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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Open Discussions About Writing » Keep things in perspective

   
Author Topic: Keep things in perspective
scm288
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I was looking at the Hatrack River Forums just a little while ago, and I stumbled across this bit of fiction that helped me realize that no matter how bad I may think my writing is, it will never be this bad.

It's called the Eye of Argon. Probably some (or lots) of you already know about it. Try to make it through even the first chapter without laughing. It can be reached at

http://www.cowlark.com/parodies.html

Remember, keep your inner critic in perspective!


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Susannaj4
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That made my head hurt.
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scm288
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I dare anyone to try to make up a list of all of the things that absolutely kill this story.

(I don't know the answer myself; I don't dare try to find out.)


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Inkwell
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Gaaahhh!

*thunk*


Inkwell
------------------
"The difference between a writer and someone who says they want to write is merely the width of a postage stamp."
-Anonymous

[This message has been edited by Inkwell (edited January 31, 2006).]


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The Fae-Ray
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"I dare anyone to try to make up a list of all of the things that absolutely kill this story."

I don't think they could. They'd die long before it was finished.


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rcorporon
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Was that a real, published book?
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scm288
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Nope. Here's what it says on the host site:

quote:
The original! The greatest! The one and only Eye of Argon, Jim Theis' literary masterpiece! (Sort of.)
This piece of work is, quite possibly, the worst work of fiction to be produced by humankind. It is so bad that people say it won the Worst Story competition at a convention fifteen years running --- and it was only nominated once. There's a party game where people see how long they can read from it without cracking up. (The answer: not long.) Phrases from it have gone into SF legends.

Quite the record holder--the author should apply to Guiness.

[This message has been edited by scm288 (edited January 31, 2006).]


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cvgurau
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Damn. I only made it as far as " 'Damn, you, barbarian,' shrieked the soldier as he observed his comrade in death."

Whoo.


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autumnmuse
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Try reading the MST 3K version. I laughed so hard my guts hurt now. But even I couldn't make it more than a quarter of the way through.

Yeesh.


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Spaceman
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I couldn't get past "daily accomplishments"
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Whitney
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Oh, my gosh!! I started reading this to my husband and it almost immediately penetrated his World of Warcraft haze he's usually in at this time of night. He looked at me and said, "What is that?" LOL
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Survivor
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I feel bad for the guy. I mean, he's not alive anymore, but can you imagine a worse fate?
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Kolona
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Have some fun and play it on the Natural Voice Reader.
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scm288
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I feel even more sorry for Jim Theis after I looked up his name on Wikipedia. Here's the (very short) entry:

quote:
James F. (Jim) Theis (August 9, 1953 – March 26, 2002) was a science fiction fan who published the notoriously bad fantasy novella The Eye of Argon in a fanzine in 1970. While the writing is comically inept, readers should remember that the author was just 16 years old at the time. Whether later examples of his writing were published is not known, or at least not widely known.

The author was once interviewed on Hour 25, a talk show on KPFK, the presenters of which would periodically stage a reading of The Eye of Argon: he was hurt that his story was being mocked and said he would never write anything again.


I hope that never happens to me.


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Jaina
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Oh, no. Oh, dear God, no. That is NOT fair.

Crap. I named the order of preists in my novel the Theis Order. I swear, I'd never heard of this Jim Theis before! Or this story!

I have GOT to change that. *scurries off to think of a new name for the order*


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AstroStewart
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I know what you mean. My MC's name is Grignr too and now I have to go and think up a new name.
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Jeraliey
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You don't have to change it just because you heard the name somewhere. I don't think people will automatically make the association; I had never heard of this thing before this thread.

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cvgurau
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I feel bad for him. I mean, he wrote it at 16, and was mocked for the rest of his life.

At 16, I was writing some serious crap, too.


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Survivor
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I wasn't putting out enough volume to write anything epic, and none of it was Argon bad, but yeah, I just can't help but feel bad for the guy. The worst thing is that, as far as I'm aware, he never got over it. He was never able to take a step back and feel at least a little satisfaction in being famous in the SF-F community, even if it was for writing The Eye of Argon.
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AstroStewart
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I guess it wasn't obvious enough Jerally, but I was joking about having a character in my story named Grignr
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Jaina
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Sadly, I wasn't joking about having named my priests the Theis Order. I guess it depends on how much I care, and at the moment it's not much. I'd like to finish the story first, and then I can worry about changing names.

Thankfully, I don't have a Grignr.


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