Author Topic: July 25, 2011 - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 7  (Read 944 times)

Will777r

  • Level 3
  • ***
  • Posts: 58
  • Fell Points: 0
    • View Profile
July 25, 2011 - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 7
« on: July 25, 2011, 07:49:00 PM »
Hey guys :)
 
Here's my next chapter. As always I appreciate the suggestions and feedback!
 
Chapter 7 Summary -  Albione returns to the temple, but two experiences make him question his faith further

 
Here's the summary's for the first 6 chapters.

Chapter 1 Summary - Albione rescues a rival militia commander, but ends up losing the knight he's sworn to protect. A night elf raid has overrun the walls

Chapter 2 Summary - Charom, Albione's older brother, is in charge of the High Priestess' guard detail when the temple comes under attack.

Chapter 3 Summary - Albione rescues the High Priestess and accompanies her and his brother Charom to the wall. What he finds is completely unexpected.
 
Chapter 4 Summary - Albione is summoned to a meeting with his immediate Superior to face the consequences of his actions on the wall.
 
Chapter 5 Summary - A messenger delivers a dangerous package to Albione's room. When he opens it, the nightmare gets worse.

Chapter 6 Summary - Albione returns to his family's estate to fulfill his vow of seclusion, but finds himself further away from his God.

Thanks again!

Will777r

hubay

  • Level 7
  • ****
  • Posts: 203
  • Fell Points: 0
    • View Profile
Re: July 25, 2011 - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 7
« Reply #1 on: July 31, 2011, 05:48:43 AM »
I'm finally getting around to critiquing... sorry, most of my week's been devoted to this 24 bike race thing; haven't had much time to read. Anyways.

I'm glad that Albione is finally nearing the end of his naivete. I think he will (or should) always be principled and a bit of an idealist, which is good, but i don't think i would have liked too many more chapters of penance. You could probably use an action scene at some point, even if it's just training in the yard – perhaps with a brother who has been criticizing him lately. I also think you've done a good job slowly introducing what's wrong with the temple.

A few things have stuck out at me:

Why are all the priests "brother?" I mean, you can use any honorific you want, of course, but Brother makes me think of monk. Priests are fathers, usually. That said, I feel like most of the brothers roles are as monks, anyways, so maybe it's just wrong to call Albione a priest to begin with.

I also feel like there isn't a female presence in your temple. Is it segregated by sex, to avoid temptation and whatnot?  otherwise you should probably include some lady leads at some point.

Exactly how large is the temple? I've had trouble getting a sense of how much of the city is governed by it. Is it walled off, like an abbey? or is it mostly just a district of the city.

How do your gods function, exactly? Do they require faith for sustenance? Do they exist on a different metaphysical plane, or do they actually 'live' in your world. So far, the only god we see is Alazon, along with the night elf god. Is he the only human god? Since he's the god of Valor, as opposed to the god of, say, everything, I feel like there would be gods of other things. You should mention them, if so. Is the temple based in eleuria? Does the milita worship other deities? That would add an extra dynamic to the conflict. Is alazon concerned with the militia/temple conflict, or is that entirely a human thing?

You don't need to answer all of these right away, of course. I expect the last one to be a bit of a plot point. But some of those – especially the existence of other deities and the temple's opinion of them – probably should be addressed by now.


Will777r

  • Level 3
  • ***
  • Posts: 58
  • Fell Points: 0
    • View Profile
Re: July 25, 2011 - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 7
« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2011, 08:24:18 PM »
Thanks a ton for your thoughts Hubay! Things are indeed coming to a head pretty soon for Albione where it concerns the temple. Chapter 10 is the end of Act 1 (if we're looking at it from the 3 Act system).

To answer some questions:

- The Temple is extremely formal, with the exception of the few that really run things there. Everyone has carved out their own little kingdom and much of it centers on titles and position. To not use the title is kind of an insult. These formalities keep the temple out of touch with reality and from really making any good impact in their community. Something Albione is starting to notice.

