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Sialia

First Post
BardStephenFox said:
Upper right of each post has a Post # in thread. (Like this one is probably 40 if nobody posted while writing this) Click on that. It will open up the post in a seperate window. You can then bookmark that.
Brilliant!

I never noticed that the number was clickable. This is a handy thing to know just generally. Bookmark has been created, and now I'm off to gather more.

I will never have to hunt for a lost thread again! Whee!

Thanks soooo much for compiling the list BSF.
 
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Piratecat

Writing Fantasy Gumshoe!
Macbeth, I've got to know. In "Distortions," where did you get the number "723 Main St." from? My house address is 723, although not on Main Street, and it seems like a weird coincidence.
 

Macbeth

First Post
Piratecat said:
Macbeth, I've got to know. In "Distortions," where did you get the number "723 Main St." from? My house address is 723, although not on Main Street, and it seems like a weird coincidence.
Now that is an odd coincidence. The basis for the number came from the Dark*Matter Polyhedron Minigame, where they recommend throwing the number 23 in random places, to create a pattern the PCs may pick up on, but with no real meaning. I just needed an address to fill in the dialogue, and the number 23 came to mind since I had recently read the minigame. But I havent seen many 2 digit addresses, so I threw a 7 in front to make it an address.

It's odd how things work out. The 23 part of the address was just supposed to be a nod to Dark*Matter, and the 7 was completely random, and they combined to form your address. Wierd
 

mythago

Explorer
Comments on It's Elemental

I really liked a lot of the little details--the friendship between the two mages, the bells Perri wears on her clothing.

I would have liked to see a lot more from the fire mage. Why does he go berserk and want to cleanse the earth with fire? It would have been interesting (though not the only possibility) if he had some relationship to Carson, or Perri, or one of the other mages beforehand.
 

Zhaneel

First Post
Thanks Mythago.

It is amazing what 72 hours does to my brain. Those would make the story much more interesting. I'm committed to rewriting that story.

Anyone else with comments? On any of the three stories I had up? I'm looking at rewriting 2/3 or all for publication. Looking for comments more on general story stuff rather than on picture usage as that will now go by the wayside.

Zhaneel
 

BSF

Explorer
Zhaneel said:
Thanks Mythago.

It is amazing what 72 hours does to my brain. Those would make the story much more interesting. I'm committed to rewriting that story.

Anyone else with comments? On any of the three stories I had up? I'm looking at rewriting 2/3 or all for publication. Looking for comments more on general story stuff rather than on picture usage as that will now go by the wayside.

Zhaneel

I fully intend to have comments. But, frankly, I ran out of energy. I hope to resume later this week though. :)
 

BSF

Explorer
Comments on "My God"

OK Macbeth,
Nifty little story. I like it.

The first few lines were a little hard for me, but that could just as easily have been a plummeting blood sugar level as anything about the story. By the time Christi left, I was hooked and wanted to read it through. :)

One thing I have trouble with while reading it is trying to determine Michael's "voice". I can't tell exactly how indignant he is that his plans for Christi are falling apart. I can't tell how he feels at Gabriel's arrival, I can't tell how bothered by the goat he is. You tell us a bit about these things, but I don't really feel them. You do a much better job describing Gabriel.

Now, it is not always easy to convey character voice, so don't take that the wrong way. But, if you can find a way to bring in more character then I think Michael would be a character that can be better empathized with.

Picture Use:
Yoshimay Kurosawa was great! Very interesting way to use the picture. I would really like to have seen more "soul borrowing" because it has some very interesting implications, and it is dang nifty flavor. It would have also established that ability a little bit more. If Gabriel had borrowed a soul from around the time period of when Michael's ancestors were doing such things, it would have helped make Yoshimay Kurosawa feel a little less forced.

The relics were interesting. A difficult image to tie in, but you found a way. It isn't the strongest picture usage, but I didn't think of it as a throwaway either.

The introduction of God is obviously important! :)

The rest, might be described as nothing surprising, but nothing wasted either. I did like the comment on the lines in grandmother's face being representative of every secret she had learned. For me, that brings the picture into more relevancy. Whether everyone else will agree or not, I don't know.

Overall, I enjoyed it. I would have liked it to have been a little longer and maybe to explore some ideas in a bit more depth, but it was enjoyable and a bit thought-provoking. Always a good thing.

Anyway, I will see you tonight for the game. I will reserve my non-literary commentary until then.
 

