Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Open topics on the Contest itself, to include results-watch threads and other items of note.
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Dame » Mon Mar 19, 2012 10:57 am

Suddenly puts a word between the reader and the sudden action. It is often more sudden to just say what happens than to suddenly use suddenly.
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Corbin Maxwell » Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:48 am

Dustin Adams wrote:@Patrick.
Awesome.

@Martin.
That was ridiculously obscure. I got it tho.

@Corbin.
I prefer your 2nd example. Less words, and I'm not a fan of the," he said, then did something else - type of style.

As for one or two ! even if in dialog, I would think that's character and story dependent. Use em if you need em.

I read a finalist story that had 70 exclamation points in it. (I just counted)
Wait... that wasn't a just finalist... that was a winner. wotf009



When you use that many exclamation points, it takes away their effect. Use just one or two and they become a lot more powerful.

As for that story being a winner, well maybe it was a really good story with a lot of exclamation points.

There's a lot of rules written down in books, and of course it's good to learn them and apply them and perhaps break a few. But I'm sure that when our stories are judged, they are judged mostly by having a good plot with believeable characters and decent writing. I don't think the judges are knocking off points for violating the rule book.

I can quote a bunch of rules that I've learned through writing books, but just knowing them doesn't make me a good writer. I have to be able to apply the rules, and sometimes break them.
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:02 pm

Dustin Adams wrote:@Martin.
That was ridiculously obscure. I got it tho.


I think that means we're both sad, broken children of a trash culture era...
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Isto » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:17 pm

[quote="Corbin Maxwell"][quote="Martin L. Shoemaker"][quote="Patrick S. McGinnity"]Consider:

"Monster," shouted Gus. And he yanked her arm, dragging her down the street.

Or:

"Monster!" Gus grabbed her arm and yanked her down the street.

[end-quote]

Note how much more immediate the second one is. Faster. If I'm in danger, I'd want the second Gus saving me.
My opinion about he said, she said... said is a wasted opportunity. Show SOMETHING.
Note: "Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Corbin Maxwell » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:22 pm

Isto wrote:[quote="Corbin Maxwell]

"Monster," shouted Gus. And he yanked her arm, dragging her down the street.

Or:

"Monster!" Gus grabbed her arm and yanked her down the street.

[end-quote]

Note how much more immediate the second one is. Faster. If I'm in danger, I'd want the second Gus saving me.
My opinion about he said, she said... said is a wasted opportunity. Show SOMETHING.
Note: "Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."[/quote][/quote][/quote]



First example is my rough draft; the second one is my rewrite.
For there is death in the sound of it, and a glamorous fatality, like silver pennons downrushing at sunset, or a dying fall of horns along the road to Ronceveaux.

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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Corbin Maxwell » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:25 pm

Isto wrote:
Corbin Maxwell wrote:
"Monster," shouted Gus. And he yanked her arm, dragging her down the street.

Or:

"Monster!" Gus grabbed her arm and yanked her down the street.

[end-quote]

Note how much more immediate the second one is. Faster. If I'm in danger, I'd want the second Gus saving me.
My opinion about he said, she said... said is a wasted opportunity. Show SOMETHING.
Note: "Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."
[/quote]


But how about this:


"Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."
"You're not so quick to refuse," she said, "when it's my sister."


Not only using he said/she said to show who is talking, but also as a little bit of a dramitic pause.
For there is death in the sound of it, and a glamorous fatality, like silver pennons downrushing at sunset, or a dying fall of horns along the road to Ronceveaux.

The only easy day was yesterday.




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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Isto » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:47 pm

Corbin Maxwell wrote:
Isto wrote:
Corbin Maxwell wrote:
"Monster," shouted Gus. And he yanked her arm, dragging her down the street.

Or:

"Monster!" Gus grabbed her arm and yanked her down the street.

[end-quote]

Note how much more immediate the second one is. Faster. If I'm in danger, I'd want the second Gus saving me.
My opinion about he said, she said... said is a wasted opportunity. Show SOMETHING.
Note: "Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."



But how about this:


"Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."
"You're not so quick to refuse," she said, "when it's my sister."


Not only using he said/she said to show who is talking, but also as a little bit of a dramitic pause.[/quote]


Agreed. It works there. A long string of any one thing will become tedious and call attention to itself. The above exchange works nicely to accent the situation and give personality to the characters. Both feisty. You just know they are destined for each other. I also like the alternating dialogue position. This reads very smoothly.
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby dantzel » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:53 pm

But how about this:


"Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."
"You're not so quick to refuse," she said, "when it's my sister."


