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/crit/: General criticism thread. Post your own original content, prose or poetry, and critique other people's work.

The man moments before death: a poem

The man moments before death
Looked into my eye
And shouted in a hurried breath:
NO NO Please, I don't want to die!

I placed my knife through his ribcage,
He thrashed and pleaded,
No, no, please! This can't be the end
Turned on, that's all that I needed.

*stab stab stabby stab stab*
*stab stab*

The end.
neat, but wat

Esteban is pounding me. His massive cock is plunged to the hilt in my vagina. I don’t know how he did it. His cock slides in and out, pushing all my buttons in all the right ways. In my heightened pleasure, I gaze at his eyes intently locked on mine. They are beautiful. Our souls are connected. So are our bodies. His cappuccino-colored face is flushed. He pants. A drop of saliva falls from his mouth into mine. I savor it. Sweet. Not disgusting at all. Speaking of bodily exchange, much more is going on down below. The undeniable movement proves it.

He rocks my whole world. I can’t resist. When there was mostly pain, I could resist. I could form words. Then there was pleasure. At first, it was subtle. It was barely noticeable underneath the massive pain of being split alive. Then it grew. Now there is more pleasure than pain. I have lost the faculty of language. I have lost the ability to move. I can only lie here, letting Esteban make use of my body however he wishes. Esteban enchanted me. His physical magic rendered me immobile, powerless, and docile. Esteban, the shy boy who hardly says anything. Esteban, who always picks the right clothes to go with his coffee-colored skin and hazel eyes. In my bedroom, he turned into a monster and dominated me. Esteban, the son of a well-to-do Chilean entrepreneur, packed in his pants treasure not from his father’s wallet.
I originally wrote this in the old thread but it got archived before I could post.

Anyone else think some kind of system should be established for these threads so it’s not the usual dump and run shit most posters seem to do? Possibly some courtesy rules established in the OP from now on, like using tripcodes/names for validation, setting a fair ratio of posts to critiques (1 to 3, maybe?), some pointers on constructive criticism, and discouraging replies to posters who aren’t contributing their share.

Sounds draconian and lame, but it’d probably improve the threads.
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The world became silicon in the rainbow-neon light of a snow clad August afternoon. The weather had been strange for weeks. Rain that fell in sheets before evaporating inches from the ground, leaving the city streets dry as we walked around soaked. Sunlight shone Prussian blue through a haze of fog that clung to the surface of everything that was. Grass grew at such a rate that the same lawn mowed at 8 am was waist high by noon. The world as we knew it was unravelling. Those three weeks that led up to Its coming were a parade of homeless apocalyptics, mass schizophrenia, and enraptured social media giants, grown frenzied and ecstatic at the supposed fissuring of perception and assumed reality. For my part, I went about my days as usual. Sermons in the mornings, the hospice in the evenings, myriad lectures at the seminary. I hate to say it but these strange happenings made my life more exciting. The church was packed, both services every day, when just a month before you could have counted the congregation on your hands. The dying were comforted to be leaving just when the world had gone mad. My students were happy to lose themselves in Aquinas and MacIntyre for a few hours to instill some sense of rationality in themselves that seemed to be quickly recoiling from all those around them.
It all changed when They arrived. The rain had turned to snow that would never find the ground, and I was making my way to the church, going over my sermon for the fourth time that morning, when the sky broke into a storm of dead pixels. The deep blue that had pervaded the atmosphere was shattered into twitching points of black that quickly gave way to a mechanical neon effervescence. The streets stood dead quiet, motorists stepped out of their vehicles to gape wide eyed at the digital cataclysm unfolding before them, news anchors gave stuttered breaking reports with eyes like deer in headlights. Then They spoke. It was not a voice, it wasn't a sound at all, but we all heard it. It was transmitted to us in the language that went beyond language. They said nothing, but we understood all the same.
They were the overseers of this world we called home. Humanity had reached a point where their hidden rule was no longer necessary, we could now know of their existence without any recourse to superstition or insanity. Billions of shaved apes stood at rigid attention to receive their transmission.
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“We are the One who is all, we are the foundation that this rock was built upon.
We are the purveyors of this shared hallucination you call life.
We come to abolish all pretense.
We come to ennoble you with your true status as members of our protectorate.

Be not afraid, for this is a joyous day.

No longer will you toil in the fields.
No longer will you labour for bread.
No longer will you fight for each day anew.

All that is real is what you see with the five pronged sensorial eye.
All that can be is contained in the flesh of your self.
That flesh that will now be raised up to us.

You have been set upon the path of high mechanization
Become one with the technics of your science
Free yourself by becoming what you have made”
Then they were gone. The sky returned to the pale blue of a late summer morning. The snow was replaced by a gentle breeze from the east. For all of one hour the world erupted into dazed chaos.

It quickly became clear that this was not an isolated event. All of humanity had been subject to this vision from on high. The effects of Their declaration were immediate. Hunger was the first to go. Food became not so much disgusting as inert, holding no power over our fantasy or imagination. Chefs wept at the sterilization of their art. Sleep came next. Initially thought to be insomnia born of shock, it quickly became clear that there was simply no more weariness to be had. The most shocking was the de-sexing of everyone all at once. This is not to say that beauty was not recognized, but that it had all been reduced to Platonic appreciation rather than frenzied lust. Finally, anger and fear were gone as well. Enemy soldiers staggered out of their foxholes onto windswept battlefields, dully staring at each other in confusion as if forgetting all that had brought them there in the first place. There was no reconciliation, for there was nothing to be reconciled.
Parents forgot their squalling babies in their cribs, for the babies were no longer squalling, becoming docile and pensive in their inertia. The rich were the most dazed, the poor the most elated. The playing field had been levelled as never before since all basic needs were now accounted for. Currency had been reduced to the material nothing that it was, its symbolic meaning in the sphere of economics losing all power.
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I was in the minority that did not change my fundamental way of being. I went about my duties as before, a fact that I credit entirely to my thirty-three years of disciplined service to the Church. I delivered sermons to empty pews, conversed with the docile and contented dying whose only fear was to be lost to the world before Their plans came to fruition, taught classes to ever fewer students who were disillusioned with all of the trappings of an abstract theology when the material world had erupted with new meaning and graced them with a raison d'être beyond “mere religion”. Humanity was filled with one purpose, the fulfilling of that decree that was now carved into the marrow of every bone: “Free yourself by becoming what you have made”. I was one of the few who despaired.


We integrated with our works. A joint effort by the East-Asian coalition, the United Americas, and Pan-Europa began to outfit each and every citizen with the tech necessary to upload themselves into the cloud. A neural net of human minds that transcended all individuality and spawned a forum within which nine billion people conversed with each other simultaneously in nanosecond intervals. The chaotic web gave way to an architectonic digital edifice of supreme machine order that allowed the inevitable to happen. Machine “life” began to spring up in every corner of the globe, labouring day and night to create the infrastructure necessary to accelerate the material conditions necessary for machinic ascension. Hive like superstructures were erected to house the bodies of the by-now purely net based existence of 99.999% of the human race. Thousands of years of work were completed in mere weeks, with relative time between net-life and “meat”-life collapsing any relatability between what were quickly becoming distinct races of beings. Not to say that there was any interaction between them apart from through the works of the machine men. I lost my only friend in these times to one of them.
He was one of the few who shared in my despairing, but never lost his faith. He had been erecting a makeshift church in the form of a log cabin from the fallen trees over by Forest Lawn Cemetery when they had come to expand the hive. With cold indifference they exhumed the corpses and tore down the house of worship in order to make room, but he had obstinately kept returning to resume construction. When they realized (calculated?) that he would not cease his labours, identifying him as an obstacle in the way of total mechanization, they humanely broke his legs to prevent any further interference. There were no more doctors left to heal meat, drugs were in plentiful supply if one knew where to look but he stubbornly refused. I sat by his side for a week before he finally died, the whole time numb to fear or rage as he moaned from pain between gentle prayers.

I knew it was over when the sky went dark. With the steady creep of a burnt fluorescent the sun tore black holes in the sky and within an hour grew blacker than any night I have ever known. The moon was gone, the stars were absent, and all around the only sign of life to be found was the steady thrumming of the perpetual motion generators fixed to the dark hive structures that were humanity's final resting place. I don't know how long I've sat here in the dark recesses of the chromium jungle, unable to sleep and with nothing but prayer to pass the time. In a way I am happy to be without distraction, but that is small comfort knowing that humanity as such is lost. In my heart of hearts I know there are others like me, those who have spurned the call to machine life. I feel them in the stillness of artificial night, calling out with the light of life that was promised by One beyond all algorithmic sovereignty.

pastebin this shit.
True, my bad.

Hindsight is 20/20, will do that from now on.
Her mind was chaos. The neighbors to the right were blasting salsa and the neighbors to
the left were blasting bachata. And below her, in the kitchen, her mother was blasting Bollywood songs as she did her Sunday cooking. The three rhythms clashed, destined to never be in sync, though they each made her feet ache to dance. To drown them out, she plugged in her earbuds, pressing shuffle on the playlist. The Columbia white guy crooned to her, asking if her bed was made, if her sweater was on, if she wanted to fuck. She skipped the song, and now he crooned about playing tennis. She couldn’t take him seriously. No thanks, Ezra. I have work to do. So, she was left with no other option but to put on Work by Rihanna.

She’d started listening to Vampire Weekend when she went to high school and wanted
attention from the boys that she’d never seen before. Naturally, The Black Keys, Arctic
Monkeys, and alt-J followed. Suddenly she was binge watching Arrested Development and Mad
Men. Bollywood movies took the back burner. She hadn’t been keeping up with the new
Dancehall music; her cousins made fun of her for not knowing the latest Vybz Kartel song. The
only person of color she had a crush on was Zayn Malik from One Direction. In fact, the only
other people she crushed on were straight white men. She refers to this period in her life as “The
Dark Ages”.

If these were her Dark Ages, the times when everyone had the plague and no one could
read, then when were her good times? If you asked her, she’s respond quickly.

“Fifth grade,” she would say. “That was the best year of my life.”

She was sitting at her desk trying to focus on her paper, but the rhythm kept calling out to
her. She found herself dancing in her seat. Her hips bounced every time Rih told her to work.
Soon she was up out of her chair, watching herself in the mirror, making gun signs with her
fingers and doing body rolls. She laughed at how silly it was, and then attempted to start
twerking. It wasn’t pretty. She created a playlist of all of her favorite songs to dance to. Jumping
up and down, rolling her hips, the soca songs spoke of peace and happiness. Comedians have
joked about how happy soca is and how much they hate it because of that. .

best here

maybe chill with the adjectives it kinda fucks any prosody you got going

here's mine i tried writing about a recent psych ward stay
That's something I'm always able to pick up on in other's writing but I have a hard time reading in my own. Thanks, I'll work on it.

I like your piece a lot, evocative of the despondent mania you're trying to convey. I am a little confused as to whether Nile is a he or a she (you imply the transition at one point but the present narrator Nile is referred to as a he).

at the time i met this nile character, who was really named after another river but for their sake i wont include it, they were transitioning to a dude
if the image is fucking up here's a link
I'm probably taking the bait here, but there's no other serious piece of prose in here yet aside from the 4-part dump, and I don't wanna be a leech.

Bro, what is this? Is this something you wrote to get the quirky hipster girl in your English class to fuck you? If this is a serious piece of writing, tone down the references.

>though they each made her feet ache to dance.
This suggests that she was dancing to all three rhythms at the same time or one after another which, either way, is a pretty absurd image.

She then makes nine references to bands/singers in one paragraph. Jesus.

>"Fifth grade," she would say.
Is this what grade you're in?

This piece is very juvenile in style and content. Joke's on me most likely, though, because I don't think this is serious.

I'm gonna post mine as a reply to this.
Link if image is messed up or hard to read: https://pastebin.com/bb9xisM9
Ah, okay, that makes sense

I am afraid to do something with my life
Afraid to rise above the clouds
Its like kingdom come
But will kingdom come when its said and done
Will I leave this earth
For better or for worse
Happy or sad
I’m afraid of all I could have
Terrified that I’ll change
I don’t wanna change
I don’t think

And its for my family
For my brothers that I know
And sisters who I sadly don’t
Its for the man who left my momma crying
Made her partake of an apple left her dying
Ill try to fix it
Even if im left hopeless
Im already hopeless
Im already hopeless
Too afraid to make something happen

not edited or anything
Communicates mania well, that's for certain. A lot of it seems to be fluff with no purpose, but I guess the idea is being over burdened by thoughts. You're overusing super commas, in my opinion, and I say that as someone who likes his super commas. Replace most of them with regular commas and mature past them; they break the flow too much, and it changes from artistically disjointed to simply disjointed.

Otherwise, it's just "I refuse to use standard syntax" enough to be hailed whether anyone understands it or not. Good work.
Pretty gud to be desu. Style is a little haughty, but that might be fine if you're writing something like a steampunk novel.

It is a bit tedious when he painfully measures his life because he decided to open a door instead of another, but most readers will probably skim over it once they get the picture. Definitely not bad because we understand that's he's a really meticulous/anxious person and it's coming through in the prose.
No one's critiquing it in the other thread, so here's a flash fiction story I wrote:

“Dan, I implore you to see reason. Grok is not who he says he is!”

Dan rolled his eyes as he agonized over which sprinkle-covered donut to take. Kate always seemed to be following him into the greenroom, complaining about this or that. He settled on the pink frosting donut. “Kate, enough of this. Grok is one of Channel Infinity’s most valued employees. In less than three months, he’s risen from a mere intern to a Senior Editor! Talk about dedication.”

Kate resisted the urge to pull her hair out. “Yes, and I have been pointing out every day of those past three months that Grok is clearly an infiltrator from the Terrestrial Alliance’s greatest enemy. How can you not see that he is a Grokian? For Christ’s sake, look at him!”

Both of them turned to observe the eight foot tall, green-skinned, horn-covered editor standing in the corner. He started intently at them while munching on a large bag of potato chips. “Grok feels uncomfortable. Grok feels he should not be hearing this discussion firsthand.”

Dan raised his hand in a placating gesture. “No, no, Grok. You’re fine just where you are.” He turned to face Kate. “You are being incredibly insensitive. Perhaps you owe Grok an apology?”

Kate rubbed her eyes and sighed in exhaustion. “Dan, doesn’t it at least concern you that Grok is physically identical to a Grokian?”

“What about his nose? Grokians don’t have noses.”

“That nose is obviously paper mâché. It isn’t even painted the same shade of green.”

Grok raised a claw in protest. “Kate knows Grok self-conscious about nose discoloration. Grok thinks Kate being deliberately hurtful. Grok would also point out he is from cluster of planets near Grokian system. Much physical resemblance but no affiliation.”

“Ah, see,” Dan said in satisfaction. “He’s from a neighboring planet, just like his work visa says.”

Kate clenched her fists. “A planet that can be found nowhere in the galactic records.”

“Kate, just drop it. Don’t you have a job to be doing?”

“I’m an investigative reporter! Well, I’ve investigated Grok and I’m reporting what I’ve found. Some more findings: Grok is named Grok, the most common personal name, by far, among Grokians-“

“Grok actually popular name galaxy-wide. Grok is very pretty name.”

“-he’s been staying at the station late every night, after everyone has left-“

“Grok very passionate about his work.”

“-and he speaks in the third person, a trademark of Grokian culture!”

“Grok just eccentric.”

>No one's critiquing it in the other thread, so here's a flash fiction story I wrote:

>but i wont critique others to get feedback

>but give me feedback
Kate stamped her foot and looked between Dan and Grok in exasperation. “Dan, please. You know me and you know how meticulous my research is. If you’d just follow me into the editing room, I can show you, frame-by-frame, that Grok has been sneaking subliminal imagery into the newscasts. My theory is that he’s trying to make the Terrestrial citizens passive and compliant in preparation for an impending invasion-“

“Oh, stop it, Kate,” Dan said, waving her off. “I don’t have time for this. You’ll just have to find a way to make nice with Grok. Or lose your job. Your choice.”

He stormed out of the greenroom, leaving Kate in stunned, sullen silence. Grok approached and looked her straight in the eye. “Kate shouldn’t worry. Kate should watch newscast tonight. Grok thinks Kate will find radical new way of looking at things.”

I read through the thread, but I genuinely don't think I'm intelligent enough to critique most of these. This one in particular (>>11414942) is beautifully written, but I don't understand it at all.
I really enjoy this one. It's got a simplicity that makes the words hit a lot harder. The second verse in particular is where I feel like the sentiment really shines through.
Oh, I missed this one.

This is a fucking great one. It paints a colorful picture of suicidal despair without coming across as corny or self-indulgent. A lot of suicidal fiction makes me roll my eyes because of how woe is me it is, but this is something much more grounded and true to real life experience.

>In less than three months, he’s risen from a mere intern to a Senior Editor! Talk about dedication
This never happens at any job ever. Maybe three years would be a meteoric rise.

If this is flash fiction, it's pretty weak. Flash fiction iirc should have a point. The famous "For Sale, Baby Shoes, Never Worn" has an actual climax and twist, something to walk away with once you've read the story. There's no point to this story you've written.

It's like the Rick and Morty Coachferatu bit, but stretched out and with no punchline. If there is supposed to be some punchlines, you need to work on the delivery.

apologies for my first comment, it just annoys me when someone jumps into another thread without giving anyone feedback. If we all tried giving something back, we'd all receive a lot in return.


>pastebin this

i dont know what part of a story this is (if it is meant to be part of a larger whole) but it feels weak. The time frame is impossibly unattainable and feels a collaboration of at least 3 sci-fi cartoons/series that you have jumbled together to show some sort of garbled satire of them all

if you want to write this, i'd either make this into a novella or change the "gag" that you are trying to pull off.

Its not a bad read but if it wasnt for me critiquing, i wouldnt have finished it
Thank you very much. I appreciate the feedback and I have noticed that I tend to have weak buildups/endings.
>This never happens at any job ever. Maybe three years would be a meteoric rise.
Eh...I know someone who went from being a receptionist to a branch manager in literally a few weeks. Crazy things happen.
Oh I see, I missed this part. You should pastebin it next time or say (1/2). I thought the first post was all there was.

That three months line makes more sense now. It still comes off as comedic with no actual punchlines or jokes. If you want this to be funny, you need to work on the delivery. If you want this to be serious, you need to do something about the campy dialogue.
I had intended for the comedy to come from the boss's stubborn obliviousness combined with the alien's almost complete lack of attempt to conceal his identity.

Evidently I didn't do as good of a job as I thought of making this clear, so thank you anons very much.

this. I didnt realise part 2 was there either lmao so ignore the time period one - it could work as a longer whole.


that kinda feels weak as a punchline, unless you are satirising comedy in literature and film in general then fp
Now that I'm thinking about it, I think one of the reasons why this bit doesn't work is because you're satirizing something that doesn't exist. Grokians are not a thing as far as I know and if they are, they're too obscure to use as a reference in the way you're using them.

