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Fallujah
September 1st, 2009, 12:03 PM
In my English calss we had to write about ghosts for bellwork, one option was a short story, which I did. So i ended up editing it, addiing little things, and I wanted to see how people like it. I may end up making this into a longer story with more plot. As of now, it's just a story with a kinda creepy mood. So here it is: my story that is untitled:

He was scared, cold, and alone. Those were the only thoughts running through his mind. He looked around the small, dusted room, finding an old bed, dresser, a window, and a door which he was facing. He turned to the old, white window to his right, and began to walk over to it. As he walked towards the old window he noticed no light shone from its opaque glass. No sunlight, moonlight, streets, just inky blackness. When he reached the window, he attempted to open it, but to no avail. This old, shuttered window was painted shut, but with obvious signs of rust forming along its hinges. Slightly frustrated and disappointed, he returned to the door at the other side of the room. He slowly opened the old wooden door, only to find a dark, empty hallway. From what he could see, this corridor only led to a case of stairs, and where these led to, he did not know. As he passed through the hallway, he found several doors, similar to the door he opened, but none of these would open. As he reached the staircase, he began to hear music notes, from a piano. Intrigued, he began to ascend the stairs. Part of the way down, he saw the piano from where the notes came from. It was a large, white grand piano in the middle of the dark room, practically lighting the room itself. As he further looked, he saw one person sitting at the piano. He was wearing a straight, white suit, and had short, light brown hair, similar to that of his own. As he slowly walked forward, the person did not move. As he finally reached the piano, he found why. The figure had a hole in the right side of his. Blood stained the ivory keys of the grand piano and slowly dripped to an ever-growing pool on the floor. It was plain to see this person was shot. He examined the corpse as he slowly walked to the other side, and cried out as he fell to the dusty, wooden floor. He instantly recognized the face, how could he not? It was that of his own, he was dead. As he gazed himself in shock and fear, he saw the pistol in his left hand.

He was dead.
He had killed himself.
And he didn’t even know why.

P.S. I'm sorry about the spacing problem, it looked so much better in Microsoft word.

seeker
September 5th, 2009, 12:03 PM
I'm just going to a quick little review of this, beware, I will nit pick. Just remember I'm just trying to help out and I'll try to pick out what I think needs to be changed.

He was scared, cold, and alone. Those were the only thoughts running through his mind. He looked around the small, dusted room, finding an old bed, dresser, a window, and a door which he was facing.Okay the impression I got right away was that you had just entered a room, but that is just my depiction and others would have a different view but, you haven't explained exactly what is going on from the beginning, so I just assumed that you had just walked in. "he looked around the small, dusted room" I'm not sure whether you are trying to say that the room is dusty or that it had recently been cleaned and "dusted", so you might just want to change your wording a little there or elaborate on your description. "finding an old dresser, a window, and a door which he was facing" I just have some minor issues with the way in which you wrote this sentence, first off you say "finding an old bed, dresser, a window", I just didn't like the way you say "dresser" you should say "a dresser" as it flows a bit better and it makes more sense. Secondly, this is where my first point comes in. When I said that I imagined this as having just entered the room and now looking around. "And a door which he was facing." this is what I mean. The way in which I pictured this wouldn't have the character facing a door right after walking in. So what I suggest is a more in depth description of what exactly is happening and a more detailed description of atmosphere and description of things around you. It also lengthens the piece entirely.

He turned to the old, white window to his right, and began to walk over to it. As he walked towards the old window he noticed no light shone from its opaque glass. No sunlight, moonlight, streets, just inky blackness. When he reached the window, he attempted to open it, but to no avail. "As he walked towards the old window he noticed no light shone from its opaque glass. " First of all, if it's night time which you state it is so by saying that there is inky blackness; there would be no need in saying that no light shone from the window. The next thing I didn't rather like so much was the way in which you said "opaque glass", well you see, glass is always going to be opaque, or at least the reader would assume the windows' glass to be see through regardless. So I would advise changing that bit.
"No sunlight, moonlight, streets, just inky blackness. When he reached the window, he attempted to open it, but to no avail." This doesn't have too many errors but it needs to be elaborated upon as it is a little vague, like what should be outside the window and why there is only "blackness".

