Criteque of F*** My Girlfriend

Read full, unedited version of F*** My Girlfriend HERE.
Though the title has a certain amount of shock value, its name is more likely to alienate a lot of potential readers.

As for your writing, I found that it was lacking character development, quite a lot. All I know about your main character is that he’s picked up a job as a reporter out of country, tired, speaks some Spanish, overthinks things, owns a camera and laptop, doesn’t want to disrobe in the middle of nowhere and has no interest in taking up the mans request. I’d highly recommend adding him and his history in a little more.

I’m not going to go through and rewrite everything, but I’ve gone through a few choice sections and added bold text to ask questions as I went and ideas for adding some extra meat to your story and italics for how something may be reworded (With reasoning in these). I can see how this could be an interesting short story, just work on it!

      I’m jarred awake again on the same bus 83 hours later. Nothing has changed; the grey seat ahead of me with the same bouncing afro. I’m exhausted, but I vaguely remember someone telling me that I had gotten a job as a journalist. Tell me a little what he’s doing. His reasoning for coming is a great way to show your readers about his personality. I let my eyes close again and allow myself to dozed off; thinking to myself that I’d accidentally accepted a career as an eternal bus rider.
(Rewording was done to help readers have a better sense of the environment and to allow a better flow. Try reading it against yours, what do you think?)

I don’t remember waking Do you actually mean falling asleep? He’s recognizing very easily that he was asleep in one way or another. and I’m sure I never fell asleep for more than a moment. But like coming out of blackout drunkenness I was suddenly standing outside the bus in the middle of the jungle.

“Excuse me. Where are we?” The driver quickened his pace.“Hey! Where are we?” He turned. Turned where? to look at you?

“Wait here,” he said. His Portuguese was barely intelligible. He spoke as if simultaneously gargling creamy soup. I’ve never heard anything like this. Creating new ways to describe things is important to writing, but people have to be able to understand it in their head.  “Your bus will arrive at 3 in the afternoon.” So the bus driver speaks perfect English, but has a terrible accent and was just ignoring him before? I checked my phone. Dead.

He emerged from the wall of trees, dressed as a normal Brazilian man in his forties: jean shorts, a pink shirt with a collar and oversized black graphic, and ugly tennis shoes. I frowned at my mind’s inability to come up with interesting hallucinations. But then again, it wasn’t impossible that there was another man in this area, walking out of the jungle to greet me. why wasn’t it impossible? For him to just appear in the middle of nowhere is a captivating thing for your readers. If you want him to think it kinda possible, show the readers that he very much doubts it.  Perhaps he was just hiding away from the sun, lacking the cartoon-referencing paranoia that had stopped me from doing the same.

“What’s up,” he said, in perfect English; I had to be hallucinating. When he sat down next to me and I continued to stare at him, frowning. Was this normal for a hallucination? Then he patted me on the back and smiled. I realized I wasn’t hallucinating and chills ran so strongly from my head to the base of my spine that beads of sweat dove down my neck. “Do you speak English?” he asked. (Please think of ways to reword. It’s important not to overuse the same word. It takes away from your writing. You also like to state how your character is feeling and then describe it. You only need to do one or the other.)

This man was thick but muscular and would have had no trouble overtaking me. I had no interest in talking to him for a second longer, even less in doing him any sort of favor. You can’t let these kinds of people gain any momentum. What kind of people is he referring to? The person he’s interacting with is unique. Not someone I would be able to place into a stereotype. Help me know your main character a little more. Foreshadow a bias of somekind. Perhaps a memory of someone like this man which will allow me to understand who ‘these kind of people’ are to him.

“I’ll pay you one thousand dollars.” This was a laughable offer from 99 percent of all Brazilians, let alone this random man who appeared from nowhere. I felt better then. Maybe he was just mentally deficient and didn’t have any intentions of robbing, killing, or raping me. You haven’t really given any other indications that he could have a mental disorder or that he thought this guy might. Let your character be stronger here. He’s a smart guy (I assume) and overthinks things, from what I picked up about his changing into shorts ordeal. Follow your character, they wont always do exactly what you want. Plus this is a great place to continue your readers curiosity about this new character.

After you develop your characters a little more, you can work through their chit chat. I’m all for not over using he said, but you can add a lot after what they say with their physical actions and tones.

The bus churned forward and I watched the man walk into the forest through a cloud of dust. Give me his last impression of him, PLEASE! Is he worried he’ll see him again?  We hit a pothole and my head slammed against the window. I rubbed away the pain. Happy to see nothings changed I wished I would have taken his offer.Wait, why? He was 100% against it. Do you mean something like ‘A part of me wished that I’d have taken his offer; That I could believe it was real. If only to prevent an inevitable concussion.’

Overall I can really see the potential of this piece. You could even end it around the mystery of the man ever being real or leave the mystery of running into him again. Play some more with this piece, I’d love to see what you develop it into.


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