pyrostinger: They say the eye is the window to the soul (Default)
I know. A lot of my recent Random Story Escapades/Encounters have been complaining about a story being porn. I've done this a whole hell of a lot. And it probably seems extremely contradictory, since I know that the story had adult content going into it. So why, oh why, am I complaining about a story that is unabashedly itself? I mean, as a writer, I write porn. So what is my problem, seemingly, with other people's porn?

I think at it's surface, dismissing a story as porn is just that, a dismissal. It's simply something where one or two (or more) characters get together and bump uglies so that the readers experience happiness in the crotch region. There is nothing important or monumental going on here, just the pizza man ringing the doorbell to a house where a lonely house wife just so happens to not have enough cash to pay for the pizza, opening the door to alternate methods of payment. But the thing that gets me, that sorta makes me stop reading for a moment as soon as I detect the story going into blatant porn territory is that porn's purpose is to get the reader off and nothing else. Everything else about the story (including in some cases grammar and spelling) is sacrificed on the altar of porn. Why did retired wrestler dude suddenly offer to fuck the mechanic? Because of porn. Why did the professional athlete accept the offer to blow some anonymous guy in a sauna? Because porn. Why is a boarding school student who is an outcast because of reasons getting dicked by another student under the guise of being tutored? Porn.

Now I've said this several times that this is probably too much to ask that writers try to trandscend the porn label. And really, some people just wanna write and read porn, and not inquire as to how a retired wrestler can fuck a dude against a truck so hard that the axel breaks without putting people into the hospital, or why a pro athlete may or may not be risking scandal for anonymous sex in a sauna, or how in the fuck mothering hell an entire faculty can sentence students to be subject to their sexual depravity under the guise of detention and the school board and parents are totally cool with it. But I've been ruined. I read stuff and questions sprout up in my head, and if the questions are not answered or even addressed than I sentence the story to just being porn. I consider this a failing because I know I can't be the only person that has thought of these questions, even though not a single character had any fucks left to give so why should I?

I would be a liar if I said that I had never, ever written anything like this.  Because we've all been there.  Anybody who puts pen to paper for the first time is going to have some fits and starts and it isn't going to mesh entirely well.  For me, see the first few chapters of Roommates, which you can go find because I will not link you.  But the reason that this bothers me now is because I think too much, and I would ask that maybe, just maybe, there be at least a little bit more depth to these seemingly important questions. I want to read better things, this is why I'm shouting from my dark corner of the Internet. Ultimately, I don't think that's too much to ask.   
pyrostinger: They say the eye is the window to the soul (Default)
We all know that school can be a harsh place, especially since all the students link themselves together and form little cliques and what not.  But the thing that really, really bugged me about this story is how apparently the main character, a rabbit, is so utterly and deliberately anathema. It's driven home with paragraphs of whispered innuendo and slander, and everybody has some reason to hate or otherwise heap disdain upon her.  She's a slut, she's poor, and even the poor kids think she's mockable because she isn't earning money by catering to the rich kids.  Now, OBVIOUSLY the idea is to set her up as some kind of outsider/loner type, but point is driven into the ground and then all the way to China.  Everybody hates her?  Everybody finds some reason to mock this character?  Not a single person is even on the side of indifference? 

Well, there's the other main character: some creepyish exotic(?) cat that likes to hang out in abandoned chapels and trade intelligence on how to survive in the school for sexual favors.  And honestly, I think this dude is doing a crappy job and this shunned student should get her proverbial money back.  Maybe it's me, but I think part of surviving in school would definitely mean not having practically the entire student body mock you for some reason, not just doing good in class.  Though APPARENTLY there's some fishy stuff going on behind the scenes, involving detention and certain teachers that the school and possibly parents are complicit in, so I'm left to wonder what kind of fetish-laden faculty this is.  Then again, this is PORN, so...

There is another thing that this story does that kinda gets on my nerves.  It goes between the two perspectives of loner bunny and creeper cat, yet makes a hard break when switching between the two.  Often, but not always, this makes for a story that ends up repeating itself, which avid readers of this blog know is one of my pet peeves.  Personally, I think the story would have worked much better had there not been such hard breaks and instead it worked from either a third person omniscient or limited to loner bunny, who seems to have the more pertinent storyline. 

