Writing and Poetry

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Writing and Poetry

Post  Argent Fang on Tue Sep 07, 2010 8:57 pm

Much in the vein of the original thread on the Constellation Chamber, post any sort of poetry or writing you want to share. I'll get the ball rolling with a little Fantasy piece I like to call:

"Redemption's Rite"


Today was another beautiful day; the sun was shining brightly into the window overlooking the grand ocean. He opened the window and let in the sickly sweet smell of brine mixed with fish then let the sun wash over his face, temporarily blinding himself, a ritual which Zubzar performed everyday during his time in the chapel of Midus, God of Light. He was honored to be given such a privilege; especially considering the sort of reputation that orcs had.

He was a young man of about seventeen, and already he was well over a head taller than the tallest of his peers. His skin was a light olive green, his head was shaved completely bald, and his vapid onyx eyes looked more like pits of darkness. He wasn’t the smartest person in the world; in fact, many of his peers even suggested that he was probably the stupidest thing to walk upright they had ever seen. But none of them were in the service of Midus, now were they?

He smiled in the knowledge that of all the prospective orphans in Calinport, he was picked to be one of the knights of Midus! Because although he wasn’t very smart, or the wisest orc in the land, he had personality, strength, and unfaltering faith in his God. After about fifteen minutes of praying while staring at the sun, Zubzar made to get ready for his day. He threw on his trainee uniform: it consisted of a shirt, breeches, boots, and a tabard. Everything was bleached white with red trim, the exception being the stylized crimson sun emblazoned in the center of the tabard.

He then lifted his mighty greataxe, his most prized possession, from the wall. It weighed a good twenty-five pounds and was made of the finest steel. Many priests thought the weapon was much too barbaric for their tastes, and voiced their complaints; and the other knights preferred to use warhammers or swords. A warhammer Zubzar could understand; it could be equally as powerful and destructive as an axe. But a sword? That was the kind of weapon that a prissy duelist used, and the warriors of Midus were no prissy duelists.

The sun burned away the idle thoughts as he went downstairs for his early morning exercises. They consisted of him using his greataxe to cut wood for the many fires that were kept alight throughout the day. He went out the door and made his way down another set of stairs, nearly running over a spindly priest ascending along the way. “Watch where you’re going, you stupid beast of burden,” he cursed at him. The priest's curses fell on deaf ears as Zubzar exited the building and headed for the woodyard.

The quartermaster was there to greet him, much like he was every morning when he gave out the daily chores for the trainees. “Alright, Zubzar,” he said. “Ready for another day of hard work?”

Zubzar nodded mindlessly. “You betcha!” he eagerly said.

“Good, because there’s a lot of wood to be cut before breakfast today; you think you can handle it on your own?” the quartermaster asked.

Zubzar puffed himself up and said, “By Midus, do I perform this task!”

“Sure, sure,” he replied, waving his hand to dismiss him.

When he got out to the woodpile, he realized the quartermaster hadn’t been exaggerating when he said there was a lot to be done. There was a pyramid-shaped stack of thick logs about eight feet high; with no assistance, this would take all morning. It didn’t matter though, because he would deal with this obstacle the only way Zubzar knew how: with brute force.

He grabbed a log from the top and set it on the chopping block. He then hoisted his mighty axe, which was nearly as tall as he was, and cleanly split the log in half. After about a half an hour of steady, sweaty work, Zubzar got the brilliant idea of putting a few pieces of wood on the block at the same time, thereby tripling his productivity.

By late morning it had all been cut, and by Midus, did he have an appetite! He was treated to a hearty breakfast of porridge, fruit, and a giant slab of honeyed ham: truly the breakfast of a champion! He gobbled it down greedily after giving thanks to Midus for the spread. Once that was done, Zubzar prepared for his favorite part of the day: the training exercises; the location where he could show off his combat prowess and his Midus-given might.

The sun was at its apex when he reached the courtyard, walking very proudly and wearing a broad smile. He put on his padded armor and sadly exchanged his real greataxe for a wooden practice weapon. He would have preferred to spar with actual steel just to prove he really was strong enough to serve their God, but the priests kept scolding him for such nasty thoughts as they tried to say that Midus was a God of compassion; that all creatures of good should be showered with love. He wanted to believe them, but something primal within him told him that only the strong deserved to live.

His first opponent was a stout man around five-feet-three, with heavily corded muscles in his arms and hands from long days of practice with the warhammer he preferred. He had height to his advantage, not to mention a superior reach, but you had to be careful with short and strong opponents. If you let your guard down for a moment with them, they would slip past your guard and do some serious damage. He had more than his fair share of bumps and bruises to prove it.

“Hope you’re ready to lose, freak,” the cadet spat as he charged straight at Zubzar, hammer held high above his head. Zubzar shifted forward and let the flat of the axe blade take the brunt of the impact from the wooden mallet. Although the weapons were for practice, it was still quite possible to kill someone with an errant blow.

Zubzar repelled the attack and then swung a wide arch, nearly catching the guy upside the head. The cadet moved in close to take advantage of the swing, but that was what he wanted him to do. He went with the momentum he created from the swing and angled the axe downward. The cadet couldn’t cut his charge short as he took a blow to the knees, sending him sprawling to the ground.

