TheDwarfyOne

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  1. Notes as I go: P. 3. The name is a good fit for him! But I’m not sure if “Decay!” is a curse or a translation of his name… P. 5. “Who guided you to the latrines yesterday.” – did she? I don’t remember that. I haven’t read the chapter where the inciting incident occurred – the unicorn-rescue – so I’m confused by how Ir suddenly realises the unicorn was the king. Maybe the names were the same? I’m not sure whether my confusion is an issue with the chapter or a result of my ignorance. P. 6. I find it hard to believe that Ir could learn an instrument in time… her contract lasts a year, and that’s not much time to hone the required skill to pretend to be a professional. Unless they let her play the triangle or something, or she has previous musical experience…? “Ir Ir Ir, I release you” - Unless there’s a known reason for the repetition – I’m thinking like in fairy where swearing something thrice makes it a more potent oath – I’d be inclined to just say “I release you.” I found the BK’s magical ability interesting – suggestion, more than compulsion, perhaps? – but feel he could have made his instructions more succinct. P. 7. “Ir quickly strode” – striding implies speed, so no need to say ‘quickly.’ P. 8. “Ir knew that she herself had more pride than what was strictly necessary when it came to her own skills in the kitchen.” – could be condensed. For instance, “Ir was proud of her own culinary skills.” “It was easy to see it radiating off of B in waves.” Same issue! “It almost visibly radiated from B” or something. “Conquer of monarchies” – conqueror. Nice interaction between P, the secretary, and Ir. It highlights their three distinct characters. I’m glad to have finally met the BK. I have a better fix on his character, and he’s ceased to be an indirect threat.
  2. Apologies for late critique! At least I get to start into the next chapter almost immediately! Notes as I go: P. 2. “P said it with cheerful wistfulness.” – This feels like a ‘show, don’t tell’ moment. Also, the previous bit “I’s curiosity drove her like an itch” struck me as strange. Probably because it made her curiosity seem like an uncomfortable skin condition thing. “Said the capital of Ma with such joy” – Point of note. When cows get excited their tails go up, they raise their heads. They become full of a vibrating energy. They often run wild after, of course, hoofs kicking up and head tossing. But I suspect that last isn’t in P’s character. Really, this is another ‘show, don’t tell’ point. Repetition of ‘first’ in the next line. P. 3. Much better description of the kitchen. I was transported and felt I’s wonder. Though the word is ‘decadent,” not ‘decedent’, ahaha. What you said amounts to “A marvellous, dead-person dream” XD P. 4. “P smiled as she found excuses to lengthen the visits.” I’m having issues describing why this bothered me. Maybe something to do with voice? It feels like, in the middle of I’s exposition, we have a splinter of P. Perhaps “Though Ir noticed P smiled” or something similar? Also, how does one stretch the truth harshly? The bit “She had scabbed both knees,” etc., is a bit long to convey I’s excitement. A sentence would convey the same. Plus I think “she had” is the wrong tense? No doubt Robinski has covered that already though. P. 5. “Bathhouses this morning,” that punched me from the narrative. Maybe change ‘this’ to ‘in the’ or something similar? “Out of his hand, giving a large bovine sigh” I feel we’re missing the actually eating bit. I wondered why she was sighing as she levitated it. Also, though, ‘large bovine sigh’ is a great way to describe the noise. P. 6. “Knowing she would never get the chance to taste the sweet, spicy flavor of cinnamon again.” – loved it. P. 7. “With a flick of her tail, Pem guessed” - sounds like we switched to P’s POV. The para starting “I wasn’t too sure.” – ‘Too’ should probably be ‘so.’ I liked this para. It showed I’s character – of course she’d know more about kitchens and staff relations than P! – and gave us a hint of future mystery. P. 8. Oooooh, the plot thickens. P. 9. Now where did W get identifying tokens… The description with the guards indicates alertness, which made the yawn surprising. P. 10. “He had been warned of their arrival by B’s telepathy.” – Great use of a telepathic creature. “I thought you had said you were coming in as a man this time.” TBK said, taking in the disguise of a servant woman.” Comma after ‘time’ and you can probably remove ‘of a servant woman.’ “P’s schedule had them finish the kitchens two days ago.” – Hah! P. 12. It occurs to me that it’s not just I who knows W’s name, but P as well. P. 14. “Before digging a small brush out of one of her pockets.” – doesn’t she use telekinesis? P. 17. The eminent meeting with TBK definitely makes me want to turn into the next chapter.
