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Topics - Reaves

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Video Games / Alan Wake
« on: July 07, 2009, 10:25:22 PM »
Thought I would mention this game here as it contains many elements that I think most people who visit these forums would enjoy :)

Basically, its about a horror novelist who goes on vacation...and then his novel comes to life around him. It seems to be very story-centric, delivered in an almost-episodic or -chapter format, meaning that each 'level' is a tightly-woven, cohesive whole.

I don't really know a bunch about it, but I'm interested.

Writing Group / Inspiration
« on: June 29, 2009, 10:37:45 AM »
So, when and where do your best ideas come from? For me its not a particular place, but a particular time: in that relaxed state right when I'm about to fall asleep. I don't even think I am consciously thinking about the story but something just pops into my head and I have to get up and scribble something down or else I'll forget. I've since learned that if I don't write it down I'll simply forget in the morning, KNOWING that I thought of something really cool but not knowing what it was  :P

How about you?

Movies and TV / Supernatural
« on: May 11, 2009, 03:17:22 AM »
I've been watching this show on and off for a couple years now, catching the odd episode when I can. A couple weeks ago, I decided to sit down and work my way through the first couple seasons.

I can officially say it; this show is AWESOME! It mixes superb acting with dark horror/action and some truly hilarious moments in a television vintage for the ages. Here's a description of the show stolen from, but it doesn't do it justice.
Twenty-three years ago, Sam Winchester (Jared Padalecki) and Dean Winchester (Jensen Ackles) lost their mother to a mysterious and demonic supernatural force. Subsequently, their father John (Jeffrey Dean Morgan, "Grey's Anatomy") raised them to be soldiers. He taught them about the paranormal evil that lives in the dark corners and on the back roads of America...and he taught them how to kill it.

For most of season one, I was just enjoying the cool action scenes and great special effects and wondering about hints at a plot twist, but I was completely blown away by the season finale. Somehow while I wasn't looking they sneaked a theme in there. The show had stopped being good and became great.

I should warn you, it can get a bit raunchy at times. Also, keep in mind it is firmly in the horror genre. However, and this is coming from someone who doesn't watch horror movies, the pure SCARY aspect of it was well within my threshold.

Now go watch it already!

Reading Excuses / 4-27-09 Reaves Crystalheart Chapter Twenty-three
« on: April 27, 2009, 02:18:14 AM »
Thanks for your input!

Reading Excuses / Reaves 4-12-09: Questions for You.
« on: April 13, 2009, 01:49:49 AM »
First of all I want to promise everyone who posts here that I will not argue with anything you say or try to defend my work. Hopefully you already see that as the case when you post regarding what I've written. I've tried to do my best to make that the standard with my posts, but I know that to some degree I've failed in that respect.

   You can answer almost all of these questions without having read more than a couple chapters of my work, so don't feel put off because you haven't gotten very far.

   Also, don't let the number of questions deter you! These are simply starting points to jog your brain. Please don't feel like you need to answer every single question. Feel free to only choose the ones you think sound the most fun to answer or you think I most need to hear. You can give as much or as little detail as you like. In addition, feel free to answer this bit by bit. Make edits to your original post!

   If there is anything you would like to bring to my attention about Crystalheart or writing in general that is not addressed in the questions below, please chime in.

   1. How have you seen the following themes and motifs present in the work presented so far? What do you think of them? Are there any themes or motifs that you have seen in the work that are not present in the list below?

-Who am I?

-Red and Blue

   2. How do you think I have failed or succeeded in avoiding or using clichés? Give examples if you like.

   3. What do you think are consistent flaws present throughout the work, such as: weak style, faulty pacing, poor characterization, nonexistent voice, etc?

   4. What do you think is the number one thing I need to work on as a writer?

   5. What is the number one piece of advice you have found most useful for yourself personally as a writer?

6. What do you think of the following characters: Aermyst, Ilis, Marlin, Tristan, Zael, and Dantes. Choose from any or all of the following questions.
      NOTE: Although Ilis and most likely Tristan are going to be drastically reworked, I'd still like to see what you think of them.