Macbeth

First Post
Thanks for the feedback. I'll post a more in depth response later, possibly later today if I can get moved out of my room, but I wanted to quickly agree that yes, it should have been longer. I had more ideas, but I just ran out of energy. The last couple of weeks have been an unbelievable drain, what with all that I've had to do, and I just couldn't find the right way to add more. if I had more energy, I think I could expand on it considerably, but I'm just running on empty at this point. Tonight's game will be a nice chance to recharge my batteries, so to speak.
 

Eeralai

First Post
Hooray! You finished! My favorite part of the story was Gabriel being able to pull souls into his body. That was excellent. But, because he could do this, I would have thought he would have been able to find God a lot sooner. I also was bothered by the fact that the grandma knew how to release God, but instead of releasing Him, she just became a nun. It didn't sound like the whole family had to thank Him, just one member. If you decide to add to the story, I think flushing out how God should be released would help. Thanks for the story! It was a fun read.
 

Eeralai

First Post
BTW, have you watched Dogma recently? That's what I couldn't help comparing your story to. I think Gabriel needs to be more like Alan Rickman, but that's just a personal preference ;)
 


Zhaneel

First Post
MacBeth,

Just finished [quickly] reading through your work. I did like it, but it didn't really draw me. And, to me, the thematic ending was a little weak. And the sledgehammer at the end telling us how Micheal felt [did you choose Micheal for the ArcAngel of war?] rather than a showing that we could interpret didn't work for me.

As for picture use:
I felt that the need to pull in the pictures drove the story, rather than being a part of it. If that makes sense. Don't get me wrong, I liked the picture usage, but I felt the story was pulled off the tracks by them.

1) God being the little boy. I actually really liked this and thought it worked well.

2) Mysteries: I liked the explanation but I wanted to see him use them. Like open the book to find out about Gaberial. Use the picture to find the goat. Etc. QUESTION: Did he have to return the relics with God being back?

3) The sword/Japanese girl. Didn't work for me. The idea of Gaberial pullling souls and that soul in particular is the major example of pictures derailing the story.

4) The bloody goat. I really wanted to see him getting into the sacrifice, not being told that he was. I think the image worked, but since there was NO effect on Micheal or God, it was again, to me, a picture use derailing the story and not fully contributing.

5) Grandma. I liked this picture use. The wrinkles comment really worked for me. I would have liked her to test him. And I agree that if she KNEW how to release God but didn't then she's a twit. IF you explain that she couldn't because she married into the family, that would help [i'm assuming here]

Those are the ones I remember, I think I'm missing one. Let me know.

But, overall, I liked the story. Forgive the constant hitting on show versus tell. It is something that was pointed out to me in my stories and now I'm seeing it everywhere. *sigh*

Zhaneel
 

BSF

Explorer
My feeling is that Macbeth is going to get dinged on show vs tell as well. I have taken rebukes for that as well and I still have a hard time working around it. :)

I will stand by liking the picture use for Yoshimay Kurosawa. But, I will say that I think I understand why you feel it derails the story. For me, that particular soul usage reminded me of a scene in C.S. Lewis' "The Last Battle" in the Chronicles of Narnia. I asked Macbeth about it last night before gaming and I did pick up what he was trying to allude at. Of course, I do know Macbeth as more than a screen name, so it might be easier to pick up these things.

In fact, that is my primary reason for reiterating my "like" for that picture. If the allusions of that picture were not picked up on a broad level, then ultimately the picture usage was a failure. So, for Macbeth, it is important for him to hear the difference in opinion so he can try to strengthen his writing from it.

As to what he was trying to allude to, I will leave that up to Macbeth to comment on if he chooses to. Though, he is just finishing the semester and will probably be a sporadic presence on the boards for a couple of weeks. Still, I know he will find a way to check to see if there are any judgements. :)
 

mythago

Explorer
It's always interesting how people have different takes/likes/dislikes on a story--I was struck in the last round how the one thing Piratecat really liked was the one thing arwink absolutely hated.

I agree it would be better if Grandma's "say thank you" were more ambiguous. I took it as Grandma insisting on politeness, and Michael suddenly being struck as to how that would solve his situation, rather than Grandma knowing the solution and hinting at it. But I could see how it could read the other way too.

Zhaneel said:
It is something that was pointed out to me in my stories and now I'm seeing it everywhere.
Occupational hazard of being a writer. :) But you can see it when it pops up in your own stuff now, and that's definitely a plus.
 
