Robinski

160210 - Robinski - The NEU Oblivion - 5661 words [L,V,S]

23 posts in this topic

Firstly, thank you for your patience (I hope!) with this late short story submission. Pressure of work, etc. (mumble). And it's a bit over 5K, sorry about that too - I figured it was within limits of variation.

If you have time to read it, I'm hoping for the usual comments, basically anything you find to say about is fine by me.

Thanks for reading.

 

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First off, I enjoyed this a lot. I'm glad you snuck it in yet this week.  :)

 

I kind of wonder if the first scene could be cut entirely? Paul's point of view is much more interesting, and the way you introduce us to him would have more impact than the current opening scene, I think. Don't get me wrong, your description of the handoff with the girl was as chilling as it was compelling, but Paul's story is even more so (for me, anyway). Actually, the second non-Paul POV could probably be cut without losing much, too. Is there another way to insert the pertinent backstory about the NEU via Paul's POV?

 

I did get a bit lost at the end of the first bit of dialog between Marie and Paul, before the action kicks in. Then I got really lost, but the second read-through was much better for me. I think you could clarify some when it's the NEU feeding him info, or expand a little up front on how that works, exactly. Right away you hint that the NEU's installation wasn't his choice... Is he also somehow compelled to serve as a police officer? In that case, is he technically still military?

 

I got lost in the big action scene during the first read-through; again, the second read-through went a lot better. Much of the disorientation I felt while reading this was good, I think, and lends itself well to the subject matter. Throughout the entire piece, Paul simply appears to react rather than act. There's not a lot of independent thought or emotion in him, even when he's joking with his colleagues, which I think works great overall.

 

The girl he killed in the bedroom... Did she have a gun, or not? The NEU was silent here, so yet again protocol wasn't followed.

 

Paul's odd, one-sided relationship with Marie... The only quibble I have with this is Paul seems so detached, that I have a hard time understanding how Marie could form a real attachment with him outside of the physical. 

 

 

 

I’ve seen this in Africa, in reverse, planes swallowing coffins in Algerian heat.

 

Nice touch, here.

 

I want to know why they had to switch off the NEU. I get the impression that Paul is still being controlled by the military in some fashion, so wouldn't they (or couldn't they) just feed him false information to throw he and Marie off the trail? It seems odd to me that they'd simply switch him off, because it waves a ginormous red flag that they're involved in whatever it going on with the organ harvests. But if the military is able to feed Paul false information through the NEU, it would make for a killer unreliable narrator.

 
So, yeah, pretty darn awesome. I want to read more in this universe!
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Okay this is really engaging, good prose, gripping story, but I am missing information that I need to be satisfied.

 

Why does this man, who is damaged and computer reliant, have a high-stakes job in the police force, especially in France, a notably welfare-happy country?

 

Who are the people discussing and then shutting off his NEU?  that jump is confusing.

 

Why does his memory break down entirely?  Up to then, the rule was that he forgets when he sleeps, but seems to remember the entire period of waking.  If that's not how it works, that needs to be made clear.

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Great comments guys, thank you so much for reading. I haven't submitted for a few weeks, and I'm right back to getting that buzz of trepidation as I open up the thread!!

 

Anyway, I'll come back to everyone in more depth tomorrow to answer those questions, but your observations all make perfect sense. I feel I can see those holes as you describe them and the flow of thoughts forming as to how I will plug those gaps and tie those loose ends.

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- I love first paragraph, and especially the simplicity of the names . . . Garbage-Man and Short-Man. It makes me very interested to know who these two are connected and what's going on.

 

- POV switch is a bit jarring, but still pretty interesting given what you've revealed about the their organ-harvesting intentions.

 

- A little confused about the blocking. I thought the main character was sitting in a car. Then it seems he's not, and somewhere where Marie could pace towards him?

 

- I really like the NEU, and the various data you chose to show. I also like that it's politely whispering to the protagonist.

 

- I liked that you reintroduce Marie after their intense night together, hitting home the character's loss of memory.

 

- The second switch back to third person seems a little less effective, since it's basically an info-dump. 

