Unforeseen Consequences Continuum (REWRITE IN PROGRESS)

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Emps
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Unforeseen Consequences Continuum (REWRITE IN PROGRESS)

Post by Emps » Sun Apr 08, 2018 9:19 pm

Unforeseen Consequences and it's sequels (collectively called Unforeseen Consequences Continuum) is a multi-genre fic featuring the OC character made by /ksg/ - Katawa Shoujo General, Angus and what happens when he tries to bring Lilly back to Scotland.
Last edited by Emps on Sun Jun 24, 2018 8:55 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum

Post by Emps » Sun Apr 08, 2018 10:18 pm

Re-write in progress
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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum

Post by Emps » Sun Apr 08, 2018 10:44 pm

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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum

Post by SJFzone » Mon Apr 09, 2018 2:43 am

Okay. I've only been able to read up through Day III so far.

I feel that this story needs a lot of work at this point. Lots of things that may be hard to fix at this point, as well. I'll try to go point by point.

1. Pacing: Pacing is a hard thing to explain, but I'll try. Most of the things that happen in this story seem to happen too fast and in too quick succession to feel earned, and sometimes things seem a little confusing because of how fast events play out. An example being the beginning of Day II when Angus and Lilly reunite, find out what the other's doing in Japan, Angus finds out Lilly's with Hisao, and they break up as Hisao starts to have a heart episode. Angus and Hanako meet up (after he goes through the gate, which I'm still unclear on why he did that,) decide to go to the Shanghai, Hanako talks with Lilly, Hisao's heart episode ends, he forgives Lilly despite almost having a heart attack over the subject, and they go to the Shanghai. That's one scene, and while I think with some good writing those events could all be pulled off in one chapter, I don't think anyone would say that they should all happen in the same few in-universe minutes. The fast pacing also brings me to my second point, staying in-character.

2. Out-Of-Characters: I definitely, definitely think Hanako suffers the most from this. Hanako tends to have almost no social anxiety in this story, because this story doesn't seem to have time for it. She goes back to Angus on the train just to talk more about her book, which seems like a silly reason to trump all other reasons not to go talk to him that would be buzzing around her head. She starts singing in the middle of the Shanghai because Angus challenged her to. She sings "Through the Fire and Flames for Christ's" sake. The only remnant she has is her speech patterns, if she didn't have those I wouldn't think she was the same character. I understand that at this point in Lilly's route she's further toward recovery, but this is far beyond where she would be for a long time, and it isn't really earned. Two fixes off the top of my head for the train situation is to have them assigned next to each other so she doesn't have to take the initiative with this stranger, or have her thought process before she walks over to him. Or, it could also be interesting for them to be intrigued after that short conversation, but only reunite at Yamaku to take a chance. Lilly takes a hit to this as well, but mostly in her speech, funny enough. For example,
“What’s this? You come here to tell me off about not telling you I was seeing someone, and less than an hour later you’re trying to get into my best friend’s bed?”
She simply doesn't talk like that. She deals with things a lot more tactfully.

3. Angus is unlikable: At least I found him to be. He barges into these people's lives (only Lilly knows him,) and thinks he knows better, and for whatever reason his assertions about this girl he doesn't know are never truly challenged. For example, this conversation:
A sense of horror crept up on Hisao. “You just went up to her and tried talking to her? In public..."

"...Treat her like any other person. Don’t treat her like she’s any different.”
This dude has no idea how to phrase anything without losing his temper if it's not Hanako he's talking to. He comes off as a huge douche since he's had two conversations with a girl and thinks he knows everything there is to know about her. And instead of thinking, "That's strange, that's not the impression I got out of her. Maybe she just needs someone to be a friend without coddling her," he goes on this tirade. He makes me think of if Jigoro and Kenji had a kid, that would be Angus.
“So, I thought Scots wore kilts?”

Angus turned an unamused gaze at him. “I thought Japs wore kimonos,” he said levelly.

