'd thrown in and how it made her feel good to do so would go a long way. Now, we've gone from 400 to 600 to 750 words in the /fic/ mini write-offs, and if some managed to complete a story in 400, surely 750 is enough. We have tension built here, but nothing is resolved. It's a great scene, but it's not a story, well-written though it is.

A Deal to Last a Lifetime
>a wheeled chair squeaking away as its chin
The "its" here really wants to refer to the chair, not the chin.
>the thick string of ichor dangling from his cheek quivering like a goober
You've got two successive participles modifying "string," which always bogs a sentence down.
>just give me it.
That just sounds odd.
>Oh, and a word to the wise;
Feels more like a dash or colon
>big wig
One word, unless you literally mean a large mop of hair
>Scootaloo ignored the pinch wrote down the request
Missing word
>‘Thrill of the hunt’
No reason to capitalize that. Given that it's a quote, I'm surprised you didn't use a similar font to the one for Death. Bravo on that, btw.
I like this story. Nice macabre humor, then the twist ending. And that ending. Y'all know how I love open interpretations. Here goes. I think Scoot can feel the touch to her side because her wings aren't there covering her sides. So her wish to be with Dash was traded by her wish to fly. So they don't know what dream they're giving up? Or Scootaloo gave it up voluntarily? Maybe that's her realization... that she remembers doing it. I also had an explanation of how the subversion was that she had Rainbow's wings, and Dash couldn't fly anymore. But I can't brain how that worked now. Anyway, technically, Scoot could still live in Cloudsdale, because the magic that lets her walk on clouds would still be there, and she would only need help getting to and from the city. Or not? Is it contained in the wings? Hm. Overdone premise, blah blah. Still well-written. And as a reviewer, I'd rather read a skillfully done cliche than an amazing premise with butchered language. I rank stories by quality more so than enjoyment.

Essence of a Dream
>Decorations littered the floors such as hanging balloons and streamers.
Watch your modifier placement. The "such as" phrase would seem to describe the floors.
>Peekaboo
Why capitalized?
>In the center was a room was a table.
I believe you meant "center of the room."
>Her friends looked like they were laughing but Twilight couldn’t hear anything.
Missing comma
>said a voice besides her
beside
>colors shifted from vibrant pastel colors
repetitive
>He just shook his head.
Belongs in the next paragraph with his actions and speech.
>well I can’t really answer that.
Capitalize
A couple other minor things. Interesting idea. I'd be curious as to how Twilight is self-aware, but none of the others are. Is this stallion showing the real her the dream, or is she something that faces its own mortality once the dream ends? And what is his motivation to become involved? I'm on the fence about whether this constitutes a story. There is a slight conflict introduced: that Pinkie is much more insecure than would seem. And there is a bit of resolution given that Twilight is now aware of it, but if that's not the real Twilight, nothing will come of it. It's not a bad setup for a story, but it leaves open too many questions about where it's going and what got it started in the first place. It's rather on the telly side, but the writing quality isn't bad, and Twilight's characterization rings true.

Voices
>fools errand
fool's errand
>They would drink it, and begin to act strange.
strangely
>“Good.
Need a close quote
>Take-- Take me instead.
Use a proper em dash, unspaced (or en dash with space on both sides), and don't capitalize the second word. It no longer starts the sentence.
Nice world building, but it's actually too much. We get introduced to so many characters in rapid succession that it's impossible to keep up with them all. Aside from the one teeny instance of a flying character, there's nothing here that's intrinsically pony. This could just as easily be a human story. The opening scene is just talking heads, which loses a lot of the emotional content. And much of the action here seems extraneous to the actual conflict. We do get a feel for the atmosphere and that there are several subplots playing out, but the one related directly to the dream doesn't need the rest of them as this fic stands. Some of that word count could have been used to explain why the dream was the only way to get the desired information, and how the characters know that to be the case. It hints at a lot of vague back story. It would make a nice seed for an extended adventure story.

Stalking an Idol
>a hat covered his mane
That's... odd, considering the mane goes all the way down the neck.
>it was him
Technically, "it was he."
>She pushed her spiky orange hair back to make sure it wasn't poking out of her hiding spot and held her breath. Satisfied that he wasn't being followed
Notice how you're jumping perspectives here. These sentences each require the narrator to be privy to the thoughts of a different character. While that's not strictly off-limits, it's a bad idea to skip around to abruptly or often. Best to stick with one character here and convey the other by what others can perceive about him.
>Whadda
Usually "whaddya."
>Please, please, please?” she pleaded.
youdontsay.jpg
>squee
Not really a word, and generally inadvisable to use.
>Captain
Inconsistent about capitalizing this.
>She tilted his head at him
Sounds rather rude of her.
>"I've got what it takes. “
Extra space, and it broke the smart quotes.
>everyday
"Everyday" doesn't mean the same thing as "every day."
>Kid
Why capitalized?
This story was cute. It got a little talking heads toward the end as you ran out of word count. Another one where I'm on the fence about whether it constitutes a scene or a story. The only real conflict is about whether Blaze will relent, and he does, but nobody's character develops any as a result. Since he's the only one that changes, at least it's good that he's the primary focus character, but he really should be the only focus character. Maybe a little on the obvious side, but not bad.