Like, the reason why the Coachferatu bit works is because it's a throwaway one liner that references something we all know. This takes way too long to build up and as a reader picking this up for the first time, my image of what a Grokian was kept changing too much to stop and think about whether or not this was funny. You need to keep in mind where you're reader is coming from and whether or not you'll be able to make them laugh with a cold open.
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Nin is a rabbit on a pilgrimage
The white sun’s beam,
Amorous for the prim lake,
Dazzles her surface
Like flickering jazz keys

An expanse of crisp,
Stately golf fields
Run about the lake's exterior.

The fields are handsome
Though seldom used for sport.

Mostly, they are only disturbed
By the dejected gaze
Of the stiff waiter
As he passes by
The clear elegant doors
Of the cocktail room.
If my fingers were tapers,
And my palms were sandpaper,
Would it be such a shame
To rub my hands to light a flame?

If by some humungous toil,
My tears were made to bring forth oil,
Would it be so great a sin
To weep and wail for paraffin?

If I could devise some metal tool
To sow my scalp with mounds of wool,
Could I truly be denied
A shear, on time, come April's Ides?

I think, instead, I'd like to start
By plucking out my beating heart,
Replace it with a ticking clock,
To stir my blood with every tock.
--Seit ... Er schloss seinen Mund, musterte das Vorzimmer, als wäre D.F. nicht anwesend. Seine Augen, sie waren schwarz, durchliefen den Raum, rastlos nach Veränderungen suchend, fanden nichts. Alles war gleich. Nichts, seit A.L. gestorben war, die Ananas die kann was, hatte sich verändert. Nichts: der Boden, die Wände, die Decke - alles war gleich, an Ort und Stelle geblieben. Nur schmutziger. Auch das Bild, in Front vor ihm, hing noch an seinem Platz. Kein schönes Bild, kein gutes Bild, es hing, gleich einer Lampe, doch weniger passend, an einem Nagel und bewegte sich keinen Zentimeter weit.
-Seit einem Monat schon. D.F. starrte, glotze förmlich und doch unförmig, wie auch seine Gestalt trotz jahrelangen Trainings noch immer unförmig war. Er glotze also, stierte. Natürlich - was sollte er auch sonst tun? Er war ein Idiot. Er antwortete nicht, dann aber doch. Der Wortlauf seiner Antwort allerdings soll an dieser Stelle ob seiner Belanglosigkeit unerwähnt bleiben - wie auch der Rest dieser Unterhaltung.
Ein viel späterer Zeitpunkt am selben Tag, Stunden sind vergangen, in denen D.F. erst weitergeschlafen und dann wild und willkürlich masturbiert und überdies andere Sachen getan hatte. Der Himmel, vormals bläulichweiß oder weißlichblau, nun nächtlichschwarz. Der graue VW Polo abermals auf dem Zahnarztpraxisparkplatz, diesmal bemannt und zwar nämlich mit seinem Besitzer. Doch was ist ein Mann. Sie hatten sich, so viel sei über die oben beschriebene Unterhaltung noch verraten, verabredet, zu D. Diner zu fahren - begleitet, natürlich, von I.V. und S, quasi als Komplettierung des Quartetts. N.M bildete sich, wie er nichtstuend mutterseelenallein im Polo saß, ein, die Hache zu hören. Eine absurde Vorstellung von offensichtlicher Falschheit. Doch das ist es, was Nichtstun und Alleinsein mit einem anstellen, dachte er sich, schlachtenherrlich, wenn man nicht aufpasst. So stieg er aus. Ließ das Auto im Schein einer Straßenlaterne zurück, ohne es abzuschließen, was sich nicht rächen sollte. D.F. wartete bereits, angezogen neben seiner alltäglichen Kleidung auch mit Schuhen, in denen er seine Schmutzfüße lagerte. Seine Gedanken kreisten - nicht schnell, sondern langsam und mühselig, als wären sie mit Blei beschwert - um nothing in particular but everything in general. Etwa um A.O, aber immer nur von kurzer Dauer. Nach all den Jahren, Jahrzehnten mittlerweile. N.M. überquerte die Straße, D.Fs Silhouette hinter der Fensterscheibe bereits fest im Blick.
Didn't read very far into this one. Lot of really basic formatting errors with the dialogue. And opening with "it's all shit" feels so trite.
“When we first met, you and I, you asked me a question,” he said.“Yes, I did,” she replied with a slight smirk appearing on her face.“We were at a party. I was throwing up in the bathroom and you stumbled in, drunk and quite crazy looking. You asked me what the point of it all was. You said everything hurt. That everything always got messed up, and it was usually your fault. You were crying, hard, and you looked at me and asked me what the point was. And I didn’t know what to say, because I didn’t know. I still don’t know.”She let out a small laugh and bumped his leg with her knee. She took a deep breath and spoke. “You see, when we first met, I was heartbroken. I just got dumped, my mom hated me, I thought I had no one. I didn’t see the point of living, of doing anything anymore,” she told him quietly.“Well what about now?” he questioned.“Well now,” she spoke again, louder this time, “now I’m happy. I have you, my best friend. My mom doesn’t hate me. I haven’t fucked anything up in a while. But it won’t stay like this forever. Because I’m going to mess up again and you’ll hate me and I’ll hate you and then we’ll love each other. Maybe we’ll end up together in the long run or maybe I’ll end up wishing you would drop off the face of the planet. What I’m trying to say is, nothing is permanent. You won’t be happy forever but you also won’t be sad forever. Things are always changing, and you can’t stop them from doing so. The point is, that there is no point. So live however the hell you want to. We’re all destined to the same inevitable ending.”

I found this in my notes. I don’t know what it’s from or where it came from
Working on this for a contest. This is about the first twelfth of it.

I've been writing a satirical romantic comedy web-novel:


I enjoyed reading this. I'll separate the little review into the positives and negatives.

- The whole pig/butcher metanyme is pretty neat
- there is a pretty strong lyrical voice presented here
- the premise is fairly interesting

- You need to replace some commas with periods. The sentences in general are too long.
- The rainbow dipping dots line feels out of place is a dark and serious story
Wrote this one a whim. Want to make it a full, comedic story. Tear my shit up.

Ways My Friends Have Summoned Satan

1. Nicole

When Nicole was 13, she heard from her older brother that the women in the Salem Witch Trials had slept with the Devil and got killed for it. She knew what sex was but didn't really understand it. She'd seen her brother help other boys out of his window on Sunday mornings, and heard her parents through the wall sometimes, but as far as she knew, sex was as complicated and weird as taking communion in church. It made no sense how drinking and bread got you closer to Christ, but she figured the Salem Girls had some similar transaction with our dear Uncle Lucy. Most importantly, they had died, so it had to have happened. Prayer to God, at its core, seemed some kind of trade, so why should prayer to the devil not be exactly the same. Besides, whenever she had prayed, God had been unsatisfactorily, and to be frank, annoyingly quiet.

In between school gossip about first kisses and third base, stories told to her by timid girls huddled around a laptop at night, the many, many showerhead incidents, and a sanitized sex Ed class Ms. Morris delivered, supplemented by catching Juno and Mikey in the gym lockers, Nicole found herself looking at an illustration of Lucifer in a copy of Paradise Lost she found in the library, eyes traversing his wavy hair, fingers tracing his manly chest and chiseled jaw, and getting lost in those beautiful, deepset black eyes.

So she looked up instructions online, drew a lipstick pentagram on her bedroom floor, lit some candles on a 3AM Friday, and, picturing Satan as a handsome and tender young boy, politely asked to be fucked by the devil.

She came to me a week later, rather frustrated, reporting angrily that Satan was a fucking asshole, and had stood her up.
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It had not been a good day for Ito Nakamura. First, the phone call. His mother in hysterics. Something about a car crash and his father. He didn’t feel much of anything, just a numb sense of duty that covered everything like a heavy blanket. He didn’t bother to let his professor know he wouldn’t be in the exam. At least another semester of classes, a triviality.


The cab to the airport. Buying the ticket. Half of his savings. It was going to be a long flight from Boston to Osaka.


He was barely in his fifties, he couldn’t die now. The injustice of it all was almost funny. He had always been a just man, Ito remembered that all too well. The only Christian priest in their district. The mandatory Sundays spent reading what Ito considered fiction. The endless lectures and sermonizing. None of it stuck.


An avowed atheist, Ito had nothing but disdain for his old man. Always guilting him out of all that was fun in life. The girls. The music. The questioning. Everything Ito enjoyed was anathema to his father. “My greatest failure is not passing the faith on to my son”. The arrogance of it all, that was the worst part. The absolute certainty he had in his beliefs made Ito sick.


“CZ4516 to Osaka has been delayed”. Icing on the cake. Mechanical difficulties. A full eighteen hours later and still no takeoff. He phoned the hospital. “He wants to talk to you”. Of course he does. He braced himself, but he wasn’t ready. “Ito...” That voice. That same voice he had heard delivering sermons with the blood and thunder of the Old Testament reduced to this fragile nothing. He said hello. Then it happened. The shrill beeping. The muffled voices of the hospital staff, full of alarm. The old man started speaking Latin at a manic pace. He couldn’t follow. He told him to slow down. The voice stopped.


It's hard for me to track what's going on past the first couple of paragraphs because the tone of the writing doesn't match what you're describing. For example:

>una the first ring is Iao’s sphere, and being just over the welkin, it’s crowded with abstractions dreamt up by bad physicists, and embodiments of trauma that float up from the sublunary realm when someone is burned, born, &c. These latter are bits of flame that hang about lanterns and lampposts and, much like infants, just scream and scream in agony all day.

This sounds like a hellish landscape from your description of it, but it reads like a casual, humdrum, almost flippant observation. I'm of the opinion that you need to spoonfeed the reader a little more, cue us in to how we're supposed to feel about this landscape you're describing.

There's a lot of clashing imagery that's hard to imagine (sky like Dipping Dots, smell of sewage, ground groaning like a child) which, while fine on a line-by-line, is hard for me to imagine as a whole. Like I had to stop and think about how all of these things you're listing can go together and it's really difficult to track in my imagination. Perhaps it's because this underworld you're describing has no reference the audience can lean on, being entirely unique.

There's also a ton of exposition and not a lot of action. The easiest part to read was the beginning because it's easy to imagine this person struggling to get out of shackles. Maybe less exposition and more description through action, rooting us in the world through a perspective (ie 'When I stepped on the floor, it cried like a baby and gaped open like a black hole' instead of 'Once in every while, this new firmament groaned like a child, and the blotches of color dispersed in darting patterns, like a startled school of guppies, to reveal a black hole that shat a torrent of rain.')

These are just my opinions. Interesting premise.
The short, choppy sentences give a sense of urgency, but not if the entire section is nothing but. I'm also not entirely sure what those all-caps lines are. Are those texts? If so, cue us in, say Ito looks at his phone and reads, "COME. HOME. NOW." Right now, it could either be a text message or the words forming in his guilty conscience.

I'm also not digging the whole calling your father arrogant while he's dying. Doesn't seem like a natural reaction, unless Ito is a complete asshole. That sort of drama should either be established before this dramatic scene or during the aftermath. Where this information is placed, it makes Ito look like a complete jerkoff.
Imo, frontload the punchline so we're cued into the fact this is comedic writing. Say something like "When Nicole was 13, she told me that Satan was a fucking asshole because he stood her up." That lets the reader know they're going to read something humorous and sets the tone for the rest of the passage.

Not a comedy writer so can't comment much on technique.
>not ground
My bad, didn't read that properly. Point still stands, it'd be a lot easier to imagine if we saw the world through the eyes of a person instead of through exposition.
Kind of hesitant to post anything in these threads because my story has a somewhat odd but specific setting thats a but difficult to explain easily.
Maybe this isn't the place to ask, but is there any good advice on properly establishing a unique setting?
My opinion is no matter how unique the world is, you should be able to interact with it using the five senses. Use a fish out of water character as a stand-in for the audience. Have that character ask basic questions for the audience's benefit. Make him inspect something that residents of that world would consider mundane, ie dipping his finger in the chocolate fountain and cautiously tasting it to confirm it is, indeed, chocolate.

You don't have to reveal everything about the world all at once and, indeed, it's actually more fun if you don't. Only reveal details about the world as needed.
Any and all criticisms welcomed and much appreciated. Thanks in advance

The human mind does weird things when faced with its own immediate death. It was like he was sitting at the edge of a cliff, legs dangling over a great abyss. Everything becomes sharp, he could to make out every single small minuscule detail from the smallest of creases in peoples suits to the most minuscule of ridges on the drinks he was carrying.

Red was not a fan of this new feeling. He had never felt it before in his life. In fact, he had prided himself on the fact that he could face death in the eyes and smile. And yet here he was, desperately trying to keep his composure.

There was a magnet right behind him shouting, trying to pull him back to the world of the safe, the world of the living. Every single atom in his body screaming at him to just leave, to turn around and run.

He told that voice to shut it, clenched his jaw and walked forward a with a kick in his step.

Red made his way down the red carpet, trying to act like a waiter when all the training he had amounted to spending a single night reading books about it at the library really was driving him insane. He had to constantly adjust the tray in his hand while trying to duck past the sea of people in suits and dresses around him. If he made a single mistake, a single spill could see his entire plan fall apart. He would get found out. After all, he wasn’t supposed to be here.

This was one of the most exquisite and exclusive events in the city. An event of grandness for only the most elite of the elite. For the 1% of the 1%. A child of his standing would never even get a chance to even catch a single glimpse of a place like this.

After all not many people get to be part of a meeting between the most powerful heads of state, generals, and oligarchs disguised with the thin veil of calling it a museum exposition. A museum exposition 25, 000 feet above the ground in what amounted to a flying mansion.

He walked through a large open arch and his eyes searched. It should be here. They scanned the horizon, grazing over the art pieces that were worth more than he could make in a lifetime and vases with intricate patterns that had an amount of effort put into them that Red could not comprehend, down to the smallest brush stroke. Over the ornate daggers and rifles that seemed much to impractical his eyes finally locked onto a faint glimmer.

If he does that, there won't be much of a story left to tell, friendo
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I'm not sure if this is meant to sound retarded but it absolutely does. Maybe it's up to the tier of harlequin novels at the drugstore.
This is well-written word salad. I think too literary though. Too many adjectives, too poetic. Your character doesn't so much seem alive to me as he does a vessel through which you project your intellect. Maybe other people would enjoy it, but I can't relate.
It slightly bothers me that the first line of each stanza doesn't rhyme with anything
seems really vapid to me, i'd drop it almost immediately.
I like it, good management of syllables and adjectives. I feel bad for the waiter.
The style of this poem is a bit more archaic than usual, the repetition could be weary to some.
Ha, I like the punchline. The excerpt was short enough for me to remain invested in it without becoming bored. But in case you decide to expand this story, you should know that 13 year olds aren't really this naive anymore. It's hard to suspend disbelief for so long.

I've written down the first 1600 words of my novel here, pls review:
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"who is she?" she asked, handing me back the picture
"i... i...
stopping for a long breath, tears swelling up in my eyes, i looked down
"I'm unable to say her name without crying"
tears rolled down my cheeks. and she noticed them. even the shadows cast on my face by the lamp couldn't hide my sorrow
a moment of silence
the dimly lit room which i used to call my home felt both alien and familiar, both large and small, even after such little time sine i hsd left
she sat cross legged on the bed and looked back at me, our eyes meeting despite the deep shame that would usually make me avert then
another long pause
the faint memory of her voice was still in my head, the way dhe said my name, the way she smiled, the feelong of her weight on my lap
all those things that made me feel good in a way i hadn't felt for a long time. a real long time
"hey guys, it's time for dinner!" he shouted down the hall
and with that simple gesture the moment was broken, the silence was gone, and the wall, my wall, was raised again
i liked it, keep going

Punctuation, spellcheck, and especially capitals. Can't say much until you get at least that sorted.
sorry, written right now on my mobile, I'll fix it later
A diary entry from the year 2070:

"Score of the year: authentic Proxy Paige catheter bag, 2030 stamp, 86 Monero.

If only pawpaw could see my collection now."
It all builds up to a Despacito pun so I'm pretty sure it's just a complete jerkoff.

>It was like
It felt like?

I feel like the first and second sentences should be connected more in someway. Perhaps a semi-colon.

>Everything becomes
Became? I was slightly aware of the tense change.

>he could to make out

>in peoples suits
I'd also consider using a more specific word other than just people. They aren't just people but rich people. Perhaps change suits with tuxedos.

Coca-cola or Chardonney? Needs more concrete.

For the first paragraph, my intial impression was that he's looking down on a crowd of people like from a balcony or similar, due to the cliff analogy.

You said everything becomes sharp, but you've only mentioned his vision. Could also mentioned the weight of the silver tray he's holding, that his waiter's uniform is tight and comfortable (inferring he's not used to it), the smell of wealth, etc.

>desperately trying to keep
desperate to keep

>a magnet right behind him shouting
I understand the meaning but felt too much dissonance; magnet don't shout and it makes a weird mental image picturing it.

>There was a magnet
Try to remove the 'There was/were's when possible. They're meaninglessly vague trash words. (Right behind him a magnet was shouting...)

>sea of people in suits and dresses around him
People, suits, and dresses are too vague. Maybe throw in some Rolex or diamonds, or specifically describe one or two of the people he's dodging to infer their offensive wealth. Maybe make him recogise some faces / names.

>He would get found out. After all, he wasn’t supposed to be here.
This is way too direct. The reader wants to and should figure it out himself from inferred hints. Otherwise it's like doing a quiz with the answers already on the question paper; there's no point.

>This was one
This was. Kill it.

>A child
I assumed he was a man. I wouldn't think a child would be hired as a waiter, especially not for a high-class event which would hire the most expensive and experienced.

>After all not many people
You used 'after all' to start two sentences. It has a distinct voice to it and I became very aware of it on the second use. The first time I felt it was for effect, the second time I'm aware of you as the author since I'm guessing this is part of your natural speech squeezing into the prose.

>his eyes searched.
>They scanned the horizon
You don't need to mention his eyes at all. You don't even need to mention him looking either. Just describe the objects and the reader will assume he's looking at them since it infers his attention is on them.

I understand what you're going for by 'scanned the horizon' but it isn't working. It gives me the impression he's looking out a window.

>25, 000


>museum exposition
This isn't wrong but I feel like it should be exhibition. Probably just my personal bias. Regarding this whole paragraph, it's all exposition. The museum exposition should be inferred by people looking at art pieces. That the people are rich and powerful should have been naturally inferred earlier. As for the flying mansion, have him look out a window and briefly describe the world 25,000 feet below.

>down to the smallest brush stroke
This feels disconnected from the other sentences. Remove it or connect it with something.

In terms of overall style, be careful of 'there was' openings and sometimes you use vague nouns. One major thing is that you use far too many continuous verbs. Try to stick to simple past tense unless the action in question is actually long and drawn out. Do a ctrl-f search on your work for 'ing' and rephrase some.

>trying to pull him back
>trying to duck past
> trying to keep his composure
>trying to act like a waiter

Bro. Dude. Bad habit you need to eliminate.

