Book Jacket

 

rank 790
word count 11087
date submitted 07.11.2010
date updated 02.03.2014
genres: Fiction, Literary Fiction, Biograph...
classification: moderate
incomplete

Of Vice and Men

Daniel Ross

It is never enough to be given forgiveness, it must be earned.

 

Daniel Ross has made a lot of choices in his life, but the one he must now make is the hardest he will ever face.


From a successful corporate executive to a homeless drug addict in less than a year, Daniel lost everything he held dear in the pursuit of his ambitions. A decision that forever haunts him. Spurning the people who cared about him in his life there was nothing he wouldn't do to get that next high.


That was until one man wouldn't stop believing he could be something better. Given a fresh start, Daniel's attempts to make amends for his sins lead him down a violent path of revenge against those who took advantage of his addiction.


The crossroads he now sits at is the final step to his redemption. In an effort to justify what he must do he has decided to tell his story so that the truth and reasons behind his actions will be forever known.

(Only first four chapters posted but book is 85% complete at approximately 88,000 words)

 
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tags

addiction, choices, drugs, fictional biography, first person narrative, redemption

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82 comments

 

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amadeusbach wrote 1120 days ago

I like this. If the rest of the book is this well written, it deserves publishing. Consider yourself backed.

nneetz wrote 1133 days ago

I started reading at work....what a mistake, I can't stop!! I will write when I finish so far I'm through chapt two and love it! Great story!

God bless you and the work of your hands.
Nicole
Pocketful of Hope

midlifecrisis wrote 1135 days ago

I looked through this thinking not another 'how I battled against' books which generally don't make the best reads this subject is well covered too and not one I can relate, but this was different your descptions were very good, made me feel I was in the places you describe and it was an easy read which is important with this subject, you didn't fall into the trap of being a sermon or a lecture about he evils of drugs too, so well done, would like to read more
Duncan

Fontaine wrote 1179 days ago

I only intended to read the very beginning and read the lot at one sitting. Could not put it down.
I was a bit uneasy at first with the first chapter where you have a sort of prologue saying what the story is about. I kept thinking that your book was going to start after the events you were describing and I thought 'Oh, I wanted to read THAT story not just what happened after.' So your intro worked as I was pleased to find I had been mistaken and the book starts at the beginning. Hope all that makes sense,
I like your style very much. I sense a lot of anger in there as well as regret but your MC/you does/do not duck anything and takes responsibility. Quite heart rending in places. I wish you well with this book. I think the subject is an important one and you have written it from a different angle. On my WL and will back it in February.
Thanks for a good read.
Best wishes,
Fontaine
(Legacy).

Venenum wrote 997 days ago

Of Vice and Men Pt. 1 is a pageful read. The words just leap out, drawing the reader in. For those that haven’t been in such a situation, you have put them in with the Daniel, making the subject convincing and relatable. This is an unavoidable issue, one you don’t read about too much in such beautiful narration. To me it seems more of a confession, than anything. And that is what makes this such a great book.

JC Whitfield-A Proclamation of Death

Rose Princess Kaysielynn wrote 1049 days ago

I found this to be an intriguing story, but it was a bit hard for me to get into. It's very dark, which is not something I usually have a problem with and which is quite appropriate for the subject matter, but I noticed quite a few sentence fragments, some punctuation issues, and a few odd turns of phrase that sort of pulled me out of the story. It's well-written, but I feel it could use a good once-over for grammatical and spelling errors in particular to make it even better. Good luck!

JamesRevoir wrote 1068 days ago

Absolutely captivating!

Maria Herring wrote 1096 days ago

Hi Daniel,

I've only read the first couple of chapters, but it's very potent. Your description of the dark underworld of drugs has a kind of fantastical element that I found morbidly fascinating...!

Good luck with this, Maria.

