End of the Line -- B.H. Marks


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Post May 08, 2006, 07:24:43 PM

Re: End of the Line -- B.H. Marks

An old theme set in the future. <br><br>Good story, I liked it. <br><br>I thought at first that some evil pirates were going to attack the ship, and the old guy would save them all by tapping into his experience! You know, flying by the seat of his pants! and overcoming the pirates by quick thinking and old tactics that were forgotten. <br><br>The story was easy to follow and held my interest. For me, that is always a must.<br><br>
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Post May 09, 2006, 12:37:15 AM

Re: End of the Line -- B.H. Marks

It felt more like a vignette than a full-bodied story, but an interesting scene nontheless. <br><br>It's funny what Megawatts said. I actually had a feeling it was going to take a United 93 turn, but that's just me. Let a passenger in the cockpit? Just sounded kinda dangerous under current conditions.

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Post May 16, 2006, 07:25:42 AM

Re: End of the Line -- B.H. Marks

I loved it. Brought a lump to my throat. (Hhhmm, manly cough.)<br><br>A nice, old-fashioned slice of space opera.<br><br><br>Gareth
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Post May 18, 2006, 10:33:28 AM

Re: End of the Line -- B.H. Marks

An obvious scenario would be one where systems failures leave a current-generation crew at a loss as to how to navigate -- but Waters knows 'seat-of-the-pants' techniques that don't depend on current technology. Or is that a little too 'Space Cowboys'?<br><br>(Suppose an unauthorized mining operation uses a micronuke to nudge an asteroid into a more convenient orbit (or just blast away enough regolith to make mining easier) ... and the EMP, too close and concentrated for shielding designed to handle solar flare radiation, clobbers much of the ship's hardware ...)<br><br>Robert M.
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Post May 22, 2006, 05:38:34 AM

Re: End of the Line -- B.H. Marks

Or, the other option is that nothing goes wrong, but the nice quiet flight gives 'Deep' the time to tell us about his adventurous youth, just after the war when ships had names and there was port at every bar...<br><br>Gareth
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Post June 04, 2006, 01:13:29 AM

Re: End of the Line -- B.H. Marks

I thought this story average. I found B.’s other story, Enter the Dragon, to have been better. This story, however, does not have a mature universe to build upon, like the Mare setting for Enter the Dragon, so the problem of telling versus showing is exacerbated.<br><br>Now keep in mind I don’t think this story is bad. The writer demonstrates skill. I like the pacing and word choices. In order to better highlight the problems that exists, I’ll compare it to similarly themed chapter within The Red Pony by John Steinbeck. Yes, I realize I myself would find it unfair if anyone held my writing up to Mr. Steinbeck, but I think the comparison has merit.<br><br>In The End of the Line, we are given a history lesson of a pioneering age recently passed. An old man laments the adventure long gone. He misses his freedom. As a kindly gesture, the captain allows the old man to sit in his chair. An old pilot is once again able to relieve his glory. It is a bittersweet moment.<br><br>In the Chapter 4 - Leader of the People of The Red Pony, Jody’s grandfather visits his family. Jody keenly listens to the stories his grandfather relates about leading the wagon train out west until, like a curse, the Pacific Ocean unfolded before them. The grandfather misses the freedom, the sense of adventure. Jody’s father, Carl, however, rankles at the old man’s stories. Pragmatic and cruel, Carl complains about Jody’s grandfather, stating the old days have passed. The grandfather appears unexpectedly, overhearing the complaint. In that harsh moment, the old man is forced to confront reality. When he later sits in the chair on the porch, Jody no longer sees the powerful figure of his grandfather, but a shrunken old man, his spirit broken.<br><br>In B.H. Mark’s story, the reader is told of a bygone age. Most of the story is related through dialogue. In Steinbeck’s story, we experience the contrast of the old and the new through the dynamics of the grandfather and Carl. Jody is the conduit, the eyes that see that shame in Carl’s behavior. We sense the boy’s pain as he attempts in vain to cajole his dispirited grandfather in retelling stories on the westward expansion. The first approach is simple. The latter, however, is much more complex, and allows the reader a richer experience.<br><br>I think if B.H. Mark is going to take the next step, he will need to resolve his tendency to tell instead of show. His mechanics are sound. The words flow smoothly. I think he could be better than average. He just needs to challenge himself more.<br>
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Post June 09, 2006, 02:27:50 AM

End of the Line -- B.H. Marks

<br>sorry i missed on this one for so long, it's really a pleasant piece with excellent, inventive star system names and a good twist on the sorry state of the world economy with its cycles of boom and bust.<br><br>imagined Dale Dye for some reason as Deep Waters (good nickname), but didn't appreciate too much Mag's contribution. what was he doing there all that time except for chiming in whenever Carruthers said something?<br><br>enjoyed the comparison to cowboys and railroads, by the way. <br><br>as someone who isn't precisely a big fan of space faring stories i am sensitive to those that have a spark to them, and this one did have that in fact, so well done.<br><br>Lee

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Post July 01, 2006, 02:59:39 PM

End of the Line -- B.H. Marks

thanks for the insightful feedback. always good to hear it from the author's mouth.<br><br>Lee

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