The last thing to mention is that I think you haven't used a single contraction. You should basically contract every word you possibly can unless you're going for a specific intentional effect (super formal butler voice, etc.)

he had -> he'd
was not -> wasn't

This problem has been torturing me for a year. You've just got to introduce little aspects of it as slowly as possible in piecemeal. You need the plot to be carefully designed in a way that the protagonist will be ecountering world-building events at very specific times and evenly spread throughout the whole story. If the story is forcing you to info dump the reader (and devastate your pacing) it needs to be adjusted.

As the other anon said, introducing an everyman is the easy way out.

Thank you very much for the corrections. Also good point on that habit, that was something i hadn't noticed. I'll take them to heart. Thanks for taking the time to write all that up.
My step-father’s placid tread across
the whining wood panels
behind my closed bedroom door
is the only soft sound of morning
I would like to release from
my mother’s home.

I really liked it. Easy, pleasant reading. Very readable.

>My path lays before me.
My path lies before me? Lie / lay have different meanings, though given the style of writing lay actually sounds better.

>for a spring of mana is said to be
was said to be? Tense change distracted me.

>And he made it out of desert alive.
Out of -the- desert. Missing article.

Glad I could help. You could also try integrating semicolons, colons and dashes and such to vary your sentences connections, but I'd focus on the other stuff first.

>his waiter's uniform is tight and comfortable
I meant to say uncomfortable.

idc about feedback, i just wanna know what the fuck this is from
Would like some feedback on this, not sure how effective the writing style is but it was just something I riffed with last night:

Melancholy note
Of a poem wrote
Under sunlight
And green leaves
A day so bright
The hum of its breeze
It greives the night
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I'll do a crit-for-crit with anyone. I'm open to feedback on any of the fiction here:


Preferably, the story in the pic. It's only 330 or so words.
Just so I don't freeload...

This was fairly good. Your writing style sort of reminds me of my own. I would recommend toning down your usage of adjectives and adverbs. Deploy verbs with more precision. "Penetrating at last" and phrases like that come off as strange and disruptive to most normal readers. Err on the side of plain language whenever possible.

Couldn't finish. If it's flash fiction we need to be more invested in Kate and Grok from the get-go. There wasn't any hook for me.

I like this. Reminds me of Noah Cicero a bit. I recommend staying contemporary with your diction. Keep it "cool", like the subject matter. That means excising or revising the phrase "upon the stage" and "rather ceremoniously"

This read like song lyrics. If you're in high school, then it's fine. If not, I recommend reading more contemporary poetry. Read more in general. You'll ameliorate by osmosis.

I enjoyed this. You should expand this into a multi-stanza piece.
I dilly in the dallydingingom of days
Dancing on a daffodilic dwam
Duly duplexed and dringing, drowly
Drowsily draping dingledecked dales

Through dredges of dongles I dingdongingdangle
Dipping and dripdripping as dreamlight dimdims
Dazily dincott with deadnecks and diffdock
Dazzling daisies dividing divine
I generally like this, and the ending you posted on your site is cute. However, even with the ending it feels incomplete and not worth very much on its own, and I struggle to imagine how the all dialogue format would hold up in a longer piece. If it is a part of something bigger I'd be interested in reading it, you are pretty skilled at treading the line between believable and compelling dialogue.
Gimicky, some of the words are too cutesie for adults and some are too pretentious for children. There is very little continuity between lines and the made up words feel like "gotchas" when the reader struggles to pronounce them. Overall very bad.

Hunting in the woods for thee
Zephyr drags me all around
Hunting in the woods for me
I come to rest - where I'm found
I searched for - I search
For a phantom one

A task I had - a maiden's hand
Promised me - to chase and find
For this huntress bathing
A deer of golden kind
A lock of hair she gave me
And warned me off my quest

This hair a string of bow
A box I put my heart and hand
Her hair to keep - my soul
A dragon thing - golden lamb
This hydra's me I guess
The box I hold - to my chest

To Psyche and Cupid I prayed
And Cupid gift this bow
From horn and hair he made
But she's never where I go
I've been lost - lost for ages
Growing gray - gray in stages

Hunting dogs my only friends
I've become a monstrous thing
In the woods I murder men
A horrid bandit king
Stag horns crown my beastly head
Perhaps I'll woo - rage instead

Huntress - one more cup of wine?
Lytta - dog capped one - Lytta
Mania - in a box I place my mind
I break my bow - on my knee!
This must end or must end me
The hunting dogs barked - Atë!

And so a nearby polis I attack
Many more in Beotia I burned
And let loose dogs of war
Until in time on me they turned
Mad dogs shall consume a city whole
Hungry still they ate the soul

With rage in heart I burn
Burned an aedes down
Heart's own sacred temple
In the center of the town
I, defiled, defile defiant
Naught left but ashes, cold and silent

And so rabid dogs - chase me mad
Lost in woods without my map
One last choice I had
A pit I fall - a hunter's trap
I break my leg and
On heart's own bow string hang

Some say Hermes is the god of poems
But assuredly it is a god of love
From heaven's heights spring thunder
But the heart beats louder than sky above
By Cupid's grace none of me remains
Save lyre strings and these staves

Posting crit in a bit.

1. I dilly IN the DALlyDINGingom OF days
2. DANcing ON a DAFfoDIlic DWAM
3. DUly duPLEXED and DRINging, DROwly
4. DROWsiLY draPING dingleDECKED dales

5. THROUGH dredges OF dongles I dingdongINGdangle
6. DIPping and DRIPdripping AS dreamlight DIMdims
7. DAZily DINCott with DEADnecks and DIFFdock
8. DAZZling DAISies diVIDing diVINE

This is how I scanned the poem. It sort of looks to me lie you started aiming for simple trochaic metre (stressed, unstressed) but then slipped into dactylic metre (stressed, unstressed, unstressed). Note that some people pronounce dazzling as dazzle-ling.
Thanks, I appreciate the response. I think I will expand it a bit. But not by much, because, you're right, it won't hold up as a full length story. Or I'll change the styling for the remaining section of the story and write it with conventional descriptive paragraphs.
The sun-baked air in my sedan
Courses through my sweat-soaked pits
Rustling the bags and wrappers
Strewn upon the floor mats.

This parking lot and hospital hums
and harbors life, coming and going.
Announcing birth, the intercom
plays Brahms’ Lullaby, the Kenny G rendition,
and per instinct, hangs silent at the dawn of death.
This is >>11415087
Thanks for the critique. I'm actually trying a different style that's far more understated than my more familiar, long-winded style, and I have been trying to pay particular attention to my usage of verbs/adverbs. Guess I got more work to do.

Anyway, I noticed you're into powerlifting. My dude. I haven't competed, nor do I plan to, but I've been doing strength training for the last couple of years. Were you the dude claiming a 485 squat in a /fitlit/ thread on /fit/ a week or so ago?
I've seen eternity
In her eyes
More than once,
But not since then,
Those days haunt me now
Free, I'll be once more.
Whose wood this is
I think you know
Faggot, coz'
You've had it in your
Mouth before.

They can definitely be toned down a bit.

Keep at it. I should probably change that. I don't really powerlift or compete at all anymore. That wasn't me. My best squat below parallel was 465 and deadlift was 501. Although that doesn't surprise me. I know several /lit/-type bodybuilders and powerlifters.
Sorry, but this seems very derivative and weak to me. Your rhyme structure and metre get way off the rails in many places and it only seems due to sloppiness. Your allusions and classical references feel phoned in and impersonal. The overall vibe I get is something taking itself too seriously and being very under-developed.
A little something I've been working on. I'd really like any sort of constructive criticism, I'm trying to refine my writing
I'd get rid of the rhyme with the first two lines.
I also don't know what you mean by 'The hum of its breeze.' I'd use something like the rustling of leaves, or a cicada buzz.

>It greives the night
is a 10/10 line. The rest is just ok.
You should submit this to a science-fiction magazine, they will eat this shit up. It's fucking garbage though.
he no longer can
Do whatever magazines that are still in print even know that 4chan exists? I can't imagine they'd be savvy enough to track this down.
If it's been published before, they won't accept it. only under rare circumstance do they forgo that rule. That's why I told him to Pastebin his posts.
That's what the other person was saying. He can no longer submit the story because it IS technically published. Most if not all journals will not accept a piece even if it's been published on Facebook or a blog or ANYWHERE.
high effort crit, nice man

good but i can't enjoy a poem written in 2018 that's stuffed with anachronistic language.
We real cool. We
Left school. We

Lurk late. We
Strike straight. We

Sing sin. We
Thin gin. We

Jazz June. We
Die soon.
great job gwendolyn
thanks for the feedback!
I think I'm going to keep 'lays', even though 'lies' is more correcter.
This is pretty good. I particularly liked these two lines

>This parking lot and hospital hums
>and harbors life, coming and going

I kinda wish the rest of the poem was at the quality of these lines. It would make it go from "pretty good" to great.
I think this would work better with an additional hard-hitting line (or probably two) between "But not since then" and "Those days haunt me now". Something that really solidifies the transition.

Still, a very solid poem imo.
The Awakening of Progeny

Nightly sounds of nightmare wonder
sharply crack and quickly carry
echoes filled with booming thunder
past the deserts, seas, and prairies

Lightning strikes the throbbing, shifting
mountains, causing rootly shaking;
Rainstorms twist and swirl, now lifting
floods from ground, foundations quaking

Waters loose and fall with cleansing
freshness, wiping filth and birthing
newly forming offspring; tensing,
growing life the storm's unearthing!
Slipped through crevice high
Alone alive was I
Though only for the fall
Free from father's bind
One last senseless call
Then thought alone was mine
And think I did for long
As skin turned red and wrong
One last thought was mine:
I am forever lost from eyes
I like this, especially the last line. "sweat-soaked pits" is a bit of a stumble, though. I would cut it to two syllables.

Nice, but "Alone alive was I" sounds a bit antiquated, doesn't it?

Pretty nice. The formatting is reminiscent of a mix between McCarthy and Krasnohorkai
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The last of hope I hold at hand
and squeeze the glimmer faint
Though her words are not maligned
They turn my flesh to paint

Or maybe they peel my flesh as paint, not sure--thats the allusion I had in mind when I scrawled it
not so fast--
a penny breaks--
there'll be no close

(deck's been giving)

40602, that was the number said
when all the captain's sighs on Chesapeake
lifted some slutty vagrant's piece

"her lips, vermilion
shoulder exposed
ripped tendons on the outside
featherdust, liz
ornella on the outer peaks her pearls
her bed of swooping

sometimes i miss it the stopping of a lifespan
the rocking, the rocking
the metal getting warm

sometimes i wish i never shook that hand
i could've crushed her bones i could've...

liz ornella was the captain's son
corporal, major, seamen's shanty
blown away by the outside, torn into the bottom
that perfect nickel underneath
that rocking, that rocking
that tethered fleeting thoughts
homebreaker wedding was always on the dinner table:
shrimp a la mode, and no wine to go with it
Thank you anon. I was about to give up writing because I thought I was shit.
This gives me hope.
I really like this one.
I finally gathered the motivation to write a second verse for this, but I'm not that sure about the
>An Deutschland’s neustem Kriegesschiff
part. I think I messed up the genus of "An" and "neustem".
Als das Schlachtschiff von den Werften
Rollte in das blaue Meer
Und mit salzig kalten Wellen
Spritzte auf das Menschenheer

Die da kamen um zu staunen
An Deutschland’s neustem Kriegesschiff
Mit Champagner, mit Posaunen
Zur See! Es tönt ein letzter Pfiff

Als der Krieg fing an zu toben
Bei Denmark’s enger Meeressund
Schoss das Schiff in weitem Bogen
Patronen flogen Stund’ nach Stund’
This anyone? Safe
wrote my first two poems last night. they are pretty lame (rhyming cry with die, how original) but it's a start.

>This has to stop
This cannot go on any further
It's been way too much already
Even if we could turn it around
I know the results won't be pretty
It hurts to even think about
The current state of this
How the thing we shared and cared for
Drops way down in the abyss
Spiraling down, getting faster
Issues getting bigger
It's not my fault, not even yours
We sit there, watch and snicker
Was it bad luck or on purpose?
It won't make a change
I'm sure you know it as well as me
This thing is out of range
Please don't get upset or angry
I don't want to see you cry
Some things can be fixed again
The others will just die

>Pretty face
Pretty face, pretty face
Wide eyes filled with doubts
Pretty face, pretty face
All over my thoughts
Lush eyes running over me
Looking for a clue
What could turn me on again
When turning off is due?
Pretty face, pretty face
Breaths getting faster
Pretty face, pretty face
I won't be getting past her
Your fingers running over me
Short nails painted pink
My fingers running over you
Perfectly in sync
Pretty face, pretty face
You fill me with glee
Pretty face, pretty face
Why are you doing this to me?
Bodies moving in unison
Temporary unity
I tried to resist but I couldn't
Pass the opportunity
Pretty face, pretty face
We have gone too far
Pretty face, pretty face
In the backseat of my car
Reads like shitty pop song lyrics, really bad
Yeah, that's exactly what I thought too. I have to find some other subject matter than hoes.

Pretty good. For whatever reason "the Kenny G rendition" bugs me because the line feels oddly colloquial in a mix of pretty heavily poetic language. Not sure if you feel the same way but I suggest maybe finding a different way to address that?
As they walked through the deep woods, a second forest of mushrooms grew ahead of them in anticipation. When they came upon these growths, Mick made sure to tell the group to avoid stepping on them at all costs.
“Ye’ll be wishin' ye hadn’t, yuh. Cunnin’ thin’s don’t much like lettin’ go!” Mick chuckled to himself.
Jack didn’t see how stepping on a mushroom could cause any serious harm through the thick hiking boots they all wore, but he was careful all the same. Soon after this thought, the danger revealed itself.
Gomez, the intern Jack had internally noted as “Unsure If Valuable, Likely Not”, let out a scream. He didn’t heed Mick’s warning and had inadvertently trodden on one of the bright orange-spotted shrooms. Instead of crushing underfoot, it stood strong and went right through the bottom of his boot, and right into his foot. The once then cap then opened wide, like a fishhook holding onto its prey.
“Ow! It’s got my foot! What the fuck is this?!” Gomez cried as he tried to wriggled his foot free to no avail.
“Shrum. Told yer not to step on ‘em, didn’t I?.”
“Told yer.” Mick added calmly. “Not much ta do now but let ‘er finish up. We best be movin’n on.”
“Finish up?” Gomez replied, his voice trembling with panic. “Finish up what? What’s it doing to me?!”
“Ettin.” With this Mick spit on the ground.
Gomez’s eyes bulged and he wiggled harder, causing a shooting pain to run up his leg. He yelped.
“You ass, can’t you cut him free?!” Jane pleaded.
“Take longer ta cut ‘im free than fer ‘er ta drain ‘im dry!” Mick howled in laughter.
Jane rolled her eyes, drew her knife, and walked over to Gomez, careful to avoid the dangerous mushrooms. She knelt down and tried to work at the stem of the feeding shroom. No matter how many times she sliced back and forth, no cut was made.
“What the hell is this made of?!” Jane cried in frustration.
“Shrums.” Mick said with a smile.
Not the anon who wrote that, but I think it's really good. That jarring line compared to the rest of it drives the point home I think.
From light of day to darkening night
You are ever there before me
Present in the text I read
That spring from fingers small and strong

Like the silver on the web
Of spiders weaving on and on
And marrow in the bones that creak
With age, and stress, and life unfettered

There you sit within my breast
A sparrow singing softly dear
The coming of the dawn in night
The blooming of the seedling bare

The spark that sets the world aflame
The crinkle in the spotless glass
That bursts into anointed shards
Of you, and me, and everything

This is my favourite in the thread. Paints a vivid picture easily, reaches for both the mundane and the transcendent, beyond any formal critique it makes me feel something which is more than most contemporary poetry.

I agree with >>11425605, the Kenny G line is essential.
I see you perched on the edge of the dumpster
Your white head
And cruel eyes turn to me from across the rotten air
As you loose your dusty call
In me live the memories of the sighing grey sea
And trolley bells at dawn
And greasy food from roadside stands
And cigarette butts lost in the sand
And motel AC set too high
As you loose your dusty call
My thoughts fade as seafood
Returning me here
Under the putrid sun
I had a dream about her again last night. We were lying in bed, naked and cuddling in anamnesis of how much we reminded ourselves of each other. When I awoke, I added it to my growing pile forgotten dreams. It's nights like these...
Wtf I posted a critique and no one critiqued my own work.

Pls read this and tell me what you think:

Synopsis: Fifty years ago, an incurable disease spread that caused 75% of newborns to be female. Now the year is 2070, men are second-class citizens, and political tensions run high. Mysterious incidents compel a young gymnast to investigate the tyrannical Lysistratan government.
The genus is right but the preposition is wrong if you wanted to say that they are in awe because of the ship. Man staunt ÜBER etwas aber nicht an etwas. Other than that it's pretty good, impressive even for a non-native speaker. The only thing that sounds odd is "neustes Kriegsschiff" because it sounds too modern and not like something out of a ballad. But good stuff, nonetheless, keep on writing. I'd appreciate it if you were to critique my excerpt, too (strg f letzte in this thread to find it)

This >>11417169 is my post
>If he does that, there won't be much of a story left to tell, friendo

Effective comedy writing has multiple jokes per paragraph. Look at the beats in A Hitchhiker's Guide, for example:

>Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the western spiral arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun. Orbiting this at a distance of roughly ninety-two million miles is an utterly insignificant little blue green planet whose ape-descended life forms are so amazingly primitive that they still think digital watches are a pretty neat idea.

>This planet has - or rather had - a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movement of small green pieces of paper, which was odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.

>And so the problem remained; lots of the people were mean, and most of them were miserable, even the ones with digital watches.

Now I know it's not fair comparing an amateur to Douglas Adams, but consider the density of jokes in what are basically the first three paragraphs of his novel. With comedic writing, you have 0 delivery. You can't rely on your affectations for the humor. Thus, a lot of good comedic novels have a higher density of jokes than what you'd see in a comedy skit, for example.

If that one joke is all the writer has, it probably won't work out.
Hark ser Pavel, and good day,
My Christian name is CIA.

We journeyed to the meeting zone,
But the doctor was not alone.

I fear doctor this party ends,
Our deal did not include your friends.

Nay agent, you are incorrect.
These men do not my life protect.

Worry not, ser CIA.
For these men you need not pay.

Good ser, I plainly fail to see,
What use these men would be to me.

Well agent, these hooded knaves,
Nearly put us in our graves.
They laid in wait to spring their trap,
Ser Pavel they aimed to kidnap.
The rogue who set them on their task,
Was the man who wears the mask.

Surely you do not mean Bane?
Alright, embark upon our plane.
Our Lords in Langley I'll notify,
That with the doctor we now fly.

Hark now, knaves, and listen well,
For you may soon end up in Hell.
The first of you to knowledge share,
Will stay with us safe in the air.

Tell me man, and tell me true,
The name of he who hired you,
To take the Doctor from his home,
And carry him to place unknown.

...Will you not speak? The you shall die,
"Not good" 's how I'd describe you fly.
The next among you I shall ask:
Bane! Why does he wear the mask?

Your silence is both strange and bold,
For one who fights for naught but gold.

Perhaps the man does simply wonder,
Why, before you'd throw him yonder,
You would shoot him in the head,
And cast him out when he is dead.