Rainfall in Providence
>A fountain stood in the middle of the plaza, gently running bubbly white water over its mottled stone.
Repetition of plazw from previous sentence. If water's running "gently," it wouldn't be bubbling or white.
>She had all she wanted: food, drink, and entertainment of every flavor; loving subjects, servants, and friends; everything that she could wish for…
I don't see the point of the semicolons. The items between them are loosely grouped, but you're not expounding on any of them.
>“Darling—” he stated, stepping forward.
Accentuate the interruption by having it be last. That way, the very next thing we read is what interrupts it. It doesn't work here because it sounds like he still has time to walk after he's cut off.
>She gestured to the clime beyond her open window.
You don't need a period on a parenthetical interruption like this. The only end punctuation you'd use would be ! or ?
>shying from the occasional thunder
Not sure why they'd do this. Thunder itself isn't dangerous.
>With a wet smack and a sonorous thud
Missing comma after introductory phrase
>Stopping to take a breath, lying with her under the rainfall, he asked
Stacked participial phrases
>“No fair, I’ve caught you—“
Smart quotes can break, often at dashes or with leading apostrophes. Your close quotes are backward.
You have a number of odd capitalizations. A bit telly in places. Well, you create a nice atmosphere. This felt like you hit the word count limit and weren't able to redistribute your verbiage throughout. I don't get what's happening at the end. Where did Luna come from? Why is she being cast out when it's never implied she was complicit? The mother's reaction makes it seem like this eventuality was expected, yet there's no bridge to suggest how canon Celestia could have done something like this. You've got a commendable amount of storytelling packed in there, but either this is an AU story, or you need to show how this Celestia becomes canon. Diction and style were mostly good.

Poachers
>all clearly like
Nitpick, but when using that speech pattern, usually the adjective form prevails: all clear-like
>lightshow'll
"Light show" is two words.
>a-grade
Grades are generally capital letters, and I've always seen this phrase as "grade-A."
That description where the mist coalesces into a creature had very repetitive sentence structure.
>its back was staring right at me
I assume you meant "it was staring right back at me."
>and true to their word
Word repetition. Quite literally.
This story hints at some odd things that it doesn't really have time to explore. Why would the griffin be seen around Ponyville? Gilda's the only one to show up before, and everyone in town had never seen one before. It's also unusual for a criminal in that situation honor his end of the agreement. Either he's confident that Rarity won't talk (which you've implied) or he's moved on to where he doesn't care. In any case, I'd think Rarity would want to report what happened, if only to prevent it from happening to someone else. Consider how useful Fluttershy's animal affinity or Applejack's herding skills might be. Surely, others in town might be in danger. It's also not clear what use that creature might be. It could range anywhere from exotic pet to laboratory/food use. And what was keeping it from returning to mist form to escape the net? That seems like an odd way to snare such a creature. Why its attraction to gems? A bit telly, but that's tougher to avoid with a first-person narrator. Novel premise, and pretty well done. The dynamic between sister was handled nicely.


Hearth's Warming Cards
>holding a letter in his teeth.
Would be nice to see this affect his speech, either by imitating it or through word choice/description.
>‘n
Watch your smart quotes/apostrophes. They can break. This one's backward.
>one full-grown and healthy, the other small and deformed.
I see. Why didn't you name her Nemo?
>her face grew nostalgic again
Nostalgic is an attitude, not a physical description. Show me her expression.
>talking
Be consistent with her accent.
>With that
Ugh. These self-referential phrases need to be purged from narration everywhere.
Cute story. I'm getting an inconsistent picture of each character, though. Sweetie Belle "putting on" a smile implies that it's forced, but it's such a slight suggestion that it's easy to miss. Apple Bloom glances at her dust-covered toolbox, but she doesn't react at all. We never see her be anything but upbeat. Scootaloo seems completely unfazed by her situation. It's unclear to me whether the CMC's actually believe these things about each other. That would seem untenable—being a Wonderbolt, in particular, would be easy to disprove. So I'm guessing the girls are just talking each other up. But what price was paid in giving up these dreams? I don't get a sense that they are dissatisfied with their jobs. In fact, Scootaloo, who has the most menial job of them all, is the one who fails to show any regret whatsoever. Sweetie Belle, the only one to appear at all wistful, seems to have the most rewarding interactions in her employment. Thus, I can't tell whether your message was "ho hum, had to embrace boring reality" or "childish things pass, and they found new paths." Maybe a little of both? Only the bit of snow at the beginning tied the story to a calendar. I'd have like to see more Hearth's Warming references with the other characters as well, beyond just the cards. Good job, though. I rather liked this one.
>> No. 122319
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122319
Heheh, I'm actually quite happy with my position. It really wasn't a very good story and I rushed it, just to see what I could come up with.

