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Thread: Death Afterlife: Chapter 3

  1. #1
    Ellxeeva's Minion SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD's Avatar
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    Default Death Afterlife: Chapter 3

    You get to learn a bit more about Sain and Mina's past in this chapter. Not much to say here except that it seems awkward that Sain acts like a punk and yet he's in honors classes. That will all be explained later.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Chapter 3

    The next day I was sitting alone at lunch like always. I was a bit infuriated when I was asked to go down to the office for unruly behavior. They said something about skipping class and how it affects grades and how there are rules and blah blah blah. In the end they were all talk and nothing else. I’ve done it before in the future and they know it. No matter what I do I still manage to pass the class with good grades. The only reason why they don’t suspend me is because I get good grades which gives a good name to the school. They’re just a bunch of fools. I saw Mina having a hard time finding a seat as she frantically looked about the lunch room. Everywhere she asked a seat was either already used or being saved for someone. Why didn’t she just take one without asking instead of making it so much harder?

    She must have gotten a glimpse of my near empty table because she started walking my way. I could tell she was reluctant to come sit next to me, but its not like I cared. Once again I chuckled at her when she nearly stumbled and fell; boy was she clumsy.

    “Umm, excuse me but is this seat taken?”, she said

    “No”, I replied

    “Mind if I sit here?”

    “Don’t really care.”

    We ate our food silently and I could tell she was watching me. Whenever I looked in her direction she would look down at the table, as if my gaze would hurt her or something. She began to speak again.

    “So how long have you lived around here?”

    “Since freshman year.”

    “Really, umm… mind if I ask why?”

    “None of your business.”

    “Sorry...”, she backed away in her talking. Then she began again. “Well, I moved here from Germany. I’ve actually been to many places. I used to live with my parents here in the US. I moved to England with my father when I was 8, and then my father left me with my aunt who lived in Spain. I actually lived there for a short time but I learned to love Madrid. After a while my aunt couldn’t take care of me so she left me with some relatives in France when I was 12, but I didn’t stay there long. After a year they passed me over to some people they knew because they said I stole some money from them and didn’t want me in their house anymore. So I lived with two people in Germany. I took my freshman and the first month of sophomore year there and finally got accepted as a transfer student and that’s how I got here. Though I had to work hard to get the grades and get accepted to the program. Its kind of funny actually, I don't feel like I did much, but I don't mind since it all feels like a dream come true. And I've been to many different countries, which not many people get to do in their lifetime. I guess I'm just lucky.”

    I made it seem like I wasn’t listening but it was kind of interesting. At least this was better than staring into space or looking around at others.

    “I’m sorry, you probably didn’t want to hear that”, she said with a disappointed tone in her voice. “I guess I am bothering you, sorry I’ll leave.”, she said and was getting up but I muttered a response.

    “You’re not bothering me, and I heard everything. What happened to your parents though?”

    “Well um…”,she said with a sad expression on her face. “My father said that mother passed away while giving birth to me. As for my father, my aunt said he passed away.”

    “I’m sorry to hear that.” I replied.

    “Don’t worry about it. But you know, that is a reason why I want to become a detective. I was just told he passed away, but deep down I know he is out there somewhere. If I become a detective I might be able to track him down and meet him.” She had a strong look in her eyes, almost as if she was grasping something which she didn't want to let go. I could see it; she was working as hard as she could to grasp that small hope she had of finding her father. What an idiot.

    “But didn’t he just leave you there? Wouldn’t you get angry at him or something?”

    “Well some people may think that, but maybe he had his reasons. Besides, he is the only family I have left; you can’t hate your family no matter what", she said with strength in her voice.

    “Maybe…”, I said, still unconvinced.

    “Mind if I ask you something?”, she asked.

    “Depends”

    “Well, why don’t you have any friends? Is it because you don’t know how to make friends or because you don’t want to?”

    “I don’t want to.”

    “Oh…”, she said, expecting more from my answer.

    I wondered if I should tell her or not, and decided that it would be no harm. After all, she opened up to me, so she probably won’t mind if I told her something personal.