- Priests aren't allowed to marry, so there is segregation for the lower ranking ones (like Albione). High ranking priests/priestesses are allowed to take lovers since they've "learned" to control their passions with "principle".

- The Temple structure is ginormous. It's the largest structure in a city of 30,000 inhabitants. The nobility have their estates in 1/3 of the city, the eastern section. The southern and western sections are controlled by the militia and inhabited by the wealthier businessmen who do not have noble blood. The temple houses over a thousand people and can accommodate about 5,000 worshippers in its main sanctuary. It's 3 stories high all around, with a smaller structure that stretches another 4 stories and houses the leadership. It has it's own walls, as do most of the nobles estates in addition to the wall that runs around the entire city. At its back is the ocean.

- The pantheon of Adme is also quite large. Ferris and most of the militia worship Mirash, God of Order. In the next chapter, you'll meet a friend of Albione's. His father worships, Jetra, Goddess of Life and Healing. Some are more racially divided. A race called the Neld worship Hasaq, God of the Seas. Wizards worship deity's of the elements. A lot of these are mentioned in later chapters as Albione's world expands. While these God's don't derive their power form their worshippers, their status in the pantheon is dependant upon how many worshippers they have. Their place of existence will be revealed later on in the story. I could tell you, but I'd prefer to get your impression on a first read. I originally had a prologue where all the pantheon had been summoned for a meeting. I may bring it back, but I've been told publishing houses hate prologues from new authors. So for now, it's scrapped.

Thanks again Hubay!

Will777r

hubay

  • Level 7
  • ****
  • Posts: 203
  • Fell Points: 0
    • View Profile
Re: July 25, 2011 - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 7
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2011, 12:59:19 AM »
Ok, that all makes sense. You should still probably mention the other gods sooner, if only very vaguely, just because they're so important to your story. Have a brother propogandize about how Valor is 'greatest among the gods,' or talk about the how the milita worship the false god Mirash, or something like that. I think it would add a depth to the conflict and make the introduction of other gods smoother.

Asmodemon

  • Level 6
  • *
  • Posts: 175
  • Fell Points: 0
    • View Profile
Re: July 25, 2011 - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 7
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2011, 03:55:09 PM »
Finally Albione is starting to see some of the idiocy of his doctrine. The priests’ view of valour and courage is still hard for me to swallow, even after your explanation in the comments of chapter four, someone who’s not of the faith, not a priest of , is always a coward. The priesthood actively looks down on other people and especially other organisations following different gods/ideals. How is it possible the rest of the city doesn’t feel slighted if that’s how they are thought of? The priests certainly don’t make a secret of their contempt. How can anyone adhere to a priesthood that despises everyone else of the populace?

In the comments above you mention more of the pantheon, I’d like to see more mention of that in the story. It seems like their existence is a key point in the plot and it also explains much of the enmity between the temple and the militia, God of Valour versus the God of Order. Albione’s order has a large temple, largest of the city. How are the other temples in the city or are there even other temples – the story so far didn’t give me the impression there are other worships sanctioned in the city.

Aside from addressing Albione’s doubts and showing examples of what he thinks is wrong with his order  this chapter feels like a transition chapter again. For the most part I don’t have much to say other than I hope Albione is close to reaching a resolution and stop being so damn passive. After his first and rather futile ‘warning’ to the temple complex during the attack he’s spent most of his time reacting to what others want him to do, rather than take his own actions. There have been cryptic hints about Albione’s importance to the temple but I’ve seen nothing in Albione that warrants such notions.

