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Post: Questions and Answers

Fri, 03 Jul 2015 20:51:11 GMT

Fri, 03 Jul 2015 20:51:11 GMT

I really liked this story. My late father was a cop, and he was asked that question a million times. I never thought about how it made him feel or what it might have made him remember. Until now.

Mon, 06 Jul 2015 03:08:55 GMT

The concept of shielding soldiers from this kind of knowledge is really intriguing and raises interesting questions about complicity and responsibility. I also admire the story's structure, the way one part leads smoothly into the next.

TBL Admin
Tue, 07 Jul 2015 04:11:13 GMT

I appreciate the use of time in a piece as brief as this one. The setting is well-established at the beginning, which infuses the memories with a really strong potency. This story is also very imagistic and descriptive in a deft and concise way, which is highly effective. I am very pleased, too, with how it manages to touch on specific emotions without feeling super sentimental.

Wed, 08 Jul 2015 00:30:07 GMT

I agree with Slytherin about this story's structure. Each graph paves the way for the next and drops just enough intrigue to make the reader step eagerly to the next block. In addition to thinking about how life-changing this moment is for the old soldier, I wonder about the kid who was shot. He is described as a soldier, too. Who was he? An enemy, a deserter? What crime had he committed? Perhaps he hadn't and that is why his death is described as a murder.

Thu, 09 Jul 2015 03:51:41 GMT

This was a very visceral tale. It comes off like it was written very effortlessly, as if the story just had to be told and it wasn't a forced labor. I especially liked this sentence: fired countless rounds into the night, loaded mortars, even lobbed grenades when circumstances called. There's something about the verbs here that really grabs me. 'Belching Rifles' is also an outstanding detail, I keep rereading that part over and over.

Fri, 07 Aug 2015 01:25:33 GMT

Great story. Really enjoyed the subtlety of the "tell." Nice job.

Mon, 23 May 2016 18:00:01 GMT

Oooooooh. I was wondering how we'd get to his knowing that he'd been the one with the live round--and it was the tell. That's good craftsmanship right there!

Tue, 02 Aug 2016 09:07:27 GMT

LOVE the way the poker tell ends up becoming the twist in the plot. Beautifully evoked setting (the dust in the room, the light on the table), the time shift is as smooth as a mind casting back to an earlier time and the sentences are simple and precise. Excellent piece, thank you.

Fri, 12 Aug 2016 00:09:26 GMT

The ending is truly elegant. I had a feeling about half-way through that the crux of the issue would be learning he had actually been responsible for death, and yet I felt fully paid-off by the manner of the disclosure. The visual descriptions pulled me through the story wonderfully. I appreciate that nothing is over-written, so as to make a point of the language itself. Instead, the language simply and effectively supports a lovely story, the depth of which exists without being forced in any way.

Wed, 05 Apr 2017 21:33:38 GMT

This is easily one of my favorite stories up on F(r)iction. The ease in which I entered the narrator's past, coupled with the casual lyricism and the heaviness of the content, reminded me a ton of Frank O' Connor's work, specifically his short story, "Guests of a Nation." I am really glad this story is out in the world.

Fri, 23 Feb 2018 22:33:16 GMT

I wasn't sure how else the "tell" would play into the story, but I was definitely impressed with ending the story with the "tell." That's very smart writing. Really enjoyed this story.