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01/09/2017 - Vreeah - Dreamt and Lost - Wounds Left Behind & Maraud (1683)


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Hello folks! Hope the year is off to a good start for y'all.

I've written two shorter chapters this week. They're mostly here to set things up, more or less.

I feel odd this week—not exactly about the chapters, but my head is light and fuzzy. I can't put my finger on why. I honestly just gave Ellis a headache because my head's in a weird place. Uh, I'm not sure why I went on about that, but there ya go.

Please let me know what you think!

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Overall, a little confused on some of the plot, and Ellis is again being very overprotective of his sister.

pg 1: A page of description before getting into any dialogue or plot movement. Starting to skim.

pg 2: "had a dreamgarb that could figure out all the people who used the washroom recently"
--I'd like a little more solidity to the magic. What can it or can it not do? Can it do anything, if you have the right dream?

pg 3: "He needed to be there if Sofia came back and they demanded a blood test to ensure her safety"
--why? Can she not defend herself?
--evidently:  "Yeah, she's fine." Ellis said. "She's good at protecting herself."

pg 3: "El-uh... newcomer!"
--why would he stop saying Ellis' name to call him "newcomer?"

pg 4: "What would they do if a kid's scared of the dark, or small spaces?"
--Good question. Now I'm wondering about that.

pg 4: "None of what you said means anything to me."
--So Lothurn knows Silla? Confused. Why would Silla know more about this than the experienced Lothurn?
--Oh wow..I've ben confusing Silla and Sofia. Makes a lot more sense now. Might want to give some character tags to identify them.

pg 5: "since the nightmare still hadn't fully recovered."
--recovered how?

pg 5: "The wooden stock of the musket morphed into a wheeled bracket to hold the metal cannon"
--it seems very powerful to be able to summon a cannon out of nowhere.

Pg 6: Sort of confused what's going on. Where did the sentries come from? Does the
nursery know they're protecting them?

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You're doing a lot better with your ending sentences, in that they're ending as a hook. The issue is that the segments are not long enough for me to ever get a handle on the plot, or what is really at stake. The dream garbs too, are so interesting, and I want to really see them, but their descriptions are always sort of glossed over. You might consider making them less expansive so you can spend some time really detailing how they work and what they look like. Also, fair warning below, while it is well understood that physics and I are not friends (my eternal apologies to @Robinski and @Mandamon), trees, machetes, these things I know. There might be a small freak out below. :) 


As I go

- page two: Why does he need to be there for Sophia? She seems fine. Reading a bit farther, does she have something magical in her blood that can't be found out? I'm a little confused.

- page three: that first segment could use some punching up. It just sort of wanders. Its good information, it just doesn't seem to be going anywhere

- page five: woah woah WOAH there. He felled a tree with a single swing of a machete? Was it actually a clump of grass? Machetes are really useful, don't get me wrong, but you don't fell anything with them, not with a single swing. Machete action is very wrist snapping and mean to segment off strips. They're also flimsy sheets of metal and there is no way a machete would cut through even a sapling, unless we're talking a four-year-old twig that is the height of your knee (and at that point, just step on it). #woodnerd #iuseamacheteforaliving

- the wood and bark combine to make a grey railing? Eh? They working with American beech? Not a lot of grey-barked trees in the world 

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It's difficult to marvel for very long, but we've got most of a page of really meandering description that I'm not sure there's much of a point to.


some of these phrasings are really awkward.'dreamgarb that could figure out who used the washroom recently', eg.

I believe the word you want is feign, rather than fake, but far more pertinent (and I'm assuming this wasn't addressed in last week's) is that I still have absolutely no reason why Ellis isn't the slightest bit concerned about his sister given how critically dangerous this substance is, and I have even less reason to know why this is such a desperate secret. This is categorically not a mystery, this is a character behaving in ways that make literally no sense and the text doing the 'I know something you don't know and I'm not going to tell you' dance. It was baffling the first time it came up and it's getting to be completely unforgiveable now.


This is really awkwardly written; it reads like a summary more than anything else, all throughout.


as of 'all of this exposition doesn't mean anything to me' 'well I'm going to exposit at you anyway', I'm tapping out.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Okay, have lost track of chapter numbers now.

  • I’m trying to get into Ell’s situation here and his motivation, but I just can’t find anything important, urgent and emotional in his POV to get attached to, to care about. I don’t really know why he does anything.

  • “now he had three doctors surrounding his bed and prodding his skull to keep him alive” – this sounds terrible, but I just don’t feel it. “full crisis response” – as I said, not feeling the crisis, not feeling the stakes.

  • I could be staying because I'm worried about Sofia” – as I said in the last submission, I still don’t understand what they’re doing here. I feel I need a much earlier and clearer explanation for what the twins are doing, and what ‘s at stake.

  • “It looks cautious enough” – grammar.

  • “The musket enlarged” – cool. I do like Loth’s magic, which is another reason I’m more engaged with his POV. Increasingly, he begins to look like the, or a, villain.

  • “Silence arrived for a good while” – I’ll mention it here, but it’s pretty much throughout, I find some of the word choice strange, to the point that the grammar kind of falls down. I won’t do LBLs for reasons of time and it’s an early draft(?).

  • I’m slightly thrown by the blocking when sentries seem to be on Loth straight away from emerging, and yet he was further back from the walls – just a blocking issue.

I enjoyed the action in this chapter. I enjoyed Sill’s magical transformation and how Loth perceived it, giving rise to memories of his former activities. That was effective for me. Still much more interested in Loth’s POV. I see from other comments as I move through that this seems to be a common comment!


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