kais

05/11/20 - kais - Rosewood Chapter 6 (L) - 4647 words

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L for mild language

Major changes since last sub: J-d now has backstory! M keeps him around because he also is mildly touched by magic, and it’s the closest thing she has to someone like herself. J-s’ allergies are also better established, and the steps at the bar have been better described to note they are rickety, old, and have no backs. 

I have been over and over this chapter, but wonder if the logic is still off. It lays solid groundwork for worldbuilding, and finally gives N and M a heart to heart, but I’m not sure if it works? Any thoughts much appreciated.

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Comments!!!! (LBLs to follow, probably.)

(page 1)

- "Going down was never a problem" - ROFL. Oooh, err. Nudge, nudge, wink, wink. More tea, vicar?

- "This many lamps in such a tight space should have been a problem." - Why? Oh, okay, but then there isn't a problem anyway.

- "make a dry leave rustle" - Why would anyone do that with magic. And, if they could do that, I'm sure they could think of more useful and interesting things to do with it.

- "Good... Very Good." - See, I like JV better already. I feel like the old JV would have made a snide or angry/bitter comment, whereas this just feels more focused, more useful, already.

- "most of the island" - This 'island'  has numerous countries on it. Is it not a continent?

(page 2)

- "He ran his hands up the stone" - Yes! Now he's inquisitive instead of angry / bitter. This is a great improvement. As an engineer, I approve inquisitiveness.

- "Don’t touch things" - Okay, Mom!

- "Grey or not" - Why does JV yell this at L, when it's M who is called grey? Also, there's no way she can work loose a light fitting when she's just trailing her fingers over the stonework.

- "We’re almost there" - How does M know this?

(page 3)

- "against the wall and slid behind him, both of them sucking in their gut to make it work" - I can't picture this. Don't know what's happening.

(page 4)

- "She hadn’t meant to snip" - I did not read her words as a snip / snipe.

(page 6)

- "like it moved chocolate" - Not a great description of a choco fountain.

- "A sculpture of a horse made from blackberries" - Gross, but somehow fitting.

(page 7)

- "just under the buffet" - to me, the buffet is the whole meal, but I think you mean this in the sense of a piece of furniture called a buffet? I was not clear on that. Also, why would she look underneath something. Why would the note be hidden? Just leave it out in plain sight.

- "smug caricature" - I don't buy this. If she can't draw a decent image sketch of a comb, she's not going to be able to draw a face showing smugness. Drawing faces is way more difficult than drawing a comb, and conveying emotion accurately, especially one as obscure as smugness (compared to happy or sad), is going to be way beyond the artist's abilities.

- How are there windows in the corridor when they are underground? Remembering the M would be super sensitive about going upwards. Oh, wait, there was mention of them going uphill. And, I would accept a steady grade like that not troubling her, but no way were they walking long enough to be back up at ground level, IMO.

(page 8)

- "menagerie of foods" - Meh. This excludes all vegetables, which seems unlikely.

- "had been out of tea" - good, this kind of detail is more convincing.

- "let L do the talking" - not sure how much evidence we've actually seen of L's silver tongue.

- "She saw the throne room" - confused. How is it down from here? Don't see how the servants area would be above the throne room.

(page 9)

- "evening sun came through the windows" - kind of odd there would be a corridor with exterior windows on it. Windows in a castle would be at a premium, I would think, and something of value to be afforded to important residents, not wasted on a corridor, and therefore the corridor would be between the rooms, without windows.

- Like the description of the library. Nicely done.

(page 11)

- "like picking a scab" - Awesome line, just awesome.

- "...get used to it" - I'm much, much happier with this conversation than the one in the tavern. It's much clearer what their characters and agendas are. The point and thrust and direction of the conversation are so much clearer.

