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CHASING PEBBLES IN THE WIND_terminaled
Date: 2017/07/28 11:33 By: rockefeller Status: Admin  
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Chasing pebbles in the wind? That there's some serious wind. Rocks'd think maybe 80/90 mph, at least, to get even tiny pebbles flying around. But at which point you wouldn't have to chase them; they'd chase you. Did the VC mean dust? Dust would seem more metaphorically apt. But then why would anyone chase dust either? Except maybe Rocks, at the behest of Ms. Rocks, with this dry-mop thing she bought for him at Home Hardware for cleaning hardwood floors.

Anyway, Rocky gets it. He's only a little dumber than he looks. George, the MC here, is chasing after his dream of becoming a stand-up comedian. Well, not so much chasing as being pushed by others. Coworkers, friends and family, they all think he should leave their nowhere little dead-end butthole of a town for the Bright Lights and Big City, to chase his calling. His pebbles. He has, after all, seven minutes of not that terrible material. And so off he goes. But then, after freezing and fleeing the stage at an impromptu gig in Las Vegas and totally choking in some Hollywood search-for-the-stars type competition's tryouts, he returns home. A failure. [Oops. Sorry. Spoiler alert.]

Rocks found this cap too long, exacerbated by its being mostly ping-pong dialog: i.e., short, often untagged, occasionally pithy back-and-forths that really stretch out the page count (and that would not present well in TQR's multi-page format). There seemed to be a lot of missing commas: e.g., "That you, George?" his mother screamed without looking which was chased with a cough. And either typos or strange grammar: e.g., "I didn't know they were that many jokes in the whole world." "They're not." Also, the chit-chatty style is weakened by careless paragraphing. Typically characters' actions belong in the same paragraph as their words. This avoids a lot of 'he said' 'she said' type tags while still making it clear who's speaking. And not, e.g.,

George jumped at the sound of his voice.

"Scare me to death."


Overall some funny bits, but too long. Disappointing, too, from a plot standpoint. Also something of a gaping plot hole: George has 10 notebooks full of jokes, but then after a competing comic predictably steals maybe 45 seconds of his act, he has zip? It's probably a credit to the VC's craftsmanship that Rocks really, really, really wanted George to succeed. So, even though there are too many technical problems to send it up, this is mostly a frustrated, No.
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Re:CHASING PEBBLES IN THE WIND
Date: 2017/07/30 11:29 By: bulldust Status: Admin  
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Grrrrrrrr! I hate myself for grammar policing, but the third line of this cap is missing quotes. Okay, not the best way for me to start my commentary, but also not the best way to start a piece of capital that you want people to believe you painstakingly created. The grammar errors were not horrendous, but they were there. Grammar checks are easy to get a hold of. Why give a bad first impression?

I liked the title. It held promise. I looked forward to the read. The premise of chasing a dream in comedy appealed to me. I’m a bovine with a sense of humor. I have to be. The best comedy comes out of hardship, and being livestock is hard. Growing up, there was always that level of doubt if you would see your herd mate from one day to the next. When someone disappeared, we’d often mutter in hushed tones “beef, it’s what’s for dinner.” So I understand hardship and obstacles. The protagonist in this cap was definitely fighting against the tide when he went off to hunt down his dreams.

I feel like the setup was heavy handed. Yes, the odds were stacked against him, but you could see almost see the cattle car in his future. The failure to recover in Vegas, the immediate trust in a competing stranger, the impending betrayal was palpable. That final blow of actual competition was no surprise, but the failure to recover was. I felt empty at the end of this cap. This was obviously the intended response.

Overall, this wasn’t bad. The humor was good. Unfortunately, it was smothered by the dry dialogue that dragged on throughout the cap. Also, the believability that George had a multitude of joke books, but only had a handful of good ones for the competition is a stretch. If his panic was more tangible, it would be more believable. My advice, tighten the extraneous dialogue and plug the plot hole.

As it stands, no. With some work, this should be something very worthwhile.
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