 

- I really like the action in the final section. I'd definitely read a whole novel like this! 

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The first paragraph really reminded me of a Tom Clancy interlude where you see the forces working behind the scenes that will eventually come together to challenge the main character which I liked.  I also liked the descriptions of random objects that helped me picture the setting like spotting an Aerobus, etc.  My main criticism is that I have no idea what the NEU is to the world... everyone in the precinct knows Paul has a computer in his head and they act like its no big deal so is this technology widespread?  

 

 

‘Six-three, ninety kilos plus minus three percent, match Henri Vadim eighty-four percent.’

 
‘rust,’ she’s half depressing the door handle. ‘Ninety, Paul. Ninety.’

 

Does this mean Marie also has a NEU of some sort that she knows Paul is wrong on his match percentage?

 

 

‘Henri Vadim! Stop and lie face down. You are under arrest.’

 
He spins, eyes darting around, pulse elevating. In the cacophony of unfiltered 
 
sounds, some algorithm picks out Marie pacing towards me.
 
‘What the storm was that? There’s a storming protocol!’ She moves past me, weapon 
 
drawn, ‘cuffs in hand. ‘Henri Vadim, you are under arrest on suspicion of the murder of 
 
Robert Toulon.’

I don't understand how Paul didn't follow protocol...  Meaning don't engage the criminal without me?  Maybe a simple your a robot not a superhero follow the protocol and wait for me line would clear that up.

 

 

‘I'm sorry. I got a ninety-three’

 
Marie shoots me a frustrated look and snaps, ‘Tell me first.’

 

Paul originally says 80%, Marie corrects him and says 90%... then he admits he got a 93%.  Confused about that... also... tell him what first?

 

For me I started enjoying the story when you saw that Marie and Paul are in fact lovers and she talks about how she always remembers and hopes she can love him enough that he can remember.  I like the difficulty of their relationship and the angst/tension that comes from it.  

 

Otherwise the Universal Soldier type thing going on is cool but sterile as far as the police work which is analyze, aim, shoot.  I would like to see him kind of take in information on a human level that creates an internal man v. machine conflict.  Maybe something about her appearance betrays that she has children and his human emotions say he probably shouldn't kill her but the NEU is like nope threat level too high pull the trigger.

 

I did find the action and story cool but the whole time I was wondering how the homicide police in France get this guy on their force.  I would expect him to be working white collar or organized crime with his analyzation skills.  

 

Where does this guy fit into this world? Is the NEU an advanced version of some biotech being used in the world?  Everyone in the precinct knows about the NEU so it can't be some top secret government thing... and why would they let some amateur cops run around using their tech?  The military guy says they don't need to keep the NEU in his head but they leave it for research... yet its also possible Paul can ruin their plans so if your an illegal group why make this guy a cop?  Why not your enforcer where you can control him a bit more?  He is ex-military and has no memory prior to the NEU making him very valuable to a criminal organization.  

 

Very interested to see how this turns out great submission.

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I kind of wonder if the first scene could be cut entirely? - Almost certainly, this was a basic mistake, not starting with the main character in a short story, good point. I think I wanted to stick with Paul once I got onto him, but I'll try Scene One somewhere different.

 

Actually, the second non-Paul POV could probably be cut without losing much, too. Is there another way to insert the pertinent backstory about the NEU via Paul's POV? - Hmm, it's the sciency stuff that I can't hear coming out of another person's mouth. I'll think on that. Take you point though.

 

I did get a bit lost at the end of the first bit of dialog between Marie and Paul, before the action kicks in. Then I got really lost, but the second read-through was much better for me. I think you could clarify some when it's the NEU feeding him info, or expand a little up front on how that works, exactly. - Yep, improve clarity, I think I can do that. I feel maybe it's more where the scenes shift.

 

Right away you hint that the NEU's installation wasn't his choice... Is he also somehow compelled to serve as a police officer? In that case, is he technically still military? - Good point this. Not compelled, more like placed, but it does beg the question 'Who put him there?'

