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Speakerfrthedead
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digitalbeachbum
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800 word story writing challenge

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/30/2014 Category: Entertainment
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,812 times Debate No: 51226
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (14)
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Speakerfrthedead

Pro

I invite you to a story writing challenge. I propose that we write an 800 word story by writing a minimum of 100 words each round that add up to 800 words. I suggest that we give a short comment on each other's pieces each round.

The story can be about anything as long as it is around 800 words long. We start immediately in round 1. I look forward to your piece.

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The boat rocked gently on the seas. It's predominantly large structure allowing it to float on the pulsating blue waves. Each ocean tide was the size of a Gigantic Kraken monster that gnawed on the large wooden ship and chucked away any dirt that clung to the surface. But as ginormous as the waves were, they were slow and not as rough as Kraken monsters would be.

Robert was tightly holding on to one of the post on the surface of the ship that was called the Rafter.

On the Rafter, were several other people holding on to a wooden post and hoping they weren't going to die and be eaten by the tides. Jessie was the only one steering the ship, Her blonde hair was wet from the tiny rain droplets that fell from the darker than grey clouds above. Jason, Douglas and Napat were all squeezing their bodies on the other posts.

People like Roy were the only ones who weren't holding on to anything and calmy stood still, glaring intensely at the mountain sized waves that jumped up and down near the dark horizon.

...
digitalbeachbum

Con

1)Spelling is good except for the world "calmy" should be "calmly"
2)Grammar:
a. Use of "It"s" which should have been "Its".
b. Used a capital G on gigantic.
c. Use of "ocean tide" I believe is misplaced? How about "Each wave..."
d. Used "dirt" instead of barnacles?
e. Using "But" at the start of this sentence makes the flow of the paragraph choppy, but is acceptable.
f. Entire sentence could be written better:
"But as ginormous as the waves were, they were slow and not as rough as Kraken monsters would be."
I would have said:
"The waves were ginormous, but they were slower and less viscous than Kraken"
I know in titles it is "The Kraken" but I believe Kraken used without a prefix is acceptable.
g. While it is not a rule, ending a sentence with a preposition can be annoying to the reader; you used "be".
h. Ships use a naming convention such as USS Rafter, HMS Rafter or just Rafter. "The" is dropped as a prefix.
i. "Robert was tightly holding on to one of the post on the surface of the ship that was called the Rafter."
The structure of this sentence could be better. I would do it this way: "Robert was on the deck of a ship named Rafter, holding tightly to one of the posts".
j. You could also use a nautical term such as "rudder post" or what I think you really meant was, "mast" instead of "post".
k. "... one steering the ship, Her blonde hair was wet..." use of the capital H in "her".
l. Instead of using "jumped up and down" use "swelled up and down".

My Story:

I awoke from my slumber feeling like I had gone twenty rounds with a prize fighter. My right shoulder was stiff and both my hands were filled with blisters. My back throbbed with pain and prevented me from straightening myself upright.

As I sat on the side of the bed, slumped over, I slowly put my feet to the ground.

I winced as I put my full weight on my feet and legs.

The bottom of my feet felt like I was stepping on tiny, jagged pebbles.

I pulled back my feet to give the blood a moment to circulate down to my toes.

As I felt the blood return I slowly stood up and stretched.

"I am getting old", I thought, "Where has my youth gone?"

I slowly made my way to the bathroom shuffling my feet on the cold, hard concrete floor.

I looked out the window down on to the street.

"Snow?" I thought.

As I turned on the water for a shower, nothing came out. I shook my head in disbelief.

"Damn! They said water was available!" I thought angrily.

Then there was banging from the pipes down below and a spurt of air and black water.

I waited, "I"m not stepping in to that crap".

Moments later a full blast of clean water came forth from the shower head.

I put my hand under the shower head then immediately withdrew it.

I shuddered.

"What! No hot water! I might as well be taking a shower with ice cubes!"

I stood there for a few seconds thinking, "What would hurt more?"
Debate Round No. 1
Speakerfrthedead

Pro

There is a comment saying my introduction is poor and I will admit it is not particularly poetic or extraodianary. My original idea was to use characters based on popular DDO members. But since I might offend somebody by using them in a story, I dropped it.

Anyway, this person has not read the entirety of the story and has already made prejudiced comments. Please, voters, be fair and tolerant. We aren’t professional writers obviously and we have work and school to keep us busy daily. However, of course, we will still do our best to deliver a story.