My own confession: I wasn't able to read all of the stories. I would have written a few reviews for everyone, but I've just been so busy this week it's unreal.

The ones I read were great, though, and my personal favourite of the ones I read was 'A Deal to Last a Lifetime'.

Good job, everyone! I look forward to the next one: hopefully the longer word count will let me stretch my legs a little better. As always, this has been great fun!

Oh, and thanks Roger. The website is damn fine and it all worked great for me. +100 internets.

maybe I'll submit some art too~
>> No. 122320
>>122299
wouldn't it just be discord, like the show?
>> No. 122322
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122322
>>122315
And suddenly I find myself on the other side of the mirror, in the curious position of not understanding why my story was misunderstood. I had thought it clear enough that the point of the story was to tell a story, while not telling a story. The separate plots were simply the characters' individual views on the situation at hand. They attempted to create diverse characterizations, while giving pieces of the puzzle that, when assembled, would add up to the overall plot. Through their individual point of views, with enough effort on the reader's part—although clearly I asked too much of them—it could be deduced that they had all lived in a tribe, where the water supply had gone bad, and they had had to leave.

The chief, Night Strider, had drank the water and become ill. He hallucinated a dream and believed it to be the answer to their troubles, and led them on a journey. Several ponies died on the journey to nowhere, and Night Strider lost more of his sanity with each passing night, even thinking that the voices in his head would give him the answer if he allowed them to take the lives of his kin. That much I had thought to be obvious.

What I am not surprised that nopony picked up on, was that they were chasing a dream in the sense that they all dreamed of a sanctuary, but they were paying for it with their lives, and they would still never reach it. It was supposed to be a double meaning.

Another problem is one I simply could not find a way to avoid. That is, the OCs. their names were mostly unimportant, and keeping track of them was entirely unnecessary. The point was to follow the secondary story, because they didn't actually do anything in the time frame covered.

And then, of course, there is the point that this wasn't pony. Indeed, I did not find a way to fit into 750 748 words enough detail to nail them down as ponies. I had intended to find a name for the disease, and several other factors, but I guess it was a fool's errand.
Tl;Dr this story didn't really belong in this competition, and we all knew it, but I tried anyway.

>thread's about to autosage, who wants to shoot at me? :D
>> No. 122331
>>122322
I deduced all of that from the story. It's not that you didn't have all of the parts, it's that they didn't add up to a whole that was satisfying in its execution or result.

My interpretation was that he got the vision dreams, ones that would supposedly lead to their freedom, in exchange for his sanity. Your explanation is actually lacking since the dreams came after the search for refuge. More specifically, after ponies had begun to die. Ergo, them dying is not the price for the dream; more like a down-payment, it anything.
>and they would still never reach it.
There is nothing to hint at them utterly failing (from what I can remember). You're expecting the reader to make complete conjuncture at that point.

>>122319
I'm glad you enjoyed it. Is there anything you think needed improving or was especially effective?

>>122315
Still making a reply.
>> No. 122332
>>122315
>The "its" here really wants to refer to the chair, not the chin.
The chair was added in after-the-fact since I decided to overcompensate on the surrounding details after my last story was accused of being too talking-heads-ish. As such, I appear to have botched the addition.

>You've got two successive participles modifying "string," which always bogs a sentence down.
Duly noted. I'll cut the loose strings bu-dum-pish.

>Feels more like a dash or colon
I've always been iffy about semi-colons in dialogue. I'll change it to a dash.

>One word, unless you literally mean a large mop of hair
Hey, it's Tartarus, baby! Anything goes down here.
Actually, I think I might just make his boss a demonically possessed mop now...

>Missing word
Damnit, I went over that sentence no less than three times when remaking it and I still screwed it up.

