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Too Hard A Promise
He had never lied to his beloved, But can he promise what she asked?
Steven L Howard
|AUTHOR'S OTHER TITLES (11)
Angel Of The Morning Calm (Short Stories) On his first overseas assignment he ignored the advice of seniors and almost lost it all for the beautiful and independent minded Korean woman who had befriended him. (Inspired by a true story) [13,863 words] [Romance]
Dad's Here To Play (Non-Fiction) Can we become so busy and self-absorbed that there is no time for the things that matter most? A tragedy answered the question. Please click the title to read the story. [2,049 words]
Every Breath You Take (Non-Fiction) A letter to my children: In two separate accidents, two families of our friends buried a child this last year. After this, I look at my own children with so much more appreciation and humility. [410 words] [Relationships]
My Bilingual Marriage (Humor) (Genres) I have enough trouble with one language, when I married and had to learn another, it made for some "memorable" moments. [1,043 words] [Humor]
Some Things Need To Be There (Short Stories) You need some things to be there in order for it to be home. [1,611 words]
Star Of My Morning (Poetry) A Quiet Moment. [67 words]
The Cat In The Straw (Poetry) Then Grandfather said He's a silly old cat But there's many a man Who behaves just like that [336 words]
The Child Who Was Once Within Her (Poetry) The most unselfish love. [410 words]
The Piece Of His Heart Left Behind (Short Stories) Through many years he had learned to hate this man. Now came a simple plea - not from the hated man, but rather from the only one who could touch the bitter heart. [2,237 words]
Vicki's Comeback (Short Stories) From the cutting edge of the knife to the cutting edge of success - her comeback was real this time. [2,863 words]
Where Soldiers Cry (Non-Fiction) A Christmas story that's probably not like any you've heard before. [767 words]
|READER'S REVIEWS (9)
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"My new friends here. I hope you will give me some good hard comment on this one. I have really had trouble taking it from a "short novel" to a short story. Can you tell me: Do I start it in the right place? Does it work as a short story having two distinct parts like it does? What do you think?" -- Steven Howard.
"One more question: I thought long and hard about whether it worked to not name the characters as I have done. What do you think? Is it good as it is? or do they need names?" -- Steven Howard.
"I'm sitting here at work and I'm actually in tears. Trying to hide the fact that my face is red now from fighting how this made me feel. It was extremely well written. It was well worded and had such feeling and depth. They dont need names because this could be any of us when someone that we love is leaving. I loved it! And I would love to read the rest." -- KM.
"A well-written piece Steven. Very few spelling and grammatical errors, not even worth mentioning. I would suggest combing out a few unnecessary qualifiers such as "stomped forcefully". Simply "stomped" would be equally effective. I think it is interesting that you've made the attempt to take this story from a much longer piece and contract it to a short story. It is typically a writer's compulsion to take a short story and make it a longer piece, say novella or novel length, so seeing someone reduce the story should be applauded, though a writer must always be aware if he or she is going to lose something vital in that reduction. I think you made an interesting start. It begins almost as though it were heavily influenced by poetic verse, but the point of the story comes across clearly and it opens close to the first action of the story, the domestic conflict, so it is a good place to begin. I wouldn't open the story any later than that and use the domestic conflict as something remembered by your protagonist rather than experienced on the page because then the story would lose part of its character-building conflict. So, I'd suggest leaving the beginning as it is. As for naming or not naming characters, you need to think of a name as simply being an identifier of that character. I've seen many a successful story where the characters are just listed as Mother, Father, Boy etc., but it only works when each character has a unique identifier in place of a name, such as how they look or act. So the use or lack thereof of names can work in a story, but if it is a fuller story with several characters I'd suggest against not using names so as to avoid confusion about who is doing or saying what. " -- Jerry St. George.
"Thank you KM. I appreciate hearing that. Now that I hear your input about the names I really think it does work better to not name them. Jerry, Thank you very much for the specific feedback. I have gone through it again looking for the mechanical things you pointed out. I may need to do that taks again, but I have found a few things that could be clarified, or combed out. I think your suggestion on the "stomped" line actually improves the emphasis. My favorite beginning line of all literary works was "Last night I dreamt I went to Manderly". So poetic, and such a perfect lead in to the story. I often look at that as the standard when I am looking for a first line to effectively introduce a story. Anyway, I'm glad you liked the beginning." -- Steven Howard.
"Hi Steve, took my breath away,It is beautiful, a very fine piece of writing,You are pure magic,I dont think names matter at all, Jerry do you always have to be mables in mouth, you know its good, GIVE UNTO CAESAR THAT WHICH IS CAESARS. BRILLIANT.D" -- Diana Venditti.
"Thank you Diana. Your opinion means a lot to me." -- Steven L. Howard.
"yum." -- josh.
"Excellent!" -- Avis, Mumbai, India.
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© 2004 Steven L Howard
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