As some final thoughts, I will award points to the writer for highlighting the animal aspects of the characters so they just aren't humans with fur coats.  Also, creeper cat: you're kinda doing sodomy wrong.  The writer shouldn't reward you for this. 
pyrostinger: They say the eye is the window to the soul (Default)
I'll disclose right now that I haven't read any of Twilight nor any of 50 Shades of Gray.  I may at some point if only to write a review of it.  However, because of those books popularity I've heard... things.  The plot has been somewhat spoiled for me by other people both promoting and railing against the books.  And while I dislike reading stories that are (allegedly) bad, there is one thing that Twilight and it's fan-fiction spin off are doing that is very, very good. 

It's getting people to read.  Now, it's possible that the type of person that loves Twilight/50 Shades is not going to be a reader except for the rare case of their friends recommending such to them.  But they're still reading.  This is still a good thing.  As a writer, I want people to read and read more because, selfishly, there's a chance that they might stumble upon something that I've written to read and enjoy that.  I will fully admit that I want people to read my stuff, but failing that I want people to read period. 

Books, even bad ones, are a joy and an escape.  Not enough people take part in this, being distracted by TV and other forms of entertainment that are a bit more accessible.  Because even though reading is great, it can be a bit intimidating for those who haven't done it before or don't do it often.  A TV show, outside of maybe boxed DVD sets, aren't really physical.  Books are.  You have to carry them around.  This might dissuade people.  So even though 50 Shades is apparently occupying four New York Times bestseller slots (the three books and the boxed set), and may just be a terrible story that is essentially a thin excuse for bondage porn, it's still good that it exists.

Still not looking forward to reading it, though.  If I do at all.
pyrostinger: They say the eye is the window to the soul (Default)
Few things
  • Still writing!  I have a couple projects that I'm working on actively, one that's just on the periphery.  So far, things are looking good on everything that I am working on, and I just need to get back into the swing of things.  The first is 519 words on a story that was essentially a challenge issued here by Metassus.  I should work more on that, but I confess that my muse found another subject to write on, and I currently have 2237 words on that one.  I suppose neither is really pressing, but the former is supposed to be submission number 100... so I should do that one first, no?  The third story I'm keeping secret for right now.  But just know that as of right now, 777 words are committed to it.  
  • So, you may remember this RSE.  Well, apparently on another story entirely, somebody asked the burning question that I had: Why do you keep repeating yourself?  His answer?  He's trying to show the story from both character's perspectives.  To him, this apparently necessitates repeating a character's actions so that the other character can reply to them.  Even though this was repeated only a paragraph earlier, and only if somebody is suffering from some kind of extreme ADD would they forget what the first character did, since one would have read it a few minutes earlier.  I... don't... understand.
  • I also have a few reviews that I need to get to.  No, I haven't forgotten about you, Poetigress.  
pyrostinger: They say the eye is the window to the soul (Default)
No, the title does not contain a typo. 

Again, there's a bunch of stories out there.  And every so often I come across it and I spot such glaring errors that, with my newfound blog post, I must tear them apart for entertainment's sake.  Because damn, this stuff is bad.

Now, this particular story ran into my inbox on FA unsolicited.  So I didn't randomly stumble upon it, it was pushed upon me, in a way.  I read it anyway, but I didn't get far before what I read was utter dross.  The story opens with an apparent outbreak of people being turned into werehorses, and this outbreak it so severe it has been reported on the evening news.  AND YET, in the very next sentence, there's the general population dismissing it as a 'weird dream.'  This kinda took me right out of the story, though on sober reflection I can kinda see how it wouldn't be taken seriously.  But honestly, if this stuff happens on a MONTHLY BASIS, with the newsmedia covering it every month, presumably, wouldn't it get, like... some credence?  Maybe?  I mean... this kinda thing would be right into the wheel house of conspiracy theorists.  Not only that, but if they're presumably finding fresh material including equine orgies...  c'mon.

But whatever.  So then, the main character [Redacted], is hanging out in a park one day, waiting for somebody.  Another crazed dude runs into him, screaming about how he should get out of the way.  [Redacted] asks why, and the other dude says, in essence, "So I can get away from everybody else" and then starts changing.  Now... couple nitpicks: 1. "Whilst" is an odd word to use, and makes what is ostensibly a contemporary story sound Olde Tyme, and 2. "When suddenly..." is a terrible way to transition to another paragraph.  Seriously. 