    “It started in middle school”, I started and quickly I had her attention. “My mother passed away in a car accident and I looked for many ways to forget about it. When I went to middle school I met a bunch of people who I befriended and we started a small gang. At first I was just a follower but I craved more power and eventually made it to the top and became leader. I dethroned a bunch of guys and made myself a couple of enemies. But none of that mattered since I had the power to do almost anything with my group. Slowly but surely we began invading enemy turfs and some of the rival gang members even became my followers. Of course I made sure that my best friends were close to the top with me. They were the ones I fully trusted and I confided in them to cover my back for anything. We were even able to take down high school gangs and we became the top dogs of the area in no time; it felt incredible. But once that was accomplished I started changing. I no longer cared about fighting or territory, I just wanted to spend my time with my friends who were always there for my, and my followers who believed in me. Power had lost all its meaning, especially when I realized that I couldn't obtain anymore. Fighting was fun for a while, but after fighting for so long, it grew tiresome and I no longer wished to fight. Eventually things calmed down since there were no more challengers nor gangs, so I was able to live my dream of being with my friends.However that dream had to end sooner or later.”

    I looked over at her and I could tell she was into it. She even stopped eating and just stared at me vividly which made me blush. I was so embarrassed that I even sounded flustered.

    “Um.. then um…”, was all that I could say, struggling to keep my composure but to no avail.

    “Yeah, continue.”, said Mina, fully embraced in what I was telling her.

    “It was our last year of middle school and we had spend that whole entire year without fighting. For me it was like a golden age where we could be a gang without having to worry about anything; we could finally be ourselves. But some of our gang members were starting to get worried. Some rival gangs started to regroup and others were being started. There were rumors that they would all congregate and take us down, yet I dismissed them as rumors. A week later we got a challenge from a rival gang. To me it seemed like the golden age had ended because it usually followed that the end of one fight triggered the start of another. We headed down to the abandoned warehouse where the fight was scheduled to take place. I found it strange that only ten of my men came with me; usually a lot of them would come in case a fight broke out of control. I started getting warmed up so I could take down the rival gang’s leader when suddenly I felt a sharp pain in my back. I turned around and was shock to see that my best friend had literally stabbed me in the back.

    ‘You are getting too soft for us’, he said. ‘We knew you no longer had it in you, so we decided to replace you with someone who does want to take us to the top’

    ‘Why are you doing this, I trusted you. We have been close friends ever since we started this gang, so why do you turn your back on me.’

    ‘Fool don’t you see’, said another one of my friends. ‘Whatever we did we always did for the good of the gang, not for you.’

    They all gathered around my crumpled heap and began kicking me until I passed out. When I awoke I was at the hospital barely alive. I had lost a lot of blood and I would have died had it not been for a policeman who happened to be on patrol around there. My dad stood over my side grasping my hand as hard as he could; he didn’t want to lose me since he had already lost mother. It took me about two months to fully recover, but I managed to do it. However it was too late to attend graduation. I managed to pass the grade but wasn’t able to get top of my class just like I had promised father I would do. As soon as I passed high school, dad quit his job and moved here because he wanted me to start a new life.

    I learned not to trust anyone from then on. Friends are just there when they need you, but once you are useless they just toss you aside as if you’re nothing. I’d rather tough it out alone.”

    I could see Mina was on the verge of crying so I quickly changed the subject.

    “Hey um… I’m not very good at this but… I’m sorry for yelling the other day. I didn’t mean to embarrass you like that.”

    “Don’t worry about it”, she said rubbing her eyes to clean up any tears. “If I would have known I would understand. “

    “Yeah um, listen. I’ve never told anyone this story so I trust you not to tell anyone. People here don’t really like me, so just imagine who they would be if they found out I was in a gang.”

    “Don’t worry,” she said with a smile across her face. “Your secret is safe with me.”

    She held out her hand in front just like yesterday, except I could tell she wasn’t forcing herself.

    “Hi my name is Mina Daminski, nice to meet you.”

    I held out my hand and shook hers. “My name is Sainto Daye, nice to meet you too.”

