FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Eternal Phoenix on Thu Jul 12, 2012 9:06 pm

Ten wrote:Aw, I was enjoying that, Eternal Phoenix! lol, I want to know what happens next. I really like your entry. ^^

Oh, no. The whole story's there. I just turned the ending from something that probably would've been 500 words on it's own if not more into that last paragraph. I didn't flesh out either of the fight scenes like I wanted to, either.

I did enjoy yours as well, Ten. It's well written and very descriptive. I just don't understand what the heck happened.
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Kalon Ordona II on Fri Jul 13, 2012 11:13 pm

The Salt of the Nymph

Spoiler:

Flesh as smooth as water, the prone and bluish woman lay half submerged--still as death--upon the heartless gravel bed.
Hair like midnight, beauty ageless, no sign but one that the magic of her life yet sang: the tiny stream that dug its channel--its salty fount her crying eyes--from the jagged rocks beneath her cheek and down the shore, into the cloudy deep of the lake that was her home.
This was Anna the fay, whose once bright spirit now manifested such silent, endless tears.

Days passed, then months, then years, as elsewhere the tyrant Arthur frantically consolidated power in Britain, fearful of the half-demon's curse. He had sealed the creature, Emrys, with the sword he stole from the lady of the lake, had impaled the enemy on a stone, and had thought himself the victor. But before the seal could form complete, Emrys had said, "The one who pulls this sword from me will be the one who pulls the kingdom from you." And though Arthur had built a keep around the site of the half-demon's demise and filled it with earth and rubble, yet still his reign was haunted by that curse. He became the greatest king Britain had yet known, but he was a king that knew nothing of peace. He was trapped, but it was the rest of the land that paid the price. Only when his fay prince, Mordred, had nearly come of age, did Arthur begin to think the curse had been outlasted, that he had won after all, and that his kingdom and legacy would live on forever.

* * * * *
The Keep of Emrys was long since overgrown. Bush, vines and trees crowded in around the mortared stone. A single tree had taken root atop its roof, somehow finding a way through to the earth within--and finding it saturated with magic water. The tree grew tall, its limbs grew long, and its roots grew deep, and deeper, until one day they wrapped around the hilt of a gilded sword.

The base of the keep exploded outward; the stone shattered, the earth scattered, and the water drained. The tree's great roots held the top of the keep intact, suspended above a glowing, man-shaped body.

Emrys woke to the sight of a bright spike of metal suspended above his chest. Suspended by an inverted cone of roots, surrounded by walls of hewn stone. He lay there for the longest time, completely baffled, while his body healed itself of the decades-long wound.

When understanding dawned, it dawned in rage. For his curse had been defeated. No one had pulled the sword.

And yet, he was free.

The half-demon stood, tore his claw-like nails into the tree roots, and grasped the sword. He held it up, examining it close. He had always known it was a magic sword, or it could not have pierced the stone and sealed him. "Where did you come from?" He asked it.

It did not answer.
It sang.

He moved it one way, and the song faded. He moved it another, and the song renewed. If he held it still, it faded again.
"Very well, singing sword," he said. "Lead on."

* * * * *
Emrys traveled many miles through deserted clefts and forgotten woods. Gradually, from the direction the sword was leading to, there came a powerful reek, and the healthy wood all around began to turn into rot. "How could such a bright sword have come from such an awful place?"

Then all at once the view opened upon a wide bed of gravel, the dark waters of a small lake proclaiming itself the source of the rank odor. There were no flies, no dead beasts, nor any other creature. Even so, Emrys covered his nose and mouth with the sleeve of his free arm.

Then he saw her.

A stark white upper body faded to a bluish tone as it neared the water, where her legs and feet remained trapped in the lake. She lay face-down, one arm outstretched as if reaching for something. When the half-demon approached, the sword sang in the prone woman's direction. He looked at the sword. "Is this where you belong?"

He knelt near the woman's outstretched hand, gently lifted her forearm. He gasped to feel its hard, textured surface, like some sort of mineral. But her joints moved as if made of flesh, and he opened her hand, and into it he pressed the hilt of the singing sword.

For a moment nothing happened, except the singing stopped. But Emrys looked closely and saw that a small stream ran from her cheek to the murky expanse. It was as if someone had carved out a narrow path for it. Then the water ceased, and the woman's fingers slowly closed around the sword hilt, and Emrys heard a long, slow intake of breath. There was a flash, a cry, and a sudden confusion of movements and spalshes of water. Emrys managed to stagger back out of the way, even as the woman regained her own senses and stood gazing this way and that.

"Where...?"Her voice trailed off. She looked at the sword, held both ends to examine its length, ran her hand back and forth along the blade, perhaps lovingly. But her face grew confused and sad as she beheld the blackness of the lake wherein she stood.

Emrys found himself enchanted by her beauty. If he had been an incubus, like his father, he might have taken her there and then. As it was, he felt he would do anything for her. She was some type of fay--a nymph, maybe, but unlike any he'd ever encountered. Was this love? He entreatied her. "My lady..."

Only then did she notice him, but her eyes went wide with outrage. "Demon spawn!" she cried, clutching the sword in defense. "Are you the one who poisoned my waters?!'

"Lady, I know nothing of this wood or this lake. But if you will it, I can help you heal them. Please, I cannot bear to see you sorrowing. I am yours to command."

"It is... within my power to cure the water on my own," she said, and he saw it was true. As she held the sword, even now the waters near her feet were less clouded than before. "But how came you by this power?" she went on. "Demons cannot bring life."

"My mother was a human," said Emrys. "A Christian princess."

The woman lowered the sword somewhat. "I am Anna the fay, lady of the lake. How are you called?"

"My name is Emrys. But I have never seen a lake spirit half turned to living salt. How came your flesh to be so?"

Anna lowered the sword, her eyes downcast. "I have cried many tears since my sword and my son were stolen."
Emrys at once felt empathetic anger. "Who?"
"A man named Arthur. He took my purity, then he took my power, and my child. I do not even know what he named him."

The half-demon felt his body tense and his brows deepen with resolve. "The same man used that very blade to seal me between the sword and the stone. My curse could have defeated him at the last, but he has broken it. If he did this to you, let us bring him to justice."

"There would be no justice in my hand for him. Only vengeance. But it can never be. I am bonded to this lake. I can never leave."

"If you were carried?"
"I would slip from your grasp and drain into the lake. Water always returns whence it came."
"But you are not water. Or if you were, not anymore--not all. How if the rest of you were as hard as your head and shoulders?"

Anna gasped as the possibility presented itself. "If I could make myself so, I would do it."

"It is within my power. Command me, lady, and it is yours."

The woman dropped her eyes. "Emrys... Yes, I would be free of these waters. Please, make it so!"

* * * * *
Flesh as white as salt, the tall and slender woman strode ever on--sword in hand--along the weathered, traveled roads. Hair like midnight, clad in sable, no cause but one for which Anna and her Emrys fought: the end of Arthur and his reign.

It began in that lonely corner of the great isle. Their magic and their cause breathed life into withered hearts, souls starved under Arthur's brand of freedom. All too soon it was civil war. Every day new skirmishes and looming events threatened to inflame beyond control. Yet somehow Anna and Emrys kept their side together, and their cause became a wave washing across Britain. And they came to be called the "Salt and Sight" of victory, honor, fortune, hope... whatever was needed. For they two had come to comprehend how new a dawn it was that swept the land, a change that mattered far beyond their joint vendetta.

