Trying a tale based off of an SCP that I couldn't quite make work. It's right here, being the top one labeled 'Tale'. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.
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I would downvote. You use present tense. You have cliche'd characters. Your prose is dull and boring. It's too long for a simple story. There's no payout.
Better luck next time.
I'm disappointed in myself. Everything you say I did on purpose, and it's upsetting that that didn't come across.
I'd hoped the present tense would stylistically frame the past tense false memories. The cliche'd characters were meant to be explained as the infection and an act, respectively. And because the text runs a little long I didn't want to use too flowery a description in most of the text (this necessitated my stripped down, simple plodding style with this one. I'd also hoped that it would stand in contrast to the minimal indulgences I'd allowed myself in the false memory segments.)
And the lack of payout almost breaks my heart. I'd really hoped I'd found, if not the mark than at least the region of, the mark with this one.
PLEASE help me make this better, I really am attached to this one. Here's what I'm thinking as a fix for the second draft;
If I get to the meat of the story earlier on by cutting out a lot of the early chit chat from the Chief, flesh out some of the memories to make the contrast in styles more apparent and rewrite the epilogue to make the cliche's more self evident as not being true character traits, would this help? Or am I just going further down the wrong path?
Let me elaborate
1: Present tense is actually hard to read. It's like writing a story in second person. Incredibly annoying. It may be a stylistic choice, but it does not work.
2: I do not mean make it flowery. But as it is now, it feels boring. There's no context to the dialogue and it becomes lost. Have you read Orwell? Try to emulate his writing style; not flowery (purple), yet interesting.
3: Never write cliche'd characters on purpose. Have them fulfil archetypes, but not cliche's.
4: You can afford to strip this down to the barebones without losing anything. Just cut anything that doesn't contribute to the work. Once you have the skeleton, you can elaborate.
5: The payout is good, but for something shorter. The longer a work is, the better he payout has to be.