Yer a Lizard, Larry [Ch. 1]

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    Default Yer a Lizard, Larry [Ch. 1]

    BEEP BEEP BOOP BEEP

    Larry slammed his fist down on the alarm before it got crescend to an even louder tone. With a quick glance at its clockface, he groaned and forced himself out of bed.

    "So. Tired," he grunted to himself, as he groggily trudged over the piles of dirty laundry that littered the carpet floor of his bedroom. Kicking an old shoe aside, he dropped down onto the chair by his desk, and glanced in the mirror.

    "Such bedhead. Much wow," he confirmed, glancing at the state he was in after the night before. Now, it's not like he was even out partying or clubbing last night, Larry just tended to toss and turn a lot. Luckily, he had no hair that could be messy. For some reason, he was never able to grow out any hair.

    In fact, that wasn't all that was strange about Larry. It was made very clear from a very young age by the doctors that he had a serious dermal condition. Instead of a colour befitting of humans, his skin was a pale yellow colour. Doctors claimed that it was a 'medical marvel' in how, despite the shade of his skin, it was otherwise quite normal. It was down to an overexpression of melanin, they reckoned.

    What's more was that Larry had really long ears that stopped just above his shoulders, and his stubby legs and long arms meant that he constantly had his arms practically trailing on the ground. Let's not even mention the tail, which he kept hidden; and for good reason too - what kind of freak has a tail!

    But, alas, Larry knew that he was a freak. The insults and taunts on the streets didn't help, but they were nothing compared to how his family treated him. Well, his adopted family, if that eases any confusion. They had no problem labelling Larry as a freak, and they had tried their very best to keep him hidden from society; he was never allowed to go to school, and only allowed outside during night-time, even though he loved the sun.

    What's more, Larry was forced to live in a semi-converted broom closet beneath the staircase! His family of the last ten years had deemed it to be the most fitting place for someone of his description.

    "Boy!" a deep voice bellowed causing Larry to jump all of a sudden. His head smacked into the unsurprisingly-low ceiling. He could feel a bump on the top of his head start to form, and he found himself muttering darkly for the second time that morning.

    The man, or perhaps walrus would be a better term, behind the voice was none other than his adopted father, Verton Durnsley. He was enormously fat, and almost equally as tall, giving him an unusually round shape that was anything but pleasing. His most prominent feature: his thick walrus moustache, was quivering with rage as Larry entered the kitchen area.

    "Boy!" Verton bellowed once more, eyes bulging and face reddening in anger.

    "What?" Larry asked, perhaps lacking a certain tact, clearly still annoyed at his throbbing crown.

    "What?! What?! You insolent little blighter!" the gargantuan roared. "You... boy, having the cheek to say 'what' to me!"

    Larry was at a loss for words. Verton's stupidity was almost impossible to believe at times.

    "Sorry..." Larry began. "Sir," he added, albeit stiffly.

    "Boy!" Vert continued. "We're going out."

    Larry knew better than to ask where or how long they were going for. He could just keep his head down and pray he'd have the house all to himself for a few hours.

    "No, Monie says you can't be trusted here," he said, gesturing half-heartedly towards his scrawny mule-faced wife, standing directly behind him. Harry hadn't even noticed her until that point, and then he couldn't help but notice her protruding horse teeth. Pneumonia Durnsley was equally as vile as her husband. The personality matched the name matched the face, Harry found himself thinking for not the first time.

    "But I always stay here," Larry said through gritted teeth.

    "You think I don't know that, boy?! Anyway, you don't have a say, so grab your coat."

    "But, I haven't even had breakfast yet," Larry started, but he should have known better than to argue with the easily-angered Verton. Larry didn't even have time to react as a fat meaty fist hit him in the face.

    "My toof-" Larry managed, holding his jaw in agony. Verton was not someone to be messed with, but Larry couldn't help but be cheeky. It had earned him this new badge of honour, he thought, spitting out a tooth into the palm of his hand. There were little flecks of blood on it.

    "And hurry up about it!" Pneumonia snapped, voice about as stagnant as a jackhammer; it tended to leap through octaves when she was irate. It often reached decibels so high that Larry wondered whether mutts such as Growlithe and Houndour could even make out what she was saying.

