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  1. #11
    Rogue Mutt

    Re: Your opinions solicited

    and if you frequent the horror isle

    Is the horror isle next to Monster Island?

  2. #12
    Sheila Leverson

    Re: Your opinions solicited


    I think your revision of the text is quite helpful. It shows, rather than tells, what a prologue should accomplish. As a reader, I've never thought prologues were terrible... sometimes unnecessary, perhaps, but I always gave the author the benefit of the doubt. If I didn't like the prologue, I simply wouldn't read the book: no different than if I didn't like the first chapter.

    As an aside, what do you think about epilogues?


    Food for thought. Brings to mind a Robert Service poem, I believe it is entitled "Domestic Scene", in which the first verse depicts a happy home, but the rest of poem reveals a particular struggle of each family member.


    Perhaps I was trying to hard to analogize the boy's actions with playing horseshoes. "Ringing" is a horseshoe term that apparently doens't translate well to the horns of bulls. And you're right-- letting the boy score on practically all kittens gives him super-powers that the story won't support.

    Battle Angel,

    I had envisioned the lad sitting on top of a fence a safe distance from getting trampled. I suppose the reader can't read my mind though, eh?


    Thanks for making me laugh. Hopefully I'm a few decades from being a putrid old anything! But within your thoughts are a few nuggets for which I am grateful. "Make the items belong to the people" should be obvious but I missed it quite a bit ("the muslin apron" suffered from a revision of "the muslin of her apron".)

    "Metal cars" was meant to disavow the reader of the notion that they were modern cheap plastic cars. I see that simply saying "metal" doesn't quite communicate the fact that they are the toy cars of the '50s, not the toy cars of the post-'70s. Maybe adding a brand name known to be of that era only would help?

    Your note on the over-use of the evil superstition idea is interesting, but I'll not worry about that for now. The story itself is much more unique than that (and does not, actually, involve sadism OR masochism), but I can take the point that the opening/flashback/prologue (whichever it turns out to be) has conveyed the concept in a cliched way.

    I do appreciate everyone's time, generosity and help.

  3. #13
    Marty DeLand

    Re: Your opinions solicited

    Sheila, I flat liked it. Granny knows from experience not to let them younguns get too big for thar britches. ‘Fore they gits problematic, nip ‘er in the bud. I gather this ain’t the first time she had to take out her own kin. There are plenty of folks here who can help you improve this, but they’ve got a good piece to work with. Very nice and sick.

  4. #14
    Battle Angel

    Re: Your opinions solicited

    "I had envisioned the lad sitting on top of a fence a safe distance from getting trampled. I suppose the reader can't read my mind though, eh?"

    And I did look for this distinction in the text before opening my big mouth. It just says 'in the back pasture'.

    Something to keep in mind-When you enrage a bull, you never know what you'll get. I've seen a full grown bull clear a 4 foot fence. And I've seen them go through them. There's a reason they use those 6 foot tall heavy steel panels in rodeos (and bulls have still been known to get out.)

    He may want to do his kitten throwing from the safety of one of those orchard trees.

    But then again, what 6 year-old thinks it through that thoroughly?

    In the end, he's your little phsycopath, so I guess he'll do it however you want him to. <g>

  5. #15
    S B

    Re: Your opinions solicited

    "Maybe adding a brand name known to be of that era only would help?"

    No. All the major companies are still around and the lesser ones that have petered off are archaic by now.

    And the story already involves sadism, just so you know. Killing for one's pleasure and pastime is about as sadistic as possible. You might try not to contradict yourself on these grounds in the future. Try thinking: "What impression am I making on the coming generation?"

    I assure you, you will one day reap the reward for your writing, so if you MUST write at ALL, try writing stories that uplift AND cause dread. A full spectrum is best. But you have to lift us up so we can fall.

    Unless you stray far from this prologue / flashback, you shouldn’t seriously consider publication, because no one will seriously consider you.

  6. #16
    Gary Kessler

    Re: Your opinions solicited

    Wow. I had no idea there was a law that everything written had to be uplifting. Who knew? (Somebody forgot to tell Truman Capote, apparently.)

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