Yados

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Everything posted by Yados

  1. Kind of makes sense. Mistborn was kind of the same structure. The world is kept in a certain state via a series cosmological half measures that the heroes only partially understand and for the Ultimate evil to be undone, those half measures need to be upended for the true conflict to play out/be resolved. I think pretty much every prophecy is a bad omen for the good guys. It's all bad stuff going down. Pretty, macro-scale everything we've seen has implied that this whole cosmological conflict is a battle that cannot be won, just fought over and over again. The main characters are living in a world that has been rebuilt on the myth that the war was won for good, but even if the heroes reject that lie they are still faced with a battle that can only be briefly won. If this story is about the true end of the cycle, the dams need to burst before evil is vanquished for good/true change occurs. ... meaning perhaps Honor advises Dalinar to force Odium into a champion because it's a way for Odium to WIN... without Roshar itself being too destroyed to deal with whatever comes next.
  2. Sorry for the delay. I was out and stretched pretty thin and my cloud did not sync to my phone so the only thing I had on hand when I remembered it was Monday was an even rougher copy of this chapter. Which reminds me: Guys, this is rough. I’m having problems with this character. I like the concept of a more heroic but beset foil to Till and once the two meet and the plot starts going, I’m set. But Lyan on her own is hard. This is my first try at a first chapter that I haven’t hated outright, but it’s still rough and also almost still a prologue. It doesn’t introduce much of anything aside from Lyan and some character framing and I should probably go back into it at some point and fill out world stuff because “generic market, thief, guard” isn’t that great by itself… at least not for a first chapter. But I think I kind of got a demeanor and voice and I started her slight later than this before so this feels a bit grounding? I don’t know what I’m asking for with this one. Buy in? I guess buy in. Character premise? I dunno. My alternate plan is to change her PoV’s to Roah from Till 4 and try to rework the plot. She’s more central and has more driving action, but she’s also kind of similar to Till and both of them are older and have disabilities and powers and cynicism… so I’m trying to get Lyan right instead. So yeah, thoughts are appreciated. Insight and attempts at direction especially. Thanks for the benefit of your eyes and brains!
  3. Hi all! First, a disclaimer: This is long. 5,750-ish words. The chapters themselves are quite short and they combine into a contained arc/vignette. For that reason, I wanted to present the whole for critique rather than the parts. That said, here’s the deal: Only read the fourth chapter if you feel like I’ve earned it and you personally want a resolution. Optional. That it keeps it well under the 5k limit. What I’m going for: I’m going for a feeling of something more than a hard plot. That’s just how my brain sees stories. This is either going to be the second in a set of alternating PoV’s or a “part 2” of the book itself so there would be at least one other PoV alternating or having completed an arc prior to this. But Till is easier for me to write so I did his first. The other PoV is a guardsman who runs afoul of Roah and Horst, who are in the fourth chapter. I say this to point out that those characters would have been introduced previously and Roah’s psychic powers would likely have been established more clearly before that interaction. It’s not her character introduction is what I’m saying. What I’m looking for: Basically, just big picture… Did it scan? Did you buy in? Like I said, I’m more feelings centered than world or plot, but for that to work, I need it to *work* because if it doesn’t come off as sad and remorseful and evoke of those things, I look silly. So, did it do that? There’s not much world stuff (I wanted to prologue to dump most of it so I didn’t have to in the actual narrative) but it would good to know if any of the little things were interesting or confusing. The writing style is far more constrained than the prologue. Did you prefer this? Am I still putting too much of a flourish on everything or am I tamping it down too hard in places? That’s about it. I’m really interested in getting feedback on this because the prologue didn’t represent the kind of story I wanted to tell, but this is a bit closer to that ideal. Hopefully. Thanks!
  4. Kaisa said it was alright for me to submit this week since there were open slots. I’ve haven’t engaged with this community for… years? Oof. Yeah. Three years, looks like. It’s bad when the internet is what makes you feel old. I don’t even know if anyone who was around back when I used to sporadically post and critique are still here, but that’s okay because I think this attempt is best gone into fresh. Even though, in a lot of ways, it’s the same book I’ve always been trying to write. I’ve had these characters in my head for years and years and whenever I try write something, it’s always about them. And the thing that changes more than anything is the story. Because I like writing about these characters and I think I keep getting a little better at it every time I try. But I always fall off when there are pages and pages of people talking but not much happening and not much of an idea of what would make things happen. In the end, I think that the reason I’ve been able to adapt these same characters into whatever story/plot/setting/time I’m writing is more due to the weakness of those other things. I’ve been a long time coming back to these characters and writing itself because I’ve been going through law school the last three years. It’s a bit of a gauntlet, but I’m at the point where I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and that’s turned my brain back to these characters and, more importantly, a story I want to tell. So I think I have a story this time and I think I know where it goes and I definitely know how I want it to end because it’s interesting and specific to the characters that have been running around in my head and the world that was always kind of half-forming around them. I like it a lot. And I keep liking it. Which is important. I hope it’ll be something that keeps me writing and keeps me hanging around here and contributing and engaging and reading and critiquing… even though finals are looming. tl;dr I’m writing again after a few years and I’m pretty sure my brain is a bit different. Thanks for reading!