  3. And how often do you swim? I can just see you circling the Isle of Arran.... I go for a 6 and a half mile jog/run most days, but it's only made bearable by Audible. I'd get hugely bored if I couldn't 'read' while doing it.
  4. You swim every day? Outside? No matter the weather?
  5. This is a very good point.
  6. Okay. Three POVS so far. P's isn't being repeated. A's is the main. H's is the secondary. The contention is that it's too many POV's at once. Should I then do two chapters in A's POV, then do H's? My concern is that would mess up pacing. But confusing people is potentially worse.
  7. Thanks for critiquing, everyone! @Snakenaps Hrm, good point. Oh, yea, don't do that It's also an historic method of preserving bodies. Alexander the Great was buried in the stuff. Keeping the dead preserved is important in this culture, and the rich have elaborate (and expensive) means of doing so. I figured honey was a cheaper slum-alternative. I... just realised I've been horribly misspelling that word. It's meant to be protuberant. The more you know. Thanks for the critique. Now go wash your eyes with bleach. I know I wanted to after reading about mellification. @Mandamon I'm guessing that's not really an issue, though? It's a new POV character in the second chapter. It's fairly typical to have prologue, First POV, Second POV. Right? Definitely an issue. Will have her be more active. Speaking for a 'union' type deal which would protect workers from the priests. Maybe I should make that clearer. To be fair, he's meant to be a bitter old man who's abusing his daughter, so yay . But I take your point on explaining motivations better. I might add a new scene with her staking the place out after this, but that would probably make this chapter longer than A's previous one, which I don't really want to do. Decisions, decisions. Thanks for your comments. They're always useful. @Turin Turambar Yes, dear? A valid point! I'll have to highlight in this chapter just how incompetent a thief she'd make. Even if she doesn't realise it. Thanks for helping! @Ace of Hearts Well, he can't walk. So he's definitely become inactive. And developed a belly. But I will be sensitive! Hrm. Of course I will. Many thanks for the feedback! I appreciated your what worked vs. what didn't approach. A handy way to do it. @Robinski Not a baaaaaaad thing though! I hope. Or more people are gonna be googling mellification than is strictly necessary. Ah, does it? Care to extrapolate? It's a religious ideal, here. Permanence vs. transience. I didn't feel like delving into the nuts and bolts of religious practice was strictly necessary, though. Background rather than foreground material. Do you want to get Captain Jack Sparrow? Because that is how you get Captain Jack Sparrow. I am embracing descriptivism over the prescriptive rules imposed upon language by Latin-loving (and draconian)18th century grammarians. I totally didn't just make a spelling mistake. Even in slums, people can get adequate food. In modern slums people grow vegetables in sacks with soil and rocks added. Rye bread is the food of the poor. They live very near to a big river, so fish isn't an uncommon resource. But maybe I should change it anyway if it comes across as too extravagant. Yea, gonna have to spruce up dem motivations. I mean, who doesn't? An interesting point. As I mentioned above, he can't move his legs - ergo greatly reducing his ability to perform aerobic (fat-burning) exercises. The question of whether he's staked a monopoly on the food is curious, though. Fair point on the juices. (As an aside, that scene in the movies was an act of cinematographic genius. No blood, very little actual violence on-screen, and yet I still felt the visceral horror. More strongly, in fact, than any other charge - in any movie - has inspired). A thought provoking critique, thanks. @Sarah B Nope, you're right! But I'm thinking a third scene where she's away from the father could cement that notion. Maybe. I believe Snakenaps commented something similar. I'll definitely paint more of the background. Thanks! I'm very glad I found this group.
