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  • #46
    "Feedback" for KingofCretins doesn't require "Blanket Praise" of KingofCretins, although that's always welcome. As long as it's not openly bitchy and unconstructive, by all means. I can always go re-read the more glowing stuff to feel better
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    • #47
      Well she was pressed for time and it was a brief set of comments that I got back from her, Some points she makes are her own personal tastes, so and bare that in mind when reading them.

      It's quite well-written and he's managed not to character/'ship-bash, although having said that it's pretty plain the writer loathes Angel.

      My main problem with it is uber-competent Xander, who while acting and sounding in-character is a complete wish-fulfillment figure. You can tell it's only a matter of time before Buffy says 'vampire, what vampire?' and falls into Xander's manly arms. . The dance scene where Buffy suddenly turned into a romantic swooning female was actually slightly irritating.

      In that sense, he's a bit of a Mary Sue, and the emphasis on his wardrobe is a little odd, to put it mildly.

      The writing is competent and there aren't that many errors. Even the sex scene isn't excruciating. The main one is the POV thing. It's not normally good form to switch from one POV to another so rapidly but it's not unknown. Usually, though, it involves taking a big step back from the characters' feelings, which he hasn't done here.

      He'd probably have been better advised to adopt one characters' POV and stick to it, though of course you then have to create ways of showing what the other characters are thinking without getting into their heads and maybe he didn't want to get that involved.

      Also, I think he wastes way too much time on the set-up and scenes like the Spike/Dawn interaction, considering the story is supposed to be about Buffy and Spike's first reunion after Chosen. He just can't resist the urge to give Xander more of a starring role than the subject matter warrants.

      Basically, however he might bill it, it's not a Spuffy story. It's a genfic.

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      • #48
        It's quite well-written and he's managed not to character/'ship-bash, although having said that it's pretty plain the writer loathes Angel.
        Times like this that we really need the :ninja: smiley I don't actually loathe Angel, but in the context I used him in this story... yeah, pretty much, because I blame him for a *lot* starting with Season 5 of Angel. I don't think I hate him more than Spike, though, so it seemed like at least the right lens to look through.

        My main problem with it is uber-competent Xander, who while acting and sounding in-character is a complete wish-fulfillment figure. You can tell it's only a matter of time before Buffy says 'vampire, what vampire?' and falls into Xander's manly arms. . The dance scene where Buffy suddenly turned into a romantic swooning female was actually slightly irritating.
        My appreciation of this criticism depends entirely on whether or not this is someone who is reading Season 8 or not -- if not, with all due respect, I mostly don't care how someone would judge the characterization of the character who has changed the most between Season 7 and Season 8. Does he feel wish-fulfillment and Mary Sue for the guy he is in Season 8?

        and the emphasis on his wardrobe is a little odd, to put it mildly.
        This is making me kind of embarrassed -- I consciously made a point of talking about his apparel a lot just so I didn't sound like I had a clothing fetish talking about Buffy and Willow's clothes. When I started in on how I was going to describe Buffy's dress, I said to myself, 'self, they are going to be making fun of you for playing dress up Buffy if you don't make a point of describing everyone's clothes in the same detail'. Ended up still sticking out.

        Even the sex scene isn't excruciating.
        Higher praise a writer can't expect

        He'd probably have been better advised to adopt one characters' POV and stick to it, though of course you then have to create ways of showing what the other characters are thinking without getting into their heads and maybe he didn't want to get that involved.
        I knew going in that I had POV problems... I have this real over-reliance on limited 3rd that I usually carry through whole chapters, and hate that I can't get two people's thoughts on the same thing without writing it twice. I was going for omniscience, but I kinda suck at it.

        Also, I think he wastes way too much time on the set-up and scenes like the Spike/Dawn interaction, considering the story is supposed to be about Buffy and Spike's first reunion after Chosen. He just can't resist the urge to give Xander more of a starring role than the subject matter warrants.

