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Some readers do get it

Switch Blayde

I (at least once) talked about expecting a reader to have a decent reading comprehension. I know it was during a discussion on "show don't tell." I expect a reader to be able to "get it" without me spelling it out for him (assuming I do my job right).

The first feedback I got today on my new story made my day. The reader got it! I mean, really got it! Short stories typically have a twist. With this story, the twist is very, very subtle. But it's there and a reader clearly understood it.

Hooray for SOL readers!

Crumbly Writer
Updated:

@Switch Blayde


The first feedback I got today on my new story made my day. The reader got it! I mean, really got it! Short stories typically have a twist. With this story, the twist is very, very subtle. But it's there and a reader clearly understood it.

Hooray for SOL readers!


Check your scores in a week, or better yet, after the story finishes posting, and readers other than your regular fans read it. If the meaning isn't clear, it'll show up then (i.e. noncomprehending readers won't register a complaint, they'll just get confused and blame the book).

But, assuming that's not the case: Congratulations on a job well done!

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Dominions Son
Updated:

@Switch Blayde

Not exactly sure what you are referring to as the twist, but I read it and enjoyed it and I don't typically read short stories.

I'm not sure if I missed it, or if I got it and just didn't see it as so much of a twist.

Switch Blayde

@Crumbly Writer

or better yet, after the story finishes posting,


It's finished. It's a short story.

Switch Blayde

@Dominions Son

I'm not sure if I missed it, or if I got it and just didn't see it as so much of a twist.


I don't want to be a spoiler here so I'll stay mum.

Bondi Beach
Updated:

@Switch Blayde


The first feedback I got today on my new story made my day.


Do we have a place (Author Hangout?) where those who wish to can announce a new story? I for one would have liked to see it, since I don't usually go looking beyond the first few "New Stories" pages. EDIT: And evidently missed it anyway.

bb

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Switch Blayde

@Bondi Beach

Do we have a place (Author Hangout?) where those who wish to can announce a new story? I for one would have liked to see it,


Maybe the Story Discussion part of the forum. But although I've been known to promote my own work, I would feel funny putting it there. I thought that was for readers wanting to discuss stories.

bb, the story is "Tina's Babysitting Adventure" at http://storiesonline.net/s/12068/tinas-babysitting-adventure (told you I wasn't shy about self-promotiing).

Bondi Beach

@Dominions Son

I'm not sure if I missed it, or if I got it and just didn't see it as so much of a twist.


Same here. Liked the story, saw what was left unsaid (won't mention it in case I'm anywhere near the mark), but not exactly a twist. So I guess your first reader is more perceptive than at least a couple of us.

bb

sejintenej

@Switch Blayde

But although I've been known to promote my own work, I would feel funny putting it there

OK by me but do use an appropriate index header. As for the "twist" the first related "hook" was near be beginning (screen 3 on my laptop)and there were more but not many unrelated hooks so not too unexpected.
Try Thomas Hardy for subtlety but they are very very long and not on the internet that I am aware

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Switch Blayde

@sejintenej

the first related "hook" was near be beginning (screen 3 on my laptop)


Actually, the first was in the 6th paragraph. :)

Replies:   Bondi Beach
Bondi Beach

@Switch Blayde

Actually, the first was in the 6th paragraph. :)


OK, then I did get it. Saw that the first time through. Still not sure I'd call the ending a "twist," but I guess "twist" is an elastic term, the best kind.

bb

awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

It's obvious when you think about it. The mother's bizarre treatment of an adult daughter is the key.

The mother has a terminal illness and doesn't want anyone to know, but she wants to see grandchildren before she passes. Sammi is pregnant because she's suffering from morning sickness so it's Tina's turn.

AJ

Switch Blayde

@awnlee jawking

It's obvious when you think about it.


LMFAO

Nope, that's a completely different story. But it brings up a point about not telling the reader everything. Each reader can make the story their own.

Dominions Son

@Switch Blayde

But it brings up a point about not telling the reader everything. Each reader can make the story their own.


True to a point. If you don't tell the reader anything, there is no story at all.

Bondi Beach

@awnlee jawking

Sammi is pregnant because she's suffering from morning sickness so it's Tina's turn.


But then you'd have stupid readers (just saying) pointing out (a) it's usually the other way around: she suffers morning sickness because she's pregnant; and (b) why can't she go screw at night since by definition morning sickness eases off during the day.

I agree, there's a story here.

bb

Replies:   Bondi Beach
Bondi Beach

@Bondi Beach

But then you'd have stupid readers (just saying) pointing out (a) it's usually the other way around: she suffers morning sickness because she's pregnant;


But then you'd have even more readers pointing out that that bb guy missed the point of your sentence: that the morning sickness indicates she's pregnant ...

I've had too much coffee this morning.

bb

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Bondi Beach


I've had too much coffee this morning.


While it is possible to overdose on caffeine to the point of heart failure, That takes an awful lot of coffee.

I had a dog die due to caffeine overdose. He got a hold of an old bottle of caffeine tablets that I had forgotten I even had. Estimate he got the equivalent of 10 - 15 cups of coffee, but that's on a 60 pound dog.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caffeine

The LD50 of caffeine in humans is dependent on individual sensitivity, but is estimated to be 150 to 200 milligrams per kilogram of body mass (75-100 cups of coffee for a 70 kilogram adult)


PS, I prefer my caffeine cold and carbonated.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Dominions Son

PS, I prefer my caffeine cold and carbonated.


yeah team - only way to go, so cold it's almost a slushy

Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

Nope, that's a completely different story. But it brings up a point about not telling the reader everything. Each reader can make the story their own.

I'm editing another author's story, and it's emphasizing this point. I keep marking various sentences: "Unnecessary" or "Obvious, unneeded".

That's why it makes sense to include other authors as editors. While most editors know what's the proper use of English, they aren't focus on the best way to communicate ideas, nor are they good at spotting redundancies or pointless rants.

That's not to say author's don't need proofreaders. Rather it's an argument that you need as many people as possible editing your work, both those with the expertise and those with more specific/limited knowledge.

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