Norton Stone wrote 1115 days ago

CH4. Thanks Daniel for a good read. I've now read as much as you've given us. The relentless nature of the confession is absorbing but a little voice in my ear is saying "Is there a prospect this is going to change direction anytime soon?" The challenge is not so much in the writing, which you do very well, but giving this confession an identifying back story which has guilt free moments of hedonism that we can then measure against the consequences. Perhaps this is where you are going to take us? A book I hope to read soon is Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. It sits on my real bookshelf at home and is the sort of work that would compete for my attention with a work like yours. I daresay a publisher will ask you at some point what makes this confession more compelling than an autbiography by Charlie Sheen or Robert Downey Junior etc? I belive you have a definite writing voice, I suppose my question is what makes Daniels story different?

silvachilla wrote 1119 days ago

Hi Daniel

I like this.

Obviously it's autobiographical, so you're recalling all your memories and feelings as you write. I don't know if you've edited it much since you wrote it, but, and this is without souding horrible, it felt a bit like you'd had a real frenzy putting your thougts on paper which is probably therapeutic but was quite hard to read through. For example, for me, the prologue went on a bit too long. The first paragraph totally hooked me in, but I was reading it and thinking, OK, you were an addict, what next? It was when you started talking about Anne and leaving someone in a pool of their own blood that this story really got me going. I would suggest shortening it a bit, you could always put the rest in a bit later? Everything you wrote was valid, it just felt a bit repetitive at times.

I liked the description of family life and your upbringing, and the pressure of your colleagues. It was something I could visualise very clearly and I know it happens all the time, but I would have liked to have heard more about how that first hit actually made you feel. What did you imagine it might feel like before you tried it, what was the reality like. What did it taste like? What was the reaction of your colleagues (if you noticed)? Were they surprised that you did it? You seemed pretty straight laced up to that point.

I would like to read more, because at this point I can't connect with how the drugs came to affect your life in such a profound way, how it instigated your downfall. Although you described these things in the prologue, I want to see it unfold in front of my eyes.

I think this has real potential for sure, and I also think you're brave for putting it all out there.

PLEASE don't take this as a bad review. If a book sucks I message instead of commenting. I just think you have such a story to tell, and it seems like the kind of thing HC likes, I'd like to see a bit more of it and feel like I can really connect with it.

Have starred etc, please let me know when there's some more. I will back shortly, because as I said at the beginning, I do like it.

Silva

zaboo the great wrote 1119 days ago

You deffinitely have potential with this one, with a little refinement. You have an intriguing way of captivating the reader right from the beginning - tell enough to get them interested, yet not enough for them to know all the answers. It is noticeably written from the heart, with intent, and anyone could appreciate reading the whole story.
Spread the word, many will listen.

Norton Stone wrote 1119 days ago

I am not terribly good on authors but this has a style remiscent of the late 19th early 20th century. I have mentioned Daniel Defoe who predates that but I am also thinking of characters like Phileas Fogg and those other intrepid explorers who presented their voyages of discovery in the first person in a linear diarised form. Ch4 tomorrow. Good work and you are keeping me interested.

amadeusbach wrote 1120 days ago

I like this. If the rest of the book is this well written, it deserves publishing. Consider yourself backed.

Dahliascrolls wrote 1120 days ago

Learn from me and Live differently! Great first chapter.
I Love it so far and will continue reading. With just a few paragraphs I am attached and vested in "your" welfare!
I am putting your book on my shelf!

Dahlia

Norton Stone wrote 1120 days ago

Short paragraphs of an almost equal length are very apparent in CH2. It lacks a narrative flow which isn't necessarily bad in a fiction (Which you have classified this as) but to keep that up for the entire book will be difficult for the reader. You are almost sermonising and I think it may be too early for you to start revealing your guilt. (I am assuming this is embellished Autobiograhy as fiction) Tell us what you did! Guilt and regret can come later.

angela fuller wrote 1120 days ago

Hi, read your first 3 chapters. I'm sure that writing it was a cathartic experience that helped exorcise your demons. Well done. Mac

Jessica L Degarmo wrote 1121 days ago

Daniel, I think chapter 1 reads better now. It seems slightly more human, although the language is still flowery and a little reminiscent of 1800s and early 1900s writing when big words and complex sentences were the norm. Not that it's a bad thing. I think that the tone is definitely literary and you will probably attract a more scholarly audience with it.
The tone I think is the other thing that has changed, at least for me. It has a better feel to it now. I'm not entirely sure why, unless it has something to do with your commas and shorter sentences? But whatever it is, the character is more believable now and this feels like something I would want to continue reading, if only to find out why he allowed a hated person from his past near him, and what horrible crimes he committed and why.

