kais

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760 Wyrn the King

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About kais

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  1. @Robinski I didn't get this sub. Could you send it to my email directly? Thank you!
  2. Overall I think this does in fact, qualify as fantasy, since it has a talking cat. It's just more urban than sword and sorcery or high fantasy. What are the word count limits? This seems long for flash fiction, and a little too wandery. I think it would need to be cut and honed to really get that flash fiction feel. I'm also confused as to how it meets the requirements of the writing contest. What is the main character's fault? That they are walking alone between buildings? Being mute isn't a fault--a fault is something that you could fix if you worked on it. Our MC here can't fix being mute any more than a blind person could fix being blind. I think our MC needs a more readily identifiable fault for this to work for the writing contest. As below, I'm also confused by the ending. It didn't have any punch and I'm left wondering what the arc of the story was. I think part of this is that there is no real wonder over the talking cat. I'd like to see more reactions, more description of the voice of the cat and what that does to the bullies and the MC. The beginning of the piece was very nice and engaging! I think you've got a great start here. The middle and the end just need some tightening. So... what is the fault he has to overcome? Being socially awkward? Also I never would have guessed ventriloquism. It was stated so clearly that he was mute. That might have to be backed off or foreshadowed better. As I go - I had to read the first sentence three times before I realized the 'they' is the apartment buildings - pg 1: wait, actual gorillas? Or large people? - pg 3: when the cat started talking I was very confused. I think some description of what the cat sounds like would be really useful. Give us some hint it is the cat and not some human who has stumbled upon the scene - I don't understand the arc of this story. The ending leaves me feeling... like I've either missed something or there are some unkempt promises.
  3. Received and not in spam
  4. Wow I...missed a party it looks like. Overall Mostly I'm confused as to the whys of this piece. Why did they have to go kill the witch? I think we are missing some critical worldbuilding, especially along the lines of the religion and magical systems of the world. I didn't feel any real tension because I was never afraid of the witch, and felt more confusion about her condemnation than anything else. Two men and a familiar again a witch who seems more scientist doesn't seem quite fair, especially when she never actually attacks them. I'd like to see more agency on her part, and more worldbuilding all around. The religion theme confuses me, but I think mostly because it seems strongest at the end and somewhat shoehorned in. I think the worldbuilding add on could definitely use some background on the religions in the world and what our MCs follow. It would help the ending land better. As I go pg 2: these first two pages are very strongly in the voice I'm used to from your other work--where in the woman with the black hair has a similar voice to many other characters I've read from you. However, the first two installments the characters had unique voices, so I'm wondering if this is just an early draft issue and her voice will get changed later? - pg 4: I am unclear what anyone is talking about in these pages. They found a witch and they want her to... stop doing something? And she doesn't care? - pg 6: I need more worldbuilding to get behind the disgust at experimenting on human corpses. Why is this a problem in this world? It needs more background, especially since this isn't a universal human experience (as in, I don't think you'd have to world build it so much if she was disembowling children alive or something) - pg 7: they were under contract to find this woman and see what she was doing? Ahh. Okay that probably should be very clear from page one. If it was, I think must have been too buried. I also don't know why she needed to be found and looked in on. Are her creations killing things? Maybe WRS? - pls 6-9 seems to be rehashing the same murdered/not murderer philosophy over and over. You could easily condense them down to one page I think - I dislike P. He just de-armed a person who wasn't even remotely threatening. he's mad at her for using dead people for experiments but he has no moral qualms with just killing her? - pg 14: wait, what happened to the witch? She was dead but her consciousness can hop bodies? Is that right? - pg 15: the witch's powers appear to be mostly plot devices and/or author devices. I need to know the boundaries of her magic before I can understand stakes. But speaking of that, the witch's not-death is one of those hallmarks of your writing, wherein people die then don't die. I know we've talked about this before but it really kills tension when people get all these horrible injuries but don't die. I think it might be more fun to actually have her die, and then have them discuss morality on the way out (do they kill her centipedes? What about her franked-people? That'd be cool to read) - pg 16: is there a reason a fairly direct line from Psalms in the King Jame's bible is in here? - pg 18: so... why could they kill the witch this time and not last time? - I don't think there's been enough set up for the ending line
  5. They're one of the mid-sized small presses, with a pretty decent rap. I get review copies of their books a lot, and they seem to have some decent distribution.
