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Robinski

Robinski - 180312 - TCC Chapter 3 - 4203 words (L)

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Hey everyone,

So, pressing ahead with resubmission, this is Chapter 3, but might become Chapter 2 again!! Whatever the case, it's more of the dysfunctional duo.

If you can remember back over the last couple of weeks, any comments on the ordering of chapters will be gratefully accepted, along with the usual stuff.

Many thanks for your consideration.

Best, Robinski

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I've sent you a file with LBLs as well.

I think this should definitely go back to being chapter 2. It follows through well from the first chapter and acts as a sequel to that scene. 


Notes while reading:
pg 3: There's a big infodump with the "what happened last time." I wonder if this could be added in piece by piece to be more subtle.

pg 5: There’s a lot of vacillation here. Q is proud of M, but doesn’t like her, but secretly does, but only because he’s been saddled with her, but really not because…

Can he just be secretly proud of her, and grumpy on the outside?

 

pg 7: still love the other job descriptions - I'd only be concerned if some of them sound more exciting than the main plot!


pg 10: Ah, Q has talked with the client. I think I missed this the first time.


pg 11: This is that same weird love/hate from before. Q is obviously concerned about not just M’s welfare, but her education and making sure she grows up to be a good and skilled person. But then he’s counting days until he can get rid of her.

pg 15: I really love the Shakespeare section, but I don’t think the last sentence works as a zinger. I don’t really find it funny that the M in the play is a male, where M in the story is a female. It doesn’t make any difference to the coincidence.

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Posted (edited)

Shared a google doc with comments with you. 

 

Mainly, I really enjoy Q’s character and your lack of general world building and good specific world building. 

 

Foreshadowing throughout the whole thing was a little heavy handed.

 

I really didn’t get the same feeling from M’s section of chapter 1. Could really use some work imo. That also sent in a google doc. 

Edited by mrwizard70
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Overall

This should definitely be chapter two! It's a good follow up to chapter one, and keeps us invested in the Q/M storyline. It does wander a bit still, and though it has an arc, the arc is a bit weak. It might help for them to gather some more concrete clues or something while milling about town, as right now it appears a bit aimless. As always however, M is brilliant and I enjoyed Q as well. The wandering of this chapter wouldn't be enough for me to put the book down, especially with the strength of chapter one, but it might be enough to get an agent to put it down if they were just doing a first 50 pages read through.

On 3/12/2018 at 8:42 AM, Mandamon said:

I really love the Shakespeare section, but I don’t think the last sentence works as a zinger. I don’t really find it funny that the M in the play is a male, where M in the story is a female. It doesn’t make any difference to the coincidence.

I agree with this. Not too much concerned about the gender difference. Pointing out the foppery, on the other hand, is very amusing. It'd be neat to see Q stutter around this, maybe deny it, then look down at some designer something or other of his and have a 'maybe, but so what?' thought.

Nice work!

As I go

- Not today, metal-heads!

- YES to the Lovecraft t-shirt!

- part of me is going with the cricket ladies, regardless of where the plot goes

- I remain upset that we don't get to hang out with the androgynous professor

- the transition from the letter to the recap of the phone conversation is abrupt and I had to reread a few times to figure out what had happened. Might need a transition sentence or two

- page fourteen: starting to wonder if the plot will find us again

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Posted (edited)

Ahh, we’re back with Q, M and E. Marvellous.

There’s some good stuff in here, though it dragged a little for me, especially in the middle - mainly due to the lack of conflict I think. There’s also a lot of naval gazing / or Q’s thoughts on stuff, some of which was engaging, some of which less so.

