Vreeah

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  1. I like what this foreshadows. The cover is enough for me, since I usually don't buy the cool extras until I'm already a fan. That said, I'm attracted to pretty or durable display objects. Metal wire art/figurines, paperweights (or anything with some weight to it), and jewelry are my favorites. They don't really need to be for sale to draw me over. I wander by and idle if there's something uncommon. Some nice atmospheric music is a big plus. A short blurb printed on the walls would be convenient—something that tells me more about the genre and story without having me crack open a book.
  2. Oh yay, congrats Silk! I'm always happy to see Asiatic examination. --- I like trains. Underwater tunnels scare me a little bit, but otherwise, the feeling of the world zipping beneath my feet without end is wonderful.
  3. Hm. Genre has some effect on it. I don't read a big enough pool of different genres to comment any more on that, though. --- Personally My written conversations tend to revolve around two people at a time. If it's an extended conversation, I abandon the tags soon after they get going. Don't really need anything colorful if none of the characters are being sarcastic, or saying lines that have multiple meanings in the current context. Most of the time, though, I have dialogue taking place while there are other things going on. After the characters speak a few lines, I write their actions and dialogue together. It relies a bit on line structure, but works. When someone doesn't answer with any words or actions, I need to use "said" to show that the same character is speaking. If it's still an extended conversation, but more than two people are involved, I have to use "said" a lot while the characters are talking irregularly. I can abandon the tags if they talk long enough for the speaker to be obvious every time, but I'm not good enough yet to do this very much. I also insert "said" into the middle of a line of dialogue when I want a long pause there. Punctuation does the same job, and I switch between the two at random. For short bursts of dialogue that pop in like dandelions, I use descriptive tags more often. Its easier to write emotions from dialogue alone if I have enough to work with, but many of my readers interpret short bits of dialogue very differently from one another. A "she snapped back" saves me from having a third my readers think a character is angry, another third think that same character was being kind, and the remaining third with some more interpretations I never considered. No tags when crowds are shouting a bunch of things. It's confusing and impersonal in real life, so it feels right when it's also happening in a story. --- Observations Funny enough, I'm currently reading a fantasy/romance story with a magically mute main character (The Bird and the Sword, by Amy Harmon), so analyzing how tags are used in that might be counterproductive. There are plenty of descriptive tags in here, though, for the record. The dialogue format of Orson Scott Card's Ender's Game is direct. From what I can tell, the tags are often dropped once characters start talking predictably, taking turns. Most tags are the simple sort (said, asked, shrugged, grinned, and told). When lots of peopel are talking, "said" is sprinkled everywhere. Some chapters start off with an exchange that has no name or tags, so you need to guess at who's talking. Oh! He doesn't used "replied" in this book, I never noticed that. Cool. Probably not a good idea to apply what's in Jane Austen's books, with how much the market has definitely changed since then. That said, it isn't all that different. There's more "said she, warmly" and "he warmly replied" rather than the modern "she said, softly" and such. In fact, I think the word "warmly" is nonexistent in both The Bird and the Sword and Ender's Game. It's used in The Star-Touched Queen and The Name of the Wind, but never to describe dialogue. In the same way, "softly" doesn't exist in Sense and Sensibility, but it does mention how hearts soften. I wonder if using "warmly" to describe a voice has mostly died out, though I doubt it. Anyway, digging a bit too deep into the rabbit hole. I'll leave it here for now.
  4. Good day! Whoa, I remember reading the first version, and this new beginning is more sudden. It doesn't work as well for me. Charlotte's gloomy reaction to the doctor's words was an emotion beat, but it slipped right by me when Charlotte herself wasn't established first. Like seeing a stop sign before you know you're driving. The ending is still quite sudden. There's more closure since a choice was made, but there's an odd lack of turmoil. Some of my stray, leftover questions linger with a bigger impression than the choice at the end. I wonder about the contents of the letter Charlotte left for her brother. All the crazed wall-writing also made me think this pill is a scheme to make sure that voluntary, justified murder is the last thing Charlotte does. I expected some deeper consideration. Reasons be damned, she clung to life for a long while. I didn't expect her to give up without any doubts when on the border of death. She was so ready to trust the word of a stranger offering her a dubious choice. There were two choices. One was obviously more selfless than the other, so it played like a cruel experiment. Walking straight toward the selfless choice is heroic, but this seems like a story meant more for introspection than virtue.
