Leave comment here

River permalink

This is a story about a writer trying to tell a story about writing. She gets advice from many different characters which causes her to constantly change the story until there is nothing left of it – it’s “gone”.

“Object became subject” is a clever play on words. “The delete key was the scalpel” felt a bit clunky, though.

Comedian permalink

I like the meta-meta vibes! It made my head hurt, but in a good way. I must admit I didn’t get it on the first couple of reads (again!).

I really liked “sense in absence” and “redeemed through revisions” :)

I wasn’t sure about using real people (us!) as characters though. It distracts from the story a bit, and it may be a bit too personal? I note my “character” didn’t get the story either!

Sparrow permalink

Parfles, this is quite fun but a little too gimmicky to really work? I also worry that it would not work outside of this forum – it requires too much familiarity with the characters to make sense to outsiders.

Having said that, it’s a fun exploration of the power of a writer and the destructive obsession with perfection rings very familiar. I don’t see the “delete key” sentence River mentions though – have you been editing this or am I missing something?

SystemFailure permalink

This is tight and very beautiful, almost like a poem. From the other’s comments I assume you have edited this a lot since they’ve read it – this is a pity, as the current version is very obscure and I would have liked to see the previous one. I thought we weren’t doing editing – please confirm?

Falcon permalink

Hi – story not showing up for me?

15 thoughts on “Leave comment here”

  1. Oo, er. This is a sneaky, evil-minded, hideously layered, madly self-referential piece of writing, with enough circularity to vanish recursively into itself. Postmodern satire ftw. Don’t think I didn’t notice the satire bits :>. As a statement about constructing text in the absence of text, it’s incredibly clever and seriously demands chewing, but it’s rather despairing – the common thread in all the comments is that the readers don’t get the point. If I were the Friendly Psychologist I’d be deconstructing this in terms of your negative feelings about criticism and how it’s more destructive than helpful.

    It is also completely impossible to comment on this fic without absolute self-consciousness, second-guessing and futile attempts to avoid sounding like any of the commenters you’ve represented above. Sigh.

    1. I’m glad this incarnation of you is more positive than the imaginary one! I was quite pleased with this but was really not sure if it was too gimmicky. All the comments are in fact the sorts of things I worry people may say about my fics all the time!

      I did not consciously pick up on everyone not getting the story, but you are right, it is there – Friendly Psychologist would have a field day with me :)

      1. I cannot tell a lie, I would have said something about it being “a bit gimmicky” if you hadn’t neatly pre-empted it. Being all meta about the gimmick also makes it rather less gimmicky ;>.

        Words to be suspicious of, as I use them: “clever”. Although I also really, really liked this fic, so don’t take it too seriously.

        1. p.s. am now absolutely fascinated, (a) by your facility with voice (you’ve nailed everyone, there’s no doubt at all who’s who, you are a fearfully observant person), and (b) why “Sparrow”? or, for that matter, “Falcon”? Both obscurely work, but I’d be interested to know what was going through your head.

          1. Thank you!

            The names come from the current nicks, and from past stories. For you, I thought the “feathers” story had sparrows (but now I check they are actually starlings!) and well, tiffin was too obvious, and sparrow felt right…

            Falcon is a character from Nantaliths “soup” story, and I guess it had slight anime-naming overtones which felt right.

            Comedian and SystemFailure are largely based on current nicks, and also on personality/profession.

            River was Rudy’s own name for his alter ego in the “stop” story, so that was the easiest!

          2. Yes, the anime-feel of “Falcon” felt really right to me, I hadn’t remembered the character name but I knew you meant Nantalith even before you told her you did. Comedian and SystemFailure are straightforward, and I had remembered River as Rudy’s alter ego. (Also, I think, it’s bizarrely reflective of his actual personality. Quietly flowing. Or something :). I suspect “Sparrow” felt right to me because I enjoy birds so much, and often write about them. Also, I’m pecky. Picky. Whatever.

            You could have called me “AfternoonTea”. Or “EarlGreyHot” :>.

            Nitpick: “rings very true” or “feels very familiar”, not “rings very familiar”. Other than that, I am forced to realise at second hand precisely how hesitantly I tend to frame my comments. I shall now spend the next fifteen years feeling acutely self-conscious about my turns of phrase.

          3. Ah, I am but a follower in the hallowed footsteps of the Stv, without whom you would not wince every time you say resonate.

            We are a team, an evil-minded team, we are.

  2. Awesome!
    Very, very, clever and twisty and circular enough to avoid being gimmicky, which it could easily have been.
    I think mentioning the gimmick in the story helps a lot. :)

    You’ve got the voices down very well and I envy your skill at this.
    The “not getting it” may be partially my fault, as is pointed out by “me” in the story.
    I got this one first time, though. Honest, guv!

    I completely agree with Doc’s “impossible to comment on” comment.
    Wait, do I sound like me, or Comedian? Or both? Argh!

    Aside: still Rudys run deep. 😉

    1. Oi, shouldn’t the plural of Rudy be Rudies? :-/ I have a strong need to put an apostrophe in there somewhere whenever I say it out aloud, but I’m sure that would be Wrong™.

  3. I enjoyed this. As others say, it is very difficult to comment without feeling self-conscious, but here goes. I think you conveyed the characters very well, with interesting connections to real people. I found a couple of the names a bit opaque – interesting to read the reasons in the comments.

    It took me a couple of reads to get the vibe, but as is often the case, that does not seem to be a bad thing.

  4. Really interesting idea and I think you made it work quiet well especially given the length limit.

    The awareness of the problems with the form (i.e. too gimmicky, too context-dependant) is really cool – but those problems do still distract.

    I’m not sure using the members of the group worked out that well. R’s distinctive précis was easy to associate with him and his style serves your narrative purpose extremely well. I’m not sure I would have recognised the rest without the related-nicks; a relation further confused by there only being 5 comments but 6 co-writers here.

    It would be very interesting to try the same idea without the known commenters.

  5. Ha! I laughed and giggled a lot when I read this. It kept me amused. I will not summarise the story, since my job here is done!

    It seemed to hit a lot of things that we’ve been thinking about while writing and reading these micfics — about personal bits that authors write about when the readers know them well enough to recognise them; and about the critting process in general: what to take from it and what to leave behind. I enjoyed how it tied it all together.

    I wouldn’t worry much about the gimmickyness: this was a particular story written for a particular audience, and from looking at the comments I think it went down very well (it definitely did with me).

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