    Then we both burst into laughter.
    Last edited by SigmaSD; 08-17-2010 at 04:20 AM.
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  2. #2
    Ninja Jesus Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess's Avatar
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    Default Re: Original Fiction: Death Afterlife: Chapter 3

    Ok, this is my fore-warning. I give constructive criticism, meaning that I'm going to tell you exactly what I think. If I don't like something I'll say it, but I'm also going to tell you what I like and, of course, if I give you a negative on something, I'm sure to follow up with suggestions, advice or something else along those lines to help you get better. I don't expect you to lash out at me over a review, but I just want you to know that my intentions are not be mean, but help you out, ok? Also, this is going to be a bit of read. heh... I'm overly descriptive, it seems.

    Now, that being said, I really read this story because I saw that you'd posted a few chapters and haven't really gotten any feedback, yet and I know that can hurt a writer's confidence and drive. So, I'm going to make a promise, now, to read and review as best I can all the chapters you post up, from here on out, for this story. That way you at least have some one egging you on. I, for one, get extremely discouraged if no one seems to be reading my stuff. This first review is focused on this chapter, but I will also mention stuff from previous chapters, too.

    So far, I like the general direction of your story, and you're doing your work pretty well, but there are definitely some things that you can improve upon. For one, there were some spelling errors here and there and you misused a few words. In the second chapter, I seem to recall that you used the word "expression" where it looked like you might have meant "impression." Impression would certainly have made more sense in the context. Other minor grammar errors I caught were probably mostly just typos that could be fixed by a simple reread of the chapter before you post it up.

    By reread, I mean you need to actually read it. I know I have a tendancy to want to just skim over something I've written becuase... well I just put forth hours and hours to write it and I don't really wanna read it, AGAIN! I also have this issue with reading my own writing, as it upsets and unnerves me no matter how well I've written it, but that's beside the point. One of the biggest pieces of advice that I've been given by teachers and other writers is to read the work out loud to yourself because it forces you to look at every word. Even if you read it correctly when it's written incorrectly, you'll probably still see "Oh, I didn't actually write that." You'll want to find a private place to do this because it can be embarrassing and attract a lot of unwanted attention if you try to do this in public. lol. Don't want that.

    Now, moving along to what I feel might be some bigger issues. I, personally, like a lot of juicy details because I really want an intimate knowledge of the inner workings of the characters I'm following. One example where I was a little disappointed, was during the portion where the little boy found out his mother was dead. I liked that he didn't believe it, at first, and tried to make it into a joke, but I felt like there were some things there that you could have milked for so much more emotion. It's never too early to try and make your readers cry, I think, and while the scene was sad, it didn't inspire much emotion, in me.

    What can you do to change that?

    I think you can dwell on things a bit. Certainly in that state of mind people tend to dwell on small details. Memories that make them laugh or something that irritated them about the person they lost. Sometimes people feel angry. A lot of psychologists believe that sadness is just anger in a different form, and, assuming this is true, you could make the scene more meaningful by giving your character something to be truly angry about, before his anger turns to God and he looses his faith. Dwell on smells, feelings (as in physical, as well as emotional), maybe the sound of his dad crying or the taste or feeling in his mouth when the reality of it all starts to hit him. People sometimes talk about their mouths feeling dry or full of cotton, their throats tightening up or stuff like that, not JUST that he was having difficulty talking. In truly emotional moments, explore as much of all five senses as you possibly can.

    I will say, though, that you are more endearing with your characters than most, which I liked. I felt that I could pretty well understand where the kid was coming from and there were times that his personality was really coming through in the narration, unnecessary likes and all. Although telling a story in first person makes this a bit easier, it was great. Do much more of that. Write so that you are absolutely this character. You've been doing pretty well, but you've been only doing it enough so that it doesn't feel like you're breaking any huge grammar rules. I feel like you're walking on grammatical egg shells when you should just stomp on through to the other side of the room. I mean, grammar is important because it makes it possible for the reader to understand. However, this weariness of trying to be all correct makes you shy away a bit from just diving head first into absolutely being this character. Mark Twain did a lot of strange stuff with his writing in stories like Huckleberry Finn, but even when it broke various spelling and grammar rules, it all contributed to the reader's further understanding of what the character was really like and how they thought and how they spoke so that the reader could hear everything the exact way he was hearing it all.

