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Losing Touch - Introduction

by Sopster


Spoiler! :
Hey YWS!

Sooo, as some of you on chat may know, I'm working on a novel based on finding out where memories go after memory loss, through the eyes of someone with Alzheimer's. The Intro (shown below!) is an extract from the main character's physcology homework assignment which he is reading out to his Dad in Chapter 1 (is explained more in Chap. 1.) This tells you nothing about the plot so I want it to be looked upon as simply a piece of writing. I want to know if its too heavy, that kind of thing! :)

Any comments are appreciated!

Thanks!

-Sop.

“It’s funny how such a shocking event can slip away from your mind so easily. One minute you feel as though it is taking over your every thought and movement and then just as suddenly as it arrived, it vanishes from your head.

Every so often we look around and ask ourselves ‘How did we get this far?’ or feel the buzzing high of pride or sadness and think ‘Why did this happen to me?’

Memories can shrink to insignificance in the mind and then swiftly grow back into a thought of immense importance and take over with overwhelming power. And so the unexplainable cycle continues.

But what is a memory? A memory can be the faded photograph of yourself when you were young, shoved inside a dusty drawer. Or, a memory is the crimson flourish on the wall behind a startled victim. A memory is the dazzling but terrifying mirage that you experienced during your first drunken night out. No matter how hard you try to keep these things permantly swept under the carpet, it's impossible. Like pushing at a pulling weight. They’re always present and there will always be things, moments, conversations that remind you. It’s like the copy of that battered, dated novel that you store in a cardboard box out of sight. Now matter how many years later you open the book, the musty smell will be just as pungent, just as choking…just as, well, memorable.

So, the million dollar question is how can these memories which are almost imprinted in a person’s mind just vanish into what seems to be nothingness? Sure enough, the memories are still there because the person has lived through the experiences but why don’t they remember? Is it a punishment? Is it God’s doing? Or is it simply because the person doesn’t remember how to access the memories?

I mean, one moment a person can recall everything about a major memory such as the first death that they experienced. You remember every aggravating detail as though you’re still in the moment. You can feel the bladed tears scraping down your face. You can feel the punching rhythm of a broken heart in your mouth. You can feel Grief’s fists clenching your insides. The physical pain. And then with one swift movement, it’s gone. The mind has been emptied of its contents and is nothing but a hollow shell with the potential to be refilled…”


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Sun Sep 26, 2021 10:50 am
HarryHardy wrote a review...



Good Morning/Afternoon/Evening/Night(whichever one it is in your part of the world),

Hi! I'm here to leave a quick review!!

Anyway let's get right to it,

“It’s funny how such a shocking event can slip away from your mind so easily. One minute you feel as though it is taking over your every thought and movement and then just as suddenly as it arrived, it vanishes from your head.

Every so often we look around and ask ourselves ‘How did we get this far?’ or feel the buzzing high of pride or sadness and think ‘Why did this happen to me?’

Memories can shrink to insignificance in the mind and then swiftly grow back into a thought of immense importance and take over with overwhelming power. And so the unexplainable cycle continues.


Okay....an interesting thought process there...not too often that you run into someone thinking this deeply about a memory and the mention towards potentially bad memories definitely set off some alarm bells for me there, cause you do wonder what might've happened to cause these sorts of thoughts to surface within the person speaking here.

But what is a memory? A memory can be the faded photograph of yourself when you were young, shoved inside a dusty drawer. Or, a memory is the crimson flourish on the wall behind a startled victim. A memory is the dazzling but terrifying mirage that you experienced during your first drunken night out. No matter how hard you try to keep these things permantly swept under the carpet, it's impossible. Like pushing at a pulling weight. They’re always present and there will always be things, moments, conversations that remind you. It’s like the copy of that battered, dated novel that you store in a cardboard box out of sight. Now matter how many years later you open the book, the musty smell will be just as pungent, just as choking…just as, well, memorable.


I see...well, this appears to be some kind of relatively in depth analysis of a memory being done by the character here like you mentioned in the spoiler...aand well, this is all sounding quite convincing so far...I can agree with quite a few of the points that are being established by this person here.

