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What do you think of my 'short story'?

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    I don't aim to be a published author, but I do like writing whenever I feel like it. I would welcome your comments. Please be as brutal as possible.


    * It is set in early Victorian England.


    Dear Daniel,

    The clock has struck one and now it's past midnight. It is a windless and a cloudless night. The majestic moon radiates against the dark sky. Her warm rays filter through the mullioned glass windows of my bedchamber, granting me enough light to compose this letter. Bathsheer, the greyhound, rests at the corner of my bed, anxiously watching his master. Yet, my body and mind are in revolt against this serene atmosphere. My restless eyes keep reverting to the rusty iron gate of my abode, visible through the glass window in front of me. I am waiting for the appearance of a short but muscular figure, his hands hidden in the pockets of his overcoat, striding briskly through the sea of moonlight with an air of benign self-confidence. Yes, it is you my dear friend I desperately seek. Why haven’t you come yet? Doubts pierce my heart and I grow agitated with every passing moment. You can’t have forsaken me like others? But no, I mustn't think of it! I must place my faith in your goodness.


    My whole frame shakes like a dry leaf, so you must excuse my hurried scrawl. Since last night, my cough has worsened. It seems that the bloody lumps of my fading lungs are too impatient to exit their diseased owner. I drink a little wine to ease the pain and clear my throat - for the time the cough does get subdued, only to later attack me with greater ferocity. I am certain that the next attack will kill me. The angel of Death stands beside my bed with a malignant expression etched on his dark face, eager to take me in his arms at the slight nod of our Creator. I fool myself thinking that perhaps delirium has taken hold of me, yet there he stands with his wings unfolded and outstretched arms! My heart pounds in fear against the fragile ribcage, yet my eyes remain tearless. Bathsheer is restless again, now and then placing his paws on my shoulders to affectionately lick my haggard face, and then other times crouching near the window panes to utter a heart-piercing, elegiac howl.

    Poor chap! He senses his master’s approaching demise, but is helpless against its inevitability. After I am gone, I beg you to please take care of him.


    My woollen breeches are wet again. The warm urine prickles my thighs and seeps through the bed sheet, leaving a raw feeling of icy dampness. Illness has rendered me too exhausted to even get to my chamber-pot. I endeavour to think of something happy – a cheerful memory from a distant past. Happy? Ha! A squeaky sound like a laugh escapes my colourless lips. Grief and tragedy overshadow my mind. I feel like a man falling in a dark abyss, desperately flailing his arms to hold onto something substantial. Yet a flame of hope still burns vividly. Only if you were here with me! I wish to say few words to you, and to have the comfort of having my skeletal hand in your strong but gentle grasp.


    Oh Lord! Have some mercy on me. The clock has struck three. Large drops of blood coagulate on the surface of my lips. The angle of Death approaches slowly. His stench is suffocating. The moon suddenly disappears and pitch-black darkness envelops me. No sound comes out of my mouth. Bathsheer has his teeth on my sleeve cuff, pulling me towards him in great panic. The rusty iron gate finally creaks open and familiar sound of hurried footsteps echo against the quiet pavement. The chamber door opens. I hear someone calling my name. Bathsheer howls. The flame of hope is blown out. Blackness overtakes me. Death triumphs...

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    The first thing i noticed is that the person dies and continues writing this letter which is a rather difficult thing to do.

    It's apparent that you've tried to write it in a victorian style but it just seems to be lots of polysylabic and archaic words thrown in their to give it an air of culture.

    Also the imagery and metaphor is done well, but there's too much of it, you keep offering image after image and their is not enough time for each one to sink in. And with these images it fogs over what this letter is really saying: This persons dying, and they miss daniel. But most of the first paragraph is dedictated to the moon and the dog.

    However despite all of these things i did enjoy reading it.
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    (Original post by thirstysailor)
    The first thing i noticed is that the person dies and continues writing this letter which is a rather difficult thing to do.
    Haha. Yeah I did notice that. I actually carried it on until the person had observed his own funeral (hardly anybody came!). I obviously shouldn't have written it in a letter form.

    It's apparent that you've tried to write it in a victorian style but it just seems to be lots of polysylabic and archaic words thrown in their to give it an air of culture.
    Oh, I thought I actually did a pretty good job of it. Now that you mention it, it does seem quite unnatural.

    Also the imagery and metaphor is done well, but there's too much of it, you keep offering image after image and their is not enough time for each one to sink in. And with these images it fogs over what this letter is really saying: This persons dying, and they miss daniel. But most of the first paragraph is dedictated to the moon and the dog.
    I think when I wrote it, my main focus was on 'death'. This person is a terminally sick and lonely man on his deathbed, craving human company and assistance. I did introduce the possibility of his being in delirium. Perhaps Daniel could be considered his 'imaginary friend' which he creates to deal with his loneliness and pain? Or someone he once knew? :sly:


    However despite all of these things i did enjoy reading it.
    Thank you. I only write for myself, usually when I feel stressed. So I don’t think of any plot or even characters and just write whatever first comes into my mind. I am a Romantic at heart, so most of fiction I write tend to be very melodramatic, riddled with metaphors and depressing imagery. Anyway, it was good to know how someone else sees it.
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    (Original post by Ferrero Rocher)
    Haha. Yeah I did notice that. I actually carried it on until the person had observed his own funeral (hardly anybody came!). I obviously shouldn't have written it in a letter form.



    Oh, I thought I actually did a pretty good job of it. Now that you mention it, it does seem quite unnatural.



    I think when I wrote it, my main focus was on 'death'. This person is a terminally sick and lonely man on his deathbed, craving human company and assistance. I did introduce the possibility of his being in delirium. Perhaps Daniel could be considered his 'imaginary friend' which he creates to deal with his loneliness and pain? Or someone he once knew? :sly:




    Thank you. I only write for myself, usually when I feel stressed. So I don’t think of any plot or even characters and just write whatever first comes into my mind. I am a Romantic at heart, so most of fiction I write tend to be very melodramatic, riddled with metaphors and depressing imagery. Anyway, it was good to know how someone else sees it.
    When i write i'm much the same i don't really plan anything and just see what happens. Yeah with the metaphors and stuff it's more personal taste than anything, it's just the sort of books i have don't really have as liberal use of language, so it's just my personal taste.

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