 

I got lost in the big action scene during the first read-through; again, the second read-through went a lot better. Much of the disorientation I felt while reading this was good, I think, and lends itself well to the subject matter. - That may come from me cutting too much of the blocking. Will consider.

 

Throughout the entire piece, Paul simply appears to react rather than act. There's not a lot of independent thought or emotion in him, even when he's joking with his colleagues, which I think works great overall. - Very much because of his condition.

 

The girl he killed in the bedroom... Did she have a gun, or not? The NEU was silent here, so yet again protocol wasn't followed. - The thump on the floor was supposed to indicate a gun hitting the ground. I will clarify that.

 

Paul's odd, one-sided relationship with Marie... The only quibble I have with this is Paul seems so detached, that I have a hard time understanding how Marie could form a real attachment with him outside of the physical. - Agree, I could deal with that better from her side. It's more about her character than his.

 

I want to know why they had to switch off the NEU. - Yeah, I agree that needs clarity, and it's unclear what TrF are using the bodies for. I was trying hard to get to 5,000 words as an exercise in brevity, but that becomes an artificial limit. I think the story deserves a few more to clarify this. I cut it hard from 7,500 in first draft, and clarity has suffered in places.

 

But if the military is able to feed Paul false information through the NEU, it would make for a killer unreliable narrator. - Hmm, I'm putting this together with your last statement...(scribble, scribble)

 

I'm delighted that the story, in general, worked for you and seemed to be entertaining! I had never considered writing more, but your notes are very encouraging. I had never thought of it as a universe, the descriptions and locations are straight out of contemporary Paris. Don't know if you've ever been, I have a few times, never staying in the same arrondissement. La Defense is a very strange place (I think).

 

Thank you so much for your comments!

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Why does this man, who is damaged and computer reliant, have a high-stakes job in the police force, especially in France, a notably welfare-happy country? - Good question, which Marci tagged also. I will address that but, in short, he's there as part of a trial of the NEU technology. I cut a scene between Danton and Moreau (she was the pov that I cut) which explained this, oops!

 

Who are the people discussing and then shutting off his NEU?  that jump is confusing. - Yep, Marci also challenged me to remove this and get the info into Paul's pov somehow. Tricky, but now I'm determined to try.

 

Why does his memory break down entirely?  Up to then, the rule was that he forgets when he sleeps, but seems to remember the entire period of waking.  If that's not how it works, that needs to be made clear. - Yes, clarity again. It's supposed to be a shock thing, as alluded to by the TrF officer in the other pov, but that's not really working. If the NEU is just a monitor, why does switching it off induce those reactions in Paul? I need to work on that aspect.

 

Great comments, thank you Eisenheim, but greatly encouraged that you were engaged and gripped!!

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- I love first paragraph, and especially the simplicity of the names . . . Garbage-Man and Short-Man. It makes me very interested to know who these two are connected and what's going on.

- POV switch is a bit jarring, but still pretty interesting given what you've revealed about the their organ-harvesting intentions.

 

Excellent that the first para. engaged you, and interesting that the switch jarred. There is something off here, as Marci had issues with the first para. being there. Something needs adjustment there.

 

- A little confused about the blocking. I thought the main character was sitting in a car. Then it seems he's not, and somewhere where Marie could pace towards him? - Yeah, he's in the car, then gets out to identify the perp, which he's not supposed to do. My swingeing cuts have muddied that, I think.

 

- The second switch back to third person seems a little less effective, since it's basically an info-dump. - Agreed, and you are third out of three to raise this. It

 

Wow, I'm pretty bowled over that there are thoughts of more. I could not have hoped for a better reaction! I'm going to have to give that some serious thought now!

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My main criticism is that I have no idea what the NEU is to the world... everyone in the precinct knows Paul has a computer in his head - Good point, and coming through in others' comments. I need to clarify. To answer this and others, Paul, or rather then NEU, is on trial with the PD, but developed by TrF, funded by the military. The passersby don't know a NEU from Adam, they just know he's a cop.