“Only on formal occasions. Otherwise we wear what Westerners wear.”
Weirdly racist, which is one thing if he was simply a racist character, but he's the love interest of Hanako and one of the focuses of the story. And it's exacerbated by the fact that Hisao has no reaction at all to it. Taking place in 2007, Jap would historically and currently be a slur at this point. There are others, but those are the two that stood out most for me while including context.

And one of the weird bits that stood out to me:
“I-If Angus will let you.” They both giggled at that.
What do they care what Angus thinks?
Best Girl: Hanako = Rin > Lilly > Emi > Shizune

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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum

Post by Mirage_GSM » Mon Apr 09, 2018 7:52 am

Th-they’ve just deployed to Menazoid Epsilon
You know... I really don't think Warhammer 40K is something Hanako would read :lol:
Lilly heard the smack of a hand to a face. It sounded like Angus had face palmed.
Actually I did facepalm the moment you described him as wearing a plaid kilt^^°
Angus nodded. “That’s right, they accept non-disabled students here.”
Hanako blinked again. ‘Did he not notice my scars?’
Even if he didn't this comment is really insensitive considering there are many people whose disability is not immediately apparent.
“Hanako? I hadn’t realized you had returned yet.”
But she was waiting at the front gate specifically to meet her, wasn't she?
and less than an hour later you’re trying to get into my best friend’s bed?”
Overreacting much?
“Same with us and kilts.”
Well, after his getup yesterday that boat has sailed...
Are you blind you idiot?
Also quite the overreaction. Hisao was going to tell him something about Hanako and instead of appreciating that he interrupts and insults him for no apparent reason...
Han’s Karaoke” in kanji.
Minor nitpick: Karaoke would be written in Katakana not in Kanji.
a little crispy on the edges.”
What the...?
Not everyone persecuted by that damned Socialist was a Jew.
Socialist? Up to this point Angus seemed to be quite well versed in history...

Okay, that concludes the specific comments. About the story in general...
Basically I agree with the three points SJF made: Your pacing is way too quick, the characters are off, and your main character is unlikeable.
I realize that you're working with the premise of shipping Hanako with Lilly's Ex which makes for some difficult writing to start with - but Angus is such an exaggerated stereotype that he seems more like a caricature, and several times I found myself wondering if you were serious or if you were just messing around.
About the characterizations, Hisao's personality is malleable so it's not so bad there, but both Lilly and Hanako are hardly recognizable. Lilly doesn't have many lines in the first place, but even those few don't really sound like her.
And of course as SJF said, Hanako is a completely different character from the start. I suppose she has to be if you want to ship her with your OC, because there's not a snowball's chance in hell that Hanako would get together with a character as crude, brash and insensitive as Angus.
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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum

Post by Emps » Mon Apr 09, 2018 5:41 pm

SJFzone wrote:
Mon Apr 09, 2018 2:43 am
stuff
Finally, negative feedback!

I'll admit, I wasn't too happy with the pacing, but I figured that was just my inability to be satisfied with anything I write. Good to know other people have a problem with it. Though that still leaves the problem of all this happening over less than a week.

As for the characterization, on Hanako's part some of that is to show how much she has changed after spending the summer vacation with Naomi and Natsume. Though perhaps I did go overboard with it. But part of the problem is that Hanako doesn't have much personality in the VN. We know she's shy and doesn't like being mollycoddled, but other than that there's not much to work from. But surely you've noticed how well "Through the Fire and Flames" fits Hanako, at least in a meta-sense. As for Lilly, yeah I just don't know how to write her. I'm sure that will eventually fix itself with more practice.

With regards to Angus, that may be because Kenji and Jigoro are my two favorite characters. Oops.

The last line though is because Angus keeps paying for everything.

Also, they were in a desert park area when they sang, and Hisao wasn't having a heart attack, it was just going faster than normal. It was like a much less severe version of what happened when Emi ran into him in Act I.
Last edited by Emps on Mon Apr 09, 2018 6:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum

Post by Emps » Mon Apr 09, 2018 5:57 pm

Mirage_GSM wrote:
Mon Apr 09, 2018 7:52 am
things
To me, Hanako seems like the person to read pretty much anything fantasy/sci-fi. Also, consider that the Ghost's, as a regiment, are orphaned, just like Hanako.

