Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Personal Assessment: Fight or Flight

Today I've decided to criticize myself for my Tuesday Literary Criticism.  Hopefully next week I'll have The Dragon Reborn finished for my Full Analysis...

After a few minutes of deliberation, I have decided to use "Fight or Flight" as my subject.

I give this story a 68% as a horror flash fiction piece.

There are only two characters in "Fight or Flight": the narrator (it's first-person) and the monster.  Very little is learned about the narrator, even less about the monster.  In fact, the monster only comes in in the penultimate paragraph (what an alliteration).  The narrator has a tiny arc, getting progressively more afraid throughout the 232-word piece, but that isn't really enough.  This story needed a good 100-word increase to get the characters built up to a level reasonable for flash fiction in my style.

Half of the story is basic description of the setting.  That isn't a good percentage, especially not for me.  It fleshes it out enough for a slightly longer piece to be passable.  My description is awkward in this story, partially due to the present-tense.

The plot definitely needed work.  I tried to build tension at the beginning, which I did to some extent, yet not enough.  For this piece to work, I needed more sympathy and more tension.  The purpose was to get your heart beating a little faster than usual.  I didn't do too well in that effort.

I got two positive comments on this story when I posted it back in April.  Later I got a rejection from Microhorror, a mass-publisher (around 1/3 accepted nowadays from what I gather).  So, comme ci, comme ca.  Feel free to look back and decide for yourself.

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