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A modest ritual

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Letrune

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« on: 02:36:11 AM 07/16/17 »
Hi guys. I got you a ritual to be done and I presume you all will love it. I know how much you all love rituals… Without further ado, let’s see!

Rules:
The moment you start this ritual, you can not stop it.
Do not record it.
Do not use any electronics.
Do not use cheap substitutes.
Do not start it if you are believing in a few specific things. These are: slavic gods, celtic myths, cajun and polynesian gods, hollow Earth and suffragettes.
You have to perform the ritual every year.
You have to keep tabs on your possessions during the ritual!

If anyone else feels that after the ritual they are unable to move their index fingers or such random, seemingly unrelated punishment, it is because of these rules were ignored.

Items you need:
Mechanical clock
Candles and matches (maybe some lighter works as well).
Water, bread.
Something you believe in.

The ritual
Get a mechanical clock. When it strikes twelve, start packing candles around your house’s corners, and light one every hour.
When you got all rooms lit by candles, get another one and move into a room darkened. It should be done at 11:45 PM, in your local time. If there are windows, board them, and securely lock a door. You can have bread and water with yourself but nothing else!

Keep a mirror close and some jam handy. If you feel like the ritual failed, throw some jam at the mirror. If it sticks, you had failed. You may try to remain in the room and light as many candles as you can, but if you can not hear the clock striking two, it is over.

After you got in the room, get a secure and comfortable place in it somewhere. Be careful not to burn yourself or the furniture - a concrete room without furniture works best. Ventillation may be needed.

After the clock strikes midnight, every step is crucial. When the striking stops, light a candle and hold it above a platter. The wax should land in a shape of something you and only you recognize. When the candle is burned halfway, put it down and do not move it.
Start to hum the tune you feel the most appropiate. It is important. If the tune stops, you may not hear anything and that of the sign of great tragedy.

Get the most powerful idol in your life ready. It can be a photocopy of it, the real deal, home made, it does not matters, your belief does. Keep humming while you kiss it or rub your face to it.
The clock should strike half past midnight. Stop anything you do and remain so until the clock strikes one. If you absolutely have to move, repeat the humming forst forward, then in reverse or start licking the idol. Maybe not “or” but “and”. We got to be careful!

If you performed this part well, test if the ritual worked with the jam. It should slide off the mirror and reveal a different world in it.
If it does not happens, hum in reverse, hop on one leg four times, then try to sing “I’m a little teapot”. It may sound stupid but it surely works - if anyone else finds a better solution to negate all negative effects, note me.

If it worked, you can see a different world in the mirror. It should show you an odd version of the room you are in and an alien version of you. Kiss the mirror, then put it on the floor, stand on it or, if you are too heavy, sit down next to it and keep it down. It is crucial that now you keep it facing down.

The clock should strike two soon. You can eat or drink and maybe even go to a bathroom break but the mirror should face down. After the clock strikes, you made it!

Now you only got to clean up after yourself.

The dangers
If you failed at any time or deliberately ignored the rules, you may start noticing your life changing. Erratic behaviour, stress, bile, being depressed - all are signs of the Wrong Choice. You will go down a horrible road that leads to your life being totally ruined. After this, a sudden cold feeling, coughing fits and dry throat happens most usually, but some had heat strokes. Their mood worsens and they may become very aggressive.
Usually, this is where you get stuck and wish at times you would be already dead. It is a phase only - you will wish death on others soon. Some may even do so if they get the chance… US citizens go on shooting spree, but less gun-filled spaces have stabbings, chokings, even hangings with belts and I heard once that someone did ritual sacrifices to appease some unrelated demon. Of course it failed.

There won’t be a way out,  unless you manage to do the ritual well.

Reward
You can keep your life. You may live for a year or so without issues from that direction, and that is a good way. Be happy you got that.

(I wonder how many would try...)

lavecki

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« Reply #1 on: 02:06:50 PM 08/02/17 »
So the story was alright, but didn’t really have an impactful end. Let’s start with the “Rules” section. As listed:

The moment you start this ritual you cannot stop it
Do not record it
Do not use any electronics
Do not use cheap substitutes
Do not start it if you are believing in a few specific things. These are: Slavic Gods, Celtic Myths, Cajun and Polynesian Gods, Hollow Earth, and Suffragettes
You have to perform the ritual every year
You have to keep tabs on your possessions during the ritual!

So right from the start there are a few issues. Main issue is rule 1: The moment you start you cannot stop. At this point we have no reason to start the ritual because we don’t know what it is for. The first thing that you want to establish in ritual pasta is what the purpose of the ritual is. From my reading of the story it appears that it might be for eternal life, or at least to stave off death.

Most of the other rules make sense. I would shorten “Do not start it if you are believing in a few specific things. These are: Slavic Gods, Celtic Myths, Cajun and Polynesian Gods, Hollow Earth, and Suffragettes” to “Do not perform this ritual if you believe in: Slavic Gods, Celtic Myths, Cajun and Polynesian Gods, Hollow Earth, and Suffragettes” I really like the “Suffragettes” part because it’s the only one here that is a real life provable thing, it adds to the story for the why factor. I would also probably change the last two so that they are shortened: “You have to perform the ritual every year” becomes “The ritual must be performed yearly” and “You have to keep tabs on your possessions during the ritual!” becomes “Make sure you know where your possessions are at all times”

The next part is neat because, and I don’t know if this is intentional or not, you put “If anyone else” which implies that our narrator is unable to move their index fingers. I would take out “or such random Seemingly unrelated punishments” and add more actual examples of what can occur. “it is because at least one of these rules were ignored” fix the sentence up a bit.

