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Rescue on the Imperial Flagship


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13 replies to this topic  – Started by operrier , Jul 02 2011 06:41 PM

#1 operrier

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Posted 02 July 2011 - 06:41 PM

Here's my entry for the mailing list division contest. I'm sorry if there's some mistakes, but english is not my first language. Feel free to tell me my mistakes, I will be happy to correct them.

My story happens a couple of weeks after On Stranger Tides and is the shortened version of the script of a stop-motion movie I want to do this summer. Without the title, it's 299 words long.

Please vote for me. If you do I will put the complete version of my story on the forum!



Pirates of the Caribbean 5
Rescue on the Imperial Flagship




Jack Sparrow was silently navigating in a rowboat. As it was the night, he was guiding himself with his compass. He wanted to find where his old friend Brickbeard was held prisoner because the pirate possessed a copy of the Black Pearl's instruction booklet. Jack needed it to rebuild his ship that Blackbeard had destroyed.

After a couple of minutes, the rowboat finally hit the hull of the Imperial Flagship. Jack reached the window of the captain's cabin. He knew it could open thanks to the booklet of the ship he got from a stranger in Tortuga.

Once inside, he walked across the deck and arrived in front of Brickbeard's prison. He tried to melt the plastic bars with fire, but as the fire was in plastic too, it didn't help.

“Damn LEGO world!"

Then Jack remembered that in that “damn LEGO world,” the doors couldn't lock, so he just opened it.

“Ah, Jack!” exclaimed Brickbeard once free. “Was about time!”

“Sorry mate, the door was fireproof.”

They both hurried to the top of the captain's cabin, but they ran into the admiral. Jack suddenly pointed at the horizon and yelled “HUMAN KID!” The admiral and all the yellowish soldiers, panicked, hurried to the place the child had left them and froze.

The two pirates got back to the rowboat before their opponents realized the fraud. Jack again used his compass to guide himself. After a couple of minutes, they finally reached another ship and climbed on it.

“You could thank me for freeing you,” said Jack.

“Thank ya very much Jack... for bringin' me on Blackbeard's ship! Who the hell were you thinkin' about while watchin' yer compass?”

Jack turned around and came face to face with Angelica.

“Oh, bugger.”

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Edited by operrier, 14 July 2011 - 03:12 AM.

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#2 SilvaShado

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Posted 02 July 2011 - 07:04 PM

Before I get into some constructive advice, I do want to say that I really like the humor of Jack trying to burn the door and then realizing he can just open it. I also like the picture a lo!

You've got a good basis of a story here, but it's not quite exciting enough. It reads pretty well straight through, but the word choices lack a sense of engagement. Everything feels as if it's being watched from a distance. I know English is not your first language so this is tough.

Some of it is as simple as making your sentences more active and less passive. For instance:
"he was also in possession of an instruction booklet of the Black Pearl, which Jack needed to rebuild his ship that has been destroyed by Blackbeard."

To make it more active, I suggest writing it this way:
"he also possessed a copy of the Black Pearl's instruction booklet which Jack needed to rebuild his ship that Blackbeard had destroyed."

The good news about writing it in a more active voice is that is usually takes fewer words that you could use elsewhere. Also, even if you don't go with my version, the "has" should be "had" to keep the proper tense.

Also, all punctuation should go within quotes, not after quotes. For instance:
“You could thank me for freeing you”, said Jack.

The comma should be after "you" before the quotes. "You could thank me for freeing you," said Jack.

And if you use an exclamation mark or question mark, you don't need a comma at all. You have a few instances where you put a comma after the quotes. You can just delete those.

Also, it's generally not a good idea to use parenthesis in a short story. But you can use a dash to emphasis and set apart something. For instance:
"Jack Sparrow was silently sailing one of the rowboats of the Black Seas Barracuda (a ship he “borrowed” from Redbeard)."

I would recommend changing it to:
Jack Sparrow was silently sailing one of the rowboats of the Black Seas Barracuda -- a ship he “borrowed” from Redbeard.

I hope these comments help you revise. I'll be sure to read over your revision and leave more comments then.

Good luck in the contest!

Edited by SilvaShado, 02 July 2011 - 07:05 PM.

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#3 operrier

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Posted 02 July 2011 - 07:19 PM

Thank you very much for your comments! I made the improvements to my story.

There's more action in the complete version because Jack and Brickbeard have to escape from the Admiral, but as it was 1742 words long, I had to cut the whole battle scene against the IFS crew.

