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Robinski

Robinski - 170606 - TCC, Chapter 1 - 3035 words (L)

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Well, here it is. You know the drill, whatever comes to mind, love it, hate it - gimme both barrels :) 

Otherwise, I think this pretty much speaks for itself.

Best, Robinski

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Ooh yay, more Quirk and Moth!

Overall

Well, this had all the charm and wit I remember from your first submission of Quirk and Moth, when you were following the WE prompts. I enjoyed every moment of it. I think these two are at their best when you spend equal amounts of time in Moth POV as you do Quirk. They balance each other out, and too much of one or the other makes the piece go stale. But when they can play off each other, it is gold. Nice work!

As I go

- props for paper birch description!

- LOL. Poor Canada. Channeling some authorial dislike, here? 

- page 4: I'm just loving every minute of Moth hating Canada and traipsing through the woods

- page five, where Moth turns and runs at the fence-- the part where she is 'attacked' I think needs to be expanded just a bit. There is so much lead up and then just two sentences of 'attack', that it feels too short and abrupt. She has built this up in her head so much that I expect more melodrama

- page six: I have no idea what happened here. Did her droid save her? 

- Ooh, I see, there is a footnote. I think that would work better actually in text. I was confused for too long and it lost something, and the footnote itself is very amusing!

- page 7: 'Inuit' is considered a racist slur. The native people of Canada are currently referred to as 'First Nations' peoples.

- page 8: 'The Quirk Agency'. LOL

- page 12: "You're busted, F-face" is my favorite line ever!

- great end line!

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Hey kais - thank's for reading and thanks for the thumbs-up. Good points, well made, as usual.

6 hours ago, kais said:

Poor Canada. Channeling some authorial dislike, here?

No, no - I love Canada with a passion, which is why Moth is allowed to hate it - and it's really superficial, obvs. My wife, who is Canadian - when we were in the Abbey Bookshop in Paris, which is run by a Canadian gentlemen - bought the book 'Why I Hate Canadians', by satirist Will Ferguson (Canadian). So you see, it's all connected.

6 hours ago, kais said:

the part where she is 'attacked' I think needs to be expanded just a bit

6 hours ago, kais said:

I have no idea what happened here.

Yes, definitely - thanks. Needs tidied and expanded, check.

6 hours ago, kais said:

I was confused for too long and it lost something

Ah yes, I see you treat footnotes like I do, wait till I get to the bottom of the page to read them, thereby defeating the purpose!!

6 hours ago, kais said:

racist slur

Gosh darn it, yes, and I knew this too. Very lazy on my part - thanks.

I'm so glad some of these lines are landing, and I completely accept what you say about the synergy between Q&M. The latter sections of TMM tend to work against that, but that doesn't mean that there isn't room for improvement in earlier scenes.

Great comments, thanks @kais

:) 

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Posted (edited)

- I really like the subtitle "A Moth and Quirk Debacle".

- Great description throughout. I love the line "Even the moon was warmer."

- Although I like the Tom Selleck reference, it goes back to an earlier criticism - would people in the future still remember Tom Selleck? 

- I also love the last line of a chair "unapologetically" exploding.

Edited by rdpulfer
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@kais @Robinski

I thought "Eskimo" was the slur? I'm certain that Inuit tends to be separate from First Nations, and that the major Inuit organizations have continued to represent themselves by the same identity in recent summits and meetings. First Peoples does tend to include both First Nations and Inuit, though.

---

Moth's recount of Quirk's convincing made me smile. It's brief, but very amusing. The trademark symbol also earns a smirk when it appeared. I guess I'd call that meta-humor. I, too, would want a SIG Sauer Pjackpot. I imagine it'd be gold.

Oh, do you want typos pointed out? I'm not certain, so I'll just do it once, but let me know. "...a patch of grey darkness again(st) the brown..." on page 4.

