Friday, June 02, 2006

Yesterday night, I went to sleep completely chuffed. I found out that one of my long-forgotten stories on had received some feedback. Not one, but two readers had left remarks.

The Chord of 88 Notes
The unfortunate outcome of racing 2 grand pianos.

Your title and description are most intriguing.

Your intro really sets the scene. It's almost as if the reader is watching the events unfold and listening in, perhaps sitting in the dark auditorium.

'ponderous engines of music.' What a wonderful description, ties in well with the line from the first paragraph: 'the sort of black one would find on a well polished black BMW 745iL'. I like this kind of subtle touch in a story. Lovely craftsmanship.

Your pacing is spot on, the pianos are not moving that fast so you have time to ease up the tension as their inevitable collision approaches. You even fit in a quick physics lesson!

You obviously know a thing or two about pianos, you incorporate facts in your descriptions very well.

Thoroughly enjoyable.

I enjoyed reading this a lot. I thought the tone of comedy was great throughout, as was the pace of the narrative. The piece read smoothly and I particularly enjoyed your turn of phrase. This is a pretty crafty piece of writing.

The bits about the BMWs were great, I liked the comedy element in that. A lot of the imagery was superb and original too, this made the piece all the more enjoyable.


'Dimly lit by stray rays intended for the centre stage, the pianos gleamed softly, its edges glinting where they caught the light.' - This is a great sentence. The description put a vivid image in my head of the whole scenario, and the poetic effect of 'stray rays' is great. Good word choice.

'Owing to the inviolability of the natural laws of the universe commonly ascribed to the second holder of the Lucasian Chair of Mathematics at Cambridge University, the pianos accelerated at a slow rate due to their sheer inertial mass.' - Again, the descriptions are quality here. You bring the situation to life and I like the manner in which you referred to Newton.

'What was in their eyes a scene of two racing pianofortes was now a scene of the impending collision of two steam locomotives out of control, or two raging bulls arguing over fertilizing rights to a particularly fetching cow, or two colliding stars just doing what colliding star systems usually do.' - This example demonstrates how you cleverly fuse the comic with some pretty good imagery. This works well and stood out to me as one of the best parts of the story. Good job.

I couldn't see any errors in the piece.

Thanks for the good read.
Keep up the superb writing.

After all these head-puffing comments, the natural question to ask myself was, why have I not produced anything even remotely half-decent over the past months?

Reality bites, hard. With serrated teeth.

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Blogger cynical-idealist said...

I know how you feel. And I've promised myself to go antisocial once the holidays start and just force myself to write. I've been missing from the world of fiction for far too long.

And I read your story. It was pretty cool, how you brought racing and pianos together. 0_o I didn't know you played the piano (or at least I'm assuming you do because you seem to know the technicalities well enough to impress a non-piano player like me).

3:52 am, June 02, 2006  
Blogger 小李飞刀 said...

Here is some more lan tau puffing comment, lets see if we can make it pop:

That was indeed an art piece...really admire/envy your extraordinary ability to paint vivid images with words.

Makes the yh in the yhywstudios feel unworthy of the partnership...

Ok.. I think I'll stop shoe shining now.

4:15 am, June 02, 2006  
Blogger 小李飞刀 said...

By the way.. what happened to the new window function for your links to friends and family... normally I use your page as an access to some of those blogs.

4:37 am, June 02, 2006  
Blogger Lao Chen said...

Which raises a disturbing question, what will happen to your writing when you join the proletariat class? They don't get 4 months holiday a year...

Google helped me gain more than enough to impress non-pianists :P

It's unpopable, being shrouded in a glass-fibre reinforced resin compound... You opinions are skewed, too skewed.

The codes have been restored.

12:34 pm, June 02, 2006  
Anonymous yvy said...

amboi2.....kembang nampak nyer! ;)

1:29 pm, June 02, 2006  
Blogger cynical-idealist said...

Interesting question. I guess that's why I'm studyng what I'm studying now, so as to at least have half a foot in the door. Also, being single and independant will give me more control over my time, no offense to everyone's who's attached.

But that aside, I think that no matter what profession one is going into, as long as they have the dediction and discipline to follow a strict writing schedule of at least a few hours a week writing, words will be born.

4:20 pm, June 02, 2006  
Blogger Dr. Tan said...

Yes I do miss those. Well, describe something from work then!

8:02 pm, June 02, 2006  
Blogger Lao Chen said...

It's more like deflation though...
I'm so going to restart Thumbelina!

Oh yeah, I frequently confuse which of the double-degree portions you dropped.

Agreed; including students.

Tan Yee Hou:
Not much remarkable from work. Those screenplays were mostly an excuse for practice.

Lacking inspiration at the moment...

1:37 am, June 03, 2006  
Blogger plink said...

I read it. I liked it. I don't know why....

'...why have I not produced anything even remotely half-decent over the past months?'

Your standards are very high. No shame in that.... =)

6:20 pm, June 06, 2006  
Blogger Lao Chen said...

Nope, no shame at all. The only drawback is the depression that comes when these standards are not met. :(

10:02 pm, June 06, 2006  

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