    Stomach grumbling, head throbbing, tooth aching, Larry got into the car. Thankfully he had the whole back seat to himself, yet it still felt cramped. This car was not really as designed for four people as Verton had been led to believe. It truly wasn't hard to persuade that man though.

    "My dunchkin sweetums," Pneumonia purred, thinking of her natural son, Drob. "He'll be okay, won't he Vert? Maybe he's hungry," she whined.

    "You know, I'm quite peckish mys-"

    "Shut it, boy!" Vert snapped as they drove out of their quiet neighbourhood and towards the meeting point. Drob was having his birthday at one of the newly-established Safari Zones nearby, and Pnemonia and Verton were due to meet him there. Larry would probably be stuck feeding the Pidgey, if they even let him out of the car this time. His condition meant seeing light was not really something he got to experience, especially in a crowded place like the Safari Zone. Maybe they had eased up on him?

    It only took one stabbing pain in his gums to remind him that, nope, they certainly hadn't eased up on him. He was still the freak show.

    The drive to the Safari lasted a surprisingly long time, and Pneumonia was getting more and more frantic as the drive continued. Larry couldn't help but notice as she peered back at him through the rear-view mirror every few minutes, watching him with her beady brown eyes. She didn't even have the decency to turn away when he did accidentally make eye contact. She just kept staring.

    "Is it going to be much longer, dear?" Pneumonia asked Verton after a solid forty minutes of silence. Verton grunted through his coarse moustache. This non-commital grunt appeared to be all he was going to say. And so the drive pressed on.

    The car grinded to a halt after some time. Larry had found himself half-lying on the seat next to him. His shorts-covered legs were stuck with swear to the leather of the carseat. He didn't even realise how hot it had gotten until he saw the glaring sun through the windshield. Larry's tail had popped out of his shorts' leghole and was flicking back and forth lazily as if it had a mind of its own.

    "Put that away," Pneumonia hissed, reaching back and slapping his lazy tail with her outstretched hands.

    "Sto- I am- Stop- No- Sto," Larry stuttered, clutching his tail protectively away from her furious flailing hands.

    It was only when the tail had been safely tucked inside that Larry realised that they were not at the Safari.

    "Where are w-" he started, but was cut across by Verton.

    "Out, boy," he said coolly, giving Larry a dirty, hate-fuelled stare.

    "This isn't the Safari."

    "It may as well be! This is where you're out! Myself and Monia have had it up to here with you, you little freak of nature. We can't suffer this anymore. We've put up with you ten years now, you're old enough to find your way."

    Larry could feel a horrid combination of fear and anger swelling up inside of himself. The pair simply stared at him.

    "Are you really just gonna abandon me here? I'll probably die of thirst. And I have nowhere to even go!" Larry wailed, the desperation had well and truly crept into his voice.

    The door slammed. The engine revved, and the little volkswaggen drove off. Larry was stranded alone, in some godforsaken craggy land in the sweltering heat, miles from any form of civillisation. He slumped onto the ground, and just lay there on the warm rock below for quite some time.

    He watched as some unperturbed wispy clouds passed serenely above him. They had no worries, no fear of dying from dehydration or thirst. They didn't have to put up with the Durnsleys! In fact, they even had each other. Larry was as alone as he could be.

    "Why me!?" he asked the clouds above. And for a while, he got no reply, but Larry started to get the weirdest sensation that he was being watched. Rising to a slumped and slightly less comfortable position, he glanced backwards and to all sides.

    "Nothing," he muttered to himself. Then, he heard it. A sound similar to a combination of both gas leaking frpm pipes and leaves rustling in the wind filled his ears.

    "What the-"

    ASSSSSSSSK AGAINNN

    The words were easy to make out, despite the obviously drawn out 's' sound.

    "Ask what?" Larry asked, throwing all caution to the wind. If he had gone delirious, he was beyond caring - it really was just one of those days.

    ASSSSK AND I'LL TELLLL YOU ALL YOU NEED TO KNOWWW

    There was something a little unnerving about the voice that seemed to be coming from inside of his own head. If he was going mad, it's not like there was anyone in the near proximity to notice. Why not just follow the voice? It beats sitting here and waiting to die.

    "Who are you?" he started, a little uncertain as to what he was doing talking to himself.

