Author Topic: June 6- SkyhunterCommander-Untitled Sci-fi Epic Chapter 4  (Read 2510 times)

SkyhunterCommander

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June 6- SkyhunterCommander-Untitled Sci-fi Epic Chapter 4
« on: June 06, 2011, 03:08:53 PM »
As I mentioned in the email, I'm glad to finally be back to a point where I should be able to submit(and give feedback) regularly-chapter 5 is already ready for next week, and hopefully I will keep the pace up.

I'll repost here the note I put in the air about the description of the Felinaris:

One brief note: As was noted in comments on chapter 2 (and by my other readers) I didn’t do quite as good a job as I could have in describing the Felinaris as a species. As such, and since the reader would know how they look by this point, I am including a brief physical description of the species. (Which should also help those who have not read chapter 2).

Brief description of the Felinaris as a species: They are essentially humanoid cats, especially their heads, which are almost identical to that of a cat in shape, and they have a tail. Their hands are five-fingered and clawed. They are digitigrades (as are cats), and their leg shape is closer to that of the hind legs of cats than a human’s.


About this chapter on it's own; it's meant to be a fun, lighthearted chapter, both to advance the characters and to provide a break between  the necessarily dry, early Darkclaw chapters.

Any and all feedback is welcome!
I will get around to giving feedback to my fellow Reading Excuses members. As soon as I can.

Will777r

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Re: June 6- SkyhunterCommander-Untitled Sci-fi Epic Chapter 4
« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2011, 04:10:43 AM »
Finally got around to this - sorry it took so long.

I'm not an avid sci-fi reader, so I'm not familiar with all the genre norms. But I can give my opinion on how the story feels to me.

I thought you did a good job of bringing out their cat-like nature. Their behavior struck me as a little too aggressive for human behavior. Even the playful banter (or romantic banter) had an aggressive tone to it that defined them as a different species. So, I tihnk you achieved that well.

The tension of the chapter seems focused on Nayasar's internal issues. Most of the scene moves via dialogue, but underlying it all is the pressure and anger she feels. It was there, but I think you can strengthen that a bit more. Make me feel the anger and pressure (and even emotional pain if that's the source of it) more to up the ante of the chapter. It's not filler, but at times it dragged a bit as the tension felt low.

The race part was the best - I kind of lost track of the writing and sunk into the story. Before that it dragged a bit for me. During their drive over to the forest/hill might be a good time to up the internal tension a bit for her. Just my opinion there though.

I was worried the end of the chapter wouldn't have a strong hook to move on to the next one, but I think it worked. She sleepily makes Felivas promise to help her make them pay and he agrees. So, there's a promise of something to come and I'll want to find out if it happens. The only suggestion I'd make there is maybe to make his response stronger maybe? "Of course I will" kinda seemed like he was saying whatever she wanted to hear instead of really supporting her. But maybe that's just Felivas' personality :)

I'm interested to read more. I thought the chapter flowed well. There were some missing words and a few long sentences that could probably be split up, but not so many that it distracted me too much.

Will777r

SkyhunterCommander

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Re: June 6- SkyhunterCommander-Untitled Sci-fi Epic Chapter 4
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2011, 09:09:11 PM »
Thanks for the feedback. I'm glad they're coming across as not human. One of my main concerns with this story is to make the main characters relatable, but still clearly alien. With my other main character, Darkclaw, it's not too hard right now because he is emotionless, but I'm glad I'm doing something right with Nayasar and Felivas.

I'm playing around with exactly what to do with the driving part. I think I was trying to avoid using a scene break to skip the whole drive, but I didn't know exactly what to do during the drive. I may try and shorten it, maybe with a scene break for part of it, to give what's left opportunity to up the tension a bit without dragging on for too long.
I will get around to giving feedback to my fellow Reading Excuses members. As soon as I can.

akoebel

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Re: June 6- SkyhunterCommander-Untitled Sci-fi Epic Chapter 4
« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2011, 04:34:05 PM »
Sorry for the very, very late comments.