  5. This is Alternatim, and its purpose is to show who Sofia is. --- It's a week for revelations. Cheers!
  6. Oh! Hello modern era, I did not expect you to visit. You described how the aunt pronounced "house" and "out" near the beginning of the fourth page, but it looks like you took out the word "out" from her dialogue at some point. Anyway, on to the story itself. The beginning, with its emphasis on cold, made me think of ghosts. When the character's aunt showed up, I was certain one of the two was actually dead. The mentions about the collection kept by this viewpoint character was odd enough to think of something more ominous. For a time I had the impression that the viewpoint character was a killer of some sort who was haunted by victims. The Tell-Tale Heart sprang to mind. In the final two pages, though, I figured out that it wasn't such a dark story. Not dark in the way I'm thinking, at least, since the aunt is unquestionably dead. I'm expecting him to arrive in another universe that's less modern. Wild speculation on my part. Overall, it starts with a very creepy tone. The tone leaked into my impressions on the genre and the viewpoint character's personality, and I'm now unsure of how dark or light the rest of the story will be. Good overall hook. If it turns out to be a fantasy, I'd guess it's a very high stakes fantasy. From how the chapter ends, I'm almost certain that this entire universe froze over.
  7. Sure. I'd love to pop in.
  8. Oh my gods it's so sparkly and smooth.
  9. Hiya, Neongrey! Mm, first off with the revisions to chapter eight. Most of it reads the same as last time. I'd say the most prominent change is how much kinder Savae comes off as. By that, I mean that they're still not kind, but a lot less outright mean. Kathalania's lines are also much easier to understand this time around, and she is noticeably less timid when she's upset. The idea that the design wasn't meant to be jewelry was outright stated this time, which replaced confusion with a question of what the design actually was. More intriguing. Chapter nine was nice and bittersweet. I felt a great well of pity when I reached the small time skip, and had a small smile by the end. I'd say the sorrow and pity outweigh the hope and joy. More bitter than sweet. Plus marks there if that's the intentional setup. Drawing attention to the melodrama and then knowingly continuing off of it definitely stirs up more pity than relief. The implication is that she desperately doesn't want things to end in an argument, so she's keeping true to her word—even though she immediately stumbled after she brought it up the first time.
  10. Hello folks! Hope the year is off to a good start for y'all. I've written two shorter chapters this week. They're mostly here to set things up, more or less. I feel odd this week—not exactly about the chapters, but my head is light and fuzzy. I can't put my finger on why. I honestly just gave Ellis a headache because my head's in a weird place. Uh, I'm not sure why I went on about that, but there ya go. Please let me know what you think!
  11. The character garnered plenty of sympathy. There's enough of a connection for me to feel bad about how she'll end up after the letter. I haven't seen that side of her, yet, but it's enough to hit me with a shred of dread. Other than that, the atmosphere is somber. Draining and sad. I'm pretty sure that was the idea, so I'll put a plus there as well. It is noticeably rough, as you've pointed out. There were a few parts here and there that lost me completely. I skipped those parts and began the next paragraph, and there was enough information for me to get an idea of what's going on. The parts that lost me were mostly in the first and last page. I found it odd how the slur was "outland trash". It's a bit long and too on the nose. I'm surprised there wasn't a shortened slur, and was also thrown off a bit by the chain of events involving that term. Specifically, Lyan thinks up that slur to accompany the shopkeeper's tone and expression. Then, afterwards, the boy repeats the exact slur that she thought. It counts as a coincidence, so it wasn't a bother, but it was something that caught my eye.
  12. Hah, congratulations! I eagerly await the day I can be terrified by the same thing.
  13. Sure. It's been a heavy work week, but I have a short chapter I can parade.
  14. It's a brand new year, full of possibilities! This is chapter 5 of Dreamt and Lost, and Lothurn's viewpoint is front and center. The main purpose is to give an idea of Lothurn's history, and well as establish what Silla wants. If that doesn't come across clearly, please let me know which places I lose you! Thanks for taking the time to read!