    With that though, I need to point out that there were a few times where the reader may have had trouble relating to your characters. There was a tendency in this chapter to be a little jerky with your writing. Like, you go from one thing to another in a kind of hurried manner. Perhaps your were having trouble with that part and decided the best way to get through it was to just plow ahead; just write. While this is certainly something that helps, you really need to follow it up with some serious clean-up and tuning. Parts of this chapter (for instance when Mina just jumps head-long into her whole life story) seemed to be missing a bit of tuning or some kind of build-up or explanation. Mina's character up to this point, doesn't seem to fit the type to just explode so much private information. Maybe I'm wrong and you intend for her to be that kind of character. It just took her meeting Sain to bring that side out, but it still felt hurried and out of place. Some better detail-work here would have probably cleared that up, completely.

    Also, you tended to have long walls of dialog that would have fit better if you added some emphasis by use of bold or italics. There were lines, especially when Sain was narrating his own story that I read several different times, giving different words different inflections, just trying to imagine how you might have wanted him to sound. It would improve the quality of the read for the reader if you gave them some details to work from to imagine how he's telling the story. Give some actions, like maybe he makes some gestures to punctuate different words and events, or maybe he's sad at one point, then seems thoughtful in another. It's difficult to tell how all of that might be happening inside your head from JUST dialog.

    Okay, so I said a lot, but, in short, I think the main issues I have are proofreading and detail-work. Get more intimate and commit to these characters furiously. Plant yourself firmly in these roles and don't budge for anything unless it fits the character. If it still fits the character but seems a little strange, give it a little more flesh (perhaps fluff) to make it believable.

    I know that was a lot, but I hope you read it and take some of it to help you improve. Please continue writing. I would like to see where you take this story.

    love
    dani
    dude
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  3. #3
    Ellxeeva's Minion SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Original Fiction: Death Afterlife: Chapter 3

    Wow, thanks for the feedback its amazing.

    I have to agree with what you said. These are the first couple of chapters, so I kind of rushed through them. I didn't really add a lot of info to the back-story, which I should. I hope that by doing that I can develop the characters even better. And I should re-read what I wrote, I went back to some of the chapters and there were a couple of spelling errors that were pretty obvious. On top of that, I missed a number so I had to redo the chapter numbers all over again; and it was such a hassle considering I have almost a hundred pages of this. (Its single spaced and I have like 30 chapters so it took me nearly 10 minutes just to do the numbering )

    I was really having trouble with that first chapter though. I wanted to start off with something that happened during Sainto's childhood, but every time I re-read it I couldn't come up with what to write. I get the whole "put more emotions into key moments", but I'm having trouble with that. I'll try exploring more of the five senses (which was extremely useful advice), but I still feel like I'm missing something.

    And could you please explain the whole "using bold or italics" part? I'm having trouble understanding that. Perhaps you can give me an example of what you mean, if its not too much trouble.

    Btw, thank you so so so so so much for your feedback. I really do appreciate it a lot, and its the reason why I will continue posting these up. I kind of knew that people wouldn't respond to the chapters, but I still felt like uploading them just so people could read them. But the fact that you actually replied makes me happy, so I'll try to upload more frequently.

    Can I ask a quick question? What do I do so when I copy and paste it onto here it doesn't get all weird. I'm having trouble with the font size. When I post it, its always too small, and even when I try resizing it, it still doesn't work.
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  4. #4
    Ninja Jesus Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess's Avatar
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    Default Re: Original Fiction: Death Afterlife: Chapter 3

    I know the first few boring chapters are some of the hardest to get through, but that just means that they need even more attention than the others cause the tendency is to just rush through them and leave them with a low quality of writing that doesn't measure up to what you're capable of, as a writer. If you're having problems with the story, I think what you have, now, is fine. You just need to build off of it. Just adding more small details can make it much more rich. In the first chapter, you can build suspense for the climax that the reader knows is coming. Maybe actually go through some of the dialog of the play he's in, and drag it out to create tension. While he's backstage, waiting to go on, wondering if his mom will be in the crowd, talk about how the lights seep through the cracks in the curtains, the color of the curtains, how his hands, feet, and legs feel as he's getting ready to go on. Have him agonize over his frustration and his need to see his mother in the crowd, watching his big moment. As I said, dwell on the little things because he really would be looking at all the little fine details of everything around him, trying to distract himself from his nerves and frustration.