FeSladen wrote 1121 days ago

I have read enough of your book 'Of Vice and Men' now to know that there is some brilliant writing going on here. It is an absorbing read, though there were a few issues with it that stood out for me:

This is obviously autobiographical and one of the main dangers there is going off on a tangent and getting episodic. You have a tendency to jump from place to place, reeling the reader back and forth in time, in the space of a few sentences.
If it is an 'autobiography', then you should probably add it to your list of genres (You've got 'biography' up there at the moment.)

The poetic writing you've used is fantastic and you draw on some wonderful metaphors. I do feel, however, that at times your story is getting lost in these lengthy moments of reflection. Your story is an important one to tell because it is relevant so many people who have been or are in similar situations. Don't lose your message in the text. In the same way, I don't think your prologue is entirely necessary, because much of what you say in it is repeated in so many words in the rest of the book. I would suggest a) blending your prologue into the rest of the story(which you're pretty much doing already, or b) keep the prologue, but make that the home for your contemplation and just let the story flow through the chapters. I agree with what another reader said in their comment: it doesn't read like a commercial book. It is moving and thought-provoking, but even for an autobiography, it is rather self-indulgent and lacks a vital structure.

A few misplaced commas here and there, but that's not really criticism, just proof-reading.
Typo
Part 2, para.14 - just a repeated word 'on'

I hope this all makes sense. No matter what the criticism, you are an extremely talented and promising writer and I am backing this book for that reason.

All the best
Fe

Weaver Reads wrote 1121 days ago

I would love the favor back. You are now on my watchlist, which means you will be on my bookshelf. Thanks, and have a great day! :)

Norton Stone wrote 1121 days ago

There is an ache of regret in your prose that reminds me of Daniel Defoe and his book Robinson Crusoe. I'll read Ch2. Good start.

ALPACAJUNCTION wrote 1122 days ago

Very interesting story line. Well written. Kept my interest. Shelved.

Wilma1 wrote 1122 days ago

A thought provoker. A magnifying glass on society and life. I recognised some of your viewpoints as my own


Sue Mackender

Knowing Liam Riley

markwoodburn wrote 1125 days ago

I read this through from start to finish. The first chapter read like early Ellroy and left me wondering whether this was in fact fiction.
Your CV states this is truth but in the style it is written I can't see it being commercial enough to publish unless you fictionalised it into a "Wall Street" or "Devils Advocate" style morality play. That might be the road you have to go down.
You have a writing talent. No doubt. Words, sentences, paragraphs, pages flowed easily. At times though I found too much self -pity and repeatedly going over what you had "lost." Better to leave the reader with a general outline then crash into what the reader really wants: to know WHY.
It sounds confessional too, as if you are working through therapy. A way of releasing something. I know what that is like, and sympathise, though my circumstances do not compare with yours.
I think you have to decide what you want. Would it be better to change styles to clear fiction where you will have to find a "gimmick" that separates it from the usual "Faustian" tragedies in order to give it an edge against the rest in the market place or continue in the confessional. Only you will know. I hope you find peace from your turmoil through writing. Starred, Regards, Mark

Alison O'Connor wrote 1127 days ago

Daniel,
I love reading stories of that represent the nature of humans on all levels. It seems so many people use and abuse drugs on a regular basis. Some cope, function and live with it everyday never to live a life apart from it. Others, like yourself reach a bottom and make something positive from a situation that was the lowest of who they were. I think your honest testimonial of pursuit to success and then self sabotage is helpful to others on so many different levels. Not everyone has access to cocaine, but there are other "drugs" and addictions we fall to. Your experience is helpful for others to hear and learn from no matter our place in life.

I am curious to read more and find out how things do turn around for you after "the beginning of the end." I did not feel a close connection in your writing to Anne, but I also wonder how her life was affected by your choices. She could have gone down this road with you or went her own way.

Good luck to you and most importantly congratulations on pulling yourself through and then taking time to help others too. I understand why you needed to write. I did the same as well in a situation separate from yours.
-Alison
Mackenzie Mae and the Other Side of the Rainbow.