“That was a dirty trick, orc!” cursed the cadet. A small trickle of blood ran from the right side of his mouth where he fell. “Now I’m really going to make you suffer!”

He charged again. Zubzar answered with a primal roar and an axe swing that flattened the foolish human once more. When he fell to the ground, his limbs twitched momentarily before laying too still for comfort. Zubzar had a sinking feeling in the pit of his stomach.

The instructor rushed over post haste to make sure the cadet was alright. Zubzar knew it was a waste of time; his recklessness had killed this man. Sure, he probably had had it coming, but this was no way to die.

“What got into you, Zubzar?!” the instructor bellowed, his hand hovering over his longsword. Zubzar stared at nothing. He had never taken a life before. That part didn’t bother him; all warriors dealt in death after all. It was the fact that this was a wasteful death, that this man possessed so much hatred for him just because he looked different from everyone else that he would go out of his way to try and kill him.

They wouldn’t see it that way, of course. They never did. All they would see is a monster pretending to be civilized going out of control on an innocent person. Zubzar could never escape that stigma no matter how acquiescent he was, both to chores and to scripture. Maybe his extreme piety stemmed from that desire to escape the lousy hand of cards he had been dealt just because he happened to be born an orc. But he didn’t possess enough eloquence or presence of mind to make such things vocal.

“I should kill you right now! That was one of my best students. Do you ever think things through before you do them?!” he bellowed. “You’re powerful and you have a natural ability for battle, there’s no getting around that.” An actual compliment amidst the tirade? That was a new one. “But your total disregard for the safety of the people you’re going to be working with in the future makes you more of a liability than an asset, don’t you see that?”

“He should have known better than to piss me off,” Zubzar said with a growl.

The instructor slapped himself on the forehead mockingly. “Of course, because him upsetting you gives you every right to murder him!” he shouted.

“It was an accident!” Zubzar retorted. He knew it was a feeble excuse, but for the love of Midus, it was the truth.

“Yeah, I bet it was,” added one of the students.

“You keep out of this!” the instructor scolded. “I just don’t know what I’m going to do with you, son. Maybe you need to spend some time in confession to set you straight.” Confession referred to a ritualistic act of priests trying to cleanse evils from the bodies and souls of villains through fire; more often than not by the means of sun-shaped branding irons.

“I’ll do whatever is required of me,” Zubzar acquiesced.

The instructor nodded in approval. “Very well then, you shall seek confession. May merciful Midus cleanse your soul.”

He was led away by a couple of priests and brought into a ritual chamber the likes of which he had never been in before. It was a circular stone chamber that had a red sun on the floor; the eight points all pointing to doors that were lined up perfectly. In the center, there was an altar set up on a raised part of the floor with a depression counteracting it. He was placed in the depression.

He was stripped to the waist and was forced to his knees before the altar, a giant slab of bloodstone with sacred runes traced in gold all along its surface. A silk roll was brought out and placed upon the altar and as it did, Zubzar could make out the sound of metal clanging against stone. The confessor wore bright red robes trimmed with gold and white; his head completely bald as was customary of all clergy of Midus. He held in his outstretched hand a red branding iron with an eight-pointed sun on the end.

He started to hum some words in a language that Zubzar didn’t understand and the branding iron came to life in his hand, the end a fiery orange hue. He then came around and looked down upon Zubzar with a mixture of pity and revulsion, the branding iron tracing a pattern in the air as he moved.

The confessor began to speak. “You have been found filthy and corrupt, trainee Zubzar,” he said with a sneer. “We had hoped that you living amongst more civilized people and learning the teachings of Midus would put you on the good path.” He shook his head solemnly. “Now it seems that we must purge the orcish taint from your soul. You have come willingly, which is a good thing, for few willingly come to face themselves.”

“I just want to be the best person I can be,” proclaimed Zubzar.

The confessor smiled warmly. “Then let the confession begin.”

The iron was placed squarely upon his left chest muscle. He wanted to howl, but something came rushing into his mind, a scene that he had no recollection of…

A primitive village near the southeastern base of the Hammerfall Mountains came into view with a group of orcs dancing to a mighty blaze going in the center. There had been a small group six of elves—four men and two women—that had been fool enough to encroach on their lands and they captured the lot of them. The men were held in cages with their limbs bound and their mouths gagged. The women were being passed around to the warlords and the chieftain, their bodies ravaged again and again until they started to enjoy it.

In a hut away from the mindless raping and dancing, a young orc couple had a small child, barely even a week old. They were Buzork and Shuula, misfits amongst the clan that wouldn’t participate in the raids on the nearby dwarven encampments or enjoy the pleasures of the slender, supple bodies of the elves. If it weren’t for their appearance, it would have seemed like that they were more like humans.

The celebration was reaching a fevered pitch when something whistled through the air toward the bonfire. Suddenly, chaos broke out and Zubzar’s parents left him tucked away to investigate. He would never see them again as a band of adventurers that had been hired to locate the lost elven hunting party exterminated all the orcs there. All except for him.

Some of the adventurers wanted to slay him outright: the elves agreed with such a prospect. One of them argued against it, a man that had hair as white as snow and compassionate eyes. They argued for a while until the man convinced them that if he were permitted to live a life amongst good people, he would be a great boon to society.