Anyway I hope you enjoyed.

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#4 Bricks4Fun

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 12:08 AM

Operrier

I enjoyed your story and I hope you post the full version someday regardless of the contest outcome! I would also like to see the stop motion movie you want to make. Here we have another entry that features the Imperial Flagship, which I think is great since I both own and love this set.

You mention a nice plot device here of using instruction booklets to both build and get around LEGO sets in the story; clever! I don't believe anyone has introduced that concept yet so strong work on being unique. Also, I like the organization in terms of storytelling that you have working for you here; it easily reads as an exciting excerpt from a Pirate adventure. We see Jack get into trouble and get out only to find himself in a bigger mess; this is what the movies are all about. Furthermore, I think that you understand Sparrow's character very well when you state that he is rescuing Brickbeard because aside from being a friend, he possess the instruction booklet he needs. While Sparrow is a very likable character, the struggle he has is that he is torn between helping himself or helping others. Here he serves both masters in his rescue attempt, so excellent work getting that across.

The setup and story are engaging and make me want to read more. I think grammar is important because you don't want it hurting you when it comes to judging. However, the most work that you could put in now is in the dialogue department. While you do a nice job in voicing your characters through your dialogue, I think that some of the lines could be more exciting and funny.

For example, when Brickbeard exclaims that jack has come to save him, you have a comedic opening here to have Jack say something sarcastic, probably referring to the already funny scene in which he couldn't melt the bricks with plastic fire. Instead of Jack saying "Aye, come quickly." Jack could open the cell door and say something like "Sorry mate, door was fireproof!"

Or you could switch it around and have Brickbeard be the sarcastic one, probably angry because Jack was so late.  

Also, while the last line of 'Oh bugger' is pretty good, you have a second opening here to make it funnier, probably with Jack remarking on his situation.

If you need some inspiration or perhaps want to read the actual dialogue used in the movies to see how you can incorporate them in your story, you can try doing a search for lines from Pirates of the Caribbean. Many sites have them available for you to read.

The picture is very nice by the way, I like the moon in the background. It reminds me of one of the LEGO catalog pictures of the Black Seas Barracuda. Since you own the QAR, maybe you could add some more crew members pointing swords at your heroes.

Other than that, I think you've got a solid entry. Hope this was helpful! And as for the non-native English speaker, I could barely tell English wasn't your first language. Nice work!

#5 operrier

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 05:18 AM

Thank you Bricks4Fun for your interest in my story.

I would like in fact to put my script on the forum when it will be done so everybody can have a look at it and maybe help me correct/improve it (I would really like that :P). Doing the stop-motion may be hard and long, but I'll start as soon as I get the PotC sets I need.

I changed the short dialogue between Jack and Brickbeard and replaced it with your ideas. I think it's all I can do for the dialogue as I needed to cut a lot on that to fit with the words restriction. Fortunately there will be lot more dialogues in the complete version.

Your comments were in fact helpful. I'm glad I'm not that bad in english! Thanks again.

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#6 MstrOfPppts

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 10:33 AM

Hi operrier. I must admit this is another promising entry but for my taste it lacks connectivityonly. The idea is great and jokes as well as the instructions booklet reference to real LEGO are also a nice touch. But even if you didn't tell us it's a cut from a longer script I think it's clearly noticeable.

The thing is that you have a long intruduction with the rescue part, and then there is a big hole and then the arrival at the QAR. There's too much you're trying to tell. The introduction as always is needed and it's in place. The rescue description is good for the humor and it fits into the story as a nice detail. But then the arrival at QAR is in my opinion too far away (timeline vise) to be included into the story because there's too much empty space in between, where we don't know what happened. Have in mind that for a short story you have to do significant changes to an almost 2000 words long script if you want to tell us everything. I'd keep the story as it is even with the QAR part but would consider these changes:

First take the prior advice to write in a more active way - this will clearly give you more words.

Second, shorten the introduction a bit and feel free to leave out some unimportant things. In some places you have whole sentences describing single facts, which could easily be replaced by an adjective or a few words in a previous sentence. For example your first paragraph could be changed into something like this:

Jack Sparrow was silently sailing in a rowboat through the night. He was guiding himself with his compass which was pointing to the place where his old friend Brickbeard was held prisoner.

