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Gagged Man
September 4th, 2002, 12:38 AM
I know a lot of people who frequent this board are probably beavering away at stories to submit for the contest. If you've got the time could you read this intro to a story I'm writing (not for the contest, for my portfolio {gets marked so...}) and suggest some imporvements:

The city’s buildings, white crystalline citadels, shone kaleidoscopically in the morning sun and cool breeze while happy and industrious people wandered to work, each one striding with the purpose of a worker ant. This city was called, with such regularity as to be a cliché, the “beautiful city”. Into this scene stepped Parker, grey coated and wearing a black Stetson, a man with no apparent destination who stuck out like a sore thumb in the busy crowds. Contrary to the opinions of those who passed him, Parker did have a purpose but now was not his time; he preferred the night, his panther like movements accompanied by the moon floating inside the darkness. He was waiting for his hunting time.

With effusive gratitude,
Gagged Man

September 4th, 2002, 04:43 AM
I liked, but I had a few problems. Just my opinions, so no need to change anything unless you agree.

Kaleidoscopically is a long cumbersome word. Maybe something a bit shorter with the same effect.

With such regularity as to be a cliché - don't know if it needs to be said. Maybe: The city was commonly known as the Beautiful City.

Hereford Eye
September 4th, 2002, 09:04 PM
Accept my apologies, please. I coulnd't make myself not try this out.
White crystalline citadels shine kaleidoscopically iunder a morning sun not yet enough awake to turn the cool breeze. Happy, industrious people wander to work, each one looking for all the world like a worker ant in the endless line. Fittingly, in character, unsurprisngly. and a hundred other ant-like adjectives, they call the kaleidoscope “beautiful city”.
Parker steps into this scene wearing grey coat and black Stetson, a man with no apparent destination sticking out like a sore thumb in the purposeful parade around him. Contrary to appearance and the opinions of those who must swerve to avoid him, Parker does have a purpose but now is not his time; he prefers the night. He hunts at night.

Gagged Man
September 4th, 2002, 09:31 PM
Thanks to both of you for your interest and replies. I got a lot of new ideas for the opening now (probably a bit too long winded before) and just waiting to try them out.

Thanks, and watch out for the world behind you,
Gagged Man

September 5th, 2002, 09:43 AM
Could be effective with a rewrite. How about something like this?

The bright morning sun reflected brightly in the crystalline structures of the city's tall, graceful buildings. People wandered slowly along the clean, carefully tended streets and took the opportunity to enjoy the cool breeze as they made their way to work. The rustle of leaves and the gentle babble of the public ways only added to their feelings of serenity.

The light hurt Parker's eyes, and he was too agitated to enjoy the breeze. Sounds seemed harsh and shrill to his ears. He tugged his Stetson down in a futile attempt to shade his eyes from the light, tucked his hands into his gray trenchcoat and pushed his way through the crowd. People instinctually parted to let him through. Those that glanced his way were careful not to meet his gaze. He stalked down the street like a storm cloud in an otherwise clear, blue sky.

Parker was a night person. He enjoyed the dark and the shadows. He liked to go about his business unobserved, and to dart gracefully from shadow to shadow, without a sound and without being seen.

Despite this, circumstances dictated that he suffer the light that day. Ill at ease and impatient, he waiting for the hunt to begin.

I know that this is quite a radical rewrite. I've tried to show rather than tell the same snippet of story. Do you see how it has added to the characterization of both Parker and the city? Instead of telling the reader that the city is beautiful, I have tried to convey that beauty. I have also tried to show Parker's agitation, and more smoothly blend his initial description into the narrative.

I hope this is helpful to you!