Author Topic: April 11th - akoebel - The Fifth Compendium, Chapter 3  (Read 1586 times)

akoebel

  • Level 5
  • *
  • Posts: 123
  • Fell Points: 0
    • View Profile
April 11th - akoebel - The Fifth Compendium, Chapter 3
« on: April 11, 2011, 11:01:17 AM »

This is the third chapter from my first novel, The Fifth Compendium.

Last time on "The Fifth Compendium" : Destra, throws herself into the river
to prevent Lorn and his men from taking away the book she's carrying. Lorn feels
responsible for Destra's death.

Chapter 3 : Inventory day at the library with strange findings.

As always, comments will be greatly appreciated.

hubay

  • Level 7
  • ****
  • Posts: 203
  • Fell Points: 0
    • View Profile
Re: April 11th - akoebel - The Fifth Compendium, Chapter 3
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2011, 12:37:13 AM »
Most of this chapter is well-written and enjoyable. There spot where she says "One day ... one day" bothers me a bit. It sounds like she's repressing a lot of hate, in a way popular fiction tells us will result in her snapping and becoming a psychopath. I don't know if this is foreshadowing or if you just worded it a little harsher than you meant to, but it seemed a little out of character.

I didn't really get her reaction to Omnk. She's seems too startled, considering her conversation with him on the carraige was calm. I feel like she should have just recognized him immediately. I also didn't understand his explanation for why he is. I get that you might want to tease that out a bit yet, but right now the way he talks is a awkward and wordy, while at the same time not really telling me a lot. I think you need to try to use less to say more.

I'm curious as to how your matriarchy maintains its power, and I'm interested to hear more about that part of your word's history. The men as described by Lorn sound like a sort of oppressed minority, but that seems a bit off since the male-female ratio tends to be even; they don't' have the advantage of numbers, so I want to know what else keeps them in charge.

akoebel

  • Level 5
  • *
  • Posts: 123
  • Fell Points: 0
    • View Profile
Re: April 11th - akoebel - The Fifth Compendium, Chapter 3
« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2011, 09:11:15 PM »
Thanks for the comments, Hubay.

For the "one day, one day", I've put it mostly as a joke on her. She dreams about doing a lot of things, but she's not ready to actually do anything to change her life. She's a little resentful towards her boss, but it's not really hate. Maybe I should remove the reference, it's maybe too early to point at Ciera's failings now.

For Onmk's explanation, you're not the first to point this, as I've been having problems with that paragraph from the start. The thing is, his explanation is just a cover up he's devising on the go (that's why I wanted the text to feel a little babbly here), but it never came out quite right. I'm seriously thinking about having him say that he doesn't know what happened to him, but first, it's not in character for him to say that he doesn't know something, and second, the cover up sets up his arc. You're probably right, and I should keep the same lines while doing it shorter.

A few words about the social order, since you won't have much more before act 2 :
For the men/women relationship. It's not actual oppression at play here, but you've seen the situation from two very biased characters (Destra comes from a very minor part of the women population, and Lorn was practically raised by his sister outside the law). The general feeling women have towards men is that they are a little like children : cute at times, and needing directions if you want them to do anything useful. As a result to that "benevolent" attitude, there is no real will in the men population to have things change, and women have demonstrated time and again that they excel at administration Ö and war. If they look to other kingdoms, men from this place feel like they're not that ill-treated there. The real question about how to treat men is actually asked by women and a large faction pushes for more men rights. This is actually a big political issue of the moment. You're in luck, one of the characters is heavily involved in politics, so if you bear with me, you'll get to see that.

See how I babble when I talk about my book?

Again, many thanks for your input.

fireflyz

  • Level 5
  • *
  • Posts: 143
  • Fell Points: 0
    • View Profile
Re: April 11th - akoebel - The Fifth Compendium, Chapter 3
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2011, 08:43:19 PM »
I dont' have too much to say on this chapter.  I really like where this is going.  I'm a sucker for histories and now that we're on the cusp (I hope) of finding out about this society, I'm definitely intrigued.  You have a knack for developing interesting characters with their own, unique quirks.  I like that.  (ex. reading puzzles)  The descriptions in this chapter were much better and I could easily picture the library in my mind.  Also, judging by this "spirit" it appears that men weren't always demonized or uneducated so that's adding dimensions here that I like.

The only errors outside of minor typos are hard to pinpoint.  In writing there are several ways to write a scene or a paragraph or a sentence.  Reading this, I could see the framework was there, but it was rough in places.  I think this is due to writing experience.  I think the more you write, the more you select the best options when it comes to sentence structure and word choice.  This isn't a critique of YOU, but rather the level that you're on.  I think it's a good place to be as this is your first book.  The basics are all here and you're walking with them.  WIth practice, that walk will turn into a run.  I guess this is my way of saying don't stop writing, you're getting there, and if not this book, soon your books will be on a higher level.
Follow my journey from aspiring author to published phenom.  Along the way we'll discover the dos and don'ts of successful writing!

http://twitter.com/ryanvanloan

Asmodemon

  • Level 6
  • *
  • Posts: 175
  • Fell Points: 0
    • View Profile
Re: April 11th - akoebel - The Fifth Compendium, Chapter 3
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2011, 12:20:24 PM »
Your writing is definitely improving. This is the best chapter yet I think, maybe part of that is because for the first time one of your characters gets a second chapter. The flow is better and you cut down on the use of Ďhadí considerably since the last chapter. There are still cases where you can do without it, but itís not much of an issue.
 
Ciera feels better as a character in this one too, more than she did in her first chapter. Her thoughts, mostly prefaced with Ďone dayí, at first read felt a bit too direct, but they do fit with what a terminally shy person would think Ė she wants to do something, but is too afraid to, so she in turn thinks it more intensely.

Iím a little surprised Ciera took so long to realize Omnk was talking to her. I knew at once the disembodied voice belonged to Omnk, and Iíve only known the two of them for a chapter. Ciera should be a lot more familiar with him. Iím also a little surprised she didnít scare more before she realized the voice was Omnk. A stranger with her in an enclosed room, the Ciera we saw last chapter wouldíve freaked out I think.

That brings us to what I liked least in this chapter, namely the last part, when Omnk goes into too long a monologue to explain he took over a foggy wisp freed from the book . It doesnít really explain anything and he goes on about it too long. From the text Iím not getting that heís lying, as you intent, but rather that he loves the sound of his own voice too much.