|The Phantom Critic's Chopping Block |
|Somewhere deep in the middle of the thickest part of the woods lies an eerie barren clearing about 50 feet in diameter where no life grows. In the center of rests a single dead tree stump with many gashes. |
|Beings of a magical nature may detect the bluish ghost-like image of an axe wedged into the stump. There appears to be an assortment of trash blowing around the clearing with most of it concentrated in piles around the stump. Upon closer inspection, one notices that the trash consists entirely of scraps of paper, torn and crumpled-up in balls. Some have writing, some have drawings, some have both. All have been touched by the undead. Those who enter the clearing with no creative ambitions feel nothing unusual. But all who have heard the calling of the muse and have even the slightest drop of insecurity about their status as an "artist", experience a sudden chill that grows colder and colder as they approach the chopping block. For they know that in this place lurks one who will judge them, judge them not for how good they are as a person, how sexy they look in the mirror or what they may have accomplished in their life. Those who dare enter will be judged only by their artistic creations and how well their precious work can withstand... |
(cue rising spooky music)
The Phantom Critic's Chopping Block!!!
|The Origin Of Phantom Critic |
|I was once like you, a living flesh and blood creature whose passion was the arts. As a young man I was determined to share my visions with the world and bring happiness to all. || |
|But instead of joy, my creations brought nothing but years of rejection after rejection, turning my passion to poison...a dark bitter poison that caused me to strike out and tear down those who had achieved the success I so desperately wanted. Eventually the poison ravaged my physical form and left me as an insubstantial wraith... |
|...neither fully living nor fully dead, no longer capable of creation or destruction, merely commentary. My sins were so heinous, that my spirit could not even ascend to the higher planes. And so I am doomed to remain a phantom among mortals until I can purge my soul of its wickedness. |
|But there is still hope for me. Though nearly all aspects of my humanity are lost, two virtues remain--a sharp critical mind and complete honesty of expression. If you have creations, be they visual, narrative, or both, you may bring them to |
THE CHOPPING BLOCK
and I will subject them to my cosmic cleaver. I will attempt to critique without jealousy or bitterness, for those are the poisons I must purge. It is only through criticism that I have any chance to escape this prison. I expect to make no friends, for my commentary will be cutting and efficient with no frosting of flattery. But those who dare present their precious creations to The Phantom Critic may discover that they leave The Chopping Block with an even greater grasp of their blessed gifts.