 

Does this mean Marie also has a NEU of some sort that she knows Paul is wrong on his match percentage? - This comes back to the protocol. I don't want to info dump the percentages in the story, so I'll just tidy up the dialogue, which should be capable of making this clear. He needs a 90% identification to engage. He gets 80% from the visual, but has to get out to smell the cologne to get to 93%. I can clear this up.

 

I would like to see him kind of take in information on a human level that creates an internal man v. machine conflict. - Good point, the tension is very much between Marie and Paul, rather than in Paul himself, but there's probably room for something like you describe. I'm thinking now of a couple of lines of self-doubt, which will allow me to expound a little on the NEU without dumping.

 

Where does this guy fit into this world? - Agree, this is a thread in most of the comments. I can clarify, as per my note above.

 

Very interested to see how this turns out great submission.

 

On your last comment, it's intended as a short, so that's the end, although there seems to be a fair degree of interest in reading more.

 

As a direct response to this very encouraging reaction, I'm starting to wonder about writing a 'sequel' short from Marie's pov.

 

Really appreciate your comments, thanks F-fox.

Edited by Robinski
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Yay!  New Robinski stuff!

Overall I liked it.  The technical writing was good as always.  I liked the dysfunctional relationship between Marie and Paul.  However I spent most of the beginning and the end confused.

Looks like I have pretty much the same comments as everyone else, below.  My major issues were:

 

1) I don't know what the NEU is / where it comes from / how unique it is.

2) I have no idea why Paul would be in the police force since his co-workers don't really know about the NEU either.

3) I don't have a good connection between the NEU handlers and the organ trafficking.  I feel like they're connected, though.

4) I don't get a good resolution from the ending (partially because of blocking).

 

 

Notes:

-------------------

pg 2: "Garbage-man" has already been identified to me as the pony-tailed man.

 

pg 2: "vessel for five million dollars-worth of organs."

--that's gruesome...

 

pg 3: "The kernel whispers, reminding me I'm a policeman."

--interesting

 

pg 4: "she’s half depressing the door handle. ‘Ninety, Paul. Ninety.’"

--don't' get what this is reffering to.  Percent match, I assume?

 

pg 8: "No point in acquiring things that will become alien by tomorrow."

I still don't fully get this.  Is he forgetting what happened the day before?  He remembers the overall sequence of things, though.  If not, and it's just the NEU whispering to him, then that's not clear.

Edit: should have read further.  This section explains it.

 

pg 12: so I gather from this that Paul is unique, and the other policemen do not use an NEU.  Makes me wonder why just Paul and where the NEU came from.

 

pg 16: "end of the pier"

--They're in an airport, right?  Is this a British usage I'm missing?

 

pg 16: got a little lost in the blocking, here and through the chase on the next few pages.

 

pg 17: "hospital smock, drugged."

--So this is the same time as the opening paragraphs...

 

pg 18: "My eye does to the coffins"

--goes?

 

pg 18: "B-line"

--beeline?

 

Blocking again in the action at the end.  They're in a graveyard, but then in a building?  Not sure.

 

The change from dated entries to a long narrative sort of threw me off.  I was expecting another one for the rest of the story.

 

I never really got a sense of what the NEU was, why Paul had one, who was controlling him, and why he's working for the police.  Then it's shut off, I assume because the same people who are running the organ trafficking are running his NEU?  Why then is he anywhere near the police?  I feel like there either needs to be more to the story to give the final explanation, or that this is leading into a second story/part.
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First off, i really enjoyed the story. and the amount of information for me worked although i was interested enough that i wanted to know more, especially the relationship between TrF and the organ stealer.

 

I really like the style and the use of italics for the NEU, i thought it was really cool.

 

I did get lost/confused  a few times during the action sequence, but I think a simple revision with a few more words would clear it up.

 

page 16. The lift doors are open, butting into the overturned .

This confused me a little. I think if you add the word "stuck" i would have understood it better

 

Page 19 I draw a bead on the first, but my Glock is silenb...

I didn't realize till later in the story his glock was linked to the NEU, so this confused me.

 

Page 20. Fire-fighting

Makes me think there fighting a fire not shooting. Funny enough fire-fight works for shooting just fine.

 

Page 20  ...the car door popping.

