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Fantasy Faction Writers => Archived Contests => Monthly Writing Contest => [JUN 2015] Multiple POVs => Topic started by: xiagan on August 01, 2015, 10:52:50 AM

Title: [Jun 2015] - Multiple POVs - Critique Thread
Post by: xiagan on August 01, 2015, 10:52:50 AM
So here is the possibility to get critiques for your stories entered in our multiple POVs writing contest - and to give critique as well.

If everybody wants and gives critique, this thread will be pure chaos soon, while 2-3 critiques for as many stories shouldn't be a problem. We'll see how it goes and adapt if necessary. :)

So what we're doing is this:
1. Everybody who wants critique for his story posts in here.*
2. Everybody who wants to do a critique for a specific story (whose writer has asked for critique) posts it in here.

IF this thread is overrun fast, I'm splitting it so that every story has it's own one to avoid confusion. :)

* I know that critique isn't always easy to handle, especially if you are not used to it. So if you feel more comfortable receiving it in private, people can send it via pm. They can post here that they sent a critique via pm so that others know about it.

At the moment I don't think it necessary that we create a system balancing given/received critiques. However, if it turns out to be unfair and some people are giving critiques without receiving some (or the other way round) we have to add one.

Basic rules for critiquing:

This is just a small guideline for those that haven't done critiques before, stolen from this forum's writing section.
Quote
Critiquing Other’s Work
1. Please read what the poster is asking for before you post your critique.
2. Critique the writing, not the writer.  Never, “You are...” or “You should...” but rather, “The writing is...” or “The story should...”
3. We all have different levels of writing ability here, keep that in mind when critiquing.
4. Find what is right in each piece as well as what is wrong.
5. Remember that subject matter is personal. You don't have to like a story to give it a fair critique.
6. Remember what your biases are and critique around them.
7. Remember that real people wrote this stuff, and real people have real feelings. Things you may not say while critiquing: “That’s awful.” “That’s stupid.” “You couldn’t write your way out of a paper bag.”
Title: Re: [Jun 2015] - Multiple POVs - Critique Thread
Post by: Raptori on August 01, 2015, 11:07:54 AM
Would love critique as always, anything and everything.  :)
Title: Re: [Jun 2015] - Multiple POVs - Critique Thread
Post by: Henry Dale on August 01, 2015, 11:50:00 AM
Would love critique as always, anything and everything.  :)

I liked it because there was this cat thingy
Once again we find ourselves in Sora's shoes (she's getting quite familiar  :P) and this time she's chasing a cat.
While it's neat that we sometimes find ourselves in catvision, it didn't really feel very catlike to me. Where are the smells, the sensations that come with being a cat? I think you may need to up the senses a bit more  :D
Otherwise I loved it of course. Sneaking around with Sora and co is starting to turn into a habit :3
Keep it up!


I'd like some critique myself if anyone has spare time.
Title: Re: [Jun 2015] - Multiple POVs - Critique Thread
Post by: JMack on August 01, 2015, 12:15:02 PM
I'd be interested in critique as well, if folks have the time.

I'm interested in:
> If you didn't enjoy it, why? If you did enjoy it, why?
> Were the characters believable?
> Was the dialogue believable?
> Was the story clear?
> Was the prose interesting?
> How well did the two POVs work?

I'm not interested in:
> Didn't have enough POV shift for a Multiple POV month

Thanks!
Title: Re: [Jun 2015] - Multiple POVs - Critique Thread
Post by: Nora on August 01, 2015, 03:38:48 PM
Would love critique as always, anything and everything.  :)

I liked it because there was this cat thingy
Once again we find ourselves in Sora's shoes (she's getting quite familiar  :P) and this time she's chasing a cat.
While it's neat that we sometimes find ourselves in catvision, it didn't really feel very catlike to me. Where are the smells, the sensations that come with being a cat? I think you may need to up the senses a bit more  :D
Otherwise I loved it of course. Sneaking around with Sora and co is starting to turn into a habit :3
Keep it up!


I'd like some critique myself if anyone has spare time.

Henry, I made you quite a hasty one on the voting thread! Sounds harsher than it should, as I'm won't to do.
Title: Re: [Jun 2015] - Multiple POVs - Critique Thread
Post by: m3mnoch on August 01, 2015, 04:47:56 PM
i would love to hear anyone's thoughts on why they didn't vote for mine.  granted, i've pushed and learned a TON in my little two months writing these kinds of things, so i suspect i already know the answers.

still -- please let me know what you didn't like about it!
Title: Re: [Jun 2015] - Multiple POVs - Critique Thread
Post by: xiagan on August 01, 2015, 05:04:53 PM


i would love to hear anyone's thoughts on why they didn't vote for mine.  granted, i've pushed and learned a TON in my little two months writing these kinds of things, so i suspect i already know the answers.

still -- please let me know what you didn't like about it!
It's not necessarily a dislike. It may just be that others were better in the eyes of the voters.