2004carlt wrote 1127 days ago

I'm putting you up for a bit as I feel your story may reveal a different (and unique) perspective on a problem that's inherent in society and which needs to be addressed. Good luck.

TMNAGARAJAN wrote 1127 days ago

OF VICE and MEN

Confessional.

I am keen to hear more.

TMN
"NEVER LOSE..."

jlbwye wrote 1129 days ago

Daniel.
Your confession in the Prologue is a serious, compelling read.

Ch.2 There is alot of "telling" - the authorial voice - in your story, and although I understand the need for this, I feel it would flow better for the reader if you drew us more often into your personality, through action and dialogue.
'As much as I didnt want to admit it...' could become, 'Perhaps she was right, but...'
Maybe telling your story in the simple past tense, instead of all those "had"s would help. Then you wouldnt have such convoluted sentences as: 'From the person I turned out to be, you would have never been able to guess I had a very principled upbringing.'

Were those conversations with your mother really the way you spoke to each other? Although you get the message across with great truth and clarity: 'It is the people we surround ourselves with and the choices we make that is the sum of our character.' Sounds like philosophising rather than everyday chatter with a youngster. But perhaps that was the mistake your parents made.

Yours is an important story, and I look forward to reading on. Rated.
Jane (Breath of Africa).

Ember Rose wrote 1130 days ago

I find this to be a very refreshing an original change of pace from the usual pattern of books within this field. Your presentation was very original, confusing your reader with which is the backstory, and which is happening as the book proggresses is creative, original, and a great way to keep my attention. (Hopefully that makes sense.)
As for constructive criticism, I have non. There was nothing that seemed out of place, or not well polished in this work of art.
Best of luck with it, and God bless,
Ember

Vin Mariani wrote 1130 days ago

Apologies mate, not my cup of tea.

If you're going to do this kind of thing, you need to find a way more interesting approach - and language...'I was living an endless nightmare,,,' a day I will never forget...' 'she encompassed what it meant to be beautiful in every sense of the word'..'a hell on earth'....'a window into my soul..' Stone-dead cliches all. You proselytise and leave nothing for the imagination. Your story is dead before it starts. Confessionals/ mock-confessionals & misery/ rehab memoirs are the bane of publishing as far as I'm concerned and there are too many on this site, which unfortunately is why they do so well. Anyway countless millions of people use drugs, love them and have no problems at all: i think that's interesting and heartening. Why not write about the asinine War on Drugs - that's what's doing the real damage. That's a book the world needs.

Sorry. But you did ask me to have a look.

Regards

V.M

rosemariemeleady wrote 1131 days ago

I love your prologue it pulled me in and your chapters so far are strong. You have a strong voice and you are a writer. What I mean by that is that everyone believes they have book inside them and their life experience is worth paper space - it is if it is written well and you write well. I have worked with homelessness and addicts in the past and with your strong voice and style of writing you can definately deliver the message home that these things can happen to well educated and 'ordinary' people. Best of luck with it.

Andrew Keeton wrote 1131 days ago

Youre pitch is completely right as forgiveness must be earned. Your detail of Daniel makes him seems so realistic ss this is an incredible story. You have a good story line and I wish it could keep going. I'm glad that you are working hard to improve yourself and you are a talented writer. Your prologue is a great lead up to the story

Red2u wrote 1132 days ago

have backed and gave it a 5 star rating...good luck!

Brian Bandell wrote 1132 days ago

I like chapters 1 and 2. It's interesting that your childhood went pretty well yet you still got into trouble and how you deal with the impact on your family. All the drama in chapter 2 makes this a compelling read.

I'm not crazy about the prologue. I understand what you were trying to say, but it was too long-winded. Beware of redundancy. Sometimes you have sentences that say the same thing in different ways. Once is enough. Look for a way to get your point across in a more simple and direct way. Also specify how you were rich and famous. It's not clear.

This is a good effort and I'll back it.