 What car door. I thought it was a helicopter

 

Danton. When the action starts to pick up you only call Marie "Danton",when in the first three quarters you use her first name. This utterly confused me because i had no idea who this Danton was ( i had an inkling it was Marie but i felt like i missed something) and I had to back track and find out it was Maries last name.

 

Traffic Sign for armour. I don't think that would work at all, but now that I think of it if you were trying to show metal deterioration then it is a good job.

 

Bullet spinning someone. This is cool, but i do not think Bullets actual transmit enough momentum to do that. Then again i have never been shot so i can be wrong.

 

All and all a great read.

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Now that all the serious comments are in the NEU is totally a sentient hemalurgic spike.

 

"Would you like to shoot some bad guys today?"

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Now that all the serious comments are in the NEU is totally a sentient hemalurgic spike.

 

"Would you like to shoot some bad guys today?"

 

ROFL

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I never really got a sense of what the NEU was, why Paul had one, who was controlling him, and why he's working for the police. - The system is being trialed. I can imply that somewhere near the beginning. I had hints (I thought), but not clear enough. 

 

Then it's shut off, I assume because the same people who are running the organ trafficking are running his NEU? - Yes, this sort of morphed during the edit, so no entirely surprising it's unclear.

 

Why then is he anywhere near the police? - I imagine it as a reaction to the growing threat of insurgency. Not that it says that anywhere! I can drop a reference of some sort.  

 

I feel like there either needs to be more to the story to give the final explanation, or that this is leading into a second story/part. - I prefer the idea of explanation, I think. I'm not keen on this becoming another novel, as I am looking to submit some stuff, which I never really done before.

 

Most excellent comments, than you Mandamon. I really feel that the changes coming through will lift the story up, and I'm totally enthused about getting back to it (after the modest gap) - so positive has the reaction been.

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I did get lost/confused  a few times during the action sequence, but I think a simple revision with a few more words would clear it up. - I feel that too, good to hear.

 

page 16. The lift doors are open, butting into the overturned .

This confused me a little. I think if you add the word "stuck" i would have understood it better - Agreed again - I felt that something was missing. Good suggestion.

 

Page 19 I draw a bead on the first, but my Glock is silenb...

I didn't realize till later in the story his glock was linked to the NEU, so this confused me. - I tried to convey through his routine of establishing the satellite com link.

 

Page 20  ...the car door popping.  What car door. I thought it was a helicopter - He crouches down behind a car at one point, but it's not blocked at all well, if at all.

 

Traffic Sign for armour. I don't think that would work at all, but now that I think of it if you were trying to show metal deterioration then it is a good job. - I agree, not least because of seeing pictures of road signs shot. That's why I went to a double sign (back-to-back), which I really awkward. Maybe he knows it won't work if really put to the test, but I would need to hang a lantern on that. I will tweak.

 

Bullet spinning someone. This is cool, but i do not think Bullets actual transmit enough momentum to do that. Then again i have never been shot so i can be wrong. - Yeah, it's artistic license,  probably, although happens in the movies all the time!! Maybe if it's a .357 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world... (back when Dirty Harry was a lad).

 

Great comments, Kam, thank you - and great to hear from you.

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Catching up because I'm a little behind, and what a fine story to start with!

 

P4 - "Six three, ninety kilos plus minus three percent." - Why is the height imperial but the weight metric?

P6 - "I feel the van decelerating from forty-two m.p.h. at two point eight metres per second." - Here too, miles vs. metres. Normally you might get away with something like this because some countries are different and some people do think in different measures (Here in Canada I measure my height, weight, and building materials in imperial, but my speed and distance in metric), but this is data fed from a device which I'd assume uses only one standard.

P7 - "Bang, bang. Something heavy hits the floor." - I have no idea what hit the floor. The girl was in the bed so it wouldn't be her, right? If it was the POV character I assume there'd be pain. Was it someone behind him?

