bikerjob recent comments

written 1139 days ago

I like the ‘voice’ you have going here. Your MC is not righteous - make no mistakes - hero of too many things I’ve read here. He ‘sounds’ like a man who just got out of prison.

Seven years – only mention ‘7’ once – it’s enough

- conceal any kind of weapon – v.good

And Lisa Green opened her blouse for me.
And Lisa Green opened her blouse.

- again – too many ‘before I went to prison’ – ‘technology has advanced in seven years’ – Something I haven’t had in seven years’ – STOP - we get it.

End of Ch 2 – nothing much has happened – he’d had a shower and a wank – this is drifting almost to a standstill – I feel you need to make something happen before now or a reader will lose interest.

End of Ch 3 – again – he’s had a shag but the ‘story’ hasn’t gone anywhere.

The writing is good but the ‘scenes’ are overlong.

I hope this helps – best of luck.

Calm Stewart
(The Strathbungo Cellists)
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written 1139 days ago

This rolls along – I sometimes had to stop and think what you meant - a tad wordy here and there... eg’s

A town with a name like that had no identity – Nowhere or Halfway ? - anyway – what is a town’s identity ?

You over use ‘just – still – such - seem’ – a word used to force the reader to get it.

...which we had just left ina hurry
...which we’d left in a hurry
Might as well just call it Nowhere.
Might as well call it Nowhere

Still, that’s what made it such a good place for a quiet rendezvous.
That’s what made it a good place for a quiet rendezvous.
A good place for a rendezvous.

A better place for a ‘quiet’ rendezvous – a big city – strangers stand out in a small place

Wiping a small waterfall.... – you start this para in ‘real time’ – then tell the reader what the future is... – doesn’t work for me.

Tony was a tall black guy, built like a bad dream. He seemed to avoid speaking when at all possible.
Tony, a tall black guy built like a bad dream, didn’t say much.
Travis, a skinny white prick, never shut up.

My intention here to highlight the opening... – it’s what an Agent/Publisher sees first – this is full of holes which can be filled by cutting the word count – make the point then get out – cut the clutter – stop using 12 words when 6 will do – cut ‘just – still – such – seem – that - had’.

There is a good story hidden here somewhere.

I hope this helps, best of luck.

(The Strathbungo Cellists)
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written 1140 days ago

The opening is important – the reason someone will read on – there are a few flaws with this ...

The two sisters were in bloom and flaunting themselves, both moons – they were called ‘moon’ – if you mean breasts – 4 moons – is this fantasy and are we on another planet – not sure ???

Now – we have – Phen – Fomar – the huge man & Tokkan – four characters have been added to the two sisters and we’re only in the second paragraph ??

Give the reader a break – you know the story and the characters – we know nothing. Six characters in six lines – come on – set the scene – let the reader know what the situation is – who the MAIN character is – where this is – from the names I assumed far east – from the first line of dialogue - middle England.

Sorry – the start has to grab the reader – we can’t wait for the ‘wonderful’ story to unfold.
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written 1140 days ago

- not a big fan of ‘that & had & has’... ruins the

It really is remarkable that it has been about for so long...
It really is remarkable, it’s been about for so long...

...who think that the absolute purpose
...who think the absolute purpose

Every single person – thought you meant ‘single’ people

...without doing at least a bit of research first – too wordy the impact of the punchline is lost
...without doing a bit of research first


People start having sex and all of a sudden it’s all drama and consequences
People start having sex and right away it’s all drama and consequences

...friends of mine being turned into
...friends of mine turning into

...astonishing to witness
...astonishing. – you’ve already ‘told’ the reader ‘ Watching...’

Sometimes ‘it is’ it is & other times ‘it’s’ it’s – pick one and use it throughout – I prefer ‘it’s’ – this is a monologue – you want the reader to believe you are literally ‘telling’ them the story – write is as you would ‘say it – I’ve – there’s – no one in Glasgow ever says ‘it is’ or “I have”

...why is it that so many people fall apart after participating in it. – lost your ‘voice’ here – how would you ‘say’ this to a pal ???
...why is it so many people fall apart after doing it.

The best thing about your writing is the ‘voice’ – it’s intimate – straightforward & TRUE – keep it natural – the odd clumsy sentence – rips the reader away – the ‘line; has been ‘written’ – the reader has ost the ‘conversation’ they were having with you.

Hope this helps.

A few lines on The Strathbungo Cellists would be nice.

All the best.
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written 1142 days ago

I’m a fan of – it’s – not - it is – there’s – not – there is. You start this with ‘I’ve’ then drift... – pick one method then stick with it – it’s – it’s how people ‘speak’.

Your opening paragraph... 2 x all day – 4 x day(s) – & the reader is given the same information twice.

Oh My God! Imagine if your job was to listen to head cases like me. I’ve been with me every day for fifty-two years, it’s exhausting. When I need to get away, there’s nowhere to turn. If you happen to have me thrust upon you, you’d want to kill yourself. Poor bloke.

I hope you get what I mean... make every word earn its place in a sentence.

Stumbled over the odd word missing – nothing a good read thru won’t catch.

The take on ‘Ode to melancholy’ is brilliant.

When you discuss ‘sex’ – you get your ‘voice’ – the first two chapters are good but, not very original, read it all many times.

This is sharp, erudite and funny – the pace is unrelenting and this is the biggest problem for me. This is not a book for the fireside – more something to read on the train into work where you can catch a breath when you arrive at Glasgow Central.

I’ll come back to it.
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written 1143 days ago

Max Lovely's still a mystery. By the end of the first chapter I'd like to know a bit more about him - apart from the fact he helps an old neighbour, wasn't young and wore un-ironed shirts.

His client's husband 'appeared' at her 5th floor window ??? - then nothing - this thread to your story is left 'up in the air' - dreaful pun but why not leave the client thread at 'not sure about the husband though...' -

There's tad too much detail - 'driveway' appears too regularly - it's as if you, the writer, are 'viewing' your story like a film and are 'telling' the reader what you see - we don't need to know Lovely's exact whereabouts all the time...

It's rear porch light was barely visible, twinkling through the shifting leaves' - why not - 'It's rear porch light twinkled through the leaves.'

Reality - it was dark - how did Lovely know the gloves were black & leather - why not just gloves? - took this reader right out of the story.

Returning to his car for a flashlight - doesn't ring true - why ? the prowler would be long gone.

This opening chapter runs along quite well - cut the clutter - the reader doesn't need to know everything - give more of 'who' Lovely is - and - if its dark...???

You're not doing anything I've not done - and still do. Every edit, I cut the word count.

Best of luck.

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