>Given that it's a quote, I'm surprised you didn't use a similar font to the one for Death.
Damn, you're right, I totally should have. Since it's a quote though shouldn't it be capitalized? I will admit I'm not quite familiar with the rules for that.
>Bravo on that, btw.
I was wondering if anyone would notice. Thanks ^_^

>I like this story
Glad I could give you something worthwhile to read.

>Nice macabre humor
My favourite kind.

>then the twist ending.
I'm not sure if I'd call it a "twist ending". However, your bit about Scoots getting Dash's wings gave me an idea for an alternate ending which would certainly fit that description. I'll see if I can't whip up something later tonight.

>Anyway, technically, Scoot could still live in Cloudsdale, because the magic that lets her walk on clouds would still be there
I decided to run with the headcanon that the wings are necessary for a pegasus to walk on clouds.

>Overdone premise, blah blah.
Scootaloo being an orphan adopted by Dash? Yes, I suppose so. I just didn't least want to do another story with her wanting to fly and instead decided to subvert it with her other actual, canon dream.
>> No. 122334
>>122332
>Since it's a quote though shouldn't it be capitalized? I will admit I'm not quite familiar with the rules for that.
If it's an attributable quote, as in he's relating a specific thing that someone has said, then it would be capitalized. If it's not really a specific instance, or a case where you're using the quotes for a euphemism, or a situation where you'd envision using "air quotes" (heh), then you don't capitalize. This case seemed like one where the phrase is said quite often. If you meant the line to be something that was only ever said once, then it is a quote of a specific instance, and would be capitalized.
>> No. 122336
>>122331
On that one, actually, there was the hint of Thunderstreak noting that the horizon had not changed in weeks. He knew they were going nowhere, but he was following Grassblade. Also, they began the search only after the animals started going crazy, and I stated that "the fates had allowed him to remember the dream only after he'd gone mad from drinking the water" indicating that the search in fact did not begin until the dreams started.
>> No. 122337
>>122315
Wow, ouch!

I think I need now to walk the path of shame and sacrifice my word processor to the almighty semicolon. Anyway, I suppose I'll think hard on exactly how Celestia'a character develops.

Also, to my impressionist mind, bubbling and gentle is not a contradiction. Though I meant more "clear" than really "white."

>Accentuate the interruption by having it be last. That way, the very next thing we read is what interrupts it. It doesn't work here because it sounds like he still has time to walk after he's cut off.

Ah, unless he is interrupted by his own stepping forward...

Not buying it? I guess I'll have to sacrifice my typewriter to the mighty em dash.

I didn't know stacking participle phrases was any kind of crime. There goes my keyboard.
>> No. 122339
>>122334
Well, it was supposed to be something Dᴇᴀᴛʜ himself said (which is why I lamented my forgetting to make it small caps in my initial reply), so it would have been capitalized.

>>122336
Very well. I admittedly did not go back to the story to double-check my facts. I'm at work, so I'm trying to spit these replies out as fast as my ability allows.
>> No. 122342
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122342
>>122315
Thanks for the review. I think the story's biggest problem is, as you've said, making it believable that the criminals would honour their end of the bargain and that Rarity wouldn't report them. I'll give some thought to the former, and, come to think of it, I don't think there's any reason why I should stop Rarity from reporting the criminals, so I'll probably do that.

On another note, an extended version of Thirty Dollars will be hitting the front page of FIMFiction soon.
>> No. 122346
Pancakes and Apples
Now that I know who wrote this one, it might help to discuss a couple of things here relative to another review I recently did...

I liked what you were trying to do here, but this is why it didn't work for me:

We get a repeating pattern that doesn't go anywhere. Pancakes to apples to hearts/blood. Over and over again. And nothing was really different each time. A little different in the circumstances that bring each about, but no difference in what happens with each. This leads to the second issue.

The repetition didn't build. It really was just repetition. We weren't eased into it at the beginning, so we were already at full blast. Or as full-blast as it gets. The severity didn't ramp up, so it doesn't build toward anything. Each time through the motif, something significantly different should happen to distinguish it from the previous loop. And that leads into the third issue.

Related, but more specific: Applejack's reaction to it never changes. In fact, we don't get a reaction. Now, having no reaction to these images is certainly disturbing in and of itself, but we're left to infer even that. We aren't shown that she's impassive toward what she sees, and either that or some sense of revulsion would be needed to establish an emotional tone to the story.

The whole thing felt too factual, where it should feel emotionally raw, even if that emotion is indifference. Build up the tension of what she sees and increase her horror at it or increase the reader's unease that she's just taking it in stride.

You've got a usable horror/psycho premise here. Now make it come alive.
>> No. 122353
>>122293
Whoa whoa. I missed this.