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Thank you Digital for the advice and pointing out my mistakes. I find your piece interesting and relaxing because you describe the atmosphere clearly. But I felt that your use of multiple sentence paragraphs did not fit the mood of the story. Although it worked in some areas such as the first few sentences, after a while the story felt repititive. However I still enjoyed your writing style overall.


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....

I release the mast from my hug and ponder around the ship, wondering what will happen next. The sudden rain had stopped a few hours ago but the wood around me is still wet.

It has been six days since we have been lost on the ocean, surviving on fruits kept fresh only by discolored wooden box carts. None of us have fallen ill or had scurvy yet, which is a relief. But with each day that goes by, we get hungrier and weaker. Craving for meat and feeling like lying on the floor so we can just give up, right then and there.


Roy has kept us strong from the start. He says we will find land someday. And he promises luxurious treasure and women. Fame and wealth will bestow upon us he said. Of course we believe him. He is the strongest sailor of Merhadus and one of the few who studied the maps of the world. It was Roy who brought us together and convinced us to sail with him to uncharted areas on the ocean.


I, Robert Romeiro, am a geologist and mathematician. I am out here on a quest to prove to my peers that the Earth is indeed round and not flat as pre-dominantly assumed.


However, after sailing for six weeks, we got oursleves lost with nowhere to go. At first it was because of the arguements between the two captains about the direction of north and their different map knowledges that caused us to be lost. And then well, a monstrous blizzard hit us and we lost all of our maps and equipment. The tide that hit us was also unusually large. Twenty times the height of our ship and as wide as an entire coastline.

It reminded me of the old urban myth of the Kraken that destroys whole cities and can only be seen from tall mountains. The tide had engulfed the ship but luckily we were locked inside the cabins safely. It is still a mystery how the ship survived the attack.


But it is what happened afterward that intrigues and fascinates us to this day.

...


digitalbeachbum

Con

Thank you for the advice. The reason for breaking up the paragraph is to relay the thought process of the character. There are long pauses between thoughts, thus it was necessary to break up the sentences. I see how this can be confusing to the reader and will need to figure out a better way to convey my desires.

I found a number of issues with your most recent post, some of which are the same as with your first post.

1 - Spelling. This website allows for spelling checks. I don't see an excuse for spelling errors.
2 - Use of the word "tide" improperly, again, twice. Tides happen at the coastline; they are not waves or storms.
3 - Nautical terms (a slight improvement), but a "floor" is a deck on the ship. You also say, "the wood around me is still wet" but what wood are you talking about? The deck? The mast? The railing?
4 - I am under the impression they have been at sea for more than a week? Maybe two? That would mean the fresh fruit was gone already. I would have used hard tack if you wanted to cause misery.
5 - Scurvy will take 1-3 months before the first symptoms show and wouldn't be an issue so early in the trip. It would be enough to be thankful they weren't lost at sea.
6 - Most provisions on sailing ships were salted or pickled in barrels. Pickling foods created ascorbic acid, which allows for vitamin C. Crates did not allow for food to last long. The heat, humidity and flies would have spoiled the food quickly.
7 - You used two Captains on a ship to create conflict? I would have had Roy be the 1st mate and let his experience with maps and navigation cause conflict with the Captain. When the Captain is lost at sea, Roy takes over.
8 - I keep getting a feeling of "woe is me" then "cool every thing is OK" then back to "woe is me".
9 - If Roy is keeping them strong and they believe they will get women, riches, fame and more, then why do I get the impression they are milling around on deck? A ship requires all types of work with the deck, masts, sails, rigging and ropes. One would think they were excited and busy working. Most ships had to be swabbed constantly because it caused the wood to swell thus sealing the lower decks. They did not use tar or sealant on the deck because you would constantly be stepping in it.
10 - "luxurious treasure and women." then you say "Fame and wealth". Repetitive subjects?
11 - Various grammar issues - Such as the sentence "I, Robert Romeiro, am a geologist and mathematician..."
I find this out of place. You introduce him to the reader in mid-stride of the story. It's like saying, "Mix the eggs with the flour and butter first. The bowl I am using was made in Italy. Then add your vanilla and other spices."
You also have several incomplete sentences along with grammar errors: "And then well, a monstrous blizzard hit..."
12 - Use of the word, "Urban" with "myth".
13 - Switching from 1st person to 3rd person. You start off with 3rd person (saying Robert was tightly holding on the mast) then later switch to 1st person (I, Robert Romeiro...)
14 - Were they safe in the cabin or holding on to the masts? Why would a crew be in a cabin? The only cabin is the Captain's cabin.

