A new Life opinions and thoughts

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zekeprower
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A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by zekeprower » Mon May 01, 2006 6:25 pm

this is just a new thread for my story. it is mostly for some public opinion on my fic. A "New Life on Tisbury Lane" is the revised name and will be updated soon. i do have a question to post for the sake of opinion.

What is the overall position on adding music to a story as long as it is actually enhancing the story? What sould be the limit on amouts or types of music used?

these questions are only to get an overall consensus on how many actually like to have music in a story. personally, i think that it makes the story gelam if the music is used right.
Last edited by zekeprower on Wed May 03, 2006 2:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
He stood tall on top of the mountain of his ancestors and looked down to see his home. He let loose a loud howl. He is now a man, but not just a man. He is now a true Wolf and others are sure to follow him.
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by c_nordlander » Tue May 02, 2006 12:20 am

With "adding music to a story", I assume that you are referring to quoting song lyrics, rather than simply mentioning the music (as in, for example: "Lisa starts playing 'Baker Street' on her saxophone.")

If so, my answer is: unless it's a manageably short, mood-setting quotation at the start of a chapter, please don't. I have read far too many fanfics that have contained long, context-less quotes from song lyrics, and they have never failed to aggravate me. I realise that the authors do it to add mood, but to me, nothing *breaks* the mood as much as seeing paragraph upon paragraph of quoted lyrics, rather than the author actually going through the trouble of writing a moving and interesting scene on his or her own.

That is my answer, and if you find it too blunt, I am sorry. Again, I am not quite sure sure if that is what you meant. You will be getting more opinions, I'm sure.

(Oh, and why not discuss this in the opinions thread for your story?)
I said: Hey, you! Feed the machine!
Bring them all back down to their knees!
There's no time to waste, remind the slaves
They ain't gonna make it out alive today.
I said: Hey, you! Poison the well!
Watch it all burn, take them straight to hell!
He's got the whole world in his hands
It was nice to know ya
We've all been damned!
C'mon!


-- Poor Man's Poison, "Feed the Machine"
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by zekeprower » Tue May 02, 2006 2:16 am

this is a continuation of that thread. i have renamed the story and decided that it would be best to work from a new thread. In the matter of the music, both of you are right. I too share your somewhat dislike of "songfics". for me it would be more like what LisaLover(welcome back) was saying. there would be a place in the story to initiate the music into the story, but it would mostly be music that the reader could play in the background while reading. it is the way i love to write and want others to *hopefully* feel the same mood as i did when writting. what do you think about that kind of music added to a fic?
He stood tall on top of the mountain of his ancestors and looked down to see his home. He let loose a loud howl. He is now a man, but not just a man. He is now a true Wolf and others are sure to follow him.
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by c_nordlander » Tue May 02, 2006 7:36 am

OK, thanks for clearing that up, and I apologise for my little rant.

That kind of music, on the other hand, I have nothing against. I have done it myself a couple of times.
I said: Hey, you! Feed the machine!
Bring them all back down to their knees!
There's no time to waste, remind the slaves
They ain't gonna make it out alive today.
I said: Hey, you! Poison the well!
Watch it all burn, take them straight to hell!
He's got the whole world in his hands
It was nice to know ya
We've all been damned!
C'mon!


-- Poor Man's Poison, "Feed the Machine"
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by zekeprower » Tue May 02, 2006 2:48 pm

well that's one in favor of. i am hoping to get a site up soon that will house my story and music along with that of other's. if anyone is interested in posting anything on my site when it goes up, just tell me. and where did that other reply from LL1 go?
He stood tall on top of the mountain of his ancestors and looked down to see his home. He let loose a loud howl. He is now a man, but not just a man. He is now a true Wolf and others are sure to follow him.
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by c_nordlander » Tue May 02, 2006 4:22 pm

zekeprower wrote: and where did that other reply from LL1 go?
Graham deleted it, since Lisalover1 is supposed to be banned.
I said: Hey, you! Feed the machine!
Bring them all back down to their knees!
There's no time to waste, remind the slaves
They ain't gonna make it out alive today.
I said: Hey, you! Poison the well!
Watch it all burn, take them straight to hell!
He's got the whole world in his hands
It was nice to know ya
We've all been damned!
C'mon!