On a different technical level, I was also a tad bothered when you'd mention "15 metres" or "30 metres" at some points, and "ten metres" or "seven metres" at others. In hindsight, I see you switch to digits whenever it goes over ten, but reading it on its own was jarring. It felt unpredictable.

You know, oddly enough, I didn't expect animals even though you mentioned someone's warning about coyotes. I continued to think of gray blobs until they were called a "pair of coyotes" by the text. Since Moth was the only subject in motion during all those paragraphs after she remembered the warning, I didn't give the beasts a second thought. It's like they were hairless, breathless statues until she began to run. Them turning out to be androids further added to this confusion.

---

I didn't catch any flirting vibes, but the conversation between Quirk and Greiner was fun to follow. There were fun revelations and villainous monologues. The action of this viewpoint was very good at drawing my attention, but it did lose me briefly as I wondered why Moth didn't pull out her stubby pistol when she was under attack earlier.

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First of all, I love the title and subtitle.

 

Moth & Quirk: I liked both these characters from the moment Moth recounted how Quirk ‘convinced’ her she had to be the one to hike through the cold. They remind me of some my favorite fictional duos.

 

Setting: I am liking the setting so far. It’s interesting to puzzle out how similar and different it is, with a human presence on the moon and androids on one hand, and cars on the other.  The small passing remarks really give it flavor, like ‘even the moon was warmer’.  

 

Androids: I was a bit thrown off when you referred to the coyote-like machines as androids, since the term android means a robot in the shape of a human.

 

Footnotes: Loved the footnotes. Definitely a keeper :)

 

Correspondence: They have been planning the operation for a little while, at least a month (in the case of Moth), yet Greiner says that he and ‘Jefferson’ have corresponded for a long while. A month is not that long a time, so I’m confused whether he’s impersonating a real person who has been communicating with Greiner or if they’ve actually been communicating for a longer time and what for. Quirk doesn’t strike me as someone who would just correspond with a person he obviously doesn’t like and taking months to correspond with the target just to get an invite (with no guarantee beforehand that Greiner would do that) doesn’t seem very effective.

 

Dutch: I liked the Dutch in this, like the reference to the museum in Belgium. In Dutch though you don’t capitalize a surname prefix (tussenvoegsel), like ‘van’, ‘de’ or ‘der’ when another part of the name is in front of it. So instead of “Martin Van der Poom” it should be “Martin van der Poom”. When you have “bespectacled little Dutch Van der Poom”, that is correct.

 

Gun: When Moth was facing off against the coyotes she wished she had a gun. I took this to understand that she didn’t have one, so at the end, when she draws her stubby pistol, where did that come from?

 

Dark shape: I didn’t immediately connect the dark shape to Moth because Quirk wonders where the hell she was, even though the plan was for her to be on the balcony. So if the dark shape outside the window, banging the glass to get in, was her he should have wondered what was keeping her from getting in, rather than wondering where she was.

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It's your draft zero so i'm going to try to keep my grammerish comments to a minimum, but you have the word "dark" twice in the opening sentence

 
Also, opener is a wee bit on the long side
 
Again with the TMs. :/ I find them really distracting. (also technically unnecessary, and incorrect if the mark in question was registered properly. TM is for marks lacking official registration, which makes me wonder at all of these presumably savvy corporations who feel insecure enough to force the text to note the trademark, yet can't be bothered to register them properly and thus receive full legal protection for them (which again, presumably they care very much about since they're forcing this text to note the mark in the first place and/or the hypothetical narrator is frightened/intimidated enough by the companies to label the trade names with the symbol (but if it's the incorrect symbol then it's incorrectly implying fewer protections and the companies would be just as angry about that slight as they would be about having no symbol at all  (and this whole long confusingly-meta parenthetical aside could be obviated by simply not having the marks at all because they're not really necessary (and rather distracting!)  in the first place))))

Um. coyotes are small opportunistic predators much more likely to hunt small pets and sick or young livestock than humans, unless Moth is particularly tiny (I thought she was average for a 15-ish-year-old?). ... ... ...  Ahaa. robots.  Moth is pretty sheltered, isn't she? XD For the record, i don't have that much of a problem calling wolf-bots androids. *shrug*
 
I keep reading Sno-tex as Snot-ex.....
 