  5. Nice! Congrats!
  6. Hm, okay so one for and two against. I meant the "whore" line to be a bit of irony because of the chain mail and sword, but also to drive home the betrayal her mother perceives that her daughter would sell out her ideals and rent her body and time for money (outside the walls is more of an agrarian barter system with a mix of extremely highly regarded property rights and communal shared labor and wealth... sort of a high regard for ownership of the tools to generate your livelihood and welfare, but an expectation that the fruits of those tools be given as needed rather than being accumulated to generate personal wealth or power) ... I think my first draft had a bit more about how employment and rent were seen as abhorrent beyond the wall. Working for someone just because they pay your money and then having to pay that same money back to eat and sleep and functionally exist being perceived from another perspective. I personally like it a great deal, but I understand it's kind of a charged word that could pull someone out. I'll see if I can lay it out a bit clearer without sacrificing flow. I'm trying to hit fantasy xenophobia more than racism and make it clear (not here I guess, but clear throughout) that there are several different races and cultures within Quarantine and that the extreme xenophobia against those who have left and returned has been fostered to unite those people against an outside entity now that the wardens are gone and and with them, that dividing line between god and man. It was also part of the reasoning of allowing people to leave in the first place. Further, with both the afflicted ("magic people") and the outlanders and the whole high concept of human beings being exiled as unclean from a society of immortals who saw aging and dying as a curse/illness, I'm kind of trying to hit leper/xenophobe more than racism. I understand how it must come across in a vacuum. I guess I'll tone down the boy a bit and see if I can add a bit of exposition that doesn't feel like an infodump, but at least might signal that this is something other than fantasy racism without nailing down what that something is yet. Thanks for the feedback everyone! I'm glad the character seems to generally scan.
  7. I know, but I think the cross-culturalism came off as sci-fi to me. Plus my edit above which I don't know if you got a notification for or not. Mea culpa big time. Man, I thought the room was a holo-deck and everything.
  8. ... oh man. Is it not? Wait. Yeah. Let me go through it again. I had never even considered it wasn't. Edit: @neongrey Wow. Okay. Just scanning over it... full-disclosure, I'm dyslexic. As in actually full-on dyslexia alternative learning approaches and everything. It makes law school a whole thing. I read the whole story with "aelin" as "alien" and that probably set a backdrop to interpret everything else as aliens/humans seen through the eye of an other. I'll go back through more thoroughly and point out specifics if I see it. Wow, that's really embarrassing. I'm usually better about knowing when I get something so thoroughly jumbled.