Not only using he said/she said to show who is talking, but also as a little bit of a dramitic pause.



I am closer to this camp, although honestly, I try to write what is necessary. Sometimes he said/she said needs to be there. Sometimes you need the action, and occasionally you need an adverb.

Completely avoiding he said/she said is just as noticeable as using them obsessively.
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Corbin Maxwell » Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:04 pm

Isto wrote:
Corbin Maxwell wrote:
Isto wrote:

But how about this:


"Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."
"You're not so quick to refuse," she said, "when it's my sister."


Not only using he said/she said to show who is talking, but also as a little bit of a dramitic pause.



Agreed. It works there. A long string of any one thing will become tedious and call attention to itself. The above exchange works nicely to accent the situation and give personality to the characters. Both feisty. You just know they are destined for each other. I also like the alternating dialogue position. This reads very smoothly.



You're supposed to add to it.

"Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."
"You're not so quick to refuse," she said, "when it's my sister."
"I didn't have a choice," said Mike. "No one does with her."
For there is death in the sound of it, and a glamorous fatality, like silver pennons downrushing at sunset, or a dying fall of horns along the road to Ronceveaux.

The only easy day was yesterday.




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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Kary English » Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:08 pm

"Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."
"You're not so quick to refuse," she said, "when it's my sister."
"I didn't have a choice," said Mike. "No one does with her."
"Held a gun to your head, did she?" April crossed her arms over her chest.
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Corbin Maxwell » Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:14 pm

"Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."
"You're not so quick to refuse," she said, "when it's my sister."
"I didn't have a choice," said Mike. "No one does with her."
"Held a gun to your head, did she?" April crossed her arms over her chest.
Mike unclenched his fists and took a step back. "I wish it had been a gun."
For there is death in the sound of it, and a glamorous fatality, like silver pennons downrushing at sunset, or a dying fall of horns along the road to Ronceveaux.

The only easy day was yesterday.




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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby E.CaimanSands » Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:41 pm

Isto wrote:Consider:

"Monster," shouted Gus. And he yanked her arm, dragging her down the street.

Or:

"Monster!" Gus grabbed her arm and yanked her down the street.

[end-quote]

Note how much more immediate the second one is. Faster. If I'm in danger, I'd want the second Gus saving me.
My opinion about he said, she said... said is a wasted opportunity. Show SOMETHING.
Note: "Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."


"Monster!" yelled Gus. He dragged her down the street, palms sweating. He couldn't help it, he had to look back.

And there it was, an enormous alligator. Grinning. As he watched its jaws dropped open, words tumbled out. "You called?" it said.
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:44 pm

E.CaimanSands wrote:"Monster!" yelled Gus. He dragged her down the street, palms sweating. He couldn't help it, he had to look back.

And there it was, an enormous alligator. Grinning. As he watched its jaws dropped open, words tumbled out. "You called?" it said.


Please! An alligator answering to "Monster"?

Who are you, and what have you done with Elinor?
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WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE!
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REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT!
Patience. Patience. Patience. Patience. Patience.
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby E.CaimanSands » Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:47 pm

Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:
E.CaimanSands wrote:"Monster!" yelled Gus. He dragged her down the street, palms sweating. He couldn't help it, he had to look back.

And there it was, an enormous alligator. Grinning. As he watched its jaws dropped open, words tumbled out. "You called?" it said.


Please! An alligator answering to "Monster"?

Who are you, and what have you done with Elinor?


I'VE EATEN HER. MUAHA!

wotf019
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby s_c_baker » Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:51 pm

Corbin Maxwell wrote:"Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."
"You're not so quick to refuse," she said, "when it's my sister."
"I didn't have a choice," said Mike. "No one does with her."
"Held a gun to your head, did she?" April crossed her arms over her chest.
Mike unclenched his fists and took a step back. "I wish it had been a gun."

My, this is much more entertaining than my Q2 entry... wotf001
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Corbin Maxwell » Mon Mar 19, 2012 2:01 pm

E.CaimanSands wrote:
Isto wrote:Consider:

"Monster," shouted Gus. And he yanked her arm, dragging her down the street.

Or:

"Monster!" Gus grabbed her arm and yanked her down the street.

[end-quote]

Note how much more immediate the second one is. Faster. If I'm in danger, I'd want the second Gus saving me.
My opinion about he said, she said... said is a wasted opportunity. Show SOMETHING.
Note: "Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."


"Monster!" yelled Gus. He dragged her down the street, palms sweating. He couldn't help it, he had to look back.

And there it was, an enormous alligator. Grinning. As he watched its jaws dropped open, words tumbled out. "You called?" it said.