With that, baby Zubzar was spirited away from the remains of a savage life and given the chance to live in civilization. The white haired man delivered him to an orphanage run by the church of Midus. It took him several minutes of convincing them that it would be a good idea to have him in their care. They grudgingly agreed to take him in…


Then the iron was pulled away, leaving an inflamed mark on his chest. Tears started to stream down his face. He owed everything to that white-haired stranger. He told the confessor about his vision of when he was still a baby and about the white-haired man.

“The man sounds like a Winterborn,” he mused.

“What’s that?” Zubzar asked.

“A subrace of creatures blessed by a lesser deity: the God of Winter, Fenris.”

Zubzar pondered the idea of other gods that might exist next to Midus and he just couldn’t do it. “Well, even if he does worship a weaker god, he still saved me from a fate worse than death. I wish I knew where he went so I could thank him properly.”

The confessor smiled warmly again. “You can show your gratitude by living your life in as good a fashion as possible. If the man is still alive, maybe he will return one day to see if you are well.”

Suddenly, all the insults, all the stigma, all the anger and rage that he experienced paled in comparison to that single act of altruism. “I don’t think you’ll have to worry about any more outbursts from me anymore, Father,” Zubzar said happily.

“No,” he agreed, “I don’t think so either.”


Feel free to offer comments/criticisms/etc. Also, post your own work!

EDIT: I think I cleaned it up pretty well, but let me know if there are still some parts that need clarification.


Last edited by Argent Fang on Thu Sep 09, 2010 11:11 pm; edited 3 times in total
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Dinny on Tue Sep 07, 2010 10:26 pm

I will have a thorough read through this later on, just replying to let you know my interest. I'm pressed for time ATM. Sweat

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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  StarFireSong on Wed Sep 08, 2010 12:19 am

Argent, it's been a while since I've read something from the fantasy genre, & the world you've created is quite intriguing. Smile I did notice some things I thought you could fix, so feel free (or don't) to take my editing as you see fit.

Keep in mind that the changes are easier to see in a Word document, since I have my trusty red "ink". It's the color I've always used to highlight the text changes I make in documents when I'm editing them for others. Smile The changes in the spoilers are a bit messy, but only for the purpose of giving you options to write it another way--if you so choose.

Spoiler:


Argent Fang wrote:He opened the window and let the sickly sweet smell of brine mixed with fish.

"...let IN the sickly..." or "...smell of brine mixed with fish waft in on the air."

Argent Fang wrote:He wasn’t the smartest person in the world, many of his peers even suggested that he was probably the stupidest thing to walk upright they had ever seen.

"...the world; in fact, many of his..."

Argent Fang wrote:He smiled in the knowledge that of all the prospective orphans in Calinport, Zubzar was picked to be one of the knights of Midus!

"...in Calinport, he was picked..."

Argent Fang wrote:He threw on his trainee uniform which consisted of a shirt, breeches, boots, and a tabard.

"...trainee uniform: it consisted of..."

Argent Fang wrote:Everything was bleached white with red trim, the exception being the stylized sun emblazoned in the center of the tabard which was a rich crimson.

"...being the rich crimson stylized sun in the center of the tabard."

Argent Fang wrote:He then grabbed his mighty greataxe which hung from the wall.

"He then lifted his mighty greataxe from its place on the wall."

Argent Fang wrote:It was his most prized possession, weighing a good twenty five pounds.

"...twenty-five..."

Argent Fang wrote:The blade was painted up with a sun pattern and was made of the finest steel.

"...painted with a sun pattern and made of the finest steel."

Argent Fang wrote:Many of the priests balked at him using such a “barbaric” weapon as they called it.

"Many priests thought the weapon was much too barbaric for their tastes, and voiced their complaints." (...or some other adjective if you like.)

Argent Fang wrote:A warhammer Zubzar could understand; it could be equally as powerful and destructive as an axe, but a sword?

"...as an axe. But a sword?"

Argent Fang wrote:The sun burned away the idle thoughts and he went down stairs for his early morning exercises which mainly consisted of him using his greataxe to cut wood for the many fires that were kept alight throughout the day.

"...went downstairs for his early morning exercises. They consisted of him using his greataxe..."

Argent Fang wrote:He went out the door and made his way downstairs, nearly running over a spindly priest along the way. “Watch where you’re going you stupid beast of burden,” he cursed at him. Zubzar completely ignored him as he left the building and headed for the woodyard.

1. Does he nearly run into the priest before or after he makes his way downstairs in the first part of this paragraph? Or does he run into the priest on his way down the steps?

"...you're going, you stupid beast of burden, he cursed. The priest's curses fell on deaf ears as Zubzar exited the building..."


That's to start with. I'm a bit too tired & unfocused to continue at the moment (2:20 AM here) so I'll do a little more tomorrow if you like. If you want, I can just do it all in a Word document & email it to you. It's all up to you. Smile

Good night!

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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Argent Fang on Wed Sep 08, 2010 12:44 am

StarFireSong wrote:Argent, it's been a while since I've read something from the fantasy genre, & the world you've created is quite intriguing. Smile I did notice some things I thought you could fix, so feel free (or don't) to take my editing as you see fit.