Moving on to the items you need section we are given 4 objects: Mechanical Clock, Candles and Matches/ Lighter, Water and Bread, Something you believe in. There is a bit of an issue here because later in the story you also state that having Jam would be good to have as well as you need a mirror that can be laid down flat. The “Something you believe in” also appears to need to be a physical object if I read the rest of the story correct “Get the most powerful idol in your life ready. It can be a photocopy of it, the real deal, homemade, it does not matter, your belief does.”  So there are just some inaccuracies there. What I would do instead is get rid of the list and just work it into your narrative, same thing with the above rules. By working these into the narrative instead of just listing them out you have more control over them. For instance if I were to write it out instead of the list I might do something like this:

This ritual is very exact and can only be performed by those with…particular beliefs. Do not attempt this if you believe in any of the following: Slavic Gods, Celtic Myths, Cajun and Polynesian Gods, Hollow Earth, and Suffragettes, the results can be…disastrous. Additionally once this ritual has started there is no safe way to stop it, you must continue to the end, stopping for any reasons will result in a family member stumbling upon your empty husk of a body. You have been warned.

I think that gets my point across as to what you should be going for. As far as the ritual itself goes, there are a lot of inaccuracies. First it states that when the clock strikes 12 we need to start, but that a later step needs to be performed at 11:45. We are not allowed to have anything but bread and water, but jam also needs to be kept close.

The jam section seems to be out of place as it talks about what to do if we feel like the ritual failed, but at that point we still haven’t even started. This would go well in a spot where the ritual may have failed as you did later in the story.  The next paragraph talks about  being in a concrete room without furniture so that we don’t burn ourselves, but has not told us to light anything in this room yet.

Again the clock has struck 12 which seems to make this section start after the 11:45 part put I don’t know if I am able to perform the 12 o clock steps from before or not. “Every step is crucial” is not needed, actually the whole first sentence of the fourth “Ritual” paragraph isnt needed, I would just get rid of it, re-order your story so that the ritual performer is in the room at 12 and continue from there.

Next you ask the participant to start humming and if they stop they may not hear anything and it is a sign of great tragedy. This either should be removed or expounded upon. What kind of tragedy, what happens to people who stop humming etc. Also, there isnt any section that talks of what kind of candle to use. So if I use a 5 hour candle and have to wait until it is burned halfway, it will be 2:30 by the time that happens.

After that we come to the “Idol”. We have to kiss or rub our face against this idol while we hum, ok. But we need to do it until 12:30, then we freeze until 1. If for some reason we have to move during that 30 minute period we must hum again put then reverse our humming and lick the idol. This part seems very out of place an I am unsure of the intent of it. The same goes with the second part where you must hum in reverse hop on one leg and sing Im a little teapot. I understand that it is supposed to counter the negative effects but you should try to come up with something similar. For instance I would say if the jam sticks and doesn’t slide away you must now cover the entire mirror with jam and wait until 2.

The last section here talks about the other world and placing the mirror face down. I would advise you to not let the person leave the room. Also if standing on it is not necessary (most people are too heavy to stand on a mirror without it breaking) then I would remove that section as well.

The dangers section: This section should be worked into the narrative as well. Possibly as side effects of specific beliefs or when certain steps go wrong. The different phases also don’t make too much sense. Basically if the ritual fails you will become erratic and have thoughts of suicide or murder and will eventually act on those impulses. You can give examples sure, such as you did in the second paragraph but I think it is unecesary. I would just boil it down like I did above and not make it its own section, maybe add something like “I hope you aren’t near your loved ones when that happens”.

“There wont be a way out, unless you manage to do the ritual well” Uneccesary get rid of it.

Reward section: This seems to be saying “You get to live for another year.” Which would make sense if someone was dying of something, again, I would add this at the start. People need to have the incentive for why they are performing the ritual.

Summation: the story has a few problems but not anything that isnt readily fixable. What you want to do is entice people to try the ritual and then lead them into problems that they might encounter. There should be a clear reason for why people would want to try a ritual that might get them or others killed so you need to keep that in mind at all times when writing it. Don’t make the cost higher than the reward. If you want to I can be even more detailed and go line by line but I do feel it is important for you to do your own writing as that’s the only way to improve. I understand that English is not your first language and I tried to help out there where I could as well.  For a great ritual pasta that might help with improving the writing look to “The Devil Game” by InfernalNightmare333, it is a fantastic example of ritual pasta done right. Please also note that this is all meant as a suggestion and you can choose to listen or not as it is your story not mine.

Keep writing. - Lavecki

Letrune

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« Reply #2 on: 10:47:56 AM 08/06/17 »
Thank you. :3 Now that I listened to the suggested story and read it myself, i feel like it beaten me in the execution amd the idea. If I rework it into a more comedic piece, could it work?

lavecki

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« Reply #3 on: 05:00:51 PM 08/07/17 »
It probably could. Im not sure how to work it for a comedic impact. What you could probably do is be more forceful with the strict rules you want, that you inevitably break. Then make sure that there is something that the ritual acomplishes but make it be something that no one would ever really want/isnt worth the negatives: Experiance true happiness for .05 seconds, Choose the way you die but no the when. Things that dont have a good reason for you to want.