As I said above, I don't think you need to say yelled or screamed or shouted with an exclamation point.

But it could be done like this:


"Monster!" Gus grabbed her by the wrist and they ran for their lives down the street, almost keeping pace with the echo of Gus's scream. Behind their footfalls exploded the stomp of something enormous, some beast that could dent asphalt with its footprints. Gus couldn't help it. He looked back and there it was. An alligator the size of a station wagon. Gus ran faster, dragging the girl behind him. And as they ran he watched the alligator's jaws drop wide open. Row after row of teeth in that meat-grinding mouth. And from that deep maw crept the impossible: words.
"You called," said the alligator.
For there is death in the sound of it, and a glamorous fatality, like silver pennons downrushing at sunset, or a dying fall of horns along the road to Ronceveaux.

The only easy day was yesterday.




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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby s_c_baker » Mon Mar 19, 2012 2:09 pm

Hmm, you know, the earlier times I had assumed Gus was calling the girl the monster.

This probably says more about me than the writing, though. wotf001
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Corbin Maxwell » Mon Mar 19, 2012 2:19 pm

s_c_baker wrote:Hmm, you know, the earlier times I had assumed Gus was calling the girl the monster.

This probably says more about me than the writing, though. wotf001


Orginal post:
I always interpreted that as exclamation points outside of dialogue. That is, it is okay for the characters to yell and be excited, but when the narrative voice starts using them, if feels like it is trying to force the reader's emotions.

Consider:

"It's another frickin' monster!" Gus shouted, pulling at her arm.

Vs.

Suddenly Gus pulled at her arm. It was another monster!

Both are awkward.
For there is death in the sound of it, and a glamorous fatality, like silver pennons downrushing at sunset, or a dying fall of horns along the road to Ronceveaux.

The only easy day was yesterday.




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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Kary English » Mon Mar 19, 2012 2:35 pm

s_c_baker wrote:
Corbin Maxwell wrote:"Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."
"You're not so quick to refuse," she said, "when it's my sister."
"I didn't have a choice," said Mike. "No one does with her."
"Held a gun to your head, did she?" April crossed her arms over her chest.
Mike unclenched his fists and took a step back. "I wish it had been a gun."

My, this is much more entertaining than my Q2 entry... wotf001


And just about as long. :) Or was that Q1?
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Corbin Maxwell » Mon Mar 19, 2012 2:45 pm

s_c_baker wrote:
Corbin Maxwell wrote:"Yes." She tugged at his buttons.
He slapped her hand away. "I don't think so."
"You're not so quick to refuse," she said, "when it's my sister."
"I didn't have a choice," said Mike. "No one does with her."
"Held a gun to your head, did she?" April crossed her arms over her chest.
Mike unclenched his fists and took a step back. "I wish it had been a gun."

My, this is much more entertaining than my Q2 entry... wotf001



Well, I do like to entertain. Of course this about three people writing here.
For there is death in the sound of it, and a glamorous fatality, like silver pennons downrushing at sunset, or a dying fall of horns along the road to Ronceveaux.

The only easy day was yesterday.




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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Kary English » Mon Mar 19, 2012 2:50 pm

Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:
E.CaimanSands wrote:"Monster!" yelled Gus. He dragged her down the street, palms sweating. He couldn't help it, he had to look back.

And there it was, an enormous alligator. Grinning. As he watched its jaws dropped open, words tumbled out. "You called?" it said.


Please! An alligator answering to "Monster"?

Who are you, and what have you done with Elinor?


True story...

When my kidlet was a toddler, he insisted that we go by the monster tank every time we went to the grocery store. The very first time we went, a white-coated man whose apron was smeared with blood reached into the tank to pull out a dripping monster. The creature had too many legs, and it waved them in a slow, ethereal dance. Its segmented tail curled and uncurled, showing the lighter color where armored plates overlapped. The two front legs ended in enormous pincer-claws held shut by a thick rubber band that matched the monster's green-brown color.

This was rather too much for the kidlet, who let out a screech and tried to climb over my shoulder to escape the cthonic horror. There must have been a goodly dose of wonder along with the horror, because he asked to go back the very next time we visited. And if I ever lost track of him in the store after that, I knew I'd probably find him in the seafood department staring into the lobster tank.

Note to parents: Asking a child if he wants to see the lobsters is a trick question. When you're a two-year-old who hasn't a clue what a lobster is, the mind substitutes the apparently obvious word. :D
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Corbin Maxwell » Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:25 am

Another day of waiting....
For there is death in the sound of it, and a glamorous fatality, like silver pennons downrushing at sunset, or a dying fall of horns along the road to Ronceveaux.

