Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

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  • Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

    Here we go, unfortunately real life bit a couple of folks who intended to vote, que sera. The voting went like:
    Code:
                                        1st 2nd 3rd Vot Total
    The Option - Muckraker                   2   1        5
    Orphan Train - Bioprofessor          1   2   1   1   11
    The Last Sunset - dpaterso               1   4        6
    My girlfriend thinks I’m a stalker...
      (...well she’s not my
       girlfriend yet) - Southern Land               1    3
    The Mute Banshee - Centos            1           1    6
    Beyond The Grave - Concar            2   2       1   13
    1001 Valentine Days - StoryWriter    3   1       1   14
    Join me in offering congrats to StoryWriter for attracting most points with 1001 Valentine Days, and to Concar for coming a close second with Beyond The Grave. And Bioprofessor just a couple of votes behind them.

    Thanks also to jmpowell7 and Mark Somers for taking time to read and vote.

    And indeed thanks to everyone who entered, many fun reads here, good to see many different takes on the V.D. theme.

    Just because your entry didn't score as high as you hoped, doesn't mean it didn't deserve to, a different group of readers might have delivered entirely different results. You score virtual points for writing to theme and deadline. It's all about the practice.

    Key: 1st place = 3 points, 2nd = 2 points, 3rd = 1 point. The 3-point voting bonus kicks in whenever contestants don't deliver votes, to make up for the fact they may have received votes but didn't give votes back. Trust me it all makes sense.

    Shout if any problems with the arithmetic or whatever, I'm not infallible.

    For posterity, the discussion thread is here and the entries thread is here.

    DDP Logline Throwdown IV - Mix & Match contest - deadline Sept 21

  • #2
    Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

    I assume you voted, Mr. dpaterso, so you need to add three votes to your total – I consider yours a 9. Congratulations to StoryWriter, Concar and Bioprofessor. Close competition. And thanks to whoever gave me the pity vote.

    I'm going to post a few comments (not too detailed) a bit later.
    STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

      So, in the "real" vote count (adjusting out dpaterso's penalizing himself) ...

      1st - 1001 Valentine Days 14
      2nd - Beyond the Grave 13
      3rd - Orphan Train 11
      4th - The Last Sunset 9
      5th - (with pity vote) Mute Banshee 6
      6th - The Option 5
      7th - (sans pity vote I got) My girlfriends ... 3

      My number 1 was 1001 Valentine Days. Pros, good characterization, good description, and good dialog, emotional. Cons, too rushed at the end and at the hospital scene. (And "14" as the winning vote total, how appropriate.)

      My number 2 was The Last Sunset. Pros, likeable protagonists. Good description, strong ending. Cons, "on the nose" setting, hard to reconcile Fatima's personality (rebellious, outgoing, happy) with going along with the plot. Also, the CIA Agent didn't seem to add much to the story. But I liked the two main characters, which is why it got my 2 vote.

      My number 3 was Orphan Train. Pros. Good actions scenes, moody, train. Cons, didn't seem to go much of anywhere. The big reveal seemed kind of anti-climatic. It almost seems that this is part of a longer story.

      My number 4 would have been Beyond the Grave. Pros Strong description, good characterization, well paced. Cons, hard to "see" what was going on during the dinner with the dead wife – TV, but not TV? (Maybe I'm just slow.) But the main reason this didn't get my 3 vote was because it felt like the main character's dead wife was setting him up with a hooker. Didn't seem too romantic.

      My number 5 and 6 would have been either/or The Option and My Girlfriend ... The Option didn't have much in the way of emotion and it felt contrived. Why wouldn't the girlfriend just leave her boyfriend, especially since the other boyfriend was the father of their baby. It was overly complicated. I had trouble following My Girlfriend ... I got the twist at the end but their didn't seem to be much emotion involved. Or maybe my sense of humor didn't gel well with the story.

      I liked mine, Mute Banshee, but I guess it really wasn't a good Valentine story. I should have written one of the other two ideas that were going through my head, but then I might have had two duds.

      I thought the quality of writing (from top to bottom) was better in this contest than it was in the last couple of these exercises I was involved with.

      Thanks to dpaterso and The Road Warrior for all your work in "sponsoring" these contests.
      STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

        Here's how I voted, for what it's worth:

        1st - 1001 Valentine Days
        2nd - Orphan Train
        3rd - Beyond The Grave

        And a few comments scribbled as I read the entries, just my personal thoughts and opinions.

