One of a series of short stories I have written over the years is up here on the site, just wondered what folks thought.
March 18th, 2002, 11:06 AM
I just read your story. I must say that I was quite impressed. You captured my interest early on with Beda willingly going to meet his death for his beliefs. I did not expect there to be this dark side to a story called The Bride Stone.
Further more I found the logic persausive that his brother priests argued about his pride getting in the way of having someone accompany him.
The story has a nice depth for being short and it certainly is original and it whispered to my dark curisosity of ancient strange ways.
I'm afraid I can't be too critical as I was really into the story and where it was going to the point where I may have overlooked any technical stuff like grammer.
A good read.
March 19th, 2002, 02:01 AM
It was a very nice story.
I liked the setting. It wasn't the traditional medieval one, but had a strong flavour of the pre-historic, which mixed well with the dark undertones of the story. The only passage that really jarred me out of that feel was when Beda called Astra 'Madam.' That word seems to me to belong to a completely different age.
Aside from this, I think maybe you need to work a little on the punctuation in some places. The first sentence is always very important and, unfortunately, I stumbled a bit there already.
The length of granite sighed as it rumbled to a stop; it seemed to Beda that the rock was expressing its delight at last being near the end of its passage...
I think I would have written: "The length of granite sighed as it rumbled to a stop; it seemed to Beda that the rock was expressing its delight at, at last, being near the end of its passage..." or "The length of granite sighed as it rumbled to a stop; it seemed to Beda that the rock was expressing its delight at being near the end of its passage at last..."
Also, a lot of your sentences form questions and therefore I believe you should use question marks to end them. For example you wrote:
Beda frowned, did the others doubt even now, was his fellow priests faith so weak that they still did not see the need for the bride.
Where I think I would have written something akin to: "Beda frowned. Did the others doubt even now? Was the faith of his fellow priests so weak that they still did not see the need for the bride?"
Finally, I think you could have improved the prose a bit by using more full stops at places. Some of the sentences are a little long. For example in this paragraph:
Beda raised his face from the chill rock shuddering at the implications of his choice, could this be a test were the Gods even now trying to pry him from his path with the choice of life. But his choice had been made the moment he had spoken as a child nothing could turn him from it.
I imagine I would have written it as: "Beda raised his face from the chill rock, shuddering at the implications of his choice. Could this be a test? Were the Gods even now trying to pry him from his path with the choice of life? But his choice had been made the moment he had spoken as a child. Nothing could turn him from it."
Then again, it might be a question of style. In fact someone once said that my sentences were too short http://www.sffworld.com/ubb/smile.gif. But I still think it flows a bit easier this way. You can take it as a suggestion, nothing more.
Overall, I liked the story. It felt original and had a really engaging atmosphere. You did a good job at capturing the emotions of Beda and Astra and I think the religion was portrayed excellently, without the need for you to resort to blatant info-dumps anywhere.
[This message has been edited by nicba (edited March 19, 2002).]
March 19th, 2002, 02:51 AM
I just wanted to say that I really enjoyed the story. Concise and well written. I do agree with the "Madam" comment though, it sort of popped out of the setting.
March 21st, 2002, 08:54 AM
Thanks for the comments, have played with it a bit, altering things.
It is here along with the second in the series. http://home.arachsys.com/~chris/sue/Cysegr%20two.doc
[This message has been edited by Holbrook (edited March 21, 2002).]