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Looking for betareaders for a furry action script (Violence/Swear warning)

duskyblue

Artist/Hobbyist Writer/Floof Enthusiast
I've spent a while on this story (spent 3 years world building and changing up story ideas). Ever since I found out about Dan Harmon's story circle, writing has been a ton easier and I finally made a complete and cohesive draft that only took me a week to make (for the first draft). I just finished my second draft and I'm interested in getting some raw public feedback on my first real story.

My script is 40 pages, but it's around the size of a short story. It's a furry based plot revolving around a 20 something year old who goes on a mission to find his kidnapped friend. It's kinda adult oriented in the violent/swearing sense, so heads up on that.

Title: Stray Dogs Will Shoot
Genre: Action
Word Count: ~8,000 words
Cringe level: Up to you

docs.google.com: Stray Dogs Will Shoot

Post reading questions that will help me make this better:

1) Was it cringy to read?

2) What were your favorite parts?

3) Which parts did the story drag or feel confusing?

4) What do you think the overall message of the story was?

5) Any suggestions on improving the overall story? (Most important)

I want to make this into a comic/graphic novel by the end of 2020, maybe even publish it online and in print too! Any tips from comic creators on illustration, publishing and marketing is needed too! I would absolutely love it if I can work up to providing printed copies of my work!
 

nyshox

Member
First things first, I am gonna disclose my background so you see my biases. I have never been a beta-reader, but I've been a reader and a writer. If I would ask for a beta-reading, especially random people on the forums, I would make them read a version that resembles the final intended product. In your case, it's a graphic novel so the graphical part is quite important and missing here.

I only read the first scene of your script and I am a little confused. That could be the presentation style of your text as a script, which feels like voice lines for a video, not really a text for people not working on the project to read. The most familiar presentation I thought of while browsing the text was the play, which is naturally presented in text form. I suggest adding more play elements into your script so readers can understand what is going on. For example, you can elaborate your scene setting a little bit more when your start a scene. When we just see names and dialog, it is not clear how everything fits together. Since this is a furry thing, I expected a furry character description or a visual reference, because otherwise I would just assume they are human.

Now about the actual content. I can relate to the scene, so a lack of setting didn't hurt me much, given my North American background. From the preamble (scene introduction description), I thought the main characters were Boston and Stephen but there is a lot of focus on the criminal and the cashier. There are no hard and fast rules in literature, but usually the first scene always focuses on the main characters. It is difficult to focus on the two main characters when there is so much going on. The next scene, which I skimmed through, does a way better job as a story beginning.

All in all, I see a lot potential and passion in this project. It wouldn't be this long and you wouldn't dare requesting for reviews, if you didn't care. ;) Please don't give up and best of luck!
 

KiokuChan

4-tailed kitsune
I enjoyed that actually. Let me get to your questions.
 

KiokuChan

4-tailed kitsune
1) Was it cringy to read?
No. There was a few parts that seemed a little confusing or possibly slightly incinsistant but overall it was quite cool.

2) What were your favorite parts?
I liked that being in the city caused them to start regaining their more primal traits that they previously had to surpress.

3) Which parts did the story drag or feel confusing?
It never really dragged but there was some bits that were confusing. When the chiken first explains about the prison city it felt odd that Stephen wouldn't know if it/ a little like possibly forced exposition with some of his questions it may have been better to save it for when he admits to knowing where Boston was taken. Also how did the chicken know his other friend ended up there or get the photo? When they drive out to the city them conveniently getting stuck in a random hole right next to the tunnel entrance the car was at is probably not the best way for him to find an entrance as it feels very forced. When the chicken tries to stop Stephen it feels a bit odd too and makes me wonder what his plan was otherwise and why he even bothered bringing him there. A but later I didn't feel it was clear why the cat felt society would see her as a criminal despite having no criminal record and just one of being made a victim. People don't know what happens inside the city either so it wouldn't be anything after she entered. Another confusing part was when they ran into the people with the medical supplies in the ally. How did he know what they were, why would they rake random pills next to dangerous needles, what really was the point of that? There was also one time where he waa chasing down the guinea pig. He put down his backpack since he was tired and went with just his gun I think, but had the backpack again later. Lastly this isn't really a point if confusion but maybe some mention of Boston knowing/having seen that death by turning down the assassins would be worse than normal, since he just made it sound like he expected to die normally but later said killing Stephan would have been a mercy. I get though that it being a normal death he was faced with could lead to further Stephan's disgust.

4) What do you think the overall message of the story was?
I think it's about figuring out what's worth dying for and what makes life worth living. I guess the message could be that never taking risks and following strict limiting expectations isn't actually healthy or even necessarily the moral choice. Maybe to decide fir yourself what feels right.

5) Any suggestions on improving the overall story? (Most important)
Mostly just making things clearer in places and avoiding things that feel like forced exposition or forced progression. I enjoyed it overall. It's an interesting read and it would be neat to see where it goes.
 
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