Some feedback would be appreciated on this story of an intergalactic food critic. No rush.
Let me just start off by saying that I'm not entirely confident of my criticisms about this, and I could be prone to error.
Now, let me a number of smaller issues;
1. On both the Foundation and Library sandboxes, it's generally preferred that you just make one page with your name, rather than one for each draft. Not that it's not an error half of us haven't made before.
2. Secondly, the matter of "show, don't tell". Now, sometimes it's okay to show the important things (such as the main themes or plot of a work) by means of simply stating the less important ones (like how a character felt in response to the actions of another character), even if it is always better to state only what can be observed, and leave it to your audience to infer the significance of it. But you've made a few problems that are worth pointing out.
"followed by a mirthless smile", "he really used an inquisitive inflection", "other eccentrics in gray three-piece suits", and some other less obvious examples throughout. You're best not to just say that something was "mirthlless", or "inquisitive"; say instead what about these things caused the narrator to describe them like that. What about this man's inflection, or his smile, made them have those subjective attributes?
“Very good, how are you?”, he said, beaming.
“Oh, I’m fine.”
I’m used to people like this. Just because we have Michelin Stars doesn't mean we don’t get our share of weirdos.
I don't see anything from this exchange anything which would cause me to call this person a "weirdo". Am I missing something?
Finely prepared food and a friendly staff that is amicable to Travelers
Small plurality issue: I think "are" rather than "is" is the correct word.
Other than that, I like this all in all. I think it could perhaps stand to be a bit longer, and I think that the quote from the description could have a bit more detail, but all in all, I think it's charming.
Thanks for the advice:
1. Fixed that, then.
2. Oy, this is what's been giving me the most trouble. I think I can fix that, though. I'll go in in a bit and see if I can make that work.
3. Well, the waiter gave him a "hello", and the critic responded as if he had asked him "How are you today?". He replied to a question that was never asked. If that doesn't work, I can do a few other things(see below.)
4. Yes, it is. Fixed.
Overall, I think I'm going to beef this up, make it a bit longer, so we can see the critic "in action" longer. Hopefully, this will allow me to show his and his buddies… offness in more detail without telling as much.
Good to hear. If you're struggling with something specific, or you don't know quite how to correct a certain problem, feel free to hop on chat so you can talk it through with me and whatever other members might be on. It's a good medium for that sort of thing.
4. This is a British/American thing. In American English, collective nouns are singular except when the collective are acting on or against each other. Ex: "The staff is courteous." (sing.); "The staff is well-trained." (sing.); "The staff are fighting among themselves." (pl.)
3. For a more obvious disconnect, especially if you are trying to give the impression that the critic has incorrectly memorized dialog, try exchanging or combining phrases from common pleasantries:
B: "You're welcome."
A: "Thank you, sir."
B: "Please, and you?"
I look forward to seeing this expanded. I'm not on chat much, but feel free to ask for feedback.
I like the general idea, and the way it is told by the waiter. (Is the cook THE Anatole, by the way?)
I think it needs to be polished a bit. Especially, I don’t like the bit of paper. I don’t really have anything better to suggest just now, but I feel it would be better if the truth was implied in a more subtle way. I can understand that he would speak English with the waiter, but why would he write or read in English? Is it handwritten? Typed? Or maybe some alien paper technology that can be read in any language (like a Babel-paper sheet, that would be cool).
Also, trying to convey that someone is weird just by the conversation can be tricky in that context. In real life, my first assumption would be that they are foreigners and don't speak english very well (he does say he's not from around here). Maybe if he spoke with a perfect local accent that would suggest something strange is going on. It might also be good to indicate more weird actions that seem out of place, apart from what they say.
mingnon should be mignon
Cabaret should be Cabernet
1. Yes, it is a reference to the chef of Dahila and Tom Travers. Waiting for someone to catch that! I needed to think up a throwaway name for a chef, and it's the first thing that popped into my head.
2. Yeah, I'm rewriting to be more subtle now. Trying to build it up better, trim some fat, and make 'The Reveal' a, well, reveal.
3. In my head, it's an alien paper thingy that is perceived by the speaker as their best language. And the reader has absolutely no way of knowing that. Going put in a bit about the waiter showing it to the maitre d', with the latter proclaiming that it is in impeccable French.