pyrostinger: They say the eye is the window to the soul (Default)
What purpose am I serving?

Yes, this is ostensibly a blog about writing, but pointing out mistakes from writers that are trying to do stuff and get better... hm.  Perhaps counterintuitive, even anonymously.  Will making fun of bad writing birth good writing?  Not necessarily.  Perhaps even not at all.  I say this because last time, I ended up being confronted (and summarily blocked on FA) by a friend of a writer of one of the stories I ended up disparaging, and she (I think it was a she, not sure) was upset, saying also that this person, had they come across my review, would be upset to the point of having to be talked off the ledge of never writing again.

While I find this particular response rather extreme and I did defend my position, it did sorta give me, and this blog, pause.  Of course, it didn't help that I've had a bit of an upheaval in my live in the intervening month, which also caused the blog to slow to a stop, as well.

If I want other amateurs to write more good stuff, if only for the entirely selfish reason of having more good stuff to read, then why do I point out the bad?  Easy, because some of that shit is so laughably bad that it's high comedy.  But other than having fun at other's expense... what does that serve?

Some people get giggles.  Other people... get offended.  I don't think I can quite pull off satire quite yet, especially not to even Yahtzee levels quite yet.  And while I'm fairly certain that I've made valid points, they can come off the complete wrong way. 

In essence, this is not to say that this is the death of the Random Story Encounter, but it will probably be featured less in my blog as I'll have other things to say about writing.  I'll probably write one up every now and then, and chances are they'll be less biting and sarcastic.  There are good stories out there, and I think the good ones deserve more attention than the bad.  Lord knows I have lots to improve in my own writing.  

What you will see is probably more professional style reviews, especially since my new job had created a definite book fund.  I can also probably telegraph the next few books that will be appearing; I bought recently a few books by Catherynne Valente, and plan to purchase the next Out of Position book: Isolation Play.  So there are two things that you guys can look forward to.

Until then, I have some writing of my own to do.
 


pyrostinger: They say the eye is the window to the soul (Default)
I first encountered this story, which is a sequel to a commissioned story, ages and ages ago on FA.  Don't remember specifically when, but it had been a while.  Recently, I found that the author was on SoFurry as well, and had posted a couple new chapters to the story, which I found myself a little surprised to be eager to read.  Honestly, I just wished that downloading stories was much less of a pain on SF, but there's not a lot I can do about that.  The writing wasn't the reason I was surprised at my eagerness, but it had more to do with the subject matter: cuckolding. 

Now, every cuckolding story  pretty much follows the same storyline.  For one reason or another, a married or long-term relationship between two partners is introduced to a third, and that third (the bull, I think) is seen as more and better sexually than one of the other partners.  If it goes on longer, than the cuckold is gradually getting less and less sex while the bull (I think those are the terms for it) gets more, up to and including inviting friends and associates to enjoy the cuckold's significant other.  Also, the bull is usually an asshole dominant personality. 

On an intellectual level, this pisses me off.  I get a pretty visceral reaction and really want the bull to stop being such an asshole, and generally wondering how they are able to seduce the significant other.  To that end, the story is almost never from the bull's point of view, but more from the cuckold's, so the reader is dragged along while they feel the pain of this jerk not only butting in on their relationship, but them getting very much the short stick while they're pushed around more and more, coupled with a dichotomous raging arousal as this is happening. And if the story is written well and gets into heavier stuff, I end up feeling rather divided as naughty things happen while the cuckold is usually staring at the other two. 

Specific to this story, a fox has just brought home a wolf to meet his human wife as the second chapter begins.  They all went to high school together and this is some years later, where a desire to keep his wife happy has lead the fox to seek out the wolf (who bullied him and stole his girlfriends) to perhaps spice up their sex life, never guessing that the wolf's assholish personality would lead to a secretive blow job (said fox is straight) in a bar followed by being dragged to his car by his dick, literally.  The wolf then proceeds to seduce the initially pissed off wife through a sob story and alcohol, all in the face of the increasingly hesitant fox. 

By this point, it's a runaway train that couldn't be stopped, so he's left to watch while the dominant jerk of a wolf bangs his wife like she's never been banged before, creating a bit of an addict in the process.  Though he initially benefits with a huge upswing in his own sex life, the wolf comes over more and more often and while he's at work, and there's less and less for him until by the fourth chapter, he's explicitly told that he won't be getting any.  This being after the wolf and a co-worker double team the poor wife in another room, with the fox brought in to clean her up with his tongue in the aftermath. 

The writing is the primary reason that I enjoy reading this so much.  Though it deals with a subject that would piss me off in any normal circumstance, it's so good that I found myself enjoying it and wanting to read more, if only to find out how messed up the relationship would go from there.  The writer seems to find great joy in the fox's distress, and that comes through in the story especially with all the ultimately tragic erections said fox has to deal with as he's browbeaten into accepting this new routine and lifestyle. 

To recap, despite the subject matter I would recommend giving this a shot if you're looking for something new to read.  If you find yourself become angry or upset, don't worry, you're supposed to feel that way. 

Unless you're some kind of heartless, asshole wolf.
pyrostinger: They say the eye is the window to the soul (Default)
Now, here's the very interesting thing about this story.  It tackled something that would probably be a question that somebody has to have asked at some point, which is to say exactly how are hybrids born, here?  Literally, how did they come out of the womb? 

Anybody who's been in or around the furry fandoms knows that hybrids are totally a Thing.  Tigersharks, wolfoxes, so on and so forth.  If you have the opportunity to make combinations of things, it either has been made or congratulations, you're the first one to make it!  Maybe.  But until now, generally I've just seen a bunch of handwaving as to how these combinations are actually brought into the world. 

The story starts with a male raccoon obstetrician helping out a couple that wants to, as much as possible, give birth naturally.  The issue, however, is that the mother's a cat, and the father's a bear.  It goes onto say that hybrid kids usually take after either the mother's or the father's species, but the size of the child can be either, which neatly establishes the rules for this particular universe.  And in this particular case, it's a big baby. 

Now, the story gets to the crux of the issue for the doctor when the baby is safely delivered, the parents prayed and thanked God for the safe delivery.  This rankles the doc because though he respected the parents' wishes for as natural a delivery as possible, he feels like Rodney Dangerfield; he gets no respect. 

The actual mechanics of the writing is pretty good, though it does ramble a little bit.  There are some, for me, curious word choices and perhaps an over-reliance on adverbs with dialogue tags.  But it is solid writing, and despite a name near the end that took me out of the story a little bit (Thrunder?  This is a name?), I did find myself enjoying the story. 

Overall, I think that you guys should check out Evertide and this story, and maybe say some nice things.  Apparently he's had a low opinion of his own writing.
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.   

October 2013

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