Brian
Mute

Joel Juedes wrote 1133 days ago

Emotional, interesting and realistic all at the same time. Your voice comes out well and the pacing is good. However, I think you could make a few more connections between all the events. Make your life read more like a story (ch.2 on) and less like a conglomerate of memories. Find the main theme and point back to it with everything that happens--your forgiveness pitch line is good. Also, keep an eye on your tenses. You say "when I was twelve years old I would break my arm" and "she would wait for me for four hours". "broke" and "waited" feel more present. I do like how you advance quickly through your life, introducing each series with a quote. It's well balanced so far and keeps getting better. I can't wait to see where it goes.

Joel Juedes- Purple Eyes

nneetz wrote 1133 days ago

I started reading at work....what a mistake, I can't stop!! I will write when I finish so far I'm through chapt two and love it! Great story!

God bless you and the work of your hands.
Nicole
Pocketful of Hope

kendra ann ziems wrote 1133 days ago

i looked at your story per your request and although it's not my usual read i will say that you are a talented writer; and i enjoyed your honest and very emotion packed writing. could you please take a peek at my story as well i wonder and give me some feedback. i added to watchlist.

laurenbabb wrote 1133 days ago

this is an incredibly moving, detailed account of the shifting balance of events and feelings which can lead to a mans downfall. i had to stop reading it because i was crying too much. i understand what its like to want to take back things you've done, and the knowledge that this wish will remain forever unfulfilled. however, im full of hope for you, knowing that you've broken your destructive pattern and you're on your way to self-realization.


13th paragraph, chapter one- rather than saying ways AND footsteps, try just footsteps. the sentence will be stronger. 15th paragraph- 'managed' should be 'manage'. 17th paragraph- 'forsaken' should be 'forsook'. Also, watch the punctuation, especially inside the dialogue sections, but also just in general. You tend to have run-on sentences, which can be avoided by reading aloud to yourself as you edit, and noticing where commas and full stops belong. chapter two, the section on suburbia and troubled metropolises, it should say, 'choked out of a city', rather than 'that' city. in the next line you might want to consider changing 'this city' to 'a city', because you are speaking in general terms. Also, in a book with a straightforward writing style like this one, sentences starting with 'and' should be avoided. In the 3rd last paragraph of chapter 2, you might want to consider reorganizing the second last sentence, it might say, 'Completely unaffected, I often found myself telling those tormented souls who harassed me as I left the office to "screw off", that is, if I didn't ignore them completely." As the sentence stands you have a problem because of some tense-switching and no pronoun at the beginning to indicate that the sentence is about you. In the interview section, it should say, 'my future boss, James Whitton' not 'and my future boss, James Whitton', the and suggests the presence of another person.

Basically, you have some grammar and organization errors throughout, which you should go over, they're all minor, but clearing them up could help you get closer to publishing. The key positive thing for you is that you have a powerful story, and that makes this book worthwhile. It has elements which will move people in a profound way.

laurenbabb wrote 1133 days ago

this is an incredibly moving, detailed account of the shifting balance of events and feelings which can lead to a mans downfall. i had to stop reading it because i was crying too much. i understand what its like to want to take back things you've done, and the knowledge that this wish will remain forever unfulfilled. however, im full of hope for you, knowing that you've broken your destructive pattern and you're on your way to self-realization.


13th paragraph, chapter one- rather than saying ways AND footsteps, try just footsteps. the sentence will be stronger. 15th paragraph- 'managed' should be 'manage'. 17th paragraph- 'forsaken' should be 'forsook'. Also, watch the punctuation, especially inside the dialogue sections, but also just in general. You tend to have run-on sentences, which can be avoided by reading aloud to yourself as you edit, and noticing where commas and full stops belong. chapter two, the section on suburbia and troubled metropolises, it should say, 'choked out of a city', rather than 'that' city. in the next line you might want to consider changing 'this city' to 'a city', because you are speaking in general terms. Also, in a book with a straightforward writing style like this one, sentences starting with 'and' should be avoided. In the 3rd last paragraph of chapter 2, you might want to consider reorganizing the second last sentence, it might say, 'Completely unaffected, I often found myself telling those tormented souls who harassed me as I left the office to "screw off", that is, if I didn't ignore them completely." As the sentence stands you have a problem because of some tense-switching and no pronoun at the beginning to indicate that the sentence is about you. In the interview section, it should say, 'my future boss, James Whitton' not 'and my future boss, James Whitton', the and suggests the presence of another person.