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Zhaneel

First Post
Review of Mythago's story

Interesting. You never fail to surprise me with the breadth of types of stories you go after. The German occult story is getting [IMO] a little overdone in the media, but I'll forgive you. ;-)

I feel the story was well told, but the ending was a little disappointing. Like maybe there wasn't quite enough time to fully give it the energy it needed. I dunno, I may be projecting again but it seemed like the ending was a little too easy. I didn't feel there was a struggle.

There were some PoV problem [I think more just missing words to put things in context] and I had a hard time keeping the two hit men differentiated.

On picture use: I think it worked well. I liked that you included the extra items from mystery & that some of the pieces played a part throughout the story. I felt that Jakod's intro & picture use there were weak... reminding me of Vritra's Return and the complaints I had there. I liked the sword-wielding pic very much. The "one step" [which I forgot for Macbeth] was pretty good, but I just don't liek the pic. The piano portion of the Texan's story didn't quite work for me. I find it interesting that both you & Macbeth chose basically the same thing for the nun pic.

Overall, I liked this story. I've seen stronger from you in terms of picture usage.

I'm not sure which I liked better. They are both very good and very seperate in my head. Interested to see where this goes.

Zhaneel
 

mythago

Explorer
Thanks for the feedback. I think the ending suffered a little from the enormous headache I developed around page 10, and the fact that I was trying to avoid turning it into a room-by-room battle through the hospital--which, in retrospect, might have actually been more interesting.

The German occult story is getting [IMO] a little overdone in the media

Absolutely. I deliberately wanted to do a two-fisted action/adventure/pulp story, with the plain-spoken All American guy and the witty Brit fighting evil Nazis bent on using sinister Things Man Was Not Meant to Know to take over the free world, etc. etc. I wanted to do it straight (i.e. not as a parody) yet still make it interesting.
 

Macbeth

First Post
Whew. All I can say about the critizisms of my story: mea culpa. I know that there were some serious problems, incosistencies and showing vs. telling chief amog them. To be honest, I just sisn't have a whole lot of inspiration left. I was tired, and I put out the best I could. I know there are problems, and thanks for the feedback. Hopefully next Cermic DM I'll have enough energy to follow through the whole thing, but so many things were going on I just burnt out. I'm intersted to see how this turns out.
 

Zhaneel

First Post
Macbeth said:
Whew. All I can say about the critizisms of my story: mea culpa.

No apologies. It was a good story. It was the best you could do under the constraints of the contest, and I, for one, enjoyed reading it.

Remember what PC said. Don't apologize for your works. The critism is how to make it better, not "omg what a horrible story."

I'm not afraid of saying that, if it is true. It was not true for any of your stories.

Zhaneel
 

Sialia

First Post
I enjoyed reading both stories.

I especially liked Macbeth's use of "Grief" and Mythago's use of "The First Mystery."

(I promised Piratecat I'd tell him what Grief actually was a picture of after the stories and judging were all in, and would only tell him up front that it was a painting from real life.

Oddly enough, while both the subject of Grief and I remember the moment in which I painted it very clearly, neither of us can now recall what led us to that particularly awful moment.)

I thought Mythago's story ocasionally suffered from stopping forward action to pick up too much backstory. I'd have liked the flashback to "grief" better if it had become relevant again at a later point in the story--if I had needed to know that particular piece of history to get to the ending. Perhaps if it had been broken into several scattered pieces through the tale so that the whole picture didn't really come together until some critical juncture. Strongest assets of the story were the attention to locale and culture--I asked for a story that could distinguish between New Jersey and Ohio, and I got that and change to spare.

Picky, tiny detail for Macbeth--the sacrifice probably should have been done with a super sharp knife across the throat, rather than a disembowelling. But blood sprinkled everywhere is right on. Good picture usage--I liked the way you saw the altar and the blood in the inkblot.
 

mythago

Explorer
What can I say? Those guys just wouldn't shut up when I wanted them to.

I also have a habit of putting backstory in italics or 'flashback sections' and really wanted to avoid that--I wanted the characters to tell their story, not simply to jump back into their minds.

The 'mystery' picture was really the heart of the story. I liked being able to put things in the photo (the gold-stamped title) that you couldn't see in the illustration, and taking items out of it to be used later.

I hope I'm not coming off as sounding defensive--I appreciate all the comments, I'm trying to explain what was going on in my head rather than say "Your criticism is wrong!"
 
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