|Reviews for Death Decked Out In Motley|
| Complex Variable chapter 4 . 1/12/2013
[They will bring him to him.] - - - no. X( More generally, the pronoun use in the paragraph that this line is taken from needs to be cleaned up.
[They will take him away.] - - - I would insert a "Then" at the beginning of this sentence.
[Highly dangerous, even] - - - "Highly" doesn't sound right. "Extremely" or "Incredibly" or "Immensely" or something would sound better—just not "Highly". XD
[He stands there expressionlessly, unmoving] - - - I recommend "He stands there, unmoving; without expression" or "He stands there, unmoving, expressionlessly" or "He stands there, unmoving, expressionless."
As a side note, when you have an ellipsis ( ... ), the word after it is NOT capitalized (unless, of course it is a proper noun). An ellipsis is NOT a period. Put ( ... ), an ellipsis with a period if you end the sentence; then, you can have the next word be capitalized.
[(if his thoughts could ever be said to connect so simply)] - - - You know, I was really proud of you for not having parentheticals in this one, and then, you go and disappoint me. :P
[He hardly knows how he spoke back then. Like the King that roars. But when the redness faded—it was there. He understood then. He would have thought it beautiful, had he any conception of what beauty was.] - - - The tense jumps around here; it's distracting.
[This is the square where I took them—those who defied me—and hung them up by the thousands!] - - - Put this in quotes or italics. As is, having the sudden shift to first person doesn't work well. I didn't actually notice it until I read the work through for a second time. XO
I've read more of PKD's shorts than his longer works. Honestly, from just reading about "The Man in The High Castle", I have to say that it sounds immensely confusing/disorienting/trippy—in the classic Dickian sense, of course. XD A little too much for my taste, I'm afraid. Non-linear narratives, I can handle; mind-f—k stories, so-so; non-linear, paradigm-melting mind-f—ks... well... _
(Also, where did chapter 5 go? xO)
| Complex Variable chapter 5 . 1/9/2013
[he commented.] - - - what's wrong with saying "said" here.
["Well—yes."] - - - I would make this an ellipsis instead of an em-dash.
[It clicked as Rikt stood up suddenly.] - - - "It clicked as Rikt suddenly stood up." sounds better in my opinion. Maybe even "Rikt suddenly stood up. The floor clicked underneath his shoes."
So, Wolf gets killed by sniper shot? Okay then.
You should use the term "general" earlier on in this, as it is, it's a little confusing as to who's who—Rikt, Wolf, etc.
Not much else to say here, other than the fact that I'm probably getting close to the point where my review will be longer in terms of word-count than the thing being reviewed.
I would consider adding an italicized "Click." at the very end of this piece, just to emphasize the shooting for us poorer, denser intellects. ;)
| Complex Variable chapter 3 . 1/9/2013
You added the references via author's notes! Wunderbar! :D
[I was twenty-four years old before I realized what was happening. Call me blind.] - - - Maybe "Call me blind, if you will. I was twenty-four years old before I realized what was happening."? I think it sounds smoother.
[only through a glass darkly…] - - - the biblical phrase is "through a glass, darkly" (note the comma). Also, you need an extra period following the ellipsis.
[The Finale, the Climax, the big KA-BANG.] - - - I would make it "The Finale. The Climax. The Big KA-BANG." The periods, I think, emphasize the rhythm here better than commas would.
[I had only been an extra this time] - - - "had been" Passive voice. I would do "I was only an extra this time"
[that got icepick-kicked in the head,] - - - "icepick-kicked" is very fun to say. XD However, it's "ice-pick" (hyphen). Also, you might want to consider "that got kicked in the head with an ice-pick," You might also want to add a mention of Trotsky, just because of the WWII stuff, and the fact that he was killed in exactly this method. Or maybe it was a pickaxe? I don't know. Pickaxe, ice-pick—close enough. XD
[one of my favorites at least. Can stand] - - - "one of my favorite things. I can stand" (also, "one of my favorite things" is a reference to the song from "The Sound of Music", which is also about Nazis and WWII. ;)
[I think he got lost in thought, the Director, as] - - - Just make it "I think the Director got lost in thought, as". It sounds awkward, the way you worded it—and not in a good way.
[lot. If security was getting that lax.] - - - "lot, like if security had gotten that lax."