I don't like that first footnote very much. It could probably be worked into the main text without much difficulty.
 
the second and third footnotes aren't really necessary, either, tbh.  Though they're at least more reasonable than the first one.  footnotes for me are distracting in fiction, halt the tension and really break up the flow of the narration, because i immediately look at the bottom of the page to see what they are.  I don't know that the names and phrases really need to be translated in text (because, really, are they super vital to this story, or just fun flavor pieces? flavor can stay vague), but if they do, there should be a way to do it inline. 
 
you don't need the comma after the ellipses for the most part.
 
You footnoted the dutch museum but not the parisian one. Both are equally foreign-sounding to english speakers.
 
"The dark shadow flickering again" what dark shadow? is that another wolf-bot? or wait, it's M? 
 
"but not confused enough" awkward
 
wait, if she had the gun, why didn't she use it on the wolf-bots? As scared as she was and as pugnacious as she is, I'd've thought she'd've gone for the gun as soon as she got within firing distance of the bots. or at least, thought really hard about it and remembered she was supposed to be quiet, curse that cursed Q for making her cursing sneak and whatnot.
 
 I do like that ending though. I lol'd
 
Overall an interesting start to a new adventure and it seems quirk has most of his mojo back! 
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Hey RD, thanks for reading - much appreciated.

On 07/06/2017 at 0:19 AM, rdpulfer said:

- I really like the subtitle "A Moth and Quirk Debacle". - I guess it makes a promise to the reader that things will get messy, I think that's entirely likely. I've outlined about 75% of this story, which is more than the last one. I think there's a good chance things will get 'messed up'.

- Great description throughout. I love the line "Even the moon was warmer." - Awesome. It's something that fell away in TMM, I think, and something I'll need to address in my ongoing edit of that story.

- Although I like the Tom Selleck reference, it goes back to an earlier criticism - would people in the future still remember Tom Selleck? - Yes, it was a good point then, too. I really like the line; which just doesn't work if I say Charlie Chaplin - who is likely to be remembered longer, although I expect even his memory will fade in time. It probably also doesn't work for younger generation either, who are less likely to be aware of Tom's oeuvre. I'll take a chance on it now. If I ever have an editor, I'll mine their opinion.

Thank you! :) 

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Hey Vreeah, great to have your comments. Thank you.

20 hours ago, Vreeah said:

I thought "Eskimo" was the slur?

I'm going to research this more for sure. I know (after @kais reminded me that I knew...) that First Nation was the preferred nomenclature for lower mainland tribes. Wiki confirms and says "Those in the Arctic area are distinct and known as Inuit."

20 hours ago, Vreeah said:

Oh, do you want typos pointed out?

I have no objection to that at all - thanks!

20 hours ago, Vreeah said:

I see you switch to digits whenever it goes over ten

Yeah - I swept through TMM and made a couple of changes to use this approach to numerals consistently. I like numerals in SF, but not in 'olde world' fantasy. I would say that my approach here is an acknowledged approach in non-fiction, but I can understand that some might find it jarring. I'll see what the majority think, but I'm not sure where else I would draw the line. I'm really not keen on "three hundred and forty-six metres", for example, but neither do I like "2 metres" - although I think I'd go for the latter, if pressed. I love these technical comments!!

20 hours ago, Vreeah said:

I didn't give the beasts a second thought. It's like they were hairless, breathless statues until she began to run. Them turning out to be androids further added to this confusion.

Yeah - thanks for calling this. @kais called it too, quite rightly. The coyotes and that confrontation are under-written and under-described. I will go to work on that!