Keep in mind that the changes are easier to see in a Word document, since I have my trusty red "ink". It's the color I've always used to highlight the text changes I make in documents when I'm editing them for others. Smile The changes in the spoilers are a bit messy, but only for the purpose of giving you options to write it another way--if you so choose.

Spoiler:


Argent Fang wrote:He opened the window and let the sickly sweet smell of brine mixed with fish.

"...let IN the sickly..." or "...smell of brine mixed with fish waft in on the air."

Argent Fang wrote:He wasn’t the smartest person in the world, many of his peers even suggested that he was probably the stupidest thing to walk upright they had ever seen.

"...the world; in fact, many of his..."

Argent Fang wrote:He smiled in the knowledge that of all the prospective orphans in Calinport, Zubzar was picked to be one of the knights of Midus!

"...in Calinport, he was picked..."

Argent Fang wrote:He threw on his trainee uniform which consisted of a shirt, breeches, boots, and a tabard.

"...trainee uniform: it consisted of..."

Argent Fang wrote:Everything was bleached white with red trim, the exception being the stylized sun emblazoned in the center of the tabard which was a rich crimson.

"...being the rich crimson stylized sun in the center of the tabard."

Argent Fang wrote:He then grabbed his mighty greataxe which hung from the wall.

"He then lifted his mighty greataxe from its place on the wall."

Argent Fang wrote:It was his most prized possession, weighing a good twenty five pounds.

"...twenty-five..."

Argent Fang wrote:The blade was painted up with a sun pattern and was made of the finest steel.

"...painted with a sun pattern and made of the finest steel."

Argent Fang wrote:Many of the priests balked at him using such a “barbaric” weapon as they called it.

"Many priests thought the weapon was much too barbaric for their tastes, and voiced their complaints." (...or some other adjective if you like.)

Argent Fang wrote:A warhammer Zubzar could understand; it could be equally as powerful and destructive as an axe, but a sword?

"...as an axe. But a sword?"

Argent Fang wrote:The sun burned away the idle thoughts and he went down stairs for his early morning exercises which mainly consisted of him using his greataxe to cut wood for the many fires that were kept alight throughout the day.

"...went downstairs for his early morning exercises. They consisted of him using his greataxe..."

Argent Fang wrote:He went out the door and made his way downstairs, nearly running over a spindly priest along the way. “Watch where you’re going you stupid beast of burden,” he cursed at him. Zubzar completely ignored him as he left the building and headed for the woodyard.

1. Does he nearly run into the priest before or after he makes his way downstairs in the first part of this paragraph? Or does he run into the priest on his way down the steps?

"...you're going, you stupid beast of burden, he cursed. The priest's curses fell on deaf ears as Zubzar exited the building..."


That's to start with. I'm a bit too tired & unfocused to continue at the moment (2:20 AM here) so I'll do a little more tomorrow if you like. If you want, I can just do it all in a Word document & email it to you. It's all up to you. Smile

Good night!

This is why it's good to have an editor around. Your suggestions do seem to make certain scenes flow better without changing the context of the story. I wrote it in the expanse of a day and admittedly, hadn't really gone over it with a fine tooth comb yet.

I'll use some of your suggestions to spruce it up a bit. Thanks.
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  StarFireSong on Wed Sep 08, 2010 10:53 pm

Argent Fang wrote:This is why it's good to have an editor around. Your suggestions do seem to make certain scenes flow better without changing the context of the story. I wrote it in the expanse of a day and admittedly, hadn't really gone over it with a fine tooth comb yet.

I'll use some of your suggestions to spruce it up a bit. Thanks.

You're quite welcome. Smile As promised, here's more edits.

Spoiler:


Argent Fang wrote:The quartermaster was there to greet him, much like he was every morning when he gave out the daily chores for the trainees. “Alright Zubzar,” he said, “ready for another day of hard work?” Zubzar nodded mindlessly. “You betcha!” he eagerly said. “Good, because there’s a lot of wood to be cut before breakfast today; you think you can handle it on your own?” the quartermaster asked. Zubzar puffed himself up and said, “By Midus do I perform this task!”

You want to split this up so that each speaker gets their own paragraph.

"...“Alright, Zubzar,” he said. “Ready for another day of hard work?”"

"...he eagerly replied."

"...breakfast today. You think..."

"...up and answered, “By Midus, do I perform..."

Argent Fang wrote:“Sure, sure,” he replied, waving his hand to dismiss him. His piety was something that he questioned, but that was a matter for a later time. When he got out to the woodpile, the quartermaster hadn’t been exaggerating when he said there was a lot to be done. There was a pyramid-shaped stack of thick logs about eight feet high. And he had no assistance this time around. It didn’t matter though, because he would deal with this obstacle the only way Zubzar knew how: with brute force.

Split this one into 2 separate paragraphs (the new paragraph beginning at "When he got out to the woodpile...") since it's a separate action & has no relation to the quartermaster's thoughts.

"...to the woodpile, he realized the quartermaster hadn't been..."

"...about eight feet high, and this time, he had no assistance. This didn't matter though, because he would deal..."

Argent Fang wrote:Here, he could show off his combat prowess and his Midus-given might.

"It was here that he could show off..."

Argent Fang wrote:It was midday by the time he got over to the courtyard, the sun at its apex.