    THAT IS NOTTT THE QUESTION YOU WANT TO KNOOOOW

    A little annoyed, Larry rose to his feet and dusted his shorts with his little yellow hands. This was getting annoying rather quickly.

    YOU ARE NOT LIKE THE OTHERSSS, ARE YOU?

    It was true. That hit far too close to home. A lot of people feel different compared to the world around them, but the truth is, Larry was different. Whether a freakcase, or something entirely unique, he wasn't ever sure.

    "What am I?" he asked, looking down at his dusty hands. A bit of a silence followed, and Larry could feel his gut tighten in anticipation. Just when he assumed that the voice wouldn't reply, he heard it.

    YOU'RE A LIZARD, LARRY.

    A LIZZZARD. YOUR ANCESSSTORS WERE THE GREAT HELIOPTIIIILE OF YORKKKK.


    Although it was completely absurd and proposterous, something inside of Larry clicked together. This ridiculousness suddenly didn't seem quite so ridiculous now. There were questions to be sure, but Larry felt as though this being was correct about it all; he really was a descendant of the extinct Pokemon Helioptile. The skin, arms, legs, tail... But he was also at least part human. That much he was certain of.

    YOUR REPTILLIAN INSTINCCCTSSSS AND FEATURESSS. DYING BREED MATED WITH HUMANSSS AND DEFIED NATURE.

    THEY BROKE THE ACT OF GODSSS.

    WIPED FROM EXISSSTENCE FOR THEIR DISCREPENCIESSS. THEIR REMAINING OFFSPRING WENT INTO HIDING DEEP DEEP UNDERGROOUUND. YOU WERE SSSEPERATED AND LEFT ON THE DURNSLY'SSS DOORSTEP.


    It all made sense. Things Larry had taken for granted, now seemed so much clearer. He could understand it all, and it made so much sense. His people still existed. He would be welcome with them, and no longer the freak.

    "What must I do?"

    BENEEAATTTHHH YOU, YOUR FRIEENDSS ARE ALL WAITIINNNG.

    Without hesitation, Larry obeyed; he seemed mesmerized by this voice that beckoned him. This voice would lead him to his friends and family, he desperately wanted to believe, and it seemed as though Larry really did believe this as he dropped down to his knees and shoved his fingers deep into the cracks in the rocky ground. He yanked the looser stones up and tossed them behind him carelessly.

    The sun had lowered a great deal in the sky when Larry paused to catch his breath. He was panting a little, and very thirsty by this stage, yet his kind below would surely have fluids on hand for when he reached them. His stubby little fingers were covered in blisters and ached from the strain of the many broken rocks and pebbles. He could see the outline of where some of the more jagged pieces had dug into his pale yellow skin. The rocks had really started to pile-up behind him and he had dug perhaps ten feet into the ground by this stage.

    It almost seemed too good to actually be true, but it must be true. It had to be true. His peers, and real family would be awaiting him, and they would welcome him. They would accept him as one of them, and he would finally feel like he belonged. And so, with that thought lingering in his mind, he kept digging.

    YESSS the voice urged Larry onwards. Larry hadn't noticed how silent the voice had been for the last few hours, but there was a little something different about the voice now, Larry couldn't help but notice; something in the voice seemed a little sinister or something - Larry couldn't quite put his finger on it.

    KEEP GOINNGGG. YOUR FRIENDSSS WANT TO SEEEE YOU.

    Larry had to keep digging, right? Finally a place where he'd belong and be welcomed... The voice though... No, he must keep digging. He couldn't let this slip between his fingers. He was so close to a real family after all.

    After just a few more minutes of digging, Larry found himself physically exhausted. The taxing work had left him with bruises, cuts and pains dancing up and down his body like there was no tomorrow. He had reached a break from the larger rocks, it seemed, as he saw only a fine dust of little brown pebbles was barring his way to acceptance. Desperately, using the remaining dregs of his energy, he fling the pebbles backwards, scooping them out eagerly.

    SOOO CLOOSSSSE.

    The pebbles down here were warmer, much like the ones at the surface had been. Some were coated in a foul-smelling slimey substance. Larry had to ignore the ooze. Nothing could stop him. That is, until he felt something move beneath him. Perhaps it was his people queueing up to see him. Yeah, that must be it! They obviously knew he would be coming.

