on another not while editing my second chapter i became utterly annoyed at myself and run-on sentence, though gabriolla font, is small like my hand writing and is a little hard to edit...
EDIT: Chapters 1-3 are edited edited most of chapter 4 finishing off the chapter and i should be posting later today.
Last edited by Anduril248; February 23, 2013 at 01:12 PM.
I know, i am just getting used to full navigation again.
So, I'll give a go at critique as well as comment on this one, hope it doesn't seem personal or insulting- please bear in mind I do really like the story or I wouldn't be writing this!
This is a good story with an interesting plot and I can see you've taken Audacia's sound advice on board with the sentences. Also, the tone you have created is very martial, which is appropriate and I like. Sometimes, though, the long sentences can seem a little jarring-
But your structure is much improvement on sentences like this and as a reforming pedant your correct use of the semi-colon had me purringThere are only a certain number of units active at one time, each of the cavalry strata have two units active at any given time. The longbowmen have four units active at any given time. While infantry also have four companies active at one time.
However, I think your problem sometimes is not so much running on as overuse and abuse of the comma, such as this sentence- either take some commas out or separate it into two ideas. Gottfried and Greystark are mixed up here and it could be clearer.His expression was truly puzzling; his usually bright and sharp eyes were dim and cold.
Positively, you have also done the battle scene really well, both in the content and the delivery the use of short sharp sentences really rams up the sentences. I can see you are already using longer sentences with more commas for description and shorter sentences for action, so bear that in mind when writing the rest of the time. With practice, it will come in a way much more natural and read much better, as the ending scene does.“Good, I am taking my leave, Caelian,” said Gottfried as he quickly left the office, my adjunct, a man by the name of Joshua Greystark, who served as my squire until achieving knighthood some six months ago, entered my office.
Overall, reading through it, you can see at the start your style is almost a little stunted by forcing it into shorter sentences but as you grow into the story you return to longer sentences and a more train-of-thought style. When it is more modulated, as in some of the examples I have given, or used for a purpose, as it is in the battle scene, your writing style is impressive and clearly developed from earlier scenes keep this up, an enjoyable tale for the reader and very useful for youNeedless to say Gottfried wore an amused expression at my slight discomfort at the time. I simply took my seat and consumed a glass of wine. I took a deep breath to calm myself. - effective creation of tension - same in battle scene at end
First, off thank you Schodinger for the critique, and I am not offended easily so don't worry. I have prepared a response to it, though i will always keep it in mind for my next chapter.
Poor comma, . That is an interesting view, i feel like i some times ramble on like a politician giving a speech......, I think your problem sometimes is not so much running on as overuse and abuse of the comma
This was originally one sentence, though i might correct it to something like this: There were only a certain number of units active at one time: Two companies from each of the cavalry stratums, and four from the infantry and longbowmen stratums. (I actually looked up strata, and I found that i was misusing it, that Stratum, or Stratums were the correct way to use that word, though section or segment might do fine as well. When i wrote this section of writing, i could not think of a simple term that would fit so i through in strata......)There are only a certain number of units active at one time, each of the cavalry strata have two units active at any given time. The longbowmen have four units active at any given time. While infantry also have four companies active at one time.
and here i thought i got them all. will be fixed when i do chapter five.“Good, I am taking my leave, Caelian,” said Gottfried as he quickly left the office, my adjunct, a man by the name of Joshua Greystark, who served as my squire until achieving knighthood some six months ago, entered my office.
its been three years six months, since i joined. so an average 85 posts a year. i guess i don't like people much lol
Last edited by Anduril248; February 24, 2013 at 11:49 PM.
Your opening paragraph tells the whole story. It is the equivalent of "My name is Frodo and I destroyed an evil ring that I inherited from my uncle." Omit the opening completely.
"I am Caelian and my life was destroyed when I was eight."
This is an opening that catches the reader's attention. Show the reader through the eyes of a child the events of this chapter. Describe how he is with his beloved father at the river when the messengers come. Let the reader feel his amazement at seeing the knights. Show, don't tell of his life with uncle Isaac. Don't skip the incredible tragedy that Caelian experiences at his father's passing. "I did mourn for my father." just won't do at all. This is the defining moment in his life where the boy becomes a man. Show, don't tell the reader how your character grows into being the story's protagonist. End the first chapter with a "hook" so that the reader wants to continue.
"I begged uncle Isaac for my father's sword. I'll have need for it."
You can write longer sentences than some people will want to read. Unfortunately, this is not an accomplishment. You seem to want to say too many things in one sentence. Think of each sentence as a step on a stairway. Most readers won't appreciate taking giant steps. Isolate on one thing in each sentence and then say it the best way you can. This is called "word-smithing".
The second chapter should start with a herald announcing the tournament. It's a direct statement of what comes next and catches the reader.
"By order of the Lord of Nottingham, a great tournament is to be held..."
You do a better job of showing what Caelian is going through. You still have a few little points to tweek. Don't have a long paragraph about the wandering merchant telling of the tournament and then have Caelian repeat the exact same text. This is needlessly repetitive. Read your work aloud to yourself. This shoudl help you see where periods belong.
In chapter three, you start by telling us how Caelian is changed and then saved. Then you show us how Caelian is changed and then saved. Stop telling and keep showing. Show Caelian and Robert winning the wargame. You use really long sentences, but tell so little of the story with them.
In chapter four, the story stops and an AAR begins. I know more about the uniforms of Caelian's unit than I know about the last eight years of his life. You have a very interesting story that wants to be told. Good luck!
