Drabblecast 038 - Trifecta I

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Mr. Tweedy
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Drabblecast 038 - Trifecta I

Post by Mr. Tweedy » Thu Nov 15, 2007 9:00 pm

Image

Trifecta - a run of three wins or grand events. Origin: 1970s from "tri" + "perfecta"

Feature Witness by Susan McElheran
Feature Wiggin’s General Store by Basil Godevenos
Feature Pork and Steak-Eye meet Phelan Sheppard by Graham Fielding

Art by Bo Kaier

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Post by Mr. Tweedy » Fri Nov 16, 2007 6:04 am

I liked them in descending order.

I thought Witness was very clever, and perfectly performed. The perspective a truly amoral and disinterested protagonist was fresh, and its pedantic fretting over the Mistress's carpet while failing to realize the Mistress was being murdered was darkly comical. I also like the subtle smugness that the cleaner feels in being the best model available.

"Wiggin's" was interesting, but it disturbed me (as so very, very many other stories have) because it was uncomfortably close to something I'd made up myself and naively thought was original. I thought the overall concept was a little too strange to be adequately covered in so short a space, and it fell flat to me for want of atmosphere. I liked the moral at the end, though: Don't waste the present trying to relive the past.

"Pork and Steak-Eye" I didn't really care for. Again, I thought such a very weird idea needed a bit more fleshing out. I had to listen to it twice before I understood what was going on, and even then it didn't really have any impact. The protagonist just wasn't compelling enough of a character for me to be very interested in whether or not he gets cut up for spare parts. He reminded me of the main course from Adams's Restaurant at the End of the Universe. That creature is enthusiastically happy to be killed and eaten, and I got a similar impression that Pork and Steak-Eye wouldn't be too upset to discover their purpose or fate.
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Post by Graham » Fri Nov 16, 2007 5:03 pm

Really enjoyed the reading of Witness, made the rhythm and language of the story truly shine. Definitely the highlight for me.

Wiggins was a good story too, being from England, I liked the way the storyteller captured the narrators dialect.

Both stories were well worth my time, and I'm proud to have had my story along side them.

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New Format

Post by Kevin Anderson » Fri Nov 16, 2007 5:17 pm

This was a nice format change. Like three fast head shots. If I was a Zombie, I'd be down for the count.

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Post by Mr. Tweedy » Fri Nov 16, 2007 6:50 pm

I thought head shots just pissed them off...
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Post by normsherman » Fri Nov 16, 2007 9:06 pm

Huh, I had the opposite reaction Tweedy- I liked all 3 but Pork/SteakEye was my favorite and Witness my least. It's maybe just because I kept annoying myself with the robot voice when I was trying to read it- I had to take a more human/butler approach to be able to stand it.
I liked Wiggin's when I read it- I thought "cool, my Georgia origins will help out with the southern accent." I also like the idea of being addicted to nightmares.
When Graham sent us Pork/Steak eye we didn't have a clue what it was about but we really liked it. He let us in on it and it then made perfect sense- I changed just a few things that your average American might not understand. I hoped the narration emphasized the nature of the story without giving it away. I like when I have to listen twice to something in order to understand it- as long as that something is only about 5 minutes long!
There are all sorts of neat parallels with this story today- faceless people being used by slick and smiling "racecar drivers".
I totally see that Douglas Adams reference too though.
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Post by AynSavoy » Sat Nov 17, 2007 2:28 am

It seems I am the first to put "Wiggins" last in my ranking...I liked the idea, but like Mr. Tweedy I felt like there wasn't enough time spent on it.

"Witness" was my favorite, followed by "Pork and Steak-Eye meet Phelan Sheppard." I loved the limited perspective in the first story and the chills--and morbid giggles--it provided. It's sort of similar to the second in that way, actually, where the listener knows more than the narrator does--at the narrator's expense. I think I'm generally a fan of that kind of story when done well. For me, "Pork and Steak-Eye" provided just enough information for the length of the story.


As for the format of this week's podcast, I liked it! I think it's great that you're striving to find a way for shorter short fiction to get heard (of course, I'm a little biased as most of my own stuff falls on the short side). I also enjoyed getting to hear a range of voices from Norm--all of which were excellent.

So, for the most part I thought that the authors did a great job with super short narratives, and I was happy I got to hear them!

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Post by tbaker2500 » Wed Nov 21, 2007 7:25 pm

I enjoyed all three. I won't get into what I liked or disliked, because I would like to encourage the format instead. If I had my druthers, 2/3rds of drabblecast stories would be of this length, and the remainder be of the current length.

There are many clever ideas which should only be told in short form. I think all three of these fit that criteria. Any extension would have diluted the concept into blandness. What I like about the drabblecast so much is that fact that I am continually surprised.

I think a lesson can be learned from Escape Pod here. He started out small and intriguing, then as time went on, he went higher up the food chain to writers who wouldn't dare write about tapeworms in fear of offending too many, but yet aren't good enough to make mainstream writing extraordinary. As a result, I rarely listen to that podcast anymore.

Tom

P.S. Awesome album Norm! Fetus in the Kitchen is an instant classic.

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Post by normsherman » Thu Nov 22, 2007 3:19 am

tBaker
I agree with your remarks about short fiction- I think we will be doing more shorter work- expecially drabbles, because of all the feedback like yours we've gotten.
Feel free to say what you liked or disliked about the stories though, these are discussion forums!