Cutie marks represent being bound by destiny.

That is fucking beautiful. If you don't write that, I will.

I didn't ask for reviews on To Equestria because the comments I saw already let me know the mistakes I made, and because really the story was just a cute idea written for the sake of this contest. It doesn't have anything more to say than what it already said, so I'll just put it in the "really short little fun things" bin and move on.

Glad people liked it!

Still upset that people votebombed it for some reason!
>> No. 122372
>>122353

>That is fucking beautiful. If you don't write that, I will.

Y'know, it's a funny thing, but... I'm kind of playing around with this idea in my own fic. I haven't gotten to the point in the narrative when it becomes relevant yet, but it's part of the plan.
>> No. 122374
>>122346
Sweet, a bonus review.
I'm glad you brought the repetition up. It was something I was worried about, but no one really mentioned so I didn't think it was a problem. While writing it, I originally thought that sticking with the same pattern was going to mean something. Then I finished and realized that it didn't go anywhere. However, out of laziness, I decided not to edit to heavily. This was the last story I wrote and right before I fell asleep. A crappy excuse, but it's all I got. Same thing also goes for the lack of emotion. I made a decision to avoid showing a reaction in favor of more imagery, due to the limited word count. Alas, I probably could have struck a balance and done just fine.

However, now that the write-off is done, and I've got some time before the next write-off, I'll try and spruce this up a bit. Make it less repetitive and more emotional. Anyway, thanks for the "free" review Pascoite.
>> No. 122376
>>122315
Thanks a lot! Error fixed, will ruminate on the generosity angle. As for "it's not a story"... Well, I didn't mean for it to have a story as much as I did for it to set a scene. Is it that big of a problem?

And thank you to everyone who posted a review.
>> No. 122412
Hoorah, we autosaged a minific contest. I hope y'all are proud.

>>122353
>>122372

Hold up there, gentlemen. While I'm not one to loose his cool for the sole fact another's story is thematically similar, I'm still planning to expand on my ideas. Now, don't get me wrong, if anyone wants to explore that particular theme--it is indeed a good one--do go ahead. Just don't take anything wholesale from me, as I might just take offense.
>> No. 122415
>>122412

Oh, no worries, mate. I've got a much different interpretation of Equestria's history going in my story. "Destiny" is simply one theme which occupies a considerable part of the narrative, and one of the characters cites cutie marks as evidence of its influence on every pony's life.
>> No. 122418
>>122315
Woo! Many thanks.

>>holding a letter in his teeth.
>Would be nice to see this affect his speech, either by imitating it or through word choice/description.
*repeats the phrase "Apple Bloom? Mail's here" like fifteen times with his teeth together, and is glad he lives alone* Eh, it doesn't seem to be affecting me too much, and I kinda prefer to undersell it after one embarrassing time of overdoing it far too much :3. An extra description would probably suffice.

>Why didn't you name her Nemo?
*facehoof* heh... While that's a little too on-the-nose, I might just end up changing her color scheme to orange and white >_>

>Nostalgic is an attitude, not a physical description. Show me her expression
Eeyup. Was short on word count lazy, got caught.

>I'm getting an inconsistent picture of each character, though.
That's what I'm noticing. The more feedback I'm getting, I'm noticing that everyone is coming away with different opinions on each of the characters. While I normally see that as a sign of engaging storytelling, I think this time it's a sign of vagueness on my part. Scoots's lack of any signs of regret is an out-and-out mistake, Sweetie was a little too subtle and a little too rewarded as you pointed out, and AB was a bit too heavy-handed in comparison, I think. Still, I've gotten at least one commenter now on each of the CMC, claiming "___ got shafted the most", and I do enjoy seeing those differing opinions.

>Thus, I can't tell whether your message was "ho hum, had to embrace boring reality" or "childish things pass, and they found new paths." Maybe a little of both?
tl;dr'ing my earlier post, yeah a bit of both. If you pretend I fixed Scoots's scene, they all show a bit of regret, yet life really isn't as bad as they see it.
>> No. 122419
Time for a new thread, then?

>New prompt is "Deal with the Devil"
I'd like to think my mini was the reason for it, but I'm probably overselling myself. Regardless, I have a plan in store, but I'm worried about it being identified since it's mashing several ideas I've publicly announced before together. Hopefully people have a shorter memory span than I give them credit for.
>> No. 122420
>>122418
On seeing Scootaloo as the worst off... I completely missed what her job was. I thought she was just helping out that young filly and taken her on like Dash did for her. With Derpy's involvement, I assumed Scoot was a postal worker.
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