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Reviews from
The Santa-Man


An elevator story--but not for the contest.

  37 total reviews 
Comment by
Muffins
 
Review Stars
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Fantastic dialogue. A classic difference between the two generations. The pace was quick and hard, like waiting the ball in a tennis match. Great stuff. No wonder this won the contest. Wow.


 Comment Written 27-May-2014



reply by the author on 27-May-2014
    Hey, Muffins, thank you. I always appreciate it when curious folks look through my portfolio. Generational stories are a favorite of mine. As predictable as people are, every generation comes up with a new way of being preditable.
    Thank you. I appreciate the review.

    Peace, Lee
Comment by
nancyjam
Premier Author
 
Poet Rating
  Rank:  159
Author Rating For Short Works
 
Review Stars
  Rank:  296
 
Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level
Congratulations on the well deserved win.
Great dialogue. You really captured the
generational differences in communication.
Loved the warmth of the ending.
Great story.


 Comment Written 18-Jan-2014


Comment by
Pilot2Pen
 
Review Stars
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Wow! I can see why you won story of the month. I wish I had a six-star rating to give but I'm out at the moment. What a great read that flows effortlessly. Love the dialogue. Great ending.

Ken


 Comment Written 18-Jan-2014


Comment by
2011 Short Works Writer Of The Year
Captain Jack
 
Author Rating For Short Works
 
Review Stars
  Rank:  385
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Definitely one of your best, Lee. Which is saying a lot.

You have a knack for using verbal intercourse to expose your characters' true selves, good or bad. The humor and pathos here were mixed together to just the right effect.

I have an idea. Why don't you write a Thesaurus of witticisms? Just a few of them here:

~ somewhere between past-cute and impending-puberty
~ skeletal Tinker Toys
~ have to go all Donner Party on each other.

Incidentally, I don't keep $2 bills in my wallet, but I do have a one million Turkish Lira bill--just to prove I'm a millionaire. (Don't tell anyone it's actually exchanged at seven bucks).

Anyway, you're aging like fine wine, my friend. Keep 'em coming.

~ Erik

(Guess I reached my quotas on sixes for you)


 Comment Written 18-Jan-2014



reply by the author on 18-Jan-2014
    Many thanks, Cap'n. Yeah, verbal intercourse has become my thing--I can't get the other kind.
    You have a knack for picking out my favorite lines. The past-cute/impending puberty bit still makes me smile. I truly don't know where stuff like that comes from. I ain't that smart.
    You're one of the few readers who weren't puzzled by Tinker Toys.
    A few minutes ago, a reviewer called this story trite. Maybe. But I'm not going to slit my wrists.

    It's good to have you back, Erik. Maybe someday you'll fill me in.

    Thanks again.

    Peace, Lee
Comment by
2014 Novelist and 2016 Short Works Writer Of The Year
Phyllis Stewart
Premier Writer
Premier Reader
 
Poet Rating
 
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Regarding the notes, when doing one-sided phone conversations, you are correct in using ellipses, but there is no reason to use italics, which are normally used to indicate unspoken thought.

Nicely done for what it is, but a bit on trite side, imo. It's been done UHT (Umpteen hundred times) in various forms. I did like the Santa suit and that Julio and the doorman had been thru the elevator problems repeatedly... painted a good picture of the building they lived in, and sort of explained why Santa would be divorced from the woman who would live in such a place, he being a private school dean and she being a tenement dweller. That seemed to be a more interesting story in my head. :)


 Comment Written 18-Jan-2014



reply by the author on 18-Jan-2014
    Thank you, Phyllis. It might help me if you explained what you considered trite, and what has been done UHT 'in various forms'. Sometimes I wonder if the same can't be said for all stories.

    I don't recall describing the building as a tenement. Most tenements don't have doormen.

    I appreciate your comments. Peace, Lee

reply by Phyllis Stewart on 18-Jan-2014
    Good point on the doorman. So the tenement idea was my misreading. Guess it was cuz of Julio's rough manners and tough attitude. In that case, it was a bit different. All well-to-do folks, and Julio was not at the school on scholarship, but paid tuition. Not that it makes any diff to the actual story, but it ruins the story I had going in my head. :)

    Trite in that it's the authority figure "getting to" the rebellious kid ... much too quickly, as is often done in such stories. I was a teacher and had rough students. I "got thru to" several of them, but it took months, not hours. It's good writing, no question, but a tired tale, in my opinion. But obviously folks like to hear that story redone, since you won the contest. But folks also like to see the same plot over and over in sitcoms... and people go to parades over and over. People are creatures of habit. So writers use what works... what's been done to death. No problem with that, but I like to see something fresher, with a bit more imagination. And I do find it here, as much as anywhere else. It's just sadly not very common, cuz, as you say, every story has been written.

    The movie Sixth Sense stands out in my mind, because it was so well done that I really didn't see the end coming. My hubby did, but kept his mouth shut, luckily. My mom and daughter were as surprised as I was. That was great writing, imo. Something so fresh and unexpected that I didn't KNOW what was going to happen.

    Sure, those stories are hard to come by, but they're possible. The world has changed... so stories can change. Cell phones alone provide new opps for new plots, computers and worldwide connects, too. Rehashing the tried-and-true plots with the same characters in different clothing, even Santa suits, is just yawwwning. You asked. That's my feeling on it, as a reader. As a writer, I know how hard it is to come up with something fresh and unexpected. I only have a few stories here, in fact. The only original ideas I liked well enough to use. My favorite is "How Was YOur Day?" It won a contest here, as did my other three stories, "Corruption of Justice", "The Funeral", and "Worth Every Penny"... not that any of them are great literature, and yes, surely they have all been done before in some form, but each one SURPRISED the readers... they didn't see the ending coming. Of course, they are shorter stories, so a surprise ending is pretty much required.