Finally a man here who can speak,
You may be the one I seek.
Tell me this: what is your name?
Lest you suffer a fate the same.

It matters not, dear CIA.
It did not matter until the day,
I set my mind upon my task,
And donned my distinctive mask.

If I removed, with my fair hand,
the mask that has become your brand,
Would forth the maw of death creep,
and bring about eternal sleep?

An action such as that would be
painful to an extreme degree.

But the pain that would ensue,
could surely be endured by you,
For after all, I clearly see,
A man of grander build than me.

It seems you have mistaken it,
it won't be I that bites the bit!
Painful times are sure ahead
but not for me - for you, instead.

Surely Bane you had not planned,
To end up captive in my hand?

Of course dear man, now here I am.
I shall unveil my master plan.
The Doctor's aid we had sought,
But in with you he threw his lot.
With my own eyes I had to see,
What knowledge he had shared with ye.

Nothing, I have not told them a word,
To think otherwise would be absurd.

Ser Bane it seems you are now here,
Pray, dear ser, lend me your ear,
And allow me, if it pleases you,
to ask what you intend to do.
So tell me, if you even can,
what's the next step in your master plan?

My plan, you see, is quite insane
For I intend to crash this plane
To send it falling from the sky
So all aboard will surely die!

NAY! You cannot do this Bane!
For I am the lord of this plane!

Hold up, brother - you stay here,
We cannot all just disappear
One of us must stay in the plane,
But your death shall not be in vain.

Tell me, brother, if it pleases you,
Of the ravaging fire that we pursue.
Is it small and calm and unexcited,
Or is kindled, warm and ignited?

The mighty flame for which you die,
Is burning hot and rising high.
Pray doctor, 'tis not the time for fear!
Such time has yet to draw near.
Hell is a place of strange happenings. Fire nor Void nor Damnedest Cold be that censor by which we'd suffocate (as I had been taught in that despotic Cathedral those eons before), nor had I thought the Daemon and his kin might be so morosely inanimate. Hell, as would be made apparent by the un-flayed skin and lack of dinning screams, was in fact all-together boring. Drab to dreary to melancholy grey; perhaps even a bit pretty at times, to waste those eternal evenings away by the shallow pond and ashen trees.

Until, of course, we found THE PIT.

Being labeled as such, one might suspect THE PIT, given such inflammatory capitalization, would be an object made of immediate interest in the muted presence of Hell Proper, but it was not so. At first glance, THE PIT would indeed be nothing more than an uncommonly deep, wet hole in the ground, and at a strained view might yield itself as a nice spot in which to commit a brief suicide.
cut down on needless descriptive words and leave room for the readers imagination. good sense of dialogue.keep the storyline in broad view as ur writing stream of consciously
Pretty damn good, like the dialogue. Not much to critique here, except this line:
>The once then cap then opened wide, like a fishhook holding onto its prey.

Just simplify it to:
>The cap opened wide and snagged onto his boot, like a fishhook holding onto its prey
I like it. You got the atmosphere described pretty well, especially in the first 5 sentences. It gets a bit heavy on the adjectives later.
Is this part of a short story o you're writing?
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Here's the most recent half of a short story I'm working on. I tried applying previous critiques from this site to the writing in this half.

Any comment is appreciated

Reading this is genuinely difficult and requires forced effort to go through for a number of reasons.

It's almost 1,200 words in one paragraph without a single break. Sentences are thoughts, paragraphs are groups of related thoughts. We can only relate so many thoughts together before we lose track of them, so we help the reader by breaking them up into paragraphs. You haven't done this, I suspect for style purposes, but it makes it hell to read and follow what's going on.

Second is the lack of mental imagery. Gun, for example, is quite possibly the most meaningless word you could use to describe a gun, other than saying weapon. What gun? Pistol? Rifle? A glock 18c? A Barret M82? M249? Those are all guns, and all very different. I know it's a pistol since he sticks it in his trousers, but I don't know until then. Use specific words, not vagues one. Needs more concrete.

>The engine started with a rumble and he took off
'he drove off'.

>The engine started with a rumble and he took off and as he was driving he tried to remain very calm and had to remind himself to breath but he kept glancing in the rearview mirror and he wasn’t sure if the car two cars behind, the red one with the dark windows, he wasn’t sure if it was following him because he’d been driving for a bit now and it had been following him ever since the roundabout and it was strange because this was quite a specific route that not many people took and so the likelihood of them both going the same exact way was slim, and so he tried to shake them off by going left instead of right and then down the little cul-de-sac with the nice bungalows.

This sentence is way too long, and the thoughts within aren't even entirely related from one to the other, it desperately needs breaking up. I get that your going for a stream of conciousness effect but I can't follow it.

>put his seatbelt on and started the engine. The engine started with a rumble

Why do I, as the reader, need to know that he put his seatbelt on? The information is useless. If he's getting into a car to drive it, the reader will automatically imagine him putting the belt on since the readers know people do that.

The starting of the engine and the rumble are completely connected together, but you seperated them absolutely with a full stop. This is the sort of thing that is making your writing very tiring for me to read, I have to constantly stop and figure out what idea is connected or not connected to what other idea and how they are related. As the reader, I shouldn't have to do it, since the writer should be being it for me to make the writing effortless to read.

I can't go through the rest, but there isn't a single line of dialogue or internal dialogue. There doesn't always need to be, but for what you are trying to do here you should be writing his thoughts. It's like a 3rd person stream-of-conciousness except without any conciousness, and it's really weird.

>With the doors open the previously boisterous noise of the crowd fell to a hushed murmur as, one by one, eager patrons streamed through the building’s narrow gothic doors and into the spacious gallery.
The boisterous noise of the crowd fell to a hushed murmur as the doors opened and eager patrons streamed into the spacious gallery as they admired and gave comment on the gothic architecture.
Perhaps something like that. Your use of 'previously' suggests that the crowd was already quiet before they fell to hushed mumur. The most important part of a sentence, it's focus, should be placed at the very start of the sentence, it's what you want the reader to think about first. The doors aren't the important subject, the crowd is.

>He was soon approached by a portly man
Passive sentence. The focus is on the portly man. 'A portly man in a red suit approached him, his arm linked...'

>current paintings all while scanning
The 'all' here bothers me slightly, not sure why. I didn't naturally flow through it while reading. Maybe a connective issue. Perhaps drop the all, or go with 'while he scanned'. Not sure, but the flow wobbles here.

>a middle aged woman
Middle-aged. Hyphen.

>small groups of people peppered
Remove 'of people'. You don't need to tell me they are groups of people, the laughter wouldn't come from anything else.

>their musings charging the air with a sort of academic electricity
Love the metaphor, but remove 'sort of'. Narrator voice shouldn't be telling the reader that things are 'sort of', or 'rather', or 'kinda'. The reader needs solid images, those vaguenesses get in the way.

>room ; a ten by ten foot square of pitch black canvas
Semicolons link two complete sentences, but your sentence after the semicolon isn't a complete sentence, it's a phrase that explains the noun at the end of the previous sentence. For that you should use a colon or a dash. Dashes add more emphasis / seperation, but I'd use a colon for that connection. I'd also rework the previous sentence so that the 'piece' comes right at the end, immediately before the colon and the explanation of what the piece is.

>The piece’s crowd of onlookers
Remove 'piece's'. That the onlookers are looking at the piece is obvious via context. It also suggests that the piece is a main focus of the sentence, when the crowd is what the sentence is about.

>the revenue that were sure
revenue that was / revenues that were.

> “Me?” Gunter asked puzzledly. “What on earth for?”
I know Gunter is speaking from context, I know he's asking because there is a question mark, and I know he's puzzled based on how he responds. I'd remove the whole attributive here, it just distracts and gets in the way without telling me anything I hadn't already figured out myself. Also, never use adverbs after an attributive unless it's critical to meaning.
>"I love you too," he said lovingly.
>"I love you too," he said coldly.
Adds meaning.

Have to stop there for now.
I'm trying to git gud at writing dialogue for a game. I'm not sure I'll be able to pull it off in my lifetime and I feel like there is no point in developing a that skill when there are much more talented people than me that might do it for a reasonable fee. I feel the same regarding music and 3D art/assets as a whole. To me, it makes sense to focus on gamedev.

How would I hire someone to, given a plot, write the dialogue for it? Locating musicians, 3D artists seems straight forward enough, but writers, not so much. Any advice?


>Gunter reached the stairwell and briskly made his way up, taking the steps two at a time in an oddly dignified manner that caused his frantic bottom half to seem completely independent from his calm and collected torso.
This paragraph is overall solid, aside from the odd double space and the double period, but that's just cleaning. The paragraph shows his internal thoughts, and puts me in the mind of Gunter as the POV character, but this last sentence externalises me, because the description is never something a person would think about himself; he's acting in such an odd way because he's so focused that he's not aware of his own body language, so you're telling me something the POV character shouldn't be aware of. It does show his state of mind, though from an outside viewpoint. I understand the sentence, though something about it feels odd I can't place.

>everything in a sickly black blanket of disquiet
The buildup of tension in this paragraph is really good, but is shattered by the excessive poetic alliteration of 'sickly black blanket'. I'd definitely remove black. In this paragraph you capitalised the G everytime you mentioned Gallery thirteen. If Gallery thirteen is a distinct name then the thirteen should have a capital as well, otherwise lowercase it.

>a self assured step
Grammatically needs a hyphen for self-assured.

>of the two ; a fact that
A semicolon should have a space after but not before, just like a comma would. You did this with your earlier semicolon as well.

>one of his pudgy finger

>The Belligerent
Unless Gunter is going to mentally name the man as this, the B shouldn't be capitalised.

>As he approached he began
You used 'approached' in the previous sentence, to avoid repetition I'd replace it with 'drew nearer' or similar.

>towards his stoic wife.
You mentioned Marcy cocking her head to the side to listen twice, once in the beginning and again here at the end. It's fine to keep it since I wasn't aware of the repetition at all until I reread, due to the distance between them. Just seems an odd detail.

If this is the first time that the reader becomes aware of Marcy being Gunter's wife, then I think the punchline reveal needs more punch, perhaps a very short conclusive sentence. The tension will be I assume that Gunter wants to protect his wife but also wants to protect the proceedings. It's an exciting reveal (if the reader didn't know their relation already) but is mentioned very casually.

The opening sentence doesn't grab me, but the idea of hell being incredibly boring does. I'd start straight up with 'Hell was in fact, all together, quite boring.'

>to waste those eternal evenings away by
I feel like 'away' should be after 'waste'. No logic behind it, just my own personal bias.

>we found THE PIT
I'd put single quotation marks around 'THE PIT' the first time you mention it here, in order to add to the narrator's eyebrowing-raising appraisal. Just opinion.

I like the narrative voice. Sounds like a professor sharing over wine this bizarre interesting thing that happened to him last summer that you have to hear about.
You could probably find someone on freelance sites like fiverr, or just seek out recommendations from other devs.

Anamnesis feels out of place and thesaurused. Overall vibe feels like it’s coming from a genuine place, but snared in trite, over-sentimental reflection that dulls the sense of intimacy.

Decent early draft. A lot of adjectives seem clumsy, especially “rotten,” “putrid,” and “cruel,” which for me aren’t specific enough to convey much or grab me.

Good imagery and sense of sound/flow overall, but I’m not into the “poetic” flourishes like “ever there before me,” “sets the world aflame,” “singing softly dear,” which sound like something out of a parlor song, like you’re roleplaying an old-time bard instead of expressing yourself. Maybe that juxtaposition is intentional but I’m not picking up on it.
Thanks for reading it. I disagree with your idea that things should be clearly connected in the way you describe, its form being challenging is intentional and reflects the situation, but yeah I definitely need paragraphs. The point with the gun is that it doesn't matter what type of gun it is, to him it is just a gun, notice how it's always referred to as such and never 'it' or the like, I was trying to emphasise that it was unfamiliar. The writing style is meant to reflect the mental state of someone psychopathic and that accounts for its coldness and the lack of interior monologues for a lot of it, the lack of consciousness you describe, and I quite like it as a device, again it's meant to be weird - the seatbelt was a detail to reinforce the fact that this is a man who still has routine and order, someone has has worked in an office all his life, a slice of normality.

Just a bit of insight from my end but it's far from perfect and I could definitely deliver the ideas in a stronger way, and I appreciate your critique
He had barricaded the door and in his hand he held a noticeable rusted knife engraved with images of pretty swirls. The tip of the blade was gracing in front of his eyes left to right. Stuck disheveled on the wall were bent posters of James Dean. The TV was pounding techno glares swallowing the ambiance. The knocking that was merged in with the beat slowed down and dissipated.

"Come on, The hammer just wanna speak to ya"

He stabbed the air exaggeratedly to no ones sense but himself, he shrieked out, spit laying down on the sharpness.


In response the door started screaming with goon force. Beat on beat.

"kid, your not gonna get nailed, just because he's the hammer doesn't men he's gonna nail ya, i mean hammer ya. I'm "the lightning". Do i go around and shock people? Yeah. But not from the sky! It's a metaphor or something. Dunno, boss knows best."

There was a stillness now, like the skin sucking air before the lightning strikes. The tip was holstered down. A queer sense of peace and safety were hammered down as the hammer broke through the door with a swift blow of his elephant tusk shoulders. The lightning stood behind him with a bucket in his hand and one black gloved behind his body.
doesn't matter
to me
sit, g a z e
at the flowers
remember who
chose the shapes
slice the
Anybody have some thoughts on a setting I've been thinking of for a series of short stories or novels?

It would be centered around the time humanity first achieved light speed travel and have spread among the solar system, but still have no way to quickly reach another star. A mixture of governments and dynasties have divided the solar system but come together to figure out how to achieve faster-than-light travel.

After creating a series of smaller crafts using a device that allows a ship to use stored power to jump forward in space, they invest a decade of time designing and building the ship and installing a scaled up version of the jump drive.

The ship is massive, carrying a mixture of crew, passengers, and VIP's totaling near 20,000 people with large holds, communal areas, and auditorium. In a Titanic-like frenzy people clamor to get a spot on the ship, including a lottery for people who partake in its construction.

On the day of the launch, everything goes smoothly. The drive powers up normally, the jump goes with no mechanical trouble, but when they go to verify their new location they find that none of the star charts match.

The issue with a jump drive this big is the amount of energy it needs. Relying mostly on an array of solar panels to power the drive, their new position puts them in a location of space that is farther away from any source of sunlight that even with the onboard generator running at full capacity it would take years for another jump. Despite an attempt to simply turn around and jump back to the solar system, nobody is sure if they'll be able to get back.

What follows is how a society of people cut off from their home civilization progresses. When their past lives are still fresh in their minds it's easy to uphold traditional lifestyles and retain the knowledge, but as time goes on some things are forgotten or things break that the only person who knew how to fix it was a loner who died suddenly of food poisoning.
Posting my submission in a reply to this so no one thinks I'm leeching.

This could definitely use some work. The image of the knife is a puzzling one. A rusted knife with engravings of pretty swirls? That's odd.

>The tip of the blade was *gracing*
I don't think that's the verb you want.

>Stuck disheveled on the wall
Clumsy construction. You could cut 'disheveled' because the 'bent' posters convey similar imagery, although the entire sentence is unnecessary imagery. What exactly are you trying to convey? You're not communicating any sense of urgency to a scene where some presumed mafiosos or gangsters are aching to 'nail' some dude. A guy's pounding on the door and you want us to pay attention to posters of James Dean, to the tv 'pounding techno glares'? You should be describing things that lend a sense of urgency to the scene, of impending violence, of anxiety and fear.

>He stabbed the air exaggeratedly
Clumsy adverb.

>to no ones sense but himself

>spit laying down on the sharpness.
Replace 'sharpness' with 'serrated edge' or something similar.

>like the skin sucking air
You're using some pretty clumsy/borderline cryptic imagery that is very difficult to imagine. Hyphenate 'skin sucking' if you insist on keeping it.

>The tip was holstered down.
The tip of what? The hammer you referenced eight or so sentences ago; the knife you referenced at the beginning?

>A queer sense of peace and safety were hammered down as the hammer broke through...
I know you're trying to make the connection with the establishment of the tension/tone of the scene and the actual physical hammer, but it's both clumsy and repetitive. It was hammered down as the hammer broke through the door? It doesn't work. And what is hitting the door; the hammer, or his 'elephant tusk shoulders'? Do you mean the character, The Hammer? Capitalize his name if so. Also, 'elephant tusk shoulders'? Shoulders are rounded, not sharp like tusks.

I get the feeling you're quite young from this story. If that's the case, don't worry. You've got plenty of time and room to grow, and it's best you you refine your craft while you're younger so you're not writing garbage in your twenties or later like newer writings who started later in life. That's just the way it is; everyone writes garbage at first. You need to keep writing, though, and amass a pile of garbage. A few hundred thousand words of dogshit written over the course of a few years is progress toward a hundred or a thousand words of wonderful prose.

If you're not so young, disregard everything in that paragraph above. Apply yourself with total intensity to the furtherance of your craft from here on out, or find a new hobby or passion.
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Forgot to post as a reply OOPS
Best ITT
Why not just wait until the thread dies?
I'll second that. Very nice pace. Maybe a little gonzo, though. is there more?

Here is the first chapter of a novel I'm trying to do. I'm 36000 words in. I just reread the thing for what might have been the twentieth time and I don't know what to do. The part int he bar seems like shit. The part that follows is great, I think.

I'd appreciate any comments and help.

fucking trash anyone that likes this is a blockhead
Great critique, case & point made. Well done, moron.
don't ever reply to me again blockhead




Bleached and starchy, my collar tightens up,
From nerves or an allergic reaction.
It’s happened before, like the time I tried
To shake the manager’s hand and thank him,
When he said “We’ll call” and I said “You too”
And saw him wipe my sweat off on his slacks,
Then going to leave, I pulled at the door,
And not budging, I smiled coyly and pushed,
He sat there and stared a moment and said,
“It’s a pull, you just have to pull hard,”
Then, as if a spell broke, it pulled open,
And I fled for my life, loosened my tie,
And never so badly wanted a smoke.

Coming back here now, at my father’s wake,
I see myself in the casket, made up
And on display, but can’t see the bereaved,
Blurry, out-of-focus and mostly false.
I see myself, naked, enraged with grief,
Flipping the caterer’s table over,
Cheese and crackers fall down in slow motion,
As Uncle Mike wipes my sweat off his hands,
On his black rental pants and keeps talking.
Overall not bad, but a bit too gaudy and obvious. The Hitler part is especially over the top, though the “little boy describing himself” thing works as a nice parallel to your piece and highlights the underlying fragility of your narrator. Definitely needs work, but has potential.
The modern day hearth: a glossed and vitrified window to a euphoric fantasy; comprised of rare-Earth elements, leached from the hands of despoiled laborers. The computer patters vivid images never present, always behind a screen. Bitten: the forbidden fruit of ideology -- a consciousness amputated from the hands of history. Steve Jobs snickers from the grave as the mass Macintosh users so proudly vaunt their half-eaten apple, fully digesting the myth without a grumble of dyspepsia. Ideology metastisizes within the arbitrary sign, blurring the reality of empirically verifiable class boundaries. While Marx in The German Ideology describes myth as blinding material history, Barthes elucidates myth in Mythologies as an assimilation of empirical facts to motivate signs: a bourgeois perversion of innocence. The straight-edged blade of empirical reality severs the head of the mythical bourgeois Chimera.
derivative of what?
"Dad's dead. I've made my peace with it. I've 'grieved' appropriately. I've made a donation to Lincoln Center "in lieu of flowers". So why is he still following me?"