For example…

  • RT Cafe  - Haha. I like it. 
  • (E. didn’t count, as androids weren’t on the payroll) - Pretty funny. Also I first thought that it broke POV a little, but perhaps it's on me, the reader, to imagine Q think that in the scene
  • TF had a lot to answer for, and he had done, by getting assassinated. Haha! 
  • guardian of the irrepressible Miss M - Great. I'm riveted. 
  •  ...derived through modern Latin to mean... Hahah, I love how E is prattling on here. M's reaction feels like a bit of a missed opportunity for humour / character...(if it was harsher / more insulting, perhaps)
  • those violet android eyes - Bit OTT for me in this context, reads as borderline poetic. 
  • especially now he wasn’t dangling two thousand metres above the lunar surface on the end of the android’s arm - Cool. 
  • M snapped her fingers. “You’re really out of it today. Stay with the programme, will you? We need to make tracks. Calgary... Feels like M is forced into explaining stuff here by your choice to pull the 'snap out of it' trick. And it's a slight deviation from my idea of who she is. 
  • Hmm.. would Q rather be alone than with M? 
  • ...ah, maybe not...*perception modified*. 
  • Isn’t there something more exciting, like foiling a plot to invade Iceland? M feels less distinct. She's lost some of her attitude, it feels like to me. 
  • . But wait, there he was going all soft and parental again. Something feels a bit odd here...like there's too much telling, perhaps. Or that bit of telling is abrupt / jarring. What do you think?
  • Filigreed - hahah, excellent choice of word for Q
  • A small hand slammed down on the table. “I said, what about this new one? That’s three times you’ve played this trick. You can have it once, maybe even twice. But not three times.
  • “I bet things have chilled out. Don’t be a scum-sucker, Q. Take the job.' Better. Feels more like the Moth that's been introduced to me in Chapter 1. 
  • “I won’t put you in harm’s way, M. I can’t.' - Boring? Too parental? Maybe I would think differently if I understood the danger, perhaps (Book 2 syndrome?) 
  • P10... I'm a little bored.
  • They did the town museum, the candle factory, the brewery tour and the wildlife centre. That was pretty much it. Feels a bit sad. Dreary. Why?
  • P11.. Skim reading...get me to the good part..
  • Q scowled at her... Why?
  • Can't imagine a teenager like M saying 'compote'...wouldn't she just give a one more answer? 
  • M gives her the finger - Oh..she's mocking the waitress. Good. That's more like it...but we're still just in this cafe. I need more than that. 
  • We’re totally detectives. I’m learning in the school of life. Good...more attitude / feels realistic, but I wish she'd be more brazen, insulting his suggestion
  • More 80 please. Keep forgetting he's there. 
  • A- grades... this is good, but would have worked much better for me if it were contrasted against a more callous, teenage M, like the one that burst through the roof window at the end of Chp 1. 
  • Tha’s fawking boo rust. Icecream. hahah. That's more like it. Contrasts against Q so much more.
  • M's talking about Shakespeare...thought she wasn't bothered about him. Wish she was more curt. I feel like she’s too forthcoming with her words.
  • Ah, 80 has pipes up a bit now. Would be funny if his programming wasn’t quite right…inconsistent chattering. 
  • Why does 80 speak in a posh manner? Has Q programmed him that way? What would M think about that? 
  • , but spraying droplets of ice-cream over the table’s laminate top... Hahah. Like it. 
  • pre-programmed chortle.  Lol
  • Ending is decent 

Yes, M. does feel a bit different. She's too forth coming with her words. Q is the verbose one right? And 80. Well, Verbose might incorrect, but I like her best when she's rude and curt. 

This whole scene could come to life if you put them in a dangerous situation…or some other edgy context. I think the problem is they’re basically just sitting in a café the whole chapter and nothing really happens. You can get away with that, but the quality character interaction and depth of insight into who they are better be extremely good from beginning to end. Why are they in this dreary place? What does the setting do for your story? How does it riff against or illuminate the characters?

 

Edited by Majestic Fox
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Overall -- I can definitely see an improvement over the first version of this section, but I feel like this is the real chapter 1 of the book, and the other two are prologues or even just vignettes -- they don't feel connected to this part at all. Maybe if this chapter was next to the first Q&M chapter it would help? I don't know. It makes me wonder if the first two chapters are really necessary, whereas I might be more willing to make connections between corporate shenanigans and the (to me, right now) uninteresting local case if I'd had two chapters to get reattached to M&Q? I don't know. Either way, my feelings on finishing this part is "well, why did I read those first two anyway, if this is what it's actually about," even though I know from later that they're connected (well, i don't know if art-theft-guy comes back, but the corporate stuff and the local mystery are related, from foreknowledge)

 

As I go:

Third time header in a row and even with the space of a week i'm getting confused. Is this later from the ch1 heading, or later from the ch2 heading (which would be a different end-point than ch1) or some other later that's a combination of the two?

