Discussion → re: Playground

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    Mathew Paust
    Dec 13, 10:18pm

    Doesn't work for me as effectively as Playground and Stuff do. Not sure why. I'm not a critical reader. Hate critical reading, which might have something to do with why I hate editors. Things work for me or they don't. I can toss out ideas as to why i think they affect me the way they do, but these ideas might well miss the mark, as I'm basically an intuitive reader and writer -- an id-driven type, which means I'm no good in the subtleties of verbal combat, moving straight from passive to GET THE FUCK OUT OF MY FACE! or YOU'RE SO FINE! Writing is the only way I can manage reason and emotion in a fairly balanced mix.

    Playground doesn't give me any clues as to story arc -- not even an implied launch direction so's to give my imagination a ballistic path. And the insouciance that marks the other two stories so beautifully isn't there, either. At least I didn't pick up on it. It seems more a thought-out, plotted piece rather than one flowing naturally from the storyteller's secret cellar. Granted, Freefalling is carefully plotted, but the idea is so clever and the noir voice so ironically inverted that the sheer joy of bringing it off comes through like a chorus of soprano nymphets hired for a birthday celebration -- my birthday celebration. You should -- if you haven't -- enter Freefalling (Freefall?) in every fiction contest you can find. It's a prizefighter.

    Maybe you can get Playground to work, too. Dunno. My guess is that the problem is in the beginning somewhere, which, for me, is where most stories either make or break. Maybe the zombie ID is introduced too subtly. If the POV favors a breather, this could be the problem. If it does, then the fear should be up front and visceral.

    I'll read it again in a day or two. See if maybe I was in a funky mood when I read it.

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    Mathew Paust
    Dec 13, 10:20pm

    Ooops, correction: "Doesn't work for me as effectively as Freefall and Stuff do." (I have ADD, seriously. Get going on a thought wave and don't pay enuf attention to details, such as story titles.)

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    Adam Sifre
    Dec 17, 10:25am

    Thanks Matt. I will ruminate and percolate and see what I can do.

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    Mathew Paust
    Dec 17, 10:20pm

    I still have to read it again. I was in a middle school classroom all day sub-teaching. Unable to access Fictionaut from the school computer. I might have missed something in my first two reads. You're a helluva fine writer. I'm about halfway thru I've Been Deader, and I'm still laffing several times on every page. Doesn't seem to be a story arc, tho, but the characters and writing are so unique and good I haven't needed one. But I think with a story -- something like Fred's trying to get to Oz or find the Valley of the Whale Brains -- would give it a tension that would make it even better.

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