- "parse" - Sorry, @kais, this is just the wrong word at the wrong time, and I'm off on a general rant. Not aimed at you, aimed at the use of this word in popular fiction. I'm thoroughly sick of this word. It was the hip, new word like two years ago, but now it just gets in the way of better words, IMO. Meriam Webster says:

1ato divide (a sentence) into grammatical parts and identify the parts and their relations to each other
bto describe (a word) grammatically by stating the part of speech and explaining the inflection and syntactical relationships
2to examine in a minute way analyze critically

Clearly we are looking at the last one here, not the first two, but is it that though, really? Why does M need to examine in a minute way, or even critically? She sees and expression on N's face and doesn't know what it is. But, instead of focussing on that, I'm willing to bet that a fair proportion of readers of this or any other book will be wondering what parse means, really. Rant ends. Sorry you got both barrels there.

(page 12)

- "out of sheer habit" - Not sure how this is a habit, or what purpose it serves.

(page 13)

- "What in the hell does that mean?" - Hallelujah. I love it when a character asks a straight question when they don't understand something. This, and other plain talking in this conversation are what I thought was absent at the tavern. A lot of obfuscation for no apparent reason. It happens all the time in film and on TV, characters deliberately not talking to each other because of plot reasons, when issues would easily and logically be sorted out.

(page 14)

- "still trying to parse the word ball" - You definitely only get one per chapter, maybe even per book. The good news is this seems to be a text book example of definition 1b.

(page 15)

- "five minutes alone..." - LOL.

- Super close for the chapter. good strong, arc.

Overall 

I like this chapter more than the last one, and a lot more than the one at the tavern. There was a very clear arc, good progression and a fair bit of exploration, which tends to do a good job standing in for tension. The character interactions were all good and convincing, and it like what I saw of JV's character/tone in this one. The discussion between M and N was excellent. Very convincing: it sounded like real people talking about real things, and not a bunch of double talk and vagueness, which is where I felt I was after the tavern chapter. Very nice job here. I'm very much keyed up for the next chapter.

Issue - Magic: lack thereof. Magic is mentioned from time to time, but we never see it used in any kind of meaningful way. My grave concern is that it's going to pop up when a bit of something different is required, but it will not feel anything like integral to the world. This will be bad, and I will complain (So, what's new? :P ).

Enjoyed that. More of the same, please!

(Few LBLs sent, nothing much.)

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I enjoyed the food scene and the scene with N a lot. I felt it did help the story along. However, is there a reason that they talk about the wall in the tunnel? If not, it seems like everytime the whole gang is together they are a bit incompetant or easily distracted...

Also please consider this information for all the scenes that anyone thinks about stealing something expensive (specifically in reference to page 5 where M wants to try and steal everything)! I recently watched a historical video that invovled Marie Antoinette and a VERY expensive necklace. Apparently, if something is TOO expensive and only the royal family can buy it, then a lot of people will TURN IT AWAY. Because crafting and stuff wasnt mass produced and breaking down and reselling expensive items wasnt much of a thing or too expensive. So, if the gang steals something, they have to be aware that it can be sold or traded. And not sure how much history you are putting into this but books used to be embrodered with gold. So when she says the books weren't worth much, I was upset.(But thats me as a book reader, NO BOOKS ARE USELESS BOOKS! I WILL FIGHT)

For page 10 I commented that she hates princesses but fantasizes about them? Or is it just N she does this with?

Then for the talk between M and N I felt that as someone who gets annoyed and angry super easily, she caves really fast into agreeing considering she was all, "PROTECT J"!!! The only part that made it believable was the last few paragraphs were N is touching M and speaking to her gently  and making all these promises about honesty and money. I really liked that last page. For me, I was like yasss we see some seduction, some honest feelings, some gentleness, the beginings of LOVE. (insert girly sigh).

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I liked this a lot better than the last chapter, but it still doesn't have the same pull that the earlier ones did. 

The banter while going down the stairs didn't land right, and got a little hard to follow at some points (mentioned below). M's mixed reaction to the princess didn't quite land right for me either. Sometimes a love-hate thing can work, but this felt too wishy washy. 

As I read:

"Stop!" Jv spun and yelled at L as her nails..."G or not, I will... This was where I started to have trouble with the banter. The "G or not part" initially made me think Jv was talking to M. After rereading, I realized what he meant, but it might be good to reword. 