    "Helioptile," he said aloud. He would have to get used to that odd word. "Helioptile," he repeated, again and again as he ripped the pebbles out.

    "Helioptile!"

    The ground below vibrated a little, and as Larry pulled a handfull of the smaller pebbles out, he saw a dark hole below him - a break from the rocks.

    "Helioptile!"

    He peered into the dark hole. Perhaps his people lived in little caverns underground. He didn't really like the thought of living under the ground forever; he had always love the sun afterall.

    "Helioptile!"

    He brought his face down to the hole, and pressed it against the warm rocks. Some of the sharper ones poked into his face, but he didn't care. Then, he saw a flash of purple. Or, he thought he did. It was a little confusing. Weren't his people supposed to be a pale yellow colour, just like him.

    "Heliop-" Larry was cut short by a huge ripping sound. He was shoved back forcefully and cried out a little as he was slammed into the earth surrounding him. A shower of stones and dirt cascaded over him, blinding him momentarily.

    [i]LARRY POTHEAD!/i]

    A purple creature rose out of the ground from where he had been standing just moments previously. It was long and purple and very snake-like. It had a yellow underbelly, and a rather bulbous head with a rather wicked-looking face. The creature was rather thick too, about twice the width of Larry in fact, and much longer than him.

    IT FEEEELS SOOO GOOD TO BE FREEE AGAIN.

    The snake-like Pokemon forced its way out of the ground and onto the drained Larry. The collosal serpent crushed Larry's legs with its heavy, well-controlled movements. Larry screamed out in agony as he heard his shin crack under the weight of the monstrous creature.

    "Ger off!" Larry shouted as the snake advanced, slithering over his body. His thorax felt as though it was about to collapse under the strain. Larry was panicking, as the creature squirmed its way forward. Larry could smell its foul hot breath on his cheeks. It had huge bulging yellow eyes and a broad toothless mouth that seemed to be smiling at him.

    I'VE BEEN TRAPPED SO LONG, AND I'M OH-SO HUNGRY.

    The serpents jaw was forced this way and that way as the snake dislocated it. It was not long before Larry would be swallowed whole, he knew, yet he was powerless to react. Pinned and weakened, Larry was helpless as the powerful jaws stretched over and engulfed him. Peristalsis kicked into effect and soon the contracting muscles were forcing Larry inside. It was so tight, and dark and moist. He could feel himself be squeazed along through the serpent's body. This sensation lasted quite a long while, and Larry was almost certain that he was still being pushed through the snake's body even a few minutes later.

    Then he saw something bright ahead. A shining light in the distance. His arms were pinned to his sides so Larry couldn't even shield himself from the brilliant light. Yet, he still couldn't help but wonder why on earth there was a light.

    The light was definitely an opening into the outside world. That became apparent as he got pressed closer. The muscular contractions kept pushing him towards the opening that was starting to look very small. It couldn't be much bigger than his head.

    Larry gasped when he lowered his head and felt the very slimey fluid between himself and the serpent's inner dermis. He felt a push and was sent flying forwards. His shoulder was forced through the opening. The shoving sensation didn't stop, and seemed to intensify. His right arm was forced through, then his head. When Larry managed to force his left arm through, he shot out of the snake and into the blinding white light. He landed on something soft, yet his whole body still ached. The light was burning his eyes, and Larry had no choice but to cover them.

    Then he heard a voice; a beautiful familiar voice. A voice that promised safety and comfort.

    "Welcome home, son," a soft voice said.

    --

    Character Count: 17,959
    Pokemon:

    Helioptile - Medium, and Ekans - Simple

    Note: Yes, I am fully aware of how weird this story is. I didn't think it would be a normal story when it was based on an image of a lizard in a wizard hat. Also, Harry Potter references galore. Like, if you got the parseltongue hint and "geroff", you are seriously awesome.

    Also, for the grader, probably not a great idea to focus on the realism of this plot. This is set in a world both similar, and completely different than our own. This might be a series I will continue in the future, so I guess this can be considered the first chapter.

    Oh. And yeah, it's up to the reader's imagination regarding our protagonist at this point. I don't wanna spoil anything, but you can view the protoganist as some kind of Helioptile/Human hybrid, or just a Helioptile with human characteristics. I'm aware it's not exactly conventional, but it's different!
    Last edited by Synthesis; 11th December 2013 at 03:27 PM.

