Serial Reflection: Becky

My last serial ‘Becky’ has now concluded. As I usually do, I am looking back on the process, and how it was received by readers.

Writing about a modern relationship was a new diversion for me, and as always, it started with an idea for the ending, and worked back. On this occasion, I slightly changed that ending, deciding to leave it open for the reader to draw their own conclusion.

One reader suggested (by email) that there should have been more dialogue, in the form of protracted converations. This is the familiar debate about ‘Show not tell’. I am not a professional writer, and have never really subscribed to that concept. So I carry on in the style that I am comfortable with, even though it might be ‘telling’, rather than ‘showing’.

Perhaps a few readers assumed that this story was semi-autobiographical? Other than the fact that I once lived with a nurse for some time, that was not the case. But some aspects did apply to one or other of my relationships over the years, and could also be identified by some of you from your own. Setting the story in London again was something of an easy option, as that makes it simpler for me to get a sense of place, and to judge distances and timings.

Despite my change of theme, ‘Becky’ was well-received, with 90-100 views for every episode so far, currently totalling 2850 for the thirty episodes. Engagement in the comments was satisfying too, with some readers discussing points with each other, something I always enjoy.

Some people didn’t enjoy the story, which is fine with me. Not everyone can like everything, or be expected to. And I appreciate that sticking with a long daily serial is a lot to ask for from anyone. But I would like to thank everyone who did, as well as those who shared episodes on social media, and commented on every one.

The complete story will be published soon, for those of you who prefer to read it as one long piece.

Best wishes to everyone, Pete.

36 thoughts on “Serial Reflection: Becky

  1. I must confess I’m pretty tired of all the writing advice. I read a recent blog post were people complained about old classics and the style they were written in. Well, styles change, but there’s also something to be said for people who prefer to tell the stories their own way, otherwise, if everybody shows and doesn’t tell, nobody uses adverbs, nobody uses dialogue tags but instead use action tags, all the stories are supposed to start right in the middle of the action, and every single word written must move forward the plot and the action… Well, we’ll all be reading the same story over and over, and there’s no worse hell than that. As you say, people might like it or not, but then, that’s perfectly fine. Thanks, Pete, and sorry for my rant.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Feel free to rant, Olga. I deliberately did not read ‘how to’ fiction-writing blogs, or suggestions. I keep dialogue to a minimum for the simple reason it is easier to type, and I like to read books that add detail by ‘telling’. That’s probably why I write in that way, but it works for me. 🙂
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Like

  2. I loved the idea and the execution of telling a story of a relationship from just one side. So often that is exactly how we learn about relationships. I rarely have heard both sides of any relationship story, and you captured that reality well as we just listened to him.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Elizabeth. I wanted to reflect that, something that happens all the time without us thinking about it. A couple experience problems, but we tend to only hear one version. And I didn’t call it ‘Frankie’, for that very reason.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Like Chris I found myself getting annoyed with both characters at some point and I really disliked Becky! I was hoping that Frankie would ditch her for good. As for dialogue. Wasn’t this supposedly a blog written by Frankie? Or have I got that wrong? Anyway, I for one was happy not to wade through the guts and gore of some of your previous serials, and at a time when I can’t concentrate on reading more than a couple of pages at a time, this kept me entertained. Thanks Pete, I really do admire your ability to write these. And I thank you for sharing them. Have you thought about going through some of your older ones and maybe editing them for republishing? I recall a good oldie about a travelling salesman? I know people can search through the archives, but rarely do.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Do you mean this one, about the salesman, Jude?
      https://beetleypete.com/2017/12/02/longer-stories-travelodge/
      ‘Becky’ was written on a blog by Frankie, so I thought much more dialogue was inappropriate.
      The latest serial has an element of ‘guts and gore’, so I hope you enjoy it. To be honest, I write all of these to keep my mind active. If anyone likes any of them, that’s a huge bonus. But when they pop into my mind, I always write them anyway.
      Best wishes, Pete. x

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, John. That’s just what I intend to do. But that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy and respect any feedback or criticism. That is always welcome.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Like

    1. Thanks for sticking with it all the same, Kim. Glad you were there for the ‘sly’ ending! 🙂
      It was an experiment for me, but I won’t be doing many more like this one, despite its popularity.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. First, congratulations for trying something new. I think that helps writers grow and keeps their minds stimulated. I am a big fan of dialogue, as I believe it is an opportunity to hear what characters sound like. That said, I always enjoy your serials for their imagination and unexpected twists. There is nothing worse than reading the first chapter of a book and knowing exactly where the author is heading.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your thoughts and opinion, Pete. I have had some dialogue in stories in the past, but tend to avoid it. It’s a ‘cheat’ really, as it makes the typing easier and faster! 🙂
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Like

  5. I think I prefer it without too much dialogue, ultimately its easier to follow which helps my simple mind 🙂 It also leave the reader in a better position to imagine the scenes which, to me, adds so much more to the enjoyment of reading. Nice one Pete, keep ’em coming 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I enjoyed it, and found myself getting quite annoyed with both characters at times, which is always a good sign that a reader is becoming ‘involved’ with the story, Pete.
    You’re right to carry on writing in the manner you are most comfortable with. 😃

    Liked by 1 person

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