Watched J scratch... "Ignore it Jv." It seemed like an awkward transition from thought to dialogue becuase of she's thinking of one person but talking to next. 

The description and speculation of the stone was interesting, but because of how it was part of the banter, it got lost in it. 

It was interesting how differently L and M reacted to the stone. I'm guessing that's a hint for something. 

When they walked into the room with all the food I was thinking of fairy tales and myths where if you eat the food, you're trapped in Faerie or the Underworld. 

"Trap" L eyed the dripping blueberries. On once hand, I was totally agreeing with L, but then because of all the detail with N and the prophecy, I assumed it was all set up by her.

"puffy enough already" At first I thought she was calling J fat, then I remembered he was allergic to fruit. N seemed to be aware of all his allergies, so I was wondering why she put so much fruit in the feats. 

...poorly drawn rendition... Does N think M is illiterate? Or is she just being snarky?

"sweet, salty viscosity..." I love this description and now I want corn on the cob drenched in butter, but it's not in season. I'm weird-- there are certain foods I only like when they're locally grown.

I loved the scab metaphor! 

I'm wondering how the crew is going to react to N's people coming for them and not M herself. 

Also snickering about M having to go up to the third floor. 

Looking forward to the next chapter! 

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Hi,

The beginning  with the lamps I found boring. Also, I like the mystery with how N knows what's going on, but I feel like prophesy is the boring way out here.

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I think the idea of this chapter is good, but there are a few issues:

I like that you show character by having people talking about the wall, but it goes on way too long and doesn't seem to serve a purpose, even for straight worldbuilding.

The note is just strange. Not sure why there's directions and then a cutesy drawing.

I'm mildly frustrated by N's refusal to say anything helpful. I don't really know what M's plan is, and I don't know what N's plan is save she keeps harping on prophesy. But then at the end she says she only needs M for a week? So what's her aim? What does the prophesy do? Right now M and N are just talking, but I don't have a direction for their relationship.

Also, for some reason was not expecting N to not be the ruler of the country, for some reason, even though she's a princess. Was not expecting her mother to be the ruler.


Notes while reading
pg 1: "not looked back up at the way they’d come."
--Hmmm...I don't know if looking/going up to ground level works the same way in most people with a fear of heights. Might need to take a poll.

pg 1: "having to jump over a meter from the last step to the floor."
--That's a big step!

pg 1: "Electricity was still new enough"
--huh. Didn't know they had this tech.

pg 2: "A rain of dust followed, and a dent the size of a pancake formed in the wall."
--so...is she incredibly tough/strong, or is the wall made of cheese? I would think if she can make casually dents in stone, she'd have trouble picking up mugs without breaking them.

pg 3: “Yup. It’s crystal talc.”
--ok, so she's not that strong.

pg 4: with M here. I don't know why there's a protracted discussion about the walls.

pg 4: "dragon bones"
--is this why he's interested? I don't see why he wants to go digging through the walls, just because they're a strange material.

pg 5: I am deeply suspicious of an obviously newly-laid feast right in front of them. Why is no one questioning this or where the people who made it are?

pg 6: "She’d eaten maybe three of those things in her life"
--are they all particularly hungry? I don't remember than from last chapter.

pg 7: "Meet me in the library. Leave your crew with the food."
--ok, well that explains the feats anyway.

pg 7: "Under that was a simple diagram"
--does the princess think she can't read?

pg 9: "dragons stitched deeply out of proportion"
--does...she know what a dragon looks like?

pg 10: "dozen gold stars"
--What are these? I can't help but think of gold star stickers, but I don't think that's it...

pg 12: “Make sure of what?” 
--I also have this question.

pg 12: "Your guy has a spot with the royal guard."
--Her brother? Jav?

pg 12: "The baker"
--is this L?

pg 13: "so flammable she was afraid to sneeze."
--does she, er, breathe fire when she sneezes?

pg 13: "put this together"
--put what together? I don't even really see hints of a plan and it mystery is getting to be frustrating as a reader too.