  15. And finally, it's time to circle back here. Thank you guys so much for the gifts of perspective! I read these whenever they popped up, so the insights have all been a help for the bits of writing I got around to this week. Sorry my response was late in coming. --- @Mandamon I think this is the first time Lothurn has appeared on this group, so it isn't WRS at work. I'll see about adding more hints to his personality and presence when they come to mind. When I first conceived the story, Sofia's secret was meant for a later reveal. However, nearly every line that hinted at it was marked as a bad line of characterization, and I think Sofia's likeability suffered from it. I'm at a loss. The dialogue could stand for some reworking. Will do. As for Lothurn taking Kaisan out so easily, that was intentional. Ellis and Sofia were casually using dreams the same age and older than Kaisan, so Lothurn wouldn't be much of a threat if he couldn't handle the situation with ease. The part about freezing the children is also meant to be a small bit of foreshadowing that Lothurn isn't a shining hero. He didn't care about the consequence of dying children, so he confidently took the shot. I figured the conclusion with the townsfolk was clunky. That definitely needs reworking. I knew the townsfolk had to do something by the end, but Lothurn didn't need to be there any longer. She carried the body with her to prove she had the power of revival, instead of having to rely on claims and promises. Yep, it's the same blue slime. I tried to imply that the eye from the first chapter was from silver fur dream, since it has some large and empty eye sockets. Not sure if that got across. Gotcha, need better character leads. Might need a different opening, then. Sofia's abilities can't be seen by anyone except Ellis, since a public revelation leads to other points of plot progression. --- @kaisa Yeah, unblanding these characters is currently the highest priority. Can't have as good of a story if the characters can't carry it on their shoulders. Better opening line, eh? I originally led with how Lothurn was carrying around a nightmare in his heart, but I thought it might've been too heavy. Maybe worth reconsidering. Glad the one on one dream duel sat well! Blocking? Oh, is the acting character muddled at these parts? I'll be sure to fix that. I suspect the passive voice that Mandamon pointed out also might be involved. I'd better draw a map of what's happening in the fight beforehand and figure out a better visualization. Ugh, I don't think I can do much about the motivation without altering a pretty big chain of events. I'll keep going for a few chapters and hope the details help, but if not, it'll take some rethinking. Yay! Connection noticed! ♥ Ah, yeah, might have been suggesting the wrong stuff when I emphasized the blue slime. I meant to imply that it was extremely deadly, but mostly to highlight how different Sofia is and how much trouble all the other blue slime victims were in. I'm considering inserting a glimpse into the medical ward. --- @r.topaz It was a big help, R.topaz! Thanks for coming and reading ^_^! A better hook? Yarrr, that I do. Got a couple ideas, some old and some new. I'll play around with them. Ah, sorry, the bad guy this chapter was mostly an introductory device. It was a melting pot where I showed how dreams strengthen by age, Lothurn's competence, what permanent effects might be left by dreams, how dreams have an obsession with what caused them to be born in the first place, and Lothurn's personal baggage. Oh, esprit is a word meaning spirit and liveliness of intellect, and I use the word to represent the energy that forms these dreams. Yeah that was my bad. I got so into the events of the town and I realized that the town resolution was less satisfying. Improvements planned. Oh yes. The blue slime got on Sofia in one of the previous chapters, and I was using the end of this chapter to show what was supposed to happen when an average person gets a high dosage of the stuff. Thanks again! --- @neongrey Hm. I did intend the opening lines to have meaning behind them, but having them give off that impression is troublesome. -The first line about the glow of dawn was to imply the time being morning, so that this chapter is confirmed to be happening at the same time as the first chapter's morning awakening. -I referred to the town as being like shambles to show that the town wasn't at the heart of civilization. I wanted it to seem like the outskirts of society, much like how Lothurn had removed himself from others. -The memory in his heart is the weapon he uses later, as well as his motivation and history. -The cold wind is the enemy he is vanquishing today. Though I do intend to rework the opening to have a better hook, I still want to imply all the things above. Ah, but "cold elements" does fall too far outside the norm. I'll fix that. Stilted is the complete opposite of what I was going for, so that's another big problem. The anarch is meant to be materialized resentment—wild and narrow-minded. Half its matured mind is permanently obsessed with whatever thoughts led it to be born in the first place. I'll see if I can break up his speech pattern some more and get a touch insane in terms of how much he resents the townsfolk. Lothurn, on the other hand, should be gruff and stoic. Narrow-minded in his own way, and a victim of tunnel vision for far too long. That also doesn't seem to be coming across, so it'll be a work in progress. Drat. Is the non-nebulous writing too clunky? Or too sharp of a contrast? I think I emphasized Krisan's power too much. I meant to show how powerful a dream of this age can be, while also showing that Lothurn is far above it, but a lot of people expected more from Krisan. Yeah, it was intentionally formal, but I'll see about slimming things down. Ah dang. Which cliches am I hitting? I'll do what I can about that. Rebirth and revival are central themes, so death is rather important for me to keep, but if it's killing the story then I'm more than willing to sit down with the outline for a few weeks. Character remains the top priority, but these are all dangerous problems to watch out for. It's giving me some nervous excitement. --- @rdpulfer The resolution at the town is one of my big holes right now. I spent so long on the first half and didn't built up much closure. I'm considering a quick visit to the medical ward on that chapter. Might work out better. Silla and Lothurn working together is really important, so I'm happy it landed well for you! --- @Yados I certainly am in love with the setting of the story, and can't wait for the characters to move away from their starting points. That said, there is a plot that covers all the characters so far, so I'm sorry to say that it won't be completely separate. It's more like a couple story paths that keep converging in on each other, mixing, and then bursting apart. The idea of declaring her position was mostly meant as an olive branch. I wanted the offer of employment to seem as genuine and friendly as possible, despite the extent of surveillance that will be shown very soon. Though the scene played out fine enough, it hasn't done the characterization I planned. I'll weed out the sense of nobility as I come across it.