        Basically, however he might bill it, it's not a Spuffy story. It's a genfic.
        Well... I didn't bill it *as* Spuffy, I said it was a story that would deal with their first meeting since "Chosen" -- never meant to do anything other than having Spike interact with *all* the Scoobies. My comments during the process were about how I was stunned by how much more Spuffy-ish it was turning out than I'd planned it to be.

        I still choose to feel complimented about it being called genfic
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        • #49
          One other thing she did mention, that was her opinion only, was that she found fics that deal with Spike and Buffy 'leaping' into bed with each other after the events of season difficult to take realistically unless the repercussions of the AR is at least addressed somehow in the text before hand. Their past sexual history was so fraught, that you just can't ignore it.

          The only way she could see Buffy allowing herself to have sex with Spike once more is for her to be the one taking the lead and being in total control of the situation.

          When it comes to matters such as Character POV's I haven't a clue I'm afraid as I'm not a writer. I know what people mean when I'm actually reading a persons fic, but I couldn't for the life of me explain 'what needs doing what' on paper.

          Oh and to add, this lady does actually collect the season 8 comics, so she's more then aware of 'action man Xander'.
          Last edited by sueworld; 08-12-07, 01:33 PM.

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          • #50
            I agree about the POV issues. I was going to mention that, but then I thought the crux of it could be solved by separating the different scenes with dashes or "Enter" (which I noted).

            They dealt with the attempted rape in Season 7 -- not entirely to my satisfaction, but apparently to Joss's, since he encouraged the viewers to imagine Spike and Buffy made love on their last night together, if they so wished, and he had Buffy fantasizing about Spike in a sexual manner in "The Long Way Home".

            ETA:

            Originally posted by King of Cretins
            I won't rule out a sequel, but I'm really not quite sure what sort of story I'd tell with it. I honestly wouldn't mind writing a buddy cop send-up of a Buffy story with Xander and Spike. They are so "Lethal Weapon" and "48 Hours" that it's funny.
            I'd read that!
            Last edited by Enisy; 08-12-07, 01:50 PM.

            (set made by Francy for me)

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            • #51
              But the whole point is that in a story of your own you yourself have to convince the reader that a relationship is possible with these two again, and not just a relationship, a sexual one. Too many times in the past I've read 'Oh Lub you too woobie, all is forgiven stories' that just don't mesh convincingly enough with how the series depicted their relationship. In my eyes at least they never work and just turn the characters into something else entirely, that just happen to have the same names as Spike and Buffy.

              Joss left all that sort of thing very much undefined, and so it's really left up to the writer of a fanfic to 'finish off' what he 'started'.

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              • #52
                They dealt with the attempted rape in Season 7 -- not entirely to my satisfaction, but apparently to Joss's, since he encouraged the viewers to imagine Spike and Buffy made love on their last night together, if they so wished, and he had Buffy fantasizing about Spike in a sexual manner in "The Long Way Home".
                You say true. I don't like how they dealt with it, either, but if Joss wants us thinking about maybe they did, maybe they didn't (I think they didn't, and implicitly suggest so in the story), and Buffy has the fantasies going, it's obvious she is as far over that as she's likely to get.

                I tried to give all my scene shifts some kind of "Meanwhile, back at the ponderosa" coloring, to so-so effect. Perspective shifts I didn't bother trying to define, but that's because the whole thing was intended to be a single perspective, omniscient. If you go read my other fic, I'm over the top with King-like internal monologue, which I tried to ditch as much as possible in this story.

                I think I may try to write my next fic in my more customary style and see how much better it is when beta'd. DK is a fantastic sounding board and beta reader.
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                • #53
                  Just read "Main Dude" - very sweet fic. Aww, main dude! I liked that Xander approached Buffy's stuff with a slightly passive agressive "talking about myself but really I'm talking about you too" approach - seems in character, his way of approaching with caution.