So, the million dollar question is how can these memories which are almost imprinted in a person’s mind just vanish into what seems to be nothingness? Sure enough, the memories are still there because the person has lived through the experiences but why don’t they remember? Is it a punishment? Is it God’s doing? Or is it simply because the person doesn’t remember how to access the memories?


Hmm, that seems like a fair question to ask, and I'm assuming this is the main question that this person plans on asking through their project here..so that's actually a pretty cool piece right here. There are definitely some very interesting thoughts here...and I think it can lead to some very interesting places.

I mean, one moment a person can recall everything about a major memory such as the first death that they experienced. You remember every aggravating detail as though you’re still in the moment. You can feel the bladed tears scraping down your face. You can feel the punching rhythm of a broken heart in your mouth. You can feel Grief’s fists clenching your insides. The physical pain. And then with one swift movement, it’s gone. The mind has been emptied of its contents and is nothing but a hollow shell with the potential to be refilled…”


Well...this is a neat little start, it kinda revolved a lot around the same idea, which got a touch repetitive towards the end, but for the most part I think it comes off pretty much alright. Its certainly sufficiently interesting that I'd wanna know more...but at some points I felt like it went a little deep along mostly the same points repeatedly.

Aaaaand that's it for this one.

As always remember to take what you think was helpful and forget the rest.

Stay Safe
Harry




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Tue Mar 15, 2011 7:20 pm
Sopster says...



Thanks for the advice! I shall put it into a spoiler now! :)




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Tue Mar 15, 2011 7:17 pm
bugbug368 wrote a review...



Can I just add, maybe you should'nt put the Hey YWS! part in it, because I find it destracting and your mind can focus on that, and most non-intelligent may think it's part of the actual chapter.
I think once you post your chapter, maybe you could add a reply onto it, to say what you want to say. This is just a suggestion but it might help! :wink:




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Tue Mar 01, 2011 4:56 pm
Sopster says...



Hey Skins! :)

Haha, don't worry about it...we all get busy with work at some point.

For such a short extract I think you've given me some great, helpful comments, so thanks!

I haven't really got round to working more on this but when I do I shall definately try to add an interesting twist somewhere! You guys are the readers so your advice definately counts.

Thanks again everyone!
-Sops- xxx




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Mon Feb 28, 2011 8:17 pm
Sins wrote a review...



Heya Sopster. :)

Due to having loads of work lately, I haven't been able to get to this very quickly at all, so sorry for that. You seem to have already gotten some lovely reviews here, so I may not have loads to have. Plus, as a whole, this is short. With any luck, I'll at least be able to help you out a little bit.

Overall, I actually really like this. I'm extremely jealous of your simile and metaphor skills. You've created some wonderful imagery here, and I think you've started this off with a very interesting subject. The piece itself makes you think, which is what I assume you were going for. It's almost like one giant philosophical quote. I like it. Even though we've only had a tiny glimpse at your narrator, I like him/her, so far. He/she sounds like an interesting character.

The only critique I can really come up with is something that Isha mentioned actually. Although I find this very interesting, there isn't really any thing that draws me in and gives me no option but to want to read on. There's no real hook. You have some lovely imagery, great descriptions and interesting comments, but there isn't really anything that glues me to the page as such. Judging by what I've read already though, I certainly think that you're able to fix that.

What I'd maybe suggest is that you end this piece with a sentence/few sentences that either shock us, or hint at something strange/interesting. I'm assuming it's the narrator here that gets the Alzheimer's, right? If that is the case, have the narrator mention something that hints at her/his disease, but doesn't go out and blatantly say it? Does that make sense? If it isn't the narrator who gets the Alzheimer's, this could still work fine. Just instead of using I, use a name, he, or she e.t.c.

Hmmm... I think that's about it. Sorry I wasn't much help... Keep up with the good work!

Keep writing,

xoxo Skins




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Sun Feb 27, 2011 3:12 pm
bugbug368 wrote a review...



Really good writing you did here. I can't read it all but when I get the chance I will. It seems, so far, really good. The way you have written it makes you want to know more.

Overall, you have a nice story, it may just be a good one. :)




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Thu Feb 24, 2011 6:31 pm
Sopster says...



Hey Cass!