-Rate them from 1 to 10, with 1 meaning you don't feel any sympathy for the character and couldn't care less for their plot arc, and 10 meaning that this character is brilliantly realized and heartbreakingly sympathetic. Please explain why you chose that number.
-Do you think this character is round or flat? Static or dynamic? (provide defs)
-Do a character analysis. This follows the formula: (Character name) wants ____, is willing to do ____, and ____ stands in his or her way.

   7. Choose from among the following questions about the plot, setting, world, and characters.
      a. How well do you know the plot, setting, world, and characters? Do you feel lost and confused or do you feel like you have a firm grasp of what is happening and why?
      b. How well do you sympathize/care about the plot, setting, world, and characters? Does the world and setting inspire only a passing interest, or none at all? Are you emotionally invested in the plot and characters?
      c. Do you feel you can predict certain events in the future of the book's storyline, in general terms? If so, what? If not, is it because the story hasn't flowed in a predictable fashion, or because the plot simply doesn't interest you enough to attempt to predict where it will go, or for some other reason?

   8. What do you think of the following predictions made by Hamster concerning where the story is going?

a. Marlin's intense studying will bring him the answer to how to get Aermyst's soul back, as well as stuff about the relics and the ancient civilization.
b. Aermyst will ignore what Marlin tries to tell him, will do his own thing and fail.
c. Tristan is actually the Tian guy who got his soul stolen 200 years ago, and isn't actually dead.
d.The super powerful guy who took Aermyst's and Dantes' souls is also the guy who had taken Tian's soul then.
e. Some huge catastrophe is going to happen or some army is going to invade or something(this also has to do with the relics and the ancient civilization), and that is way Zael(is that his name?it's something with a 'Z') told Aermyst that they are saving the world.

   9. Are there any observations about my writing style or the structure of the story or the way the chapters flow that you would like to bring to my attention? Examples might include how I use passive voice too much, or how all my chapters seems to follow the same formula, or something similar.

   10. Is there anything you have read recently that feels similar in any way to what you have seen in Crystalheart so far?

   11. Is there a character that you especially like reading about? This does not have to be a main character, but simply somebody you think is interesting. Ex, Mourne, Deragon, Ulidar, etc.

Webcomics & Free Stuff / The Far Reaches Webcomic
« on: April 09, 2009, 10:28:00 AM »
I don't normally get into webcomics (Schlock was my first) but this one is pretty interesting. Its very similar to Schlock in setting, and while its not as consistently released or as consistently funny as Schlock (at least in the beginning, I haven't gotten very far) it is always beautiful. The art at the beginning of the strip is better than the art that Howard is releasing now. It has obvious inspirations from anime and I really like it!

Rants and Stuff / April Fools!! Tell your stories here.
« on: April 01, 2009, 08:44:32 PM »
We had some good ones at school today. First of all, both guys' and girls' bathrooms were COMPLETELY filled with desks. I mean, even the stalls. It took...quite a while to get them all out.

Then about ten of us dragged two soccer goals from the field outside and put them in a cage around the middle school principal's car. ROFL!! Immortalized forever on facebook, I might add.

Then at the end of the day two friend's vehicles were completely covered in toilet paper.

Not to mention the minor pranks which were going on throughout the day.
edit: grammar

Reading Excuses / 3-30-09 Reaves: Crystalheart, chapters 15 and 16
« on: March 30, 2009, 01:16:18 AM »
   My thoughts: A long submission this time! I am very pleased with Zael's chapter. I think I captured his voice very clearly. He is incredibly interesting to me. Hopefully he has the same effect on my readers.
   I am not quite so pleased with Marlin's chapter. This is an incredibly important part of his character, but I'm not sure I have foreshadowed it correctly. I'm also not sure if his "phobia" if you will, will make sense to all of my readers. After all, he doesn't have any problems learning to fight, but once he sees a sword he goes crazy? I'm just not sure I've explained it correctly.
   Also, I'm a tiny bit worried about Tristan's part. It feels a little bit cliche towards the end, with the images pouring through his head and then he goes unconscious. Is that something I need to be worried about or not?
   Once again, thanks to you all for consistently giving me great advice!