 

"delicately ripped " --  can one be delicate and ripped at the same time? Is that like rough smoothness? Toned, maybe? Fit? 

 

The diner section is reading a bit better, but I think it could be slimmed up a bit more. The android has his lip color mentioned twice in about half a page, and M's hair is described in first-encounter detail twice in the same span of words. There are other duplications or near-duplications like that throughout this section and they are striking me as a bit redundant. I do agree with @Mandamon that the section is reading a bit long and infoish, too. It's better than it was, but keep at it!

 

I'm still way more interested in the museum job they pass up than the local job, and aslo still a bit confused why they pass it up. It doesn't feel like Q to pass up high society, intrigue, and beautiful women just because "it wouldn't be good for M." At this point he's stated numerous times he resents being stuck with her, and the positive things he's said about her don't preculde taking the museum job and, like, stashing M in a safehouse somewhere while he's out enjoying himself. For a spacefaring culture, and for the way he talks casually about taking jobs on the moon and Mars, "on earth" could still be considered pretty darn local. 

 

"if you kept a civil tongue in your head" -- this is a whole lot better than the previous version! But still kinda cringey to me....

 

"So, we’ll be taking it then?” -- Didn't they decide several pages ago to take it? And that's why they're still hanging around in town? I'm confused

 

It's a good line to end on, but the punch of it has been taken away by the scene prior with the list of jobs.

 

Random thought -- can they just take both? Like, take the perfect museum job, then decide to pick up the ulta-local one on their way out of town since it's obvs going to be a quick, easy one that absolutely won't interfere with their travel plans at all (maybe M should be point on it it's so easy!  (ha-ha ;) ) )? I mean, especially after that call, having Q decide to stick it to his ex-dad and have to rationalize it later to M out loud seems more in-character than passing up the high life of fine art and politics just for some nebulous concept of "might be dangerous for The Children" 

 

 

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On 12/03/2018 at 3:42 PM, Mandamon said:

I've sent you a file with LBLs as well.

Awesome, you rock.

On 12/03/2018 at 3:42 PM, Mandamon said:

I think this should definitely go back to being chapter 2. It follows through well from the first chapter and acts as a sequel to that scene.

Yeah, I'm, 93% convinced of this, my only worry with it is then having potentially having two Yellowknife chapters together, but I'll like at my chapter map and see how i can make it work

On 12/03/2018 at 3:42 PM, Mandamon said:

pg 3: There's a big infodump with the "what happened last time." I wonder if this could be added in piece by piece to be more subtle.

Ha, and i think these is me having trimmed it a little too. Back to the letter plank...

On 12/03/2018 at 3:42 PM, Mandamon said:

pg 5: There’s a lot of vacillation here. Q is proud of M, but doesn’t like her, but secretly does, but only because he’s been saddled with her, but really not because… Can he just be secretly proud of her, and grumpy on the outside?

No doubt he can; thanks for calling me on this.

On 12/03/2018 at 3:42 PM, Mandamon said:

pg 7: still love the other job descriptions - I'd only be concerned if some of them sound more exciting than the main plot!

What can I say, I'm setting up my novella series here :D

On 12/03/2018 at 3:42 PM, Mandamon said:

pg 10: Ah, Q has talked with the client. I think I missed this the first time.

I may well have added it - in fact, I think I did.

On 12/03/2018 at 3:42 PM, Mandamon said:

pg 11: This is that same weird love/hate from before. Q is obviously concerned about not just M’s welfare, but her education and making sure she grows up to be a good and skilled person. But then he’s counting days until he can get rid of her.

Noted. I'll tackle this with an edit right now, I do believe.

