I like the idea of exploring the final moments of one's life and how you tend to let things go when you're nearing death.
My constructive criticism as a reader is that the story lacked a certain tension required to engage me in the story. I feel like I didn't have a reason to care if either of the characters were going to make it or not. I'm also not sure why the person in the stagecoach just left the bodies there. Just my 2 cents.
Congrats on writing the script and being apart of the contest.
Thread: Facing death (Working title)
Results 21 to 30 of 44
03-25-2009 11:10 PM
03-25-2009 11:14 PM
Hey, I read it and I liked the concept.
A few things though... first, some of the dialogue feels a little too modern to be in the old west. Granted, I'm not exactly sure what time period this was in but it felt pretty contemporary.
I also felt that the Man going from howling in pain to laughing was a pretty abrupt transition.
Also, I don't understand why, at the end, the sheriff tells the person in the stagecoach to go away when they could potentially save his life?
Other than those few comments it was well done.
03-26-2009 02:34 AM
Thanks for all the feedback! I realise now that my writing is not as clear as I hoped hehe
Here's how I see the story.
When the man is shot, his first reaction is to deny that he will die, even with all the odds stacked against him. He believes its not his time and that god will save him. When he realises this will not happen he prays for a peaceful death.
The sheriff knows he will die, and he denies gods existence. At least he doesn't want his help.
For me the point of the story is when the man dies. He get's his peaceful death because of a change of heart from the sheriff who eventually apologizes. That is when the man dies quietly.
The sheriff on the other hand does not.
The stagecoach for me is representing the devil. It`s not there in real life. that is why when the coach approaches the life appears to be sucked out of the sheriff, and he knows it. So he becomes afraid of dying, and that`s why he yells "go away".
This is because I wanted him to not die in peace like the man, because he has cursed god, and tries to live his life doing the opposite of what god wants him to do.
But unfortunatly my writing isn't strong enough to convey all of this, but this is at least how I pictured it.
Keep up the feedback guys, I really need it
03-26-2009 03:08 AM
03-26-2009 04:16 AM
I figured the coach was either death the devil or even god so I must have been pushed there by your writing as I'm not usually incredibly perceptive.
I'm not much of a wordsmith myself but this seems like a fun contest.
BTW - I take it that English is your second language. Quite an effort, I struggle with my own language, know only a few words of French and I don't know any Norwegian except "Hey" but that could be Swedish only. Not much chance to use "foreign" languages around here.
Last edited by leepback; 03-26-2009 at 04:25 AM.
03-26-2009 04:31 AM
yeah its my second language. I made a list of strong verbs and I spent A LOT of time on thefreedictionary.com hehe
03-26-2009 06:07 AM
Hi Tormod, thanks for the read, I enjoyed your script.
What stands out for me is that the script, as you noted early on in your thread, is the dialogue. I thought it was really good and kept me interested. The transition from being worst enemies to almost friends (or accepting one another) is very well done. The ending is good with the two passing over and their shells being eaten by hungry birds, but I think you could have done something a bit more profound for a metaphor. The stagecoach could really have been a stagecoach, something a little different would have stood out clearer as either death or the devil.
I did guess that the ending was some sort of metaphor, it had to be, because it was either a metaphor or death had purchased himself a new ride to collect souls in!!!
I throughly enjoyed the read, good stuff.
03-26-2009 07:46 AM
I enjoyed the change of pace here. A different story than what I've read so far in the fest.
I liked the relationship between the two men and how it evolved throughout the script from adversaries to just men facing death. Well done.
One question I thought of after I read the script. How did they get all the way out there in the desert? You'ld think cowboys would certainly ride their horses and not just walk out into the middle of nowhere.
I wanted to tell them to shoot the birds, however this is really inconsequential and wouldn't have affected their fate.
I liked the ending. I did take the stagecoach as the devil, but as an old west version of the Grim Reaper come to take them away. I like the metaphor as well.
I enjoyed this script. Nice work!the writer formerly known as "Conlan Forever"
Need a short script? Have an idea? Want to collaborate? Contact me.
03-26-2009 01:42 PM
Hey there Tormod!!
Well yep to follow on from Conlan's feedback I would say that I too got the Grim Reeper twist or impression from the black stage coach at the end - adding a bleak and interesting gothic quality to the end of the story. I think that marks a fine ending too!
The concept of the men cooperating in their desperate survival is to my mind original and exciting. I think if we could see more of just how their working together allows them to survive longer - would make the evident requirement of this partnership more obvious and dramatic ala the painting 'Raft of the Medusa'
The dialogue is almost there ;) but parts of it are perhaps a little too expositional for my liking - my wife died, my kid died and so on. The tragedy of one mans rejection of hope or spiritual (or for the atheist philosophical) salvation can be better served than with circumstance alone. I think that within those lines we can have something a little more profound (as profound as your ending for example.)
The alliance of these two men comes perhaps a little too quickly, and i would like to see more resentment or a slower build to their cooperation. I like that the 'man' seems slightly immature and i think there is more of this angle that can be played - a father / son style relationship - with man as the young punk rebel, and the sheriff as the psuedo father (over the young man's death to which he is in denial and unawares.)
So there is room for more improvement, more profound meeting and deeper emotional consequence. It's too good a premise to not keep working at it imo!Feature: LORD OF TEARS - A New Legend in Horror - Pre-Order Now http://www.lordoftears.com/
03-26-2009 03:55 PM
Thanks guys for the feedback! I really appreciate it!
I am very glad I signed up for this fest, because I certainly think it will make me a better writer!
I also think the "work together" bit comes a bit to fast, but it`s mostly because of the page count. I`m really not that good at writing short stories hehe. But I will indeed do more work on it! Keep the feedback coming!