|Reviews for The Last Mile|
| J112011 9/26/12 . chapter 2
Sigh, this is hard to read, because it makes me think of all the people I know who went through cancer treatment, and some who are still fighting the battle and might not win.
Don't get discouraged by few reviews. It's hard to get reviews on FictionPress, and I suppose it might be hard for people to read through this whole story, because people would rather read happy, giving hope stories. I don't suppose this one will have a happy ending. But as I said, don't get discouraged, just keep writing.
On another note, I wonder if you realize that the way you wrote the following bit could be read in a different way than you intended:
'I'm still fighting Lord. I'm still in the trenches, throwing everything I've got at this bastard. Come on then, you son-of-a-bitch. Come try to take another piece of me, if you've got the guts. Go after my liver, my lungs, my kidneys, my prostate, my brain, or anything else you care to try. I'll fight you wherever you want, anytime you want.
From the previous chapter I'm assuming that your character is not fighting Lord, but that's how I read it :) (sorry, I'm not a religious person)
| J112011 9/26/12 . chapter 1
This is not an easy story to read for me, since I'd rather not think about what it would be like to be trapped inside your body, your mind intact, but not being able to communicate with anyone, or do anything. But that's why I thank you again for posting this bit here, though in addition to leukemia you also throw a failed marriage and a suicide attempt into the mix, and that makes this story even harder to swallow (because I'm sure situations like what you described do happen).
| WhiteKnightro 9/24/12 . chapter 2
Yes, it does seem to be jumping around. Some of my comments reflect that. It’s me trying to write your story. Use what you can in what I say and leave the rest.
All the parts are here, keeping moving them around until you build the engine.
As always, lots of good stuff is in the energy and optimism of John. The situation here is what intrigues us. The grim is relentless but so is the fighting hope inside John.
Opening is solid and charged with personality, which a story about a guy in a coma needs.
Have you thought about writing this in first person? Or alternating narrators?
The love with Tam here is so good. The story needs that to ground us. We can only imagine the death gloom in a bright room, but most of us have been in love.
Cole is rock solid. Real. The reader is nodding along here. We need to be touched and we are.
Work on the transition to the video unveiling. It was a little confusing to read. Dunno, maybe just me. But the payoff is so good you want the set-up to be right.
_Loved_ the romance novel riffing and the business about _The Core_
Dr. Doak. Gotta have more. He’s not 3D here. A guy working with dying children. You gotta dig deeper on this one.
Okay, all the meat is here. But there is also fat. The fat must be trimmed. Let’s ID some fat and work it off. What follows are some suggestions for things that might take the story to the next level.
“He was the calm inside the raging storm that was health care at work.” This is good, but the hurricane is the storm that has a calm center (sounds like a slogan from the hurricane PR dept). Would the line be better: “He was the calm inside the raging hurricane that was health care at work,” then extend the metaphor slighty by talking about what John has seen in the hospital hurricane.
Rephrase, make fresh dept:
“Hustle and bustle”.
Pronoun reference clarity: “Whitman flexed his legs to the beat.” Reads like Whitman is flexing his own legs.
“He kept an image of his own father in mind, knowing that any asshole male could become a father. It took a real man to be a daddy.” This should be developed.
“They were just trying to cover up the information they didn't know.” Reprhrase.
About Jack: very good, very good, but don’t tell us flatly: “It was heartbreaking” drop that line and let our hearts break the way John’s is. We are scared for John. Let us have that.
About the events. Consider: If you want this story to punch us then you can’t tell Jack’s tale and he dies, then Alan’s tale and he dies, you must take us to higher in the air. Give us all the fun, build our hopes in the ward with these guys, make us want them to live, then smack us in the face with the meanness of it.
As the writer you have vast power. You don’t have to stick to the events in one way. You can move them around to manipulate the audience. When journalists due it they are being unethical. When fiction writers do it they are working in God’s shop. It's what makes journalists unethical, the temptation to make people feel. You have HUGE potential here. Don't stop.
Keep it coming dude. You keep writing I’ll keep reading.
| WhiteKnightro 8/5/12 . chapter 1
Dude, SO glad you are digging into this one. LOTS of good stuff here.
Personal favorites: "shitass" the prick father, the GOD philosophy, Beth the Nurse.
Need MORE about Beth, wife, but I'm sure that is coming.
Tremendous potential with the narrator being cut off from the physical. He "knows" the real Beth, what happens if he gets to see the physical Beth? He loves his wife but, can a guy cheat without hands-on action.
It is your story, bud, and the options you have right now are limitless. Wrap your writin' fingers around this one and ride boy, ride!
Still gotta get some proofing going. "Planet" not "plant." As this goes places that kind of stuff will matter more and more.