pg 14: "It’s the only way to get you the comb."
--I'm fairly sure that's false, and I would think M would call her on it too.

pg 14: "because the queen"
--oh wait. I thought N was the ruler. I guess "princess" should have been a hint, but I wasn't expecting her mother to still be on the throne.

pg 14: "The price of the comb has to be a ball.” 
--like, there's definitely something going on behind the scenes, but I feel like the reader needs a little glimpse of it by now.

pg 15: "It’s also not how prophecies work."
--there. If N just drops a few lines about prophecy, then at least we know what kind of plan she's following. Right now it's all too vague.

pg 15: "I just need you to do this one thing."
--welp, now I'm confused again. N ws obviously coming on to her, but now says she can leave after a week if she wants?

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As per usual, didn't read the previous comments. 

Thoughts as I go!

Pg 1, "Going back up, she didn’t want to think about."  What's the height limit for her fear? I'm kinda picturing M riding shorter horses, almost ponies or maybe ponies. Like 14.2-15hh. Of course, being M, she'd probably claim shorter horses are better for dismounting faster or being easier to hide in bushes or something.

Pg 1, "She saw no cobwebs" Suspicious...

Pg 1, "lamps were spherical with a sort of knob shape on either end" If there are trains...are there lightbulbs? When were lightbulbs invented???

...

Apparently lightbulbs have a kind-of history all the way back to the late 1700's. A more recognizable lightbulb was late 1800's. So could be a kind of lightbulb?

Pg, 1, "make a dry leave leaf rustle." 

Pg 1, " Arc lamps" Fancy, big lightbulbs.

Pg 2, "L tried to touch the glass" Oooh, hot!

Pg 2, " pleased with the trickle of warmth" I wonder if the warmth is because of the electricity, or something else...

Pg 2, " I will strangle you if you keep that up" I would have threatened violence as well.

Pg 3, "It’s crystal talc" Today I learned about a new mineral.

Pg 3, "A gas maybe?" Today, our group of heroes busts through a flimsy wall, release an unknown gas, and die.

Pg 4, "And…can’t you feel it?" Maaaagic instincts??? Or simply curiosity? Hmm...

Pg 5, "I think I’m hungry," You're not you when you're hungry. Eat a Snickers.

Pg 5, " marsupial tiger fur" That is...bizarre and weird. Is it a kangaroo with stripes, or a tiger with a pouch?

Pg 6, "a fountain that smelled like it moved chocolate." Grammar. I love chocolate fountains... This paragraph is making me so hungry...

Pg 6, " Guinea pig" What does guinea pig taste like? Does this go with the blue corn juice? 

Pg 6, "A sculpture of a horse" I am happy.

Pg 6, "Trap?" Last book I read with a giant feast was the novel adaptation of Pan's Labyrinth. There was definitely a feast trap with in that book/movie.

Pg 7, "saw the balls of dust and skittering spiders in the corners near the legs" This sounds like my house: clean where it counts, dust bunnies where people don't look.

Pg 7, " what appeared to be a smug caricature" Hahahaha, I love it.

Pg 7, "LIBRARY: QUESTIONS ANSWERED HERE PLUS MONEY." My kind of library! 

Pg 9, "butter staining the worn carpet runner" Due to carpet, I am hoping a fall down the stairs is not necessary. 

Pg 10, "on the doorjamb" I have spent two decades incorrectly thinking it was doorjam. Door jam. How does that logically make sense?

Pg 10, "Books piled too close to the unlit fireplace" Blasphemy. 

Pg 11, "cream colored, soft cotton pants" I have always admired the boldness and courage of those who wear pale pants.

Pg 14, " It’s the only way to get you the comb." Not for M to earn the comb...but for N to be able to give her the comb...hmmmm...

Pg 15, " silly harvest ball" Fancy ball trope...yeeeeeees...

Pg 15, "the queen" Not mother. Out of habit being a princess, or another reason?

Pg 15, "It’s also not how prophecies work." I tend to be biased negatively towards prophecies, but since this is a book of tropes, I shall withhold judgement.