This old, shuttered window was painted shut, but with obvious signs of rust forming along its hinges. Slightly frustrated and disappointed, he returned to the door at the other side of the room. "Painted shut", what I don't understand about this is that; saying something is "painted shut" employs that maybe it had been too heavily painted. That's the only impression I get. However if you were trying to use this as imagery I would suggest you expand on it a little, explain what you mean by painted shut and describe what the man is seeing.
Secondly he returned to the door at the other side of the room., I read this and thought, "but didn't he just turn right to look out the window?" so that doesn't make entire sense, you might want to clear that up a little bit. Always make sure you don't confuse the reader and keep them well informed along the way with as much descriptive detail as possible without taking too much away from the imagination.

He slowly opened the old wooden door, only to find a dark, empty hallway. From what he could see, this corridor only led to a case of stairs, and where these led to, he did not know. As he passed through the hallway, he found several doors, similar to the door he opened, but none of these would open."Empty hallway" change this to lifeless as it isn't empty if it has doors & a staircase.
"similar to the door he opened, but none of these would open." This is just a run on sentence as you've used open twice and it sounds rather repetitive. The rest isn't so bad you just need more description and help the reader get a better sense of atmosphere.

As he reached the staircase, he began to hear music notes, from a piano. Intrigued, he began to ascend the stairs. Part of the way down, he saw the piano from where the notes came from. It was a large, white grand piano in the middle of the dark room, practically lighting the room itself.

"...music notes, From a Piano." I don't like how you've worded this, I would change it to maybe "which sounded like they were coming from a piano" or something like that as it doesn't read very well. But I'm iffy about that hold sentence so I would modify most of it and add a lot more description as it could build suspense for the upcoming finale. Building suspense is always a good thing to do, especially in a story like this one. Using suspense would be your best option in a short story like this. "Part of the way down, he saw the piano from where the notes came from.", this line is a little strange. Well it is more bad description than anything. "Part of the way down" sounds kind of bad here I would suggest saying "On the way down" if you don't want to change it too much. "He saw the piano from where the notes came from" this is also a little strange and could be changed. Say "the notes crept closer to him, they met his attention and pulled him to the piano" or something, I don't know just be less typical.

As he further looked, he saw one person sitting at the piano. He was wearing a straight, white suit, and had short, light brown hair, similar to that of his own. As he slowly walked forward, the person did not move. As he finally reached the piano, he found why. The figure had a hole in the right side of his.

This actually has quite good description however it still has some flaws. "As he slowly walked forward, the person did not move. As he finally reached the piano, he found why. The figure had a hole in the right side of his." This is where it went down hill a little I'm afraid. It just get's confusing as when you say "The figure had a hole in the right side of his" it baffles the reader as you are not exactly sure who "he" is any longer as you have referred to both the main character and the "ghost" as "he" or "him" so be a little more clear before saying that particular sentence.

Blood stained the ivory keys of the grand piano and slowly dripped to an ever-growing pool on the floor. It was plain to see this person was shot. He examined the corpse as he slowly walked to the other side, and cried out as he fell to the dusty, wooden floor.

You are missing punctuation here. Blood stained, the ivory...; just think about the way in which you would say these things aloud and then put them down. If you don't the reader won't pause where they need to and your writing won't read correctly. "It was plain to see this person was shot." this sounds terrible I'm afraid, easily fixed however. "It was plain to see this person had been shot." is what you should have said as it is better grammar. The rest seems okay. Could be more descriptive and could have built up better but it's okay.


He instantly recognized the face, how could he not? It was that of his own, he was dead. As he gazed himself in shock and fear, he saw the pistol in his left hand.

He was dead.
He had killed himself.
And he didn’t even know why.

You might want to make sure that you are in fact talking about the main character here rather than always referring to him as "he", because as I've said before, you've called both the main character and the "corpse/ghost" "he" and it gets a little confusing.



Okay well that’s it. Try to elaborate and be more descriptive in your writing. try to build suspense before your climax scene rather than rushing into it. The rest is stated above, I need to watch the character limit xD;