I would point out more stuff, but I'm kinda tired right now. XD Didn't sleep well last night, I'm afraid. (x;x)
Okay, so, it's now official: you've gone off the deep end as far as the parenthetical comments go. You have parenthetical comments INSIDE parenthetical comments. That's where I draw the line. Such things are not meant for human eyes, except maybe mathematicians'. XD
[It was like Hamlet's ghost and father and Lancelot] - - - the ghost WAS Hamlet' father; this is worded confusingly.
This is one of your most lucid pieces yet! :O So, a Nazi/Neo-Nazi sneaks onto the set of a WWII flick? XD If that's the case, I think you could do a better job at conveying the Nazi-ness of the stranger; the description of his uniform is about half-way there in terms of what you need to do. Maybe making the stranger express a sense of nostalgia, or breathe in the air on the set like it's the fresh mountain air of spring in the Aryan Reich, or something. XD
Also, your Nazi fixations is starting to worry me. In that respect, you're beginning to seem like my mother. XD
| Complex Variable chapter 2 . 1/5/2013
[What I mean to say is, he wasn't moving. All he did was lie in bed. Gaping up at the ceiling. And to make it more horrifying, as if to make up for the fact he couldn't budge, he talked and talked and talked. Or more accurately, he raved.] - - - Hey, at least people hear me! XD
[blacked] - - - don't you mean "blackened"?
["It was so pathetic," he said softly, "that it made my head hurt."] - - - Hmmmm... *Thinks* Unless by "pathetic" you mean "emotional", you might just be calling me a hyprocrite. XD
._. Meh. We're all hypocrites, to one degree or another. What matters is where our hypocrisies are, and whether we acknowledge them or not.
[It sent chills down my spine—words don't convey it, it was the way he said it. Or maybe the look in his eyes. So sorry to say, no bones about it, I bolted. I was in a cold sweat and I don't think I even started breathing properly until I was about twenty miles from that place.] - - - If I did this to you, I'm sorry, okay? XD
You know, it's far more interesting, reading your more abstract work, when I have some knowledge of the inspirations and underpinnings behind it. It makes it less enigmatic—more approachable. I actually think that including/mentioning your "inspirations"/"references" for you more abstract works (as you do here in the chapter headings) would be helpful to your audience. It wold give them an analytical structure with which they could better digest your writing.
Still, quite nice. Beautiful, even. [It was—like sitting in one of those places, you know, under the iron sky and on the dirt floor and drawing circles on the ground with sticks. And then you look up and see the Aurora Borealis, hear that strange music, you know so old, so full of longing—those words—those words we don't even have words for. ] - - - This is my favorite passage so far. :)
| Complex Variable chapter 1 . 1/5/2013
You're definitely skilled at writing prose poetry! :D
Though, I must ask—why the parenthetical comments? I think they'd work just as well without the parentheses; as it is now, the parenthesis disrupt the "smoothness"/"streaming" of your prose.
[seacold] - - - I think this should be hyphenated: "sea-cold"
[as in their family the daughters did not marry army officers.] - - - this phrasing is awkward. When you write "as in" you mean "in other words, I mean that", right? You can probably find a smoother-sounding better way of saying this, IMO.
[considerations besides.] - - - I would put a comma between these two words.
[As a result of which] - - - the "of which" sounds especially dissonant. I would try to find a different way of phrasing this.
[All huddled up in our holes, worrying about these stupid things when there's really something much bigger lurking on the horizon. Leviathan. ] - - - For some reason, I think this would sound better if you were talking about multiple "somethings"; i.e "All huddled up in our holes, worrying about these stupid things when there are giants lurking on the horizon. Leviathans."
Also, I would set off [Grin. (The rose has thorns but then again barbed wire does too.) Do you feel it? This power twisting all around us, pressing closer all the time?] as a separate paragraph. Also, also, I recommend "The powers twisting" instead of [This power twisting].
The last passage is strange; it seems akin in spirit to the piano-incident passage, and yet, it's written in the present tense, like the previous passage—where the narrator is speaking directly. I think that you should put the last passage of this "chapter" in past tense, just because it creates a better sense of closure, and a stronger feeling of symmetry in the story's form: first recollection, then reflection, then recollection, again. Ex: (I recommend)
"She felt them only when she wrote. She was a hard, cruel genius. But her cold laughter would warm herself. She would rise above herself. She would let their Downfall be her uprising. She would only believe in a God that knew how to dance." (also, I think you can pick a better word than "uprising")
All in all, nice. And, it makes SENSE—which is even nicer! :D
| True Talker chapter 1 . 1/5/2013
This makes me think.