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Death of a Simpson

Posted: Tue Aug 19, 2008 3:25 am
by CalculatedChaos
Hello, everyone! Some of you may recognise me from a couple neighboring sites, LTS and NHC to be specifc. I'll introduce myself properly here soon, but I wanted to get this out of the way.
This is my first attempt at fanfiction.  It is nearly finished after more than a month of effort, and now I have to start taking feedback seriously. So here I am.
The picture is 'Sanctuary' by Marco (Simpreal) of LTS and Simpsons Realities, and inspired the scene in Chapter 2.

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Tue Aug 19, 2008 3:34 am
by CalculatedChaos
Sorry for the double post... I have to type on a PSP and there's not much post length.
Credit: The song sung by Maggie in Chapter 8 is 'Calling All Angels' by Jane Siberry.
I know it from the end of the movie 'Pay It Forward'.
This is a video of the original song.

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Tue Aug 19, 2008 4:50 pm
by Leif
CalculatedChaos wrote: Some of you may recognise me from a couple neighboring sites, LTS and NHC to be specifc.
No. I only know you from MT2.  :P

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Tue Aug 19, 2008 11:25 pm
by CalculatedChaos
I've seen you a couple times at LTS. Or someone with the same handle...
Anyways, yes, its there too.

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Mon Aug 25, 2008 12:38 am
by CalculatedChaos
Here's an update including:
-Chapter 9
-Lots of tiny revisions

Sorry I'm not more active on here (as opposed to other boards), but most of the activity here seems to take place in the chatrooms. My PSP doesn't support 'em...
I'll also mention that the story takes place 7 years in the future.

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Tue Aug 26, 2008 1:31 am
by Reptoid
I like your style. You know how to pull a reader through a story. I didn't spot any technical problems, but then again I don't have a good eye for that kind of thing.

I have one problem with the plot, so here's a spoiler that people should avoid if they'd rather read the whole story instead of an unfinished one.

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Tue Aug 26, 2008 10:44 pm
by CalculatedChaos
Yes... you do have a point. I must have been as caught up in the moment as he was...

Perhaps he will 'find' a flashlight or bat or something when I go back and type up the final version.

Thanks for mentioning that!

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Sun Aug 31, 2008 11:27 pm
by CalculatedChaos
I did revise that section, and the story is now finished.

I'll add it to this post later.

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Sat Sep 20, 2008 9:20 pm
by c_nordlander
Welcome to this board! I'm enjoying your fic, and will post my opinions as I read it. Any perceived harshness is purely in the interest of constructiveness, and feel free to take everything with a pinch of salt.  :)

I like the style here. It's not jaw-droppingly beautiful, but I can tell you know how to write.

Typo: "lingeres" should be "lingers".

I love Sideshow Bob's delusions of Krusty. Nice to see a fic that focuses on the fact that Krusty is (or should be) his main nemesis.
He snarled sarcastically.
I think this is a bit too much telling instead of showing, and also, "snarl" isn't the kind of verb I associate with sarcasm. "Snorted" might be better. Just a suggestion.

The vision of Bart is creepy, but not gratuitously so.
With a flick of the wrist the knife sailed through the air
This is a tiny bit ungrammatical. I'd change to "With a flick of the clown's wrist, the knife" etc.

The ending of the prologue is a little bit melodramatic, but then, that suits Bob.

Bart is very much in character in this fic.
“What do you mean?” Asked Maggie
"asked" shouldn't be capitalised, since it's a dialogue tag. This goes for other dialogue tags, so I won't be pointing them out.
It disturbed Maggie greatly to see Lisa like this.
This feels like telling instead of showing. Better to show by Maggie's thoughts and behaviour how upset she is.
Lisa sat on her bed trying to stem the flood of emotions coursing through her mind. Bart’s words had hit close to home. Too close.
There is a bit of cliché here. Nothing horrible, but you might want to scan it for cliché expressions.
It was overwhelming to her innocent, youthful optimism.
I would cut this sentence. It feels too much like an outsider's observation, rather than something Lisa herself would think.
or pour her soul out onto paper for the entire world to see.
I don't really see how this works, unless it refers to published works of some kind. I'd expect her rather to pour her soul out in diary notes etc. Of course, you might be playing with that expectation, which is kind of fun, but then you might need to make it clearer.

Well, I'll be back to review more when I have time. So far, it's very enjoyable. I like how you've started with a suspenseful scene to catch the reader's attention, then backpedalled to show what led up to it. Everyone is in character, particularly Bart and Lisa. (Bob too, though some of his nuances don't come through so well in his short scene.) And I like how you've given some space to Maggie, who's always fun. Good writing style, and the plot looks interesting.

To be continued.

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Sun Sep 21, 2008 9:37 pm
by CalculatedChaos
Thank you for the indepth review so far!
No, I don't take any of it personally (as you said, grain of salt) and, in fact you raise several good points! Particularly with 'showing, not telling'. I remember that from a creative writing course I took years back, so I ought to know better.
I will definately take your advice into consideration when I get around to doing a final draft so I hope you find time to get through it at some point.
I've got two projects backlogged ATM: 'Bleeding Gums' a backstory for

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Sun Sep 21, 2008 9:45 pm
by CalculatedChaos
you know who! The other is a Ruth Powers/Father Sean (S16 guest star voiced by Liam Neeson)/Caleb (fan-created character, 8 year old son of Ruth and Sean) tenatively titled 'Caleb'. That one is a collaborative effort with Astray of and she will be providing illustrations of the story as I go. The first half of Ch. 1 is availiable on that site, by the way.
Thanks again!

