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The Alley by R. Gene Turchin

PostPosted: May 04, 2018, 09:36:48 PM
by Lester Curtis
I'm not sure why, but I've been seeing quite a bit of dystopian writing lately. It's dismal stuff to read, but a lot of it is well-written. This is one such. Mr. Turchin doesn't waste his words or the reader's time, he just describes a very clear character arc--and its inevitable endpoint.

He sets up the alley as a place for such endpoints, with hints of the supernatural, but, wisely, with no spoilers. It's one-way only, to somewhere beyond this place of wrath and tears.

My only criticism of this story would be in its use of a somewhat overworn setting ("... between the old shuttered ‘home for the criminally insane’ and the bleak building that once housed the ‘hospital for the indigent.’ ") as well as the somewhat overworn character profile (addicted homeless vet). These things work, but I'd like to see something fresh. Tip of the hat: the alley has lights, at least; the default for such places is often some kind of darkness. Maybe the ghosts are having a disco party.

I spotted a few mechanical errors, but not many. All in all, good job.

Re: The Alley by R. Gene Turchin

PostPosted: May 06, 2018, 09:16:18 AM
by Megawatts
Interesting story and one that is true! The lights in the alley are symbolisms, representing the depression of those that live on the edge and only have death to meet them, eventually. That is their bright light. How many live in on edge—too many to count. Many Veterans are out there struggling with guilt, anxiety and remorse for serving, yet all the wrong they did were driven by the government and not their actions. After I left Vietnam, I held that thought always. Others live on the edge for reasons so numerous the it would take a book to catalog them.

The intro grabbed my attention, and the word usage throughout this story good. I had no trouble following it, and didn’t become bored with any part. A nice flow that held my interest. Good writing in this one!!

Nice job!