|Reviews for The Snake|
| Hedonistic Opportunist chapter 1 . 12/23/2014
Writing: I clicked on this piece, because of the descriptive summary. I expected some really good prose, and I was not disappointed :D! I love your language here. It's very vivid and descriptive, with the emotion packed just so into the prose that it really makes you feel what the man is going through. You really feel his fear, his despair, and his hatred of the 'snake'. I also like how creative you are, when it comes to describing this snake, the descriptions really realistic in terms of the plot (the man would not know what the snake is, and so resorts to language only he understands). I like how the descriptions are not obvious either, but are so veiled and foggy that we are left guessing, and only figure out what’s going on by the end.
I like that this piece is dramatic, but not a parody. It’s sarcastic still, with the ending giving us some dark comedy, but there is no denying that the sharp contrast between the ending, and the more dramatic language (which the man/hero uses) showcase that you intend this piece to be thought-provoking. I like how you really show how the snake has shattered the lives of these people.
I also really like how the prose follows the style of old folktales; it fits in with what the snake represent and the man’s desire to turn into a hero.
Plot: I really like how this is such a dark take on the desire of one man to become a hero, only to have his life cut short in the most … well, cruel and yet random of ways. It’s a cruel story, because it shows how reckless this world is, and how little our lives really signify. I like that; it appeals to the jaded person within me lol.
Anyhow, on a deeper vein, I really how this is a commentary too on how these people’s lives have been ruined. It’s thought-provoking in this case too, because you directly give us access to the perspective of such a person, making it much poignant (because we are made to feel how he feels about this). I like that you never get too political in this case, not making this piece too didactic, which I feel would rob it of its impact.
I enjoy the dark comedy of this piece too. It’s cruel yes, but it somehow makes everything a lot darker (also it is your trademark, yo XD /imitates Jesse Pinkman, because she can).
Dialogue: While this piece had very little dialogue, I really liked how towards the ending, we got this more characteristic dialogue of …some American region (I’m not American). I liked it, because it made the piece feel so much more vivid, and also told us something about these men (how they were edgy, maybe less educated…? Also, very jovial and unconcerned about the fact that they’d just killed a man effectively).
I also liked how it marked such a contrast to the fic earlier, making it suddenly far more modern and contemporary. It really also helped make the POV switch in this case feel very natural. I also think it made the humour so much more striking, because of how the fic went from more poetic/archaic to suddenly being very, very contemporary.
I also think that your dialogue sounded very natural, and it flowed well with the rest of the text.
Ending: I liked the ending because of how it was rather unexpected. I was expecting this fic to take place within a historical setting, but no, it was modern XD. I liked that; it made this piece memorable to me, making me think, yet again, that you should never just assume something.
Otherwise, I just really liked, yet again, how ‘happy’/’unconcerned’ the ending was, really hammering the message of cruelty and carelessness on part of these white men home here. Yes, you used humour to show this, but I liked it, because you didn’t ‘tell’ us anything, but let us – or me – come to conclusion on the basis of the words these men used, and how they just didn’t care about what they’d done.
I also liked the subversion here, of how the man who wanted to become here, at the end, was turned into nothing but …well, something to be discarded. It was kind of tragic, really. I think it was especially tragic, because of how he’d wanted to be so much more.
| alltheeagles chapter 1 . 1/13/2014
For the RG EF
The writing has the tone of a legend or folk tale in the first part, which turns modern after the train has crushed the warrior. That's creative, and I think the effect could have been strengthened even more, perhaps with mentions of some native legends and the like. Your descriptive writing is very vivid and striking. Still, the presence of numerous errors does distract me somewhat because I have the kind of semi-obsessive personality that seeks perfection. I think you should do some editing to make the writing shine brighter. For instance, his horse'S faint cool breathing, gushed FORTH, spurred IT towards, and so on that I didn't list out.
| lookingwest chapter 1 . 1/7/2014
There was some really lovely language here in this piece. I particularly liked the verb "pumped" in the first paragraph to refer to wind, and I liked your "s" alliterations in the fifth character, playing off the snake sounds. Some great figurative moments, and the reason I like them is because they obviously really fill out your opening scene, it's very rich and full.
I felt perhaps the ending of this piece was rushed. I was wondering at first if this was some sort of fairy-tale like story, like the trickster tales, etc. and I was wondering what time period we were in too - in that vein, this ending felt abrupt because I got both answers answered so quickly I had to pause a moment. The snake-as-train is clever, but I'm wondering if we could linger there in the last scene with more of that figurative language to help give us more of a setting at the end between the train men. It's mostly dialogue - but I think it could be rounded out a little more.
Other than that though, the dialogue was good, and I think the theme of the Native overcome by the technology and brutality of the colonists is clear. Good piece, liked the last line as well - and the attention paid to nature/earth verses the snake and its destruction as well. Felt like the beginnings of a destruction myth!