An army of rabbits led by a lion will always overcome an army of lions led by a rabbit. Napoleon
Whew where to begin, first off thanks for the Critique. I will now respond.
The reason you know more about it is because i described more, the first three chapters do need serious re-work in that regard, my corrections, were not so much about adding as cutting down on the run on sentences. Audacia, did mention the lack of detail. Think of chapter four not so much as an AAR, but the foundation for the first campaign. I felt that it was needed. I had not started writing chapter four in yet when i had gotten Audacia's critique.In chapter four, the story stops and an AAR begins. I know more about the uniforms of Caelian's unit than I know about the last eight years of his life.
Honestly, the opening has been an issue for me, and it is starting to irritate me. I have a far more planned and fleshed out story in my head, and i am unable to start it..."I am Caelian and my life was destroyed when I was eight."
This is an opening that catches the reader's attention.
Multiple times, you mentioned long sentences, i had written it in an almost internal monologue, and i kind of ramble on. I try and cut down this when i do my editing. It does always work.
EDIT: I am all out of steam.
EDIT: I am sure i need to compeletly rewrite the first three chapters, but i am not yet ready to put that kind of effort into it. (I need to do a lot of research and planning. This does not have the level of planning that i usually do for a story at all.)
Last edited by Anduril248; February 27, 2013 at 07:13 AM.
I know what you mean. Editing doesn't always mean cutting out parts of the story. It can also mean fleshing out. Take this one sentence:
"I did buy a new horse for various uses, it was a pitch black gelded courser who had great speed but not the size or strength of a destrider, I named him Falcon."
You tell the reader a lot in one statement. Why not make a story within a story instead? As an example, if I may:
I needed to buy a horse for my trip to Nottingham. Money most certainly was an object to contend with, but I knew this was going to be a very important purchase. A mount was an extension of a warrior's body. I might live or die by the horse that I chose.
I stood by the pen and scutinized the horses that were available. Most were too large for my liking. However, a gelded courser that was black as pitch caught my eye. I counted what was still my own coin for the last time and then approached the merchant. "Sir, if you have spent enough feeding that small black gelding, then I might be willing to take him off your hands."
The merchant laughed, no doubt impressed with the savvy my uncle Isaac had taught me and replied, "Well 'Runt' does eat a lot, he does. I believe I could part with him." He called to one of his stable hands, "Robbie, bring Runt over here."
I ran my hand over the horse's mane and he swished his tail in response. The merchant was going on about how Runt would be a perfect horse for his poor neighbor's children, but that he could sell him to me instead. I held my purse tightly and asked, "Why do you call him Runt?"
"Well he is the smallest horse I have, no good for breedin'. If his mother had given birth to a litter, then he would have been the runt, he would. So, can I show you another horse?"
I shook my head, "No sir, I'll take Runt."
Uncle Isaac had entrusted me to take two very fine swords to Nottingham. I was not going to dissapoint him in any way. I packed well for the journey and hoped to find out more about the Tournament there. The weather was fine for traveling and Runt seemed as happy to leave our little village as was I.
Runt was actually a very fine mount. Once we were out of earshot, I started a discussion with him, "All right then, as your owner I will instruct you in your new duties."
"When I yell 'Come' you will come to me and be ready to ride off. In battle, when I command 'Charge', you shall charge with your head up. Should things not go well and I yell 'Run', then you run like the dickens. Don't stop for anything...unless I fall off. Got it?" Runt neighed in response and shook his head.
By midday, the two of us were ready for a meal. I stopped by a brook and fished an apple out of my pack for Runt before getting one for myself. I patted his side and apologised, "I'm going to leave your load on because we won't be here long, but you'll get a proper rest in Nottingham."
A rough voice behind me called out, "It's a long way to Nottingham, little master. Perhaps your horse's burden should be adjusted."
I swung around only to see a scruffy fellow that was obviously up to no good. Then another guy as rough looking as the first came out of the bushes with a drawn dagger and added, "Yes indeed. Let's have a look at what you might...leave behind."
The men moved closer and I wished that the two swords my uncle had given me weren't so tightly bound to my horse. The men were almost upon us when Runt raised up on his hind quarters, kicking and neighing. The men had not expected this and scattered. I sprang onto Runt and cried out, "Run!" No sooner had we left the two behind when a third robber on a horse charged out of the scrub. He had a long menacing sword in his left hand and wore a light chainmail cuirass.
Runt took off like a lightning bolt. The highwayman gave chase, but his horse labored under the burden of the man's armor. We raced up a hill and I looked over my shoulder only to see the man reign his mount in and give up. After a short while, we stopped and I gave a well earned sigh of relief. I patted my horse and whispered in his ear, "From now on, your name is Falcon."
Little vignette's like this spice up your main story and show the reader the character of your protagonist. Many simple statements in your tale could be like seeds that grow into stories of their own.
An army of rabbits led by a lion will always overcome an army of lions led by a rabbit. Napoleon
the reason i said cut down was i was literally taking many if not most of the long sentences and break them down.
I am not going to have a chapter, though i might write a prologue this weekend, and re-write chapter One Completely.....
Edit: Prologue is done, just have to type it, and writing chapter five right now.
Last edited by Anduril248; March 04, 2013 at 12:20 PM.
i kind of hit writers block so i wrote the prologue...which is still not typed, right now i am on vacation, and i have had little time. i do intend to continue writing. this it just i have two ideas right now continue along the war path thru scotland or one that take Caelian on a far different road. and the start of my fifth chapter has been challenging...
Last edited by Anduril248; August 22, 2013 at 07:05 PM.