That's called character perspective. I know full well its a tartan, Hanako doesn't.

That's actually a pretty good point about it being offensive. I'm going to have to change that.

Yes, but Hanako returned last night, before Lilly started waiting at the gate.

He did just get onto her about seeing someone else. It was mostly anger at his hypocrisy.

You mean you don't dress nicely to travel?

That was Angus thinking he knew better than Hanako's friends again.

Thank's for the tip. Any other tips regarding Japanese writing systems?

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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum

Post by Mirage_GSM » Tue Apr 10, 2018 3:44 pm

That's called character perspective. I know full well its a tartan, Hanako doesn't.
Uhm... That was not my point at all. My point was that he was actually sitting in a train in Japan wearing a Kilt - whether a plaid or a tartan one is secondary^^°
You mean you don't dress nicely to travel?
Threre's a difference between "dressing nicely" and "wearing folcloristic garb that will get me looked up weirdly by people who have no idea what it is". I'm pretty sure I have run across plenty of Scotsmen both here in Germany or when I was travelling abroad, but I've never seen one actually wearing a kilt.
That's actually a pretty good point about it being offensive. I'm going to have to change that.
Which part? There were half a dozen :-)
He did just get onto her about seeing someone else. It was mostly anger at his hypocrisy.
Two points:
1. Lilly. She's always prim and proper and collected, and here she is throwing a hissy fit in a public place with no idea how many other people might be in the cafe.
2. Hanako. Lilly is accusing Angus of trying to seduce Hanako in front of Hanako! This would normally cause Hanako to lock herself up in her room for a few weeks from embarrassment. Even if we accept that Hanako has changed as much as she did in just a few weeks, Lilly has no way of knowing that! Hanako just returned and hasn't met Lilly since then.
That was Angus thinking he knew better than Hanako's friends again.
Which was my point exactly.
Thank's for the tip. Any other tips regarding Japanese writing systems?
You'll have to be a bit more specific with your questions. People have written whole books about the Japanese writing system, and I have no idea how familiar you are with them in the first place.
To Angus, a National Socialist isn't much different from a regular Socialist.
That might be, but up to this point he seemed to be quite knowledgeable about the topic, so this was really jarring. It was as if someone who has just finished giving a lecture on botany followed up with "Oh yes, and Spaghetti grow on trees."

By the way it would be easier to reply if you made it clear which of your replies referred to which part of my post. Some were obvious some took some puzzling.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum

Post by QuietlySomething » Tue Apr 10, 2018 11:14 pm

Maybe I'm just being dense but it's hard for me to tell whether this is a serious fic based on a meme, an intentional meme fic that isn't meant to be taken seriously, or a troll fic that is meant to make people think it's serious when it isn't. I'm inclined to go with one of the latter two... but if it's a joke, it doesn't feel tongue-and-cheek enough to be entertaining. If it is meant to make people unsure about what it is, or take it too seriously, then maybe it succeeded- but wouldn't that be a lot of effort for a pretty cheap laugh? Either way, "The Tragic Tale of Iwanako" this is not.

This fic has a lot, lot, lot of problems, but the general gist of what's wrong here has already been said. The dialogue is unpleasant and a little off-kilter which largely stems from the aggressively unlikable protagonist who has chemistry with exactly no other characters in the story. I could go into specifics but I don't think there's much constructive about a lot of nitpicky criticism when the core problems with this fic have been addressed.

On the off chance that this fic isn't meant to be a joke at all, I do apologize if this comes across as overly harsh. But the fact that it feels like a joke should speak to the problems with characterization, if that is the case.