P16 - "My eye does goes to the coffins"

P17 - "Can't take a B-line beeline to the fence"

P19 - "Hot metal pain bights bites my left arm" - Bight! An intruder from W&S! :)

 

I'm confused about the store the pony-tailed man goes to. There's no mention about what kind of store it is, but it's weird that they sell mops and cleaning products at an airport. Or was this meant to be storage rather than storefront? I liked the rest of this scene though, the two men obviously up to no good, and the girl in the bag at the end. ADDENDUM: After finishing the story, as much as this was a decent scene, I don't think it fits.

 

The first scene helps set the scene, and helps us understand what comes later, but I don't know that it's necessary. Later on they jump into the mission at the airport without telling us what they're doing, and we know what they're doing because we've seen in it that first scene, but if they just clarified who they were going to that airport for and why, the first scene could be omitted and you'd save a point of view.

 

The other odd scene with the two men talking about the NEU being implanted could also be omitted. Punch up the few instances early where his memory is affected and make it clear that it's the NEU, and the reader should be good. Likewise, we already know that it's military so we don't need that information. the only other piece of important information is that the NEU can be shut off, but that can be telegraphed in-story as well without resorting to an extraneous POV.

 

Speaking of shutting it off, the last scene where he's losing his memories and struggling to recall why he's here and what he was doing before was absolutely brilliantly written. I loved every word of it but it brings up a technical question: Is the fact that the NEU is there what stops the memories from forming, or that the NEU is active? ie. Does shutting off the NEU mean he should be able to form memories?

 

The ending: I find it odd. I assume it's there to tell us that he survived the encounter, but the words "Marie is still here" implies that he has some memory of her from before this day? Again, is this a function of hie NEU being switched off, and if so, why was his memory failing so badly before during the gunfight when it was off. This feels like a contradiction to me.

 

Another piece that stood out was the opening line of a lot of the scenes. I like the "light switched on" bit, but "same every morning" implies that he remembers every morning, which I feel he shouldn't. Unless you make it clear that this is information that is fed to him rather than information he simply knows and remembers.

 

Overall, I liked the premise of the man with no ability to make new memories, but with an ability to know more about what's going on around him. I liked the way the NEU fed him information, and what he did with it, and I think you conveyed well what was data and what was instinct/training.

I think the writing is some of the best I've seen from you and was engaging throughout, though there were a lot of times when I had to reread bits because I wasn't sure what was going on, but I think that's more of a language pass thing once you have the nuts and bolts of the plot and sequence ironed out.

What I found lacking was an understanding of what they were doing from a detective point of view, and I don't know if some of that was because Paul himself didn't have the information (because of his lack of memories and his only knowing what the NEU tells him). If that's the case, then it's a bit of a problem because without knowing why Paul is doing what he's doing it's hard to get invested in his story. I feel A LOT of empathy for him, so I think the characterization is spot on, but I need more than that. I think it's a matter of adding a few more of the right details to make this a winner.

Lines like the following:

P5 - "That’s when the NEU starts to whisper reminding me where to go and why"

I think that's a great line, but then we cut to a scene where they're breaking down a door and shots are fired and the whole thing is very, very interesting, but I never know why that scene is relevant. That's what I'm missing.

 

The only gripe I have with the writing is that there are a lot of sentence fragments strung together with commas which I sometimes found hard to follow. I think a lot of these should be edited to be separate sentences.

ie:

 P9: "Same every morning, I can’t remember what drowsy feels like, then again, I can’t remember much."

 P23: "I snatch up a pad on the ground near me, screen cracked, but it’s all the tech I have, pocket it and lurch forward."

 

So yeah, with a bit more of a notion of why things are happening, and specifically why Paul is doing things, this would be a fine story. If you get a rewrite done I'd be happy to take another look at it.

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Here in Canada I measure my height, weight, and building materials in imperial, but my speed and distance in metric, but this is data fed from a device which I'd assume uses only one standard. - Good point. I blame my wife and daughter, both of whom are Canucks. Seriously though, I will edit that, you're quite right.

P7 - "Bang, bang. Something heavy hits the floor." - I have no idea what hit the floor. The girl was in the bed so it wouldn't be her, right? If it was the POV character I assume there'd be pain. - Yeah, I fumbled this one, you're like the 8th person to mention it. I will fix.