"The sun was at its apex by the time he got to the courtyard."

Argent Fang wrote:The summer sun was the most brutal, but Zubzar loved the heat; it made him feel alive.

"...was the most brutal, but the heat made Zubzar feel alive."

Argent Fang wrote:He would have preferred to spar with actual steel just to prove who really was strong enough to serve their God.

"...just to prove he really was strong enough..."

Argent Fang wrote:His first opponent was a stout man, probably about five three, with heavily corded muscles in his arms and hands from long days of practice with the warhammer he preferred.

"...stout man standing around five-three, with heavily corded..."

Argent Fang wrote:They may be practice weapons, but it was still quite possible to kill someone with an errant blow.

"Although the weapons were for practice, it was still quite possible..."

Argent Fang wrote:Zubzar repelled the attack and then made a wide arc of a swing, nearly catching the guy upside the head.

"...and then swung a wide arc, nearly catching..."

Argent Fang wrote:The cadet tried to move in close to take advantage of such a wide swing but that was what he wanted him to do. Zubzar learned very slowly with most things, but he had a natural instinct when it came to combat.

"...cadet moved in close to take advantage of the swing, but that was..."

For the next sentence, I'd put it in parentheses since it's like a side note from the author to the reader.

Argent Fang wrote:Unfortunately for the cadet charging, he couldn’t stop himself in time to avoid getting his legs knocked out from under him, sending him crashing to the ground with a heavy thud.

"...from under him, and the momentum sent him crashing to the ground."

Argent Fang wrote:That wasn’t enough to stop his opponent, however, since he got to his feet once more almost instantly.

"...his feet almost instantly."


A little more for tonight. The rest'll come tomorrow. Smile

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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Dinny on Thu Sep 09, 2010 2:03 am

Good edits StarFireSong, thanks for doing that. Saves me from saying half the things I wanted to comment on! Even though I think I'm reiterating points here...

Few notes on the story. I have to confess that the overarching theme doesn't fascinate me insanely (the fantasy genre has been plundered to death in my eyes, I literally can't stand reading it anymore, even if it is in every sense very good), but I have to give credit where credit is due and say that it's pretty well-written.

I have a lot to say, so as I promised, condensed in notes:

1. Your sentences are too short: you need more commas and semicolons (run on or linking sentences). Too many. Short sentences. With full stops. Sounds like stopping and starting. For a story paced as this is, you want an ideal combination of long and short sentences. I found a really useful tool some time ago where you can paste a section of text and it will evaluate the balance for you. If I find it again, I'll be sure to pass it on.

Writing entire paragraphs only using short sentences is something that should be reserved for action scenes, or anywhere where you want to give the impression of movement as well as quick temporal progression.

2. I'm not sure why people who do a lot of reading almost never pick up on this, but you're supposed to start on a new line when a new character is talking. Formatting dialog correctly is extremely important: even though you might read it with ease, it will confuse most readers. Example.

Spoiler:
Original:

The quartermaster was there to greet him, much like he was every morning when he gave out the daily chores for the trainees. “Alright Zubzar,” he said, “ready for another day of hard work?” Zubzar nodded mindlessly. “You betcha!” he eagerly said. “Good, because there’s a lot of wood to be cut before breakfast today; you think you can handle it on your own?” the quartermaster asked. Zubzar puffed himself up and said, “By Midus do I perform this task!”

Should be formatted as:

The quartermaster was there to greet him, much like he was every morning when he gave out the daily chores for the trainees. “Alright Zubzar,” he said, “ready for another day of hard work?”

Zubzar nodded mindlessly. “You betcha!” he eagerly said.

“Good, because there’s a lot of wood to be cut before breakfast today; you think you can handle it on your own?” the quartermaster asked.

Zubzar puffed himself up and said, “By Midus do I perform this task!”

Note: Complete single-line spacing is convention when you write stories online, but in print it will only be a line down. (Example)

Spoiler:
In professional print:

The quartermaster was there to greet him, much like he was every morning when he gave out the daily chores for the trainees. “Alright Zubzar,” he said, “ready for another day of hard work?”
Zubzar nodded mindlessly. “You betcha!” he eagerly said.
"Good, because there’s a lot of wood to be cut before breakfast today; you think you can handle it on your own?” the quartermaster asked.
Zubzar puffed himself up and said, “By Midus do I perform this task!”

3. So I'm sure there's some explanation for this, but why does your character stare into the sun during prayer? Is he essentially blind? Does his race have some sort of immunity to eye damage from looking into the sun?

I want to talk about your narrator too, but I might do that later.

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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Argent Fang on Thu Sep 09, 2010 11:20 am

To answer your question about Zubzar, his deity is a sun god, so he thinks that by staring at the sun during prayer, he'll gain some sort of insight into his teachings even though his race his highly sensitive to bright light.

I've seen how books break down conversations giving each person a separate paragraph, and to be honest, I don't know why I don't do it myself. Maybe I'm being too focused on having all of my paragraphs be around the same size and not focused enough on how easy it is for a reader to pick up on things I want them to pick up on.