Now, the story is porn.  So obviously, the first thing to start transforming is the other dude's dick.  Now, I don't know the mechanics of transformation, but I suppose you gotta start somewhere... I dunno.  And this [Redacted] character?  He's a wuss.  Seriously, when somebody starts transforming in front of you, wouldn't you either be A. Paralysed in fear or B. Running the fuck away?  [Redacted] does neither.  He's just unsure.  Actual line from the story: “A...are you sure about that?” [Redacted] said, sounding a little unsure about it. 

Nothing need be said about that.  So I'll do it anyway.

I mean... I hate, hate, HATE redundancy in a story.  I'm defining it here as telling me something, then telling me the same thing in a slightly different way very, very soon after.  Like in the same paragraph.  Or sentence.  And honestly... if [Redacted] is asking the other dude if he's sure about something, wouldn't it stand to reason that he's unsure about it himself?  So stop with the fucking redundancy. 

So what follows is a series of mangled noises, what I assume are supposed to be horse once since they threw a few 'neighs' in there or something, and what amounts to rape, theoretically.  And I say theoretical rape because [Redacted] doesn't show signs of resistance or anything but practically catatonic acceptance, and [Redacted] ends up enjoying it.

Of course.

Now, I'm not railing against gradually liking things.  For one, it's porn.  For two, it's possible, though it's some rapid Stockholm Syndrome or something.  But it's thin as hell, and that combined with such terrors as sound effects in dialogue broke things for me.  Example: “Oh yesssss...damn you’re *whicker* goooood!”  On the subject, you need not extend words so damn much.  It's lazy.  But damn if this entire story doesn't strike me as lazy.  

Now, you can call me a giant writing snob if you want.  Hell, I'll agree with you.  I am a snob.  I know what I like, and I know what I think is quality.  But really... if this is the kind of thing that is catching repeated comments saying how hot it was, then people need to be introduced to quality work, because this isn't good!  It isn't.  

Anyway, werehorse...thing blows a load in [Redacted]'s face after smothering him with his ass for a time, then [Redacted] changes into a werehorse too, during which the original werehorse mounts [Redacted].  Then the story ends with the two horses admiring each other's dicks before running off into the night to infect more people. 

Oh, and there's plenty more “MUHRAUHRAUH!”

pyrostinger: They say the eye is the window to the soul (Default)
(note to people using Livejournal/Dreamwidth: if you accidentally hit the 'back' key, make sure you don't then hit the 'forward' key to get back to your unfinished entry, because then it will come up blank and autosave over your original.  Do want multiple autosave options, plzkthx)

You know things aren't going to go well when the very first word of the story is "sighing".  Yep.  First word.  So when the emo ferret walks into a depressing bar, orders a warm beer in the depressing, smoke-filled atmosphere, and it's said that he would rather go to that crappy bar or watch TV rather than see what his friends are doing, then you know this is a world class emo.  Seriously, he sighs three times in the first two paragraphs. 

Doesn't help that there's some voice confusion in the story, with third person narrator suddenly going second person for a little bit, talking about how sad and pathetic this little emo boy's life is.  Lesson to writers everywhere: pick a voice and stick to it, dammit. 

Then, three girls walk in and instantly make the place more awesome through their sheer prettyfulness.  They are, as described in the story, a Jolteon pokemorph (?!) with huge tits, a human/bunny thing, and a vixen who's described as having a figure like Christina Aguilera.  Having both a pokemorph and a reference to contemporary stuff like Christina Aguilera sorta screws the setting up all to hell, since in a world where Christina Aguilera exists, Pokemon is a video game.  But apparently this was a commission, so fuck all that, it's fan fiction or something. 

So emo ferret is checking them out, but then sees them start playing grab-ass with each other, and surmises that they're all together.  So deciding that he no longer wants to attempt being social, our emo hero sighs and starts to walk out of the bar, only to be pulled back by the three girls.  What's this?  They think he's hot and have been checking him out as well?!?  What luck!