-- Poor Man's Poison, "Feed the Machine"
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by OARRIAGA2001 » Tue May 02, 2006 7:49 pm

Here is another opinion to that Music-in-the-background idea.  A story is nothing but self-expression.  It does not matter if is comedy, action, mistery or any other gender that exists.  It always reflects the authors feelings, and thats why makes it so unique.  Music placed into the background will (IMHO) affect your already piece of art, mainly because it is not yours, is somebody else's work which inevitably will digress the reader subconcious mind into another aspect of the story.  It will enhance it, yes.  But, will it give the same idea you were trying to express?

I think that when you are writing, it could be a very powerful tool to find motivation.  I have done it, and it has worked nicely.  I use the same when drawing a piece of art, sometimes.

When you enter into a museum or library, you will always hear either nature or some Mozart's (to mention a good one) music playing on the background.  It is motivational music, to learn ore help you learning. 

That's my idea. :-)
Last edited by Anonymous on Wed May 03, 2006 2:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by zekeprower » Tue May 02, 2006 10:45 pm

O. Perez wrote: piece of art, mainly because it is not yours, is somebody else work which inevitably will digress the reader subconcious mind into another aspect of the story.  It will enhance it, yes.  But, will it give the same idea you were trying to express?

I think that when you are writing, it could be a very powerful tool to find motivation.  I have done it, and it has worked nicely.  I use the same when drawing a piece of art, sometimes.

When you enter into a museum or library, you will always hear either nature or some mozart's (to mention a good one) music playing on the background.  It is motivational music, to learn ore help you learning. 

That's my idea. :-)
words could not have been more well spoken by a genius or psychiatrist. will the reader get the same feeling as I do? that is a matter of the mind of the reader. as far giving it the same idea, it should because i only write a chapter around that piece of music. the lyrics corespond to the mood of the moment and dive a little deeper into the situation. the music would not be off track, like putting a love song in a fight scene, but be more like putting Mozart into a museum, as you put it. does that put it into perspective?  :)
He stood tall on top of the mountain of his ancestors and looked down to see his home. He let loose a loud howl. He is now a man, but not just a man. He is now a true Wolf and others are sure to follow him.
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Re: A New Life on Tisbury Lane thoughts and opinions

Post by zekeprower » Wed May 03, 2006 2:41 pm

Here is a seim-updated version of my story. I know that i haven't written too much more. I have been busy moving. within the next week or so(hopefully) much more will come much quicker. there have been a few changes, mostly to make it seem more like a real book. Please R&R. Thanks :)
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He stood tall on top of the mountain of his ancestors and looked down to see his home. He let loose a loud howl. He is now a man, but not just a man. He is now a true Wolf and others are sure to follow him.
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by zekeprower » Sun May 07, 2006 8:11 am

i need the help of as many people as possible. i have an idea for a later chapter of my story. the idea is running two different times that are about twenty minutes apart that converge into one scene. there is music in it, but not paragraphs of lyrics. if i put what i have finished up will everyone who reads it give me some critisisim on how it looks. if you have an idea that will make it better while staying with the feeling of the moment, please feel free. it is the frist time that i have ever tried doing this style of writing so please be kind. the part will be up tommorow. it will be put into the story also. so think of it as a sneak peak into the future of the story.
He stood tall on top of the mountain of his ancestors and looked down to see his home. He let loose a loud howl. He is now a man, but not just a man. He is now a true Wolf and others are sure to follow him.
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by c_nordlander » Sun May 07, 2006 10:38 pm

OK, I've finally got around to reading and commenting on this story. Note: I will give some constructive criticism here. It is intended to help you improve your story, not insult you. Also bear in mind that I would not waste my time review a story that I found irredeemably bad.

The title is pretty good, though I think just "A New Life" would be preferable.

I like the idea of Lisa not being completely free of her condition. It seems realistic and generally non-fairy tale like.
It has been a few years now since Lisa had to have a major brain surgery. Though she came out of it okay, she still occasionally had seizures.
OK, you have a tense shift here. In the first sentence, change "has" to "had". Always try to keep the same tense. The same problem turns up later on ("Lisa is" should be "was"), but I won't point it out every time.

Seventeen years is hardly "a few".

The first paragraph is quite long. Perhaps you should split it up.

I like Bart being in law school and Maggie being a police officer. Fits in nicely with canon.

OK, I don't see why you need to describe what the Simpsons kids are all wearing on the very first page. There is a bit of information overload. You can work their clothes and appearance into the story, once it gets going. (For example: "Lisa hung off her blue half-jacket.")

"biker-style" sounds a lot better than "bikers-style".