This was fun, just like the last chapters! 

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On 5/11/2020 at 3:07 PM, Robinski said:

Going down was never a problem" - ROFL. Oooh, err. Nudge, nudge, wink, wink. More tea, vicar?

I have tried very hard to put sex puns all over the place in this. I feel seen.

On 5/11/2020 at 3:07 PM, Robinski said:

This 'island'  has numerous countries on it. Is it not a continent?

I was trying to show it was tiiiiiny. Maybe I need to look at the travel distance more

On 5/11/2020 at 3:07 PM, Robinski said:

Also, why would she look underneath something. Why would the note be hidden? Just leave it out in plain sight.

This is a solid point. I was thinking because she knows the others will enter first and doesn't want them reading it? If she saw this scene already, she'd know M would look under the buffet, so put it there. I think I need to make that clearer.

On 5/11/2020 at 3:07 PM, Robinski said:

don't buy this. If she can't draw a decent image sketch of a comb, she's not going to be able to draw a face showing smugness. Drawing faces is way more difficult than drawing a comb, and conveying emotion accurately, especially one as obscure as smugness (compared to happy or sad), is going to be way beyond the artist's abilities.

Good call. It's actually a lot sharper if I delete it and just mentioned the drawing of the comb

On 5/11/2020 at 3:07 PM, Robinski said:

How are there windows in the corridor when they are underground?

Have added another staircase

On 5/11/2020 at 3:07 PM, Robinski said:

I'm off on a general rant.

LOL it's okay! I'm not married to the word at all

On 5/11/2020 at 3:07 PM, Robinski said:

Super close for the chapter. good strong, arc.

hoorah!

On 5/11/2020 at 3:07 PM, Robinski said:

agic: lack thereof. Magic is mentioned from time to time, but we never see it used in any kind of meaningful way. My grave concern is that it's going to pop up when a bit of something different is required, but it will not feel anything like integral to the world. This will be bad, and I will complain (So, what's new?

One of the biggest edits this time around is to seed magical discussion in early on. So M keeps J-D around because he clearly is touched by magic, too. And she is interested in the princess because she appears to also have a rare magical ability. I think adding these in add a bit more tension and should help better suss the worldbuilding. Thank you for the edits, @Robinski!

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On 5/11/2020 at 10:19 PM, CherishLarain said:

However, is there a reason that they talk about the wall in the tunnel? If not, it seems like everytime the whole gang is together they are a bit incompetant or easily distracted...

There is a very big reason for it, so if it pinged as odd, that is perfect! I'm hoping it sticks in reader's minds.

On 5/11/2020 at 10:19 PM, CherishLarain said:

So, if the gang steals something, they have to be aware that it can be sold or traded.

This was actually a line or two in the forest scene when they had bags of loot sitting around they couldn't move yet. So hooray for historical accuracy!

On 5/11/2020 at 10:19 PM, CherishLarain said:

but books used to be embrodered with gold. So when she says the books weren't worth much, I was upset.(But thats me as a book reader, NO BOOKS ARE USELESS BOOKS! I WILL FIGHT)

LOL! M isn't a big fan of books...

On 5/11/2020 at 10:19 PM, CherishLarain said:

I commented that she hates princesses but fantasizes about them? Or is it just N she does this with?

Yes? I'll go look at the line.

On 5/11/2020 at 10:19 PM, CherishLarain said:

I really liked that last page. For me, I was like yasss we see some seduction, some honest feelings, some gentleness, the beginings of LOVE. (insert girly sigh).

This is 100% what I want. Glad the end part worked for you. I'll take another pass at the dialogue for sure. Thank you so much, @CherishLarain!

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6 hours ago, kais said:

If she saw this scene already, she'd know M would look under the buffet, so put it there. I think I need to make that clearer.

Right. I had no idea N's prescience was so specific, like watching TV.

6 hours ago, kais said:

I think adding these in add a bit more tension and should help better suss the worldbuilding.

