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The Gray Writer

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  #1  
Old 04-05-2013, 05:04 PM
Enchanter (Offline)
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He sat, amongst crickets, staring at the parchment. It was blank. The pen merrily swung, back and forth, to the introspective tunes of his fingers. Beads of sweat trickled down his face, as if they too had lost interest in him. His dullness lurked in the shadows, hidden but it's presence felt. It's presence as ominous as death's foreboding stare, as ominous as failure's covetous stare.

His mind raced, but the parchment lay dead. The pen ready to infuse life, but life absconded his imagination, while his mind raced in the empty corridor where vacuous wind led it astray. The simpletons called it writer's block. He knew what it was. He was dull, drab and colourless.

Words had done the bidding of many a great men. Joyce, who swept aside the simpletons and embraced the scholars. Faulkner, who formed a web so grave, only the diligent escaped the beast. Blake, who painted the infinity of the universe. Wilde, who jeered and mocked, for he was their master. Alas, I remained a simple man.

He broke the window free from it's lock, and it thrust it's arms wide open in the brazen wind. He peered out, into the frivolous condescending dark of the night. The moon drifted away, as my stare grazed it's surface. The clouds sat motionless, hoping their disdain rained upon me. The sky oblivious to it all, looked on.

He looked at the parchment, mocking his impotence. Enough! If words were to be his adversary, then so be it! He would flog them, till they bled on the parchment. Till their blood bemoaned it's fate. Till it's howls blared like horns from mountain tops announcing the culmination of all life. Till the parchment consumed all it's life, all it's powers and became life itself. A life, deeper than the deepest river, which drowned all the eyes that devoured it.

He brought to life the words with the blunt tip of his pen. The parchment lay lifeless, but life trickled into it's stems like water inseminating life within a plant with his comrade, the sun. The sky steadily turned orange, then pink, then red, then a myriad of colours coursed through it's entrails lighting up even nothingness. The clouds burst into life, confused amongst the colours, a fusion of words and ink it had never seen the likes of. Dazed and mystified, the clouds lost all control, thunder cracked it's whip, rain dived to it's abyss. The moon, perplexed, rose above it all and applauded the carnival. It had forgotten it's solemn heart, it's lust for light, it's vexation at darkness. The stars shined so bright that mountains moved in anguish. Nothing lay still, everything and everyone danced for the birth of life.

And as sudden as it had started, it ended. The clouds ceased mid-way, and sat motionless, and gray as ever. The moon remembered all it's strife and sorrow, and looked on as covetous as always. The sky, in shame of it's dullness, dared not look.

I looked at the final alphabet; it's hollow requiem and the impending funeral march illuminated as I placed the final punctuation. And then, he lay on the floor and sighed. He was once again dull, drab and colourless.

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  #2  
Old 04-05-2013, 05:16 PM
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It was fairly well written but the story was nothing new. The writing was overly descriptive and distracting. I would use more succinct words. There are better ways to describe things (in my opinion) than vague sweeps of two or three words.
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Old 04-05-2013, 11:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Enchanter View Post
He sat, Delete comma amongst crickets, staring at the parchment. It was blank. Much better to say he was staring at the blank parchment. The pen merrily swung, back and forth, to the introspective tunes of his fingers. Beads of sweat trickled down his face, as if they too had lost interest in him. His dullness lurked in the shadows, hidden but it's This says "hidden but it is presence felt," which makes no sense. You need " its " without the apostrophe. presence felt. It's presence as ominous as death's foreboding stare, as ominous as failure's covetous stare. If you intended to say "It is presence as ominous as death's foreboding stare," then leave as is. If you wanted possessive, lose the apostrophe in 'its.'

His mind raced, but the parchment lay dead. The pen ready to infuse life, but life absconded his imagination, while his mind raced in the empty corridor where vacuous wind led it astray. The simpletons called it writer's block. He knew what it was. He was dull, drab Oxford comma and colourless.

The narrative is trying way too hard. Way. You have very vivid descriptions here, but you're going all the way around the block to get them, and the reader will notice that. The reader can't get lost in the story unless the writer disappears into the page.

Words had done the bidding of many a great men You say 'a' so this needs to be 'man,' singular. If you want 'men,' you need to delete 'a.' Joyce, who swept aside the simpletons and embraced the scholars. Faulkner, who formed a web so grave, only the diligent escaped the beast. Blake, who painted the infinity of the universe. Wilde, who jeered and mocked, for he was their master. Alas, I remained a simple man.

