Meeting: 13th March

First of all I’d like to welcome James Bones who joined us for the first time last night. You gave some great feedback and we’re really looking forward to reading your work at future meetings.

Before I get started with the critique summaries I’d like to mention Eastercon. So far we have two members with tickets booked (myself and James) and a couple more thinking about it. It would be great to meet up with group members, past and present, so if you’re attending and you’d like to catch up with a drink and a chat on the Saturday evening just add a comment below, drop us an email or pop a comment on the Facebook group and we’ll sort out a rendezvous.

Who is the mysterious figure with his back turned to us...?

So we had six members attending last night with four pieces of work being discussed over at the alternative venue of Hackspace Manchester

  • James Ridgway presented a short story called It Can Lie. Everyone enjoyed this story, especially the drone and visual descriptions, with a couple of members saying that this was the best work they had seen from the author so far. There was a difference of opinion over the ending, whether it was too abrupt or not. Several members thought that the paintballs were a bit of an anti-climax. Whispering rotors prompted the first TV/movie mention of the night: Airwolf and Blue Thunder.
  • Eric presented the fifth and final part of his long short story Indian Summer. I think everyone enjoyed the dark ending, though a couple of members wondered if it wasn’t a little predictable (not necessarily a bad thing). Several compliments regarding the pace in this action-packed finale, though some people thought that Tom’s demise was achieved rather too easily. Questions were raised regarding Ed’s use of a lighter and the number of tree references.
  • Luke presented the second chapter of his novel A Tale of Two Suns. I think pretty much everyone loved Finlan’s dialogue with a couple of members voicing concerns over his safety and whether we would see him return or not (author hinted that the sustained wound was not fatal–hurrah!). A couple of members noted a further lack of any fantasy (which prompted a discussion on signposting to indicate genre) as well as some editorial mistakes (easily fixed). Questions raised regarding Enoch’s technique for starting pub brawls. And swords.
  • Graeme presented the 11th chapter of his novel A Kill in the Morning. Plenty of compliments on writing technique and research, though a couple of people wondered if there were too many references to researched material. Several people stated that they enjoyed this flashback chapter, that it helped to complete some of the world’s alternate history. A few people wondered whether Hess was presented as being too nice. Most people seemed to like Heisenberg. Same questions raised as before on the number of characters. Everyone seemed to appreciate the nuke scene, including the countdown, though a couple of people wondered if some of the numbers could be omitted.

Afterwards, we headed around the corner to the Marble Bar for a chat and some ale/tea. Lots of talk about Eastercon. I’ll endeavor to pop a post up here on the Monday or the Tuesday after we get back. Otherwise, see you all next month!

Next meeting: Wednesday 10th April (I might be a little late to this meeting–feel free to wait or start without me)


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