        The Option

        I didn't follow what Marty's plan was. Guessing it was supposed to be a suicide pact? Maybe not. But I just didn't know. And that made me pull back uncomfortably. Alas other entries got the votes


        Orphan Train

        This maintained drama throughout and the pacing was good. Nothing to feel guilty about, dad, the sh!t deserved what he got. Gets a vote!


        The Last Sunset

        Mine! Started off as a comedy (!) but suddenly I had 11 pages! Some funny lines had to get cut, and then I had to fiddle a quickie ending in the remaining space. So, not too happy with it, but pleased/surprised it attracted a light smattering of votes, thank you thank you.


        My girlfriend thinks I'm a stalker...
        __(...well she's not my girlfriend yet)

        I could see this as a film. I wasn't sure who Doug was shooting at with his slingshot? I wanted to see the driver's puzzled reaction. Later, I kinda figured Doug was in protective mode rather than trying to murder Emma in her sleep, so this wasn't a big reveal, I think I wanted more of an unexpected twist? Alas other entries got the votes


        The Mute Banshee

        I enjoyed this, though I got bamboozled by Aiden turning out to be girl Allena's father, not an unpleasant reveal, but maybe less appealing than mature Allena taking in a wounded soldier, which I thought was where this was going. Gonna be expensive to shoot!


        Beyond The Grave

        This reads well, I'm sure I would have wrinkled my nose and groaned if I'd watched the film, but that doesn't take away from its appeal. Gets a vote!


        1001 Valentine Days

        Good set-up, the hospital scenes made me feel sorry for Sherry and Mike's recovering his memory and remembering her was a well-executed feelgood moment, it's a good ending and Sherry has a good closing line. Gets the vote!

        ...I already knew my #1 on the first read-through, second reading confirmed this. But that's not to say all the entries didn't entertain me in one way or another. Fun contest, good reads.

        DDP Logline Throwdown IV - Mix & Match contest - deadline Sept 21

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

          Congrats to StoryWriter and all the writers who entered! As I mentioned to DPat, I thought the field this time was quite strong. We do a lot of "talking" about writing on the DDP Forums, but grinding it out and entering these contests is a great hands-on way to hone your skills.

          Here are my brief notes (and votes):

          1001 Valentine Days
          A nice slice of life story. Characters and setting were described nicely, but I didn’t get the story plot. Reincarnation?

          Beyond the Grave (1)

          Beautiful love story. Put a lump in my throat, like Ghost. Nice technical writing to blend the TV image with real life. Tricky to do on the page.

          The Mute Banshee
          A benevolent banshee wilderness spirit. Got it. I want one, but not to sure what to make of it beyond that.

          My girlfriend thinks I’m a stalker…
          A good twist on the mistaken intruder trope. Nice action description. I didn’t get lost in the action - very much. Some OTN dialogue, particularly when Doug talks to himself.

          The Last Sunset (3)
          Nice glimpse into a timely love story that leaves us hanging as to how it really ends. Both Grant and Fatima know something the other doesn’t. I want to know how it ends, dammit!

          The Option (2)
          Our second of two dark, deadly love story entries; this one revealing a diabolical, twisted scheme to solve a love triangle “problem." I would’ve liked Adam to approach Audra at the end without saying a word, making the ending even more chilling.

          Orphan Train (mine)
          I based this on a true story where orphaned and abandoned NYC children in the late 1800’s were shipped by train to rural families, who then adopted them. In retrospect, I probably should have used something other than a high budget train wreck to free the kids. Maybe the kids plot to push the evil Rev out the door of the moving train.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

            Originally posted by dpaterso View Post
            The Mute Banshee

            I enjoyed this, though I got bamboozled by Aiden turning out to be girl Allena's father, not an unpleasant reveal, but maybe less appealing than mature Allena taking in a wounded soldier, which I thought was where this was going. Gonna be expensive to shoot!
            Man, I really, really screwed this up. Aiden was NOT the dad. He WAS the wounded soldier - those kids at the end were his (and Allena's) not the (never seen) mom's. The time, at the end, went forward (at least was supposed to) not back. Now I'm REALLY sorry I waited until the last minute to post this and only half re-read it. Sorry.

            As for the cost of shooting ... I know nothing I ever write will ever be shot and I don't give a second thought to the cost of shooting.
            STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

              Thanks for the comments! Always nice to see whether aspects of the characters and story worked, or didn't work.

              Centos, it's possible I just read it wrong, and your intention was crystal clear to others.

