C_Vallion

11.1.2021 - C_Vallion - Price of Peace - Chapter 17 RevA - (V, G) - 4771 Words

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Hello All!

Sorry for another slightly-late submission.  It was just about set to go, then a sad kiddo with a head cold took priority for the day yesterday.

This is another chapter that had some major trimming (I think it was near 7k words when I started edits).  So there may still be some lingering choppiness from cutting out big sections of text that I'll need a little more distance from to catch.

Content Warning: Violence and Gore

Questions:

  1. Any confusing bits?  Especially any spots where blocking and scene layout might be unclear? 
  2. Do the characters’ actions/motivations/thought processes seem to fit?
  3. Points of interest or engagement?
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As I go:

p5 - I'm not super clear on where Is is right now or which way she's headed, but I think that's intentional?

Bottom of p6 - Is assumes straight away that whoever has the message box is a hostile who took the box from R, but isn't there a decent chance that R is fine and still has the box? I would have thought Is would at least consider that possibility, especially as meeting up with R now would save her from wandering alone in the wilderness.

 

I liked this chapter a lot! It ups the stakes, and I like how Is's character shines through.

1. I didn't have issues with blocking during the fights.

2. Is's motives all fit, and I like how much characterisation there is in the choices she makes and the things she thinks about while under pressure. I'm not sure what the C-ian is doing here or why C is attacking, but I'm guessing that's supposed to be a mystery for now.

3. Generally, I thought the action was very engaging, as well as Is's attempts to make it through the mountains alone. Is dealing with the emotional fallout of the violence while trying to keep a clear head was also very good.

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Sorry I'm late!

I think this chapter worked really well!

There were two points of minor confusion for me, but they were small:

I didn't get that she had decided to take a different horse until the name was mentioned later. Re reading that part, I saw it clearly but it wasn't imediatly obvious on the first pass.

I wasn't sure what the layout was when she decides to dive under the fallen tree, or why he wouldn't have been able to climb up and over or go around it easily. 

The action read very well and I think her thought process was clear and relatable for what she was going through.

 

Well done!

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13 hours ago, Sarah B said:

I think this chapter worked really well!

On 11/2/2021 at 0:55 PM, RedBlue said:

I liked this chapter a lot! It ups the stakes, and I like how Is's character shines through.

Hooray!  Thanks! :) 

On 11/2/2021 at 0:55 PM, RedBlue said:

p5 - I'm not super clear on where Is is right now or which way she's headed, but I think that's intentional?

Correct. Should probably make it clearer that her goal at the moment is just to get away, and to figure out how to get back again later.

On 11/2/2021 at 0:55 PM, RedBlue said:

but isn't there a decent chance that R is fine and still has the box? 

There should be a clearer indication in the previous chapter that this isn't the case, but the thought should probably at least cross her mind. Even if she then calls it out as a vain hope. 

13 hours ago, Sarah B said:

I didn't get that she had decided to take a different horse until the name was mentioned later. Re reading that part, I saw it clearly but it wasn't imediatly obvious on the first pass.

Good to know.  I know I was doing a bunch of trimming and moving things around there to get the horse switch detail across without losing the pacing. I'll see if there's anything obvious that might be making it unclear next time I go through it. 

13 hours ago, Sarah B said:

I wasn't sure what the layout was when she decides to dive under the fallen tree, or why he wouldn't have been able to climb up and over or go around it easily.

I was wondering if this would be an issue.  Like with the horse change, I was trying to make sure I didn't cut too much of the pacing by stopping to go super in-depth on descriptions. I'll have to look at leaning more toward description next time. Or possibly change the obstacle entirely to make it more obvious. 

Ultimately, she's not expecting to get away entirely by going under the tree, but just to buy herself a few extra seconds.  So, it's a big tree, but mostly just enough of an obstacle that he'd have to slow down to clear it or go around it.

 

As always, thanks so much for the thoughts!

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Well I think this is the latest I've been but better than never?

As I go:

pg 2-3. I'm guessing this is one of Is' first times being alone like this in such a precarious situation (though maybe not). She seems pretty on top of things which I think is good but I'm wondering if it's worth highlighting stuff about surviving alone she's not used to in order to drive home the point about how much she's lost. Idk for sure though. 

pg 7. Seems like this is where the story starts to move forward. I wonder if we could get here more quickly.

pg 11. I like the moment about the hostage thing because it feels so Is. With all the action it's been feeling like I'm losing track of her character a bit

pg 12-13. I think we're getting a bit bogged down in hypotheticals here. I think this is one of the cases where it might be more powerful for us to just see what happens instead of going through scenarios

pg 14. I like the bit on her physical state at the end to hammer home how much of a toll this has taken on her. Also conveys what kind of story this will be, with less focus on flashy heroics and more of a realistic struggle to survive.