I looked over my first paragraph and saw what you meant about how short my sentences were. It did read quite awkwardly I had to admit. I show my friends and family members stuff all the time and they never offer editing suggestions like this either because they don't want to hurt my feelings or simply that they don't notice them, I really don't know. I'm glad that you two are able to show me what I'm doing wrong and how to fix it. Learning some self-editing, regardless of how tedious and painful it is to me, will save the editor a million headaches when I send in something for publication consideration.

EDIT: I went over it again and I think I made it sync up a lot better. I'll get around to updating the original post momentarily. Now I need to go over Xenoearth and do the same thing to the conversations in that one. (along with the Argent Fangs)


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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  MKing on Thu Sep 09, 2010 11:21 am

First let me just say I am ecstatic that this thread was created, Argent Fang.
The Poetry Lounge, SIGGGGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!

This is one of my favorite poems written by Langston Hughes

Dream Variations

To fling my arms wide
In some place of the sun,
To whirl and to dance
Till the white day is done.
Then rest at cool evening
Beneath a tall tree
While night comes on gently,
Dark like me-
That is my dream!

To fling my arms wide
In the face of the sun,
Dance! Whirl! Whirl!
Till the quick day is done.
Rest at pale evening...
A tall, slim tree...
Night coming tenderly
Black like me.

Langston Hughes

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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Argent Fang on Thu Sep 09, 2010 12:48 pm

MKing wrote:First let me just say I am ecstatic that this thread was created, Argent Fang.
The Poetry Lounge, SIGGGGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!

This is one of my favorite poems written by Langston Hughes

Dream Variations

To fling my arms wide
In some place of the sun,
To whirl and to dance
Till the white day is done.
Then rest at cool evening
Beneath a tall tree
While night comes on gently,
Dark like me-
That is my dream!

To fling my arms wide
In the face of the sun,
Dance! Whirl! Whirl!
Till the quick day is done.
Rest at pale evening...
A tall, slim tree...
Night coming tenderly
Black like me.

Langston Hughes


I'm not the biggest fan of poetry, but that one is pretty nice.
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  MKing on Thu Sep 09, 2010 1:01 pm

Argent Fang wrote:
MKing wrote:First let me just say I am ecstatic that this thread was created, Argent Fang.
The Poetry Lounge, SIGGGGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!

This is one of my favorite poems written by Langston Hughes

Dream Variations

To fling my arms wide
In some place of the sun,
To whirl and to dance
Till the white day is done.
Then rest at cool evening
Beneath a tall tree
While night comes on gently,
Dark like me-
That is my dream!

To fling my arms wide
In the face of the sun,
Dance! Whirl! Whirl!
Till the quick day is done.
Rest at pale evening...
A tall, slim tree...
Night coming tenderly
Black like me.

Langston Hughes


I'm not the biggest fan of poetry, but that one is pretty nice.

I am glad you liked it.
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Argent Fang on Thu Sep 09, 2010 1:04 pm

Did you read mine?
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  MKing on Thu Sep 09, 2010 1:12 pm

Argent Fang wrote:Did you read mine?

I read it last night. Unlike, Star and Dinny, I won't be proofreading anything, since I am the last person you'll want to proofread over your work. I like the story that you created and the concept behind it, where do you come up with these things?

I also like the piece you wrote over at the old forum in the Super Hero or Villain thread, That story was awesome, and the guy that you created was amazing and very creative, indeed. We should try to give that thread another go, if anybody is interested other than you and I LOL.
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Argent Fang on Thu Sep 09, 2010 2:25 pm

MKing wrote:
Argent Fang wrote:Did you read mine?

I read it last night. Unlike, Star and Dinny, I won't be proofreading anything, since I am the last person you'll want to proofread over your work. I like the story that you created and the concept behind it, where do you come up with these things?

I also like the piece you wrote over at the old forum in the Super Hero or Villain thread, That story was awesome, and the guy that you created was amazing and very creative, indeed. We should try to give that thread another go, if anybody is interested other than you and I LOL.

It's funny you mention The Blue Lupine, because that's actually the name of the story that's getting published, so you're not the only one who liked the character...Smile

He's also one of the central characters in my Xenoearth series that I'm still working on getting published. I might talk more about Xenoearth if anyone gives a shit.
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  MKing on Thu Sep 09, 2010 4:18 pm

Argent Fang wrote:
He's also one of the central characters in my Xenoearth series that I'm still working on getting published. I might talk more about Xenoearth if anyone gives a shit.

Xenoearth series, huh? So you have a whole universal created, and everything.....that's very impressive. Do you draw? I wonder how some of these characters look.
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  StarFireSong on Thu Sep 09, 2010 4:53 pm

Dinny, I agree with the points you made. However, it's best if you keep the document to single-line spacing between paragraphs in manuscripts when you're going to send them out to publishers, unless they specifically request you do something different in the formatting. If they're interested, they'll ask you to make more changes according to their guidelines. There are other publishers who prefer that you do a .5-inch indent to identify paragraphs, & the list continues on... Laughing

I had a friend who wrote fantastically well & in a style reminiscent of Jodi Picoult, but she ALWAYS ended her characters' dictions with a comma. So it'd read something like this:

He said, "No! I really don't want to do this,"

A few hours later, he noticed in disgust that he did it anyway.

It drove me NUTS. Ironically, her teachers taught her to put commas after a character was done talking.


