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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Fragments and Feedback for Short Works » Alternate Ending (flash)

   
Author Topic: Alternate Ending (flash)
Crank
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The usual. Are you curious and/or intrigued enough to keep reading? Do you have a flash story of your own and would you be willing to swap crits? Any other thoughts you might like to offer would be cool, too.

---------------------------

Joseph finally understood the school librarian's warning about a sorrowful emptiness stalking those who jump to a book's ending. No one should know what's written on the final page until he actually gets there. Especially when it's his own story.

"Do you want to see another alternate version of your final self? Maybe, this one will be more to your liking."

Another duplicate Joseph Lewms appeared next to the running track. The seventh, so far. Again, dressed in the same cut-off shorts and plain white T-shirt bearing his middle school's name. Again, wearing the same off-brand sneakers with the too-long laces. Except, this version wasn't shivering from the cold winds coming off the lake. This version wasn't weighed down by gelatinous pale skin that looked as if it had never been exposed to sunlight.

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Craley
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Hi Crank,

The last two paragraphs are definitely intriguing enough to keep me reading. I find there is a bit of a disconnect with the first paragraph though, there doesn't seem to be clear links between each paragraph.
I think the idea of something stalking you for skipping to the last page is an interesting idea, but perhaps you could make it more tangible: 'sorrowful emptiness' seems a bit vague for me and stands out from the rest of the writing which is clear, simple and interesting. I think it would work well if you just started straight away with the second paragraph of "Do you want to see..." It contains the information in the first one, takes you straight in. The librarian info/flashback could come in later.
Hope this helps.
PS Whats the word count? With all the various forms of story, it is sometimes hard to know what people mean by FF, SS, etc....under 1000 words?

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Corky
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Crank, I think the first paragraph is a cool way to introduce your story, but it might be too subtle.

Could you say something like, "Seeing how your life is going to end is worse than reading the final page of a novel"? (Though that has got to be a huge understatement, for sure.)

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rcmann
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It motivates me to read further, certainly. You might want to expand the first paragraph slightly, but it could live without it. Since it's flash, each word costs like gold.
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Robert Briggs
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I think the way to resolve the issues with the first paragraph might be as simple as to say "especially when it relates to your own life." because I assume that is what the 7th image is showing alternate endings to how his life might turn out. It kind of sets up for the following information. Without it I am looking for a book that never comes.

It definitely has me wanting more though.

Great job!

Robert

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Crank
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Thanx to Craley, Corky, rcmann, and Robert Briggs for critting my story.

I'm committing myself to having it finished sometime this week, so if anybody would like to take a stab at critting the full version (bordering on 990 words at last count), send me your flash in exchange.

S!

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rcmann
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If you are still interested I have a flash I could send you.
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