It is unimportant for the story where Jack sailed from and that he borrowed the BSB from Brickbeard. Also the fact that the compass shows the thing you want the most is clear to anyone familiar with the POTC series and therefore not needed. Not seeing anything in the night is also a simple fact that can be spared for the sake of word count.

Third: describe the escape a bit more. Even if it's not a long fight like in your script. That would add the missing part to the story - what happened between the prison and the boat arrival to the QAR - and give it more conectivity.

I'd also shorten the ending a bit with something like Bricbeard asking Jack what or preferably who was he thinking about when watching the compass before thanking him for bringing them to the QAR. Therewith you could get rid of the last sentence which explains what people could've figured out from the Brickbeards question.

Sorry for tearing apart your story a lot, but as with previous suggestions feel free to use these or leave them. I just think that this is a very good idea and a nice first draft, but needs more work to get an excellent shor story from it.

Either way good luck in the competition!

Edited by MstrOfPppts, 04 July 2011 - 10:35 AM.

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#7 Bricks4Fun

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 01:38 AM

Hi operrier

Glad I could help out! I have seen some stop-motion vids on youtube about LEGO and some were very good. I can imagine they are hard work however, but then again you have a whole summer to put it together! Good luck and hope to see your completed work on here sometime. Maybe they should have a second contest down the line for LEGO Pirates vids (unless they have already had one on here)

#8 operrier

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 06:24 PM

Thanks MstrOfPppts for your comments. I changed a lot of parts following what you suggested me to do. Please give me feedback on it!

Edited by operrier, 05 July 2011 - 07:41 PM.

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#9 MstrOfPppts

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 07:15 PM

Ahahaha, the human kid to the rescue! Nice touch there with this joke. I really prefer this version to the first one, it makes all sense and everything is connected. Just a quick suggestion would be that yellow soldiers could play dead when thinking a kid is approaching and you wouldn't need the rope and mast action. Just in case if you want to add something or describe something more in detail. Although that part is not unnecessary, it could be left out, because the kid idea is really awesome!

Also at the end it's not clear weather Jack said “Oh, bugger.” or is that what you as a writer say. In either case i think it can easily be left out.

Damn you all, there's so many good entries, it'll take me a week to decide which one to vote for. Great improvement and again good luck!

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#10 operrier

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 07:40 PM

View PostMstrOfPppts, on 05 July 2011 - 07:15 PM, said:

Ahahaha, the human kid to the rescue! Nice touch there with this joke. I really prefer this version to the first one, it makes all sense and everything is connected. Just a quick suggestion would be that yellow soldiers could play dead when thinking a kid is approaching and you wouldn't need the rope and mast action. Just in case if you want to add something or describe something more in detail. Although that part is not unnecessary, it could be left out, because the kid idea is really awesome!

Also at the end it's not clear weather Jack said “Oh, bugger.” or is that what you as a writer say. In either case i think it can easily be left out.

Damn you all, there's so many good entries, it'll take me a week to decide which one to vote for. Great improvement and again good luck!

Thanks for your feedback. I found your idea of the frozing soldiers very funny so I used it.

I have now made the changes to my final version so if anybody else want to help me improve it, feel free!

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#11 blackpyre

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Posted 07 July 2011 - 07:10 PM

Wow, I had read an early version of this story but had no time to comment.

This version is remarkably improved.  The jokes, actions, and progretion are clean and great to read.  As it stands I'd only point out one thing that bothers me.  AndI'm not sure I'm right on this point.  But when you write:

Quote

Jack Sparrow was silently sailing in a rowboat.

I'm not really sure it can be considered sailing since a rowboat has no sails.

Other than that, I really like this entry.

Will

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#12 SilvaShado

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Posted 07 July 2011 - 07:16 PM

You've definitely strengthened this piece! I like it a lot. The end is superb

Here is a minor suggestion to polish it off.

Quote

Then Jack remembered that in that “damn LEGO world” the doors couldn't lock, so he just opened it.
There should be a comma after world, before the quotes. ...damn LEGO world," the doors...

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My husband and I have designed and published a card game called Project Dreamscape.  Here is the Kickstarter page and the pre-order page.


#13 operrier

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Posted 08 July 2011 - 03:37 AM

Thanks to everybody who helped me to improve my story! I appreciate a lot! :)

Edited by operrier, 08 July 2011 - 03:38 AM.

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#14 Cap'n Crunch

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Posted 08 July 2011 - 09:06 AM

One final correction

Quote

Jack turned around with Angelica
It should be

Quote

Jack turned around to face Angelica

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