All the same, when at the fort of Camlann the final battle was arrayed, the force without and foes within counted for nothing next to the contest of powers: Anna and Emrys on the one hand, whose magic sight and magic sword had brought them to this moment; and Arthur King of Britain on the other, with his prince and heir beside, complexion pale, and black of hair. The battle between the soldiers might not have existed. Anna and Emrys obtained the inner walls alone and made their way into the heart of the fort. Then the four stood in the throneroom, face to face.

"So you are the ones," the tyrant said. "That sword..."
"My sword."
"You pulled it from the creature?" He gestured with his own sword at Emrys. There was a note of fear in his voice. Fear of the half-demon's curse.
It was Emrys himself who answered. "She needed no help from me. Your keep destroyed my curse. The sword is hers because it was hers from the beginning."
The king looked again at the woman. "Then... you..."
"Do you remember me now, snake?"
By the dark smile that transformed his face, he did. "Anna the fay. 'The Salt.' It makes sense. So, you changed your very form in order to strike at me."
"Give back my child! Where is my son!?"
"You do not know?"

Into the silence, Arthur laughed with surprised, cruel mirth. "You do not even know how long it has been, do you? Well, you will find no answers from me."

"Father, what is she talking about?" said Mordred.

The fay turned in shock toward the man.
"There is your answer, my lady!" said Emrys. "That must be the prince... your son."

Arthur ground out a sigh. "It is true, Mordred. This witch who turns brother against brother was the water sprite I met in the forest, long ago."

"Mordred?" said Anna.

The prince looked from his father to the fay woman. "You say this is my mother? You are my mother?"

"Mordred, my son..." Anna had lowered her guard.

Mordred lifted his chin. "You would rend a country in two, turn brother against brother, just to kill Father and keep me from my throne?"

"Mordred... what..."

"I will not let you finish what you started. I could never harm you... But I will stop you!"

With that he struck out at the half-demon, wounding him viciously on the upper arm. The creature half roared, half howled, as he fell back.

"Emrys!!"

Then it was chaos. Arthur pressed the attack as Anna moved to defend the half-demon. For a moment there was only Anna and Arthur, locked in deadly combat with Emrys unable, and Mordred unwilling, to interfere. The warrior king's blows were heavy and cunning. Their blades rang, and Anna was put to the worse, finding it more and more difficult to bring her sword around to block. For every month's experience she had gained in battles, Arthur had a year.
"I find I have missed you, Anna. I had no idea you were this good in a fight," he said, and he even sounded a little sincere. "Or was this all learned during your recent... escapades?"
"We had nothing, you and I, besides the child you gave me. Gave, and then stole!"
"A pity you had to start a rebellion. How short-sighted I was back then."
But at the end of that brief span, Anna was at her limit. Before she could stop him, Arthur had swept her sword to the side and dealt a death-dealing blow across her ribs.
Mordred gasped. Emrys cried out.
Then they all stared.

Anna had staggered back, but she was still alive, and she was still standing. There was a long slash across her sable clothing, revealing a deep, white gash along her side. There was no blood, and as they watched, the wound slowly reformed itself. She was breathing hard, but she was still ready to fight.

"So that is the power of your new form. I never dreamed you would be this much fun to kill!" The tyrant laughed with anticipation. "Come, have at me. I will cut you to pieces!"
Anna tensed, panting, then sprang forward. "I will end you!!"

Again they fought, but this time, Arthur was unable to build up the same momentum. And the fay sword began to sing. Their blades rang. Only when Arthur took a step backward did Mordred remember himself, and he lashed out at Emrys a second time.

"No!!" Anna immediately rushed to stop him, giving up all advantage she had gained. Arthur yelled in triumph and leaped to strike.

"Excaecatio Lancea!"
The half-demon's spell caused a bright flash, and Arthur and Mordred each were struck by a spearpoint of magical energy. Mordred staggered, hurt, and Arthur grunted, his course altered in midair.
Emrys drew pained breaths, each of his arms extended toward where one the foes had been. Then he fell to his knees and grasped his torso as if he were suddenly starved.
"Emrys!"
"Go! Finish him!"

Fueled of fury, Anna turned on Arthur with a vengeance, advancing blow by blow with unnatural strength. Then the tyrant rallied, and for a moment their blades locked.
"No more! Your life is at an end!"
"My life? The end? My dear Anna." The king's glare was cold. "There is always more." He shoved her back several steps, charged her with his blade held close, ready to run her through.
Just in time Anna planted her feet and desperately parried. The king's sword went wide, but he knocked her off balance as he fell.

Anna turned herself as she was pulled toward the ground. With the singing sword held high, point aimed down, Anna fell on the king. The magic blade pierced through armor, flesh, and finally stone, driving Arthur's life into death like the nail of a coffin.

With morbid slowness as she stood, Anna the fay drew her sword from the new pool of blood, its crimson fount the dead king's heart.

* * * * *
Mordred still refused to give up his father's ways, claiming that all the suffering was her doing. Deeply hurt, Anna made the hard decision to send him into exile, confined to a small island for the rest of his days.

Scarcely had Anna begun to realize the empty seat of power she had created, when the army under their command hailed Anna and Emrys--the Salt and Sight of Britain--the rightful rulers of the land.

Emrys was abashed, standing next to the fay he loved. "Hardly can I find the words," he managed, "but, do you suppose a fay queen and a half-demon like me--"
Anna leaped into him and met his lips with hers.
Arms entwined, lovers joined, Emrys closed his eyes and savored the salty kiss.

Thereafter, the legends of Anna the fay and her faithful seer Emrys spread far and wide, and the image of the White Queen, Anna of the Britons, holding aloft the Singing Sword which could cut through steel and stone, decorated the hearths and inspired the hearts of many a generation to come.
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Gadreille on Sat Jul 14, 2012 2:01 pm

Looking forward to reading all of these entries Smile
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Sunwolf007 on Mon Jul 16, 2012 2:40 pm

Same here! Time for me to get reading!

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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Tartra on Sat Jul 28, 2012 12:14 pm

Very Happy I'm really looking forward to seeing the results. These were great entries. How's the judging coming along?
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Gadreille on Sat Jul 28, 2012 12:39 pm

So far it looks as though no one, mod or otherwise, will volunteer to be a third judge. We may have to suffice with two rather than three, as I had originally hoped. The entries are amazing, but I've yet to score them. We should have it done no later than August 10th.
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Blackrock on Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:45 pm

Ooooh the suspense Excited
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Kalon Ordona II on Sun Jul 29, 2012 8:00 am

Should we start nominating people to be judges? xD
The list of active people would almost suffice for a pool to pick from. ^^
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Gadreille on Sun Jul 29, 2012 10:59 am

Hehe. I don't think that would qualify as volunteering. Though I do hope someone steps up. I can't do it every time.
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Lord Revan on Sun Jul 29, 2012 2:40 pm

If no one else volunteers before August 3rd, I will take the place of the third judge.
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Guest on Sun Jul 29, 2012 2:45 pm

You might as well just take it now, if you're offering. Nobody has stepped up since July 13th(but really, only one person has since June 13th), so I think it's a safe bet that waiting until the 3rd isn't gonna matter much. ^^;

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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Gadreille on Sun Jul 29, 2012 3:45 pm

Agreed.
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Lord Revan on Sun Jul 29, 2012 4:35 pm

Alright. The results have to be posted by the 10th?
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Gadreille on Sun Jul 29, 2012 4:55 pm

Yes sir. Mosey on over to the judging forum so we can share thoughts Smile
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Eternal Phoenix on Sun Jul 29, 2012 5:04 pm

Wait. You can submit and judge? Isn't there a conflict of interest?
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Guest on Sun Jul 29, 2012 5:05 pm

Who are you talking about? Lord Revan didn't submit anything.