Agree :) 

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On 5/12/2020 at 10:59 AM, shatteredsmooth said:

!" Jv spun and yelled at L as her nails..."G or not, I will... This was where I started to have trouble with the banter. The "G or not part" initially made me think Jv was talking to M. After rereading, I realized what he meant, but it might be good to reword. 

Watched J scratch... "Ignore it Jv." It seemed like an awkward transition from thought to dialogue becuase of she's thinking of one person but talking to next. 

The description and speculation of the stone was interesting, but because of how it was part of the banter, it got lost in it. 

It was interesting how differently L and M reacted to the stone. I'm guessing that's a hint for something. 

Hmm. Okay. trying to rework this so it is smoother.

On 5/12/2020 at 10:59 AM, shatteredsmooth said:

Or is she just being snarky?

She was being snarky, but I've deleted the line

On 5/12/2020 at 10:59 AM, shatteredsmooth said:

Looking forward to the next chapter! 

Glad that it was just that bit in the passageway that was an issue. I think I've got it cleaned up. Thank you for the comments, @shatteredsmooth!

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On 5/12/2020 at 6:32 PM, Turin Turambar said:

The beginning  with the lamps I found boring. Also, I like the mystery with how N knows what's going on, but I feel like prophesy is the boring way out here.

Thanks for these, @Turin Turambar. I've shortened the passage scene and tried to clarify more on the prophecy so here's hoping it reads smoother.

 

On 5/14/2020 at 11:51 AM, Mandamon said:

I like that you show character by having people talking about the wall, but it goes on way too long and doesn't seem to serve a purpose, even for straight worldbuilding.

I've cut half the dialogue out from this section. That should speed things up considerably. 

On 5/14/2020 at 11:51 AM, Mandamon said:

The note is just strange. Not sure why there's directions and then a cutesy drawing

This clearly didn't work. Cute part deleted!

On 5/14/2020 at 11:51 AM, Mandamon said:

I'm mildly frustrated by N's refusal to say anything helpful. I don't really know what M's plan is, and I don't know what N's plan is save she keeps harping on prophesy.

Hmm. I'd like to revisit this after the next submission. This next one will have N lay out the whole prophecy thing, and there is space and time then in that chapter for M to react to it. I'll be curious to see what you all think should potentially move forward in the chapters. I've done a bit more in earlier chapters already with M being interested in N's apparent prophesy ability (little bit of magic, just like her?), and given a few more specifics in this chapter. 

On 5/14/2020 at 11:51 AM, Mandamon said:

But then at the end she says she only needs M for a week? So what's her aim? What does the prophesy do?

Ah okay. I'm not sure how to fix this part. I was hoping to keep N's real goals hidden until about halfway through, so maybe I need to give her a 'cover' here? I've tweaked this part:

Spoiler

I could, but first of all, I don’t have it here because I don’t keep valuables where thieves can steal them, and secondly, then I wouldn’t get to see you in clothes that actually fit. It’s also not how prophecies work. I don’t get a choice, you don’t get a choice, the best we can do is follow the rules and get through it. If I want to seal this railroad deal, I need you, and I need you at a ball. This one works.” She made a shooing motion with her left hand. “One week for the comb. A pouch of gold stars for each of you, too. Is that enough?”

I've done more backseeding of railroad events, too, so I think this should work for now.

On 5/14/2020 at 11:51 AM, Mandamon said:

is this why he's interested? I don't see why he wants to go digging through the walls, just because they're a strange material.

I've greatly cut down this discussion

On 5/14/2020 at 11:51 AM, Mandamon said:

Why is no one questioning this or where the people who made it are?

I've brought out this discussion a bit more

On 5/14/2020 at 11:51 AM, Mandamon said:

does...she know what a dragon looks like?

She does NOT and I'm glad this pinged as weird!

On 5/14/2020 at 11:51 AM, Mandamon said:

What are these?

Sorry, a measurement of coin. Have clarified

On 5/14/2020 at 11:51 AM, Mandamon said:

but I feel like the reader needs a little glimpse of it by now.