Argent, I just noticed your changes in your original post, & decided to transfer it all to a Word document so I can make the changes there. Once I'm done, I'll upload it to a file-hosting website & PM you the link to download it onto your computer so you can look it over & make changes as you see fit. Smile It'll be complete in the next hour--give or take 15 minutes--compared with the longer time it takes me to make changes on here. (Done! Check your PMs! Very Happy)

Also, it really doesn't matter if your paragraphs are the same length all throughout your work. (I've never heard of anyone demanding paragraphs of equal or similar length in stories.) As long as you let the story come out the way it wants to, that's the way it should be. Wink


Last edited by StarFireSong on Thu Sep 09, 2010 5:45 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  StarFireSong on Thu Sep 09, 2010 5:44 pm

MKing, I really like that poem you posted. Smile

Here's a poem I've loved for quite a while now. Like Argent, I'm not much into poetry, but there are a few exceptions.

Stone By Stone
Rachel Bentley

I have a wall you cannot see
Because it's deep inside of me.
It blocks my heart on every side
And helps emotions there to hide.
You can't reach in,
I can't reach out,
You wonder what it's all about.

The walls I built that you can't see
Results from insecurity.
Each time my tender heart was hurt
The scars within grew worse and worse.
So stone by stone,
I built a wall,
That's now so thick it will not fall.

Please understand that it's not you-
Continue trying to break through.
I want so much to show myself
And love from you will really help.
So bit by bit,
Chip at my wall,
Till stone by stone it starts to fall.

I know the process will be slow-
It's never easy to let go
Of hurts and failures long ingrained,
Upon one's heart from years of pain.
I'm so afraid
To let you in;
I know I might get hurt again.

I try so hard to break the wall,
But seem to get nowhere at all.
For stone upon each stone I've stacked,
And left between them not a crack.
The only way
To make it fall
Is imperfections in the wall.

I did the best I could to build
A perfect wall, but there are still
A few small flaws, which are the key
To breaking through the wall to me.
Please use each flaw
To cause a crack
To knock a stone off of the stack.

For just as stone by stone was laid
With every hurt and every pain,
So stone by stone the wall will break
As love replaces every ache.
Please be the one
Who cares enough
To find the flaws, no matter what.


Perhaps later I'll post one of my own writings.

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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  MKing on Thu Sep 09, 2010 5:54 pm

StarFireSong wrote:MKing, I really like that poem you posted. Smile

Here's a poem I've loved for quite a while now. Like Argent, I'm not much into poetry, but there are a few exceptions.

Stone By Stone
Rachel Bentley

I have a wall you cannot see
Because it's deep inside of me.
It blocks my heart on every side
And helps emotions there to hide.
You can't reach in,
I can't reach out,
You wonder what it's all about.

The walls I built that you can't see
Results from insecurity.
Each time my tender heart was hurt
The scars within grew worse and worse.
So stone by stone,
I built a wall,
That's now so thick it will not fall.

Please understand that it's not you-
Continue trying to break through.
I want so much to show myself
And love from you will really help.
So bit by bit,
Chip at my wall,
Till stone by stone it starts to fall.

I know the process will be slow-
It's never easy to let go
Of hurts and failures long ingrained,
Upon one's heart from years of pain.
I'm so afraid
To let you in;
I know I might get hurt again.

I try so hard to break the wall,
But seem to get nowhere at all.
For stone upon each stone I've stacked,
And left between them not a crack.
The only way
To make it fall
Is imperfections in the wall.

I did the best I could to build
A perfect wall, but there are still
A few small flaws, which are the key
To breaking through the wall to me.
Please use each flaw
To cause a crack
To knock a stone off of the stack.

For just as stone by stone was laid
With every hurt and every pain,
So stone by stone the wall will break
As love replaces every ache.
Please be the one
Who cares enough
To find the flaws, no matter what.


Perhaps later I'll post one of my own writings.

Stone by Stone became one of my favorite poems back on the old forum, I don't remember who posted it, but I became an instant fan after reading it. So cool that you decided to post that one Very Happy
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Argent Fang on Thu Sep 09, 2010 7:32 pm

@ Starfire: That poem was quite nice, I have to admit. Definitely something I can relate to. I'll get around to checking out your edited version of my story when I get home from work tonight.

@ MKing: If I had any real skill or patience with it, I could probably make a feeble attempt at drawing the protagonist. About the best I can do for you is describe how he currently appears in "The Argent Fangs":

Mid-short length silver hair with two different colored eyes, the right being a deep sapphire, the left an angry ruby. He wears a blue warrior's headband with an embroidered gray wolf's head in the center of it which is both a gift from his master for completing his training and a means of covering up the strange marking on his forehead; a silver cresecnt moon seemingly made from thousands of tiny symbols.

The lower half of his face is covered by a blue ninja's mask and around his neck is a long blue scarf which he ties off in the back and lets the ends extend down to about his waist. He wears a mallard blue field coat and a blue t-shirt underneath along with a pair of black leather gloves. Across his chest is a black belt which holds in place his sword, Fenris, securely along his back so the handle juts out from behind his right shoulder. Across his waist is another black belt which holds up his dark blue cargo jeans stuffed into a pair of black combat boots.

Maybe someone with more artistic skill than I will want to bring the character to life? I have a friend that is artistically inclined working on a coverart idea for Xenoearth which I'm anxious to see once he finishes it.