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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Gadreille on Sun Jul 29, 2012 5:26 pm

No one is, or is ever, going to judge and write the same contest.
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Eternal Phoenix on Sun Jul 29, 2012 8:05 pm

Oops. My brain sometimes blends separate memories of people or things. This time it did it to Kalon and Revan. Ay. I hate when that happens. Sorry, you guys.
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Sunwolf007 on Sun Jul 29, 2012 8:43 pm

Gadreille wrote:Yes sir. Mosey on over to the judging forum so we can share thoughts Smile
Where is this special forum? I would like to join! Laughing

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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Kalon Ordona II on Mon Jul 30, 2012 2:45 am

No problem, Phoenix. ^_^
There was some touch-and-go during sign-up, so it's understandable to forget who entered. I almost didn't. xD
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Gadreille on Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:00 pm

Finishing up my critiques. Tomorrow, do you guys want them posted, or PMed?

I'd like all the contestants to respond, please.
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Guest on Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:07 pm

You can post mine here, I don't have a problem with that.

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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Blackrock on Fri Aug 10, 2012 3:23 am

Yeah I don't mind mine being posted here either. Just means we can exchange experience and all that, no need to keep it under wraps.
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Eternal Phoenix on Fri Aug 10, 2012 8:20 am

Go right ahead. I've got nothing to hide.
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Notepad Part 1

Post by Gadreille on Fri Aug 10, 2012 9:53 am

First off I'd like to say a couple of things.

Lord Revan had a personal emergency and could not finish judging. I am afraid that there are only two judges this round, which really sucks. I think that with three, averaging the scores would have been fairer. But I didn't want to make you guys wait any longer, so we decided to just stick with two. Hopefully, if/when we do another round, we can have three judges.

Also, thank, thank, THANK you guys for your awesome work. I hope you guys had fun with it. If any of you have ideas for another contest theme, let me know. The whole point of these contests is to let it be member-run; I hope you guys enjoy being a part of it. Now, onto the good stuff!



First place with an average of 84 points: Ysopet!

Second, with average of 80.5 points: Kalon Ordona II!

Third, with average of 74.5 points: Blackrock!

Fourth, with average of 66.5 points: Eternal Phoenix!

Fifth, with average of 59 points: Ten!

Sunwolf's Critiques:

Ysopet
Spoiler:
The Valenzetti Equation/Ysopet

------------------ STORY ------------------

STORYTELLING, 10 points 9


  • “Was it clear to me why the story is taking place?” 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • “Did I like how the story unfolds?” 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • Did the narrative seamlessly identify what was important in the story and put due focus on those things?”
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) ) 3


SETTING, 10 points 9


  • "Did I always have a clear picture in my mind of the surroundings?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is the character integrated with the surroundings?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did everything in the setting serve to further the story?" 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PACING, 10 points 9


  • "Did I want to know what happened next?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the speed of each scene match the intended mood?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did nothing jar my journey through the words?" 1
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


------------------ CHARACTER ------------------

COMMUNICATION, 10 points 8


  • "Does each character's style and frequency of communication match who and what they are?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the characters feel real when they spoke or communicated?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • Is all the communication consistent with the setting?" 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


ACTIONS, 10 points 9


  • "Do each character's strategies and actions match who and what they are?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions help define who and what they are?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions feel plausible and relevant?" 2
    (Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PERSONA, 10 points 8


  • "Do the character's thoughts match their personality?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Are the emotions at believable levels? Not under- or overdone?" 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • "Do the character's thoughts help define their personality?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


------------------ PROSE ------------------

MECHANICS, 10 points 9


  • "Is all the punctuation correct?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is all the spelling correct?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "How seamless or impressive was the writer's usage and style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) ) 2


CLARITY, 10 points 9


  • "Is everything said that needs to be said?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do all the sentences make sense?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Was it easy to incorporate new information as the story progressed?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )2


STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points 8


  • "Did I like the use of any flashbacks, foreshadowing, metaphors, or other literary devices?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did I like the use of any vocabulary words or made-up words?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Does it feel like the author is comfortable in their style?" 2
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


------------------ JUDGE'S CHOICE ------------------

EXTRA 10 points 8

  • "Is there something unusual I want to award points for?"
  • "Is there one or two things that were just so awesome that they deserve extra points?"
  • Was I impressed with creativity or some other display of brilliance?"


(10 pts.) (9 pts.) (8 pts.) (7 pts.) (6 pts.) (5 pts.) (4 pts.) (3 pts.) (3 pts.) (2 pts.) (1 pt.) (0 pts.)

Explain: I am awarding points for the great details of weapons and tactics that form the basis of this piece. I would have awarded the full 10 if it was perfectly executed, which I will go over in my feedback section.




STORY 27/30
STORYTELLING, 10 points 9
SETTING, 10 points 9
PACING, 10 points 9

CHARACTER 25/30
COMMUNICATION, 10 points 8
ACTIONS, 10 points 9
PERSONA, 10 points 8

PROSE 26/30
MECHANICS, 10 points 9
CLARITY, 10 points 9
STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points 8

JUDGE'S CHOICE 8/10
EXTRA 10 points 8


Total Points: 86/100

Feedback:
OVERALL
I am going to limit my comments to an overall critique. I have only a few comments on this story. The biggest one being that there was no real physical description of the characters, except Alexander. The level of research that went into it was almost the right amount. The details in the weapons and the battle line were all correct. The only flaw was that the feint attack mentioned. It was more of a maneuver to pull the Persian line out of formation but the point is it was from Alexander’s extreme right flank, to the right of the Hetairoi, making the right wing of the wedge. In the story it was to the left which is inaccurate. There also needed to be more foreshadowing to the twist in the story, where Alexander dies. I would recommend something referencing his training on the variety of weapons he uses and ancient Greek since he is speaking it. That way it sounds like he is trying hard and with the part where he is focusing on Alexander. Another thing is that the surname ‘the great’ comes from his military wins and at this time he hasn’t won that many battles yet. He would be known as Alexander III of Macedon. All of the deductions came from those few points in a form or another. I would say that this needs a little revision before you should send it off somewhere for publishing.