Basically, you have some grammar and organization errors throughout, which you should go over, they're all minor, but clearing them up could help you get closer to publishing. The key positive thing for you is that you have a powerful story, and that makes this book worthwhile. It has elements which will move people in a profound way.

2004carlt wrote 1133 days ago

Read some of the first chapter. It's interesting but it needs work. The writing is generally flat with a few highlights, such as 'Circling like vultures they feasted on the carcasses of the broken and desolate,......' Really liked that bit. You have passion when you talk about the drug sellers but not when you write about yourself. It's like a hollow drum with a few gems rattling around inside.

Mooderino wrote 1133 days ago

The prologue is quite vague. You make lots of claims about the dangers of drugs and the extremes they pushed you to, but it's all very generalised and uses a lot of clichés. When I was young I thought I was in invincible. I always learn lessons the hard way. I was living an endless nightmare I couldn't escape. I quickly learned who my true friends were.

Even though you are just setting the scene for the story proper, what it actually reads like is a lot of hyperbole. The story should speak for itself, trying to sell it upfront just makes you seem insecure in your writing. I would suggest that if you do want you have a prologue that it should be about something specific, not an overview or summary.

The writing is generally clear and easy to read although sometimes it gets a little convoluted. For example:
“Losing her took any chance I would ever have, to just plain and simply talk to the person, who through all my trials and tribulations had tried her best to believe in me.”
read a little stilted. It also isn't clear who you talking about, wife, mother, daughter. Even though you are later going to go into more depth I don't think being vague here does you any favours.

I found the dialogue a little overly formal at times. Characters say exactly what they mean in a very precise way that doesn't feel very natural. It becomes perfunctory and feels written rather than spoken.

You constantly refer to future events with comments like ‘this is when it started’ and ‘little did I know’ that spoil the flow of the narrative. Because you already know the story and what impact events have, they become less important for you in terms of when they are revealed and when they are not. For me as a reader, having the narrative jump around and the author keep interjecting his views is frustrating to read. It ends up feeling rushed as you try to get your old self, your new self, and all the events in between into a single paragraph. The thing to focus on are the events as they happened without commentary. Showing a scene where the mother warns and threatens a child to stop riding his bike dangerously, then showing the child do a ridiculous stunt and hurt himself, and the mother not punishing him but instead taking great care of him, is all you need to show the relationship between them. You don't need to set it up in any way and you don't need to explain it afterwards in any way. To do so is not only redundant, it's irritating.

You do the same thing when you have him lose the promotion to Derek. You over-explain every aspect of that scene and the stuff with James when is quite clear what's going on. Similarly the start of the breakdown of his relationship doesn't need quite so many footnotes and addendums.

It reads like you are too concerned about the implications of what you're saying and you end up skipping over the details and specifics, which are the important parts, to get to your closing arguments. Drawing too many conclusions for the reader lessens the impact. You keep interrupting the narrative to tell the reader how much you regret your actions and how wrong you were. In my opinion (FWIW) you, the author, need to take a step back to allow you, the character, to take centre stage. Otherwise it's going to end up sounding like a lecture or sermon. Clearly you have a wealth of experience and examples of a life gone wrong. Going through them gave you the insights and understanding you now possess. In order to share that, I think you need to concentrate on the things that happened as they happened and allow the reader to reach their own conclusions rather than trying to spoonfeed them yours, which is how it felt at times.

regards
mood

Kathleen Lee wrote 1133 days ago

Well written and well paced, this cautionary tale is far superior to the majority of 'misery fiction' to be found on this site. Daniel Ross develops social themes around the corrupting influence of the city and all its temptations in a way that is reminiscent of Dickens. This confessional has a strong sense of who the narator is becoming. A few more carefully drawn characters would improve the experience for the reader.

yellowdog wrote 1134 days ago

Hi Daniel,

I thought this was extremely well written. I was a bit unsure how to approach the book, but read on. It is a testament of sorts, a story of redemption told in an honest and revealing way. I appreciateed that you have extended the personal narrative to encompass the wider effects of addiction. Also by the insights into childhood development you have tried to analyse what went wrong, and in doing so revealed that we are all open to the spectre of addiction. The narrative tracks a path to apparent dissolution yet that has not occurred so far, all the indicators are there.