More of you post your stuff!

Also, completely unrelated, the die roll app should be more comprehensive; it should include d4s, d8s, d12s and d20s. Maybe I could attempt to run a tabletop RPG over the forum if anyone is interested.
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  StarFireSong on Thu Sep 09, 2010 9:56 pm

Alrighty... I've been debating on whether or not I should post some of my stuff here since most of what I write is deeply personal. However, I do have a couple (or a few...lol) that aren't, so... Here's the first one I'm gonna post. It's called "The Untold Story of How Seven Ate Eight", & I wrote it shortly after a friend of mine & I had a conversation about our favorite number: 7. Laughing

I'm not sure if I posted it on the old forum, so if I did... My apologies.

Without further ado...


THE UNTOLD STORY OF HOW SEVEN ATE EIGHT
By Madison (as told to Meagan)

You remember that old joke, don't you? Seven ate nine? Well, if you have, you haven't heard the adventure that happened when Seven ate Eight.

See, one day after Seven ate Nine, he thought he might as well eat Eight. You see, Eight wasn't really necessary to the number system… It was just a "bonus" of sorts. (You might be thinking that Seven was a very egotistical number, and you'd be right.) So Eight was swallowed in one mighty gulp by Seven.

After a while, he became hungry, and decided to eat a few more numbers. So down into his stomach went Three and Five. Then he realized that his hunger still wasn't satisfied, so he ate more… And more. He went on his way eating numbers while leaving the other Sevens alone. And he realized there were no numbers left, not even the negative numbers!

So Seven and Seven both added themselves up and the first Seven regurgitated One and Four. Oh, they were overjoyed to be back in the sun again! But once they began adding themselves up, they realized how much they needed the other numbers. So up came the rest of the crew: Three, Five, Nine, Ten, Two, and Six. They gathered round in a group hug, just tickled pink they were back, but then they realized something. Where was Eight?

Seven just shook his head and patted his stomach, saying, "Eight was so delicious that I decided to keep him there." The other numbers were horrified. How were they to continue without their beloved Eight? But after seeing stubborn Seven refusing to return Eight, they discussed amongst themselves and came up with a plan, and, oh, it was a good one.

After a few days of organizing the plan to machine-like perfection, some of the numbers approached Seven. "Hey, how's it going, Seven?" they cried after slapping him on the back on their way into town.

"Just fine!" he said. But when he turned around, the numbers were gone. This really confused Seven because they shouldn't have made it around the bend so quickly. He shrugged it off, continuing on his way and whistling all the while.

When he was nearly back home, he stumbled over a rock. "Shoot! That shouldn't have been there! I thought I got Five to clear this path," he grumbled. Tossing it by the wayside, he kept going, eyeing the ground warily all the while.

But his concentration soon dissipated when he noticed how beautiful the day was. This break provided the perfect opportunity for Nine and Four to trip him. And, boy, did he trip! He tumbled head over heels along the path before landing flat on his stomach on the steps of his house. The impact forced Eight up Seven's throat and out his mouth, and he landed on Seven's door. Nine and Four cheered, and the other numbers joined in when they saw Eight dusting himself off on Seven's porch.

"Serves you right, Seven, for eating Eight!" one of them said. The others agreed.

And that, my friends, is the story of how Seven ate Eight.


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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Argent Fang on Thu Sep 09, 2010 10:43 pm

Cute little story; seven is quite the egocentric number I have to say.

Makes me wonder at how pathetic the number's digestive system is. Razz

EDIT: D/Led and edited my file with your suggestions. Will update my main story once more in a bit.
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Guest on Fri Sep 10, 2010 12:10 pm

I'll read this entire thread later. For now...AF, I like your story. I agree with dinny that the fantasy genre has been done almost to death but I, for one, still enjoy reading it. A good story is a good story; it will make you forget everything else. I'd like to read more. Good job.

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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  MKing on Mon Sep 13, 2010 12:19 pm

Fang: I like the Cargo jeans with the combat boots, that's baddass, 4 real.

Star: I like the story.....I can't help but to feel bad for Seven, since it is my favorite number. Stupid Nine and Four, always up to something sneaky. Funny thing is what if it was Three and Nine, wouldn't that be hilarious, being that Three (Gemini) and Nine (Sag), the Trickster/Jokers of the zodiac LOL....Ignore me please! I am a complete LAME-O.
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  StarFireSong on Tue Sep 14, 2010 6:49 pm

Lol! Thanks, you two. Smile

MKing, I didn't even think of the astrology link! That puts my story in a whole new light. Twitch

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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Argent Fang on Tue Sep 14, 2010 9:33 pm

StarFireSong wrote:Lol! Thanks, you two. Smile

MKing, I didn't even think of the astrology link! That puts my story in a whole new light. Twitch

I'd like to think of it having more in common with Numerology than Astrology.

Regardless, throw in some funny drawing of numbers with eyes and legs (maybe arms too) and you could sell it as a children's book.
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Re: Writing and Poetry

Post  Dinny on Wed Sep 15, 2010 7:31 am

StarFireSong is a geniuuuuussss! Also Mking, that was nuts. I didn't figure you to be that observant/perceptive, that's really really cool.

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