Robinski

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About Robinski

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    Glasgow, Scotland

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  1. I try to give my characters one dominant trait that marks them apart, that tends to drive everything else, inform their reactions to everything and everyone, and thereafter gives the reader something to latch onto that makes your m/c more clearly identifiable. Qrk is somewhat pretentious, but has the sophistication and intellect to back it up. Admitting that I have some work to do an character consistency in TMM, that then gives him a clear through line. Ann did have a kind of angry/frustrated detachment, I thought I sensed, although it wasn't heavily played, but Hen's reactions were much more predictable man-with-sword. There are any number of things that you could consider. Not knowing where the story is going, but to throw out some random thoughts: - make him blind in one eye; give him inner fear that he needs to conquer to do the right things; make him a cripple (I know these things have been done, but guaranteed your take on them is unlikely to be quite the same as known instances); maybe he's not actually that good with a sword - that would be a challenge to write, but could be really interesting; maybe he's deaf or dumb - I know that becomes a dominant factor in his scenes but, if he's not the only POV, it might be an interesting challenge. It would also make Ann have to 'work harder' in their scenes, which would bring her character out more. Just some random thoughts, to try to illustrate the importance, I think, of having characters that stand out. If they don't, I think they need to be doing something really, really interesting, and work so much harder to hold the readers' attention. You could have a thought from one or both about a parent, or young sibling. Or, you could drop a comment about it being the first (or second) time that Ann had 'dropped' crystals. There will be things that they haven't done before or places they haven't seen or have only seen one in their relatively short lives. It's not that hard to drop little clues. Or, you could have the POV character just come out a describe something in the other character, like Hen describing Ann still being marked with the lithe elegance of youth; not yet having reached the full flush of womanhood. Or, if we're in Ann's POV, Hen might be a year or two short of his full hight, or be lacking the hard edges that full adulthood brings... Urg, this is off-the-cuff of courser, and straight from Mills & Boon's big book of fromage, but hopefully you see what I mean. I think it's really important to get it established right at the start. I think it would be bad to find out that they're teens on Page 84, when the reader's been thinking these two characters are in their late 20's / early 30's for quarter of the book.
  2. That would be fine. I still have various notions roiling around in my brain about how to make something of it, like the co-author suggestion, which is very appealing, and what the third Q&M story might be (ideas were flowing on that prior to this), but time / 'dimensional' travel is not a thing that fits, really.
  3. Yes. I do believe I've had a go at that in my comments above. Yeah, I can't help feeling that the very simple statement about the nature of Sor's physiology should be presented much earlier.
  4. (rubs hands together) The aftermath of the storm, bring it on! “I needed to destroy something” – yes, reaction spot on. “Why couldn’t I be changed” – perfect, love the transmutation through line. “Mother was never affectionate but neither was she dismissive did she dismiss” – suggested for flow. · “To follow. That I was finally going home. -- I awoke, naked, atop a pile of wool blankets” – for me, this transition was uncomfortably sudden. Why not go for a chapter break? That would surprise the reader, because your chapters are fairly consistent, I think – but surprise them in a good way, to echo Sor’s disorientation. I just this switch of location needs a bigger break to be effective, and to completely change the pace. I rattled through the encounter with Mother, but I’m still rattling in the next scene, when I should be brought to an abrupt halt, I think. · “Magic had taken them away, it seemed, this chance to look older and more experienced” – I freakin’ LOVE this somewhat perverse desire to be damaged by previous events, to earn that badge. · “Enchant a broom so we didn’t have to sweep up?” – Lol, Fantasia – The Sorcerer’s Apprentice! Nice · “I hated the way the familiarly familiarity” – I know but still, less easy to spot. · “he had my wrists smashed into the bark” – I would say squashed, or crushed or pinned. Smashed is like a one-off strike, not on ongoing situation – imho. · “My held head fell forward” · Yeah, properly good hook at the end of the chapter, and nice job with the tattooing, the conflict around that, the resistance then the resignation. Part of me still thinks that they didn’t put a woodcutter tattoo on Sor at all, that they’re in the process of forcing the formation of a witches’ guild and that they have branded Sor accordingly, to be revealed to great amazement later, possibly when Sor next is with Magda. Strong chapter – more please. <R>
  5. Thanks for reading, RD - yeah, this is pretty much pure indulgence. I certainly didn't intend anything to actually happen - like a plot or anything On the out of character thing, I would say it's a well known fact that every bar in the northern hemisphere has an Australian working in it; and the corollary is true - there is a massive shortage of bar staff in Australia
  6. I also didn't really like that. It's not harsh enough, and it already has a 'slang' usage - albeit outdated, I think.
  7. I didn't get much sense of them being teens. There was action, certainly, but 'fast' is not a word I would use to describe it. There was always something happening, so pacing was good, I thought, but 'fast' to me is breathless a chase across the dunes, something with a time-critical element in it. The other way around, I think... Have a nice day yourself!