  9. I liked this, but I felt the characters, especially the "humans," came off as too obtuse at times. I'm not much of a sci-fi reader beyond some comic books that probably don't qualify for the hard genre (no Dune or Asimov or whatever their modern heirs are) so maybe I'm not sophisticated as to some of the whys or wherefores. It just seemed a bit over the top to have two species meet one another in a space context but also have such little respect or expressed capacity to understand. Like, if I'm dealing with an alien bird lady, why am I affected if the alien lifeforms misgenders me? On Earth, that would grind my gears or trip me up because I'm in a shared cultural space with equals who are showing either ignorance or intolerance or disrespect. The alien is just seeing words and titles and aliens and probably not the way someone presents and almost definitely not anyone's genitals or what have you. Obviously, there's a different social norm and way of thinking, but it seems to be a bit too internalized on the human's end for my way of thinking. How are the humans in this situation not going into this with mindset of the inherently different and therefore so surprised by everything? We're not all human beings in this setting and as much as we have been brutal colonialists and invaders in the past, a shared space-faring human entity would know that and would have also spent the time thinking about the things we're thinking about now. What religious or cultural beliefs wouldn't be at least partially upended by becoming space faring society or meeting other forms of sentient life? Why, and this might be a bit pedantic, would they not think to ask about the meaning/relevance of the silks they got before? If they think that these aliens are mindless savages with no written word... we should be in full colonization destruction disease rape strip-mining resources mode, right? If it's another sentient species that we respect as sophisticated and intelligent, "how do they write/transmit information" seems like it should have been on the top of our list of things to figure out. Humans just seem a little bit too befuddled and obtuse for the scenario. Maybe I think too much of people. Or maybe too little? I wouldn't have a problem if they were all lazy or stupid or unconcerned or condescending or racist or something, but they seem so sensitive to things that seem too artificial to have survived the vacuum of space and alien contact. Its too much of a genuine reaction. It makes sense for the main character to be so condescending and obtuse because its her race/planet that has been discovered and contacted and so they can be at whatever level of tolerance or inquisitiveness that they happen to be. I think it makes her seem a bit unsympathetic, but sure, that's the story you're telling. Barriers and communication and such. That's an interesting premise and, like I said, I'm pretty much a newcomer to anything that would call itself sci fi and not be just fantasy in space or sometimes maybe Star Trek so sure, I'm interested to see how this all goes... It just felt a little bit too much like Captain Kirk being really concerned about the Romulans wearing the right kinds of clothes or something? Like, if we're having that conversation, haven't we previously been forced to shed some of the rigidity of our thinking? I always assumed that was the point of space. Which is a long way of saying that I liked it, but I felt the premise seemed a bit off. Or at least assuming things about humans and people that I would not naturally assume.
  10. Hey, good problem to have. I'll take it. Thanks @Robinski (Is this good etiquette, to tag someone? I've been away from this community a considerable while.) But yeah, I keep going for a mosaic perspective with my writing which means that I'm interested in everyone and it's hard to move the plot because I can't make anyone who just serves it or moves it along. Some people just need to be there to guard the doors I guess... I was thinking about dropping these after minor characters die/do something unexpected, but then that's cheating. "Yeah, that random guy there I didn't set up? He had a lot of baggage. He was sad about things and never even told you. Feel bad even though I didn't make him interesting until now." I gotta work out a balance.
  11. That's a nice idea. Writing short little things is how you make it through the dry spells that otherwise could last the rest of your life. But you almost never find a place for those. As for yours, I think you need to put specific detail with the allusions and the like. You're talking as an observer but not really telling the reader what your observed or how you felt about observing those things. You have platitudes and those are just one step away from cliche. You gotta make it vivid or understandably affecting because you're working against the assumption you're a creep and need to drive home just how impactful this one person was. That's my hot take. My thing is a little second person vignette format I've been toying around with for character introduction. I don't know if they'll ultimately fit in anywhere since they are a bit too stylistic and narrator centric. But they are by far the easiest thing to write and I like doing them for minor characters to work out what they are feeling/doing about things rather than just serving the plot.
  12. Yeah this is a nice little primer of what I read last time into perspective. A paired down version would read nicely on the back of a book. Like with Way of Kings. I have a weird conviction if there are going to be dragons in something, you should say so up front. But that's just me being silly, and this being an intro would solve that. I don't know why dragons should be different than bird people. But yes, I like the conceit as the intro... though it might be a little too obvious if put in the middle of the book proper. Like if you've been teasing things or alluding for a few chapters, this feels like cheating. But if you put it up front, I think it's more acceptable/enjoyable because it is doing what it is doing and doing that well. Excited to read more or maybe go back to what you've put out before now that I feel more informed/engaged.
  13. I have something for Monday. Very short. Like a third of last week.
  14. This was really fun! I rarely feel the urge to go back and catch up with these projects, but I feel like doing so with this one. It feels very Witcher/early WoT. Like there's just stuff going on everywhere. Stuff that is related to its own business and not some overarching plot. Dangerous world built for stories. "And yet, the townsfolk were eager to shift from misery to gratitude. They showered him with money and supplies while tending to their wounded and terrified, as if unsure of their priorities. They were locked between celebration and recovery." - I gotta disagree with rdpulfer. This passage threw me out of it. Felt too clean and too video game. If he's going to leave the town all the same, I wouldn't mind something more apprehensive. For all that he dispatched the punisher, this guy knows the town's crime... they may not take to him to kindly. At least not all of them. Just a thought. Also, someone calling themselves a Spymistress is a little too silly. Spies kind of underplay, you know. Not saying she should be more mysterious or not give her name, but she could say something unassuming that Lothun knows well enough to know means top spy or spymaster, etc. Also, I thought the moralizing with the ice spirit was a little on the nose. But I don't have a good enough sense of the character yet to have a firm stance on how they should react before they kill him. That plus the "no big deal" makes him seem a bit too heroic/noble when a lot of the other stuff in the chapter makes him seem like he should be more Strider/world-worn.