Table-Top Games / Painting and Modeling- share your pics!
« on: March 27, 2009, 08:54:09 PM »
I thought it would be cool for those modelers among us to share a few pics of their creations as well as perhaps works in progress. I'd love to see what you all can come up with!

Here I've got two dragons and two babies. I'm sorry, the picture is a little blurry :( Trust me, the others are even worse :P
The white dragon on the right is from the Games Workshop line. I'm not sure what the other three are from. I didn't do any conversions on any of the models here.

I've got some more but the rest are even blurrier :( I'll try to take some more.

EDIT: urgh. The picture isn't coming up. Any suggestions? The picture is hosted on snapfish here. ]

Reading Excuses / 3-23-09 Reaves Crystalheart Chapter 13
« on: March 23, 2009, 02:54:46 PM »
Here it is! I'm a bit strapped for time right now, I'll try to edit this post later for specific questions I have about this.

EDIT: Alright. It looks like wcarter already mentioned the major things I needed input on with this chapter. Did Aermyst's bridge scene feel motivated? Note, I am considering taking that scene out. It doesn't move Aermyst's plot forward at all. At the end of the scene, he is pretty much at the same place where he started.

Also, how was the dialogue with Marlin and Co.? I've been trying to focus on improving my dialogue, giving it a whole lot more life. Was there any place where it fell flat?

Thanks a bunch for reading, everyone!

Writing Group / Modern Language in Fantasy?
« on: March 18, 2009, 08:29:40 PM »
Not sure how much more of an explanation I can put here beyond the title, lol. What do you guys think of the use of modern language and expressions from our culture in fantasy? Does it belong? Where have you seen it done well and poorly?

Reading Excuses / Writing Groups: An Essay by Dan Wells
« on: March 14, 2009, 07:21:52 PM »
Here is an essay I stumbled across on, Dan Wells' aka Fellfrosch's blog. Its quite interesting and since we are in a writing group I figured it would be applicable :P

Movies and TV / Castle
« on: March 12, 2009, 07:30:35 PM »
Nathan Fillion. Playing an author? Yes.

Anybody seen this? It premiered on Monday. I thought it was interesting and funny, and I'm kind've curious to see where its going. I hope it doesn't turn out to be another "cop show with a twist" ; they're popping up all over the place these days.

Reading Excuses / 3-9-09 Reaves: Crystalheart, Chapter Twelve
« on: March 09, 2009, 12:53:11 PM »
Another week, another round of submissions. As always thanks for all your comments!

NOTE: I mention Artificing somewhere in this chapter. I've made a few changes to my world; they are basically guys who study the relics.

Reading Excuses / 3-2-09 Reaves: Crystalheart, Chapter Eleven
« on: March 02, 2009, 02:59:03 AM »
Yay! You are back for chapter eleven!!

A couple things to say. First, some of you may remember that once I mentioned that chapter eleven was Awesome. Yes, with a capital. Well, first of all your memory is scary. Seriously, stop it.
Second, that chapter, the Awesome one, is actually chapter twelve. I added in an extra chapter at the last minute (chapter 10) so obviously everyone had to move up one chapter.

Really, not a lot happens in this chapter. Lots of interesting things, I hope; the little conversation with Aermyst and Marlin, Aermyst finding out about Hallastan, the "elevator" :) But there is not a whole lot in the way of events. Originally I intended to continue a little further with this chapter, scavenging from the events in chapter twelve, but I decided not to. We will have to see.

Question. When I was describing the city of Londalis in first person, from the bird's-eye view perspective...did that work at all? Its something I am thinking of doing for all of the major locales my characters visit. Good idea/ Bad idea?

Anyway, thanks for plunging through my chapters, guys. I really appreciate it a lot.

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