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    Flashfiction: Regret

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    Forgiveness Man
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    default Flashfiction: Regret

    Post by Forgiveness Man on Sun Feb 06, 2011 10:43 am

    (It was doublespaced....) It sucks but hey, it's 30 minutes of basically freewriting. FORGIVENESS MAN

    Regret
    Josh felt the eyes peering on him as he took a seat in the church. He sat in the back pew, but still felt even more the center of attention than the body suited up in the casket at the foot of the altar.
    “You’d think they’d have better things to do than look at me all day.” He kept his voice whispered.
    The crowd did soon return their focus to the front. He’d expected to hear muttering and had prepared himself for that. He didn’t expect to hear what he heard, silence. Nobody was talking about him or what he did to that eleven-year-old in the casket. All he heard were piercing wails. He wanted to sink into his seat and disappear, but he owed it to his friend to stay here.
    “May I sit here?” An old woman stood in the aisle. She had a sad smile on her face.
    “Um? I guess so.” Josh scooted over to make room for her. “There are a few seats closer to him.”
    “Back here is good for me.” She rested her cane against the pew. “Plus, you are back here. Clearly it’s good enough for you too.”
    “I’m back here because I don’t want to be seen.” He looked down to hide a tear.
    “How did you know Cody?” She looked at him with compassion.
    Josh rubbed his face. “I don’t think I really she be using his funeral to talk about stuff like this.”
    “I’m just asking how you knew him.” She smiled.
    He sniffled and wiped aside a tear. “I took on a big brother program at school. Cody was the kid I was assigned. He was so spirited and full of life. I found myself wanting to hang out with him after school. I actually cared enough to help him with his homework. The last time I saw him, he said he wished I was his real big brother so I could be with him all the time.” A tear streamed down his face.
    The woman sighed as she stared ahead. “He did feel that way Josh. He talked about you all the time. He even asked his parents if you could live with him once.”
    Josh leaned back. “And how do you know that?”
    “I’m Cody’s grandmother. I was there when he talked about you. Heck, just from what he told me about you, I knew who you were the moment I saw you.” She put her arm around him.
    Josh pulled away. “Wait, if you know who I am, then you know what I did.”
    She placed her hand under his face. “Josh, it was an accident. You didn’t see him coming. You didn’t want to hurt him.”
    “I didn’t see him cause I wasn’t paying attention.” He felt his voice grew louder but, to his surprise, nobody turned around. “I was checking my stupid messages that I didn’t even like reading and in just one second, I killed the only real friend I ever had.” He looked up at the casket. “I can’t get the image of his body hitting the windshield out of my mind. He was so scared as he bled to death and even as he was dying, all he wanted was for me to hold his hand. He was a good person, unlike me.” He clenched a fist and tried to hold in his tears.
    “He was a good person; he was forgiving. He knew you didn’t mean to hurt him. I know you didn’t mean it, and so does everyone here. You made a mistake and you’re paying for it. There’s no need to hate you and make it worse.” She took his hand. “Come with me. Sit up front. You were his best friend and you shouldn’t be hiding back here.”
    He shook his head. “I can’t look at him.” He began to breathe heavily.
    She patted his back. “You have to, or you’ll never be able to let go.”
    He looked at her a moment before taking her hand and together, they stood up. The center aisle seemed so long. Josh gulped.
    “It’s okay Josh. It’s okay.” She took his hand tighter.
    “I can’t do this.”
    “You can.”
    Slowly, they took the steps towards the casket. Cody’s suited body came into clearer view. With his face cleaned up of blood, he looked so much more at peace than he had in the street that horrible afternoon.
    Josh felt his limbs giving out. He sank to the kneeler in front of the casket and cried. “I’m sorry.”
    The woman put her hand on Josh’s shoulder. “He knows, and he forgives you.”



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    default Re: Flashfiction: Regret

    Post by Supernova on Mon Feb 07, 2011 6:27 pm

    I like it.
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    default Re: Flashfiction: Regret

    Post by Forgiveness Man on Mon Feb 07, 2011 6:31 pm

    Someone didn't apparently, hence the negative vote. sad No constructive advice came with it either!

    Glad you like it though. big grin Can you tell me what you liked about it? Any improvements to make?