  6. I'm not technically late because it isn't technically Monday yet. So...HAH! Overall Much enjoyed! Loved getting to see some of the animals finally, and some action, and our heroes coming together. Only a few notes, and one longish one on queer culture we can get into more if you'd like. Thanks for a fun read! Now let's get to the bottom of things and go kill some dinosaurs! I had this same issue Did I miss something? Was their open enrollment and I missed it?? As I go - pg 3: WRS? Do we know who MC is yet? The Old Man was a bluff, right? - pg 4: Wait! I’ll show you I’m good <-- for some reason I read this first as Wait! I'll show you a good time! and thought, wow, this sure has taken a surprising turn! - what is a nano-zip? - pg 5: likely more WRS but why are they talking about E joining the agency? - pg 6: will forever love the 'priceless princess' t-shirt - pg 8: loving this early action! Very interested in why the things went right for Mo, too! - pg 11: I'm a little disappointed there isn't a touch of internal monologue from Q about E being T's lover and therefore maybe not into men and therefore maybe not into him. I think the thought process would be hilarious, noting how full of himself Q can be sometimes - pg 11: uh, so was M given a shotgun or....??? - pg 12: wouldn't Q be immediate with the why didn't the dinosaurs eat your face?? He just seems very calm - pg 13: I thought it might just be gays they had no taste for.” <-- okay so, love this line, but .... Q is pretty bi. E should pick up on this, I'd think. Gaydar is a real thing. At the very least Mo should have a comment about it - You heard when I said I was gay, right?” <-- why does this need reinforced? It's part of her character to be uncomfortable with her homosexuality, but Q wasn't making a pass at her with the vegan comment, right? If he was, I'd think it'd be more, "I only eat out, and when I do, it's only vegans," or something like that - pg 13: These days I take the position that we’re all just people with choices in any given moment. <-- I would very nearly punch someone in the face if they said that to me after I came out to them. It's cool if Q is very sexuality fluid, but not validating someone else's identity is not cool. This is actually a big point of contention in the queer community, especially several years back. It's a generational breakdown issue, too, where the younger millennials tend to identify as without an identity, simply 'queer,' where older ones, Gen Xs, Boomers, etc., fought hard for those identities to be taken seriously and to be able to say them out loud. The whole 'okay but just love the person not the genitalia' is currently being tossed around by some trans activists and (right or wrong, this isn't the place to have the discussion) and it's another one of those identity/sexuality/gender issues that's just... very complex and intersectional. I guess what I'm saying is, it sounds like Q is saying 'yeah, you say you're gay but you could make a different choice later,' which makes me very much not like him. It's too close to 'you're a lesbian? But have you tried being with a man? Maybe you just haven't met the right one?' - pg 13: oh good! Looks like M will get a shotgun!!