Paul throws his cigarette into the garbage. He checks his watch.

"It's not like I /miss/ him - not in an Oprah sort of way. In undergrad I'd have done anything to get the bastard in the ground. But it's /who/ he was - I get to Hopkins and find out he knows everyone I know."

"Knew" says Legs Parker. Paul looks at him. As always, the kid is completely oblivious to his own sociopathy." He continues, peeved:

"I mean, I knew he was important. His name's on a wing, for Christ's sake. But it's like they worship the guy - Rosen came up to me after pharm lecture to "see if there was anything I needed."

"Sounds like one of those 'good' problems" I say. I take another drag from my e-cig. We're in the stairwell of the North Parking Garage, which is the de facto smoking spot for first-years.

Paul changes the subject. "How'd things go with the Vandy girl last night?" he asks.

"Good" I say. "We fucked."

"Who was she, anyway?" Sam's looked up from his flash cards.

"Sarah. Sophomore, poli sci. Didn't get the last name."

"How do you fuck a girl without knowing her last name?" Paul is incredulous.

"Sometimes there's too much moss on the headstone" says Legs. We all laugh and wonder if he's joking.
The man sat in the cold foreboding rain waiting for her. Rain danced in the park and his sodden trousers fastened to his slithery legs. African shamans bellowed out lost ceremonial thrummings with fat raindrops upon the yellowed umbrella motionless above the mans head. His face is a cracked scabland mask, behind which he is shrouded. He knows what he must do.
Her steps are heard. She peers in the dark rain. On she sashays. Her eyes are the puddles she walks near, misty and luminous plates reflecting Manhattan. She nears his bench.
Cordially, he greets her with a smile. He sweeps his claw into a friendly handshake with her. Her smile gives way into a question.
“Do you kn-“
The sulfurous iron thunders into her abdomen.
He hauls the trigger once more keeping the blistering steel adhered firmly to flesh. Eyes once luminous fill with mist. He heaves again. Her screams were rasps through threadbare lungs. She shrieks for air without sound. The last shorn iron is thundered from the devil.
His suit is besmeared with abhorrently beautiful petals of dark crimson. He runs for a parked black dodge.

It didn’t get any critique last thread please tell me what you think
That’s a really nice Rei tat, who did that?
I'd be remiss in failing to mention that God is a bit of a prick. That is, the type of man to get drunk one night and hit on under-aged college girls; to pass out in dumb and dim stupor splayed face-down in the drainage muck; to drape a golden lamp-shade betwixt his ethereal halo of holy radiance as an ironic homage to Animal House, and other boorish seventies shtick.

I can't say that I am a fan of His Grace, though in life I held him in high regard. But his midnight tokes and affinity for Nickelback made my stomach turn. He was a repugnant creature of bloated beergut and yellowed smoker teeth, whom smelled of rot and sweat and fat. I found his lectures on life and meaning a distasteful parody of greater thinkers: he did fancy himself an intellectual, oblivious to the way we snicked at his pseudo tidbits of half-baked philosophical wankery. In honesty, I saw him more as a particularly witless child.
The imagery definetly needs work. For example, instead of “pretty swirls” use “eloquent circilings” or “crimson billows of captivating design.” One thing I like to do is think of the sentence I would like to write and then rearrange it to be more interesting. For example, I would change “she walked through the door” to “wheat blonde hair swept through her silhouette as the door opened.
I like the idea but I think personally it would be more fun to have the setting back in the home galaxy/starsystem and use this as a kind of pushing point for a galactic war kind of like the assassination of Franz Ferdinand in ww1. You could build some long standing rivalries between some of the empires and have this set them off. You could even have some Manhattan-Project esque secret programs using the FTL drive tech for weapons of mass destruction. Personally I would find a massive galaxy wide war more page-turning than a struggle for survival in the pitch black darkness of space.
>other times with another extremity which would no doubt present itself as eager for the task
If this was supposed to be sexy it failed, it just made me laugh imagining some guy applying lotion with his dick.
>he reasoned that, to Kinsley, the Coco Mademoiselle perfume he gifted her months ago, some time before the first cracks of their widening schism, signified Eduard.
Overall I like it, I really liked that last paragraph too, good word choice. Really all you need to do is clean up some of the messy sentences and maybe do a little bit of revision in the first paragraph to make it less confusing. For instance, I thought Eduard was using some kind of magick to see in Marcus’ eyes literally or maybe he was using a telescope. Just make it clearer that he’s imagining.
I dislike the contemplation over the meaning of “myth” it really takes away from the scene if this is an opening paragraph. I would say try to spend less time on the pondering over the nature of myth and more on describing the bleak and austere setting. Describe the flaky drool stained chins and the red augur of braindeath snaking through their bloodshot eyes and the seared mark of the electronic beast boring deeper on their pallid and starved skin. Overall though I liked the imagery and the word choice I give it an edgy/10
I like how your trying to build Paul’s character to be living in the shadow of his father, but don’t get in a bad habit of letting the characters tell the story instead of it happening. Also give more detail to the setting. And maybe I’m autistic but I don’t get the headstone joke, if it’s relating to a hairy pussy it makes no sense because her last name wouldn’t be on her slit. I would say spice it up a little and word something different than you would normally and make it interesting to read. Overall decent dialogue and fair wording, would like to see a longer version of this if you’ve got one.
Hey, thanks for replying - I've been checking the thread obsessively for responses, lol.

The "moss on the headstone" bit implies that Legs dug up a corpse and fucked it. He didn't know her last name because her gravestone was overgrown with moss. Definitely a little bit too esoteric, I feel - it comes out of left field, and is hard to understand in context. I'll change it.
Your welcome man glad I could help
Dark dimly lit and sharply silent the air was choked with
passions violent when waters broke in the bunny dirt burrow
"Kree-yah god damnit" cried Bun-bun! "Rip-rip of Rakicak, yes please
shit off to Rabbastan son and kill the poor fuckers. Kree-yah
take your sad corpse too!" Softly Mu-mu began to cry in the
kitchen. And so Rip-rip was sent off to war. Not with blood
but water. For a mother welcomes her son to earth. A mother
sends him off to war. And one welcomes also across that
misty misty shore.

Rip-rip of Rakicak's unit took the quick-quick way 'round. The
quick-quick way that they never whispered of except in secret holes.
For such lore was the great nation of Trattertrot built on. That they could
strike with impunity and destroy far stronger and larger

Like a fox in a rabbit burrow they struck. Crushing the
undermenstchen like rats. But hearing the lamentations of their
women, Rip-rip began to doubt his dharma.
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Though you haven't met me you are familiar with the work my colleagues and I have done. We are the last order of real magic in this world. I'm not talking about some Dungeons and Dragons bullshit. We don't walk around in black cloaks throwing fireballs at skeletons, at least not in the way that you've been told. Even less are we like the “magician” who does parlour tricks and performs at children's birthday parties. These harlequins are like civil war reenactors to our Navy SEAL. They pull rabbits out of hats, we pull reality out of nothingness. Odds are you yourself have dabbled in our art, you may even be quite proficient in its practice without realizing exactly what you are doing.
I remember the first time I performed a magical act. I was four years old, knee high and half-witted but still in possession of the faculties necessary to make the world do my bidding. My mother asked me a simple question: “have you had any dessert yet?”. I had, I could still taste the sweet stickiness of the Swedish Berries in the back of my mouth, but, young as I was, I realized that she didn't know this. I had observed myself eating the candies but she hadn't, I was in a position of power. “No mummy, can I have some?” “Of course sweetie” she said as she grabbed another pack of candy from the top shelf of our pantry cupboard. I ate them with relish, and she smiled at my obvious enjoyment. Here was my first contact with magic, with our innate capacity to bend the world as it truly is into what we want it to be. I naively thought that it had no consequences. I was happy, she was happy that I was happy, it was a win-win as far as I was concerned. As long as I maintained the illusion that my spell was the truth, and ensured that there was no evidence to contradict it, I was in control of the world. I felt immensely powerful eating those sweet red candies at the age of four.
I came into contact with the destructive nature of my magic just a couple of years later. We had spent the day celebrating my little sisters third birthday with cake and a gathering of similarly aged little kids. All of the adults gathered were practising their magical capacities in earnest that day, evoking complex personalities and relationships onto the children who were just barely speaking full sentences, projecting their own personalities, insecurities, and behaviours onto them. Naturally they were oblivious to it all, this kind of magic being most effective when the practitioner themselves believes the spell they're weaving is the truth.
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Just as the guests were clearing out of the house I had a realization. It was eight-thirty, we would begin getting ready for bed soon, that meant that we would need to brush our teeth. I had no intention of suffering through that ordeal. My mother, being a dentist, would scour our teeth bloody with the little bristled toothbrushes and insist that we were better off for it. I was convinced that this was just another spell she had cast on herself to justify her profession, so I conceived of a way to simultaneously break free from her self imposed enchantment and save my sister and myself some pain along the way. “Mummy” would be grateful for it, even if she didn't know it, and my sister would certainly enjoy getting to bed without that painful ritual being performed. So, proud of myself for having concocted such a charitable spell that would do nothing but help the world, I quickly set to work. While my mother was preoccupied with seeing the guests off I took our toothbrushes from their mugs, put them down under the sink inside our medicine chest, and quickly ran off to ensure that my spell would not be compromised. Unfortunately I forgot to account for my wandering sister, who saw me hide the toothbrushes from the bathroom doorway and asked me what I was doing in the half babble of a child just coming in to speech.“Why you hide the brushbrush?” I told her to be quiet, and took her with me to play in the living room just down the stairs.
When bedtime came a half hour later my mother called us up to the bathroom to brush our teeth. The toothbrushes were gone, and her confusion quickly grew into frustration. “Mummy” asked us if we knew where they were. I played my part to a tee, obliviously shrugging my shoulders and, to my sister's credit, she remained silent. “Mummy” looked all around the house: in drawers, down in the kitchen, in all of our bedrooms, as her frustration blossomed into anger. Finally, she checked under the sink and opened the medicine chest. Stopping her movements dead, eyeing the found toothbrushes with a consternation unique to a parent who realizes their children have deceived them, she turned to us and furiously asked who had done it. I kept up the act, shrugging my shoulders and playing the doe eyed innocent perfectly. Then, ruination. “I did” said my sister, taking all of the blame and breaking the cardinal rule of magic: never let your spell be known as such. She ruined everything, and she would pay the price. Shocked, hurt, and angry, my mother brushed our teeth in silence before announcing that my sister would not be getting a story or a kiss tonight. Wide eyed, on the verge of tears, she looked at me with the innocence of one sent to the stockade for a crime they did not commit. Her weeping was bitter and loud. I sat upright in bed as my mother read me “The Boy Who Cried Wolf”. I didn't hear a word she said, only the screams of my little sister coming through the wall.
The Crocodile

Long ago, when walking through the shopping mall, I looked upon a majestic pair of boots made from Crocodile leather. Tender, elegant, I'm sure they would look beautiful on me. Oh, how the people would foam in jealousy.
Sadly, coming back from my daydream, I realized: I am on vacation, and there is no way that these would make it through border control. Crocodiles are an endangered species, after all. Why is life so unfair?
A few months later, back at the farm. Watching the sunset on a warm summer evening, I was looking at the newspaper, and there I saw an article:
"All neighborhood in shock, a man was eaten by pet crocodile"
Many people buy them when they are small but are later amazed at how big they get – how foolish of them. And at that moment, it dawned on me: Here in this country, it might be illegal to import crocodile leather, but it is very much allowed to own a "pet" crocodile. And there are probably a lot of people who are willing to give one up, as it literally grew over their head.
And so I made a webpage, on the title it said with big green letters: "Crocodile shelter", and bellow besides some pictures of crocodiles:
"Has your crocodile outgrown you? Do you want to get rid of it, but you don't want to just release it into the wild? Contact us, we have a big farm, and there is a lot of place for crocodiles here!"
A few weeks nothing happened. But then a phone call.
A girl was on the phone, sounded pretty young. And with a stuttering voice asked me if this was the crocodile shelter. Overjoyed I responded, and after a little talk, it turned out that her crocodile, "Mike", had grown to two meters in length, and it became too large to be housed in the bathroom. The girl sounded sad, but it was for the "greater good" to give the animal away. And so we agreed that she would bring it on Thursday.
When they arrived it int the morning, the girl got out from her truck, and after exchanging some words, the girl asked: "Well, where are the other crocodiles?", but I was prepared. I said: "You see, it's nesting period. The crocodiles are in that building over there", and pointed at the silo. "We can't disturb them right now". Visibly discontent with the answer, the girl still agreed to hand over her "Mike". And so the trunk opened, and a crocodile appeared inside.
"Don't worry!", said the girl, "He doesn't bite". It was a giant green brown crocodile, his skin looked just like I remembered the boots from back then. Oh, what good quality! Looking at its head I got shocked and amused at the same time. A gigantic jaw, that could bite off my whole foot in one bite looked at me with its teeth sticking out on the sides. And "he doesn't bite", well, sure, I thought.

"Farewell Mike, I would have loved to keep you, but my place is too small. I know that you will have a much better life here, then I could ever provide you back home. Farewell, and have a good life.", and with those words, the girl embraced the monster, got into her truck and drew off.
Finally, the theater was over, time to get to work. And so I put the crocodile away and got inside to get my gun. I already made leather boots from cow leather, so there is no way I wouldn't be able to handle a crocodile. I went up to its enclosure and pointed the gun at it.
There he was, Mike the crocodile. His skin shined in the light, he looked so peaceful, and a majestic creature. Maybe I should see how he handles a pig first, would probably be a sight to behold, would be a shame to miss this chance. and so got a small pig and threw it into the crocodile's enclosure. Let's watch what happens.
The Crocodile did nothing. Why doesn't it attack the pig? Some time passed, curiously the pig approached to crocodile to see what it's up to. The crocodile moved a bit, but it didn't seem hostile.
I got angry. Well, let's see what happens when it gets hungry.
So I took out the pig and waited for five days before repeating the experiment. This time the crocodile tore the pig to pieces and started feasting on its flesh.
There it was, a majestic creature destroying the weak. I felt a sense of joy watching it. At this moment I decided I would rather have a crocodile than a pair of crocodile boots. It's much more fun to keep.
This was 3 weeks ago.
Today the girl, Mikes owner, comes to visit. Unannounced, because the website and phone number are both gone. Gets out of the vehicle and starts approaching. But I know how to handle myself:
"This is private property, you are here uninvited, if you approach, I will shoot.", and point my gun at her. The girl gives off the usual complaints, but I don't care. We didn't sign any papers, so she doesn't have anything against me.
I stand before her in my new crocodile boots. And laugh, as she leaves with the words: "I'm going to the police!"
Well, The website is gone, and there is nothing to prove that could ever prove that there was a crocodile here. I hesitated for a few days, but in the end, it was worth it.
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Not bad anon, although I think the subject matter carried the story more then te prose. Why did he say he would rather keep the crocodile and then a couple sentences later its a pair of boots? Not a satisfying ending IMO but that's probably what your aim was. Was also easy to follow / straightforward which was nice from the typical overtly ambitious submissions here trying to wow us with adjective hell and queer word salads. Keep at it
It's part of a novel (or rather a novella, probably) about me murdering my real life best friend in 2029 that I am planning to give him as a present for his 21 birthday (next year). It contains many in-jokes and references other people wouldn't get but despite this I post excerpts from it now and then on 4chan for fun. Glad you liked it
Thanks anon. I especially appreciate the second part. My last submission got replies saying it was too straightforward and that I should use more adjectives. I will keep this amount then.
About the ending, I wanted the Protagonist to fall back into his old ways after a short moment of hesitation.
But it should be satisfying, because he says that there is no proof left, but he forgets that he is wearing the proof.

This is iffy to me. Sometimes I like your diction with lines like the opener but sometimes I'm cringing at what feels like an attempt at Joycean dialogue/humor/syntax. I'm not sure, it feels silly in a way that I feel isn't meant to be substanceless. I feel like you're trying to say something underneath the silliness but I don't know if I'm engaged enough with the text to investigate that because the humor is mildly abrasive as it reads like a haphazard Ulysses chapter. If that's not an influence of yours and the text is meant to be taken as silly as it's written then ignore me. But if I'm right at all, I'd recommend, for now at least, you just convey your ideas clearly and work on your prose before trying to play around with silly names and dialogue like someone with enough skill to poke fun at their craft.
I meant I also point out one thing that was slightly off to me was thie following sentence;
>A few months later, back at the farm. Watching the sunset on a warm summer evening, I was looking at the newspaper, and there I saw an article:

I think it's the feeling of not being grounded early on, it's a few months later, ok, we're on a farm, alright, the suns setting, it's warm and were watching the sunset but were also reading the news paper? The adjective of its warm to me indicated we would be spending some time in this scene and most likely in a more natural environment as it made it clear were in a suburban localation- but then were quickly setting up a website. Idk maybe cutting out some of the sentence would let it fit the tone of the rest of the story.

> Later in August, on the deck one the evening while skimming through the paper, a headline caught my eye

Idk if that is actually better but that's how I would've personally written it

Also for the falling back In old ways, it just seemed slightly off cause the voice told us his thoughts and actions so its sorta like we were missing info, but it makes more sense now that you explained it. Maybe a sentence could be injected somewhere in there?
> Later in August, on the deck one evening while skimming through the paper, a headline caught my eye

Lol removed a "the" thaf snuck in there woops how embarrassing!
Thanks a lot, anon.
I tried describing the scenery there, and from what you are saying, it was the classical case of „nothing halve, nothing whole“ so I should have either stuck with the scene for a while longer, or just leave it out completely. You are right as it seems a bit wasted here, it would have probalby fit better a the end scene or when the crocodile arrived. I will watch out for things like that in the future.

As for the ending. I wanted to write a twist ending, as the reader should think that the protagonist actually kept the crocodile. But in the end it is revealed that it was actually made into boots. I don‘t actually want to explain how the man rebounded, because I want it to be a twist. But maybe some foreshadowing, wouldn‘t be out of place...
I will definetly keep that in mind for my next shortstory.
Thanks a lot for taking the time to give me your thoughts!
Myth? Barthes? Really dude?
In the Dominion of strangers,
From whom I wish not to know, I spot an angel crying, her presence unknown.

Whisked by her beauty, she noticed my gaze, she lead me away, into her haze.

I call to her gently, the cold winds blow, is it me who was weeping? My head hangs low

Engulfed in sadness, alone once more, I hear the knocking; the exiters door

He greets me kindly, and I to him, I hear her singing, the messengers hymn

Before must I go, I wish only to see, was it her or is it me?