In fact, there is a lot of backstory crammed in here, some of it involving things that have happened on the show and that most fans will know about. If you want to pull the reader in, you should rather start with something exciting, for example a conversation or some kind of action, and work the backstory in as you go. A suggestion: start with the other Simpsons turning up at Lisa's house, and then try to transmit the background information from then on.
Lisa has become a teacher and had already gone through the ordeal with Hugh that she was foretold of by the gypsy at the renascence fair that had visited her town when she was only 8.
OK, this is an extremely long sentence. Why not shorten it to: "Lisa had become a teacher and had already gone through the ordeal with Hugh that the gypsy had foretold."? Also, in this context, the spelling should be "renaissance". (Though "renascence" isn't incorrect, it's just rarely used of the time period.)

Also, in a story, you should always write out numbers. So "eight", not "8".
Many things had changed in their world though. Besides the obvious use of robotics and new vehicle and aircraft designs, space travel is a massive industry. Due to a new type of power source and star drive used in all new space craft, most of the galaxy has been explored, though much lies beyond those boundaries.  Some new forms of life had arrived on their planet and everyone was adjusting to the fact that they weren’t alone in the world like they thought they were.
OK... slow down, deep breaths... this story is set seventeen years or so into the future. At a pinch, I could tolerate the "robotics and new vehicle and aircraft designs" bit, since it has some canonical coverage in the robots and hovercars in Simpsons future episodes (though I've always found those bits corny at best), but then you go on to describe some Star Trek or Futurama-like future with (I assume) FTL-travel and aliens.

Is all this necessary? Of course, I don't know yet whether you are going to have aliens and space travel in this story (having Lisa inventing the drive isn't *necessary*, she could easily have gained fame and fortune by some other scientific innovation), but if you're not, I'd urge you to remove this bit and stick with realistically advanced technology. Just because it's set in the future doesn't mean you have to turn it into space opera.
There was a knock at the door of Lisa’s house. She walked over to the door and peered out of the peephole. It was the entire family. She quickly opened the door and greeted her parents and siblings.
OK, this sounds very bare. You need to describe a bit more (as long as you don't put in big blocks of description). Make us feel like we are in that hallway with Lisa and see what she sees. The significant details, and all that.

When you write dialogue, you need to have a linebreak whenever there is a new speaker. Otherwise it will be hard to figure out who is saying what.
“Man Lis, what have they been doing to you at the lab, making you run all over the place all day?” Bart asked looking at her sister’s trim figure and hardened body.
See, this is what I mean with putting information into the story rather than just dumping it at the start.

Should be "rippled", not "ripped".
“It is from lugging my equipment around the lab all day, I am beginning to think bout getting a wagon or something to the effect.” She said smiling.
"she" shouldn't be capitalised, because it's a dialogue tag, not a new sentence. You got it right earlier, but it turns up again later.

The dialogue that follows is pretty good (and you have the proper linebreaks). There are a couple of low-key funny lines, like the bit about the yeast.
regaling the story to Lisa
I like the word "regaling", but here it looks a bit odd. It should be either "telling the story to Lisa" or "regaling Lisa with the story".
Like usual Homer and Maggie were engaged in an eating contest brought on only by looks.
It should be "as usual", and the last bit, while understandable, seems very compact. I'd expand it to: "As usual, Homer and Maggie gave each other surreptitious looks, and were soon engaged in an eating contest."
Lisa just smiled; she even seemed to enjoy the noise.
Very nice. It gives a lot of information while being understated.
you want to come and stay with for a while
Looks like the word "me" has dropped out. (And a comma after "while" could be an improvement.)

Typo: "grabber" should be "grabbed". (It turns up later as well.)

Bonus points for using the verb "seize" (meaning "to have seizures"). I didn't know about that form until I looked it up.
Maggie dropped her radio as she looked down at her hand. During her convulsions Lisa had bit Maggie’s hand very hard.
It's a dramatic event, but I think the "very hard" at the end sort of makes it slower. Perhaps "Lisa had bit down hard on Maggie's hand" would sound better.

Again, you have some very long paragraphs. It would be good if you split them up whenever there's a new major action.
The medics brought both Lisa and Maggie out to the ambulance to be brought to the hospital.
"Brought" twice in one sentence is a bit too much. Same thing with ending the next sentence with the word "hospital".

"Gotten" sounds a bit in correct. Why not "By the time they had got there" or "By the time they had arrived"?
Lisa was stabilized as Maggie watched. She watched as the doctors worked on her totally unaware of the fact that she was bleeding rather profusely.
OK, you need to clear this up: Maggie watched as the doctors worked on *Lisa*. Also, "rather profusely" sounds a bit odd. I'd remove the "rather".
One of the other doctors walked over to her
Other doctors?