Kalon Ordona II
Spoiler:
The Salt of the Nymph/Kalon Ordona II

------------------ STORY ------------------

STORYTELLING, 10 points 9


  • “Was it clear to me why the story is taking place?” 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • “Did I like how the story unfolds?” 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • Did the narrative seamlessly identify what was important in the story and put due focus on those things?” 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


SETTING, 10 points 9


  • "Did I always have a clear picture in my mind of the surroundings?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is the character integrated with the surroundings?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did everything in the setting serve to further the story?" 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PACING, 10 points 9


  • "Did I want to know what happened next?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the speed of each scene match the intended mood?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did nothing jar my journey through the words?" 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


------------------ CHARACTER ------------------

COMMUNICATION, 10 points 9


  • "Does each character's style and frequency of communication match who and what they are?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the characters feel real when they spoke or communicated?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • Is all the communication consistent with the setting?" 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


ACTIONS, 10 points 8


  • "Do each character's strategies and actions match who and what they are?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions help define who and what they are?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions feel plausible and relevant?" 2
    (Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PERSONA, 10 points 8


  • "Do the character's thoughts match their personality?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Are the emotions at believable levels? Not under- or overdone?" 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • "Do the character's thoughts help define their personality?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


------------------ PROSE ------------------

MECHANICS, 10 points 9


  • "Is all the punctuation correct?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is all the spelling correct?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "How seamless or impressive was the writer's usage and style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) ) 1


CLARITY, 10 points 9


  • "Is everything said that needs to be said?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do all the sentences make sense?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Was it easy to incorporate new information as the story progressed?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) ) 2


STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points 7


  • "Did I like the use of any flashbacks, foreshadowing, metaphors, or other literary devices?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did I like the use of any vocabulary words or made-up words?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Does it feel like the author is comfortable in their style?" 2
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


------------------ JUDGE'S CHOICE ------------------

EXTRA 10 points 8

  • "Is there something unusual I want to award points for?"
  • "Is there one or two things that were just so awesome that they deserve extra points?"
  • Was I impressed with creativity or some other display of brilliance?"


(10 pts.) (9 pts.) (8 pts.) (7 pts.) (6 pts.) (5 pts.) (4 pts.) (3 pts.) (3 pts.) (2 pts.) (1 pt.) (0 pts.)

Explain: The visual imagery was outstanding and the idea of mixing fantasy in with Middle Ages England Mythology was a cool idea that worked very well.




STORY 27/30
STORYTELLING, 10 points 9
SETTING, 10 points 9
PACING, 10 points 9

CHARACTER 25/30
COMMUNICATION, 10 points 9
ACTIONS, 10 points 8
PERSONA, 10 points 8

PROSE 25/30
MECHANICS, 10 points 9
CLARITY, 10 points 9
STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points 7

JUDGE'S CHOICE 8/10
EXTRA 10 points 8
-1 point for over the word limit
Total Points: 84/100

Feedback:
OVERALL
I am going to limit my comments to an overall critique. I have only a few comments on this story. The decision of Emrys to just go find the source of the singing sword bugged me. He wakes up and instead of going straight after Arthur he detours to find the Lady of the Lake. Just a little elaboration on that point would go a long way. Also the use of magic at the end bugged me because of the fact the character hadn’t used it earlier to set up the fact he could use magic. I know earlier it is referenced he created a curse but to me cursing and magic are two separate things, kinda like white mages and black mages in Final Fantasy. The story itself was great but I didn’t detect any use of foreshadowing or other literary devices so I had to mark down on that. Overall I was really impressed with the visual imagery and character descriptions. It was a really great piece.


Blackrock
Spoiler:
Another Holy War/Blackrock

------------------ STORY ------------------

STORYTELLING, 10 points 7


  • “Was it clear to me why the story is taking place?” 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • “Did I like how the story unfolds?” 1
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • Did the narrative seamlessly identify what was important in the story and put due focus on those things?” 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


SETTING, 10 points 6


  • "Did I always have a clear picture in my mind of the surroundings?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is the character integrated with the surroundings?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did everything in the setting serve to further the story?" 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PACING, 10 points 7


  • "Did I want to know what happened next?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the speed of each scene match the intended mood?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did nothing jar my journey through the words?" 1
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


------------------ CHARACTER ------------------

COMMUNICATION, 10 points 8


  • "Does each character's style and frequency of communication match who and what they are?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the characters feel real when they spoke or communicated?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • Is all the communication consistent with the setting?" 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


ACTIONS, 10 points 9


  • "Do each character's strategies and actions match who and what they are?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions help define who and what they are?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions feel plausible and relevant?" 2
    (Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PERSONA, 10 points 7


  • "Do the character's thoughts match their personality?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Are the emotions at believable levels? Not under- or overdone?" 1
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • "Do the character's thoughts help define their personality?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


------------------ PROSE ------------------

MECHANICS, 10 points 8


  • "Is all the punctuation correct?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is all the spelling correct?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "How seamless or impressive was the writer's usage and style?" 2
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


CLARITY, 10 points 8


  • "Is everything said that needs to be said?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do all the sentences make sense?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Was it easy to incorporate new information as the story progressed?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )2


STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points 8


  • "Did I like the use of any flashbacks, foreshadowing, metaphors, or other literary devices?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did I like the use of any vocabulary words or made-up words?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Does it feel like the author is comfortable in their style?" 2
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


------------------ JUDGE'S CHOICE ------------------

EXTRA 10 points 3

  • "Is there something unusual I want to award points for?"
  • "Is there one or two things that were just so awesome that they deserve extra points?"
  • Was I impressed with creativity or some other display of brilliance?"


(10 pts.) (9 pts.) (8 pts.) (7 pts.) (6 pts.) (5 pts.) (4 pts.) (3 pts.) (3 pts.) (2 pts.) (1 pt.) (0 pts.)

Explain: I like the idea behind this story and dealing with complex ideas like religion in a short format is hard so I am awarding a few points for trying.




STORY 20/30
STORYTELLING, 10 points 7
SETTING, 10 points 6
PACING, 10 points 7

CHARACTER 24/30
COMMUNICATION, 10 points 8
ACTIONS, 10 points 9
PERSONA, 10 points 7

PROSE 24/30
MECHANICS, 10 points 8
CLARITY, 10 points 8
STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points 8

JUDGE'S CHOICE 3/10
EXTRA 10 points 3
-1 point for over the word limit
Total Points: 70/100

Feedback:
STORY 20/30
Overall I liked the idea of the story but I felt that the setting descriptions could use a little work. Remember that this is a world that is almost a thousand years ago and even things like spears need to be described because it has changed vastly since then. Another thing you have to research is the types of weapons that were used in the fourth crusade so you can describe them to the reader (who wont know the difference between a 4th crusade weapon and a 9th crusade weapon). Plus the descriptions of the different cities and battles I felt was a bit lackluster. A bit of revision will clean that right up. The ending felt a bit rushed so I marked down a little for that. I felt as if I was being led to the conclusion instead of figuring it out. Readers like to figure things out about characters/events/ideas in a story to make them feel smart. That issue can be fixed but I will get to that in the Character section.

CHARACTER 24/30
Overall the two characters were good. It bothers me that there is no physical description of Theodric, but in this piece it sort of works because, in my mind anyway, he represents man talking to god and therefore doesn’t need a physical description. Since I felt this was the case I didn’t mark down for that. The one issue that I mentioned before is that the god/old man character doesn’t feel as if he is driving the questions. Instead of having the character willingly remember the events of the 3rd and 4th crusade have the god/old man’s questions force him to remember. During the first part of the story the god/old man character doesn’t speak that much. Just having him ask driving questions about faith that forces Theodric to recall the dark memories would make the story a lot better and improve the god/old man character.

