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One Shot
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Shot Through the Heart
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Alone Together
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Silent Gestures
I Regret Nothing
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Alive and Wubbing It
True Colors
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Lights Sparkling in the Night
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Where the Shadows Run
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We're Complicated
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#13773 · 5
Well, I got... something in at the last minute (sleep is so sweet). I apologise to everyone who reads it. It will be better when it hits fimfic. I'm ashamed but not sorry at all, and giddy to boot.

Congrats to everyone who submitted!
#4792 · 4
· · >>CoffeeMinion >>Moosetasm
Woo-Hoo! I wrote something! It's been too long.

>>CoffeeMinion >>Moosetasm
High fives all around, We did a thing!
#4795 · 4
I honestly wonder how many people got their start here in the WriteOffs, I know I did.
Good Job! YAY!
Ahh, self hatred and depreciation. The mark of a TRUE writer.
#13752 · 4
Half way done... 5 hours left... work in the morning... LETS DO THIS!
#15174 · 4
· · >>Fenton
I envy you. I'm in the throes of Dead Week right now and it's killing me.
#10870 · 3
· on Elevator
I have to agree with the others. This needs more to it than an ending that pushes Josh nowhere. Giving Miranda an opinion and then pushing her in towards that opinion would be better.

Given that she said "Optimism can be nice, sometimes." it seems that she likes him. Make that obvious. Have her give him some tangential advice out of the blue like: "Did you know that Larry likes to pick out his ties? Not many people notice." Then, instead of Josh being 'led to a conference room', he is met by a man when he gets off the elevator who says "Right on time. You must be Josh, I'm Larry. Follow me."

I'm also not really fond of the "I'm the boss" reveal because, like >>Ranmilia, I saw this coming from the moment he said Interview. So instead of the twist I think it better to have her walk into her office labeled Miranda Kaufmann and let the reader be like "Ah-Ha!" rather than beat them over the head with it. Maybe sit her down at the desk and have her check the 'Intern applying today' email. Wrap it all up together.

I get that this is probably the completed scene in your head, otherwise you wouldn't be sitting at 640 words, but try to leave us with impact, you have the room. I believe that stories should always be as a wave: with rises and falls in tension, drama, and pacing. If those waves are too small then the reader has a hard time noticing them.
#10883 · 3
· on Shot Through the Heart
Thanks everyone for your comments, I really appreciate it! Now for that thing I've been waiting to do for the past week...

>>TitaniumDragon My original Idea for the cadet's inner conflict was that he went through a bad breakup or something and was bitter about some people being given 'true love' on a silver platter when he had to work so hard and suffer for it. I would have liked to put it in there, but I didn't want to show my hand too early.

As opposed to sitting violently on a park bench?

That sounds like a wonderful prompt. It sounds like a silly world where people's emotions depend on their body posture: neutral standing, depressively lounging, joyfully crouching, violently sitting. All this leads to a social obsession with remaining vertical at all times, and really sore feet.

>>Cold in Gardez I think the reason I didn't run with the concept from the get-go is because I wanted to play it straight, and I thought that the concept would end up being a little too ridiculous to do that with if I started with "Hey! Cupid's got a rifle and he's passing out love~!"

>>AndrewRogue I am curious what you mean by that. I don't know, because otherwise I probably wouldn't have done it, so if you might be able to explain it to me I would appreciate.

Yes, playing it straight would have allowed me to tell the deeper story but I wasn't sure how to do that.

>>Ranmilia Heh. Really? Flowers gave it away? I'll admit that the name is almost pony-esq in the way it works, but I didn't think THAT would give away the identity of my shooters. Flowers was something of an obscure reference to Captain Flowers from RVB. I didn't want to give him a name like Johnson, normal names wouldn't work for my trainee as he doled out love-based fates, and Flowers just fit so well I kept it.

>>Not_A_Hat That song was the ENTIRE reason for the title. Was sitting there thinking "Finished, now what to call it..?" and the drum beat starts in my head. *DUM* *DUM* Shot through the heart, and you're too late. Baby you give love, a bad name.

The numbers were an attempt to drop more hints but obfuscate what was going on and not let it be too obvious, thus the spelling out rather than putting 2.14 on the page. Originally my plan was for the newspaper at the end to land at the date Feb 14, but that felt WAY too ham handed to me. This was my attempt to hide the plot while allowing for people to have the ah-ha and see the flags that I dropped if they went back and read it a second time.

Thank you again for all the comments, I really didn't expect to place this high in the rankings and it was a wonderful surprise!
#18590 · 3
· on The Stars Stand Strong · >>Cold in Gardez >>Anon Y Mous
So this story falls right into the "Humans are the Real Monsters" Trope. The humans are killing these things because they're there, and apparently because that's 'Just What Humans Do'. In my experience, humans always have a reason for how they react- even if that reason is 'I'm Scared'- and painting them as uncaring kill-bots who also love their children is too simple for something as complex as a human.

The monster in this story doesn't behave like a human- he is a human in every way except for the brief mentions of his physical appearance. Every living thing is a product of the environment from which they evolved. Humans developed hands and brains to survive, so why would an enormous black dog creature evolve in a multicolored jungle? There needs to be more to differentiate these creatures from humans.

Their entire species can also apparently speak and read the human's language perfectly. If the humans just showed up one day and started killing things, as humans apparently do, then how did the creatures get access to the human culture and history?

The boy notes at one point how what he is experiencing is very much different from what a "human from Earth" would experience. This insinuates that 1- these humans came from earth, and 2- they have the ability to move from earth to this planet. This being the case and lacking any apparent magic, why are they using arrows for military action? Especially poisoned ones.

Finally: The Arrow.
A Bit of Realism: I know it's often ignored in fantasy and media, but yanking old-timey arrows out is usually a really bad idea. Those arrowheads were usually secured with a bit of gut or string, and had a tenancy to loosen when whetted by something like blood. This could leave the arrowhead behind to cut the person up from the inside every time they moved. Much more dangerous than leaving a bullet inside someone.
#10763 · 2
· on It's Going To Be Fine · >>shinygiratinaz
I’m sorry to say I saw the twist coming, so it lacked much of the impact it might otherwise have had. The moment that the gun had only one bullet I immediately thought “it’s The Mist by Steven King”. From there things played out as expected. I think it would have been interesting to pull the double fake and explore the consequences her committing suicide and leaving the kid to drown. You could keep it exactly the same until the gun sinks out of sight, then hit us with the words "M-Mrs Morrison?" again. I guess you could still have him rescued at the last moment but that kinda cuts out all the delicious emotions.

That said the writing is pretty solid, although the style seems to lend itself more to longer form writing. The descriptions and backstory are rather detailed for a format where every word is like water in the desert. I was also pulled out a bit when I ran into things like her reliance on visual cues in an environment that I assume is pitch black or ignoring her bleeding leg after two seconds. I can’t help but feel that focusing on her other senses – touch, smell, hearing, pain, cold – might have been more potent in an area with restricted light.
#13721 · 2
First time I write in a Short Stroy round and I get nothing for a whole day. Now my fingers won't stop and I'm not sure whether to be terrified or ecstatic! What do I do?!

Edit: Holy crap! They're right. A picture really is worth a thousand words!