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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Fragments and Feedback for Short Works » Holiday Short - not sci-fi

   
Author Topic: Holiday Short - not sci-fi
Wildstar
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Christmas was the best time of the year at Cleveland Court Elementary School. It was the time when we accomplished the least amount of class work, had three or four parties, and put on the annual Christmas play. I call it a play and not a pageant because it was by no means a colorful spectacle or an elaborate theatrical affair, as the Bridgeport Dictionary defines pageant. The plays were usually a disaster, but we usually succeed in making it a dramatic one.

Miss Hinshaw, our school's librarian, wrote these plays. She was about thirty years old and one of the better looking teachers at our school. I don't think she meant to become a librarian after college, she always referred to it as being a conciliation prize in the game we call life. I never

[This message has been edited by Kathleen Dalton Woodbury (edited February 26, 2008).]


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annepin
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The writing is smooth and lovely. However, I don't get a sense of what the story is. The first paragraph summarizes an elementary school's xmas celebrations, the second seems to drift off into a perspective of the librarian.

Nor am I confident of who the narrator is. Is he/ she recounting events that happened when he/ she was a teacher or when he/ she was a student? Where is the story? Right now, it sounds like someone rambling on about their fond memories--pleasant, but not entirely engaging. I'd probably turn the page, but I'd like to get a hint of the story soon.

[This message has been edited by annepin (edited February 26, 2008).]

[This message has been edited by annepin (edited February 26, 2008).]


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Wildstar
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Good point. I was writing as a memory from a student but after your comment I re-read it and it totally could be from a teacher. I'll have to fix that.

Thanks.

As for the voice of the story I thought I would try something I hadn't before and actually have someone telling a story instead of having the reader experience the story at the same time as it unfolds. It is trickier to make it engaging up front with out starting on something dramatic.

I thought it being a holiday story it might feel nice being a recount of a story as if someone was telling it from the past.

I'll have to work on that.

Thanks.


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Jo1day
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I like the notion of starting from the past, and I think there's potential for some kind of conflict even in your first thirteen, though it could be emphasized some--I detect a little bit of unrest on the part of your character about the play/pageant. You might be able to beef that up a bit.

Other than that, the writing is smooth and clear.


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kingtermite
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Very nice. Smooth writing. I don't quite have a sense of where its going yet, but I'm not losing interest yet either.
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