He broke the window free from it's lock, This says "He broke the window free from it is lock." Remove the apostrophe. and it thrust it's arms wide "...and it thrust it is arms wide..." Remove the apostrophe. open in the brazen wind. He By now, I'm wondering who 'he' is. peered out, into the frivolous condescending dark of the night. The moon drifted away, as my stare grazed it's surface. "...as my stare grazed it is surface." Remove the apostrophe. The clouds sat motionless, hoping their disdain rained upon me. The sky oblivious to it all, looked on. Bizarre POV issues.

He looked at the parchment, mocking his impotence. Enough! If words were to be his adversary, then so be it! He would flog them, till Technically, this is correct, but it's a huge peeve of mine. This is another word that was misused and misspelled until Webster caved and validated it. "Till" is used as a shortened form of "until." "Till" actually is a verb--tilling soil--and a noun--a cash drawer. The word "until" only has one 'L.' It is illogical to use the short form, saving only two letters, and then proceed to add one back--one that wasn't even there to begin with. The proper short form of "until" is " 'til " Apostrophe to denote you've dropped the 'un,' and then add 'til.' If it's the first word in the sentence, I'd spell it out so you're not beginning a sentence with an apostrophe. Go with 'until' here. they bled on the parchment. Till their blood bemoaned it's fate. "Till their blood bemoaned it is fate." Remove the apostrophe. Till it's howls blared "Till it is howls blared..." Remove the apostrophe. like horns from mountain tops announcing the culmination of all life. Till the parchment consumed all it's life, all it's powers "...parchment consumed all it is life, all it is powers..." Remove the apostrophes. and became life itself. A life, deeper than the deepest river, which drowned all the eyes that devoured it.

I got lost in all the rapid-fire abstractions. You definitely have a gift for prose. Now you need restraint.

He brought to life the words with the blunt tip of his pen. The parchment lay lifeless, but life trickled into it's stems "...life trickled into it is stems." Remove apostrophe. like water inseminating life within a plant with his comrade, the sun. The sky steadily turned orange, then pink, then red, then a myriad of colours coursed through it's entrails "through it is entrails." Remove apostrophe. lighting up even nothingness. The clouds burst into life, confused amongst the colours, a fusion of words and ink it had never seen the likes of. Dazed and mystified, the clouds lost all control, thunder cracked it's whip, rain dived to it's abyss. "...thunder cracked it is whip, rain dived to it is abyss..." Remove apostrophes. The moon, perplexed, rose above it all and applauded the carnival. It had forgotten it's solemn heart, it's lust for light, it's vexation at darkness. <<Remove all apostrophes. The stars shined so bright that mountains moved in anguish. Nothing lay still, Comma to period, start new sentence here>>everything and everyone danced for the birth of life.

And as sudden as it had started, it ended. The clouds ceased mid-way, and sat motionless, and gray as ever. The moon remembered all it's strife and sorrow, "The moon remembered all it is strife and sorrow" Remove apostrophe. and looked on as covetous as always. The sky, in shame of it's dullness, dared not look. "...in shame of it is dullness..." Remove apostrophe.

I looked at the final alphabet; it's hollow requiem "...it is hollow requiem," which is only correct if that's what you meant to say here. If not, remove apostrophe. and the impending funeral march illuminated as I placed the final punctuation. And then, he lay on the floor and sighed. He was once again dull, drab Oxford comma and colourless.
I didn't rewrite those sentences in their literal meaning based on " it's " in order to be an ahole--truly. If you train yourself to read it out like that every time you use an apostrophe, then if the meaning isn't what you were going for, then you know to use " its " without the apostrophe. " Its " is the possessive. Its color, its weight, its height. If you put apostrophes in there, you have "it is color, it is weight, it is height."

It's just to train your eye. Though, if you want to cuss me out, I'll understand, but I'm not trying to be condescending. It's a learning mechanism like mnemonics.


You write very well.

I'll say that again: you write very well. I can't imagine I could have come up with most of this stuff, and most of it went sailing a mile over my head. Beware of imbuing inanimate objects with qualities or abilities of living things unless you're writing fantasy. It comes off as pretentious to the reader.

