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9/13/2011 c1 99Dreamers-Requiem
Really well written one-shot - i liked the use of the "Beijing Olympics" line, and the recurring water theme. The father was written really well; a strong representation of someone who, for all intents and purposes, has just given up, and I think you showed that brilliantly. Cho's love for her brother was portrayed really well, and I like the way you showed how it was almost coming between her and Leo. The line [It was only a house. Nothing much to lose then.] was really effective, especially as it's evident that it's not 'only' a house, and that it is quite a lot to lose. The only thing I noticed was that, near the start, you switch from third to first person with the line [Leo crossed his arms and glanced at me.] Other than that, really great stuff.
9/9/2011 c1 11Javajive
I thought I'd return the favour and comment on your entry.

I don't know what I was expecting but it wasn't this. Your story, god, it just tugged me right in, I felt like I tumbled into these people's lives. How vividly you paint the heartbreak of being evicted, 'sacrificing for your country'. Your exquisite choice of words just blew me away.

"May the emperor's dragon smile kindly upon us. It is our turn. Arise, people of the dragon." This line of propaganda changed it's meaning the further down the page I got. At first it seemed the harmless nonsense a regime tells its people and later on, a grave insult.

I liked the setting of your story and the simplicity of the premises. There was so much emotion in it and nothing overdone or melodramatic. I appreciate when writers portray a gruesome scene with a dry eye... I don't know what to call it but that's how I think. You don't tell the readers how we are supposed to feel, but leave it all up to us.

I particularly liked the way you portray the father. He seems like such a wonderful character without being soppy. Though his resignation to his fate strikes me as immensely sad. I wanted to tell him to get up and fight.

The closing line is wonderful, how it ties in with the theme of the prompt and goes back to your opening phrase. Thank you for a great read!

This entry seriously makes me just want to withdraw from the challenge. I have a feeling you will do really well but good luck in any case!
9/5/2011 c1 16Dragon made me do it
I feel like this story is kind of a story behind the story - we all heard about the Olympics without knowing much about how it affected individuals living there. The grit behind the glitz.

I liked the way you have opened with the description in italics here - it is not often that you see fantastical references allowed anywhere near the sporting arena, but that was something that is possible in a place like China.

I was impressed that you have brought up the subject of the government demolishing houses for the Olympics. This seems to happen a lot when they have major international spectacles in big Third World cities, clearing out the poor. It is particularly shocking to see it happen in a 'communist' country who is supposed to be looking after its poor.

The way is story unfolds is very well done, none of your words are wasted in plot development, and you meander between specific events and back story in a well-crafted way.

I like this concept of allowing the noise of dripping water to continue as a reminder of the passage of time. people don't always behave in a totally rational or utilitarian way and it makes it more realistic to use reasons like this as a motivation for someone's behaviour. it also helps with your metaphor of water as something that appears weak but can create great damage.

I like the wording in the following lines:

'A girl flicked her lighter on and off, on and off, flashing fire in the depths of her eyes ... Cho watched the droplet gathering fatter and fatter till it fell into the pool.'

'Everything called home crumbling. It already was.'

'You fight gravity with every step you take.'

'the huge machines rolling over buildings as if they were Lego under a child's hand' (I'm getting a sense of the opening of hitchhikers guide to the Galaxy here, but in a much more serious/political way)

'She squinted through the blood gluing her lashes together '

Oh and I love the end sentence!

Well done and best of luck in the contest :-)


'And immersed in three languages he knew how to play with words' - I would put a '-' , ':' , or '.' after languages.

This may not be universal, but when I was working for government we were taught that if you are talking about a specific government, then it is capitalised, whereas if you are talking more broadly, all about several governments, it is lowercase. So where you say 'the injustice of the government' I would put that in caps.

'It was as if the Reds' bulldozers crushed the house already.' - put 'had' after bulldozers

'racking you from inside out' - I thought this should be 'racking you from the inside out'

'his lips whispering her my cheek'- not sure what this means

'Cardboard boxes, empty cartoons' - not sure if this was supposed to be cartons. I know you have talked about writing cartoons but I don't know what an empty one is so I wasn't sure.

'His hair had thinned at he top' - he should be the.

'Run away to where it would never din her.' - din?

'Cho reached up to sooth out the tension' - soothe
9/4/2011 c1 58Inkspilled
Wow, I think this was brilliantly written, the narration, the deliberate repetition of her name, like a children's story. This was very well done, and suspense was built perfectly with every bit of information that was given. This really took the prompt into a completely original setting, but it was done effectively. I could feel the emotion in the writing. Really great work. :)
9/4/2011 c1 5Dr. Self Destruct
I really liked the first paragraph in regards to the water and the dripping of the drops. The first few sentences had a nice flow to them, and I thought it was clever how you reflected back on this (the dripping) later on in the story. I'll admit, history is one of my weak points, so I wasn't able to really appreciate the more historical side of things (I honestly don't really know who these Reds are; thank Florida schooling for that, haha), but I am able to relate to the emotions of each character, especially their father (he impacted me the greatest).

The images of the house falling apart near the end were well done. The way Cho sees the world as moving and shattering makes things feel all the more realistic. I also like how you incorporated the prompt there at the end, what with the blood and the fly circling into the sky with the dragons.

[Beijing Olympics: it is the Year for us to shine. May the emperor's dragon smile kindly upon us. It is our turn. Arise, people of the dragon.

Boy MIA]

This really caught me by surprise. Such a great contribution to the story - I could really feel the climax approaching when I read this.

My only complaint would be that given the small amount we're able to work with (under 2,000 words), I did find it hard to follow all the characters in my first read through. They all seem to have their own back stories that could encompass a much longer, more detailed story, and squeezing them all together in under 2,000 words made me have to read this a couple times to get everything straight.

Good luck with the WCC. :)

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