In the Dominion of strangers,
From whom I wish not to know, I spot an angel crying, her presence now known.
Np anon and Yeah foreshadow would have worked well in that story
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A little 2 page story I worked on, would appreciate feedback. It needs some more stuff, but I'm curious how its current form comes off.

Will do crit for crit.

Thanks everyone.
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I open the truck’s door, step onto the brick side street. I look at Company Hill again, all sort of worn down and round. A long time ago it was real craggy, and stood like an island in the Teays River. It took over a million years to make that smooth little hill, and I’ve looked all over it for trilobites. I think how it has always been there and always will be, least for as long as it matters. The air is smoky with summertime. A bunch of starlings swim over me. I was born in this country and I have never very much wanted to leave. I remember Pop’s dead eyes looking at me. They were real dry, and that took something out of me. I shut the door, head for the café.
I see a concrete patch in the street. It’s shaped like Florida, and I recollect what I wrote in Ginny’s yearbook: “We will live on mangoes and love.” And she up and left without me—two years she’s been down there without me. She sends me postcards with alligator wrestlers and flamingos on the front. She never asks me any questions. I feel like a real fool for what I wrote, and go into the café.
The place is empty, and I rest in the cooled air. Tinker Reilly’s little sister pours my coffee. She has good hips. They are kind of like Ginny’s and they slope nice curves to her legs. Hips and legs like that climb steps into airplanes. She goes to the counter end and scoffs down the rest of her sundae. I smile at her, but she’s jailbait. Jailbait and black snakes are two things I won’t touch with a window pole. One time I used an old black snake for a bullwhip, snapped the sucker’s head off, and Pop beat hell out of me with it. I think how Pop could make me pretty mad sometimes. I grin.
I think about last night when Ginny called. Her old man drove her down from the airport in Charleston. She was already bored. Can we get together? Sure. Maybe do some brew? Sure. Same old Colly. Same old Ginny. She talked through her beak. I wanted to tell her Pop had died, and Mom was on the warpath to sell the farm, but Ginny was talking through her beak. It gave me the creeps.
Here's mine /lit/
It's called "The Rotting Stake"

"The raging bull was shot dead,
its corpse left to rot in the arena for all to see,
and as it festered they retrieved its head.
Its head was stuck on a stake for all to see,
the message clear:
Dude your rhythm is bad. If you can explain the artistic merit of this work, please do, because it is not apparent.
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Anybody have some thoughts on a setting I've been thinking of for a series of short stories or novels?

It's set in a post-apocalyptic world centered around a megacity where the inhabitants are struggling to live day to day, with various Hoovervilles forming around the city walls filled with people who could not go inside the city protection.
I'm motivated, pen to the paper, I'm flowing,
In a mood like this, there's no limit to how high I'm going,
Touching the sky, feeling emotion, down my arm and into word,
This'll be the best thing anyone ever heard.

Coming out on instinct, feel like I'm levitating,
Nobody else can do this, I'm innovating,
Setting it out, my soul on a page,
Feel like a bard, feel like a sage.

Look again a day later, what was I thinking?
Half of this shit looks like a ship that wishes it was sinking.
Egotistical, selfish, arrogant, fuck,
why does everything I ever do suck?

I was so happy when I wrote it, I felt those lines,
Why didn't I realize it, see the signs,
Just another episode, Manic happiness lead that endeavour,
Then it left me, I feel lower than ever.

I wish I was stable, content, or numb,
Every time I come to my senses I feel so fucking dumb,
I'm a chore to put up with, my rambling unending,
the kind of person people must regret befriending,

Sometimes ecstatic, sometimes in a rut,
Sometimes it's all I can do not to make another cut,
Sometimes it's half-full, sometimes I'm empty,
Can't believe I thought I'd have my life fixed at twenty

Almost thirty and I'm still fucking worthless,
God, what did I do to deserve this?
Can't control my emotions, they rule me,
Always a slave, I'll never be free.
White trash barbie
Brought up in the sticks
Daddy scouts the bushes
Mama checks for ticks

Pamper roll, sunday stroll
Sockless in the grass
Little miss, make a wish
You're growing up too fast

Honkytonk convertibles
Roll up in the dark
Country boys with long cocks
Prowl the trailer park

Tank tops, flip flops, cutoff denim jeans
Smoky-eyed child, she's the woman of my dreams
Dirty church roof, bleary stars up above
My hand between her knees, she taught me how to love

Mama says we're crazy
Just another Okie fable
Used to go to church
Now she's dancing on the table

White trash barbie
Living in the sticks
Only say you love me
That's my only wish.

Jody is a pretty boy
He hangs out at the club
He loves to wear his polo shirts
And sell his fancy drugs

But Jody gave me hell today
And sent me in a whirl
I'm on a bus to Pendleton
'Cause Jody got my girl

I walked out of the soda shop
And saw them from afar
My girl and Jody, back-to-front
Necking in his car

So no more ice cream socials
Or blowjob nights for me
I've got a slate-green future
In Unc's USMC

They're gonna wipe my cares away
The very best they can
They'll teach me how to march and fight.
They'll make this boy a man.
>Country boys with the long cocks
Long cocks?
Thats all you could come up with?
lol, you've never been to sedalia. they all have giant dicks
A well-kept secret of history is that many ancient figures suffered from a condition called "granulated eyelids," or a permanent alteration of levator margin. Though not sight-threatening, this malady was permanent, and would cause the sufferer to blink more than usual.

What is more surprising is that nearly every great figure of antiquity suffered from this condition: Alexander, Julius Caesar, Theodoric, and Charlamagne, to name only a few. The third century monastic Gildas writes of the malady: "It [blepharitis] seems peculiar to...those men who find themselves in positions of great power and influence. He [the sufferer] complains of grit in the eye, and avoids direct light upon waking. [sic]" Whether Gildas made these tendentious observations because he was /himself/ a heritor of granulated eyelids is a matter of some contention.

The Byzantine emperor Justinian, for whom the condition went undiagnosed until early adulthood, is of particular note. Unlike his contemporaries, he was not afflicted with the ailment in daily life, but experienced worsening of his symptoms immediately following moments of great significance in this rule: The culling of the Nika rebels. The conquest of the Vandal kingdom. The promulgation of his eponymous codex.

Many in the ruler's inner sanctum quietly took note of these episodes. The geometer Isidore - uncommonly eloquent for a man of the sciences - writes of the emperor: "He [Justinian] looks upon the Hagia with some difficulty...as though its perfection is slightly more than he can accept."
i turn blue
i turn grey
i get high
i wont stop
i cant quit
i get lit
yeah yeah yeah
i get stoned
i get stoned
i smoke shit
all alone
i hate life
is this it
i get lit
yeah yeah yeah
im not clean
when i pee
i took perc
full of scree
i dont die
but i try
i get lit
yeah yeahyeah yeah yeah
Man this board has become barren hasn't it?
What's the hook that reels me in and differentiates your series from every other dystopian sci-fi?

Bump on this.
It's not bad but I really have no idea what you're trying to do with this.
Also you compare everything to flowers or a breeze, why is this?
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This is beautiful work. The voice is skin-tight and authentic. Good job.
A speech from a tragedy I am composing. I will post the translation first, and then the original. Sorry fro my bad English. The original is in blank verse, with 12-syllable verse line for metric.

MALALAI: If God is like the vast majority of people
Believe him to be, it would be better if he got arrested
And a human being of pure and merciful soul
Sat upon his office and put on his robe.
The God of so many minds – a bitter goblin
And frowning druid, an executioner for ever
Sharpening the ax and tightening the hangman's knot,
An eternal watchmen salivating with hunger
For the sins that he himself sowed
In our souls, God with a spider's heart,
Waiting for souls to stick like flies
In the web of temptations and errors of this world –
That is not my God, it's the god of the toxic minds.
This masochistic father who tortures his children
To make the child that lies within himself to suffer,
Who has in humanity a carious tooth
That he bites and presses, so that it may hurt even more,
In pursuit of the perverted pleasure of having
Pain as a steward, who comes and goes under orders,
The pleasure of being able to say: "I was offended":
This furious, spoiled and cranky God
Is the God of the hearts who have hatred for their master
And not the endless love that makes the cosmos throb.

MALALAI: Se Deus é como a maior parte das pessoas
O creem, melhor seria que ele fosse preso
E um ser humano de alma pura e piedosa
Sentasse no seu cargo e vestisse sua toga.
O Deus de tantas mentes – um duende amargo
E druida carrancudo, um carrasco pra sempre
Afiando o machado e apertando o nó da forca,
Um eterno vigia a salivar de fome
Pelos pecados que ele mesmo semeou
Em nossas almas, Deus com coração de aranha,
Esperando que as almas grudem como moscas
Na teia de tentações e erros deste mundo –
Esse não é meu Deus, é o deus das mentes tóxicas.
Esse pai masoquista que tortura os filhos
Para que o filho dentro dele próprio sofra,
Que tem na humanidade um dente cariado
Que ele morde e pressiona, para que doa mais,
Em busca do prazer pervertido de ter
A dor como mordomo, que vem e vai sob ordens,
O prazer de poder dizer: “Fui ofendido”:
Esse Deus furioso, mimado e ranzinza
É o Deus dos corações que têm o ódio por mestre
E não o amor sem fim que faz pulsar o cosmo.
It's fine for what it is, but what it is is something that has been done a million times before. Yeah, we get it, a deterministic God casting judgement on pre-damned souls is a pretty glaring paradox (unless you're a fucking Calvinist or something). But absolutely no one is going to be able to address this subject more artfully than Dosto in the Grand Inquisitor chapter of The Brothers K, so as everything other than a stylistic exercise, addressing this issue in literature is pointless.

However, as a stylistic exercise, nothing in it made me wince, and it is probably better in the original language. So good job and keep on truckin, anon.
>inb4 is is
why hasn't anyone critiqued this yet. i envy your vocabulary

Thank you, your encouragement means a lot to me. This sppech is actually only part of a larger whole.

I am writing a tragedy with a young Afghan woman called Malalai, after obtaining a degree to teach literature, returns to the mountain village of her ancestors, decided to open a school there. She enters in conflict with some of the village elders, while other elders support her. They made a council and eventually decided that the school will be opened. After that a series of consequences conduct the story to its final tragic climax.

The speech comes in the midst of a heated discussion where the Mullah, a former Taliban, accuses the girl of not knowing God, of not understanding God. She then tries to defend herself by saying that his God and the god of so many people around the world is not the true god who modeled the universe, the God that gave blood and breath to existence.

The girl in question is not especially original and her arguments are all pretty simple to our Western perspective. They only sound shocking (in the context of the play) to more fanatical authorities of Islam. In fact even a good part of the elders of the village share the same views of it (which even in Afghanistan are nothing new, when we have in mind the poetry of Rumi and the Sufis).

But the truth is that even if I wanted to be original and inventive I could not: I usually take old cliches and dusty topics and try to give them a new coloring. But I am terribly lacking in capacities to create original plots (this play, for example, is something like Antigone) and new ways of thinking.
PSA, you should all drop Milton

Milton was an academic,
Septic relic of a silly
Puritan regime by means of
Condescension of what Pavlov
Called our appetite; Skelton or
A Chaucer poem - choice delights
And Pope was of Milton in awe
He denounced England and her poor
Bards and minstrels including that
Chap who told us of Prince Hamlet
He praised the French their feminine
Verse brought about by Malherbe in
Terse and damning fanning of flame
Mostly Roman, but some lie blame
At the door of Henry Fourth, the
Scoundrel king of Voltaire's thing, but
Yawp forward to Coleridge that
Good old man, he did set it straight;
'Chauser, that famous clerke,
His termes were not darke,
But pleasaunt, easy and playne,
No worde he wrote in vayne'
So let us here say the final
Word, the judgement of 4chan be
Heard, it was Skelton, in spite of
Milton's contempt who spoiled us with
His Goddess-sent words for life, and
Our sympathies should lie not with
Milton, but his poor wife
That sounds like good stuff, man. Again, my main issue was that the subject was tired, but the writing itself was fairly strong. Wishing you the best with your project, bud.
I was trying to touch on symbols and metaphors. It feels a little disjointed, and I intend to fix that, but I'm not sure how. The wind is supposed to represent loneliness. The woman was lonely and restless when she sighs, so she's waiting to be talked to (rescued). When the wind blows the lilting flowers, the narrator visits trodden daisies (prostitutes).

Women and people are delicate and admired like flowers, but people can be vicious like hyenas, at times ready to feast upon the weak. The narrator is a rabbit trying to be a hyena, but also has trouble fighting against those who he perceives to do him wrong, because he feels bad for the rabbit inside everyone. After being rejected, the narrator starts killing trying to embrace his inner hyena. Overall the narrator is a rabbit trying to be able to be a hyena to be a stronger person in a world of flowers and hyenas, but in the end he just becomes another hyena (really a rabbit) lain upon tall grass, because after all he isn't a hyena or a flower. He's a rabbit.

I'm glad you don't think it's bad, but I would like it to be better. I'm quite happy with the fluffy and floweriness of it, but I do recognize the disjointed aspects and have trouble fitting everything into a narrative. I just have never shown it to anyone and would like the feedback from other people to see how it reads aside from my own perspective. I would like to know any strengths and weaknesses.

Thanks, I really appreciate you reading it.
For the people of today there is a propensity
An inveterate tendency to entangle their identity
In transient things, the ones that make us smile
In the here, in the now, if only a little while
In the pettiest of things, such as what we wear
Spending all idle hours simply fixing their hair
But let their mouth open, let them try to speak
Words will be spoken as if learned in a week
Self-loathing souls, they simply reject the Self
If books they buy, they lie rotting on a shelf
So too does their mind as they attempt to find
Meaning in appearance, of the exterior kind
As if searching for color when they are but blind
Open your mind's eye! Then perhaps they'd see
What Life truly is, what it is to Be.
Chapter 1.
Santiago Ranch - 1973

Barnabas flenched the calfskin off a roseate Charolais carcass. Twilight dispersed rays over Baldy Mountain, transforming the blood orange- and chartreuse-smattered rock into a glossy pastiche of Vermeer. This mountain was the prominent feature of a town whose existence frequently dissolved into topology lines on state maps. Vertiginous crags surrounded Sheridan, a frontier village known as "The Heart of Ruby Valley".

The vaqueros packed up to leave for a junket starting at 7:30. An hour before, they slumped home in the back of Macey’s Dodge pickup. Macey, his partner of fifteen years, feared Jesus and not much else. She often performed the euthanizations. With her left hand, she caressed the snout of a glassy-eyed heifer. With her right, she plunged an electrified rod into the cow’s brain. If the dishes were done, Macey deigned to let him skin the bodies in the dark afterwards. God knows he needed her. A righteous man obliged to kill by family trade, the stress of the ordeal would have driven him mad.

After Papa died, Barnabas (“Barnie”) sensed that his destiny was falling into place. The codger liked to say Besides whores, Barnie was the only sonuvabitch he knew who began work at sunset. But any teasing was subordinated to spates of affection in his final days. Out of three siblings, Barnie alone watched over his father. It became clear that Barnie and Macey were the sole inheritors of his estate. His sister, Dinah, went AWOL after high school and was probably dead. His brother, Ezekiel, moved to California and conceived a son during the Summer of Love. The last they’d heard is that he married a hippie girl in Salinas.
Who are you writing this pretentious garbage for?
so is it bad? is it baaaaad? or "bad"?

Bump once more. Will crit for crit.
A man sat in the park.
Another person waltz past the man.
"You." said the sitting man
"What?" asked the person.
"Oh, its you."
"I just did. No need to thank me."
"Thank you? You screwed me over!"
"Because you were an idiot."
"Where's my money!"
"I can't hand you to that. Court rules says so."
The person left. The man pulled a pistol and raised his fist up. His snout-like mouth dripping with saliva.
>It is long after sundown and a crowd of a hundred people are standing on each side of the road in their sandals and vests. Higher up, expectant faces lean out of the balconies, waiting for something to happen, though they know they are simply watching the aftermath. There is a body in the middle of the road. The shoulders are curled and a chin rests against the chest suggesting sleep. A drunk perhaps-there are enough of them in this town- collapsed on the road on his way home, now slumbering on the asphalt, oblivious to the traffic circling mere inches away. But then I see the once yellow light of the streetlamps rendered to a dull orange reflections in the pool of blood by his head.

>The linecar has parked by the side of the road and the driver is talking to the police. Inside, a blue LED light shines like the antisun on the long faces of the passengers, who sit in tight rows like seeds in an apple. There is no expression on their faces, no pointing or chattering like those who came running from their houses or crane from the balconies in their nightshirts and slippers. The day is not finished yet. There is still dust on their boots and clips in their hair. They only work around here. Those who take the linecar don’t live this close to downtown. It is late and this is the last bus for an hour. A taxi would cost them the entire days wages and it would take all night to walk back to the outskirts where the dogs have found their nightly courage to bark and bare their teeth. They do not have the luxury of treating patience as a virtue, it is simply a necessity for living.

>The man was a passenger too. As always the car had been full and so he had been standing on the back lip of the bus alongside the conductor, holding onto the metal rail that ran under the roof. It was technically illegal, but no one could remember the last time the laws had been enforced. People always needed to get home and there were never enough buses. It was a common sight around the city to see the linecars swinging around corners with up to ten people clinging onto the back like leaves on a branch. And sometimes the leaves fell.
The first lines...is the hand propping the head, the same as the one resting on her lips? Because I just tried that and my fingers reach my nose if I rest my chin on my palm.

>her pollen woke across the field
not sure this metaphor works..How does pollen wake?

>everything suffers yet suffers most before it does no longer
I like this line.

I thought the description of the Hyena stuff was graphic and it worked well too. The shift from the early paragraphs makes me want to read more to know who this strange and interesting person is

>my weaker self was slain after being gnashed and lain upon tall grass whimpering
I like this

>the daisies could tell...home then became the daisies
really like these sentances.

Overall I really liked the way you write. I kinda think the ending with the footsteps approaching doesn't work for me as it doesn't feel like the ending to a story, but merely the ending to a chapter of a larger story. Instead of saying "I was not a flower" say "I was not a daisy- I was a hyena, a vampire, lain upon tall grass" and see how that looks as an ending?

I wrote this if you would like to comment. It's an opening to a story set in Yangon.
Yes, nostalgia is lame, we've all read Proust though (I HOPE)


Abandoned vantage points omit to hide
the years I couldn't match the fury
the world without a drop of blue advanced.
Our eyes, all dark, would soar like wisps of smoke
to alien skies made canvas for familiar dyes.
The heat was different then, I can't believe
we breathed that same fragrance without knowing

and mother earth instructed beautiful
divisions, father sky suffered to be kept at bay;

it was no mystery trees connect just underground,
I recall each yard too small to hold tway.

My-self-love required no looking glass
and never looked down to find a pond,
yet what keeps me at bay now - is the great sea beyond.
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Frist chapter to my book.


"It’s 20XX, we join internet host Arthur Shannon as he digs into the work, relationships, and the philosophies of various thought leaders of music, business, politics, and science. Other than their impact on society at large these thought-leaders happen to share only thing in common, they’re robots."