While several items I pointed out are not required in writing a story, I find your story lumpy. I like the idea of the Kraken but you focus on it too often with multiple analogies. I'll post a rough draft in the comment section so you have an idea of what I'm talking about.

Part 2
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As I readied myself for breakfast a knock came at the door.
"Who's there?" I said while grabbing my gun.
"Jimmy" a harsh and rough voice said from behind the door.
Not many people knew I was in town so who would blame me for being paranoid? "Jimmy who?" I replied.
There was a long delay before the voice said "You know... Jimmy!"
Still not knowing a "Jimmy" in this town I put the gun to the door and looked through the peep hole.
Through the hole I could see two fat older men who looked like two used car salesmen.
"What do you want?" I asked.
"The boss wants to see you" said the unknown Jimmy.
"Who?" I said sarcastically.
"The boss!" said a second deep raspy voice.
I laughed to myself, "As if saying it with emphasis would help me know who this boss is?"
"So does your boss have a name?" I said with extra sarcasm.
"Oh yeah, Masterdrave" both voices said in harmony.
Suddenly it all clicked for me. Masterdrave was the biggest douche in the world. How did these two goons know I was in this apartment? Who tipped them off? And did they know I was sent to kill their boss?
Debate Round No. 2
Speakerfrthedead

Pro

Digital has conceded this challenge. He will shut his account down and quit this debate. I thank him for all the time he put giving me advice on my story.

I will upload the rest of my story for those who are interested but please do not vote on this debate.


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After the blizzard had calmed and we awoke to the morning, we were shocked to see that the white sky had mysteriously been filled with black, illuminating spots. It was as if night had turned into day, and stars became dark. The spots covered the entire sky and dispersed at the horizon. No one could even explain these dots, not even our young astrologer, Napat, who was nearly 17. Rubbing his head frustratingly, he eventually gave up trying to explain the dots and went back to peeling disgusting oranges from the barrels.

Roy, said that these stars were a message from the gods that told us to keep moving forward and not give up hope. He ordered Jess to sail ahead, stating that we would be bound to reach land if we kept moving straight. However, after sailing for nearly six days, we still haven't seen a spot of land anywhere.

And since we were running out of food, no one had enough energy to do the normal duties like swabbing the deck. The deck stank of rotten fruits and barnacles grew in corners that I didn't dare to touch. And the captain's cabin is proabably infested with rats and other vermin. We were likely never going back there again.

I stop wandering around the deck and walk up to Roy to ask for the fifth time if he has any other plans or ideas on how to get home. He is standing still with his red headband wrapped tightly around his head.

As I am about to tap his shoulder, I notice something intriguing. I stand besides Roy and look at a grey hue covering the entire horizon. The colour is almost translucent. The hue is purely grey with no other colours visible. It looked like someone had spread a sheet of grey transparent paper along the horizon.

Roy is even more shocked than I am. I can see an expression of scrutiny covering his face. He shudders and whispers to me,

"What in the hell is that?"
digitalbeachbum

Con

digitalbeachbum forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Speakerfrthedead

Pro

I concede the debate along with my opponent. The rest of the story was about the crew reaching the end of the world menaing that beyond the grey hue was absolute nothingness, disproving Robert's belief that the world was not flat. Do not vote on the debate.
digitalbeachbum

Con

digitalbeachbum forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
14 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 11 through 14 records.
Posted by Speakerfrthedead 7 years ago
Speakerfrthedead
@everyone, around 800 words. The rules are not strict. But I prefer if we post a minimum of 100 words of story in a round. Yes you can go over 800 words and under 800 words. This is not a test, just a challenge. There is no specific topic, you can write about anything. The story continues each round. At the end of the four rounds we should have a story that has a total of about 800 words. I say 800 words to make the story short but you can go over 800 to 900 if you wish. It does not to be Exactly 800 words. And in each round we will comment on each other's pieces, giving advice or criticism to help each other build our skills in writing. So yes we continue or story that we wrote before and the whole story should be around 800 words long by the end of this debate.
Posted by digitalbeachbum 7 years ago
digitalbeachbum
As I said, I have some concerns about the debate. You said 800 words. Do you mean EXACTLY 800 words or can I go over?
Posted by digitalbeachbum 7 years ago
digitalbeachbum
I see already some issues with this debate but I'm going to roll with the punches and see how it goes.
Posted by ESocialBookworm 7 years ago
ESocialBookworm
Any specific topic? Do we continue the one we write before or start a new one or continue yours?
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