    Hmm... I think the bold/italics thing is best explained with a very simple and over-used example. One little three word phrased: "I love you." With different inflections, it has some completely different meanings and you can express these different inflections with bold and/or italics on the word(s) you want the reader to pay special attention to. For instance, the italics in the following "I love you"s indicate which part of the sentence receives the inflection:

    I love you.
    Meaning, I am the only person that loves you.

    I love you.
    Meaning, I really love you.

    I love you.
    Meaning, I love only you.

    See how the different meanings come across based on which word has the emphasis? Now, this is just an example and you won't use italics in every single sentence (as with all good things, use in moderation and only when it fits and contributes). However, it can help get important meanings across to the reader, without having to explain the meaning, out right.

    Oh, and if you're copying and pasting stuff from elsewhere, highlight everything after you paste it and hit the button on the top far left of the text editor. It has two A's with a red X over it and that should remove all formatting and make it appear, normally. A warning, though, if you use this - it removes ALL formatting, so you'd have to go through, manually, and re-add things like bold, resize, font colors, etc. that you did, intentionally.

    Hope that helps.

    love
    dani
    dude
    Last edited by Yugure's Goddess; 08-14-2010 at 02:29 AM.
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  5. #5
    Ellxeeva's Minion SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD has a reputation beyond repute SigmaSD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Original Fiction: Death Afterlife: Chapter 3

    Thanks a lot for the second time. I'll go over the first couple of chapters then and re-upload them. Hopefully I could upload them better this time.

    The italic example was easy to understand, I think that will come in handy quite often. As for the bold, I'll probably use it though not so much. My characters seldom scream a lot, and that's the only use I see for the bold for now.

    And thank you so much for that uploading tip as well. Now I won't have to frustrate myself with trying to format it.

    I have one last question though. When trying to slip in a flashback, how do you do it without messing up the current scenario or how do you do it so that its not so confusing?
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  6. #6
    Ninja Jesus Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess has a reputation beyond repute Yugure's Goddess's Avatar
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    Default Re: Original Fiction: Death Afterlife: Chapter 3

    Now that's a bit of a tough one and kind of depends on what's being played out in the flashback and how you want it to feel for the reader. Some people just skip down and separate it with something like some dashes (------------) or other divider (*****, ~~~~, /\/\/\/\/\/\, whatever, etc.). Other than that, you can just have it flow normally, just keeping it within quotes, although try to keep the character's style of telling consistent. It seemed like he went from an overview kind of story-telling to being more detailed, which made it feel a little choppy. In that instance, I think it might have made sense to separate it out when he switched over. Although, using separators to point out flashbacks makes the reader expect more detail, so you're going to want to make it more in-depth than you might normally if some one was just recalling and recounting an event.

    If you don't mind, I'd like to add one more thing that was a little irritating. Not separating paragraphs. It makes it easier to read if you indent new paragraphs or if you just leave another blank line between paragraphs. If you don't then it just looks like one huge paragraph, which can make a lot of people turn right around and not even bother to read. =/

    Hope that helps.

    love
    dani
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    Last edited by Yugure's Goddess; 08-14-2010 at 02:54 AM.
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    By SigmaSD in forum Fan Fiction / Prose
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    Last Post: 08-23-2010, 03:31 AM
  3. Death Afterlife: Chapter 11
    By SigmaSD in forum Fan Fiction / Prose
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    Last Post: 08-23-2010, 03:17 AM
  4. Death Afterlife: Chapter 6
    By SigmaSD in forum Fan Fiction / Prose
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 08-22-2010, 11:26 PM
  5. Death Afterlife: Chapter 10
    By SigmaSD in forum Fan Fiction / Prose
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 08-22-2010, 01:38 AM

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