I think Escapepod is a great model for podcasting short fiction- largely inspired me to do this in the first place. Don't worry though, we will always be Drabblecast!

And glad your enjoying the album!
"Give us all some Jelly"

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Post by zZzacha » Sun Jun 29, 2008 4:27 pm

I'm working my way through the archive, posting some comments on 'old' episodes. Just try and stop me if you dislike that!

I love the Trifecta postings! Three Flash Fictions in 1 episode, a real treat! Keep 'em coming :]

The first story, Witness, was briljant. I agree with Mr. Tweedy: very clever and with great performance. I always love stories from the POV of a robot, with their misconceptions to the intentions of humans.

In my opinion the next story, Wiggin's, was a funny story about junkies and their pusher. Junkies just wanted to get their fix, they wanted to relive that first great 'hit'. The pusher shrugged and said he just gave the junkies what they wanted. Or is that just my strange way of looking at things...

The last story went completely by me. I just listened to it an hour ago and the description at the top of this page doesn't ring a bell... To me, that's a clear sign that I didn't like the story. My subconscious has already blocked it out and put some other info there.
I'll be there in 5 minutes. If not, read this again.

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Post by strawman » Sun Jun 29, 2008 5:31 pm

zZzacha, yes Wiggins is about addiction.
The last is a very weird story about the existence and consciousness of one being raised for body parts, which is actually nearly on the cloning horizon. Hopefully we will be able to minimize the level of self-consciousness.
Never judge anyone until you have biopsied their brain.

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Post by normsherman » Mon Jun 30, 2008 4:35 am

strawman wrote:Hopefully we will be able to minimize the level of self-consciousness.
Wow- and the most disturbing comment of the week goes to...
"Give us all some Jelly"

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Post by zZzacha » Mon Jun 30, 2008 10:55 am

normsherman wrote:
strawman wrote:Hopefully we will be able to minimize the level of self-consciousness.
Wow- and the most disturbing comment of the week goes to...
strawman can see right through me, he knew exactly what went wrong here. The first time I listened to it, I was in my bath tub. When strawman pointed my high level of self-consciousness out to me, I understood! So I listened to it again while doing the dishes.
And I still didn't like the story.
I'll be there in 5 minutes. If not, read this again.

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Re: Drabblecast 038 - Trifecta I

Post by TheBigBadG » Tue Feb 12, 2013 9:18 am

zZzacha wrote:I'm working my way through the archive, posting some comments on 'old' episodes. Just try and stop me if you dislike that!
Me too, actually...

I'm posting early here not having heard the last of the three yet, but Witness is awesome. It perhaps works more as audio (hence Norm not liking it so much, being Text Reader Prime?) but the quirky bespoke grammar, the utterly smug and anally retentive programming, the eliding the point of the actual story in favour of a comic monologue - it's approaching the same territory as Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. It's genuinely hilarious in places too, which is a big part of it.

Wiggins is good, though I accept the point that variants have been done before. The strength of it, for me, is the character of Wiggins himself though. He's not quite a dealer is he, after all the whole town knows him. It's an addiction analogy, but to something more insidious and accepted than drugs, isn't it...

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Re: Drabblecast 038 - Trifecta I

Post by strawman » Tue Feb 12, 2013 3:03 pm

You might think of Wiggins as one of those political manipulators of the left or right. How do you hook an audience into a belief system and get them to fully invest, so that in fact the "dream" comes true (or is "realized"), and you're willing to fight for it (or at least act and sound like a rampaging soccer crowd). There's power in them dreams.
Never judge anyone until you have biopsied their brain.

"Be kind, for everyone is fighting a hard battle."
Known Some Call Is Air Am
Spoiler:
Non sum qualis eram = "I am not who I will be"

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Re: Drabblecast 038 - Trifecta I

Post by TheBigBadG » Wed Feb 13, 2013 10:38 am

strawman wrote:You might think of Wiggins as one of those political manipulators of the left or right.
Or one with weighted interests in both left and right? Show someone a picture of heaven and help them get another glimpse later on. Don't you worry your little heads about actually getting to heaven, mind. That'll be ¢10 please...

Or am I being too cynical?

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Re: Drabblecast 038 - Trifecta I

Post by strawman » Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:24 pm

That Ideals are just another product to market and ride to power? How could you ever be too cynical about that?
Never judge anyone until you have biopsied their brain.

"Be kind, for everyone is fighting a hard battle."
Known Some Call Is Air Am
Spoiler:
Non sum qualis eram = "I am not who I will be"

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Re: Drabblecast 038 - Trifecta I

Post by TheBigBadG » Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:45 pm

strawman wrote:That Ideals are just another product to market and ride to power? How could you ever be too cynical about that?
I'd reply, but Cops is on and I can't be bot-

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Re: Drabblecast 038 - Trifecta I

Post by sandrilde » Fri Apr 05, 2013 2:03 pm

Trifecta the first - exciting.

I thought Witness was brilliant. Not sure it would work nearly as well in text form, but that's why DC exists, right? Listened to the third one twice and still didn't like it and barely even got what it was about - sorry! I need more clarity than that! The Wiggin's story was ok, but Witness blew me away so nothing else could quite seem as good.

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