20 hours ago, Vreeah said:

as I wondered why Moth didn't pull out her stubby pistol when she was under attack earlier.

Thanks, yes, this is a continuity error. I will need to fix this in some way.

Really appreciate that comments, thanks Vreeah. When might we see some of your work up here again? I was enjoying Dreamt and Lost.

<R>

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Hey, Asmodemon, great to hear from you! Thanks for the comments.

15 hours ago, Asmodemon said:

I liked both these characters from the moment...

Aw, this comment is just so encouraging, thanks :)  TMM, the first story (which I can't remember if you read the start of) lost something in that Q and M, essentially, were apart for the second half. I've got a notion of how to make M more active in that second half, but not of how to bring them together. I was called on that extensively, so have worked this story to address that.

15 hours ago, Asmodemon said:

I am liking the setting so far.

For what it's worth, it falls solidly into 'write what you know'. I was in Creston, BC (at my in-laws house - which is Greiner's house) when I started the story, and have visited Creston many times over the years since 1987. There are more chapters are set in the town.

15 hours ago, Asmodemon said:

since the term android means a robot in the shape of a human

Yeah - good call. This is covered in the next chapter when S calls that one and corrects them.

15 hours ago, Asmodemon said:

Loved the footnotes

Awesome! I was thinking of putting more in TMM, but swithering, because I'm not sure they are universally popular. They are a good opportunity for added humour though.

15 hours ago, Asmodemon said:

They have been planning the operation for a little while, at least a month (in the case of Moth), yet Greiner says that he and ‘Jefferson’ have corresponded for a long while.

Good point, and nice catch. It's continuity again, I will need to fix this, or at least explain it. Originally, the gap between the adventures was longer. I could go back into TMM and use this as some mean foreshadowing of the next adventure. Hmm...

15 hours ago, Asmodemon said:

So instead of “Martin Van der Poom” it should be “Martin van der Poom”. When you have “bespectacled little Dutch Van der Poom”, that is correct.

This is priceless! Thanks for the catch.

16 hours ago, Asmodemon said:

when she draws her stubby pistol, where did that come from?

Yes, my bad. Just a continuity snafu - I will fix this.

16 hours ago, Asmodemon said:

he should have wondered what was keeping her from getting in, rather than wondering where she was.

Ok, you're the second person to mention this. I will address it.

Thanks so much for the comments, @Asmodemon, really appreciate them.

<R>

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Looks like everything has been well covered, but 'll comment anyway!

Agree with @kais. This has a lot of the fun of the early Q&M submissions. They play off each other well.
also agree the coyote attack was a little sudden, and I would have loved more actual flirting between G and Q.


pg 3: "This was no place for a good Milanese girl"
--this whole paragraph is excellent.

pg 3: "Even the Moon was warmer"
--lol. Not inspired by recent travels at all, eh?

pg 4: "SnotexTM"
--I think this is pronounced SNOW-tex, but was reading about sobs and mentally parsed it as SNOT-ex

pg 4: "and with a reconstructed leg"
--Still want to know more about the resolution at the end of the last story...

pg 6: "Take that, android..."
--Cool. Nice tension. And there are footnotes!

pg 7: "The older man "
twice in 2 paragraphs. This jumps out to me.

pg 9: "you look like Tom Sellek.”
--lol (also, Selleck)

pg 12: blocking during the fight is a bit confusing could be cleanup up.

Pg 12: love the last line.

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Hey I-Dragon, thank you so much for reading. I don't mind grammar at this point - the more the merrier, but no great need, unless something really sticks out.

On 07/06/2017 at 11:13 PM, industrialistDragon said:

Again with the TMs

Yeah, I just hadn't fixed this from the last time and laughed right in. I have searched-and-replaced the TMs with Rs. Thanks for the reminder.