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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum

Post by Emps » Wed Apr 11, 2018 6:22 pm

Thanks all for the criticism. It was much more beneficial than the little praise this garnered on /ksg/. This being said, I'm going to go ahead and do a full re-write with your advice in mind, so it will probably be a while until I do anything other than respond to comments here.
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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum

Post by Oddball » Sat Apr 14, 2018 11:48 am

The idea for Angus came about when some anon started posting about how the real reason Lilly left Hisao was her Scottish boyfriend, "Angus" (we now suspect this anon to be a cuckold fetishist).
This is a HORRIBLE way to introduce your story. You almost lost me before it even started.
Eventually, I got the bright idea to write a fic about Angus, on the premise that Lilly chose Hisao over him, and, on his way to reclaim Lilly, he met and fell in love with Hanako.
Well, gee. Thanks for spoiling it for me before I've even read a single word of your story.

Then you hit us with a table of contents that's not even written yet. Delete it now. You may have planned things out, but as you write, you'll often find your story starts going into directs you hadn't thought of.
He hadn’t, as he wasn’t sure that was socially acceptable in Japan.

He's worried that talking to somebody isn't socially acceptable, but he wears a skirt.
‘It’s not like she’s seeing someone on the side.
Too obvious.
'What an odd man,’ Hanako thought. ‘I don’t think I could ever approach someone like that.’ Hanako returned to her book.
And then she approaches him. Seems a bit forced.

"prepare for feels" "best boy"
Does this guy just talk in internet cliches? Is that even a thing people do nowadays?
“No,” he said, his voice flat once more, “I’ll brook no excuses. That you didn’t even tell me about this change in plans, even after weeks, is insult enough. Goodbye, Lilly.” With that, he walked past her and through the gate. Curiously, she turned to face where he went.
He flies all the way to Japan, exchanges two or three sentences with her, and leaves. Did it never occur for him to call her?
Angus nodded. “That’s right, they accept non-disabled students here.”
He looks at Hanako and immediately decides she's not disabled. First off, she IS. Significant disfigurement is considered a disability. Two, even if it wasn't, how would he know? Does he just assume every disability is obvious at first glance? Three, even if he DID assume that, why would he assume somebody that scarred DIDN'T have anything else wrong ESPECIALLY when going to a school for the disabled.

Does he just assume Hisao isn't disabled either?
Hanako mulled his proposition over in her head. ‘I hardly know him, and he wants to spend the day with me. Does he like me? He didn’t seem to notice my scars and I do want to talk more about books with him. But he’s a complete stranger. We just met literally yesterday, and he has a girlfriend, or ex-girlfriend now. Will that color our discussion if I accept? But from what I do know about him he seems like a nice guy. And I do need to push myself to interact more with people.’ Hanako realized that a silence was building between them. She quickly nodded. “I-I was going to g-go visit a classmate. He wasn’t at h-his dorm, so I’m g-going to go check a t-tea shop we like to visit.”

This is VERY not Hanako.
Hanako shook her head. “She a-avoided it when Hisao brought it up. H-he didn’t ask about it again, and I-I never asked.”
No, she didn't. Lilly told them about her trip.

... okay, reading into this, Hanako gets WAY to friendly and open with this stranger WAY to fast. The fact that she immedialty assumes he's nice and might like her is already really pushing it. Then they go off together and he starts criticizing her best friend and flirting with her should make her run for the hills. And that's BEFORE he gets into a fight with Lilly right in front of her. I can't think of a single reason why she wouldn't decide then and there that this is a person she should never interact with again.
“I forgot to go running with Emi today. She’s going to be so angry with me once she finds me.” Lilly turned her head to look Hisao in the face. She hoped the face she put on looked intimidating.