It is a sad story, and like you I hope it aids someone, perhaps by saying `you are not alone'.

All the best with this work. I'll put it on my WL for now.

Brian

JohannaQuille wrote 1134 days ago

Daniel, I've read chaps. 1 & 2. It's just not doing it for me. Although the writing insists you have changed, it's still a very selfish perspective that is coming through. Part of that may be that there are no objective events depicted. For example, when you and your mom were in disagreement of you getting ahead by treading on others, what specifics were the disagreement about? How were you rising up the corporate ladder by treading on others? Is there something you could describe that would help the reader to make their own judgement as to how atrocious your choices were? Maybe that comes later and I just didn't make it far enough.

I may not be the reviewer you want because the impression I get as I read is of the shallow, thoughtless jocks I went to school with. Very early in my life I sought depth. Maybe that has prevented me from experiencing anything that would help me relate to you. Maybe it's simply that my imagination is not big enough. Maybe I am simply not your audience.

I am sorry for the pain that every addict has felt and the pain that they have brought upon their loved ones. Maybe I simply do not have the courage to contemplate all that pain, knowing that I have no clue how to help anyone.

Best wishes, but this is simply not my genre.

Johanna

CMTStibbe wrote 1134 days ago

Excellent title―excellent pitch. This is a book worthy of respect. It is poetically endowed and visually stirring. ‘When I was young I used to think I was invincible.’ This reminds me of a fortress, impenetrable and without the possibility of attack. But a fortress is not a fragile boy. The misery of substance dependence is well described in this book. The prologue alone is a poisonous reminder of how quickly a body―full of promise―can diminish. A casualty of war in this city of devils, (superb imagery by the way) you described the struggle like a drowning, and the reader can sense Daniel’s panic. Having scorned the message, he is now gasping. This is no ordinary book. It is beautifully written and intricately layered. I sense that it is also a book of victory. Greatly starred and on w/l for future backing. Claire ~ Chasing Pharaohs.

briantodd wrote 1134 days ago

So glad that the narrator of this autobiography doesnt seem to be blaming an 'addictive personailty' or other pseudo-medicalised condition for the self inflicted destruction of his personal life outlined in this honest essay. He takes pains to underline his failure to take responsibility for his actions and follow a more moral life path. He recognises the fact that his loving hard working parents gave him the opportunity but he mocked their values, was ungrateful for their sacrifices and chased success and materialism only recognising the disaster he had made of his life when he arrived at a time of consequences, fell off the cliff and barely survived the fall. It isnt an original storyline - there are several similar tales on this site particularly on christian themes of redemption - but this one is well told and in the uploaded chapters available we have only reached the episode where he is first persuaded by his boss to snort some cocaine and then lets down his wife for the first time. He recognises immediately that perhaps there is a problem ahead and I will be interested to see this journal of his personal descent into a self inflicted hell. There are many easily corrected grammatical glitches (missing 'be' in the short pitch is the first of many) and tense confusions and as I read this I wondered if it wouldnt be better written as a semi-fictionalised novel where we are not aware of the ending by the end of the prologue. The weakness for me as it stands is the lack of characterisation of his beloved mother and wife, his persuasive and influential boss and others in this tale. I think it would work better if we knew more about their inner emotional lives beyond their interface with Daniel. We need more personal detail to empathise with gravity of Daniel's loss. We need to hear their pain and confusion as Daniel descent proceeds. At present he is our only witness and is also acting as judge and jury in his own case.

billy.mcbride wrote 1134 days ago

Dear Daniel,

Thank you for sharing your book. There is a character in Shakespeare's plays that sums up the experience of getting lost and being isolated from others, even though they are ready to help. This character who has this anxiety is Leontes from "The Winter's Tale," in act 5. I am always concerned about drug use in our communities, since it causes illusions for the abuser, just like dreams, drunkeness, and even sex.

Have a nice evening,

Billy M.