                  -- Robofrakkinawesome BANNER BY FRANCY --

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                  • #54
                    Thanks, Wolfie The "main dude" line is almost a direct lift from "Cloverfield", which I figured was fitting since, y'know, Drew Goddard. Also, I really like the closeness of Buffy and Xander this season... it should have always been this way.
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                    • #55
                      Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
                      Thanks, Wolfie The "main dude" line is almost a direct lift from "Cloverfield", which I figured was fitting since, y'know, Drew Goddard. Also, I really like the closeness of Buffy and Xander this season... it should have always been this way.
                      Theft is ok. Buffy does it, right? So it must be ok.

                      (I'm thinking "What would Buffy do" as a guide to action is taking on a bit of a different twist this seaon...I need funding for my organisation, what would buffy do...erm...)

                      I'm liking the Buffy and Xander friendship a lot, absolutely. But it makes me greedy...now I want more Buffy and Willow and more Xander and Willow!


                      -- Robofrakkinawesome BANNER BY FRANCY --

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                      • #56
                        Just finished 'Protective Orders'...

                        That was excellent. You made the events feel completely genuine, this is what happened behind-the-scenes. And you managed to give Buffy a birthday that doesn’t suck completely, not that she enjoyed manipulating Angel. The timing lines up nicely with Buffy’s birthday, January 19, and Damage airing on January 28 – good continuity choice. I love how you displayed her intelligence as a strategist and the wonderful teamwork between her and Xander.

                        Elements to enjoy:

                        -How it begins with her being given the opportunity to have fun (the Ducati) and ends with her looking longingly at a chance to indulge herself but instead returning to duty, pain and helping others (the infirmary). A motorcycle seems very symbolic of her desire to runaway and be free while also symbolizing her destiny to be alone. I also like that it’s Satsu that’s going to show her how to ride, in effect how to have fun - foreshadowing much?

                        -The characterization was wonderfully layered and balanced, shifting easily from thoughts to feelings to reactions to dialogue. Buffy and Xander felt like whole and complete individuals, given three-dimensionality in a fan genre that more often than not flattens them for the sake of fan bias. The characters didn’t feel like what you, KoC, wanted them to be but rather who they simply are. Well done.

                        -Loved the Trekky and Star Wars jokes. I'm a bit surprised that Buffy was able to navigate them so adeptly, but I guess she did know who Q was from Star Trek and Bond

                        -It’s interesting how they view their authority as something of an amusing act, a joke. They doubt themselves and their legitimacy even as they are trying new ways of leadership. It was a lesson in how they’ve matured. That as they try to act mature, they in fact become mature.

                        “Maybe I should go. I’ll talk to him myself and find out for good and all what’s going on.”

                        -This line is where I realized that the way you characterized Buffy is exactly how I view her reaction to sending the “can’t be trusted” message to Angel in Damage. I think Buffy’s natural instincts are to blindly trust Angel, that’s where her emotions naturally lead her. And as your fic shows, she’s aware that she can be blind to Angel’s flaws. But she can’t ignore the situation of Wolfram & Hart’s possible manipulation of Angel. Your fanfic laid out exactly how I viewed her character and what I was trying to express with my dissatisfaction with the bald statement of ‘Buffy doesn’t trust Angel’ – because its not that simple as her not trusting him. Because she does trust him, except that she can’t trust him, she doesn't have the luxury of trusting him – that’s the conflict inside her that you wrote in this fic. As you put it, a part of her instinctually does trust him but she can’t ignore the reality of the situation. He’s in the belly of the beast.

                        As for constructive criticism, how you could make it even better:

                        -Do you have a beta? I saw a few typos here and there, like using “show” when you needed “shown”. All very minor and as the story unfolded I didn’t notice much other than the narrative. Great narrative flow.

                        -Buffy speak. A lot (really the majority) of the dialogue feels spot-on, but some notable add-on phrases would be welcome. Like Xander using “Buffster” when he teases Buffy about something. As for Buffy, her giving people colorful nicknames (as she loves to do) might be a nice way to beef up her dialogue. I really liked this line from Buffy: “Much freewheeling fun ahead” and could hear SMG’s voice delivering it.
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