You got votes, so at least some people thought it was under the top 5 of the 20 stories. :)


Title: Re: [Jun 2015] - Multiple POVs - Critique Thread
Post by: m3mnoch on August 01, 2015, 05:14:02 PM


i would love to hear anyone's thoughts on why they didn't vote for mine.  granted, i've pushed and learned a TON in my little two months writing these kinds of things, so i suspect i already know the answers.

still -- please let me know what you didn't like about it!
It's not necessarily a dislike. It may just be that others were better in the eyes of the voters.

You got votes, so at least some people thought it was under the top 5 of the 20 stories. :)

heh.  true, true.  and i'm hoping folks didn't dislike it altogether.

however, i'm assuming there were elements folks didn't like.  i'd like to avoid those in the future, so it would help if someone would be kind enough to point them out to me.  (i'm lucky in that my ego makes me impervious to harsh criticism - cutting your teeth professionally as a creative in an ad agency will do that.  you can either handle pretentious evisceration of your work or you can't.)

anyway.  personally, looking back now, i think horace was waaaay over the top in his physical "i'm charlie chaplin" cringeworthy, goofy reactions to danyell.  i don't think the pov thing was well enough executed.  and i think there are a bunch of painful sentences liked this:

Quote
Danyell's face screwed into one of his famous “I'm going to make this right” looks caught somewhere between focus and quavering brain cramps.

i mean.  erg.  i wrote that.
Title: Re: [Jun 2015] - Multiple POVs - Critique Thread
Post by: Raptori on August 01, 2015, 06:05:28 PM
Would love critique as always, anything and everything.  :)

I liked it because there was this cat thingy
Once again we find ourselves in Sora's shoes (she's getting quite familiar  :P ) and this time she's chasing a cat.
While it's neat that we sometimes find ourselves in catvision, it didn't really feel very catlike to me. Where are the smells, the sensations that come with being a cat? I think you may need to up the senses a bit more  :D
Otherwise I loved it of course. Sneaking around with Sora and co is starting to turn into a habit :3
Keep it up!


I'd like some critique myself if anyone has spare time.
Yeah it'd have been cool to have made Pepper's sections a bit more vivid, but we only had 100 words for each bit of her viewpoint so it was a bit too tight for that. Maybe next time we write a Pepper story. That said, I don't think that there's really that big a difference between humans and other mammals in terms of how they think and how they experience the world.  ;)


On your story, I agree with Nora's critique on the other thread - I enjoyed it but it felt like something was lacking. I think it might have been that the incident with the dragon wasn't very strong, so it felt a little anticlimactic. It would probably have been more exciting for me if it was from Donald's perspective - that way it'd have been a more immediate experience, whereas the way it is now feels a bit more like you're telling rather than showing.

I also think that since the characters are meant to be cartoony, you could have cut down on the characterisation and focused on describing the setting more - after all, the park is the star (assuming you really wanted to go the JP route) - without losing anything significant. That way you could've built up a sense of wonder at the world and perhaps an ominous note when things start to go wrong, without it being quite as filtered behind what the characters are thinking.

Other than that it was enjoyable, and you managed to capture the JP/JW vibe really well.  :)
Title: Re: [Jun 2015] - Multiple POVs - Critique Thread
Post by: Nora on August 02, 2015, 01:23:07 AM
Ok, just a few words...

I voted for SJ Budd because your shadow hunter was simple and cool and efficient. I had an idea of what it might be about but never any certainty, and the fact that I really had to wait to the end to make sure of what I was reading really won my love. I liked your use of the present tense. Good job!

Same idea with The survivors by @ArcaneArtsVelho (http://fantasy-faction.com/forum/index.php?action=profile;u=40090) I voted and liked it for the same reasons. Well written and catching me till the end to make sure who's talking. The PoVs were well managed and well written and the melodramatic effect worked really well, giving a little bitter sweet taste to the ending. 
Title: Re: [Jun 2015] - Multiple POVs - Critique Thread
Post by: ArcaneArtsVelho on August 02, 2015, 12:35:35 PM
Thanks, @Nora (http://fantasy-faction.com/forum/index.php?action=profile;u=40237) !
I was going to PM you but might as well write my say here. I really liked your story The Escape and voted for it. I found the concept of the story very original and imaginative and loved the fact that I had no clue about Keira's condition until they caught only one girl. Yes, the writing was somewhat hasty (as you yourself said in the other thread), but I think there was only two or three places in the whole story where I stopped for a moment because of it. The only other slightly negative thing I had written down in my notes was that the end of the story could have been more compact/concise. But yeah, I think it was a good story and that it could become a great story with a simple re-write.  :)


If anyone would like to write a few words about my story, I'd be glad to read it. No need to do an in-depth critique, though; it's a simple story, so a simple critique will do.  ;)