  2. #2
    .______. Elysia's Avatar
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    Default Re: Yer a Lizard, Larry [Ch. 1]

    Mine plz ._.

  3. #3
    .______. Elysia's Avatar
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    Default Re: Yer a Lizard, Larry [Ch. 1]

    DAFUQ DID I JUST READ.





    NO BUT ACTUALLY.

    THE BEGINNING STUFF

    Okay, so from the first Beep Beep Boop Beep we become pretty sure that this isn’t going to be a serious story, and you don’t disappoint.

    This is around the part where I berate you for doing an introduction as trite and clichéd as your character’s waking up in the morning: it’s been done before, it’s boring, it’s—oh, wait, this is probably done on purpose and this story isn’t even remotely serious.

    It was around here that I got stuck with writing this grade and realized that my standard approach isn’t going to fit the body of your story at all. Given that parody-writing burns my skin like the searing fire of hell, I’m going to start straying off of the beaten path with this grade really, really quickly. Be warned. ._.

    Much grammar

    Such grade

    Wow

    Anyway. I suppose the best advice for writing a humorous story is to go big or go home: you want to make us laugh, and if you don’t have us rolling out of our seats and giggling madly to ourselves, you’ve created a very awkward story. Because a lot of comedy-writing is so hit-and-miss, your introduction becomes incredibly important. Not only do you want to catch our attention with something interesting (what a standard story would call the hook), but you probably want to broadcast a little that this is going to be a humorous, atypical one.

    And did you manage to do that? Sort of, I guess. I had a hunch from the Beep Beep Beep Boop that you were kidding; then again, that’s not exactly an implausible start to your story. Things start getting weird by the time we get to much doge wow, but it’s so slow I can’t tell if it’s intentional or not.

    I guess what I’m trying to say: your story is entirely nonsensical. That’s almost the point of it. You want to make the transition into this nonsensical abrupt, either by having a completely out-of-this-world introduction with randomness everywhere, or by having a completely average introduction and then smashing us out of left field with the “lolwut” factor. Right now, you’re sort of in the middle—I wouldn’t normally advocate an extreme, but I think here it’s almost necessary to pick one or the other and stick with it.

    THE PLOT STUFF

    Seriously, dafuq did I read.

    I would go through and point out the plotholes and characterization flaws here like I’m supposed to, but I’m overwhelmingly aware that that is not the point of your story.

    However, I’m then left with the question of what the point of your story is, lol, and the answer can’t be that there isn’t one. More on that in a sec.

    Basically, your plot is a large string of random events held together by the common thread of Harry Potter Affectionate Parody. That’s… interesting, I guess. There were only so many pseudo-misspellings of the main cast before it got old, only so much pseudo-dialogue that could be taken, etc etc. Luckily, you threw in your own twists and such to make this less of a “hey guys I’m so clever I’m making fun of Harry Potter” and more of its own “I’m making fun of Harry Potter but it’s different from the first thing because I have a story I guess?” sort of thing. At this level, borrowing from pre-existing source material in the name of parody is probably acceptable; obviously, you aren’t trying to pass this idea off as your own and you keep poking fun at it, and there was a fair enough balance of your own ideas.

    And I’m glad you drew that line where you did; eventually, it gets old running the same joke over and over again. Parodies and comedies are one of the most difficult kinds of fiction to write because you have to be constantly on your toes, looking for that joke—otherwise, your writing is quick to seem trite and boring, and what worked great two paragraphs ago isn’t so hot now.

    The ending was… random, honestly. Dafuq did I read, bro. But the randomness worked, I think, namely because the entire story was pretty random.

    And that’s where we start to juggle the line of suspension of disbelief. Fiction in general requires the suspense of disbelief (that’s why it’s fictional, after all); if I’m spouting jargon, you basically just have to get your readers to accept that, yes, the events of your story don’t make sense in real life but, yes, they totally make sense in your story as you’ve proven with x, y, and z. Comedic fiction basically takes the suspension of disbelief and punts it out the window. It’s a boy named Larry Pothead who’s secretly a Helioptile-maybe, and then he gets eaten by an Ekans.