Yup! Have moved railroad C plot forward

On 5/14/2020 at 11:51 AM, Mandamon said:

If N just drops a few lines about prophecy, then at least we know what kind of plan she's following. Right now it's all too vague.

Check! More discussion of this earlier on

On 5/14/2020 at 11:51 AM, Mandamon said:

welp, now I'm confused again. N ws obviously coming on to her, but now says she can leave after a week if she wants?

Hmm...okay, need help but involves a spoiler:

Spoiler

So the main crux of this romance is that N has seen visions of her and M in a relationship, married, sex, etc, along with a series of events that lead to that. She's dead set on making this come true and following her little playbook. So she knows M won't leave after a month, so there's no threat to telling her she can.

How I can write this scene so it doesn't bounce readers, however, I'm not sure. 

Thanks as always, @Mandamon!

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On 5/14/2020 at 9:40 PM, Snakenaps said:

What's the height limit for her fear? I'm kinda picturing M riding shorter horses, almost ponies or maybe ponies. Like 14.2-15hh. Of course, being M, she'd probably claim shorter horses are better for dismounting faster or being easier to hide in bushes or something.

You know, this is a really solid point that I had completely overlooked. I was trying to have her not be afraid of heights so much as having her feet off solid ground, so horses would definitely fall into that category. Although the idea of her riding a pony is so hilarious I might just go with that...

Hello from the future! This change is hilarious and I have done it throughout. M now rides a cob

On 5/14/2020 at 9:40 PM, Snakenaps said:

When were lightbulbs invented???

I'm cruising late 1800s-ish for this, which is right around when we started getting arc lamps, light bulbs, etc.

On 5/14/2020 at 9:40 PM, Snakenaps said:

Today, our group of heroes busts through a flimsy wall, release an unknown gas, and die.

It's a very short story apparently...

On 5/14/2020 at 9:40 PM, Snakenaps said:

or a tiger with a pouch?

Tiger with a pouch. Native to Australia and SUPER cool, but extinct

On 5/14/2020 at 9:40 PM, Snakenaps said:

What does guinea pig taste like?

It tastes like a cross between duck and rabbit. Very high in micronutrients though. It would pair well with blue corn juice, yes.

On 5/14/2020 at 9:40 PM, Snakenaps said:

I have always admired the boldness and courage of those who wear pale pants.

I have banned white clothes from my household. 

On 5/14/2020 at 9:40 PM, Snakenaps said:

This was fun, just like the last chapters! 

yay! So glad you liked it! The pony edit will be excellent. Thank you @Snakenaps

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1 hour ago, kais said:

M now rides a cob

I love this, because when I was thinking, "What pony breed would I use?" I absolutely went straight for a cob. I must know though, what color?

1 hour ago, kais said:

Tiger with a pouch. Native to Australia and SUPER cool, but extinct

Today I learned this is actually a thing, and not like the platypus bear from Avatar the Last Airbender.

1 hour ago, kais said:

It tastes like a cross between duck and rabbit. Very high in micronutrients though. It would pair well with blue corn juice, yes

Considering how much I have been bitten by evil little classroom guinea pigs, I think I would try it if ever given the chance. That, and blue corn juice.

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24 minutes ago, Snakenaps said:

love this, because when I was thinking, "What pony breed would I use?" I absolutely went straight for a cob. I must know though, what color?

I think I decided black and white? Open to suggestions!

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6 minutes ago, kais said:

I think I decided black and white? Open to suggestions!

By black and white, I would assume you mean a black pinto. There are four main patterns: tobiano, overo, sabino, and splashed. You can just say black pinto, though, without issue. 

Tobiano:

Pinto Dutch Warmblood Horses for Sale

Overo:

Introduction to Genetics, Case Study 2: Lethal white and frame ...

Sabino:

Pin on Gypsy Vanner Horses

Splashed:

I prefer the tobiano pattern, but this splashed white overo is a ...

Is this what you mean, or are you leaning towards spotted patterns commonly found on Appaloosas?

