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Thread: The Thoughts Of A Dying Athiest

  1. #1
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    Default The Thoughts Of A Dying Athiest

    Meh.

    I thought I'd post my Original Writing Coursework for you to read. The limit was just over 1000 words so, yes it isn't two pages long in MS word/other generic word processor. It's actually just under 1000 words long, but I got told it was good by someone in my class.

    btw, it has nothing to do with Atheism, I was listening to the song by Muse, of the same name, and it fit so that was its title.

    Enjoy.

    The Thoughts of a Dying Atheist

    He slumped against the palace doors, blood pouring from a fresh wound on his stomach.

    Yuri hadn’t counted on this eventuality, he had always envisioned his end in a magnificent king sized, mahogany bed surrounded by friends, family and well wishers all recounting how much they adored him and saying how ‘the good die young’ even though he would be at the ripe old age of eighty five. Never would he have imagined himself leaning against the doors of the Kremlin with a bullet buried in his gut.

    Yuri gathered all of his strength and pushed his way through the doors of the palace expecting to see countless passers by ready to help a man in need, but when he charged out the sky was an inky black and Red Square was bathed in a blanket of night. All concept of time had eluded him during the stay in his attacker’s underground bunker. The Russian national sighed, and then cringed as a shot of pain struck his wound, each breath was laborious and the simple act of breathing brought pain equal to that when he was shot in the first place.

    Most other people would have been screaming by now, but not Yuri Karkov, he was used to pain. Eighteen months in a Vietnamese prisoner of war camp will do that to a person, enduring torture for information about the American attack, Yuri remained vigil throughout this, and he wouldn’t betray the trust of his adoptive nation. America was nice enough to allow entry to a Russian ex-army officer turned homeless person in exchange for a little work. The date was November second, nineteen seventy and Yuri was drafted straight into the army and shipped off to Vietnam, his comrades were suspicious and his superiors harsh, it was a bad time for him but he persevered, for the nation that was willing to help a man in need. A situation in which he was now.

    Footfall after footfall, pain on each step, Yuri struggled to a set of stairs and sat down, resting his legs and his wound. He had much experience with stair cases such as these, after the war he had nothing, the nation that had so lovingly allowed him entry was now blissfully sitting unaware of his presence, shafted from area to area not allowed to settle down, Yuri had no choice but to become a vagrant, a dirty nomad who no one trusted due to his Russian accent and no matter how he tried to persuade people that he wasn’t a communist, they still ignored his pleas for help. And then they picked him up, they propositioned him with promises of riches for a few titbits of information, information that only he could get. How could he refuse? They had money and he needed it, whatever the task Yuri would do it. He had killed before; he had no problem with that. They told him to join the Russian Army, it would seem it was the destiny of Yuri Karkov to serve in the military, to take orders blindly and never question anything.

    It would seem the American government had suspected the Russian president of planning the destruction of America, how they knew this, Yuri didn’t ask, he accepted it and continued listening. He would attempt to get as close to the president as possible, access his personal computer and take any information he could lay his grubby hands on, whatever it was they would pay him cash. And one day in the underground bunker in which the notoriously paranoid president had holed himself up in, his lucky stars must have been shining; he overheard the president and a top scientist discussing nuclear missiles. ‘Pay dirt’ he thought grinning. He rushed back to his bunk and located the communicator the American government had provided him with. ‘No Signal Located’ it read, the device’s green flashing text almost mocking him with its ineptitude.

    Yuri stood, noticing a light in the near distance, his vision was blurred and he couldn’t quite make out what it was, it was then Yuri began to think about why he had got himself in this mess. He had no way of communicating to the outside world, no info no money. Yuri had to get out, and it was said there are only two ways out of the bunker, in a body bag or with the permission of the president himself. ‘Fat chance’ he thought, as bad as it sounded, he chanced the former option. He shouted his information in the mess hall, knowing that the information is something that the army would want to keep a secret, knowing that they would escort him outside, knowing they would eradicate him. For possibly the only time in his life, Yuri Karkov chose the truly altruistic path, the sacrifice of his own life for the protection of the nation that had allowed him entry only to kick him when he was down.

    The light was clearer now, it was red… and white, and it was square. It came into full focus and Yuri laughed. A cola machine, he laughed at the American institution that was the Coca Cola Company, a soda machine in the middle of Red Square, Yuri now knew he was dead.

    “So this is how the life of Yuri Karkov comes to an end!” He shouted to no one in particular, and it was with great relief, the Russian national dropped to his knees, clutching the wound now issuing forth more and more life giving fluid. His vision started to fade and his tired arms fell limp at his side, the gentle murmur of insects and distant cars went suddenly silent as the last breath escaped Yuri’s mouth. His body swayed, then fell forwards.
    Last edited by Diddy; 10th November 2008 at 3:39 PM. Reason: spelling fix
    Skogsrĺ

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  2. #2
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    I think it's posted in the wrong spot. Wouldn't this be non-pokemon fiction?

    Regardles, I thought it was excellent. Short yes, but that does not matter. I throughouly enjoyed the historical aspect of this, capturing a Russian's horrific life in America, Vietnam, and his death in front of the Kremlin. I thought the emotion and irony of the work was done quiet well, as the reader was able to delve into Yuri's thoughts. Even through this short writing, I grew attached to your character, feeling bad for his struggles and life.

    Since this was coursework, no need to comment on description. Plot, flow and characters are what really matter, and you nailed it. I would have liked to see this elaborated upon or even made into a longer One-Shot or something.

    Nice work!

