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My story entry

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  02:17:53  24 September 2003
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The Duke
On forum: 07/20/2003
Messages: 6
My story entry

Here's my entry. I wrote it awhile ago, when I was bored farily late at night, and probably not as lucid as I should have been.


The Hunted

You know, when I really think about it, I don't know who's hunting who. Am I the hunter, or the hunted? Such thoughts had been occuring more frequently, as my stay the the Zone legthened. Some of the other Stalkers say it can mess with your mind, if you stay too long.

"Well, one more reason to finish this now." I muttered, to no one in particular.

It had all began well, as my brother Joesph and I began working the Zone. Some extra cash, some adventure, pretty good deal, right? We were both ex- military, and confident to no end. We had a good lead on an aritifact that a few dealers had been asking around for. Hold an auction, let capitalism work it's magic, and we'd be set for a long time. Then it all went horribly wrong...

"Joe, I'm going in."

"BS, it' my turn." Joseph has replied. He was always very gung- ho. Sometimes a good quality, other times not.

"You sure about this?" When faced with death, I thought it wise to defer to him.

"Yeah, in, out, and we're good to go. I'll grab it, you cover the door."

"Got it. Goodluck." I turned to cover the approach to the building. It was an old, abandoned house. I wonder if ghosts still linger from the incident? Did the family, surely dead, leave a legacy? At least I would not be the one finding out.

I leaned up against the wall, set my rifle against it, and pulled out a cigarette. As the first smoke escaped my lips I heard a scream. The sound of an assualt rifle firing inside was deafening. Two quicks bursts, then silence. I grabbed my gun and stared inside. It was completely dark, and now, completely quiet.

"Joe.... Joe? What's up man? C'mon don't pull this shit on me..... Joe?"

I took a step inside, and flicked on my flashlight. It was a living room, old, dusty, but innocent looking. I crossed the room, to the entrance of the hallway. I peered down the barrel of my rifle. Nothing. Not a sound. There were three rooms down the hall, I checked the first. Nothing. As I swung my barrel through the second door, I saw something crawl out the window. It looked as if a man... but somehow different. A burst of rifle fire sent broken glass and wood chips flying. I ran to the window and looked outside. Nothing.

In the last room I found the mutilated body of my brother. His head resting a full meter away from his body, which was torn open. I threw up. Repeatedly. I walked back outside feeling lost.

And lost I still am. I vowed that day to avenge him, which is how I find myself sitting in the middle of a field after dusk. This would be setteled now. I was standing on a rise in the middle of what must have been a park. Motion sensors were positioned around, nothing would be slipping past. One of the sensors picked something up. This would be it.

There was a broken down car in the driveway of one of the houses. That's were the signal was coming from. I crouched, aimed, and fired. Armor piercing rounds slammed into the car, blew holes it it, and flew out the other side. My clip emptied, I stood and reloaded. A groan sounded from behind the car.

"You feeling the pain, then?" I grinned, then laughed as another clip tore the car apart. No sounds emegered this time. Shoving another clip home, I walked carefully toward the car. I peered over the top, staring into the blank, dead face of.... a man. A Stalker I knew.

"Oh... hell." I set my rifle on the hood of the car and ran back toward my camp, for medical supplies. I reached into my tent and grabbed the first aid kit, it probably would not be doing him any good now, but I would make the effort at least. As I stood up, I saw it. Even in the darkness, I knew. It had killed my brother, and it had come for me. My mind flashed back to the dead Stalker, were those wounds from my bullets, or something else? I understood then, it was a trap.

"So that's it... I'm the hunted." I reached for my pistol as it lunged. It slammed into me, I felt a quick pain, faintly heard the sound of a pistol discharge, and then was enveloped by the darkness.
  06:19:40  24 September 2003
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back with a vengeance


On forum: 07/31/2003
Messages: 1729
undeniably, you managed to put a good tension in the story. But undeniably, too, your story has no point to read. Don't get me wrong: you have a plot. but what is the point of writing something that people find disappointing in the end? Not to mention you used "I", the first person mode. Writing and playing game is DIFFERENT: if you write using the 'I' perspective, that means you survive to tell the story, not to have your head blown wide open.

Secondly, I once had a very sound tips from a guy name 'Goodspeed' : try to put more to your surrounding. Let people know your anguish, your fear. Let people know your self (the character, of course) through the course of the story.

Thirdly, This is an action story. What is your gun? A ancient AK-47? THe futuristic FN2000 (my favourite!)? The Groza OC-1 ? The AKM?

Fourthly, (this is my personal opinion.) if you are rich, you would go for good gear, and that means you WILL have a grenade launcher (GL). Now, from my personal experience from Half-life, the moment your scared, you will be reaching for the Grenade launcher, blasting the mutatos sky high at first sight.

Lastly, try to describe the monster a little bit. What I know about it is that it is fast, but its shape?
  18:12:37  24 September 2003
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The man lacking a plan


On forum: 08/02/2003
Messages: 273
I agree with Amoki on a few points here. Some description of the monster, no matter how fast it moves would add to the effectiveness, even glimpses would give some idea of shape, texture, weight, etc. Plus drop some gun info in there too, it doesn't have to be a pivotal point of your story but lots of people will pick you up on it if you don't - and frankly it's just easier to put the info in then fend off a hundred questions of why you didn't.

What I don't agree on is that the narrator in first-person stories always has to survive. This makes the main character predictably indestructable, so no matter how much danger they're placed in you know they're getting out of it alive, which can immediatly make the reader quite complacent. 1st person doesn't necessarily mean you're being talked to on a person to person basis, it may be a story gathered from scattered notebooks or even one related from a deceased narrator reflecting on how he met his end in the afterlife, it's a viewpoint that only suffers if you try to tie it in a stiff and linear way of thinking.

It does have nice atmosphere, but the characters don't sound Russian ( unsure if that was your intention, if they are another nationality prob best to drop that in somewhere, and explain briefly why they're visiting the zone ) and we're given little time or reason to care about them before they're wiped out. Bear in mind that you can include characterisation but still make it a short, lean story - getting to 'know' a character doesn't have to include a long, rambling explanation of where they grew up, their family, or things like that, rather a single remark or habit can bring home what kind of a character this is if you place it carefully ( this can be tricky to get the hang of, but works amazingly well if you can pull it off ).

Hope this helps.
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