On 12/03/2018 at 3:42 PM, Mandamon said:

pg 15: I really love the Shakespeare section, but I don’t think the last sentence works as a zinger. I don’t really find it funny that the M in the play is a male, where M in the story is a female. It doesn’t make any difference to the coincidence.

I'll look into that.

Superb comments. Really helpful. Many thanks!!

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On 12/03/2018 at 5:29 PM, mrwizard70 said:

Shared a google doc with comments with you. 

Again, thank you for that. Really helpful. I replied to the first lot, and will get onto this chapter in the next day or two.

On 12/03/2018 at 5:29 PM, mrwizard70 said:

Mainly, I really enjoy Q’s character and your lack of general world building and good specific world building. Foreshadowing throughout the whole thing was a little heavy handed. I really didn’t get the same feeling from Moth’s section of chapter 1. Could really use some work imo. That also sent in a google doc. 

Yeah, interesting. Too much to hope that everything works for everyone, of course, but glad you have a positive reaction to Q.

If you wouldn't mind, can I ask you to edit your post to replace Q's name. You'd be amazed (or maybe you wouldn't) how such things can be tracked to this forum. Although, Q is a fairly generic word, of course.

Thanks again. I will respond to the G-doc :) 

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3 hours ago, Robinski said:

Again, thank you for that. Really helpful. I replied to the first lot, and will get onto this chapter in the next day or two.

Yeah, interesting. Too much to hope that everything works for everyone, of course, but glad you have a positive reaction to Q.

If you wouldn't mind, can I ask you to edit your post to replace Q's name. You'd be amazed (or maybe you wouldn't) how such things can be tracked to this forum. Although, Q is a fairly generic word, of course.

Thanks again. I will respond to the G-doc :) 

Edited.

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Top man, thank you :) 

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Posted (edited)

20 hours ago, Robinski said:
Quote

pg 15: I really love the Shakespeare section, but I don’t think the last sentence works as a zinger. I don’t really find it funny that the M in the play is a male, where M in the story is a female. It doesn’t make any difference to the coincidence.

I'll look into that.

Hey, @Mandamon, I'm a little confused. Is that the last line in the version your were looking at? The latest version has an addition at the end, the phone call from the Old Man. I'm wondering if there was a disconnect somewhere.

Edit: Ah, but I see in your LBLs you are happy with the new last line, so, I think we're good :) 

Edit2: Great LBLs; thanks so much. Questions:

1.  You questioned Great Slave Lake, and I wasn't sure why. It's in NWT, near Yellowknife, and appears on the map as a huge mass, which is the point I was aiming to make.

2.  "Shakespeare's M is a boy." - Okay, forget all the blubbering earlier on. I missed the point, but get it now. I could call Q's weird and often insensitive sense of humour, but I don't really want to have to go into explanation to demonstrate that. So..., I'm not sure what to do there. I will forge ahead and keep in mind for editing.

Thanks again! :) 

Edited by Robinski
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On 12/03/2018 at 5:29 PM, mrwizard70 said:

Shared a google doc with comments with you. 

Thanks so much for those G-doc comments; some good fixes there. Much appreciated.

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Hey Kais, thank you so much for commenting. Always challenging, constructive and encouraging.

On 14/03/2018 at 2:03 AM, kais said:

This should definitely be chapter two!... It does wander a bit still, and though it has an arc, the arc is a bit weak.

Deal. Noted on the arc.

On 14/03/2018 at 2:03 AM, kais said:

It might help for them to gather some more concrete clues or something while milling about town, as right now it appears a bit aimless... The wandering of this chapter wouldn't be enough for me to put the book down, especially with the strength of chapter one, but it might be enough to get an agent to put it down if they were just doing a first 50 pages read through.

????

On 14/03/2018 at 2:03 AM, kais said:

Pointing out the foppery, on the other hand, is very amusing. It'd be neat to see Q stutter around this, maybe deny it, then look down at some designer something or other of his and have a 'maybe, but so what?' thought.

Yeah, I've added a line from Q. Thanks :) 

On 14/03/2018 at 2:03 AM, kais said:

- part of me is going with the cricket ladies, regardless of where the plot goes

Novella #1.

