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Distortion Critique 1


So I put out scene one from Distortion for a writer's critique. Here was the result:

It's amazing how awesome this feedback was. You can live with your stuff long enough that you become blind to it. I have a lot of work to do (first novel) but I've studied the craft long enough to understand everything everyone is saying. Besides all the specific points, the two themes I noticed were a lack of emotional/physical reaction (nothing to keep you in Ash's head) and the Great Sin (show don't tell). I also changed tense and didn't notice (no that was not on purpose). There were many other great points, and I have a lot of work to do. Thanks again to http://www.scribophile.com/ for making a community for writers.


Opening Comments

Great start! I'm excited to see how this develops!

Plot

Based on the first chapter alone, of course, I am wondering if there is a plot?  Will this be a series of dreams or is there a reality Ash must also deal with.  Are their people in his life that he's trying to reconnect with? If the story is a series of dreams or memories, I wondered what he is trying to get to.  What is there to be resolved? 

Pacing

I did appreciate that many times the pacing felt like a dream, a bit disjointed and such. But I'm not sure if you intended the format or not.  The constant breaks, for me, felt choppy, and I had a hard time following the action and I found my self pausing after every break, which slowed the pace and confused the action.  

Description

I realize by the end that is all a memory or a dream, but I did still desire a bit more description.  Have you ever had those types of dreams that you swore were real? They can be more than images.  Or even memories have specific feelings and emotions behind it.  Some people even capture memories with certain hues of color.  Developing more palatable descriptions may take us deeper into character interactions and/or plot points.
 Did it take place in the day or in the night? Or both?  Did the locations switch (as some dreams do) or is it the same constant location? Can he tell what is a dream or not?  These are just some question I had. 

Point Of View

I wondered as I read, since PTSD is such a personal and individual experience, just for fun, how would this story work in first person?  Personally for me, I felt far away from him when I wanted to be directly in his head.  I wanted to feel what he was feeling and capture it all from his eyes only.  So maybe, just for fun, you could try rewriting a few lines in first person just to see how it feels.  Worse case scenario is you get a another perspective or deeper development of the character.

Characters

Ash seemed a bit distant to me.  I could understand his facts and actions, but it was hard for me to get into him. What I mean is, it was hard for me to earnestly care for him, though I really wanted to.  Playing with first person pov, may help discover ways to include "him" more...if that makes sense.  If you want to stick to third person, then it may help to include more of his thoughts into story.  Does he know it's a memory/dream? Has this happened before or is it the first time? How does he feel? Is the question i kept asking.

Closing Comments

This work has great potential to become something both entertaining and enlightening.  I'm excited to read more!

By Darrell Wolfe

Storyteller | Creative | INFJ | Intellection | Ideation | Input | Learner | Achiever | Multipotentialite

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    Darrell's Reading List


    Here are some books I've been reading lately:
    • Hacker: The Outlaw Chronicles (here) by Ted Dekker (Author). The story of a young Hacker girl, who went on a wild adventure into the supernatural realm beyond trying to save her mom, but saved her self too in the process.
    • Saint: A Paradise Novel (here) by Ted Dekker (Author). He's an assassin, or is he? He finds a secret to his past that unlocks supernatural abilities, at a cost.
    • For a full list of all my book suggestions, see my Amazon Store.

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