BUT LO, here comes some miscreant poker players, protesting that this emo dude lands the ladies (not that I blame them).  Emo ferret is polite initially, but when poker trio who smell of cigarettes and alcohol protest further, he unleashes his Kung Fu and knocks one of them clear across the room.  And LO, it turns out that this dude is a sleazebag with a wife at home, as he didn't bother to remove the ring before he started bitching.  Bet he beats her, too. 

So busty chicks and emo ferret introduce one another, and apparently they want to take him out on the town.  So what kind of ride does emo ferret have?  Why, it's a "2012 Chevy Camaro Transformers Edition"!  He's apparently well off, which makes him a RICH emo boy, which makes less sense.  I guess it's more tolerable that he takes them shopping and they put sexy things on for him and he passes out.  So what does he do?  Apparently he's a FAMOUS DJ!  So FAMOUS! that he implores the girls to stay close to him when they go to his job for a set, but not famous enough that he has some insecurity about whether or not they'll like it. 

Seriously, this guy is thinking while they're taking him to their house about how he's so lucky but unworthy of these girls, when they're practically throwing themselves at him, screaming FUCK US!  FUCK UUUUUUUUUUUS! and not letting him sigh his way out of it.  Goddammit, he's getting his dick wet tonight!  And despite being emo, and knowing Kung Fu, and a nice guy, he's apparently a dynamo in the sack too.  And he slips out in the early morning leaving his contact info, but they call him the next day to ask, nay, demand his presence for breakfast.  

Oh, and one of the girls has a dick.

pyrostinger: They say the eye is the window to the soul (Default)
Note: As with all Random Story Escapades, I won't mention the author or story unless I think the story deserves attention.  So far, this hasn't happened.

This one was weird.  I half-read the story over the course of a bit, because... well, the story was just kinda unremarkable.  Really, the fact that I read it was because I started reading it, and then was like... "Okay, this is pretty boring," and then went off to go do something else.  And then I came back because I forgot to close the story.  And I did finally end up reading, but I was, ultimately, unimpressed.  

First off, this story randomly used Doktor when it earlier used Dr for somebody of the same title.  Why was this?  Didn't really have any point, but it stuck out to me.  Another thing that stuck out was the use of German in the story.  Now, since the character was German I suppose it would make sense for the character to speak it, but in an otherwise English story, why was what little dialogue there was in German?  Also, I don't speak the language, but I suspect it's translated from some website.  Speaking of Germans, apparently the main character was a fuckin' Nazi, only not as such, and apparently a fringe Nazi or something, as in they're 'worried about the direction of the party' going too far right or something.  Which is kinda amazing, but I'm like... why the fuck is this character German?  Or a Nazi?  in reality, it didn't seem to have any bearing on the story at all aside from a sprinkling of Gratuitous German when the shit started happening or whatever.

Still, aside from those points, the story was pretty unremarkable.  Which is kinda amazing, considering there was a demon in it. 

One last thing.  I know this story is supposed to get all sexy in it, but why in the hell did the main character (female) go around sans panties because of the heat, then later in the story when the temperature rises, the first thing she takes off is her SKIRT.  Keep in mind she was wearing a full friggan uniform, and the first thing she takes off is her SKIRT.

Jeez.
pyrostinger: They say the eye is the window to the soul (Default)
Now, this one is a little different from the others as the stories in question I haven't actually read.  Why haven't I read it?  Because the author was so kind enough to let me and everybody else know up front that they were grammar errors in the following story.  Now, this is excusable if the author is not a native English (or insert language here) speaker.  But in just about all cases, that's a signal for me to move onto another story. Because if you're too lazy to fix grammar errors or, even worse, spelling errors, then I'm not going to read your story and nobody should.  Why?  Because that is just lazy, and laziness shouldn't be rewarded with views, much less comments.  

Yes, posting your story online isn't a book or a publication, but if you're going to be at least somewhat serious about writing, go through it once or twice.  Have a care for the flow of text.  Know what you want to say and how best to say it.  And for cryin' out Christ, if you're a budding author, don't tell me you don't care about grammar or spelling because both are extremely important!  If you have this great idea for a story, yet can't adequately express it because you don't give a shit about grammar, then you're placing this huge barrier between your potential readership and your great idea.  There are grammar rules for a reason, and that reason is that following those rules (and, when you know them, knowing when and how to bend or break them) gives you the best possible showcase for your story idea. 

In other words, don't make it harder for people to enjoy your story. 

October 2013

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