On 07/06/2017 at 11:13 PM, industrialistDragon said:

coyotes are small opportunistic predators much more likely to hunt small pets and sick or young livestock than humans

I'll tell the to my sister-in-law, who, in this very location, got chased up a tree and stranded for 2 hours by a pack of coyotes :o/

On 07/06/2017 at 11:13 PM, industrialistDragon said:

Ahaa. robots.  Moth is pretty sheltered, isn't she? XD - Yup!!  For the record, i don't have that much of a problem calling wolf-bots androids. *shrug* - It's addressed in the next chapter, for what it's worth.

On 07/06/2017 at 11:13 PM, industrialistDragon said:

keep reading Sno-tex as Snot-ex

Yeah, fixed - thanks.

On 07/06/2017 at 11:13 PM, industrialistDragon said:

footnotes for me are distracting in fiction, halt the tension and really break up the flow of the narration

Yeah, as an experiment, it's interesting to note the two camps - one which skips over them till they get to the bottom of the page, and the other which reads them 'properly'. I'm on the fence. I'll think about it.

On 07/06/2017 at 11:13 PM, industrialistDragon said:

You footnoted the dutch museum but not the parisian one. Both are equally foreign-sounding to english speakers.

My bad - that's my I-speak-French bias coming out.

On 07/06/2017 at 11:13 PM, industrialistDragon said:

wait, if she had the gun, why didn't she use it on the wolf-bots?

Yeah - one way or another, the gun's an error. I'm going to re-write the wolf-bot section, so I'll fix it then.

On 07/06/2017 at 11:13 PM, industrialistDragon said:

curse that cursed Q for making her cursing sneak and whatnot

:lol:

On 07/06/2017 at 11:13 PM, industrialistDragon said:

Overall an interesting start to a new adventure and it seems quirk has most of his mojo back!

Excellent! Thanks so much for reading; comments greatly appreciated.

<R>

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Hey @Mandamon, thanks for reading.

13 hours ago, Mandamon said:

This has a lot of the fun of the early Q&M submissions. --Yay!   They play off each other well. also agree the coyote attack was a little sudden, --Yes, will fix.  and I would have loved more actual flirting between G and Q. --Hmm, yes, that would be entirely appropriate. I feel that Q's protest is rather lame.

14 hours ago, Mandamon said:

parsed it as SNOT-ex

Yup - fixed now, ta.

14 hours ago, Mandamon said:

pg 7: "The older man "
twice in 2 paragraphs. This jumps out to me.

Righto - fixed.

14 hours ago, Mandamon said:

also, Selleck

thanks!

So pleased that a fair few of the punchlines are landing for you here. Thanks so much for reading, some good fixes there. Onwards and upwards!

I'm going to write on a bit before submitting any more, but I'm very grateful to all who commented.

Also, @kais, I must apologise for not commenting. I'm at the Download festival this weekend, so my comments might be a bit tardy. Sorry!!

:) 

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4 hours ago, Robinski said:

I'll tell the to my sister-in-law, who, in this very location, got chased up a tree and stranded for 2 hours by a pack of coyotes

O.O For serious?! Geez, they must grow their coyotes meaner up in Canadia! I went and wiki'd coyote attacks before I mentioned it, and wiki has some absurdly low number like 40 attacks over like 15 years. My personal experiences with coyotes have involved losing a couple pet cats to them -- probably. The cats just disappeared, and all the neighbors just nodded sympathetically and went "Well, we have coyotes in the area" and conspicuously resumed walking their medium/large dogs. 

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So, for what it's worth, I've just completed one of the WE writing prompts that I've flagged to do on in Season 12, the one where you highlight promises to the reader in the first 10% of the story (~30 pages), then highlight your chapters / scenes going forward as they relate to those promises. It came out looking like this, and I felt like sharing it.

 

Screen Shot 2017-06-21 at 19.01.40.png

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7 hours ago, Mandamon said:

We get to hold you to this, right?

Lol - yes!

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