    Guess I just prefer the sort of story that throws a curve at the reader. And I think we all like to read that kind, too, since it's just fun. Sure, we can enjoy predictable stories, too. I just wish there were more of the other kind, I guess. :)

reply by the author on 18-Jan-2014
    Thank you for your reply, Phyllis. I don't write 'literature', either. I try to be entertaining, and I make no excuses for that.
    Plot has never been my strong suit. I work with characters and language and speech.
    That's were I try to be fresh. Turns of phrase can be just as rewarding stunt endings, for those who read for those particular pleasures.

    Julio is the name of the doorman. I never gave the boy a name.

    Thank you again.

    Peace, Lee

reply by Phyllis Stewart on 18-Jan-2014
    My books are all character-driven, built around ordinary people dealing with challenging situations, so dialogue is more prevalent than narrative as they tell the story as they live it. I think this approach works great for a novel, but I guess I see short stories differently. Maybe it's my reading background, where I always preferred short story collections to novels... can read "more" in less time, and who isn't always busy?

    So, I do see where you are coming from, and I did say that it was very well written. Just would like to see some twists and turns that I haven't seen before, I guess. In a novel, you have so much more opp for depth and breadth, but when your words are limited, maybe you need more plot emphasis? Just my own personal feeling, as I said. There's no question that your writing is superb. :)

    The second place winner, Ingrid's story about Purgatory, was fascinating and original, I thought. I even suggested to her that she continue it as a novel. I was THAT engrossed in it. Why? Read it and see! Sure as hell don't see THAT done repeatedly... filled with imagination that just pulls the reader in!

reply by the author on 18-Jan-2014
    I think we just have different views about short stories. I'm not enamoured of tricks and stunts. I use them--especially for very short works.

    I tend to write gentle stories about real people. My twists and stunts come in turns of phrase. I think you are looking for something you would write. Perhaps that's why you missed a couple of important elements in my story. You were re-writing it as you read.

    I did read Ingrid's story. I enjoyed it.
    I'm glad you did, too.

    Peace, Lee
Comment by
Contests
 
 

Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
A seven star rating from the Contest Committee for the recognition this post has received from the FanStory community. While this was not a Contest Committee decision, the committee recognizes this achievement with a seven star review.


 Comment Written 18-Jan-2014



reply by the author on 18-Jan-2014
    Thank you. Lee
Comment by
Judy Couch
 
Review Stars
 
 
Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level
This story is amazing. I loved your grasp of the way teenagers act. I loved the way the Santa man talked to him. I especially loved the ending.


 Comment Written 09-Jan-2014



reply by the author on 12-Jan-2014
    Thanks for the galaxy, Judy, and your thoughtful comments. Much appreciated. Peace, Lee
Comment by
2009-2014 Poet Of The Year
adewpearl
Premier Author
Premier Reader
 
Poet Rating
 
Author Rating For Short Works
 
Author Rating For Novels
 
Review Stars
  
 
 
Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level
Thank you so very very much for sending me to this story :-) I love it! You've succeeded in making me smile, my most wonderfully talented friend. Brooke


 Comment Written 16-Dec-2013



reply by the author on 16-Dec-2013
    Oh, thank you, Brooke. I didn't mean to bully you into a review.
    Not that I don't appreciate it. I expect you have quite some catching up to do. Thanks for the galaxy. Peace, Lee

reply by adewpearl on 16-Dec-2013
    Yep, you're one tough bully! LOL :-)
Comment by
RPFoster
 
Review Stars
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
That was really cool Lee, I like how the turn of events ends what could have been a bad thing into a good thing. One question, how do you get certain words into italics like that, I still haven't figured it out? Merry Christmas, to ya.
Robert


 Comment Written 12-Dec-2013



reply by the author on 12-Dec-2013
    Thank you, Robert. I believe there are different methods for getting italics in place. Mine method is simple. I write my story the way on want it on my computer--with all italics in place. When I go to post on site, I switch to Advanced Editor, the paste in my copy. All my italics show up just as I wrote them. Once that's done, I can even change fonts, if I want to, and the itals stay intact. I hope that helps.

    Peace, Lee

reply by RPFoster on 12-Dec-2013
    Thanks Lee, I'll give it a shot.

reply by the author on 12-Dec-2013
    If you run into trouble, let me know.
    FYI, I usually choose my photo first, then switch over to Advanced Editor before I do anything else. L
Comment by
Erik McGinley
 
Review Stars
 
 
Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level
Absolutely hilarious!

I am guessing you got your pupils to proofread for you? :D

My rating says it all. There's not much point in criticising a flawless work, though I think you did miss out a full stop.

Not a plug .. I'd really appreciate your thoughts on Shadows. So far most of the reviews I have had are predictable and I'd really like that two dollar bill :P


 Comment Written 11-Dec-2013



reply by the author on 11-Dec-2013
    Hey, Erik, thank you. I re-read the story, and I'm still missing the the missed stop. I'm delighted you enjoyed the story. I am duly impressed by Shadows, and have left you a review. Thanks again. Peace, Lee

reply by Erik McGinley on 11-Dec-2013
    Lol! You actually reread it looking for a missed out full stop? :D

reply by Erik McGinley on 11-Dec-2013
    Lol! You actually reread it looking for a missed out full stop? :D
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