There Once Was a Legend About... by J.A. Howe

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Post August 10, 2004, 10:40:15 PM

There Once Was a Legend About... by J.A. Howe

The Destroy the Ring game certainly seems more enjoyable than any Lord of the Rings(TM) game I've ever looked at, and the one year this game takes may be less time than it takes to play the board game!<br><br>This was not a serious story, so a serious critique of it may not be appropriate.<br><br>There was decent amount of funny bits, and a good parody of the Rings Trilogy(TM). All in all, I think it was a farce that was worth the read.<br><br><br>Two things that set me off:<br><br>First, in the first paragraph, there is a parenthetical phrase in the middle of a spoken passage. Did the speaker say "Open parenthesis. Internal Rat Stalkers. Close parenthesis."??<br><br>Second, there were a lot of successive passages of unidentified dialog. I can't stand that. <br><br>Other than that, there wasn't anything else I couldn't overlook. In a story meant to be silly, most of the conventions we follow are silly as well.<br><br>Nate
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Post August 16, 2004, 04:13:23 PM

,Re: There Once Was a Legend About... by J.A. Howe

Pretty funny, for the most part, but with minor mechanical problems, as noted by Nate the K.  The idea of the whole War of the Ring becoming an annual sporting event (and the rights to it having been stolen from the skinny old halfling -- named Mollug, perhaps?) -- was an entertaining one.  Reminiscent in tone of Pratt's Discworld, largely because of the rather Cockney British soccer houligan air of most of the characters.<br><br>What a game!  Everybody in it cheats, or tries to, with results varying according to the level of incompetence of the cheater.  Reminded me of a major professional wrestling event ...<br><br>Robert M.
Last edited by Robert_Moriyama on August 16, 2004, 04:13:47 PM, edited 1 time in total.
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Post August 18, 2004, 03:55:54 PM

Re: There Once Was a Legend About... by J.A. Howe

I've got to agree with Nate about the unidentified dialogue. I hate that, and I write that way myself! (Sometimes the voices in my head talk too fast! LOL!) But other than that I didn't have any major problems with this story.<br>It was funny, and a fun read. Twice more through the Word Processor, and we might have lost this one to some sneaky publisher that stoops to *paying* for stories.<br>Dan<br>
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Post August 18, 2004, 09:14:02 PM

Re: There Once Was a Legend About... by J.A. Howe

I have a slightly different spin on the question of formatting dialogue. Put it this way: imagine if the characterisation was so superb that identifiers became completely unnecessary, because at any moment it is blatantly obvious who is speaking, purely because what they are saying could not be said by anyone else in the story. When this happens, it works really well, in fact in some in-depth conversations, adding in regular identifiers and associated actions could get in the way and slow things down. Moreover, what need for narrative descriptions of people's reaction, when their emotion can be demonstrated adequately by what they have said?<br><br>That said, it is often the case that such dialogue does become confusing, and it is probably sensible for mosty authors to at least include some identifiers. I hate writing scenes with more than two people because it feels like you have to identify each speaker- at least with two you can assume the dialogue after "said John" belongs to the other character.<br><br>Sorry to turn this story thread into a general regurgitation!
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Post August 18, 2004, 09:41:08 PM

Re: There Once Was a Legend About... by J.A. Howe

Taglines should be used when needed. Authors should read what they have written to see if it reads okay. You can't depend on this editor to correct your minor technical mistakes, especially when deadline is looming.<br><br>According to legend, Oscar Wilde spent one morning revising a manuscript and took out one comma. After lunch, he returned to the struggle for several hours and put back the comma he had taken out in the morning. A striving for perfection is the mark of an artist.<br><br>I see I just got my first star! Happy day!
Last edited by Cary on August 18, 2004, 09:42:54 PM, edited 1 time in total.
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