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:31 pm
by c_nordlander
Further opinions from where I left off:
the angry blackish-yellow sky
Great description. In fact, I love the whole scene with Maggie in the treehouse.
and found she could watch no longer.
I think you should add a "that". It's not incorrect at all, I just think that would make it flow better.
The very desk she could now see Lisa hunched over, tears pouring down her face in a macabre reflection of the outside world she so obviously felt cut off from.
I love the start of this sentence, but the last seven words just feel like they introduce a completely new thought and generally make it ungainly. I'd suggest ending after "outside world".
Those words tore into Maggie’s already conflicting emotions.
I think mentioning "conflicting emotions" in a story is never a good idea. Show them, don't tell.

The note being blown away is nice, though I feel you make it a bit too melodramatic. Don't force the emotions; the fact that it happens is sad enough.
Maggie watched it go sadly,
Again, no need to point it out. The reader realises she's sad.
“I’m sorry, Lisa.” She mumbled
The dialogue should end with a comma, and "she" shouldn't be capitalised.

The scene in Lisa's room is... I'm sorry to say it, but I find it a bit too angsty. We've had a lot of Lisa-angst fics over the years, and it's possible I'm oversensitive. Still, you might want to cut down on the melodrama. It's OK if Lisa is sad and crying, but try not to overdramatise it.
Flicking on her small lamp she frantically searched it,
This looks like she searched the *lamp*. Obviously you mean the desk, but you might want to rephrase it.
for some small shred of comfort.
This is a bit of a cliché.
“Why?” She sobbed
Again, "she" shouldn't be capitalised.
the only other soul on the planet she ever connected to
Should be "she had ever connected to".

I like the note sticking to the mirror.
Her senses of reason screamed in denial of what she was looking at!
OK, you shouldn't have exclamation marks in narrative, so cut that. Also, "her senses of reason" seems a bit wordy. Just "her reason" would do.

I like "vote of confidence".

Some sentence fragments here. One now and then isn't too bad, but things like "Lisa felt as though he was still right here. Silently encouraging her to nurture and cherish the gifts that she was blessed with, not to waste her efforts feeling sorry for herself, she realized." shouldn't have the sentence break.
feeling happiness bloom inside her for what seemed the first time in ages.
Again, mentioning a feeling, instead of trying to illustrate it to the reader. Also, the end of the sentence is a bit of a cliché.

Still good, obviously. (My amount of nitpicks might seem to indicate the contrary, but that's just because I want this to get as good as possible - if I thought it was a "meh" fic, I wouldn't bother so much.) I do find the Lisa scene a bit too melodramatic and angsty, though.

To be continued.

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Sat Oct 11, 2008 11:59 pm
by CalculatedChaos
Once I've seen a few examples it'll be alot easier to pick 'em out, and it's all being taken into consideration for that rewrite. (It's looking more and more like I'll just be retyping the thing...)

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Fri Oct 17, 2008 10:32 pm
by c_nordlander
I know you're working on chapter 3 at the moment, so my comments might be obsolete. Just take to heart as much or little as you want.

I love the description of Marge as "the matronly head of the household".

Spelling: "smart-alek" should be "smart-alec" with a C.
Her first thought was of the note folded neatly under her pillow but that was quickly replaced
I think this would read better with a comma after "pillow".

I think "a budding sense of urgency to get ready" is a bit wordy and bureaucratic.

The line about Mr. Burns handing out money might be even better if you just write "her father's boss", but both work fine. I just think it would be slightly funnier without his name.
‘Of course’ Lisa fumed,
Needs a comma after the quote.
A glob of syrup dribbled down his muzzled chin
Another great piece of description.
It was a mighty beast of a thing. Looking more like an overstuffed beanbag than anything else, and it was nearly too heavy for Lisa to lift.
This should be just one sentence, with a comma instead of the full stop. Great description, though.

Nicely suspenseful chapter ending.

Chapter 4:

I assume you're going to fix the cases of capitalisation in dialogue tags when you go back and edit the fic, so I won't point it out any more unless you want me to.
Bart had decided to apologize to Lisa for skipping out on her ride earlier. At the time he thought it best because of their argument the night before, but all awkwardness aside, now he wasn’t so sure.
I think this is a bit of telling instead of showing. Not awful, but I think you could as well cut it. Bart's next line of inner monologue shows that he's feeling apologetic.

There should be a space between "Van" and "Houten".

I like the reference to Milhouse's feelings for Lisa.
Seriously.” Bart said
Should have a comma instead of a full stop. Just pointing it out so you won't accidentally miss it.
Bart had never bothered to learn her name. Apparently the feeling was mutual, but it still irritated him.
Hilarious. I also love "Bort Simpstone" and the pig in the vent.
What the hell is Skinner, doing here?
You don't need that comma.

Very good and funny so far. I'll keep reading as soon as I can.

Re: Death of a Simpson

Posted: Sat Oct 18, 2008 8:43 pm
by CalculatedChaos
Indeed, 3 is getting quite a bit of rework done on it, but the comments are still helpful. I'll be retyping the whole thing so now that I know to watch for lowercase after dialogue tags it shouldn't be a problem. The comma in the last quote about Skinner is a typo...

Anyway, the rewrite won't affect the actual plot, just some descriptions and there will be additional scenes (deleted, if you will) with Bob since I've gotten several comments regarding his lack of presence throughout the story. I'm having fun adding in more Homer in the first few chapters and you can expect at least one more Bob/Krusty scene.

As always, your comments will be taken seriously and they've helped alot so far! Thank you!