  7. Just under the ole wire! Overall This piece seemed to lag in places. I think it was too dialogue heavy without enough setting or motivation. A lot of the first few pages could be condensed down into one, and I think you rehash a lot of the same discussion material several times. Might be worth a cleaning pass to see what could be trimmed, and where you could sneak in some worldbuilding and character fleshing out (that isn't in dialogue form). Completely agree I had this same issue This was also my problem. I still don't know what the stakes are or the motivations, so it's still hard to get invested. As I go - you've got a lot of passive voice in those first few lines. Switching to active here at the start would probably help - pg 1: forbidding people to hate cannot possibly actually keep people from hating - pg 3: why did he just get introduced as a witch? I thought he wasn't a witch. That's what the whole first page established, yes? - pg 4: this is a ton of dialogue on who is going where and doing what, in which no one moves - pg 6: I feel like everything that has happened to this point could be condensed into a single page. I'm not quite sure where any of this is going. It is...dialogue heavy and detail light. - pg 8: I have no idea what is going on. There's a lot of banter about what kind of witch/seeker one of the characters is, and they bought some stuff at a shop. I want to know where this is going, however, or what/who I should be investing in - pg 10: more confusion. Why did the shop keeper sell them a bottle of alcohol that wasn't? What was the motivation of the shop keeper? - the clock tower just sort of appears out of nowhere. I need more description of this town when they enter it - pg 11: tracks? what kind of tracks? animal tracks? train tracks? - pg 11: they have bioluminescent fungi torches?? Uh, can you please describe them? Because that is so cool - pg 12: LOL Princess Bride reference. It sort of changes the tone, though - pg 14: “Hopefully, that woman didn’t make more of these things <-- who what now? The seller didn't make more... keys in oil disguised as alcohol? Why would she? That's a terrible way to get repeat clients. - pg 16: are they walking while they do all this talking? Or are they just standing around some dead rat carcassas (sp?) and rehashing witches again? - pg 16: wait, there are tunnels now? Are they no longer in a town? - pg 17: It's confused enough to kill them, so instead of helping it be less confused, they have to kill it? Why isn't taming it an option? - I do like the idea of a giant centipede
  8. The nutrients are all in the feathers!
  9. I just made porg pie. Feeling very smug. It was supposed to be a Death Star crust but... alas.
  10. Jealous! I would also love to go but I'll likely be in Toronto in August 2020.
  11. Unsurprisingly late, but here! Overall I like the emotional beats with M but mostly I'm confused. WHO is the caller? Why do they have all this information that is so plot convenient? Why isn't E more frantic? Why are they still traveling? I'm very ready at this stage for some resolution, and aside from the emotional beats we just aren't getting it. I like the flow and pacing, but think it should have come a bit earlier. Or we could watch a live attack too! That would sate for a chapter! I had similar feelings to this. If the MC was trying to get Q to think it was TOM, but we still don't know who it is, we are left with no resolution in this late stage chapter. I'm still engaged and very curious! I just want more meat now that we are near the end! As I go - pg 5: wait, the son is back in the picture? From nowhere almost it seems - pg 8: I don't understand the birthday talk. New century? Number with a two in front of it? They aren't talking about her age, right? - pg 12: I'm still antsy. Why are they still traveling? GO DO THE THINGS! although I did enjoy the emotional beats - pg 14: wait so...Mystery person knows where T is...how? For how long? It seems plot convenient - I don't under stand the end. Was it the Old Man? Or no?
  12. I didn't get anything either
  13. Overall I thought the characters were pretty fine for a draft. They are distinct, especially the little dragon thing, and their voices are all a bit different from other characters of yours I have read. So I had few quibbles with that. The story, however, I'm not clear on. It read like a giant worldbuilding dump and I don't know what the actual plot is, the arc, and it lacks an inciting incident. I think this might be more world build wander writing, which I do a ton, and in a final draft could probably be much trimmed back. As I go - you've got a double 'yet' in the second sentence - pg 2: the wolf can smell the meat in a pan? Like, specifically that it's in a pan and not a skillet or a pot? Or a spit? - redundancy on 'little' on page three - pg 4: he gets clothes when he transforms? Interesting. I have questions - pg 6: 'Old Grown Tree' I really want to be something like... tree specific. Like something a tree would call another super cool tree. Like... Maple at the Tree Line or Nurse Log of the Forest. But I realize these are... super nerdy. - pg 8: I was fine until the 'you can tell me about All Cracked..." because this is the place I would expect plot to start, and instead its more worldbuilding backstory - pg 13: I do like the 'male' part before witch. It catches my attention - pg 16: still really wondering what the plot arc is - pg 17: too much worldbuilding. I can't keep it all straight
  14. ETA: LITERALLY THE SECOND this post went through, it popped up in my email! Argh, another sub that didn't come through. @aeromancer could you send me your sub directly? @Silk or @Robinski any thoughts on why subs seem to not be coming through to me? It's sporadic, and they're not in my junk mail or anything. This is the second time now. Thanks in advance for the help!
  15. Great minds think alike????