PROSE 24/30
I don’t have much to discuss here. There are a handful of spelling errors/grammar mistakes which I had to account for but overall a good run through with revision will fix that.

OVERALL
I really liked this idea in a short story. Plus the historical setting really adds to the whole human experience because the issue of faith has been around for as long as humans could write. Blackrock did a great job of pulling in historical facts to support his story. Hopefully the issues I pointed out will get fixed to enhance the piece and I would really like to see you keep working on it.

Eternal Phoenix
Spoiler:
Frontier Patrol: Mission to Rector Five/Eternal Phoenix

------------------ STORY ------------------

STORYTELLING, 10 points 8


  • “Was it clear to me why the story is taking place?” 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • “Did I like how the story unfolds?” 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • Did the narrative seamlessly identify what was important in the story and put due focus on those things?” 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


SETTING, 10 points 7


  • "Did I always have a clear picture in my mind of the surroundings?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is the character integrated with the surroundings?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did everything in the setting serve to further the story?" 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PACING, 10 points 6


  • "Did I want to know what happened next?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the speed of each scene match the intended mood?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did nothing jar my journey through the words?" 1
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


------------------ CHARACTER ------------------

COMMUNICATION, 10 points7


  • "Does each character's style and frequency of communication match who and what they are?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the characters feel real when they spoke or communicated?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • Is all the communication consistent with the setting?" 2
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


ACTIONS, 10 points 8


  • "Do each character's strategies and actions match who and what they are?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions help define who and what they are?"3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions feel plausible and relevant?" 2
    (Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PERSONA, 10 points 6


  • "Do the character's thoughts match their personality?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Are the emotions at believable levels? Not under- or overdone?" 1
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • "Do the character's thoughts help define their personality?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


------------------ PROSE ------------------

MECHANICS, 10 points 6


  • "Is all the punctuation correct?" 1
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is all the spelling correct?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "How seamless or impressive was the writer's usage and style?" 1
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


CLARITY, 10 points 6


  • "Is everything said that needs to be said?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do all the sentences make sense?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Was it easy to incorporate new information as the story progressed?" 1
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points 6


  • "Did I like the use of any flashbacks, foreshadowing, metaphors, or other literary devices?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did I like the use of any vocabulary words or made-up words?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Does it feel like the author is comfortable in their style?" 1
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


------------------ JUDGE'S CHOICE ------------------

EXTRA 10 points 0

  • "Is there something unusual I want to award points for?"
  • "Is there one or two things that were just so awesome that they deserve extra points?"
  • Was I impressed with creativity or some other display of brilliance?"


(10 pts.) (9 pts.) (8 pts.) (7 pts.) (6 pts.) (5 pts.) (4 pts.) (3 pts.) (3 pts.) (2 pts.) (1 pt.) (0 pts.)

Explain:




STORY 21/30
STORYTELLING, 10 points 8
SETTING, 10 points 7
PACING, 10 points 6

CHARACTER 21/30
COMMUNICATION, 10 points 7
ACTIONS, 10 points 8
PERSONA, 10 points 6

PROSE 18/30
MECHANICS, 10 points 6
CLARITY, 10 points 6
STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points 6

JUDGE'S CHOICE 0/10
EXTRA 10 points 0
-1 point for over the word limit
Total Points: 59/100

Feedback:
STORY 21/30
The story idea itself sounded like a good idea but a few things came out wrong. The setting felt somewhat neglected. I get that it’s a space ship but is it cramped or spacious? We only see a few rooms and there are only a few details about them. Some of the sentence structures made me trip up my reading a little bit so I marked down for that. Plus, currently medical personal are incorporated in the military so I feel that having the doctor be a civilian is a mistake, otherwise the ranking system worked.

CHARACTER 21/30
The characters felt as if they were there just move the story along and that there wasn’t much unique about them. Like the way the commander knew how to fix everything felt a little unbelievable. Also, the rest of the crew got described but the Commander did not, so I had to mark down for that. I feel that this is because of the word limit. It felt a lot like a version of Star Trek: Next Generation, which is good but nothing made the characters stand out to me so I had to mark down for that.

PROSE 18/30
As noted before there were a few sentences that I tried to read and was wondering what EP was trying to say. Revision will take care of that. The style felt that it was way too limited by the word limit for the contest. I would love to see this modified to a longer story to really build on a few plot elements like space archeology, space navy, and life on other planets. Honestly the reason this section suffered the most in grading is because EP tried to do too much with too little space. With good revision and expansion this piece will do a lot better.

OVERALL
Because this piece didn’t fit the theme I didn’t award any extra points (if it had fit the theme I would have awarded 3 for ethnic diversity on the ship and trying to tackle the question of are we alone in the galaxy). I like this piece but I would recommend watching a few episodes of Star Trek: Next Generation to get a few ideas of how some of the space themes look. This story is a great piece of science fiction of which would like to see worked on (and with more word room) for better explanations of themes and setting.

Ten
Spoiler:
The Chameleon/Ten

------------------ STORY ------------------

STORYTELLING, 10 points 6


  • “Was it clear to me why the story is taking place?” 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • “Did I like how the story unfolds?” 1
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • Did the narrative seamlessly identify what was important in the story and put due focus on those things?” 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


SETTING, 10 points 6


  • "Did I always have a clear picture in my mind of the surroundings?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is the character integrated with the surroundings?" 1
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did everything in the setting serve to further the story?" 1
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PACING, 10 points 4


  • "Did I want to know what happened next?" 1
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the speed of each scene match the intended mood?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did nothing jar my journey through the words?" 0
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


------------------ CHARACTER ------------------

COMMUNICATION, 10 points 5


  • "Does each character's style and frequency of communication match who and what they are?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the characters feel real when they spoke or communicated?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • Is all the communication consistent with the setting?" 1
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


ACTIONS, 10 points 4


  • "Do each character's strategies and actions match who and what they are?" 1
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions help define who and what they are?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions feel plausible and relevant?" 1
    (Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PERSONA, 10 points 4


  • "Do the character's thoughts match their personality?" 1
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Are the emotions at believable levels? Not under- or overdone?" 1
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • "Do the character's thoughts help define their personality?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


------------------ PROSE ------------------

MECHANICS, 10 points 7


  • "Is all the punctuation correct?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is all the spelling correct?" 4
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "How seamless or impressive was the writer's usage and style?" 1
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


CLARITY, 10 points 2


  • "Is everything said that needs to be said?" 0
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do all the sentences make sense?" 1
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Was it easy to incorporate new information as the story progressed?" 1
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points 5


  • "Did I like the use of any flashbacks, foreshadowing, metaphors, or other literary devices?" 2
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did I like the use of any vocabulary words or made-up words?" 3
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Does it feel like the author is comfortable in their style?" 1
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


------------------ JUDGE'S CHOICE ------------------

EXTRA 10 points 10

  • "Is there something unusual I want to award points for?"
  • "Is there one or two things that were just so awesome that they deserve extra points?"
  • Was I impressed with creativity or some other display of brilliance?"


(10 pts.) (9 pts.) (8 pts.) (7 pts.) (6 pts.) (5 pts.) (4 pts.) (3 pts.) (3 pts.) (2 pts.) (1 pt.) (0 pts.)