Thanks! Yes, I'm really interested in the topic to! But it's really complex so it'll probably take time!

I'm starting to get a feel for the plot in my head so I'm going to start developing that and the characters in the first chapter.

Sure, I'll keep you updated (and sort out the spacing xD)

-Sop.




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Thu Feb 24, 2011 6:26 pm
eldEr wrote a review...



Sop! I am here - again! Well, not here, but I am at one of your works. Yeah.

*Reviews*

So, first of all, I'll say that I absolutely adore this idea. It's something that I wonder about on a regular basis myself, so it's neat to see a whole novel based around the subject.

The very first thing I want to point out, though, is your spacing. You need to hit 'enter' one more time between your paragraphs. xD I was having issues reading it, personally. Anyways... now, the REAL review.

Throughout the story, I noticed quite a few punctuation/grammar errors, but those are easily found by re-reading, and they've already been pointed out. So, I will not spend too much time on that. This is sort of tricky to review because I'm not quite sure what to point out. The voice is okay, a bit... average, if you will. It's very short, and not really a story yet, so there's no plot holes to point out or characters to analyze.

It was well-written, I'll give you that, and it was interesting to read (especially near the end.) However, we really need a hook somewhere. It's an interesting concept, but there was nothing there that really reached out, grabbed me by the wrists and yanked me in, you know?

Anyways, I like the idea - sorry for the lame review. xD

Let me know when you have the rest of it out, because I'd love to read it!

~~Cass




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Thu Feb 24, 2011 6:15 pm
Sopster says...



Hey xDudettex!

Thanks for that, the comments were really helpful! I shall edit those mistakes!

-Sop. :)




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Thu Feb 24, 2011 6:13 pm
xDudettex wrote a review...



Hey!

I think you have a cool idea for a story here :)

1. Nit-piks -

shoved inside a dusty draw.


'draw' should be 'drawer'

that you experienced during your first drunken experience.


Using the word 'experience' twice here, is a little repetitive. I'd suggest changing - probably the first one - for a different word. Try - 'observe'

Now matter how many years later you open the book the musty smell will be just as pungent, just as choking…


Comma after 'book'

question is how, can these memories


The comma after 'how' isn't needed

You can feel the bladed tears scraping down your face. You can feel the punching rhythm of a broken heart in your mouth. You can feel Grief’s fists clenching your insides.


I don't know if the repetition of 'you can feel' works or not. It's just a suggestion but you could try something like -

' You can feel the bladed tears scraping down your face. The punching rhythm of a broken heart in your mouth. Feel Grief’s fists clenching your insides.'

The descriptions are still there and are just as powerful, but the structure of the sentence is switched up a little. It's up to you whether you change it or not though - it's your story afterall :)

The mind has been emptied of its contents and is nothing but a hollow shell with the potential to be refilled…”


I loved this last line :)

2. Overall impression -

So, like I mentioned at the start of this review, I think you have a good idea for a story here. The whole concept reminds me of a subject I studied when I took A-level Psychology for six months, so I found myself able to connect well with what was being said.

Your descriptions were nice too :)

I hope this review helps!

xDudettex




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Thu Feb 24, 2011 5:34 pm
Sopster says...



Thanks for the comment! :)

Yeahh, I wanted to write about how grief and suffering is almost physical. Almost like being beaten up...

The main character is going to be age 60/70 because I think that writing through the eyes of an older character would be an interesting challenge!

I'll keep you updated!
-Sop. :)




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Thu Feb 24, 2011 5:29 pm
DeadEndsAreOptional wrote a review...



I really like the idea of your story and this first part that you shared is really good. I especially like this part

You can feel the punching rhythm of a broken heart in your mouth.

That is one of the things that I remember feeling when I witnessed the first death of a family member, great job at describing it. The one question I wondered is how old is the person with Alzheimers? Just curious, because Alzheimers usually sets in when your elderly. For example, I knew someone who had Alzheimers and they were in their late eighties. Otherwise, you did a great job with the writing and I got really into it. I hope you post some more. :)

Keep Writing!
~DeadEnds





Nothing is impossible, for the word itself says, 'I'm possible!'
— Audrey Hepburn