You need restraint. Your grammar issues appear to be limited to abuse of apostrophes (lol). The rest is clean. Using "Till" for "until" just simply sets off my tourettes. Apologies. But the proper short form for "until" is " 'til " There's no need to add an extra L that's not in the original word.

The main tragedy here is that I have only the foggiest idea what this piece was about. You don't want to do that unless you're tasked with writing extremely heady prose.
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  #4  
Old 04-05-2013, 11:58 PM
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And again, font size went all screwy on me. Trying to edit the post makes it worse. This only happens when the original posts have fonts or font sizes changed. No idea why. Apologies.
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Old 04-06-2013, 03:05 AM
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Odonne, thanks for your feedback. It's much appreciated. I'll keep your feedback in mind when I write the next time.
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Old 04-06-2013, 03:41 AM
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Northernadams, thank you so much for your extensive critical analysis! Seriously, thank you so much for taking the time out to do so!

Haha, I'm really embarrassed about the apostrophe bastardization. I'll definitely try not to make the same mistake again. I really don't know how I managed to do it. :|

Oh, I never really knew about 'till' and 'until'. I had always wondered though, when to use which since both mean the same thing. Clears up a lot of things.

I have always loved writers who assign physical traits, qualities and grievances to inanimate objects. For instance, Blake. It just brings the world alive. Furthermore, here there are only two characters. The environment and the protagonist. I really had to assign human elements to inanimate objects to explore the difference between his dullness and when his words sprang everything to life. I do understand the pretentious repercussions though. I hope it didn't come out that way.

Ironically, my story's as lifeless here as the protagonist. I thought I had to really step up the environment, one where the reader could almost see the bizarreness. I can see how I might have lost focus, and need to apply restraint.

Thanks a lot for your feedback again. I'll definitely keep all these issues in mind when I write the next time. Although I'll say this, when I read, I read very intently. Writers like Joyce can go over my head at times, but when I finally understand him, it's an enriching experience. I'm hardly the man himself, but I hate laying out everything clearly. Here, all the descriptions were not filler descriptions, but meant to make sense of the story. Like I said, the second character. Although, if an accomplished writer like yourself had difficulty, I would say I definitely lost my focus a bit. I'll work on it. It's important to know when to put the full stop, I guess. Once again, thanks a lot!
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Old 04-06-2013, 11:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Enchanter View Post
Northernadams, thank you so much for your extensive critical analysis! Seriously, thank you so much for taking the time out to do so!

Haha, I'm really embarrassed about the apostrophe bastardization. I'll definitely try not to make the same mistake again. I really don't know how I managed to do it. :|

Oh, I never really knew about 'till' and 'until'. I had always wondered though, when to use which since both mean the same thing. Clears up a lot of things.

I have always loved writers who assign physical traits, qualities and grievances to inanimate objects. For instance, Blake. It just brings the world alive. Furthermore, here there are only two characters. The environment and the protagonist. I really had to assign human elements to inanimate objects to explore the difference between his dullness and when his words sprang everything to life. I do understand the pretentious repercussions though. I hope it didn't come out that way.

Ironically, my story's as lifeless here as the protagonist. I thought I had to really step up the environment, one where the reader could almost see the bizarreness. I can see how I might have lost focus, and need to apply restraint.

Thanks a lot for your feedback again. I'll definitely keep all these issues in mind when I write the next time. Although I'll say this, when I read, I read very intently. Writers like Joyce can go over my head at times, but when I finally understand him, it's an enriching experience. I'm hardly the man himself, but I hate laying out everything clearly. Here, all the descriptions were not filler descriptions, but meant to make sense of the story. Like I said, the second character. Although, if an accomplished writer like yourself had difficulty, I would say I definitely lost my focus a bit. I'll work on it. It's important to know when to put the full stop, I guess. Once again, thanks a lot!
The story's not dull at all. I love reading something that isn't painful to read. And I have no idea why you'd be embarrassed about the apostrophes--everybody does it. My only point was that if you can get into the habit of reading " it's " out like "it is," that will help figure out which one you need--with or without the apostrophe.

And, accomplished writer? Uh, um, I'm just fumbling around in here like everybody else. Accomplished? Damn, man, you made me choke on my gum.

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Old 04-07-2013, 04:09 AM
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Haha, good one.
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