  8. Hey there! Great to have you back. On to the comments. I would use the character names more sparingly. In the second paragraph, you say Anna… 3 times, when one at least could (should) be ‘she’ – I think. Otherwise, it sounds so repetitive. I like the conflict early on, the fact that Anna is almost disgusted by the crystal. “I know that it takes a lot out of you.” – For me, this line is a bit ‘tell-y’. I know people say obvious stuff like that in the real world, but I'm reading to be entertained, and would prefer dialogue a bit less ‘on the nose’. “as she stared into the noon sun” – Hmm, suggests some superhuman power of some sort. Some of the tagging is confusing, like… Annabelle looked away. “It’s not your fault that some people are too superstitious to buy glowing crystals. We’ll make do with what we have.” The blocking throws me off a bit. The gateway is halfway to the town, far enough away that Hen can shout out loud and they don’t hear him, but when he attacks, he’s on top of the soldier almost instantly. I’m hoping, like most readers I'm sure, to be surprised and intrigued, on a fairly regular basis. I haven’t really been feeling that so far. The magic seems fairly standard, although I do like the selling of the crystals. The dialogue too has been a little staid, and a bit exposition-y. The first slight twist was the foreign soldiers not attacking the town, which was good, and then the boy being in charge. Also, they seem to go with the enemy rather easily. I'd like to see some frustration, or resignation. To me, the term “military fort” is redundant. All forts are military, surely. “Yes, Nar, Hen thought” – I don’t mind Hen underlining his words in thought, but him explaining what he thought, when I already understood it felt… unnecessary. “soft thuds on the stone stairs” – personally, this sounds more like walking on wooden boards to me. I would not expect stone to thud, but maybe to scuff or scratch, even tap. “And he comes from our home?” – is this a question? I don’t get it, surely the general knows where the boy came from better than Hen. I like the ending, surprising but inevitable somehow and really quite dramatic. Also, there a decent mystery set up here as to why they want this particular town. This is something I want to know that answer to now, so that’s good. I’m thinking that the piece in general could be ‘magnified’, I feel like there’s an emotional spark missing, the dialogue being a bit dry in places. But, there’s a nice tone and pace to, I thought. A though more descriptiveness in the work choice in places would give me more sense of place, I think. Another part of it is the main characterisation, I think. Like I want to know something more about Hen and Anna, stuff that sets them apart from being standard heroic guy and gal. They some unflawed, and not afraid and really challenged by events so far. Anna’s problem with the crystals and her sharp words were a good start, but didn’t really continue into the piece. Overall, I quite enjoyed it and would like to read more. <R>
  9. Great to see you back on and submitting. Comments. There’s some hard WRS going on and I’m struggling to remember the characters and how they fit together, but put that aside. I found it a little slow getting into the chapter past the description, but the dialogue is good. I like how the two are at issue with one another. Whispers are described beautifully, that bit really drew me in, and I really felt something of Sof’s character, her motivation. “Sof pulled aside her sister's hands and replaced them with her own” – I’m not quite sure what’s happening here., what they were holding or touching. “You know I hate waiting for results” – lol! “Your answers are terrible” – ha-ha. The ending is kind of cryptic and leaves me confused, because I don’t remember well where we got to before. Having said this, that problem, presumably, would be avoided by reading straight through. This short submission reminded me about the things that I enjoyed about this story before, the lightness of tone, the fairy-tale quality of the setting. I also remember that the thing I didn’t feel so well with the chapters I read before was a strong through-line of plot, until the ‘bad lady appeared’ which seemed to be quite far in. I’m totally keen to read more of this story. I do hope you submit more in the future and we get into the conflict proper. <R>
  10. So, for what it's worth, I've just completed one of the WE writing prompts that I've flagged to do on in Season 12, the one where you highlight promises to the reader in the first 10% of the story (~30 pages), then highlight your chapters / scenes going forward as they relate to those promises. It came out looking like this, and I felt like sharing it.
  11. Wait, wait, wait, wait.... what now? Did I miss something?! I'm leaning on Argentina (nominal) being closer to Columbia where a certain kind of powder comes from that's not instant coffee - perhaps it's a bit of a stretch. Aw, man, it's so exciting that people are digging this. All the while I was writing it over the weekend, I was like 'This is not what I should be spending my time on, this is a total distraction. I've got TMM to edit; I'm writing TCC; I've got 3 episodes of Writing Excuses to listen and note to keep on track to be caught up by December; and I've got 3 critiques coming on Monday.' But it was sooooooooo much fun. Time well spent
  12. I feel like it should be more... It would be a pleasure, and an honour! Lol. This does make me smile. I do then tend to run into the difficulty that's it's not exactly what I had planned for the first trilogy. Where would it fit in the Future Earth / Sorpsi cinematic universe, and other practical considerations? And you're planning to publish TWD, I assume, so the names would need to be changed. Rofl, so maybe it would be a Jerry Cornelius / Michael Moorcock / Eternal Champion sort of deal - with Mag as that traveller through the incarnations of man. (Look, @industrialistDragon, it's all connected!!!! ) Yup. Essentially because I'm not clear exactly on where / when / what @kais's story is set. Yes - "Montrachet is an Appellation d'origine contrôlée (AOC) and Grand Cru vineyard for white wine from Chardonnay in the Côte de Beaune subregion of Burgundy. Montrachet wines are the most expensive dry white wines in the world: prices can range from €150 to €2500 per 75 cl bottle."
  13. I really wanted to wait until @kais and I could post together, but, well, I didn't, so there. I've never written fanfic before, so I'm probably rubbish at it, and writing someone else's character is a weird privilege that feels like it should be illegal. No doubt I have crashed and burned, but it was sooooooooooooo much fun that I'm completely unapologetic. Except to say, Kais, I'm really, really sorry!!!!!!! It's total frippery. If measured on the scale of political correctness, I suspect they wouldn't let the courier with the submission into the building in which they measure political correctness before they place things on the scale. Comments? If you like, but I'm trying to play it for laughs, so I've probably just offended everyone, unless there are any Australians on here Cheers, Robinski