To be concluded
Last edited by Anonymous on Tue May 09, 2006 7:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
I said: Hey, you! Feed the machine!
Bring them all back down to their knees!
There's no time to waste, remind the slaves
They ain't gonna make it out alive today.
I said: Hey, you! Poison the well!
Watch it all burn, take them straight to hell!
He's got the whole world in his hands
It was nice to know ya
We've all been damned!
C'mon!


-- Poor Man's Poison, "Feed the Machine"
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by c_nordlander » Sun May 07, 2006 10:40 pm

In fact, the description of the things that happen at the hospital seems rather wooden. There's nothing wrong with the grammar, but the sentences don't really flow. Try reading through it and seeing if there's a smoother way to write it.

"Brave" shouldn't be capitalised.

The bit with the doctor is quite nice. He has a bit of personality already, and I like the bit of mystery when the other doctor doesn't know about him. You manage to drop that hint very subtly.
Maggie said in a very pissed of voice.
OK, firstly it should be "pissed-off", and secondly, this is telling instead of showing. Make her words angry, instead of just describing her voice.
walked straight down to the room where her sister was resting in.
Remove "in".
Maggie looked at her sister with despair and regret that she did not do something for her when she hit her head on the cupboard.
Which cupboard?

"Favorite" doesn't need to be capitalised.

Bonus points for using the word "confidante".

The bit where the family is standing around Lisa's bed is good. Perhaps a bit tear-filled, but that's OK. There are some very nice descriptions, and it creates emotion without forcing it.

The doctor coming into the room breaks the mood a bit, though, because then you say that Maggie can't see him. Since Maggie is the viewpoint character here, that seems a bit odd. (In a movie, it would work quite well.) I would change it to have Maggie just hearing a voice, perhaps even recognising it as that of the doctor, but not seeing anyone else in the room.
Being a high paid government employee kind of gives some good rewards.
This could be sharpened a bit. "Being a high-paid government employee has some good sides to it", perhaps.
“Maggie, what’s wrong?” Lisa asked with concern.
"with concern" could go. The words already show her concern.
Bart and dad had to hold you down, while I …” she said trailing off
I think just "she trailed off" would work here. (And of course, then "grabbing her hand" would qualify that.)
“I had to make sure that you didn’t bite your tongue off. With as much as you were shaking you definitely would have.”
The second sentence sounds odd. Removing the "with" would be a great improvement.
Besides, the doctor said that after the stitches are taken out and a little therapy it will be back in no time.
"it will be back in no time" sounds odd. "it will be back to normal in no time." would be better.

OK, when you say "the doctor", you should probably specify that he was the one who stitched Maggie's hand, because he could be any number of doctors who have appeared so far. Perhaps just have him look at Maggie's hand.

Like Missy, I'm a bit unsure about you using an original character who has your online name. It's a small point (and it's good that it's not your real name), but it will annoy some readers. He seems like rather a nice character, though, and so far he's certainly not acting like a Gary Stu.
“Maggie I am getting hungry.” Lisa interrupted
The dialogue should end with a comma here, not a full stop, because it is followed by a tag. Please remember this: things like "she said" should be preceded by a comma, and not be capitalised.
before letting them get into a major fight.
OK, "major" serves next to no purpose here.

"missing" and "breakfast" shouldn't be capitalised.

"witch" is a female wizard. "which" is "that which".

Zeke's "you must be disposed of" line is a good joke, but "he said menacingly" is a bit unnecessary. I would remove that bit.
with a trite smile.
"Trite" normally means "clichéd" or "banal", which doesn't seem to fit in here. Possibly you need another word.

Zeke's backstory is pretty nice, if a bit of an infodump and not really surprising. You need to put in a bit more description, though, for example when he turns himself into a pigeon. There are some good jokes. (I like the beanbag one at the end of the chapter.)

Again, should be "as usual".

"dirt" shouldn't be capitalised, unless "dirt bike" is actually a trademark (I don't know enough about them). Anyway, you don't capitalise it later.

I don't see why Maggie is so angry with Zeke (except for the beanbag). I guess it shows her short temper, but don't overdo it.
Her face turned to one that showed moderate pain.
That's a wordy way of putting it. Just write "Her expression turned to one of moderate pain." or the like.