If this is Lilly's route, Hisao DOESN'T go running with Emi. If he started after his heart attack, it's something you should have established.
Hisao took gasping breaths. The world in front of him was red. The world in front of him was also the track, which was usually red. Gasping, he managed to get out “Alright, Emi, I think that’s enough for today.” Hisao shut his eyes, consciously trying to suppress the pain in chest. He didn’t think he was in trouble, but he knew the danger that loomed over him. He was also vaguely aware that Emi had stopped her run and was coming back to check on him.
If he's seeing red and has severe pains in his chest, then he's NOT going to be running and if he's even capable of speech, he's not going to be talking that clearly. A few seconds later, he's making a joke about dying and Emi is laughing along with him. She should really be more concerned at this point, even is Hisao DOESN'T act like it's a big deal.
“So, I thought Scots wore kilts?”

Angus turned an unamused gaze at him. “I thought Japs wore kimonos,” he said levelly.

“Only on formal occasions. Otherwise we wear what Westerners wear.”

“Same with us and kilts.”
Says the guy who was wearing a kilt on a train ride.
“Are you blind you idiot? Did you not see that proud girl who came out of the walls she built around herself? Walls she built because everyone, including her only friends, treated her differently?”
NO.

Absolutely NOT.

Your character does not get to come in, be a nice guy, psychoanalyze Hanako and figure out everything wrong with her, treat her like he's just normal with no problems and sweep her off her feet. ESPECIALLY after not even knowing her a full day.

You have just hit the Mary Sue Fulfillment RED ALERT.

Even Hisao points out that he doesn't know her at all and that's gets thrown back in his face. I'm tempted to stop reading your story right here. Your main character is an asshole. I can't believe for a second that somebody like Lilly would put up with him, much less somebody as sensitive as Hanako. I can't see a reason why Hanako would want to talk to this person at all.
Hanako groaned. “Please, n-no. I’d r-rather n-not have m-my ears b-bleeding when we l-leave.”
And now HANAKO is insulting her friends.

Who is this person and what did she do to the real Hanako?
Then your character starts yelling at somebody in a school for the disabled for ignoring him, further cementing his status as a grade A Asswipe.
“If she’s deaf then why does she wear glasses?”
That's it. I'm done with this.

Before I go, I'm just going to ask a few questions. WHY is this guy here? How can he just afford to come to Japan for a girl he knew for two weeks at the most, then stick around flirting with some other girl when she rejects him? What's he thinking? is he going to stay in Japan? is he going to try to get this strange girl he doesn't know to come back with him? Why is he allowed to just wander the school randomly without anybody saying anything? When did Lilly even have time for him over there since she went to see her sick aunt and spend time with her family? WHY did Lilly ever put up with him? He seems to lack any real charm, he's loud, insensitive, and a know-it-all with no tact.

Why is he such a jerk to everybody?
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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum (REWRITE IN PROGRESS)

Post by Oddball » Sun Apr 15, 2018 2:41 pm

Emps, I hope I didn't come off as insulting to you. I mean no disrespect. It's wonderful that you put in effort to write this. it just needs some more work.

Having said that, please put it back up. I hate when writers torch their own work. Leave it for posterity and start a new topic. Also, that will prevent people from being confused when they read the comments later.

Best of luck to you, and if you need help or advice, feel free to ask.
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Re: Unforeseen Consequences Continuum (REWRITE IN PROGRESS)

Post by Emps » Sun Apr 15, 2018 4:11 pm

Oddball wrote:
Sun Apr 15, 2018 2:41 pm
Emps, I hope I didn't come off as insulting to you. I mean no disrespect. It's wonderful that you put in effort to write this. it just needs some more work.

Having said that, please put it back up. I hate when writers torch their own work. Leave it for posterity and start a new topic. Also, that will prevent people from being confused when they read the comments later.

Best of luck to you, and if you need help or advice, feel free to ask.
Insulting or not, most of what you said was already covered by previous comments. I deleted it because I thought that pretty much all there was to say about it had been said, and I'd rather not have what is essentially a rough draft cluttering the forums. Although you did have a good point about the Author's Note and Table of Contents.

That being said, I'm not inclined to go through and re-edit the story before posting it here again. Maybe I will repost it, maybe not. It would be interesting to compare the final version, which will go much slower, to the first, but it's probably best that it's not the first thing they see in the thread.
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