  8. Notes as I go: P. 1. “I’ve listened for years about the palace kitchens” – a slight rewording to ‘I’ve heard about the palace kitchens for years’? Otherwise it’s confusing, because you hear that type of thing, you don’t listen it. P. 2. Repetition of “first.” Not necessarily bad, but I noticed it. “’Thanks!’ An extra bounce seemed to have been added to P’s step.” – Very awkward phrasing. P. 3. I like the initial description of the kitchen, and its scale! Kinda interested in the interaction between ‘mundane’ and ‘civilized’ here, and wonder whether the turnspit dogs would be mundane or civilized… Hrmmm, the first few sentences of P’s POV seem to be clunky. For instance ‘decided to herself’ would be much better as simply ‘decided’. I think the POV in itself isn’t necessarily a bad idea, but as it stands it doesn’t say much about character or conflict, just gives a single bit of information – that P will keep them in the kitchen longer. This could be handled just as easily through a sentence of dialogue, and it can be implied she’s being kind. P. 5. “her blood hadn’t sung like this for eternity” – again, seems unnecessarily clunky. Yep, the sudden omniscient at the end here was really jarring. You could definitely imply all that with I’s voice instead. Overall: I think you're right to think this would do better condensed. I can see it being reworked into a single scene of a different chapter.
  9. Note: I heavily edited the prologue and chapter one, so the following summary will seem different. Previously: Prologue: P fights some desert tribesmen. When tackling I about his late arrival, it turns out that one tribesman survived. After some dialogue and conflict, it becomes apparent that he possesses a potentially dangerous artifact. P takes it and leaves an angry I behind. Chapter One: A pumps H for info, but gets very little. A nearby noblewoman and a westerner talk to and about him briefly, revealing that he killed his mother - the king's aunt - when very young. A leaves and finds his assistant suffering at the hands of muggers. They attack, taking the artifact. The westerner saves him and brings him to his office, where he reveals the Tr - the 'pope' - died soon after giving him the artifact. Chapter Two (current): New POV character! Hi is at a funeral, looking to conduct business.
  10. July 13th for me, please!
  11. @Snakenaps Thanks for the list! Definitely a lot of fuel for things to distract me from writing. I'm more than 60 sheets into Aegis.... (Cyrus is deffo the big bad, but guessed that from first appearance....) @Robinski I've been consistently strange since childhood. It's a matter of principle! It did lead to good dreams, though. Or should I say.... Funke-y ones? @shatteredsmooth Thanks! Though respectfully disagree, hahah. I'm alright at faces, though by no means stellar. I've tried composing scenes once or twice, it's out of my ballpark. Though I did just finish drawing my D&D character (Icarus, a compulsively-drinking satyr) realising the local settlement has been placed under prohibition. That was lots of fun.
  12. Apologies for double post, but I was asked to show any new drawings. I even tried to give one of them a body for once! It... didn't really work, but I tried.
  13. Ah, under the Aegis, as Odysseus was under the aegis of Athena. Reading through it now! I'm enjoying it. Vaguely reminiscent of your own style. Any more recommendations? I find it hard to find good ones, but I just love the art. Edit: Also, random thought: it's scary how much I identified with Hades, lord of the underworld, in that webcomic
  14. Leviathan, ugh, so long since I've read that. Really enjoyed. I can still see them throwing gold bars out of the zeppelin. Ughhhhh. The Abhorsen books! I knew there were some I forgot to put into my previous list. Another I forgot was the Inkheart books by Cornelia Funke. I loved that series, largely because it literally had people visiting book-worlds. The main character slept with books under her pillow and had a special chest full of books, so I sympathised. And emulated her by sleeping with books under my pillow. Uncomfortable, but I thought it would give me good dreams. I've been reading through Lore Olympus. It took me a bit to get used to the art style, but once I did it was a genuinely touching story. I began a poem on it, actually. Posted here.
  15. I thought I'd try an epic-length Persephone and Hades poem. Here's so far: Prologue Beneath the rolling stone of time Sleeps Hades in a wreath of memory, While in her orchard-dream Persephone Shakes stars from hair of blackbird wings. Together, they could clap the skies And bring its cradle close enough to kiss. But on Olympus bitter gods Would strum away awakenings With words like whips. And so reclined in shells like bombs Persephone and Hades sleep Their plans strawberry dreams held deep Beneath the waves. They have not met. But in the indigo a storm is strained And lightning loves to hit the rod.