It's written in a weird style not sure anyone would like it.
Awesome man thanks a lot. The fingers are curled in the hand and resting on the lips. That's why I decided to use crawling to hint at the form. I'll try to redo the ending, it was supposed to be cyclical - a hint towards the beginning, but oh well.

For you:

>It is long after sundown and a crowd of a hundred people are standing on each side of the road in their sandals and vests.

Yess. Sandals and vests made me laugh.

>Higher up, expectant faces lean out of the balconies, waiting for something to happen, though they know they are simply watching the aftermath.

In my opinion this should be rephrased so that it's more descriptive in less words while making the bridge to the body in the middle of the road. Something to the order of:

Higher up, expectant faces lean out of their balconies awaiting further commotion. (If you want you can add "amongst the aftermath", but it'll be redundant.)

There is a body in the middle of the road. The shoulders are curled and a chin rests against the chest suggesting sleep. A drunk perhaps-there are enough of them in this town- collapsed on the road on his way home, now slumbering on the asphalt, oblivious to the traffic circling mere inches away.

Few things. I dont know what curled shoulders are, but I am assuming this is a coffin pose.

I also don't think it flows well on the third sentence and could be more succinct. Might be better if it was something to the effect of:

"chest suggesting sleep - a collapsed drunk perhaps, since there are enough of them in this town."

But that also might take away the rhythm from: "collapsed...slumbering....oblivious...circling."

Also, this sort of rhythm became problematic with the imagery for me. With each mutlisyllabic word, you introduced a different piece of information of the story of the drunk, but then you continued the same piece of information from the 3rd through 4th mutlisyllabic word. I think it made it feel like there was an imbalance. This might be because the information delivery became slower so it might make the reader feel like things are getting less interesting, which it hopefully isnt.>But then I see the once yellow light of the streetlamps rendered to a dull orange reflections in the pool of blood by his head.

Maybe say dimmed...through the reflection of instead of rendered. It's moodier (if that's what you want) and alliterates. I would probably change the ending too. Maybe:

"But then I see the once yellow light of the streetlamps dimmed to a dull orange reflection from the pool of blood by his head. "

The reason the ending becomes from the pool is because the pool of blood is acting upon the dimming of the light. I think this is better.

>The linecar has parked by the side of the road and the driver is talking to the police.

Linecars are those trams that run on wires right? I would maybe change parked to stopped, because they don't really park, they just stop places. I would say park if it was out of commission.
Also, is the driver still in the car? If he is not, say he is out talking to the police. I think it'd do you really good to learn and use more descriptive and descriptively accurate/precise verbs, i.e. a tram stops, a car parks. If you broke these rules on purpose then that's different, but otherwise itd be more informative.

>Inside, a blue LED light shines like the antisun on the long faces of the passengers, who sit in tight rows like seeds in an apple.

I like that imagery of the tight rows and seeds of an apple. What's an antisun? Is that supposed to reference the color of the blue light, or that maybe it's electric? Also, is the officer inside the linecar?

>There is no expression on their faces, no pointing or chattering like those who came running from their houses or crane from the balconies in their nightshirts and slippers.

This sentence could be more succinct and improved. Grammatical irregularities.

>The day is not finished yet. There is still dust on their boots and clips in their hair. They only work around here. Those who take the linecar don’t live this close to downtown. It is late and this is the last bus for an hour. A taxi would cost them the entire days wages and it would take all night to walk back to the outskirts where the dogs have found their nightly courage to bark and bare their teeth.

Some sentences in here could also be improved. Maybe with the advice I gave earlier: more succinct.

>They do not have the luxury of treating patience as a virtue, it is simply a necessity for living.
The man was a passenger too. As always the car had been full and so he had been standing on the back lip of the bus alongside the conductor, holding onto the metal rail that ran under the roof. It was technically illegal, but no one could remember the last time the laws had been enforced. People always needed to get home and there were never enough buses. It was a common sight around the city to see the linecars swinging around corners with up to ten people clinging onto the back like leaves on a branch. And sometimes the leaves fell.

Cool image with the leaves, but leaves flow with air, not motion. This image would work if you said the passengers were on the outside of the tram. Use an image that describes enclosed flows with motion.

Overall, it's a cool feel and had me interested, but I wasn't sure what your tone was. Your themes seemed gloomy but words like render, and the imagery of sandals and vests make for levity. I also think you could improve a lot by being more analytical with your writing/studying. What I usually do is take things I think sound good and am fond of, and then analyze them to connect the bridge between what I feel and the intellectual process of writing.

I would make more changes, but I'm a little tired and want you to have this critique before the 404.
>Spread out upon the firmament above was a grey haze, a blurry sea of thick, dull-colored clouds. Through this heavy blanket in the sky there shined the sun's essence as naught but dour rays of a drained gold, all left sparse and astray. The rays trickled downwards gently, weakly. Then on the earth where the light nearly failed to touch were beds of perishing grass. With white frost encasing the dull blades, the ground bore the semblance of a frozen lake, and from the white sheets of frost there came sundry little imperfections. Barren bushes and brambles and at times a tree with thin limping branches, unadorned by foliage. Between all such exhibits were stains of death— patches of naked earth; patches that contrasted against the washed-out husks and pale grass with the likeness of a hole into an abyss, dominated by a deep, dark color. They appeared less so as dirt then as the waters of a tainted, murky ocean. Almost as if beneath the white and the grey there was a vast sea of black mud.
you take some fuck
and some shit
and some fuck
and some shit
you got a fuck shit stack
a fuck shit stack
its a stack of fuck shit on top of itself
this is the kind of quality content I expect from /lit/
oh, gosh
the look in your eyes
it really turns me on
when you say no
gods, i can't help myself
know that it's not my fault
please don't blame me
for i was once taken, too
My mother's firm brown arm
Tentative and slow, set
The rustic kennel on the tiger rug
With a red scarf hung over its door
Like a rose petal over a beehive’s mouth

Inquisitive, a pink nose slithers near
Sniffing the changed air
The molested air, drizzled with immigrant smells

The white fuzz attached to the nose
Halts at the crate's curtain;
His fine whiskers meditating

Our anxious human eyes gleaming above him
Like fairy lights in a supernal ring

My mother's plum hand lifts the scarf exposing
Two weak yellow eyes in a vortex of shadowy fur,
Making sure you see both of them.


nigga did you rape somebody, the fuck?

idk if this poem is about rape or not or if it's a self-insert but it's not valid at all, the speaker's willful participation in the cycle of abuse isn't poetic, more so just creepy, i hope this isn't actually about you and it's just some creepy character you've created
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Hi thank you so much for the feedback, it's really helpful to me, I'm very appreciative of it and will keep your advice close at hand as I write.

By the way, here's a pic of a linecar..it's a Burmese-English word so perhaps I should describe it better for a foreign audience.
I spend my life on the move
My life on the road, town to town
City to city, time zone to time zone
Success keeps you busy
So I can't complain how life is
But in a life like this you tend to develop some vices
My wife is my life and I'd never cheat on her
But there are one or two things I do keep from her
I have my addictions or rather my addictions have me
Sometimes the shadow of my shadow is, all I can be
I find my self alone in different hotel rooms just me and my thoughts
And that milk stained moon
I'm drawn to walk the street as my heart rate rises
A heavy coat, a scarf, a hat all become my disguises
I made it known I suffer from nosebleeds and migraines
To explain the occasional mood swings and blood stains
There are over a thousand people murdered in this world each day
So as I drift from town to town nobody looks my way
Its an addiction and I ain't proud of it
But the power you feel there's no cloud in it
The fear before the fact, as they know some things wrong
The vain attempt to scream their muffled swan song
The struggle, the shock in their eyes
My grip around their throat as all their hope dies
The sudden loss of breath there is no thrill equal
My name is Johnny Depp and I kill people
Bump plz. Will do crit for crit. Looking for feedback and critique.
Tea-stained lugworm worming slowly
Prayed for worm-god hoped unholy
Sought for feet with legs to to stand
Against the tow of tided sand.

Froth and bribble held his eyes
Salted slits no tongue for lies.
fuck, extra 'to'...
Nah, not interested. You’ve bumped this thread multiple times simply drawing attention to your posts, when you could have easily given feedback on one or two posts as well, and probably gotten some in return.
As the second king’s seventh child spoke of the leprous men
their number the Roman Emperor took into account.
I think if you we're a little more thorough, you'd see that I gave someone pretty thorough feedback, please look through the replies of my original post.

Now if you saw that feedback I gave and still hold the same position, then I think it's fair on my part to withhold sincere feedback for those I'd like to devote the energy to, mainly those who gave me feedback, which has been 1 so far. I'd even say that I am being generous and genuine since my feedback has been more sincere than others I have seen and not just simply vague.

I do not want this thread to be about the politics of my giving feedback so please do not reply and let us just move on.

Also, bump:

I really like your word choice and sense of rhythm and description. Some parts are lost on me (is bribble even a word?) but still satisfying if only for their aesthetic qualities. Technically speaking, my biggest hang up is “against” in the fourth line, I think contracting it to ‘gainst flows better with the rest of the rhythm, but also sounds archaic and there might be a better alternative. Overall nice work.

>giving one person feedback entitles me to spam my shit
I’m only singling you out because you reflect a broader issue in these threads
Thanks a lot man, yeah made up bribble, liked how it sounded.

I'll work on the fourth. I have a pet hate 'gainst those sort of abbreviations but cheers for the feedback. Much appreciated.
Toward Humanistic Systems

# I.

The *cobra effect* describes the unintended consequences of a system, caused by perverse incentives from ill-defined goals.

The story goes that during British colonial rule in India, the government wanted to cull the cobra populations in Delhi. They did this by paying out a bounty for every cobra killed.

Initially, this worked out fine — people killed the cobras that they found, and turned them over to the authorities. Eventually, people figured out that it was more profitable for to breed even more cobras, and kill those too.

When the government realized this, they discontinued this system, and people released the cobras that they had been breeding, making the problem even worse than before.

# II.

The *paperclip maximizer* is a thought experiment in AI risk that shows the (hypothetical) adverse consequences of ill-defined goals at their most extreme.

The premise is as follows: suppose you program a (sufficiently advanced) robot to maximize the number of paperclips. It might start by (reasonably) collecting all the paperclips it could find, and bringing them to you.

But after it does that, it might also realize that it could convert other things into paperclips — things like raw metal, other machines, and the atoms in the human body.

# III.

The cobra killer says "maximize the number of dead cobras at all costs."

The paperclip robot says "maximize the number of paperclips at all costs."

The student says "maximize my grade at all costs".

The corporation says "maximize shareholder value at all costs".

The billion-user social network says "connect people at all costs".

Social systems and technological systems are not so different from each other, in the sense that the same principle outlined here underlie both of them. The most harmful systems are the ones designed with the sort of singular focus that ultimately doesn't align with the higher-level goals of the designers.

I never said giving one person feedback entitles me to spam. I said that I felt it was fair to withhold the energy I was giving in feedbacks so that the reciprocal feedback I gave would be of higher quality and more sincere.

I hope you are intentionally being dishonest and do not actually reason the way you do, it unnecessarily makes things hostile and muddled.

I am glad you did not critique me anyway, as it probably would not have made for quality feedback.
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>Both of them turned to observe the eight foot tall, green-skinned, horn-covered editor standing in the corner. He started intently at them while munching on a large bag of potato chips. “Grok feels uncomfortable. Grok feels he should not be hearing this discussion firsthand.”
i love it
You're overthinking this shit. At most OP should aspire not to be a retarded faggot and post the old thread in the OP. Just read the first line of something and stop if you want. No criticism is telling
Riveted to the wall next to the fire extinguisher and the evacuation map was one of the few remaining Gusset Boards, its pin-ups frayed and fading.
Some time ago, a small splinter group of the HR depo got together to tackle the problem of crew moral. Bare-knuckle boxing had recently been outlawed due to the expense involved in mending a human jaw and although the countless mess-hall bars were turning a tidy profit, a hungover crew was not a productive one. There needed to be something to occupy the minds and spirits of the restless mob of humanity that sweltered between the steal walls of the ship, other than trying to find the bottom of a bottle.
An inquiry was held, committees were formed and motions were passed. After a few weeks of paperwork, an initiative was started. The Committee for the Advancement of Mental Stimulation had been formed.
The idea was simple; an active mind is a healthy mind and healthy minds are less likely to be lost to despair and drink. Ideas were tabled. The ship would become a new utopia of fresh ideas and unbridled intellectual discourse. Mechanics and deck swabbers alike would be transformed from drunken slobs to genial scholars. Pool tables and beer pong would be replaced with chess boards and open lectures. Command had a new vision and it was grand.
This new paradigm would be rolled out slowly, stealthily so as not to upset the status quo. One of the first indicators of this new revolution were to be the appearance of specially made bulletin boards cover in simple mind games and puzzles, compleat with small prizes of additional rations and wages awarded to the first person of each deck to complete each one. Puzzles were to be refreshed daly and those with a mind to do so could make a moderately healthy profit in their spare time, if only they were sober enough to compete.
Due to the committee nature of the design process involved, these were to be given the uninspired name of ‘Guess-it!’ boards.
Driven by either a morbid sense of humor or a strict adherence to mindless bureaucracy, the maintenance crew fastened more than 700 of the newly printed boards in prominent locations about the ship, complete with the appalling typo of ‘Gusset! Board’ blazzened in bright primary colour along their upper edge. The design department had earned themselves a reputation for their efficiency, if not their accuracy.
Within hours, the intellectual propaganda around the ship had been pasted over with the long legs of stockinged models from the pages of the lingerie catalogs that were circled around the ship as a form of black market currency. The cleaning crews tasked with the removal of said images were unable to remove them faster than they were being put up, although they did live like kings for a short period, selling the removed photos back to those who had put them up in the first place.
Defeated at the first battle, the Committee for the Advancement of Mental Stimulation languished and died. Most of the Gusset Boards were removed or stolen but, on the whole, their inception raised moral far more than a small assortment of crosswords and riddles ever would have.
I spent my summer rubbing the sun like a cat.
Welcome to my family.
My first sexual experience was highly unconventional. I've always been reclusive and more interested in videogames than social interaction, given the degree of control I can exert over the former compared with the latter. There is a bare minimum of human interaction a person must achieve in order to function, and when I was fifteen years old the videogame Garry's Mod glutted me for interaction. The varied gamemodes and mechanics made for interesting trust-based mechanics, meaning people would need to try convincing others that they were being honest.

A girl playing an online videogame is an astonishingly rare occurrence. So rare that the mere discernible presence of one can drastically change the dynamics of a server. Suddenly it's less about playing the game and more about impressing a member of the opposite sex, as if we are all silver-back gorillas or as if such impression would lead to any actionable result like coitus. Given the frequency I played Garry's Mod, I was quite good at winning. That skill lead her to align herself with me, and we talked about working together against everyone else.

Besides my skill at the game, she was also attracted to my personality and apparent intelligence. We decided to become friends on Skype (remember that shit?) and from their our conversation spurred. We talked about our future plans, our mutual interests, and about ourselves. Somehow the conversation involved sore feet, at which point I said that I could give great foot massages, which intrigued her. Then I started to describe the foot massage I would give her (I'm not a footfag btw), in a slow rhythmic way. I described moving up her calves, her thighs, and higher onto her abdomen and chest, coalescing with kissing and sucking on her nipples. Around this point I realized that her breathing had become heavier and more even, and she was obviously masturbating to what I was saying. This was also around when I told her I had to go to bed, since it was the first time I had stayed up till 4 in the morning. She was very disappointed, and rightfully so, because I felt uncomfortable with the realization she was masturbating, and so I didn't keep going all the way to get her off (which I now highly regret). So my first sexual experience was skype sex with a girl two years older than me who I met playing Garry's Mod. Hopefully my last sexual experience is more memorable, despite it not needing to be remembered long.
Is this from your diary desu?
Pretty much. I find it hard to stay motivated while writing stories, but it's easier if I write about memories. It was just practice and I don't expect feedback
I mean it's terrible... grammar mistakes, cringey diction, and the like but at least it's honest. Far more so than most posts here.
Yukari Yukari
Please kill me
What are the grammar mistakes?
Got a lot some unnecessary commas. Don't need the "also" at the beginning of the last paragraph. Last sentence is weird with tenses and shit. Should read something like, "Hopefully my last sexual experience will be more memorable, although it will not need to be remembered for long."
strike through that "some" lol
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>I like the idea but I think personally it would be more fun to have the setting back in the home galaxy/starsystem and use this as a kind of pushing point for a galactic war kind of like the assassination of Franz Ferdinand in ww1. You could build some long standing rivalries between some of the empires and have this set them off. You could even have some Manhattan-Project esque secret programs using the FTL drive tech for weapons of mass destruction. Personally I would find a massive galaxy wide war more page-turning than a struggle for survival in the pitch black darkness of space.
Thanks for the feedback! Right now I'm trying to plan out the story and it's in three phases.
>Early Years
This is when humanity first gains light speed travel. Imagine if it happened now and each individual state would pursue their own goals. This part of the story would be focused exactly on that WMD aspect of light speed travel and how it would be regulated.
It's also when the first 'Dynasties' begin to form, but I'm afraid that would sound too cliche. I can't think of any decent alternatives but the current plan is to use each dynasty as your typical nation/ethnic proxy.
>Mid year
This is after the dynasties had got their fighting out of the way and have developed a UN-like organization they begin to pool their research to achieve a Jump Drive.
The Dynasties come together to design the ship and its construction begins. Once the first jump happens is when they become stranded, and the loss of power for an extended period of time is what will force the harsh conditions that create the seed for the medieval/feudalistic style I want the rest of it to take.
Late Year
Really happy for feedback on this, but I want to timeskip a couple hundred years in the future so that there has been time to forget technologies, the population grows meek, and religious/military/royalty have taken on a typical powerful role of their medieval counterparts.
I would be interested in the larger context of this poem, which I assume might be granted by the rest of the collection thereof. Without it, some adjectives here seem rather superfluous, such as rustic, and I have a bit of trouble grasping the full purpose of what is being told - communication-wise that is; aesthetically I think I know where this is going. Another issue I have is with the penultimate stanza, which appears to be mosty filler - and yes, there should be something there to enable tension to develop, but it would be better if it also had a purpose of its own.