Red2u wrote 1134 days ago

wonderful... it intrigues me to want to read more..i have learned a few pointers as a novice, replace would should and could to action verbs helps to make your story pop Watch your story come to life ie. i wish upon instead of i would wish...slows the reader down
The paragraph The streets, 'place' repetetive..perhaps say The streets, the place I called home, were....merciless location /point replace one of the places...Not in my wildest dreams did i imagine that possible..Hope this helps have place it on my watchlist and will get back to it for further reading ...Good luck

rhine wrote 1134 days ago

Obviously from the heart. My only advice on the prologue is to pull the references to sitting here and the rain on the roof because they jerk us out of the narrative you worked so hard to establish.

Scott Rhine (Foundation for the Lost)

Evalanell wrote 1134 days ago

I don't comment much. My daughter told me about this book and I very much liked it. I hope you keep writing this. Its very good!

todd89 wrote 1135 days ago

There are different kinds of writers, good ones, excellent ones but I feel that some are actually born to be writers.
...And I think your one of them

My second cousin is an author as well but he's so heavy handed.
Another cousin is a writer but she writes short stories
I enjoyed what I read and I didn't see any faults, an excellent writer has fewer mistakes in their own projects but sometimes we can't help it.

Good luck

Richard Todd
The Madness of Avlon Klynn

Barbara Jurgensen wrote 1135 days ago

Daniel, Well-written. Convincing. It would be even more powerful if you were to condense the first chapter to 1/2 or even 1/3 of its present length. And if you could say it in three good-sized paragraphs it would win a gold medal. I'm giving it some stars and putting it on my watch list. Best wishes, Barbara Jurgensen If you have a few minutes could you take a look at my TO CATCH A SPECKLED TROUT and make comments? I would appreciate your take on it. Thanks.

midlifecrisis wrote 1135 days ago

I looked through this thinking not another 'how I battled against' books which generally don't make the best reads this subject is well covered too and not one I can relate, but this was different your descptions were very good, made me feel I was in the places you describe and it was an easy read which is important with this subject, you didn't fall into the trap of being a sermon or a lecture about he evils of drugs too, so well done, would like to read more
Duncan

Roy Belletete wrote 1135 days ago

Daniel, You write on a most necessary subject. Potential users need to here stories like this from people that actually went through it and not some model citizen who wouldn't even know what the drugs looked like. I had my own experiences with drugs and came close to losing everything but thank God, I turned right before my wife ended our marriage and since then have been able to live a pretty normal life. Your writing is hard hitting and effectual. It means even more to me because after three years of my brother being on the streets and doing drugs he died of an overdose at the age of 42. Thank you for writing this, it's much needed. I will shelf it as soon as a slot opens up... probably tomorrow. If you get a chance check out my book –In Search of a Memory--
Thanks for living so you can tell your story.
Roy Belletete
--In Search of a Memory--
http://www.authonomy.com/books/31898/in-search-of-a-memory/

Textual Ribbons wrote 1135 days ago

Daniel,

You write very beautifully and the narrator is so real to me that I wonder if you and he are the same. You have sucked me straight into the personality of your character and that is something that not very many books on authonomy have done that I have read through so far.

However, there are a few things that I wish to point out:

1)Your prologue (if that's what it was) is rather lengthy and repetitive. The words are beautiful, and yet that entire wall of text could really just be summed up in a few sentences. I feel like your narrator is sort of just rambling, trying to impress the importance of his story upon us, and yet I would rather hear the story itself than hear about why I should read it.

2) While I do love that your narrator gets me into the moment, in this case it's a bit of a bad thing. When I read a book I expect questions to be raised that catch my interest enough that I need to keep reading to find out what happens-- I need to wonder about his future. With your story I'm sort of just going along with what happens in your narrators life and reading it, but none of it really surprises me or raises burning questions that I need to keep reading to have answered.

My general impression is that of a man who tried to rise up in the world and was consumed by drug addiction, and I gather from the pitch that someone eventually turns him around. Sorry, but that's not exactly a story I've never heard of before. I feel that you need to make me understand why this particular man, who is going through what many others have gone through, is special enough that I need to read his tale. And I don't get that here.

That's not to say that someone else won't love and appreciate your work, and I wish you the best of luck, Daniel. If you could take the time to look at mine in return, I would be grateful.

Jasmine
To Catch a Falling Angel

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