Typo: "noting" should be "nothing" here.
To Maggie the silence seemed to last forever. Zeke finally broke the silence.
I'd change to "Zeke finally broke it."

I think the bit about Zeke feeling Maggie's pain and sorrow is a bit melodramatic. It does make sense, but it feels overwritten. At least shorten it. And the bit about her "facing her demons" later is a bit of a cliché. Otherwise, it's not bad. I also like the chapter ending.
Lisa are dimwitted brother is here
I assume that should be "our".

I like the mention of Jessica.

"Lis" should be capitalised.

I like the ending of this bit. It's quite descriptive, the dialogue works, and the last line is sardonically funny.

Well, I find this story quite decent so far. The Simpsons kids are all in character (well, it's pretty hard to know what is "in character" for Maggie, but I can imagine her like this), and Zeke is a likeable enough new character, with his silly sense of humour. In fact, both the comedy and the drama work quite well. The way the characters interact is believable.

I know I've pointed out some problems, but most of them are easily fixable. Watch out for tense changes, don't capitalise dialogue tags, read a lot of books to get more sense of flow and of where descriptions are needed. Stuff like that.

Other than that, my main problem is that I don't really feel anything about the story so far. Apart for Zeke being Lisa's guardian angel, there doesn't seem to be much momentum to the plot. Lisa having the seizure is suspenseful, but once that is over, I don't really know where this is going. I guess I'll have to read more.
I said: Hey, you! Feed the machine!
Bring them all back down to their knees!
There's no time to waste, remind the slaves
They ain't gonna make it out alive today.
I said: Hey, you! Poison the well!
Watch it all burn, take them straight to hell!
He's got the whole world in his hands
It was nice to know ya
We've all been damned!
C'mon!


-- Poor Man's Poison, "Feed the Machine"
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by zekeprower » Mon May 08, 2006 12:52 am

thank you so much. this is what i need. i do realize that there are quite a few gramatical errors. those are soon to be fixed. my "Editor in Chief"  ;D has been busy. i don't consider anything that is said about my work to be insulting. as you said there is a bit of an infodump in the first paragraph, but if you knew me personally, you would understand why i do that. it will be split up a bit.

as far as zeke's character, I know that there are problems and i didn't present him right in the beginning. he is not meant to be a ghost-like figure. he is meant to be a true human, but his spirit is what makes him the guardian angel. He bleeds and has the same urges and feelings as other people, but he can controle it better than some people. i still have to get some of his scenes fixed.

there seem to be a lot more oddities than i thought.  :-\. like i said if you were me or knew me, you might get why i do that. most of it just seems right in my mind.

you said is a scene that is a bit "tear-filled". trust me when the story is done and people hear the music that accompanies the story, i hope that they will break down in tears. i hope to have a new site up soon that will have this story and music on it. i would also like to get stuff from other's as well (Shameless plug)

i saw a lot of what you were talking about as far as the mistakes. i will have them fixed up soon and will probably have some of your suggestions in there too.

Last but not... Uh, never mind, just last. i guess that i will have to change my screen name so that people don't get pissed about my character and me. it is funny though, no one has even tried to guess my real name. So what difference does it make?

thanks again Immaterial. i want you to also look at a new post that of mine that will be up soon. you seem to be one of the very few that check into stories closely. it will be only one chapter and will hopefully sound right.

Becuase of you i feel very Humbled. thank you
He stood tall on top of the mountain of his ancestors and looked down to see his home. He let loose a loud howl. He is now a man, but not just a man. He is now a true Wolf and others are sure to follow him.
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by Casper » Mon May 08, 2006 9:04 pm

but if you knew me personally, you would understand why i do that. it will be split up a bit.
It depends whether your doing this for yourself to read over, or an audience. Presuming since you posted it here, your looking for people to read it. Chris (Immaterial) might not be the greatest writer in the known universe, but if she gives advice to make a story better, its well worth taking up on it.
Anyway, carry on...
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Re: A new Life opinions and thoughts

Post by zekeprower » Mon May 08, 2006 10:45 pm

again the correct words allude me. i have always written for myself, but for the first time i am writting for an audience. i do take everyone's words of advise to heart. what i was saying was that if you knew me or was me you would realize that i have a very messed up view of things and it tends to come out in the way that i write. :-\ lets just leave it at that.  like i said, it looks right in my mind but it is obviously is not grammatically correct.
He stood tall on top of the mountain of his ancestors and looked down to see his home. He let loose a loud howl. He is now a man, but not just a man. He is now a true Wolf and others are sure to follow him.
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