              DDP Logline Throwdown IV - Mix & Match contest - deadline Sept 21

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

                Originally posted by dpaterso View Post
                Centos, it's possible I just read it wrong, and your intention was crystal clear to others.
                No, on the night I wrote it and re-read it I noticed the ending was too abrupt. I thought I had written probably 10 pages, so was trying to be terse. When I actually copied the script in from my text editor to Trelby (I was using Fountain format in Jstar), I was surprised to see I was actually short (the script was about 7 pages). It was at that time I should have rewritten it. But my eyes were all big and doe-eyed on two other ideas I was considering and I got lazy. Then I never got around to the other two, then I almost forgot to enter the one ... and I didn't edit or rewrite at all (except for some superficial stuff).

                I might try rewriting it and posting it on the Feedback Forum. I still like the idea and characters, even though I was so clumsy with them. (I also might try to write the other two and post them. I think both would have been better Valentine stories than the one I entered. (Of course the unwritten is always "better" in your mind.)

                Man I'm rambling tonight.
                STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

                  "Is there no one else?" as a great man once said.

                  DDP Logline Throwdown IV - Mix & Match contest - deadline Sept 21

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

                    1st - The Mute Banshee
                    2nd - Beyond The Grave
                    3rd - The Last Sunset

                    Thanks for the votes. I don't enjoy doing semi-serious as much as snark, so this was tougher for me to write. I liked this better at ten pages, and had to do some serious chopping to get it to eight. Centos mentioned that it seemed rushed and even though I tried to prune evenly, the middle and end got more than their share lopped off.

                    The Option The characters seemed pretty flat and blase considering that they were making such a serious decision. I couldn't figure out why the one kid had to die. After all she seemed pretty tough -- why not just tell him the kid's not his and move on with the other guy?

                    Orphan Train I thought this was pretty well written and was in the running for a vote, right up until the end. My problem was I couldn't figure out why this needed to be a gigantic secret. A cruel pervert got killed. He deserved it.

                    The Last Sunset This one got a vote from me, mostly because I liked the characters and it was a love story of sorts. It seemed rushed and I later found out it had a lot cut out. But still the characters were likable.

                    My girlfriend thinks I’m a stalker... Sorry, I just couldn't get into this one. It seemed hard to follow to -- but maybe that's just me. I had trouble caring for the characters and maybe that's why I had hard time getting into it.

                    The Mute Banshee This got a vote. I really liked the setup and visuals in this, also you cared about the characters. The wolves creeped me out, but in a good way. I had some trouble following who was who. I think one of characters was never introduced.

                    Beyond The Grave This one got a vote from me. An actual Valentine's day, themed story that I came close to picking as my number one. The main reason I didn't is because it almost felt like the dead wife was setting her husband up with a hooker. I know that wasn't the intent, but it felt that way. The characters were well done.

                    I forgot to add, take what I say with a grain of salt. I've never been very good with comments.
                    Last edited by StoryWriter; 02-25-2018, 08:02 PM. Reason: Added
                    "I just couldn't live in a world without me."

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

                      Thanks for the comments! I wouldn't have known what you did if you hadn't told me, 1001 Valentine Days felt pretty cohesive to me.

                      DDP Logline Throwdown IV - Mix & Match contest - deadline Sept 21

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

                        My votes

                        1st - 1001 Valentine Days
                        2nd - Beyond The Grave
                        3rd - The Last Sunset

                        Some quick notes:


                        The Option -- A rather unexpected, somewhat psychotic Valentine's day story.


                        Orphan Train -- Not sure why it would be a secret. I can see how it would be traumatic for the children.


                        The Last Sunset -- Well written, and I think a great example of suspense. A well crafted cliff hanging end.


                        My girlfriend thinks I'm a stalker...
                        __(...well she's not my girlfriend yet) -- I lost track of what was going on, and I didn't care for anybody.

                        The Mute Banshee -- Well written.


                        Beyond The Grave -- A very original idea. Well done.


                        1001 Valentine Days -- I liked this because it was upbeat. Fun.


                        Thanks. You guys are great.


                        Hey! You might do it in your house, but in this house we don't lick our butts. -- Mother Teresa

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

                          Originally posted by dpaterso View Post
                          Thanks for the comments! I wouldn't have known what you did if you hadn't told me, 1001 Valentine Days felt pretty cohesive to me.
                          Me too.


                          Hey! You might do it in your house, but in this house we don't lick our butts. -- Mother Teresa

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Results - Valentine's 2018 contest

                            Thanks for the comments and thanks for the vote, appreciated.

                            DDP Logline Throwdown IV - Mix & Match contest - deadline Sept 21

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