Meeting – 24 January 2016

A great meeting to round off January with 11 members in attendance, and 2 new attendees: a big welcome to Kay and Mike, and a big thanks for your insightful critiques.

First, a plea for submissions: our Anthology, Revolutions 2, is still under way and we’ve extended the submission deadline until we get enough subs (huzzah!). Please send your Manchester-based fiction to msfantho[at]yahoo.com (you can check out the guidelines on our homepage).

On to the crits!

Peter presented a short story called ‘Hand in Hand’, a curious post-apocalyptic type tale set on a distant world. Members really enjoyed the strange rock like aliens, the clarity, pacing, and the strong voice (though keep it consistent). Praise for the great worldbuilding and tense moments in the story’s middle to end. Some questions raised about the world itself: was there a bit too much going on for such a short piece? What has happened to society? And does our POV character have a name? Calls for a narrowing of scope, some more emotion from the POV, and a stronger arc for him/her to follow.

Next, Tom presented the fifth chapter of his Sci-fi epic, Children of Akorest, with a return to Chen: still stranded in a universe far far away (or perhaps co-located with us, I don’t know multi-verse theory). Members again enjoyed the great worldbuilding and fantastical setting. Praise especially for the characterisation of Nystoro, with some members feeling he was reminiscent of Appa from Avatar: The Last Airbender (the cartoon, of course, not that live-action abomination). Some questions over the nature of the world we are in: sometimes gravity seemed to be stronger, sometimes weaker. Also, would our intrepid scientist so recklessly stick her hands into a pool of what could very well be skin dissolving acid? Calls for a bit more emotion and character from Chen, some members felt she was a bit of a tabula rasa at the moment, and of course for the return of App… I mean Nystoro!

That’s all for this week, folks. See you on the 8th of February!

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