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Author Topic: The Corporate States of America (The American Dream)
Harry Palm
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Fiction. Flash - 1000 words. I would like someone to read the whole story, but here's the first 13:

“Here are the keys to you brand new house! Tell the TV audience how you feel.”

Sergeant Steven Colee and his wife Marsha were outside their new home in a state of bliss and shock. Marsha was holding their two year-old son Peter in her arms while reporters were shoving microphones in their faces and the TV cameras were filming everything they did. “We feel very grateful for the people that made this possible,” said Steven looking into one of the cameras. “I just pray that all veterans, like me, that have been treated like **** by the Federal Government can get the same opportunity as us.” Steven opened the door, and then followed his wife and son into the house, leaving the press clamoring for more.

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Well, nothing very intriguing happens in this opening. Two characters who I feel nothing for have won a house. Not very compelling.

At this moment, I would probably stop reading here unless the very next line had them dropping into a wormhole of strange time and misguided adventure.

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1st off. Welcome to Hatrack.

2nd-With flash you have to move quick and set the type of story it is. I assume it would be sci-fi(as we are in a sci-fi fantasy site), but dont see any elements of it yet.

A couple other comments.
1)A little passive feeling to me, words such as was, were, tend to make me feel disconnected. These can be fixed easily if you so choose. Ex. Colee and his wife Marsaha were outside, could become Colee and his wife Marsha stood, or Marsha was holding, into Marsha held.

I feel it can give a more static scene some life, a sense of action.

2)If word count permits, I would suggest trying to to show the state of bliss and shock versus just saying it.

Being only a 1,000 words I would take a quick look if you want, although it would be a couple days before I could return it.

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Everette Grady
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I think it's hard to tell about this. Based on the title, and the modest length, I would read it, with the assumption that there is a point. Based on the sampling, however, I would say that the message is probably too...obtuse.

To wit: "veterans, like me, that have been treated like **** by the Federal Government can get the same opportunity as us." This is very direct. I'm not disparaging whatever commentary/opinions you might be expressing here, just saying that the most effective satire tends to subtle, or at least veiled in allegory. 1984 is a classic example. No "real" entities involved. Consider how many people might be totally put off by a statement like this, at the very beginning. It may be a determining factor in who will read it. I expect you're better off making bold assertions once they have been substantiated by the story in some way, rather than thrown out there immediately. That said, there may be a market for that sort of thing somewhere; I don't know.

What I did find subtle was the title. Corporate States of America, in acronym, is of course, CSA--synonymous with Confederate States of America. This plants an immediate and automatic association (for me) that causes me to presume that you intend to draw an analogy between plantation society and corporate society. That may not have been your intention at all. I don't know from such a short segment.

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Bent Tree
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I think for flash, this was a might slow. I think the first line was great but it needs an attribution.

The paragraph is well written. The conflict was subtle and a bit mundane for speculative introduction. The title should be reconsidered, I think.

I'll give it a read. Send it along

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