  15. Hey everyone! Thank you so much for the feedback and especially for getting through all these pages! I am sorry I disappeared right after that ask, but post-Christmas seems to mean tired family members in close proximity with all the magic of the season worn off and we all know what that means. I just now got back into town feeling vaguely human and getting to this week's submissions. You're all champs.
  16. I'm on for today, right?
  17. Oh boy, you are speaking my language here. Love the style and the third person present. Totally lost on the jewelsmithing, it's chapter 8 so that's not an issue. I think the exposition really comes to a boil at the end where you have Savae kind of just states what she's doing and why. I'd be more engaged with this background political situation if I felt like the character had immediate stakes when the scene is being focused around. But then, you're framing it around a conversation so aside from flashbacks or a different structure, your hands are kind of tied. Personally, I try to put a lot of motivation/weighing options stuff in the inner narrative. But then it doesn't seem as if your PoV character is that conflicted, just resolving the question of her action to the other character. I don't know. It depends on what you want to convey and how you want to have it conveyed. You have a great sense of style and inner narrative and dialogue. Definitely a feather in your cap. Nice chapter!
  18. I'm finally resurfaced after finals and decompression. I have a sizable chunk I'd be comfortable submitting either this or next week. Need to get back into reading/critiquing either way.
  19. The look of joy and wonderment on the Man in Black's face at the end was perfect. This was such an amazing beast of a high concept show and I can't wait for the new thing it's primed to become next.
  20. Thanks for all the feedback, everyone! Sorry I was not more responsive over the weekend. Law school finals are a whole thing. My takeaways are that the voice largely works, but the rambling doesn't, the setting is interesting, but the infodump is too dense. Less meta, more hard detail. I think I'll set off doing another take on this till the rest of the story is done, but set aside the things I think needed to have been set up (wardens, quarantine as a city/world, foundational myth, stage stuff) and see if I can get there in less time or if anything new needs to be in there. Right now, I'm think about confining that "voice" to something like epigraphs and interludes and making sure the prose for the proper story stays more constrained. I think it would be pretty hard to tell a whole story like this. I do think that my interests in telling a story in the first place stray a bit in the direction of setting up feeling and therefore the polot/details/world-building are always going to be subservient to those moments... which makes it a hard balance. But I think I can get there and I think that if I can get it to work, I have a good story to tell. We'll have to see. I don't think I'll have new chapters polished until week after next (first final is Monday) but writing as procrastination gets you pages as it turns out. I'll be interested to see what the reactions are compared to this and whether I might need to loosen up if only to mitigate whiplash. Thanks again for reading this and giving me the benefit of your eyes!
  21. Great feedback! I'm definitely still hammering out style versus structure. And the problem with letting yourself indulge is that you are going to veer onto the self-indulgent. I'm trying to get my "voice" across with fewer words. I wonder how far I could pare this down. It's trying set up a lot of stuff and be kind of distinct, but I might not need to set up all those things and the first/second chapter still has the burden of setting up a wholly different thing (and it's thirty years later). I think more than anything, I wanted to set up a sort of feeling in the opener more than any of the other things it does. But that's a pretty tall order for an prologue where no one is invested yet. Well spotted on the opener. Last minute addition because I felt like I needed some kind of opening statement... and it shows. I'll punch it up/change it. I wanted it to mirror the ending where I think it works a lot better but maybe that's not the way to go. Sadly, it's going to be more of a lady crime-master and lady-inquisitor cat and mouse kind of story in effect more than lady knight story. There's a lot of exploration about things that were promised and things that actually happened. I wanted to set this stuff up as contrast. And there's at least one major flashback/story set in that era that would be full-knight... but now I wonder if it's a false promise and I should stick to a more authoritarian/fascist aesthetic for these guys. Lots to think about. Thanks!
