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The One
January 21st, 2004, 11:13 AM
I've just started writing stories and I was wondering if somebody could tell me what they think of this:

ANEW

The barbarian ran at him, his scimitar raised over his head, as he let out a savage scream, a challenge mixed with both anger and hatred. The Warrior managed to sidestep him, sweeping up his broadsword as he did so, slicing the barbarian open from groin to sternum. The barbarian stopped. He turned towards the warrior, eyes full of both shock and defiance, before they clouded over and he fell to the floor.
The Warrior stooped over the barbarianís dead body and wiped his sword clear of blood on the clothing. The Warrior knelt on the grass and breathed deeply. He had just managed to defeat another screaming horde of the savages from the West.
How often had he done this, he wondered, wiped out armies single-handedly? He had lost count of the amount of times he had fought them. He was tired, tired of the blood, of the fighting, of the sight of eyes looking at him with utter contempt. He wanted to get away, leave this life and begin anew. Maybe open a tavern or build a farm and raise some livestock, something that would give his life a new meaning.
He let out a sigh, knowing that he would never be able to live out this dream; his life was already dedicated to the struggle. He looked at the battlefield, strewn with the bodies of those slain by his hand. Slowly he rose again to his feet. He thought for a moment, then shook his head and strode away, on to the next battle.


It's not brilliant and not very long, but any criticism would be welcome.

Thanks:)

Ilnaulro
January 21st, 2004, 01:13 PM
Hello The One :)

I will endeavour to give you some feedback if I may.

Firstly, I believe that in this short piece you have shown that you certainly have the potential to write some good stuff. I have looked over scores of samples from aspiring writers and have found that you can tell when someone shows that promise.
It is important to remember that your skills will develop and likely quite rapidly if you post and get feedback and consider carefully what you hear.
If this were the beginning of a long story I would say you have given too much information about this warrior too soon. Naming him just by what he is makes me curious and also highlights the loss of humanity I felt you were trying to convey.
I am guessing that this is a snippet of an action scene and so needs something before and after.

The only thing that bugged me was:
"....The barbarian stopped...etc"

He had just been sliced near in half! It seems ridiculous to suggest he just stopped, imho ;)
I am sure you will agree now you see it.

Good luck with your writing!

The One
January 21st, 2004, 04:18 PM
Thank you very much. I'm glad you liked it. I was a bit nervous about putting it on the message board.

Also, I will take your criticism on board and try to make some changes!

Thanks again!

milamber_reborn
January 21st, 2004, 10:29 PM
A nice intro, but the fight should be fleshed out, especially if this is intended as a long work. Later on if you flesh out his background, pull a few twists and keep the battles varied, it should be a good story.

As an editor, this is how I would rewrite it. Some sentences needed restructuring for better flow and a few word choices were poor. Good luck.



The barbarian ran at him with a savage scream, his scimitar raised over his head, a challenge borne of anger and hatred. The Warrior (warrior Ė unless itís a nickname. Or better yet, give him a proper name) managed to sidestep him, sweeping up his broadsword and slicing the barbarian open from groin to sternum. The barbarian stopped. He turned towards the warrior, eyes full of shock and defiance, before they clouded over and he fell to the floor (ground Ė unless itís indoors).

The Warrior stooped over the barbarianís corpse and wiped his bloody sword on the clothing. The Warrior knelt on the grass and breathed deeply. He had just managed to defeat another screaming horde of the savages from the West.

How often had he done this? he wondered. Wiped out armies single-handedly? He was tired, tired of the blood, of the fighting, of the sight of eyes staring/gazing at him with utter contempt. He wanted to get away, leave this life and begin anew. Maybe open a tavern or build a farm and raise some livestock, something that would give his life new meaning.

He let out a sigh, knowing full well that he would never be able to live out the dream; his life was already dedicated to the struggle. He looked at the battlefield, strewn with the bodies of those slain by his hand. Slowly he rose to his feet. He paused for a moment, then shook his head and strode away, on to the next battle.

Expendable
January 28th, 2004, 10:37 AM
There's a floor here? With grass growing on it? Or is it a battlefield littered with the bodies of the dead and dying? How come we don't hear about the bodies until after the barbarian dies?

What kind of noises does a man cut from groin to sterum makes?

If this guy just killed an entire army, why did the barbarian stay behind instead of doing something smart like running?

Is your warrior hurt at all? Is he even sweating hard?

Why does your warrior fight if he's tired of it all? His self-pity sounds more like bragging.

I think if you're gonna make a story out of this you really need to sit down and think about it. If he can defeat entire armies all alone, there's no challange. If there's no challange, there's no interest.

Its like going to a baseball game where the pitcher does a perfect no-hit game over and over again. You'll be a bit morbid and watch, but it won't be long before you're gonna get bored and walk away.

The One
January 28th, 2004, 03:59 PM
Just looking back at it, I realise it is a rather vague piece. I was trying to put over the feeling of a Demi-God kind of hero, constantly being called up by others to defend them and his weariness about it.

I'm now going to go back and try to make some significant changes.

Thanks

Gallowglass
January 29th, 2004, 05:59 PM
I believe I see what you're aiming for. For something off the cuff its actually very good but really just too small for more than a taste.

You might want to re-read the myths about Hercules - an actual demi-god might help bring your demi-god into focus.