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Did I wax too poetically in this feature?

Discussion in 'Writers' Workshop' started by Angola!, Feb 22, 2007.

  1. Angola!

    Angola! Guest

    He can dribble, shoot and defend.
    He can slash and cut.
    He can also play mind games and generally wreak havoc.
    His opposition just wants him to go away.
    His teammates wish he was just a sophomore.
    The only thing that is for sure is Jimmy Smith can’t be pigeon-holed as a certain type of basketball player.
    “(When I first saw him) I was very impressed,” first-year Washington High head coach Dan Wilson said. “He is 6-foot-5, but he plays more like 6-7 or 6-8 with his arm span.
    “He is very deceptive; he just kind of glides around the court. You can just watch him set people up for situations and they fall for it and he goes the other way with the ball.”
    Smith has been many things in his career with the Bulldogs. He has started on varsity the last two years, as a point guard his junior year and as a little bit of everything his senior season.
    He can run the point, play wing and post players up, yet just like all of the good players he is more than just a scorer.
    “I’m glad he’s graduating,” Taft High head coach Willie Groves said. “He is a great defensive player, rebounds well and handles the ball. I love him as a player.
    “When you play Washington High you have to make your game plan around him. He’s not the only one you talk about, but he is the first one.”
    Last season, Smith was more of a complimentary scorer to Michael Johnson. He could concentrate more on his passing and defense.
    This season, Smith has had to be a scorer, as well as a passer, defender and a new role: Leader.
    “I like being a leader,” Smith said. “I don’t really yell at people in practice, but if I see someone not working hard I will let them know.
    “I am more of a leader by example.”
    Now, the senior will attempt to lead his team on a run worthy of the history annuls of Washington High basketball.
    “There will be times I have to step up and take over the game,” he said. “But we can’t win unless the whole team plays. If we play as a team we’ll win.”
    It was in the bi-district victory over Jefferson High (67-48) last season that started the 2006 Bulldogs team on its way to a regional semifinals berth.
    Smith thinks tonight could be a similar launching point.
    “We have a chance to go as far as last year,” he said. “If we get it together we can get a win, and if we do we’ll have the confidence to go far.”
  2. dawgpounddiehard

    dawgpounddiehard Active Member

    I think it was a fine story, but not as special as it could have been. It seems like it just skimmed the surface.

    Not sure how much time you had to write this, but after reading it one sentence stood out to me:

    "He can also play mind games and generally wreak havoc."

    Play mind games? What exactly does he do? Provide an example or moment when this occurred and that could be lede. Then tie that into how he's wreaking havoc by being a do-it-all for Podunk High.

    Anyway, that's my two cents in hindsight...
  3. Angola!

    Angola! Guest

    You are right, I should have expanded on that. I had a quote from the coach about how he sets up players to think there is a passing lane and then steps in and makes the steal.
    I only had about an hour to do the story, but that isn't really an excuse.
    Thanks for the insight.
  4. friend of the friendless

    friend of the friendless Active Member

    Mr !

    The five rimshots at the top would be better as three. A little bit less to get to the guy & story.

    And it would be nice of there were anecdotal / scenic elements. That said, I don't know what you're up against length-wise.

    YHS, etc
  5. m2spts

    m2spts Member

    I only needed to read the first three paragraphs.
    Perhaps you could have intersperced the more colorful aspects throughout the story some way.
    Good selection of quotes, but try to mix your non-quotes with your quotes, rather than bunch them together.
    Also, don't let the coaches, fans, etc., build the kid too much. If you say it all now, what will you say later?
  6. Angola!

    Angola! Guest

    Well, one reason I gave him such a glowing review was because it was before a playoff game they were likely to lose, hence their final game of the season.
  7. devodian

    devodian New Member

    Show us don't tell us. How does he dribble, shoot, pass etc? More detail would bring more life to this. I think you're bordering on too many quotes as well.
  8. Angola!

    Angola! Guest

    Thanks for the responses.
    I agree with whichever poster said I should have spread out the statements I made at the beginning of the story. That could have read better.
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