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    default Re: Flashfiction: Regret

    Post by Chris on Mon Feb 07, 2011 7:43 pm

    Forgiveness Man wrote:Someone didn't apparently, hence the negative vote. sad No constructive advice came with it either!

    That won't happen again. I've turned off the negative reps for this section.



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    Post by Forgiveness Man on Mon Feb 07, 2011 7:54 pm

    ^^^^Ah! Cool. Smile I got no problem with constructive criticism but that vote down was just mean. Thanks man. big grin


    I hope I get some nice workshop help.



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    default Re: Flashfiction: Regret

    Post by (Oh!) Rob Petrie on Mon Feb 07, 2011 11:12 pm

    Okay, so, I read it through and I have some comments and suggestions.

    PROS:

    > I think it's a great idea for the topic. It's not as obvious a solution as the plain-old "Father I have sinned."

    > I like that you don't dislike the main character. He's still very human, which is difficult to achieve in 750 word.

    > The final line is great. It's something that a wise grandparent would say. They typically aren't as hot-headed as parents.

    CONS:

    > A bit too much dialogue, and some of it was a little strange, particularly the overly poetic part about wanting to spend time with him after school and him being so full of life.

    > Just general English grammar and writing rules. I think you could benefit from a few one-on-one pow-wow's with a professor or editor.

    OVERALL:

    I think it shows a lot of promise, and I'd like to see your other story ideas. I'm pretty shit at writing fiction (I'm an essayist), so I'm always impressed when people have good concepts. With a little fine-tuning, I think you could pull off a very solid piece.



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    Post by Forgiveness Man on Tue Feb 08, 2011 9:29 am

    ^^^^I think I'm decent at grammar but I usually end up just totally not seeing it in when I write. FORGIVENESS MAN Especially in my fiction, I got no clue why I can't catch these obvious things sooner. FORGIVENESS MAN (I actually have a couple editors helping me with one of my novels.) As for the dialogue, I think I'm usually a lot better at it. But rushing and condensing it kinda forced me to rely a little more on schmaltz. FORGIVENESS MAN I do have some awkward dialogue sometimes but I am having an editor help me out with one of the books. As for level of dialogue, I guess that is also because sitting down doesn't leave too much room for action and in the situation, there's little more to do than talk. So I guess that's it.

    As I said, this is basically freewritten. FORGIVENESS MAN Glad you like it, although I'd hope my novels are a bit less rough around the edges. Wink

    Speaking of essays, I write essays for class too but right now, my English prof is making me anxious as hell. I might need someone to get some tips from in case he isn't as impressed with my essays as my last prof was.

    Anyway, thanks for the critique. big grin I think fiction is a bit different than an essay but not always as difficult to pull off as it seems. (I gotta get in this mindset cause I'm giving a speech on it for class. Razz ) I got some tips for getting good fiction off the ground if you ever need 'em.




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    default Re: Flashfiction: Regret

    Post by (Oh!) Rob Petrie on Tue Feb 08, 2011 10:02 am

    I'm sure you could give me a few pointers when I post my story later. Wink I look forward to the feedback



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    Post by Forgiveness Man on Tue Feb 08, 2011 10:48 am

    ^^^^Sure thing. I'm less good on noticing grammar but I'll try to help. Smile



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    default Re: Flashfiction: Regret

    Post by Forgiveness Man on Wed Mar 09, 2011 6:04 pm

    Bumping this up. I wanna bring this to class for our fiction portion of the course and I wanna make sure it's been polished up as good as it can. So any further pointers would be much appreciated! big grin



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    Post by Bappie on Wed Sep 28, 2011 7:11 pm

    Try to add more mystery to the tale. You can pretty much figure out the entire story from the first few lines. It's also a little wordy, but other than that, for a short story, it was pretty good.
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    Post by Forgiveness Man on Wed Sep 28, 2011 8:46 pm

    Bappie wrote:Try to add more mystery to the tale. You can pretty much figure out the entire story from the first few lines. It's also a little wordy, but other than that, for a short story, it was pretty good.
    Odd that it was wordy. lol I intentionally wrote it stripped down cause it was a flashfiction assignment. Thats prolly why I couldnt do mystery cause there wasnt enough room in the strict word count. Most of my longer stuff has quite a high level of unpredictability, IMO. (I have made jaws drop I think. Razz ) But thanks for the review. I always appreciate it. Smile



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