The only easy day was yesterday.




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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby morshana » Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:30 am

Corbin Maxwell wrote:Another day of waiting....


Yeah...Trying to focus on getting Q2 polished to keep me busy.
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Dustin Adams » Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:32 am

Google just sent me an e-mail.

It reads: "Stop hitting refresh on Gmail! You're going to break our server."
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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Corbin Maxwell » Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:36 am

Dustin Adams wrote:Google just sent me an e-mail.

It reads: "Stop hitting refresh on Gmail! You're going to break our server."



I only check my email once a day, when I get home. You'll drive yourself crazy constantly checking it. Usually we get some word from KD about her sending back boxes to Joni. But it's been very quiet, too quiet (yes very cliche, but what the heck).
For there is death in the sound of it, and a glamorous fatality, like silver pennons downrushing at sunset, or a dying fall of horns along the road to Ronceveaux.

The only easy day was yesterday.




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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby AMcCarter » Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:41 am

Corbin Maxwell wrote:
Dustin Adams wrote:Google just sent me an e-mail.

It reads: "Stop hitting refresh on Gmail! You're going to break our server."



I only check my email once a day, when I get home. You'll drive yourself crazy constantly checking it. Usually we get some word from KD about her sending back boxes to Joni. But it's been very quiet, too quiet (yes very cliche, but what the heck).


I have my e-mails sent to my phone. I'll never miss a rejection again!


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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby s_c_baker » Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:41 am

I don't even "check" my email any more. It's open all the time, and has thus lost the strength to make me nervous. It is no longer a thing that happens so much as background noise. Kind of like how you never hear the ocean if you live next to it until the crabs attack and carry off your bones to their little caves, or how if you live by a highway the sound of cars doesn't register until they transform into giant robots and ask you to borrow a spoon of sugar for their tea.

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Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby s_c_baker » Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:44 am

Kary James wrote:
Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:
E.CaimanSands wrote:"Monster!" yelled Gus. He dragged her down the street, palms sweating. He couldn't help it, he had to look back.

And there it was, an enormous alligator. Grinning. As he watched its jaws dropped open, words tumbled out. "You called?" it said.


Please! An alligator answering to "Monster"?

Who are you, and what have you done with Elinor?


True story...

When my kidlet was a toddler, he insisted that we go by the monster tank every time we went to the grocery store. The very first time we went, a white-coated man whose apron was smeared with blood reached into the tank to pull out a dripping monster. The creature had too many legs, and it waved them in a slow, ethereal dance. Its segmented tail curled and uncurled, showing the lighter color where armored plates overlapped. The two front legs ended in enormous pincer-claws held shut by a thick rubber band that matched the monster's green-brown color.

This was rather too much for the kidlet, who let out a screech and tried to climb over my shoulder to escape the cthonic horror. There must have been a goodly dose of wonder along with the horror, because he asked to go back the very next time we visited. And if I ever lost track of him in the store after that, I knew I'd probably find him in the seafood department staring into the lobster tank.

Note to parents: Asking a child if he wants to see the lobsters is a trick question. When you're a two-year-old who hasn't a clue what a lobster is, the mind substitutes the apparently obvious word. :D


Yikes. Those lobster tanks are scary, although they've always depressed me more than anything. Kind of like pet stores, and zoos.
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My contest history: Semi-finalist, R, HM, R, R, HM, HM, R, R, R, R, HM, R, R, R, R, Winner
My published fiction, poetry, &c.

francisbruno
Posts: 374
Joined: Fri Jul 22, 2011 5:37 pm

Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby francisbruno » Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:59 am

Won't be until tomorrow/ Thursday morning...

My 2 yr old girl loves the lobster tank. Always have to stop and stare.
Accomplishments:
SF: V32Q2, V28Q4
HM: V29 Q2, V30 Q2
Dave Farland: Short Story Master's Class, World Building
Viable Paradise XVI
Uncle Orson's 2011
"Stalkworthy"
http://www.francisbruno.com

Corbin Maxwell
Posts: 431
Joined: Fri Dec 14, 2007 11:53 am

Re: Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Postby Corbin Maxwell » Tue Mar 20, 2012 10:19 am

Q2 has just been submitted.


And a big thank you to Kary James for critquing my Q2. I ended up cutting about 3,000 words from the original and changing things as she suggested.
For there is death in the sound of it, and a glamorous fatality, like silver pennons downrushing at sunset, or a dying fall of horns along the road to Ronceveaux.

The only easy day was yesterday.




SF x 1
HM x 10


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