Just In
for Meeting Room 2407

7/4/2011 c1 6Ezekiel Finch
Hi there!

I want so say thank you so much for the review! It really made my day and I thought I'd repay the favor!

I first will comment on the style of the story as a whole. I think you nailed the "monotomous office" on the head. Everything is simple, nothing is out of the ordinary, and every character fits into a specific niche of the office sterotype. We have the creepy old guy, the socially inept cat lady, the hot masculine character, the butt kisser, and the office manager who is more or less the wizard behind the curtain. You really instill this air of predestined machinery that makes us feel the eunni of the office culture.

The next thing I like is your female character. The fact that our character is a female working outside the manager's office implies that Cindy Shepherd is a female in a low position. This allows you to portray a feminist struggling to overcome male domination in her carrer which provides you with many emotional, economic, and personal conflicts to explore upon. Cindy is clearly a character who wants to move up in life and the only thing preventing her from doing so are the people around her and above her. She seems to believe that she can go up and up and up as long as she keeps a positive attitude, she dresses properly, and does her work. I like how you don't overplay her confidence to the point it becomes cocky, and how you give her these flaws that make her seem like her dependency on routines is her only downfall. Is she creative enough to rise to a challenge? Is she daring enough to leave her comfort zones? Only time can tell...

In addition, I really like the absurd existence that you paint in this office culture. Often we think of lines and lines of white cubicles with mindless drones ready to end their own useless existence when the word "office" comes up. But I think you also expose the reality of office culture when you show Bob the creepy old guy and Cindy's observations about him. He's an employee on his last legs before retirement, a father, and a newly made bachelor. The fact that he obseses over Buffy the Vampire Slayer, has a son that that is about to have a sex change, and he dresses without any care or concern for his own appearance makes him absolutely rediculous. It's like a person falls down on a sippery surface at the Supermarket but we can't help but laugh. Regular life is boring, it takes a real talent to make the boring exciting and I think you executed it in this chapter. You spice the stark reality with a hint of absurd and wwe readers and enjoy the experience instead of being bored out of our own minds.

I noted a few hiccups in the chapter. Most of them are

She took a card from her wallet and read from it positive affirmations...

[This sounds a bit lengthy so try removing the words "from it" which should keep the phrasing nice and crisp]

He left his wife of 42 years last April, and now had nothing left to lose.

[Are you saying that he left his wife that had been with him for the past 42 years or he left his wife that had been 42 years old? It was a bit confusing with the phrasing]
6/23/2011 c1 16Capritarius - Bird of Passage
I very much enjoyed that first bit with the "surface so sleek," but I feel like going on about silken slivers and lightsabers might have been overdoing it. In a poem, perhaps, it might have fit better. In a chapter about walking into an office, it seems a bit much.

The way you write Cindy, in contrast, is clean and to the point and with the sort of bite do it ("the only way he was going to respect her..." "attempts at glib office humour") that I think keeps people reading (actually, that can apply to all your characters). And while the ending was a bit abrupt, I really liked the idea of glazing her reputation.

My biggest critique, I think, is that I'm not sure who this is being written for. I'm going to be honest, I opened this story because of some promise of teleportation, and I feel like the people who read about teleportation to other worlds and the people who read about office politics are not often the same people.

In short, are you writing about an office worker who keeps accidentally teleporting, or a woman who keeps accidentally teleporting, and once worked in an office?
6/11/2011 c1 3Kristin Li
[she snuck into the toilets] Unless you are really small, you can't exactly sneak into the toilets (unless that is a common Auzzie expression). You can technically sneak into the bathroom, but in the context on the story, that seems a little bit unnecessary. Perhaps substituting "sneak" for a different word would suffice.

I liked this story, until the last 9 or so paragraphs, which for some reason caused me to lose interest in the story. I do like the beginning, and I liked your short description of the office, and each of Cindy's coworkers.

Writing wise, it gets repetitive after a while because you use a lot of sentences that start with "she", making the story kind of read like "she did this" "she did that". But other then that, the writing was satisfactory. There were a few things-for example Cindy's hair suit and overall appearance-that I could picture pretty clear in my mind.

Normally, I dislike the tell method of developing character, but for this story it worked rather well. The few details that you choose to explicitly tell the reader, stand out in my mind, and help me picture the overall atmosphere of the office, which seems diverse. From what you did tell us about Cindy, she seems like an interesting characters...I would have liked to see more interaction with her and her co-workers, while at the same time seeing some connection between the things discussed at the beginning of the chapter, to the chapters ending. It would have liked to see the reason behind why Cindy doesn't feel respected at her workplace, boss, etc. At one point, you did mention that she felt like an outsider-things like that I would have liked to see develop as opposed to just being told.

The plot didn't seem as tight as I would have liked it. It's not that the pacing was bad or anything-I just didn't feel like everything discussed in the story was necessarily important. Like the e-mails. Why not just mention the one that was important?
6/11/2011 c3 30sophiesix
I love her strategy for dealing with meetings XD I feel like we're getting into the meat now. The pace is awesome here. Thus, (and especially with the short length of 2 and 3), i'd consider merging chapters 1 and 2, and potentially three. You want the sand worm in your first chapter. I’d start with her walking in the office, I think, greeting her co-workers and thinking about whether her morning routine mit hair straightener etc was holding up. That way you get all that characterisation in succinctly, while still progressing rapidly to the meat of the story: the worm :D

More please!
6/10/2011 c1 sophiesix
What lovely polished writing! all your editing sure has paid off.

"A surface so sleek you could slip right off." Love that. Rhythmic, great flow, great voice. Personally, i think its good enough as a stand alone, and including the "shiny, smooth, silken slivers snaking down her sharp-edged suit" doesn't add much more?

Plenty of great lines here! Love the ending one especially, a great line to finish on.

ok, the show don't tell thing? for example: "She was slightly embarrassed when somebody walked in to hear the last bit, but relieved to see them look down awkwardly and scurry into the cubicle." THis is a tell, to me. It works fine, but teh effect of telling teh reader seh was embarrased then relieved is that it creates a slight distance between the reader and the character. If you describe her embarassment, e.g. cheeks colouring or whatever, then the reader feels what the character is feeling much more closely, and is more absorbed into the story. Perhaps you want this distance, particularly at this stage when the office environment is one in which Cindy can't be her real self, so is herself distanced. THe problem with it in a first chapter is that because its a bit distancing, it's harder for teh reader to get hooked - you are relying a lot more heavily on other things to hook them in.

BTW, is she american? if so, why? Just curious.

Interesting task you've set for yourself in describing an ordinary office for a first chapter: It has be both engaging (which i think you've pulled off nicely) but also show why it's soul-destroyingly boring without boring the reader (this i'm less convinced of: but its a very difficult line to tread. I found the quirky characterisation interesting and true to life, and because it was all new to the reader, and also because Cindy was trying so hard to engage, didn't get the impression of boredom so much?). I'm also unsure why Cindy feels like an alien in this environment she seems to have it all under control? THat particular internal aspect of it could be clearer maybe.

Great stuff Ms Dragon!
6/10/2011 c1 12Deedee Elle
I love the alliteration in the first paragraph.

Your introduction to the characters is good, each one comes across as individual in few sentences.
36 « Prev Page 1 .. 3

Twitter . Help . Sign Up . Cookies . Privacy . Terms of Service