    So, actually, the “dafuq” reaction is spot-on for what you’re aiming for, I guess, and the fact that I can’t find a point to your story is almost the point to the story. At higher levels, I’d get irritated at you and lecture you on what a plot should look like. At this rank, however, you’ve got a light-hearted plot that doesn’t take itself seriously in the slightest, and I respect that. Nicely done here.

    THE PRETTY STUFF AND THE GRAMMAR STUFF

    "Such bedhead. Much wow."
    Yeah, basically this.

    Sometimes your sentences are kind of silly and repetitive:
    Instead of a colour befitting of humans, his skin was a pale yellow colour.
    But it’s really nothing pressing, and I certainly never got the “ugh wow he used colou twice in two sentences I hate this story so much!” feel.

    And sometimes the structure of your sentences obscures the meaning a little:
    [quote] Doctors claimed that it was a 'medical marvel' in how, despite the shade of his skin, it was otherwise quite normal. quote]
    The second ‘it’ (underlined for clarity) is really vague and doesn’t have a proper antecedent (in hindsight, I can see that ‘it’ refers to Larry’s skin, but I couldn’t tell at first). I thought it was referring to the medical marvel in general, which would mean Larry’s condition, which would mean that, other than his yellow skin, he was quite normal. Except for the completely inhuman body structure and tail and such.

    And so the drive pressed on.

    The car grinded to a halt after some time.
    The passage of time is always difficult to convey in fiction, but this is probably pushing it a little. “And so” implies that you’ve set up a precedent for how the time passed, ie they all sit in silence or everyone gangs up on Larry or something, and yet there’s no real pattern of how it passes. Furthermore, the second sentence kind of lampshades the fact that you’ve made a ton of time pass for us—something that you want the readers to be aware of but not blatantly notice.

    Pneumonia Durnsley was equally as vile as her husband.
    Meh, this is one of the better instances where the “show, don’t tell” rule could really come into play. Why, besides the fact that you’re telling us, is she really vile? Is it the horse teeth or the shrill voice or the eavesdropping? There’s no need to dumb things down from the readers—we can pick up, for example, on the idea that Pneumonia has a really annoying voice, so we should think of her as an annoying character (that was a good use of showing, not telling, by the way).

    Massive kudos on the description of Larry getting eaten by the snake, by the way. It was really horrifying and gross and slimy, which is exactly the kind of feeling you’d want to get across in a situation like that. The change was a little abrupt from happy-go-lucky in the Larry Pothead world, though—and, again, this might have worked to your favor if you had gone a little more or less extreme (as shown in your introduction): either wham us with the surprise or slowly sink into the creepy prose, but don’t go halfway.

    I guess my largest qualm would go with the description of Larry himself—I get that you wanted to keep it open-ended (as you mentioned in your author’s note), but it was a little cumbersome to imagine him—I definitely just thought he was a completely Helioptile Helioptile, which made the whole “wow we adopted this nephew of ours” thing really, really confusing. Granted, the human-ish Helioptile would’ve been equally odd (although more on the front of “hey our adopted nephew is half-Helioptile; let’s not look into this for science!”). Since absurdity is basically the backbone of your story, you can probably pick either one and go with it, but the emphasis is that you should at least pick one to go with, to clear up the confusion.

    THE NUMERICAL STUFF

    Why does this section exist.

    Lengthwise, you're fine. You may want to look into the pacing-areas I suggested (when Ekans noms Larry, and at the very beginning); otherwise, I really can't say. The abrupt shifts of your story work to your advantage, at least, so either have the abrupt shift or the slow fade; don't try to do both.

    THE OUTCOME STUFF

    I have to admit, this grade was a little… challenging. I’m sorry if this isn’t the kind of feedback you were looking for; to my knowledge, this was not a serious story and it was more of a trollfic than anything else, so I tried to grade it as such. In a story like this, I sort of assumed you weren’t going to be super-invested in how your characters developed or how your plot presented itself, so I didn’t feel the need to address these more serious aspects of your story in my grade. If you wanted specific feedback on these elements, let me know and I’ll be happy to do a different style/focus of grading. This was more of a quick grade for a quick story and such.

    Bear in mind, of course, that higher-level stories will necessitate more in-depth plot and character and such, so brushing off something as a joke becomes less and less of an option as you get above the Medium rank. It was perfectly okay here, and I think the dark comedy played an excellent role, but do consider this in the future, should you try to go for higher-ranked captures.


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