I don’t know if publishing houses hate prologues and if the story needs a prologue than it should be there, but it seems to me (insert assumption) you’re info-dumping in the prologue to get across the setting information about the pantheon. You can make subtler mentions of different religions, for instance when Albione rushes to the temple complex you can have him run, and take note of, a temple to the god of order and have him think on the militia man he saved, a follower of that god.

cjhuitt

  • Level 3
  • ***
  • Posts: 44
  • Fell Points: 0
    • View Profile
Re: July 25, 2011 - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 7
« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2011, 03:53:03 AM »
I generally agree with the other comments so far in that it seems like the Albione discovers problems with the temple chapters are starting to stretch a bit.  Perhaps a few of the less important parts could be removed.  On the other hand, some wordsmithing to tighten them up would probably do wonders as well.

I also agree about mentioning other gods earlier, somehow.  At least a passing mention to a couple of them (besides the dark elf god) would do a lot to remind the reader that Alazon is only one of a group, in this world and religion.

For the first part of this chapter, I was wanting a stronger negative reaction to Eld from Albione, possibly along with passing guilt for feeling that way about a fellow priest.  Also, Albione thinking "now for the snide remark" didn't work well for me.  Realistically, most people would probably think that.  However, I'd like for Albione to be just slightly better than that, which means thinking something else.  Perhaps even being disappointed by the remark.

As for the snide remark itself, I didn't see the humor in it when I read it.  Is "offered your services" supposed to be a euphemism (which I doubt)?  It doesn't seem very snide to me either, merely petty.  The good news is that you've got plenty of time to improve the remark, if you feel it needs it.  You don't need to come up with the banter in only the time it would take to converse naturally.

When Nade says "It'd be the first time", the "it'd" threw me.  I read that as a contraction of "it would", which is usually used to refer to something in the future, while the battle where it happened is in the past.

Also, "anyone with a bit of sense knew it wasn't that simple": I would change the "knew" to "should know", since apparently nobody around him knows that.  Of course, the way it's written says a lot about how much sense those around him have.

In the rest of that section, I thought there was a lot of dialog and description intermixed.  A lot of the description is believable and realistic, but not necessarily illuminating of the character and can usually be imagined by a shorter description, in my opinion.

For the next scene, recording the sessions, I wondered right at the beginning why they are even recording what is said.  It is one thing to record the gifts, judgements, awards, actions, etc. that result from the sessions, but why use paper on recording the sessions themselves.  I guess I'm assuming this is similar to our medieval times where paper/parchment/vellum was moderately scarce, so maybe it's just fine.  It is something that made me stop reading and consider, however.

The paragraph with the nobleman wanting a property ruling caused a bunch of comments from me.  First of all, it seems like the temple is selling their services for "donations".  It's made pretty clear later as well.  Of course, as readers we're supposed to see it like that while Albione isn't able to (yet).  I just wanted to say I thought this was one of the best and most straightforward indications (in the parts I've read) that the temple has problems that go beyond a bad superior or two and a grudge against a rival organization.

Second, the nobleman wanted a positive ruling from the temple in a property dispute.  This made me wonder if the temple had jurisdiction in the dispute, bearing in mind all of the side effects and repercussions if they do.  Perhaps they only have jurisdiction in their part of the city?  But if so, why would a nobleman seek them out?

If the temple does have jurisdiction, the paragraph makes it pretty blatant to me at least that the temple is selling it's judgements for donations, and that seems even worse to me than just selling the services.  After all, there's a justification (however bad we and Albione think it is) for requiring a donation for the services.

I liked the part with the woman and Albione wanting to help heal the child, or do something.  It could probably use polish, but it's a good scene.  The biggest problem I have with it is that I think it loses some effectiveness with the parts added to the beginning and end (him going through the other sessions).

Also, Albione has estates of some sort.  How likely is it he'd be able to donate the gold coin for the healing of the child?  And how would Brother Pate twist that into another lesson of how Albione does things wrong?  Something like that would also get reader me more firmly on Albione's side.

Finally, the end of the chapter.  More of Albione wrestling with the problem.  Again, I think it's a little too drawn out to be as strong as you'd like it.  However, perhaps you're saving some of that for the end to the coming chapters, since they'll be finishing Act 1.

I see I have another piled up in my inbox.  I'm looking forward to the next part.
Caleb