Explain: First off writing a main character from a different gender is difficult so I give Ten props and points for that. Also, flipping the villain at the end of the story is a bold way to try and write so I gave points for that.




STORY16/30
STORYTELLING, 10 points 6
SETTING, 10 points 6
PACING, 10 points 4

CHARACTER 13/30
COMMUNICATION, 10 points 5
ACTIONS, 10 points 4
PERSONA, 10 points 4

PROSE 14/30
MECHANICS, 10 points 7
CLARITY, 10 points 2
STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points 5

JUDGE'S CHOICE 10/10
EXTRA 10 points 10
-3 points for over the word limit
Total Points: 50/100

Feedback:
STORY16/30
The story had good structure, good scene locations and good events planned but the execution of these three story elements was not pulled off exceedingly well. The whole thing felt a bit on the rushed side. With some revision this would be an excellent story. It bothered me that no specific city was mentioned but I didn’t grade down for that (for some reason it always bugs me). The scene locations were good but I felt that the description of them was lacking and rushed. I guarantee most of us have never been in a speakeasy so a description of it would go a long way. Don’t assume it looks like a regular bar from today because it doesn’t. One way around the prohibition act was giving the customer a complementary drink with an expensive meal, while another way was to use alcohol for ‘medicinal’ purposes. Consumption of alcohol was not illegal but the sale it was. A little research on contemporary speakeasies would have gone a long way.

CHARACTER 13/30
The biggest problem I have with the characters is Stephanie’s choice to kill Eric at the end of the story. This felt it lacked an explanation. The second biggest problem I have with this piece is the main character, Jason, is never given a physical description. If the Frenchman was involved in the plan to murder Eric then he wouldn’t just tell some reporter about his involvement with Eric. I would suggest that Jason goes investigating the disappearances of women and then talks to the Frenchmen about the seemingly closed case that a newspaper article could forcibly reopen with public support. Another problem is if Jason knew that something horrible was going to happen why did he run down the sidewalk instead of call a cab? Also, the use of 20’s lingo was not prevalent enough.

PROSE 14/30
The story had overall good mechanics but a few sentence structures just sounded weird to me so I had to mark down on that. The real problem with the story is there isn’t a clear reason why Eric needed to be killed at the end. 2nd and 3rd hand accounts of suspicions are not enough for the reader to completely understand why he had to be killed. If you had a smoking gun on one of the disappearances that resulted in a death then I could see Stephanie killing Eric in a preempted self-defense motivation. Like I mentioned before there wasn’t enough 20’s lingo for my taste. Also a lot of the scenes felt ‘told’ rather than ‘shown’. I am guessing that it was a result of the word limit but I had to remove some points because an audience is always looking to be shown something than told it.

OVERALL
I liked the way the story was set up but because of some of the execution of the story elements I didn’t enjoy it as much as I wanted to. With revision this would make an excellent short story. Seriously, who doesn’t like a story involving the prohibition era? Keep working on this piece because it has really good bones, you just need to flesh it out a bit with revision Ten.



Last edited by Gadreille on Fri Aug 10, 2012 9:54 am; edited 1 time in total
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Notepad Part 2

Post by Gadreille on Fri Aug 10, 2012 9:53 am

Gadreille's Critiques:

Ysopet
Spoiler:
The Valenzetti Equation/Ysopet wrote:

------------------ STORY ------------------

STORYTELLING, 10 points


  • “Was it clear to me why the story is taking place?”
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • “Did I like how the story unfolds?”
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • Did the narrative seamlessly identify what was important in the story and put due focus on those things?”
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


SETTING, 10 points


  • "Did I always have a clear picture in my mind of the surroundings?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is the character integrated with the surroundings?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did everything in the setting serve to further the story?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PACING, 10 points


  • "Did I want to know what happened next?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the speed of each scene match the intended mood?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did nothing jar my journey through the words?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


------------------ CHARACTER ------------------

COMMUNICATION, 10 points


  • "Does each character's style and frequency of communication match who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the characters feel real when they spoke or communicated?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • Is all the communication consistent with the setting?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


ACTIONS, 10 points


  • "Do each character's strategies and actions match who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions help define who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions feel plausible and relevant?"
    (Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PERSONA, 10 points


  • "Do the character's thoughts match their personality?"
    Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Are the emotions at believable levels? Not under- or overdone?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • "Do the character's thoughts help define their personality?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


------------------ PROSE ------------------

MECHANICS, 10 points


  • "Is all the punctuation correct?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is all the spelling correct?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "How seamless or impressive was the writer's usage and style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


CLARITY, 10 points


  • "Is everything said that needs to be said?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2) Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do all the sentences make sense?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Was it easy to incorporate new information as the story progressed?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points


  • "Did I like the use of any flashbacks, foreshadowing, metaphors, or other literary devices?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did I like the use of any vocabulary words or made-up words?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Does it feel like the author is comfortable in their style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


------------------ JUDGE'S CHOICE ------------------

EXTRA 10 points

  • "Is there something unusual I want to award points for?"
  • "Is there one or two things that were just so awesome that they deserve extra points?"
  • Was I impressed with creativity or some other display of brilliance?"


(10 pts.) (9 pts.) (8 pts.) (7 pts.) (6 pts.) (5 pts.) (4 pts.) (3 pts.) (2 pts.) (1 pt.) (0 pts.)

Explain:

This entry was the only entry that did not go over the limit. It also had the most historical reference. Two points deducted for lack of explanation throughout the piece, as well as limited dialogue at the end.




Total Points: 82/100

Feedback:
This piece flowed very well. I was instantly drawn in, and even though I know NOTHING about the time of Alexander the Great, I felt as though I could keep up with what was going on. I liked how period terms were utilized while still using physical description, so that I didn't have to guess as to what the foreign word meant.

Even though I understand the reference at the end of it, I still felt as though it could have been revealed better. There weren't enough obvious hints throughout the piece to warn the person that something drastic was going to happen. Also, I craved a response from the people who he was explaining this very strange "equation" to. They just sat there, like mannequins. I feel like these men who the main character had lived among deserved at least a bit of dialogue.

I would love to see the next chapter of this story.

Blackrock
Spoiler:
Another Holy War/Blackrock wrote:

------------------ STORY ------------------

STORYTELLING, 10 points


  • “Was it clear to me why the story is taking place?”
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • “Did I like how the story unfolds?”
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • Did the narrative seamlessly identify what was important in the story and put due focus on those things?”
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


SETTING, 10 points


  • "Did I always have a clear picture in my mind of the surroundings?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is the character integrated with the surroundings?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did everything in the setting serve to further the story?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PACING, 10 points


  • "Did I want to know what happened next?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the speed of each scene match the intended mood?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did nothing jar my journey through the words?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


------------------ CHARACTER ------------------

COMMUNICATION, 10 points


  • "Does each character's style and frequency of communication match who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the characters feel real when they spoke or communicated?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • Is all the communication consistent with the setting?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


ACTIONS, 10 points


  • "Do each character's strategies and actions match who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions help define who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions feel plausible and relevant?"
    (Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PERSONA, 10 points


  • "Do the character's thoughts match their personality?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Are the emotions at believable levels? Not under- or overdone?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • "Do the character's thoughts help define their personality?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


------------------ PROSE ------------------

MECHANICS, 10 points


  • "Is all the punctuation correct?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is all the spelling correct?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "How seamless or impressive was the writer's usage and style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


CLARITY, 10 points


  • "Is everything said that needs to be said?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do all the sentences make sense?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Was it easy to incorporate new information as the story progressed?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points


  • "Did I like the use of any flashbacks, foreshadowing, metaphors, or other literary devices?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did I like the use of any vocabulary words or made-up words?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Does it feel like the author is comfortable in their style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


------------------ JUDGE'S CHOICE ------------------

EXTRA 10 points

  • "Is there something unusual I want to award points for?"
  • "Is there one or two things that were just so awesome that they deserve extra points?"
  • Was I impressed with creativity or some other display of brilliance?"