I myself tend to be a massive sucker for dappled buckskins:

Pin on Cream - Buckskin - Buttermilk (Bay   Cream)

Dappled buckskin tobiano:

Buckskin Homozygous Tobiano now Standing in Tennessee! ❤ liked on Polyvore

Thank you for letting me rant about horses!!!

 

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Black pinto cob it is! Although I have to say, I love those dappled ones as well!

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5 minutes ago, kais said:

Black pinto cob it is! Although I have to say, I love those dappled ones as well!

I approve! A good solid choice! 

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4 hours ago, kais said:
On 5/14/2020 at 2:51 PM, Mandamon said:

welp, now I'm confused again. N ws obviously coming on to her, but now says she can leave after a week if she wants?

Hmm...okay, need help but involves a spoiler:

  Hide contents

So the main crux of this romance is that N has seen visions of her and M in a relationship, married, sex, etc, along with a series of events that lead to that. She's dead set on making this come true and following her little playbook. So she knows M won't leave after a month, so there's no threat to telling her she can.

How I can write this scene so it doesn't bounce readers, however, I'm not sure. 

Ok, so it sounds like it's important for the reader to know at least some of this backstory. Since this is all tropey anyway, what if you put in a one-scene POV at the beginning or after the first chapter with N reacting to information, or talking to the soothsayer, or something to give us some of this information?

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Overall, thought this was pretty solid. Don't have much in the way of advice other than fixing a couple mechanical hiccups. Enjoyed the character banter a lot (kinda question having two characters whose names start with Ja), dialogue seemed pretty natural, great visual detail. Page numbers correspond to Google Docs. I can mark up JPEGs of each page and send them to you in the future, if you wish. 

Oh, also, I'd replace any and all sentence-interrupting dashes with full hyphens. 

Pg. 2:

“We can contemplate light fixtures later. Right now, let’s keep moving. I don’t want to eat dinner down here.”—I haven't read the prior chapter, so I'm going to assume they brought nibbles down there with them. If not, probably need to set that up so the foreshadowing makes sense in isolation.

M squeezed into the lead and they walked, single file,—Don't need that last comma before the hyphen. 

Pg. 3:

“Don’t touch things you can’t identify!”—But he just identified it. 

Pg. 4:

“J, stop.”

“I don’t like it here, even if it is well-swept."—Added dash. 

Pg. 5:

“Yes, I noticed. Keep moving.”

“You don’t have to be an chull about it.”—Didn't seem like a mean thing to say to begin with. 

“This is really unexpected,” J said.—Feels a bit telly, not quite showy. 

...it was the only monarchy that allowed game hunting and the only one with a port to have the animals shipped in from...—I'd just say 'shipping port.' Or maybe 'a port to ship the animals.' 

Pg. 6:

She saw wide and small kernel corn sitting in butter baths, a loaf of crusty bread that smelled so strongly she could taste it. She saw blueberries with ice crystals still defrosting on their surface arranged in the outline of a carnation across a delicate porcelain dish.—I'd replace the 2nd 'she saw' with 'and' to avoid repetition. 

Pg. 7:

Just under the words was a poorly drawn rendition of her mother’s comb, and what appeared to be a smug caricature of N's face. Under that was a simple diagram with smiley-faced arrows, showing the path to a box marked LIBRARY: QUESTIONS ANSWERED HERE PLUS MONEY.—You add so much character with so little and it's awesome. 

Pg. 8:

M stood and walked to the door, bypassing the food, though...

J grabbed her forearm. “G,” he said softly.—I feel like a declaration of regicide would not be reacted to 'softly.' 

Pg. 10:

She wore a green gown of some velvet-like material but peeking from beneath it M saw worn, brown leather boots.—I'd move the bolded phrase to the end, after 'boots.' And add a comma to after 'material.'

She found a dozen gold stars in the bottom-right drawer

M's skin goosefleshed.—Pretty sure gooseflesh doesn't have a verb tense. I'd just say 'prickled.'

Pg. 14:

...had involved a princess flirting with her in a room so flammable...

Pg. 15:

I’ll give it to you, okay.—Replace period with question mark. 

 

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