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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Fragments and Feedback for Short Works » The Rider

   
Author Topic: The Rider
77chevy
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I was so pleased with the comments from my first post, that I decided to post 13 from another story. This is a 2500 word story. Please post or email if you'd like to read the whole thing and comment/critique. Also, I welcome any comments and critiques on the top 13.

As the beings moved closer to one another, the rider played along the margins of one of the minds, looking for gaps and loosened edges. He'd always had a knack for riding, but more than the others, he knew how to feel a mind out and make an effective connection. He found a spot now and insinuated himself in and around it.
The first thing that came to him was sight. That was unexpected, but not unwelcome. He saw long dark strands of hair, then the face of a woman. It was fascinating, but he could only see what the one he rode wished to see, never in control. The gaze moved downward to the woman’s breasts which moved rhythmically. The rider knew of animal sex. He had learned of it from other riders, but had never


Posts: 21 | Registered: Feb 2005  | Report this post to a Moderator
keldon02
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Looks like I can get first shot at this one unless somebody posts while I'm typing.

First, if using third person omniscient narration, I would direct immediate attention to the rider and his viewpoint, with less initial focus on the people. I like "The rider played..." better than "As the beings..." (Unless you consider refocussing entirely on the people from first person viewpoint of the rider.)

Second I wouldn't let him look at things until after he gained sight.

I liked the second paragraph better.

[This message has been edited by keldon02 (edited February 28, 2005).]


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plmorgan
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I like the concept that you have of riding into another beings mind, it opens up a lot of possibilities. The only problem I have with your opening is there seems to be a contradiction in the first and second paragraphs.

Quote
He'd always had a knack for riding, but more than the others, he knew how to feel a mind out and make an effective connection.

Then, quote
The rider knew of animal sex. He had learned of it from other riders, but had never

In the first you imply a very experienced rider then in the second he seems less experienced. It's a small point but the contradiction bothers me some, but not necessarily enough to make me stop reading.

Pat


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Jaina
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I'm interested. Send it over and I'll take a look.

--Jaya


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Jsteg1210
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I'd be interested as well. Seems like an intrigueing idea.
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Rocklover
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Hey Chevy, I'll go for a ride. Send it over.
Judith

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Christine
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Hi, Chevy. I don't think I've formally introduced myself yet. Fragments and Feedback is so full of new people now. It seems we haven't scared you off yet, so I'm going to give it a try.

You've presented me with a pretty good hook here. The best element of it is a sense of strangeness and of the unknown. There are things here that are taking a ride in people's minds and that's pretty neat. I want to know why and what they are, exactly, and those questions will keep me reading.

"As the beings moved closer to one another, the rider played along the margins of one of the minds, looking for gaps and loosened edges."

The term, "beings" confused me. I assumed, after reading the entire intro, that you meant humans, but maybe you don't. If you do, I think the more clarity you can provide in the opening sentence, the more of a hook it provides. Ironically, this is more true when your hook is veiled in mystery and shadow. Tell us what you know, what you can tell us and we'll want to know the rest.

" He'd always had a knack for riding, but more than the others, he knew how to feel a mind out and make an effective connection."

When you say, "but more than the others," what do you mean, exactly? I'm not sure if it's modifying the first part of the sentence or the last...as if his knack is more than the others or his ability to feel a mind out and make an effective connection is more than the others. I assume you mean other riders, but that's not clear either. In fact, if you don't mind my suggestion, I would cut out the middle part, use a semicolon to separate the two clauses, and call it good. If comparing him to others is truly important then there is plenty of time to do that.

" He found a spot now and insinuated himself in and around it."

Why "now?" It always sounds strange in past tense and in this case I don't think it's necessary.

" It was fascinating, but he could only see what the one he rode wished to see, never in control."

This seems like a strange time and way to say this. I guess I am looking for something the rider wants to see that he is being kept from seeing because he is not in ctonrol. As written, it feels a bit like a nonsequetor. Also, tacking "never in control." is not grammtically correct, I think. It's a phrase that doesn't really belong in this sentence.


All right, I'm done nitpicking. I'm going to read the other comments now.


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