(10 pts.) (9 pts.) (8 pts.) (7 pts.) (6 pts.) (5 pts.) (4 pts.) (3 pts.) (2 pts.) (1 pt.) (0 pts.)

Explain:

Seven points awarded for amazing use of flashbacks, as well as a lot of historical detail. One point was deducted for slightly going over the word limit. Another two points were deducted for grammar structure as well as emotional description.




Total Points: 79/100

Feedback:

This piece was very, very emotional. I watched this man's life flash before his eyes, and I wanted so badly for something - anything - to change so that poor fellow could walk away from this story. It was a very unique way to display a somewhat familiar period of time. I felt like I was reading a journal of someone who was actually there.

There were only two issues with this piece. One was sentence structure and grammar, something that I happen to know the author is familiar with dealing with. There wasn't much wrong, but it was enough to have points deducted. The second issue was that it was, like three other contestants, over the word limit. I feel that if both these issues were addressed, this story would have very easily won first place. I feel like this author got second place only on a technicality.

I have to say it again, Amazing. Amazing work!

Kalon Ordona II
Spoiler:
The Salt of the Nymph/Kalon Ordona II wrote:

------------------ STORY ------------------

STORYTELLING, 10 points


  • “Was it clear to me why the story is taking place?”
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • “Did I like how the story unfolds?”
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • Did the narrative seamlessly identify what was important in the story and put due focus on those things?”
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


SETTING, 10 points


  • "Did I always have a clear picture in my mind of the surroundings?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is the character integrated with the surroundings?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did everything in the setting serve to further the story?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PACING, 10 points


  • "Did I want to know what happened next?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the speed of each scene match the intended mood?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did nothing jar my journey through the words?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


------------------ CHARACTER ------------------

COMMUNICATION, 10 points


  • "Does each character's style and frequency of communication match who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the characters feel real when they spoke or communicated?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • Is all the communication consistent with the setting?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


ACTIONS, 10 points


  • "Do each character's strategies and actions match who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions help define who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions feel plausible and relevant?"
    (Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PERSONA, 10 points


  • "Do the character's thoughts match their personality?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Are the emotions at believable levels? Not under- or overdone?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • "Do the character's thoughts help define their personality?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


------------------ PROSE ------------------

MECHANICS, 10 points


  • "Is all the punctuation correct?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is all the spelling correct?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "How seamless or impressive was the writer's usage and style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


CLARITY, 10 points


  • "Is everything said that needs to be said?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do all the sentences make sense?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Was it easy to incorporate new information as the story progressed?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points


  • "Did I like the use of any flashbacks, foreshadowing, metaphors, or other literary devices?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did I like the use of any vocabulary words or made-up words?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Does it feel like the author is comfortable in their style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


------------------ JUDGE'S CHOICE ------------------

EXTRA 10 points

  • "Is there something unusual I want to award points for?"
  • "Is there one or two things that were just so awesome that they deserve extra points?"
  • Was I impressed with creativity or some other display of brilliance?"


(10 pts.) (9 pts.) (8 pts.) (7 pts.) (6 pts.) (5 pts.) (4 pts.) (3 pts.) (2 pts.) (1 pt.) (0 pts.)

Explain:

Six points for super cool King Arthur twist, and interesting use of language. Reminded me very much of fantasy writers of old! Minus one point for going slightly over the word limit. Minus three points for general lack in setting, concrete historical ties, and emotional interaction.




Total Points: 77/100

Feedback:

This piece was written very well. It reminded me of Lord Dunsany's work. It was very descriptive, and I really enjoyed following along with the main character as he experienced different settings and interacted with different people. I liked the plotline as well, though sometimes I had trouble understanding why the characters did what they did.

It wasn't quite as historical as a couple of the other works, and it did go over the world limit. However, my biggest issue with this story was that the characters seemed very flat and unreal. I didn't understand their actions or modes of thinking. I didn't quite understand anything about them. I don't want to call the characters weak, but they were definitely distant. It is hard for me to get into a story without attaching myself to the main characters. I know this seems to contradict what I said above. Basically, I attached to the descriptions of what happened to these characters, rather than attaching to the personalities of the characters and thus, following them through their actions.

I think that, with a little bit of fine tuning on the development of the characters of this piece, it would be perfect.

This story was intriguing. I was engrossed with the narrorator's s

Eternal Phoenix
Spoiler:
Frontier Patrol/Eternal Phoenix wrote:

------------------ STORY ------------------

STORYTELLING, 10 points


  • “Was it clear to me why the story is taking place?”
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • “Did I like how the story unfolds?”
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • Did the narrative seamlessly identify what was important in the story and put due focus on those things?”
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


SETTING, 10 points


  • "Did I always have a clear picture in my mind of the surroundings?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is the character integrated with the surroundings?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did everything in the setting serve to further the story?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PACING, 10 points


  • "Did I want to know what happened next?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the speed of each scene match the intended mood?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did nothing jar my journey through the words?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


------------------ CHARACTER ------------------

COMMUNICATION, 10 points


  • "Does each character's style and frequency of communication match who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the characters feel real when they spoke or communicated?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • Is all the communication consistent with the setting?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


ACTIONS, 10 points


  • "Do each character's strategies and actions match who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions help define who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions feel plausible and relevant?"
    (Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PERSONA, 10 points


  • "Do the character's thoughts match their personality?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Are the emotions at believable levels? Not under- or overdone?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • "Do the character's thoughts help define their personality?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


------------------ PROSE ------------------

MECHANICS, 10 points


  • "Is all the punctuation correct?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is all the spelling correct?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "How seamless or impressive was the writer's usage and style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


CLARITY, 10 points


  • "Is everything said that needs to be said?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do all the sentences make sense?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Was it easy to incorporate new information as the story progressed?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points


  • "Did I like the use of any flashbacks, foreshadowing, metaphors, or other literary devices?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did I like the use of any vocabulary words or made-up words?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Does it feel like the author is comfortable in their style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


------------------ JUDGE'S CHOICE ------------------

EXTRA 10 points

  • "Is there something unusual I want to award points for?"
  • "Is there one or two things that were just so awesome that they deserve extra points?"
  • Was I impressed with creativity or some other display of brilliance?"


(10 pts.) (9 pts.) (8 pts.) (7 pts.) (6 pts.) (5 pts.) (4 pts.) (3 pts.) (2 pts.) (1 pt.) (0 pts.)

Explain:
Five points were awarded for the super awesome plot and communication between characters. The story was quite riveting! Four points were deducted for extremely limited use of history. One point was further deducted for going slightly over the limit.