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  3. #3
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    Manaphyman is right, wrong section for this. Unless there was a Pikachu hiding somewhere...?

    Good one-shot and a solid effort. Sorry this is going to be a bit short, I accidentally wiped the last review (only halfway in for a change, as opposed to me being done with it). All in all this was nicely done, it just felt a bit rough around the edges. As it was coursework, though, I understand.

    The characterization really carried this, I thought. The theme of Yuri's life really rang out clearly, and you did a very good job avoiding piling it on, while still keeping it real. Especially due to the fact that this sort of thing actually happened, it made for a strong one-shot.

    The Russian national sighed, and then cringed as a shot of pain struck his wound, each breath was laborious and the simple act of breathing brought pain equal to that when he was shot in the first place.
    You've got two separate thoughts going here. Probably should split this into two sentences.

    The date was November second, nineteen seventy and Yuri was drafted straight into the army and shipped off to Vietnam, his comrades were suspicious and his superiors harsh, it was a bad time for him but he persevered, for the nation that was willing to help a man in need.
    Much the same thing here, only it seems a bit like you were listing off what had happened. It disrupted the nice flow you had going, so you might want to redo this a bit.

    ‘Pay dirt’ he thought, grinning.
    Need a comma here. And...I'm not so sure about this, but isn't paydirt one word...?

    This is more of a personal thing, but the dialogue sprinkled throughout seemed a bit out of place. Not so much that it wasn't needed, but...it broke up the flashback. Hard to explain, I guess.

    A good one-shot, nonetheless. Nicely done Diddy.

  4. #4
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    Damn. I forgot about that, darn it all. Meh, I'm claiming it was set in a world where Russia, America and Vietnam are new non-pokemon inhabiting regions. Far north of Kanto somewhere.

    it just felt a bit rough around the edges.
    Yeah, I had a shorter version I wrote on paper, I got asked to type it up and needed to buff it up to around 1000 words so this is what happened.

    but isn't paydirt one word...?
    Oddly no. Well at least my spellchecker carried that view.

    but...it broke up the flashback. Hard to explain, I guess.
    I also thought that and yes it is hard to explain why I thought it odd.

    Thank you duncan, for the review of which helpful corrections was garnered.

    I thought the emotion and irony of the work was done quiet well
    Yeah, I quite enjoyed the irony I wrote in there by accident, I only realised it after looking over it again. lol

    I would have liked to see this elaborated upon or even made into a longer One-Shot or something.
    Well this is a spin-off story from the thing I was writing for NaNo, in which I go further into what happens before he 'slumps against the doors of the palace doors'

    Again, thanks for the review. :]
    Skogsrĺ

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  5. #5
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    Well, I said I'd look at something done by you some time ago, so thought I'd look at a recent work now I have some time up my sleave. -_-

    Overall pretty decent - short but sweet. You set this up really well, and really quickly, which was well done by you, and the description and emotion used was quite good as well. Intriguing story, and a nice death at the end as well (if one can describe death as 'nice') :P Really did like this - well delivered and engaging. Will agree with the other comments said on this.

    I will comment on something however that I thought iffy for me that hasn't been touched on yet - run-on sentences. There are a few which seems to continue unnaturally. I'd advise trying to keep one thought to one sentence, or when conjoining ideas, using things other then commas, for they do not always work out well. Some quotes I shall now use:
    Yuri hadn’t counted on this eventuality, he had always envisioned his end in a magnificent king sized, mahogany bed surrounded by friends, family and well wishers all recounting how much they adored him and saying how ‘the good die young’, even though he would be at the ripe old age of eighty five.
    See here? Multiple ideas in 'he hadn't counted on it', to 'how he saw himself dying'. The sentence also does seem to go on for too long as well, IMO. Not too terrible really, just minor in this instance (main problem is that it occurs a few times) but if you were to use more pauses (bolded red comma can be added in), and made a new sentence in the normal bolded spot (full stop over comma + capital 'H'), it'll help fix this one.
    Not the only instance; basically just try not to extend a sentence for too long, is all. Another thing is that sometimes the wrong type of punctuation (comma, semi-colon, hyphens, etc) is used - mostly in that commas occur too often...
    Most other people would have been screaming by now, but not Yuri Karkov; he was used to pain.
    Again - commas don't always work well enough for pauses. Here I feel a semi-colon will serve better, as the subject changes a tad here as well (from most would be screaming' to 'why he didn't scream').
    Eighteen months in a Vietnamese prisoner of war camp will do that to a person, enduring torture for information about the American attack, Yuri remained vigil throughout this, and he wouldn’t betray the trust of his adoptive nation.
    This is another uncomfortable sentence just just seems to have too much in it. I'd simple suggest rewording and splitting into smaller sentences.
    He had no way of communicating to the outside world, no info no money.
    Last bit IMO might be better as '...the outside world; no information, nor no money.' Semi colon as you start listing what he doesn't have, and information is less 'casual' then info - slang or casual terms tend to be used only in dialogue, rather then outside of it.
    Yuri had to get out, and it was said there are only two ways out of the bunker, in a body bag or with the permission of the president himself. ‘Fat chance’ he thought, as bad as it sounded he chance the former option.
    Red comma also into a semi-colon, as you have a pause followed by you listing the objects/things (here them being choices) he has. I'd make a new sentence at the second bolded part, and the last part is also a tad clusmy and seemingly lacking a word or few... maybe 'As bad as it sounded, he would chance the former option.', I'll suggest.

    But overall quite good, and food for thought too. Interesting take on the war and all, and props for an engaging character and intriguing one-shot.

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