Bare Bones: A Trainer's Story
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February 29th, 2012 (7:12 PM).
Back for more reviewing! Whoa there, buck-o. You've written a lot within a few days. When you post chapter by chapter, don't post a chapter every day. The new chapters don't let the readers really absorb all the information from preceding chapters. And I can tell you're not proofreading correctly. The thing with proofreading is, you can't write and edit on the same day. You can look over for spelling/grammar, but that's it. You cannot read your own work on the same day. It's impossible. You know why? Because you think it's fine as it is and you won't change a damn thing. Trust me, I'd know. This is a valuable skill: reading your own work and editing it. Whenever I write, I never edit until a day or two. That way, I'm more unfamiliar with it. Sure, I know what's going on but I can really look objectively at it. Being objective is also a big skill. Proofread a day or two after you've finished a chapter. That way, you let the chapter sink in and kind of float in the back of your mind. Do something else for a day, maybe work on the next chapter, but do not edit. Make sure your corrections are smooth. One way you can check that is by reading your stuff out loud. If you stumble on words when you read, change it. If something sounds awkward, change it. The revision process is a long one. It's the time where you revise everything you need to. If you think something's fine, more times than not, it's actually not. You have to be careful and also understand that things can change. Part of writing is "killing your own baby", to put it bluntly.
Also, you write so rapidly that you're forgetting to fix your other chapters. And that's a big thing. When you edit your chapters, it shows the readers that you care about the other chapters and that you took the time to sit down and re-read it and edit it, which you clearly didn't do. You're pretty much neglecting them. I gave myself an unspoken rule that I will edit my previous chapters to the best of my ability before I start moving forward. I think it's important to know your mistakes and work on not making the same mistakes. Cutlerine and I did make suggestions, and they apply most to what they're reviewing. Those previous chapters. It's best to use the feedback we use so that you can improve. I mean, sure you can apply those things to new chapters, but it's best to apply that knowledge to the chapters they're directed at. You're just using our reviews as standards for further chapters, which is fine in some ways, but in other cases, you just need to edit.
Your style is unraveling and I think I'm finally getting the hang of it. However, that doesn't mean it's perfect. There a lot of problems. One significant one is that your writing is muddy. There is very limited dialogue, and even when you do have it, it doesn't sound human. Make sure things make sense. Logic is a big key, and if your character sounds like a robot when he's really all flesh and blood, it takes readers out of your story and they start wondering what's up with it. Dialogue contributes to that. Make it clean, human, etc. Anyway, you didn't have any dialogue in the last two chapters. Sure, at times you don't really need words because actions can speak for them. In some instances, however, I think there needs to be some. There's the scene with him catching an Ekans. He sees a trainer battling it, but he eventually runs off because his Rattata was about to be lunch. It took me a while to figure out that Marcus wasn't battling him. There's a lack of description there too. You just vaguely say what's at the scene and leave it at that.
Again, I hate repeating myself, but it seems like you didn't get what I said before. Word space and important actions. Cutlerline even mentioned it too, but you don't dedicate much description to big events. There's that battle with Damien which was so short and vague, I was kind of wondering what was the point. Actions. Are. Important. Repeat after me, actions are seriously important to my story and I will be sure to dedicate ample word space so that readers know what parts of my story are important and they'll know when to pay attention. I felt like almost every single paragraph was the same length, the same block, the same boring old paragraphs. It's boring when everything gets predictable and the sentence structures are practically identical. Mix it up, but keep the flow. Actions alone do not provide a good source of imagery for readers. Maybe put in a few filler sentences to establish some character, setting, and other things you might feel that's important. You just need some more.
The Houndoom thing was really weird and didn't make sense at all. They approach Marcus, who sends out his Cubone, then they fight for maybe three seconds, and then they leave. I'm wondering what the point of that was as well as the whole not making sense part. They stare at Marcus then leave... What? Are these mobster Pokemon or something? They'd rip his face off unless he started running or climbed up a tree. You want to prove that the life of a trainer is brutal, but you have yet to show me that. It seems really freaking easy the way Marcus is catching Pokemon on accident and preventing himself from being eaten. Make his life hell. Make him have a great challenge. Make him look down at the edge of a cliff, forced to jump, and he'd start to question why the hell he's doing this in the first place. Give him some more experiences. The emotional buildups... I'm just not feeling them. I don't think there are many at all. It's just Marcus is excited, he's depressed, he's excited again, he pissed his pants, then he's questioning himself. Again, it's a prose thing. You might want to check out the Writer's Lounge with the sticky threads. They have some nice links to helping out writers with prose problems.
And for now, this is all I can really give. So here's my bit of feedback. I honestly wanted to go more in-depth and raise a few more points, but I'm feeling so tired I want to curl into a ball and sleep. Work on your writing and keep on improving. Take your time though. Pacing in your story and how you write is a big thing.
Joined May 2011
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