On 14/03/2018 at 2:03 AM, kais said:

- I remain upset that we don't get to hang out with the androgynous professor

Book 3, or Novella #2.

On 14/03/2018 at 2:03 AM, kais said:

- the transition from the letter to the recap of the phone conversation is abrupt and I had to reread a few times to figure out what had happened. Might need a transition sentence or two

Done, and doubled as a bit of world building :) 

On 14/03/2018 at 2:03 AM, kais said:

- page fourteen: starting to wonder if the plot will find us again

Okay. I've tried to drop in a couple more thoughts, but they are treading water at this point, it's true.

Great comments, Kais, thanks again :) 

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Hey Fox, thank you so much for the detailed comments, very helpful, and challenging!! I will now tackle them one at a time...

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

There’s some good stuff in here, though it dragged a little for me, especially in the middle - mainly due to the lack of conflict I think. There’s also a lot of naval gazing / or Q’s thoughts on stuff, some of which was engaging, some of which less so. - Yeah. I'm poking and prodding this chapter as I go through the comments. I don't want to rip it apart, but will edit it two of three times before it appears again, probably as a complete alpha read request.

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

RT Cafe  - Haha. I like it. - This is an amalgam of two real places in Creston, both of which are excellent eateries.

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

(E. didn’t count, as androids weren’t on the payroll) - I first thought that it broke POV a little, but perhaps it's on me, the reader, to imagine Q think that in the scene - Yup, that was the intention. 

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

M's reaction feels like a bit of a missed opportunity for humour / character...(if it was harsher / more insulting, perhaps) - I've tweaked this; thanks. 

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

those violet android eyes - Bit OTT for me in this context, reads as borderline poetic. - Good catch. In Book 1, I set out Pantone definitions of the android's features, and have introduced that here in respect of the eyes, which depersonalises the description, I think.

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

especially now he wasn’t dangling two thousand metres above the lunar surface on the end of the android’s arm - Cool. - I'm pleased this works for a non-Book 1 initiate.

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

M snapped her fingers. “You’re really out of it today. Stay with the programme, will you? We need to make tracks. Calgary... Feels like M is forced into explaining stuff here by your choice to pull the 'snap out of it' trick. And it's a slight deviation from my idea of who she is. - Hmm, it does lead me to a punchline. I'll think on this.  

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

Isn’t there something more exciting, like foiling a plot to invade Iceland? M feels less distinct. She's lost some of her attitude, it feels like to me. - I've tweaked up the M-level.

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

But wait, there he was going all soft and parental again. Something feels a bit odd here...like there's too much telling, perhaps. Or that bit of telling is abrupt / jarring. - I've edited some bits for previous comments, so I'm starting to lose track somewhat of which bits I've altered for which comments. I'm thinking I've tweaked this already :o/

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

A small hand slammed down on the table. “I said, what about this new one? That’s three times you’ve played this trick. You can have it once, maybe even twice. But not three times. - Tweaked. 

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

“I won’t put you in harm’s way, M. I can’t.' - Boring? Too parental? Maybe I would think differently if I understood the danger, perhaps (Book 2 syndrome?) - Tweaked: was a bit of a nothing line.

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

They did the town museum, the candle factory, the brewery tour and the wildlife centre. That was pretty much it. Feels a bit sad. Dreary. Why? - Small town syndrome. 

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

Q scowled at her... Why? - I thought the next line explained. It was a reaction to her casual cruelty.

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

Can't imagine a teenager like M saying 'compote'...wouldn't she just give a one more answer? - She was just repeating the waitress's use of compote. 

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

More 80 please. Keep forgetting he's there. - I know, I know. You're not the only one calling for this, but I don't feel there has been a place for it in the first two chapters.

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

M's talking about Shakespeare, thought she wasn't bothered about him. Wish she was more curt. I feel like she’s too forthcoming with her words. - I'll keep an eye out for this.

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

Ah, 80 has pipes up a bit now. Would be funny if his programming wasn’t quite right…inconsistent chattering. - Erm, not sure about the basis for that. We'll see.