 

P19 - "Hot metal pain bights bites my left arm" - Bight! An intruder from W&S! :) - Lol, I hate this word! What is wrong with me?

 

ADDENDUM: After finishing the story, as much as this was a decent scene, I don't think it fits. - Another point that others have raised. I'll think of something. I'm loath to lose it, and haven't twigged a neat way to include it, but the lack of briefing information at key points (as you've noted) is part of the same issue. I can fix this.

 

Is the fact that the NEU is there what stops the memories from forming, or that the NEU is active? i.e. Does shutting off the NEU mean he should be able to form memories? - Good point, well made. I honestly haven't considered that point, but will now!

 

The ending: I find it odd. I assume it's there to tell us that he survived the encounter, but the words "Marie is still here" implies that he has some memory of her from before this day? Again, is this a function of his NEU being switched off, and if so, why was his memory failing so badly before during the gunfight when it was off. This feels like a contradiction to me. - Fair comment. The scientist mentions the potential for shock, but it's not well fleshed-out / foreshadowed. I can clarify.

 

I like the "light switched on" bit, but "same every morning" implies that he remembers every morning, which I feel he shouldn't. Unless you make it clear that this is information that is fed to him rather than information he simply knows and remembers. - Good point. It's not really doing anything other than assisting to form the pattern with repetition. I think I can drop it without detriment to the effect.

 

What I found lacking was an understanding of what they were doing from a detective point of view - Guilty as charged. I mentioned briefing earlier. I can fix this. The original version had a Marie POV in addition to everything else! That is where some of the briefing information was, but I just cut it, thinking I could get away with it. Not so. I will fix.

 

The only gripe I have with the writing is that there are a lot of sentence fragments strung together with commas which I sometimes found hard to follow. I think a lot of these should be edited to be separate sentences. - Yup, that's part of my M.O., but it often attracts flack. I've always thought it creates urgency and tension, but I would say maybe 50% of the time (per project) someone calls me on it. I can fix it.

 

If you get a rewrite done I'd be happy to take another look at it. - I'm super enthused by all the really great comments I've received on this story. There's a lot of positive criticism, which is great, but my enthusiasm comes from several points (i) the comments are consistently about the same few things; (ii) I can fix most of the things easily; (iii) I am excited by the challenge of fixing the hard things.

 

I really appreciate your comments Shrike, they are sooo encouraging and helpful, as the others have been. The support for this story has been excellent, I am buzzing over it now.

 

My plan, of which this is Step 1, is to complete a number of shorts that I have had part finished or part started, and get them submitted. Submitting is something I have almost never done, but this group has given me so much momentum over recent years (as has WE) that I want to do that now.

 

So, I will submit this story again, but I think I'll give myself a bit of distance by trying to finish a draft of another project before coming back to this one.

 

Thank you again, eh!

Edited by Robinski
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On 12/02/2016 at 4:04 PM, Mandamon said:
pg 16: "end of the pier"
 
--They're in an airport, right?  Is this a British usage I'm missing?

Heh, so here I am, feeling like I have really got to grips with Hold the Bridge (you mad fool!!), going back to The NEU Oblivion to do an edit in the hope of submitting to slush piles of the Western world.

To that end, Mandamon, what would you call... Arrggh, I think I just hit on the answer to this, but I'll ask it anyway. What word would you use instead of pier for the different sections of an airport boarding area extending from the main terminal? Concourse? Gate?

 

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4 hours ago, Robinski said:

What word would you use instead of pier for the different sections of an airport boarding area extending from the main terminal? Concourse? Gate?

I'd call it a 'jet bridge'.

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Yes, I think Jet bridge or Gate would work.

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Cool beans. Ta very much.

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On 12/02/2016 at 10:50 PM, Kammererite said:

Traffic Sign for armour. I don't think that would work at all, but now that I think of it if you were trying to show metal deterioration then it is a good job.

Hey, Kammererite, I guess here you meant 'mental deterioration'? If so, then I'm afraid I don't deserve that credit :)  However, now that you mention it, it's not a bad idea.

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