This chapter reads really well. It has some fun moments and is enjoyable as such.

My main comment here will be more about the contents. What has happened or what have we learned from the characters from this chapter?
* Nayasar is a really focused character with a stubborn streak => we knew that already from the earlier chapters
* Nayasar is trying to build a strategy and hasn't got anywhere => that's new
* Felivas is concerned about her and loves her => we also knew that already

As much as I enjoyed the chapter, I'm forced to conclude that not much happened in it, so you might want to remove it or merge it with an earlier part. I understand that you need to contrast with the Darkclaw's chapters, but if nothing happens to your characters, you might lose readers there.

A few other comments:
* An Admiral is not supposed to be on duty or off duty, I believe, so Felivas's argument is kind of moot.
* The banter between the two was very well played. None appears to be subdued by the other, so you're playing against the usual clichés (one being a superior, the other one being male), which is good.
* "Everything she thought of had a flaw" : for some reason, that sentence confused me, and I had to re-read it.

SkyhunterCommander

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Re: June 6- SkyhunterCommander-Untitled Sci-fi Epic Chapter 4
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2011, 08:12:51 PM »
Thanks for the feedback, I'm glad that everyone seems to like the banter between Nayasar and Felivas.

As far as the issue about learning something new, that's really not something I've thought about much. As you mentioned, the primary purpose of the chapter is to provide a break between the early Darkclaw chapters (as of the first Darkclaw chapter after chapter 5, I don't anticipate needing to do that any more, and will probably swift viewpoints when it suits the plot as opposed to alternating every chapter).

As I was writing it I was aiming to mostly just build on their characters and situation, as introduced in chapter 2, as well as have a somewhat lighthearted series of events before everything gets more serious. I see what you mean about it not really having much that is new, but at least as of now I don't see it as a problem (though that opinion can change somewhere down the line). Bear in mind that this is very early in the story, and as such I would hope that the reader would find them (as well as the other events) interesting enough to continue to read through despite nothing 'new' in this chapter.

That being said, I could perhaps start the scene earlier (as opposed to when Felivas walks in), and spend a little time delving into Nayasar's head a bit, to show how she is not only focused, but obsessed at this point. (The fact that she's obsessed with this and haunted by what happened is something that was going to come up, but I just didn't think of introducing it here. Do you think that sort of new information might resolve this issue?
I will get around to giving feedback to my fellow Reading Excuses members. As soon as I can.

akoebel

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Re: June 6- SkyhunterCommander-Untitled Sci-fi Epic Chapter 4
« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2011, 09:19:32 AM »
I would very much like to have more information about that event she's so angry about.

Adding that bit of backstory might do the trick, but to be effective, you would have to also insert some reminders of her troubles later (more at first, then less as she begins to forget about them).

The immediate effect would be to have a heavier chapter when you wanted a light one, so be careful in the amount of backstory you want to add.

Asmodemon

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Re: June 6- SkyhunterCommander-Untitled Sci-fi Epic Chapter 4
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2011, 09:57:46 PM »
We’re not getting much in terms of new things in this chapter, but after the last Darkclaw chapter it’s refreshing to get back to the cats. Nayasar wears her emotions openly and that really helps to connect to her character. I liked seeing more of Felivas’s feelings shine through – their courtships seems feral and catlike, so that works really well for me.

On the other hand I’m also reminded constantly that these two are the Grand Admiral and an Admiral. Sure this chapter is meant to be light-hearted, once they leave her room they’re just crazy kids in love, and while I liked it I really want to see them in a different context. I keep failing to see the officer aspects of their characters. I really want to see them doing their jobs, interacting with other soldiers, to counterpoint their professional lives with their private lives.

Something different, these are cat or catlike characters, with senses different than human. So far you’re sticking with sight. It might be nice to also include some other senses, such as smell, into what the characters notice about their surroundings and each other.