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Old 11-21-2014, 11:57 AM   #1
Steven Forbes
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TPG Week 204: Language Can Be A Barrier


Welcome back, one and all, to another installment of The Proving Grounds! This week, we have a new Brave One in Nanda Irfan Lauzan. We've got Liam Hayes in blue, I'm the guy in red, and we're going to see what Nanda has in

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PAGE ONE

PANEL ONE

The setting is in the old-palace. (That's vague at best. Describe the old palace.) (Hopefully, this location is described in a separate document. I'm thinking of something along the lines of the Xavier Institute of Higher Learning, or Avengers Tower (or, for old codgers like me, Avengers Mansion). However, more than likely, it's not a place that's going to be gone to time and again. This is just a roundabout way of saying that Liam is right and this is vague.) The sky is dark-red. Thunders sound painful as if it stabs a heart. (That line is prose. Wretched prose at that. It can't be drawn. Sound and feeling can't be drawn.) The ruins are everywhere but still have short stairs in there. There is no wind. Itís hard to breath. (Another thing that can't be drawn. You can show this, by having characters choking, but you havenít described that here.)

SFX: BLAR BLAR BLAR (I don't know what's causing these sound effects. I can't think of anything that makes noises like this.)

SFX (Human): HOSH HOSH (There's no human in the panel description. This is also sound I can't fathom.)

PANEL TWO

NOTE: Two superheroes have worn their own suit but theirs are affected by lightless impact.(I don't know what 'lightless impact' means.)

NOTE: Two superheroes are a girl and man. (Why isn't this in the panel description or a separate character sheet/document?)

NOTE: A girl, long-black-hair, wears full grey-uniform and thereís a grey sapphire in the middle of her chest but itís tight. Sheís 23 and 5.7 ft. She has sexy lips. Her pupils have different colors such as grey and blue. Sheís a sharp-nose.

NOTE: A man, medium-hair, wears kung fu-uniform. Its colors are black and gold. Itís rather tight. He has a tattoo in his face that is up and down his eyes. Heís an Indonesian-Chinese but he has white skin.
(What are these notes? They should be panel descriptions. Their separation is confusing.)

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Old 11-21-2014, 02:19 PM   #2
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Thanks for the edits Liam and Steven. I'm staggered that Nanda wanted this edited.

If you're not fluent in a language, why would you write in it? I don't get it.
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Old 11-21-2014, 02:23 PM   #3
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Actually, who am I kidding? The wife doesn't know how her husband takes his coffee?

That's nothing to do with writing in a different language. It's very bad writing, in every language.
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Old 11-21-2014, 02:40 PM   #4
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I think it was a combination of both. A lot of the descriptions made almost no sense in the English language. When its terribly obvious that English is your second, or third language, then you already have two strikes against you when trying to write for an English audience.
Then there was the bad writing...
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Old 11-21-2014, 04:38 PM   #5
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I'd disagree a bit on what steps to take first. I thought the writing, though showing some issues characteristic of when a writer's first language isn't English, also showed a poetic influence, and hinted that the writer is more experienced with prose. My recommendation would not be to "first learn the language better" but to use it more conservatively, using straightforward descriptions. Most of the confusing sections could be solved by simply reading more comics scripts and learning how information is better conveyed, particularly in panel descriptions. Dialogue writing is a separate skill, but dialogue can usually be edited fairly easily to sound more natural.
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Old 11-21-2014, 10:15 PM   #6
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Posting a script in another language... truly, Nanda is the bravest of the Brave Ones. Mind you, if you're going to go non-native then Japanese is the way to go. In an age where American comics struggle to get over 100,000 sales (this despite the profusion of creative talent out there, and the greater-than-ever interest following all those blockbuster moves), Japanese manga isn't struggling (as much).

It must be a nice feeling for Mr Forbes to know he's the go-to guy for people in other countries (in Nanda's case, based on the name, syntax, grammar, I'm going to say he/she's from mmmm Antarctica. There's a definite Emperor and Adelies-ness to the dialect; a certain Aurora Australis-ness to the SFX; a glacial icyness to the marriage scene that tells me the penguins down there would eat this story up).
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Old 11-23-2014, 01:34 AM   #7
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I think this script isn't good primarily because of the language barrier. Even researching script-writing and storytelling is going to be difficult, as I imagine most of the good resources are written in English.

I have to admit, I'm starting to miss seeing higher quality scripts in TPG. The decent ones are few and far between. I wonder if published clients of Steven's would mind having some pre-edit script pages put up for our benefit?
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Old 11-23-2014, 10:30 AM   #8
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I put my latest script's first draft up, it should be getting mauled some time in January.
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Old 11-24-2014, 01:11 PM   #9
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At least it was entertaining. The comments about writing in a second language have actually got me thinking- given that I stopped studying French at school at the age of 16 (17 years ago, for those keeping score), could I write a few pages of comic script in French that were better than this effort? I think perhaps I could, but mostly because I'd pay more attention to formatting and panel descriptions. It would be a fun contest, if anyone could judge it.
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Old 11-30-2014, 08:56 AM   #10
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Smile Thanks

I glad, finally, my comic script had been commented by you, Mr Forbes.

I'll fix it up then I'll send you again...
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Old 11-30-2014, 09:00 AM   #11
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Smile

oh yeahh... I'm from Indonesia..
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Old 12-08-2014, 06:20 AM   #12
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Good to see you on here Nanda and welcome to the forums.
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