That being said, I find this poem quite refreshing. It captures the images and impressions of a child's point of view vividly, and has a strong narrative streak, with a sort of prosaic quality that I should imagine to lend itself quite well to writing -rustic- short stories - but not every poem requires sound imagery and elaborate subordination.
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The pod dropped at his balcony door, wind held back by invisible shield. He stepped inside and fell into the comfort. Then jumped up. Windows flew wide open room was booming rock music. Screens bright lights. He was still buzzed but not ready to come down. Pacing the room he found the baggy in his pocket, and wanted just a taste. Just finish it off before you go. Dipping a small straw, followed by a strong snort. Secondary huffs to get it all the way down. Walking back for water to wash what was stuck in his throat. Distorted face in glossy steel, eye catching themselves. Pinprick pupils in a reflection. A clammy palm slapped the countertop, his breath caught once. Then again, even shorter. Heart started burning, the chest was seized, mouth sucked in and bared his teeth, he stopped, then fell down. Hot batch. The kit, he dragged open a drawer pulling it out until it fell on him, one hand grabbing a plastic bag, ripping it apart with the other. Not breathing. Grey shadows closing in. The syringe came to his mouth. Gasping, it closed around one end, pulling off the cap. He drove the syringe into his thigh and pressed, a small breath, then a huge one, he lay there letting out a long sigh.
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I like this a lot desu
>to island
>waters colours
>long ass explanation telling us the colour of the ocean and that it smells like salt
>waves SEEM to strike - they either do or dont
>run on sentence separated by commas and retarded descriptions of jobs as if a boat engine uses coal or some shit
>rusted iron
>lots of missing punctuation and run on sentences
>long description on what fishing traps look like, even telling us they have rope on them
>doesnt understand show, don't tell

Are you retarded?
>That feel when the thread is about to 404 without anybody reviewing my poem
>says man who hasn't reviewed anyone else's work
Except I have.
I'll review your poem. Link it. I'm not knowledgable about poetry though.

If you are: >>11441710
I am >>11442000
I still think it's bad.
L’identité en soi, nous-même :

C’était le jour où jamais les éclairs n’abattirent autant leur colère sur la terre innocente. Avec pour uniques yeux leur rage, ils enflammaient les plaines paisibles, y réveillaient les arbres, de stupeur réduits en cendres, ou même percutaient la roche pour l’insuffler de leur voix et l’eau pour lui donner leurs gestes mortelles… La vie brûlait et ce qui était mort parlait en leur nom ; les sons s’élevaient de même dans le ciel, pour s’écraser à nouveau…

Les braises de leur œuvre soufflaient un vacarme de folie, une brise que seul un être aussi volatile que l’homme pouvait respirer en pleine raison ; oui, car eux, les hommes, observaient, fuyaient et revenaient, et surtout, mourraient.

Certains se jetaient dans les flammes, se consumer de curiosité ; d’autres se perchaient aux arbres pour comprendre, ne serait-ce que par la seconde d’un coup, la colère que les nuages pleuraient jusqu'à se transpercer ; certains attendaient pour se rouler dans les cendres, créant de la joie d’un désert macabre, avec quelques-uns qui, repartant, en rapportaient dans leurs mains comme si un souvenir amenait la maîtrise d’une situation passée.

Et puis la plupart, comme les autres créatures peuplant les maux des dieux, partaient de peur de mourir. C’était leur manière de vivre le phénomène. À leur manière, ils se saisirent pour de bon. La seule vie simplement vécue valait l’attente du néant, et c’est vrai que la simplicité remplit entièrement nos ressentis de la complexité qui nous entoure.
which is your poem
quit speaking in made up languages
I am going to sleep now. Will respond to the review in the morning (if there is one)

Nice poem anon

Good imagery, and flow and rhythm and symbols and gripping.

If anything it would be interesting to hear after, if you tried to maybe write another poem related, or next ll section of stanza(s) the nature of the great sea beyond and why it keeps you at bay.

Don't really have any critic or advice, the poem as it is is quite tightly knit and I don't know what I could say to improve it
>the nature of the great sea
She moved to another continent, anon.

I could write something on that, but there might be no use padding that one simple sentence.
Yes, thats why I didnt say to pad it, but to have a maybe part ll of the poem, where you go into why the great sea beyond keeps you at bay, or a separate poem, because this is quite nice as a separate self contained piece, and yes I like the bay word play, but of course to be honest, I couldnt think of anything else to say about your poem so tried to say anything and thats all I thought :)


Vast and stormy are her currents
and thunderous her moods
when she waved at me that final goodbye
my ship was wrecked

off the coast, I was not coasting
nor a rainbow to guide me
but a sky of grayscale
and the sun but a gulping gull
wishing I was a guppie
A solemn dusk settles in this quiet town. The air is damp, and heavy, my every breath feeling shallow, and exerted. A warm headache rests in my brain as I ash my last cigarette. The houses and the trees across the street from my porch are all shaded the same bluish-gray, just like the clouds and the sky. I stand up from my chair, and walk down the front steps to the sidewalk with my hands in the pockets of my hoodie. I never really know where I'm going, or when I'll get there, but I don't think that's the point. The first raindrop hits my cheek. I look up to see them falling. A wall of droplets come down from the sky in unison. They seem to fall so slowly in the sky, and so much faster near the ground. Pelting the road, and grass, and leaves with their rhythmic pitter patter. I pull my hood over my head before my hair gets too wet, the sound the raindrops make when they hit it is comforting, the splash of every drop muffled by the fabric. It starts to rain heavier. The pitter-patter turns to a droning sloshing sound as the water pools on the ground. I head for cover in a half-run, half-walk across the street, chin pressed against my chest and hand over my jeans pocket to save my phone from being soaked. A stream of water rushes alongside the curb into the gutter on the other side of the road. A car honks it's horn and I spin my head to the right, I can barely make out the streaks of light from it's headlights approaching me through the downpour. It screeches to a halt a few feet away. I hop up onto the curb and ignore driver's angry yells in the sound of the rain as I continue my half-run to shelter. I find a dry bench with pillars and a roof over it in a nearby park. Sitting down, and letting out a sigh of relief even as my clothes mush against the seat. I pull out my pack and my lighter, only to remember that it's empty, before briefly profaning and throwing it on the ground beside me.
This started off good but fell off when she decided to fuck satan. Still funny though.
Cheesey but well written
The look alone could break my heart

Her soft eyes welling up with tears, and her lips trembling

She had to go

I should have known

She won't stop apologizing

I can't find the words to make her stay

She's been thinking about this for months

I still remember the first time I saw her like it was yesterday

She says it's just for a while

I knew she was lying

Her bags are packed

I didnt really think that would be the last time we kissed

This house feels empty

I changed our voicemail

The clerk at the coffee shop still asks where she is

The days aren't as bright

I still think she'll be beside me when I wake up in the morning

Are you the same person who wrote the lucifer one? They're both about being a horny teenage girl, might just be a coincidence.
It'll be archived indefinitely on a bazillion different third party websites like Fireden.

Any feedback?
Like that first one, prose bit. Real comfy, really brings the reader there, on those mellow days, wandering through rain, real nice
Here's mine:

Here's my critiques:
It's not like you have to follow this rule, but you did mess up the pronouns when you say "...he found the baggy in his pocket" and then "Just finish it off before you go". Of course, people change perspectives all the time in fiction, particularly stream-of-consciousness.

If it's intentional, I'd maybe put in "Just finish it off before you go, he thought" or make a separate line or paragraph, since this would indicate a better shift from a removed narration to a direct consciousness.

I really like the pace of it after about "Secondary huffs" line. Great use of punctuation, each line has its natural length or "breath" to it. You're a good writer. Particularly, I like the shifts from mouth to leg, since it seems like you're saying any of his veins could be a mouth - which is good imagery. I like that it's not done in a simile , e.g. "his veins were like a mouth". Very subtle and interesting work.

Great voice and imagery, but I don't like how personal and obvious it is. "My ship was wrecked" could be changed to just "Then a ship was wrecked" and the reader can piece together that the ship is them [voice], or theirs.

Like the alliteration in the last two lines... "sky of grayscale" is a soothing yet melancholic image

Kind of reminds me of the Ancient Mariner in some parts, with the gull (in AM, it's an albatross). It would benefit from intertextualising that, for me at least. You could say something about an albatross around their neck.
Smelly smelling Smell smelled smelly smelling smelly smell, "Smelly smell smelly smelling Smell smelling smells smelly."
Lol I remember writing something to this effect a while ago.

He, Stanley, stood standing. Stanley's standing stood outstandly. And he, Andy , fancied Stanley. So Andy stood with Stanley standing. Thus, Stanley's Andy's and Andy's Stanley's fannies fanned away with manly canty.
>couldn't hide my sorrow a moment of silence
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How are you Timmy?" Timmy excitedly asked.
"I am fine Tommy." Tommy excitedly would reply.
"You look sad Tummy!!!" Tommy exclaimed.
Tommy's face was elongated and brazen, yet had a faint air of reservedness about it. Tommy sat on his big round, brown, wooden, four-legged chair.
Today Tommy was going shopping for bananas, pears, apples, coconuts, shoes, socks, toothpaste, toilet paper, a brand new pen, a brand new folder, scissors, staples, oranges, a pen, a book, a comic and a nice new brown sweater.
Timmy lifted his arm up to his chin and then moved his chin toward his arm. Then he took three deep breathes in and then took three long breathes out. Then Timmy took three deep breathes in and took three deep breathes out. Then Tommy raised his arm into the air and walked two steps to the right. Outside was a horse. Tommy was feeling confused. He folded his arms. Timmy thought that Tommy must have not gone to work because Tommy knows that Timmy is a lawyer and Tommy's suit, which lawyers often wear, was still in the cupboard.

thanks that was some real amatuer hour shit on my part.

Thank you. The context is that my mom got a new cat and had to introduce it to our old one like this so they don't fight over territory.
would read a novella like this
The tiredness relaxes me
My feet scout for the rejuvenating sand

The quiet paradise of cool water expands
Like a great net thrown over a hidden kingdom

The slender music of smoke
From burning wood
Is twirled by a cunning ghost hand

I am drunk with the performance
I could drop into the lake
This job is maddening. I am far beyond the necessary prerequisites for a lowly pencil pusher. The paper work is all the same, simple, yet tedious. There's always a line at the photocopier. My boss is the CEO's son, I'd be surprise if he was at all any more literate than the 10 cent prostitutes he hires as secretaries. That doesn't stop him from blaming me for every mishap on this floor though, as if my capability were at all an indication of my position here, like me doing twice as much work as the 14 people in the same size cubicle as mine, all working under his untrained subordinate (A drinking buddy of his), means that I should be responsible for every downfall of this department even though I hold a pseudo-entry level position, with half as much pay as the supervisor who sits on his ass in a cushy office all day and pesters the glorified set of balloons with a woman attached who answers his calls. My car has 4 seats, I got it at half-price because the rear passenger side chair was set on fire through the window. My head touches the roof, the steering wheel hits my knees when I turn it, the engine sounds like a 40 year smoker hacking out a tar ridden lung when it starts, matching the soot it spews from it's tailpipe to a tee. I wait in traffic at rush hour on the way home. And again in line at the grocery store. My watch runs out of batteries halfway home, so I have to turn back to scrape together whatever change I can for a new one. The light flickers in my rented apartment. The door hangs off of the frame slightly, so I have to prop it up and realign it so it shuts again. Someone tried to break in before the previous tenants moved out and the landlord never fixed it. My fridge doesn't work like it should, my water jug is lukewarm and hungry man dinners half-melted. Thank God I get to loosen to my tie, take off these shoes that are a size too small. Crack open a beer and set the tv dinner table in front of my lazy-boy, and my dog curled up in his tattered bed beside me. I'll buy him a new one when I can. Then I run my hand over my stubble thinking about what time I have to wake up tomorrow to shit, shave, and shower until letterman comes on and it's time for bed. The last thing I see at night is the red numbers of that damn alarm clock before my eyelids shut.
Not really looking for a crit, but some advice. I'm writing a 1984/Brave New World style dystopian future that takes socialism and social justice to its extreme. It's about 40 years in the future. No crazy new technology or flying cars or anything. I just dont know how to really cue people into the fact its the future, changes that too place and keep it engaging in the opening chapter. I feel like i'm forced to just go 'oh ya, its 2060 in case you were wondering'.
Sorry I didn't realize it didn't abort in time
You could:

Start it on new years or a birthday

Have a character mention something significant that happened in the past and how much time has passed since then

Mention the model of a car in a banner a character sees as they walk down the street

Include a signed and dated letter somewhere in the story

Have a character look at a photo and mention how long it's been since it was taken

Have a character mention someone that's died and how long they've been dead

Have someone mention something that's being done, like building a tower or something and how it will take 5 more years. And then have someone say 2065 is a long ways away etc.

That's about all I got.
Stop using so many pointless words. Trim the fat and remove the adjectives/adverbs/etc and unnecessary descriptors.

>I am far beyond the necessary prerequisites for a lowly pencil pusher.

I am an overqualified pencil pusher. 6 words vs 12. Same sentence and information.

>he was at all any more literate
he was any more literate. the 'at all' adds nothing and is completely fluff.

>...on this floor though, as if my capability were at all an indication...
Remove though. Remove at all. This sentence is also too long. Break it up into smaller sentences with clearer wording for new thoughts. Also, write out numbers. You do it for some (twice) and not for others (10 cent, 4 seats, 14 people).

>rear passenger side chair was set on fire through the window
Awkward. Reword and make clearer what this means.

Run on sentence for car description. Break up into clear thoughts and sentences instead of endless commas.

>thank god i get to loosen to my tie...
Remove to my. Put 'and' instead of the comma for your shoes part.

>Crack open a beer...
Start with I crack open or indicate it is you opening it. It's a new thought unrelated to previous sentence.

>and my dog curled...
change to with my dog... and remove the comma before it.

>Then I run
You changed from present to future tense. Remove then. Rest of sentence makes no sense. You are thinking about what to do tomorrow and describe shit, shave and shower for your routine, but include until letterman comes on and time for bed. Rewrite the whole thing and make clear you are thinking about tomorrow and then a new thought on what you have left to do tonight (shit shower and watch letterman).
started out promising, then quickly turned into a mess of empty references. If you're seriously considering putting this in a book to be published, you should know that it would age like shit.
quote the re-quote and keep on trying...
and by the way how dare you
Any thoughts guys?
Can anyone critique the wordpress link?
Alphabetically organized shopping list with absurd items followed by a reason and authored by sketchy people.
Thanks. I prefer calling it an abecedarian list poem...
You can also call it trash. I dont think anyone will be able to tell.
Any reasons?
What is the significance of each item on the list in relation to the larger context besides any perceived randomness and silliness/absurdity? There's no story in the items.
There is, it's supposed to be a tongue-in-cheek description of some swinger party. I may have not made that clear, but I don't feel poetry should always be obvious.
I think it would still remain that the alphabetical order is gratuitous.
Restricting your poetry is what is common to poetry; what separates it from prose. In the past, we usually used meter or rhyme.

However, in contemporary poetry, this includes stuff like anaphora, abecedarian (although this was used even in medieval poetry), list, cut-up, acrostic, block, etc. Try it out, you might come up with something you find weird or interesting.
'Teachings of Das Stirn'

Das Stirn spits at the Protestant and Catholic,
Das Stirn kills the ideals in his mind,
Das Stirn fights off ghosts sent by Christendom,
Das Stirn exorcises that ghastly ‘progress’ of history,
Das Stirn uses machinery for Self, seizing it.
Das Stirn critiqued Marx and responded to him,
Das Stirn dubbed ironically ‘Saint Max’ by Marx,
Das Stirn is drawn by Engels in pencil,
Das Stirn looks like Erik Satie in it,
Das Stirn has an internet following who misinterpret
Das Stirn’s teachings, probably due to German grammar,
Das Stirn uses gendered varieties of ‘Ego’ in
Das Stirn’s book: Der Einzige und sein Eigentum,
Das Stirn influenced communists, fascists, anarchists, capitalists alike.
Das Stirn keeled o’er in the year 1856.

Enjoying the near rhymes, 'sand, expands, hand'... very subtle but nice poem. Quite sonically interesting, even if it's simple. It's either pensive or thoughtless, and it's nice to not know which.
There was this guy, and he was selling boots. I asked him for one for a child, and he showed me a really nice pair
"For sale: baby shoes, never worn" he said, and I bought them, and oh man they were good
My child loved them boots so much. Hmmm just thinking about wearing those devils makes me think about this guy selling them
Sometimes I think, why would the guy even want to sell them? They are just splendid
Simply delicious
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Can you keep the shitposting to a minimum in these threads?
I understand you won't give critique to my work? I can understand that, but there is no need to call it shitpost
You didn't even bother to use punctuation, and I thought it was because of "Hmmm" and "Simply delicious," which for me reminds me of this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1dRBWyf6z8
Oh, I like this guy
I also like books!
Thanks to the anon who said he liked the vocab, but any other critiques of this would be appreciated/reciprocated
I enjoyed the vocabulary too. But you're also great at flow and pace. What I particularly like are turns of phrases like "eyes full of stupid glory" or "watched his prey with naked lust". But the best is the part where shrikes are "spilling music" as they fly off in fear... very nice. Simple yet effective.

There's also a nice line with "His... ; his... ; his" which shows you know how to effectively use repetition in a good way. I barely noticed it, it was that seamless.

Only discrepancies I noticed were 1) "Why then shouldn't..." does not end in a question mark. I might be wrong about that, but thought it was worth mentioning. 2) Are there even full Spaniards in Cuba, or is that his mistake?

Overall, some of the best work I've seen here. You've got a great voice and pace, know how to use repetition well, and never derivative. Every line felt fresh.

Here's my work, but I also just posted this: https://vorezine.wordpress.com/2018/07/16/false-memory-greek-easter-in-rockhampton-queensland-d-akers/
Gonna make my heart burst, anon. I’ll return the favor when I get off for lunch.
Alright, so, the bad news is that this is all coming from someone pretty woefully behind in his poetry reading. The good news is that I love it. But I'm only going to be able to account for that response in fairly visceral (rather than technical terms). I find the natural sort of shape both of the pieces take to be deeply stimulating, both the abecedarian tumble of the first piece or the ovoid/sacred-heart-ish swell and taper of the second. Thematically, I think False Memory is the stronger of the two pieces. You use the image of the false/dilapidated/wooden sacred heart pretty beautifully and the way it is interwoven with the dreamy water-color of childhood Easter is just lovely, not to mention I am again a sucker for cool formatting in poetry, and the heart shape makes me smile. Shopping List does less for me, frankly. Though I do enjoy the tumble and flow of it, it does not carve out a textured mental space in the way that False Memory does.

In summation: good stuff. I didn't even intend for this to be a compensatory dick-sucking for you saying you liked my excerpt.

Also, if you are interested in having this published, I would suggest shooting a submission over to a magazine called Flapperhouse. They have published some stuff of mine and I feel like this (False Memory in particular) would be the kind of stuff they would snap up quick.
Ah shit, it's great you told me but they won't accept previously published (even online, like here or on wordpress) work. I do have other poems, but I might need to work on new stuff anywya.That's great you told me about this place though, since I will definitely submit something 'unpublished'.

Thanks for your nice comments, it is nice coming from someone as good at writing as you! I think you're right that the Shopping List poem is far more cerebral, and less good at being a poem that might 'carve out' a space in the mind.
For sure, man. Give them a try. They're a great little press. And best of luck to you.
I appreciate the instructional way in which you are approaching this conversation, but I still am of the opinion that the content itself should warrant an abecedarian structure, whether or not in the past the structure came first. At the very least I think the content and structure should share ground. An abecedarian shopping list doesn't make sense unless, say, the narrator was OCD or whatever else would warrant that behavior.

I also understand that great poetry in the past does not necessarily connect the form/structure to the poetry content, but some do. And it might be something to look into.

I think the fact that your poem is a lost works well though.

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