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

Why does 80 speak in a posh manner? Has Q programmed him that way? What would M think about that? - Q hasn't. Some joker at the factory thought that androids should speak proper English :P 

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

Yes, M. does feel a bit different. She's too forth coming with her words... I like her best when she's rude and curt. - Ok, I'll leave character tone till the full edit.

On 14/03/2018 at 1:14 PM, Majestic Fox said:

This whole scene could come to life if you put them in a dangerous situation…or some other edgy context. Why are they in this dreary place? What does the setting do for your story? How does it riff against or illuminate the characters? - Certainly there is some indecision as they consider which case to take, and a change of plan when Q announces they are not going off world. There is action and tension to come, so I planned this as a sequel chapter. I'm going to stick with it for this edit, but take your points on this.

Phew. That was hard work, a real test of the chapter, which is awesome. Thank you! :) 

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On 3/20/2018 at 3:45 AM, Robinski said:

1.  You questioned Great Slave Lake, and I wasn't sure why. It's in NWT, near Yellowknife, and appears on the map as a huge mass, which is the point I was aiming to make.

Ah--ok. I'd never heard of it before and thought there was a typo with "Great Lake."

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Hey ID, thank you so much for commenting.

On 15/03/2018 at 8:23 PM, industrialistDragon said:

I feel like this is the real chapter 1 of the book, and the other two are prologues or even just vignettes -- they don't feel connected to this part at all. Maybe if this chapter was next to the first Q&M chapter it would help?

Yes, that's how it started out, and now this is back as Chapter 2.

On 15/03/2018 at 8:23 PM, industrialistDragon said:

The android has his lip color mentioned twice in about half a page

Oops, thanks.

On 15/03/2018 at 8:23 PM, industrialistDragon said:

the section is reading a bit long and infoish, too. It's better than it was, but keep at it!

Will do. I'm moving on now, but these things will stand out in the next round, I'm sure.

On 15/03/2018 at 8:23 PM, industrialistDragon said:

I'm still way more interested in the museum job they pass up than the local job

You've not seen the last of that. I'm inclined towards a novella, and the cricketing ladies are a must!! (I think @kais is going to crowdfund that one ;) ). OM_G, I've just had an amazing idea!!!!!!! :D 

On 15/03/2018 at 8:23 PM, industrialistDragon said:

"if you kept a civil tongue in your head" -- this is a whole lot better than the previous version! But still kinda cringey to me....

I don't think Q is beyond being cringey, so I'm going to let that one ride for the moment. PC is not always in his MO.

On 15/03/2018 at 8:23 PM, industrialistDragon said:

"So, we’ll be taking it then?” -- Didn't they decide several pages ago to take it? And that's why they're still hanging around in town? I'm confused

Yeah, this is untidy now, because I've been back and forth editing bits a pieces without going all the way through the chapter to clean it it. I'll fix this, thanks :) 

On 15/03/2018 at 8:23 PM, industrialistDragon said:

Random thought -- can they just take both? Like, take the perfect museum job, then decide to pick up the ulta-local one on their way out of town since it's obvs going to be a quick, easy one that absolutely won't interfere with their travel plans at all (maybe M should be point on it it's so easy!  (ha-ha ;) ) )? I mean, especially after that call, having Q decide to stick it to his ex-dad and have to rationalize it later to M out loud seems more in-character than passing up the high life of fine art and politics just for some nebulous concept of "might be dangerous for The Children"

Hmm, now this is a teaser. Excellent suggestion. I think I might try it this way, but... the museum job is actually a set-up by the old man to try and court Q away from the R job, but I also have sort of committed to the idea of writing that episode as a novella, or collection of shorter stories. Actually, the more I think about it, the more I am keen to make your suggestion work in some form. Thanks ID!! Can we agree on royalties of 0.0005%? ;) 

Super comments, I love being challenged in this way. Thank you so much :) 

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4 hours ago, Mandamon said:

Ah--ok. I'd never heard of it before and thought there was a typo with "Great Lake."

Ah, I understand. 5ab28761f07ff_thumbs-upsmall.jpg.9ec0cfd2b8ac2365e7094b7772f42b55.jpg

 

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