|Reviews for The Arm is Called a Brachium|
| Jalux chapter 1 . 3/27/2015
As an opening this is definitely effective because no everyone knows brachium is an arm and it ties in nicely to the title. It's also pretty cool because it tells us the narrator is a doctor or at least a medical student without infodumping us which is always good. I like the voice as well, it's intelligent but fun to read because they seem so irritated.
So the main character seems irritable because they are somewhat drunk? I do like the voice as I said before and they really seem to hate studying this stuff. You can sort of see that early with the complaints about all the different names for body parts. I get the feeling the main character didn't really want to study medicine but was forced to which could be interesting.
Apart from the potential of why this person is in medical school despite seemingly not enjoying this seems to be a normal more slice-of life story without a major plotline which is fine by me as I always feel the strength of these stories is not in the plot but the humor and interactions. That being said I see the potential for a good plot because of hints dropped this chapter.
Nailed it I say, it definitely feel like they are drunk because of how they jump from sex to cancer in an instant but not ridiculously drunk where they can't study. It feel like two students talking which is sometimes harder to nail down then you might think so well done on that. It makes for a good atmosphere as well.
| XxLoveMakesTheWorldGoRoundxX chapter 1 . 3/27/2015
Opening: I feel like you had a good start with the opening, it got us right into the voice of the character, and had us already know what they were like, however I feel like a med school student would genuienley want to know all the parts of the body and not complain about a relatively simple matter about that.
I feel like your description was really off and I didn't know who was talking to who, and what was talking and what were thoughts, and it went by too fast for me because one of the problems is that you didn't get us accustomed to who your character was so outside of the fact that he's our eyes of your story the reader doesn't know WHY we should care about the character outside of the fact that he complains a lot and is sarcastic.
I'd recommend you get a beta reader to help you smooth out the kinks!
| Cheddar-Graham chapter 1 . 3/18/2015
RG Depth review
Those two lines set the tone for the entire piece. First I thought, Ah, a sense of wonder. Then I got sarcasm, and it's consistently snarky despair after that. It's an interesting narrating voice for a character who's supposed to be a med student, who I'd imagined to be stuffy, prim and proper.
The more I read, I more I start to wonder, what kind of med student is this who hates studying so much? And before I know it, I'm drawn into the piece because I want to know more about the narrator. Based on the rest of the piece, I conclude that he/she is either just blind drunk or he/she never wanted to study medicine and is going to flunk for sure.
I think you got the drunk but not yet incoherent dialogue down pat. Not that I've done extensive research on that particular state. :P Still, it's believable - spastic changes of topic, but nothing completely undecipherable. It fits the general mood perfectly.
Plot / Enjoyment
I think it's pretty undeniable that there isn't much of a plot here. Just mild pre-exam drunken ranting. Still, it's entertaining enough and doesn't demand too much heavy thinking on underlying themes or other such things, unless one wants to, of course. Very likely I'd identify with it much more if I were a reluctant med student myself, but I did like the humourous undercurrent running through.
| Shampoo Suicide chapter 1 . 3/18/2015
Tone: I really loved the palpable frustration of this piece. It's clear from the beginning with the complaints about the different terminology used for the parts of the body and the way the narrator seems to be at a breaking point studying all this. The trouble pronouncing things and random distracted asides all contribute to this feeling.
Technique: I don't know that this is strictly technique, but I like the humorous aspects of this, and am classifying it as an employed technique because it helped establish the tone but also keep everything feeling light, like it wasn't exactly the end of the world that the narrator is going crazy from too much studying but that, in that moment, it felt intolerable. It makes it relatable in a way, like everyone has reached the breaking point trying to work on something and it feels like torture but grand scheme it's not so serious.
Plot: It's sort of loose and aimless, this piece, but I like it. I like that they're getting drunk and studying, it feels true to life. I like existing in the narrator's head for a little while he's resentfully, yet charmingly and humorously, doing all of this.
Dialogue: I really liked the conversation with the woman, if only for the joke about long telomeres ;). The dark humor of the cancer conversation really feels natural and true to what I've heard from other medical students and professionals I know. These conversations highlight the weirdness of being a med student I think, and how you're focused on learning all this minutiae that actually ISN'T trivial, or at least isn't supposed to be, and how that becomes the focus rather than that nebulous helping people goal you talked about to get in haha. So you drive yourself crazy studying and make jokes about sex and cancer to get by. I get it. I like it. Well done!
| Virtuella chapter 1 . 3/14/2015
I remember well when I was at uni how I felt sorry for the medical students, because while the rest of us engaged in deep intellectual debate or grappled with the secrets of the universe, they had to learn endless lists of terminology by heart. You have captured the frustrating, even soul-destroying aspect of this very well in this story. It is also a nice counterpoint to the common heroic stereotype of doctors.
The opening of the story works very well. The arbitrariness of language, the confusions about pronunciation, the hermetic quality of these technical terms to a person with no flair for languages comes across very strongly. A slight niggle: Latin uses the same script as English, so it is incorrect to speak of “transliteration.” Unless, of course, you deliberately used this to imply your narrator doesn’t know this.
Another aspect that is very realistic and well observed is how the characters obsess about cancer. I’ve seen that in real life as well, and it’s easy to see how overwhelming this issue would seem to young people entering a medical career.
The dialogue comes off as very authentic. It is casual, erratic and with a palpable tone of frustration.
My point of criticism would be that large sections of the story were rather confusing. I never worked out how many characters were in the room, who was who and who was speaking. A few speech tags here and there would come in useful.