  22. I doubt it. Because of the way it functions and the way Sanderson has spoken about this subject, I read the Beyond as a personal/spiritual buffer that lets Sanderson tell a big stories about "gods" and "resurrections" ... but at the same time you have souls passing on to an unknowable fate. There's the Cosmere's expansive domain and the Beyond's more traditional spiritual unknowable domain. That feels like it wouldn't be there if it wasn't meant to be a hard line. The "gods"/shards are just entities with a lot of awareness and power that can mess around with the world of the living but can't touch the afterlife any more than I can. So they aren't actually "gods" and people coming back to life aren't real "resurrections" but they allow you to write about and explore those things because they look and act like those things and, to the inhabitants of the Cosmere, they effectively are those things. But the Beyond makes sure that they are not. It makes sure that the Cosmere and the Shards and resurrections function as allegories rather than explorations of the pure, uncut concepts that have real world significance to many. It feels weird to speculate about something like this, but there might be a concern re: personal religious/spiritual beliefs of "playing god"? Even in fiction? I don't know if that's the answer, but I think that if it was a concern, the way the Beyond functions would effectively sidestep those concerns. But that's all speculation AND I am way out of the loop these days.
  23. I read this chapter but I haven't read the others so my feedback is going to be a bit limited to flow and tone rather than plot or world since I'm not a fair judge of those in this context. Overall This is interesting. I am having a hard time "seeing" the world aside from the little bits specifically described... but I shouldn't need to know everything from jumping in after 5 chapters. I'm picturing 1930s new york but it's all bird people (angels?), but for all I know that's way off base. Overall, I like it. It's slow at first but picks up. I'm not sure whether I'm supposed to like this character or not, but then again, this seems like a very distinct pov and presently I have nothing to contrast it with. I think if you're going to start with a conversations between different characters until the last few pages, you might want to punch up the dialogue just a bit. I didn't feel like any of the characters had a distinct "voice" even as the pov character seemed distinct in the ways she thought and the things she noticed. Present tense is definitely working for me. I guess my main question about this is how much of this chapter's pov is the character and how much is you? Is this how you normally write or are the attentions to particular details and the, I don't know, sternness, consciously a character choice? I don't know how helpful and of that is, but I'm definitely happy to be along for the ride. As I Go Okay. Bird people, I think. Contracts. Cool. Gay bird lady. Who is a lawyer and something with magic. And it's also a law firm? Feels authentic in that capacity. Not keeping up with the politics, but that's probably on me. Okay, mugging. Nice. Magic. Why is it "they"? Is that a world thing or she can't determine the gender or something else? She seems really aggressive and angry beyond just being mugged/her plans being messed up. Indignant. Very powerful pov. Secret magic on top of a world where there's a bunch of other stuff going on seems a little hard to parse, but I could be misunderstanding how power is distributed in this world.
  24. Thanks for the feedback! Grammar, especially dropped words, is an issue, to be sure. Proof readers are a dyslexic's best friend. Glad you thought the style worked. I'm toning it down about half way for the main chapters but gave myself free reign for the prologue and some inserts/character sketches throughout. I'm trying to give myself enough of a leash that it's fun, but I also need to be able to proceed with some amount of structure if it's going to work as a whole. I like writing like the prologue, but it's kind of thing you need to nail or you look very foolish. I hope the story delivers. I have an opening and an ending I am very happy with. Now I just have to bridge the two. As for the four humors, I'm going to try to use them as freshly as I can. I like them as a broad framework which I can play around and do unique things but still be able to point and call it something. And I like to think I have some nice twists added them as well. I'll be interested to see if you guys think it works.
  25. Eh, Pond Life and Power of 3 were okay it's likely a good idea for the show to cycle through more creative controls if it's going to have legs. If Chibnall is "eh" as a showrunner, at least that has the potential to accelerate the process. From what I understand of the process, the showrunner position gives so much power over plot, tone, and episode production that it might be unfair to judge Chibnall based on his episodes under RTD & Moffat (which were themselves very different). Surely, I enjoy Gattis' episodes over in Sherlock where he's a co-showrunner more than I enjoy his Who episodes, where he's just a writer. The real problem is that Moffat's run doesn't have its own Moffat. There's no established, stand-out writer from the last few seasons to become the heir-apparent as Moffat did. Gaiman wrote two good episodes and is very established, but he has no management/production pedigree/interest. Jamie Mathieson has written probably the best non-Moffat episodes of the last two seasons (Mummy on the Orient Express, Flatline, The Girl Who Died), but he's not nearly established enough to be anything other than a writer at this point in his career. So it was either going to be Gattis or someone primarily from another a show. It's just a shame to me that it wasn't Howard Overman, the showrunner of Misfits... or someone whose episodes/other shows I've liked at all. Broadchurch was a hell of a bore for me. Nearly as bad as the Fall as far as overdramatic, humorless British crime dramas go.