On 11/2/2021 at 11:13 AM, C_Vallion said:
  • Any confusing bits?  Especially any spots where blocking and scene layout might be unclear? 
  • Do the characters’ actions/motivations/thought processes seem to fit?
  • Points of interest or engagement?

1. Not especially. At least, I wasn't confused more than Is was.

2. This was most of what was on my mind. I'm conflicted because this chapter reads really smoothly and it all makes sense but I also feel like I don't really get a good feel for Is here because everything she does here is pretty standard and doesn't really show off her strengths/weaknesses or much about her personality. Which left me with a feeling of "oh that was pretty good" but also it didn't feel that memorable to me. I think I want to see more of Is' unique traits shining through here. How does she react in this situation that's different than anyone else in the story would? This can be something that helps her, hinders her, or even neither. If there's something already in there that answers the question, maybe it just needs to be highlighted more. 

3. I was hoping we'd see a bit more about magic since this seems like the time to use it given how desperate Is is. Other than seeing how that develops, I'm interested in what she does now that she's on her own.

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On 11/21/2021 at 6:36 PM, Ace of Hearts said:

pg 2-3. I'm guessing this is one of Is' first times being alone like this in such a precarious situation (though maybe not). She seems pretty on top of things which I think is good but I'm wondering if it's worth highlighting stuff about surviving alone she's not used to in order to drive home the point about how much she's lost. Idk for sure though. 

Thanks for pointing this out. I'll have to keep it in mind going forward, because it does tie into the throughline I want to make sure I stress for Is- more.  Right now, it's just coming across as her being sort of stubborn and pseudo-independent, but I want to distinguish early on that it's not so much that as that she wants to prove her own strength and capability.  She sees a lot of her personal value as being tied into her ability to be what her father needs or what the kingdom needs, but other than hiding her pain/fears/emotions (because in her head, if anyone sees her as weak, it's going to reflect back on a weakness of her father or the family as a whole), she has mostly been sheltered from circumstances that might force her to prove that she is strong enough to uphold the family honor (or some such concept she's convinced herself of in order to avoid addressing her vulnerabilities).

So being on her own here should be both terrifying (for the obvious reasons that people are trying to kill her and she's been separated from her allies) and an opportunity to prove (to herself. to Dad. to her vague concept of the people who need to have this proven to them) her value by proving herself able to overcome all obstacles. Which ends up with mixed results. 

On 11/21/2021 at 6:36 PM, Ace of Hearts said:

pg 14. I like the bit on her physical state at the end to hammer home how much of a toll this has taken on her. Also conveys what kind of story this will be, with less focus on flashy heroics and more of a realistic struggle to survive.

Glad this gets across :)

On 11/21/2021 at 6:36 PM, Ace of Hearts said:

2. This was most of what was on my mind. I'm conflicted because this chapter reads really smoothly and it all makes sense but I also feel like I don't really get a good feel for Is here because everything she does here is pretty standard and doesn't really show off her strengths/weaknesses or much about her personality. Which left me with a feeling of "oh that was pretty good" but also it didn't feel that memorable to me. I think I want to see more of Is' unique traits shining through here. How does she react in this situation that's different than anyone else in the story would? This can be something that helps her, hinders her, or even neither. If there's something already in there that answers the question, maybe it just needs to be highlighted more. 

Good to know.  I'll have to keep this in mind, since it probably ties into my thoughts above about her reaction to being on her own.

 

Thanks for the thoughts!

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On 12/6/2021 at 11:28 AM, C_Vallion said:

Thanks for pointing this out. I'll have to keep it in mind going forward, because it does tie into the throughline I want to make sure I stress for Is- more.  Right now, it's just coming across as her being sort of stubborn and pseudo-independent, but I want to distinguish early on that it's not so much that as that she wants to prove her own strength and capability. 

As with many things, looking back on it with this context it's easier for me to see where the story is trying to go. To me it seems like the big way the story tries to do this is by having her seem confident, but then remark on her own stupidity later. The thing is, I personally just attributed that to Is generally being hard on herself rather than her actually not dealing with the situation as well as someone more experienced. Still, I think something along those lines is probably a good way to convey this; it's just that this particular one led me to conclude something different than I should have. 

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