Total Points: 74/100

Feedback:

Ok, so the archaeologist in me was fist-pumping through this entire story. I was so excited to see a site being used, and even the structure of the site, and the people who inhabited it, were spot on! I felt that, even though I was previously on a spaceship, I fell right into one of my field classes.

Even though there wasn't much going on in the beginning, I really wanted to stick around to find out what happened. The author did a great job holding my interest, but it did take a long time to reach any strong plot points. I also enjoyed following along with the characters, even though I feel like we didn't get to delve very deep into any of them. The only time I really felt emotion was at the very end, but even then everyone seemed....too collected for what was going on.

This piece was also over the word limit, by quite a bit. Beyond this, I felt that this piece fit the least amount with the theme. I didn't see much history, though I felt as though there were something historical at that archaeological site. I just wanted to know more. I think that, with some revisitation, the author could accomplish that.


Ten
Spoiler:
The Chameleon/Ten wrote:

------------------ STORY ------------------

STORYTELLING, 10 points


  • “Was it clear to me why the story is taking place?”
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • “Did I like how the story unfolds?”
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • Did the narrative seamlessly identify what was important in the story and put due focus on those things?”
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


SETTING, 10 points


  • "Did I always have a clear picture in my mind of the surroundings?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is the character integrated with the surroundings?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did everything in the setting serve to further the story?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PACING, 10 points


  • "Did I want to know what happened next?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the speed of each scene match the intended mood?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did nothing jar my journey through the words?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


------------------ CHARACTER ------------------

COMMUNICATION, 10 points


  • "Does each character's style and frequency of communication match who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did the characters feel real when they spoke or communicated?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • Is all the communication consistent with the setting?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


ACTIONS, 10 points


  • "Do each character's strategies and actions match who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions help define who and what they are?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do each character's actions feel plausible and relevant?"
    (Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )


PERSONA, 10 points


  • "Do the character's thoughts match their personality?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Are the emotions at believable levels? Not under- or overdone?"
    ( Yes (2), Somewhat (1), No (0) )
  • "Do the character's thoughts help define their personality?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )


------------------ PROSE ------------------

MECHANICS, 10 points


  • "Is all the punctuation correct?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Is all the spelling correct?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "How seamless or impressive was the writer's usage and style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


CLARITY, 10 points


  • "Is everything said that needs to be said?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Do all the sentences make sense?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Was it easy to incorporate new information as the story progressed?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


STYLE AND FLAIR, 10 points


  • "Did I like the use of any flashbacks, foreshadowing, metaphors, or other literary devices?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Did I like the use of any vocabulary words or made-up words?"
    ( Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Neutral (2), Disagree (1), Strongly Disagree (0) )
  • "Does it feel like the author is comfortable in their style?"
    ( Very (2), Somewhat (1), Not at all (0) )


------------------ JUDGE'S CHOICE ------------------

EXTRA 10 points

  • "Is there something unusual I want to award points for?"
  • "Is there one or two things that were just so awesome that they deserve extra points?"
  • Was I impressed with creativity or some other display of brilliance?"


(10 pts.) (9 pts.) (8 pts.) (7 pts.) (6 pts.) (5 pts.) (4 pts.) (3 pts.) (2 pts.) (1 pt.) (0 pts.)

Explain:
Three points granted for excellent use of setting as well as superb dialogue!
Five Points were deducted for being the farthest over the word limit. Two points deducted for weak use of history (the general setting was spot on, but I would have liked one or two historical references to the time period). One more point was deducted for the very confusing ending.




Total Points: 68/100

Feedback:

This story was intriguing. I was engrossed with the narrator’s seamless description of the happenings of the story. I can tell that the author was very comfortable with the setting that was chosen, and I liked that. The dialogue flowed very well, something not all authors can accomplish. It was almost as if I were listening to these characters speak. With the exception of a couple of words incorrectly spelled/used and a few sentences that were not structured well, the language was spot on.

Unfortunately, I feel as though I hadn’t a clue what happened at the end. I re-read it several times, asked others to read it, and got the same response. I feel as though the author is alluding to something and I am too dense to figure out what it is. At first, that made me feel like a failure as a judge. But, if a thought can’t be communicated, that’s on the author as well. I have a feeling this occurred because of the author’s attempt to shorten the piece.

That said, this was the longest entry, almost doubling the word count limit. This had to be taken into consideration, as this author had twice the amount of material in which to convey the story. I feel like this wasn’t taken advantage of in terms of getting the plot points out. The dialogue, setting, and descriptions were definitely covered though!

This was definitely a period piece, but as stated above I wish that there had been more references to an actual period of time. Even though the setting was vivid, the exact place and time that the story took place was, as far as I can tell, indiscernible.

I think that, after adding some clarification to the piece, it will be absolutely amazing.




Again, guys, you all did great. I loved reading your work, and you really are some of the best writers I've ever known. If any of you decide to undertake a revision, please send it to me! I'm sure sunwolf feels the same way!
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Guest on Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:25 am

Thank you so much! I blame a lot of the story's failure on the word limit because I did feel like I had to squeeze and condense everything down and cut out a lot, but it was my fault for being too ambitious for this contest. I should have gone for something more suitable to the contest. Also, I should have done a bit more research on my time period. Thank you so much for the critiques! This was a lot of fun!

Congratulations to Ysopet and everyone else! I definitely feel like his story deserved the points and everyone did really great with this.

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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Gadreille on Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:41 am

Hey, ambitious is good! Smile I do also blame the word limit. Perhaps the next set of judges would be willing to consider taking on a higher word limit.
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Blackrock on Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:51 am

A big congratulations to Ysopet for his victory! Bow 2

I have to say, without offending anyone here, as soon as I read his entry I nodded and told myself "this one's going to be it". Everything flowed perfectly and the only disappointing part in it was that it was too damn short! This definitely deserves some form of continuation, if you find the time for it.

Of course, I enjoyed the other entries greatly as well - it was a stiff competition, so a deep bow from me for the work you guys and gals put in. Let's not forget our awesome judges who took the time to sift through it all and mark it, in itself that's sometimes more difficult than actually writing the piece. Respects.

On my own entry, I'll also blame the word limit - the scope of the story shifted slightly as I started writing and in the end I was forced to cut away quite a few descriptive chunks (such as weapons and clothing, as well as physical appearances). Try as I might, I couldn't figure out a way to avoid making it feel rushed towards the end, short of re-writing everything. That's not to say I'm against word limits, quite the contrary - I think they provide a very interesting challenge. Sometimes writers fall prey to writing a lot, but saying little...a word limit puts a stop to that and forces you to chose your words carefully. That's where true skill comes into play Smile

All in all, I'm very happy with this contest, it reminds me why I keep logging in - to read quality writings. Thanks again to all who participated and those who judged, you all did a wonderful job.

Now, when will the next contest be? Wink
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Notepad Re: FOG Writing Contest 6/13/12 *WINNER*

Post by Gadreille on Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:58 am

Thank you blackrock, that was very thoughtful. I also agree that staying within a word limit is very challenging. It is a different sort of challenge than what we face in role playing. It makes the contest entries quite unique in comparison to our collaborative in character efforts.

The next contest can start whenever we find one moderator and two non moderator judges. Sunwolf volunteered again, but if others are interested please speak up. Once we have our judges, they can decide on a theme and announce!
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