First Story of the Year. I will be looking for readers in a few days and willing to swap scripts. TIA
Sight betrays the senses required to fulfill the tasks bestowed to the lesser monks of the Celestial Clan. Therefore we, the chosen, are blind. Yet, in the lens of truth, I betray this mandate for I am not truly blind. Beneath the moon, my sight is revealed. In this I am unique. Although I confessed this to the wisdom of my masters, I have always felt somehow fraudulent by virtue. Guilt becomes whispers, prayers for forgiveness and clarity. This night is most mysterious. Though the moon is at its furthest and darkest state, the tide is at the highest I have ever witnessed. My honored Master, Honsu sits upon his stone alter deep in meditation. Waves slap and splash upon the alter as if to tease him from his trance. Behind me, Tinjisi, Revered Dragon is animated. Dragon/Masters are ever in Yin and Yang. One
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"alter" (spelled with only one A) means to change; "altar" (spelled with 2 As) means a religious structure, which is the word I think you want.
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An unusually able individual reflects inward and, next, looks from inside out and around.
"Sight betrays the[X?] senses required to fulfill the[X?] tasks bestowed to the[X?] lesser monks of the Celestial Clan. Therefore[X? or^,?] we, the chosen,[trans?] are blind. Yet,[X Yet&,?] in the lens of truth, I betray this mandate[^,?] for I am not truly blind. Beneath the moon, my sight is revealed. In this[^,?] I am unique. Although[X?] I[^had?] confessed[wc?] this to the wisdom of my masters,[^.] I have always felt somehow fraudulent by virtue[^of...?]. Guilt becomes whispers, prayers for forgiveness and clarity. "This night is most mysterious. Though[X?] the[^capped] moon[capped?] is at its furthest[farthest?] and darkest state,[^.?] the[^capped?] tide is at[X?] the highest I have ever[X?] witnessed. My honored Master,[X,?] Honsu sits upon his stone alter [sp? altar?] deep in meditation. Waves slap and splash upon the alter[sp? altar?+^,?] as if to tease[wc?] him from his trance. Behind me, Tinjisi, Revered Dragon[^,?] is animated. Dragon/Masters[^Dragon–Masters?][^or Master Dragons?] are ever in Yin and Yang. One"
X? delete? (prior word or punctuation mark)
^? insert or replace? (punctuation mark or word, words)
^...? insert more content? (more word[s])
wc? word choice? (diction; inapt, awkward, or wrong word)
X? and transposed? "Therefore[,] we, the chosen, are blind." //The chosen we are blind.//
"by virtue" by virtue of... construction takes the word of and a main noun of the noun phrase: grace, duty, penance, or contrary, maybe ironic, guilt, sloth, deceit, false witness, pride, etc. //by virtue of jealousy.//
"alter" homonym–spelling glitch: altar
Back slash "/" between words means or. Hyphen, for manuscript format, or en dash, actually, for publication format, means and of a contemporaneous nature; for examples, tractor–trailer, nurse–practitioner, attorney–client privilege, Earth–Moon system; though hyphens for compound adjectives: reddish-brown jacket, soot-darkened lens.
First person, present tense, main narrative point of view. Some extra lens filters, problematic for the form, not too burdensome yet.
Viewpoint: Inside perceives inside and outside.
Tone, attitude; affected voice, of a self-entitled, defensive mien, formal register that implies an emotionally distressed affect, suits the milieu and situation.
Some event detail introduction of a somewhat dramatic sense.
Some setting detail introduction of a somewhat dramatic sense.
Some persona, narrator, agonist personality and nature detail introduction of a somewhat dramatic sense.
Some small drama introduction.
A minor introduction of two possible somewhat personal–public problems (complication, antagonism, motivation); a moonlight-sighted individual employed in a vocation that requires light blindness, and an unusually high perigean, or spring, tide from a new moon.
No personal or public want introduction (complication, antagonism, motivation's corollary feature, and want problem as well related to causation).
Small tension development, reader effect tension's suspense's curiosity feature of a moonlight-sighted, otherwise blind individual; some pity-sympathy-empathy incitement, too, maybe; little, if any, corollary fear or private–public urgency introduction.
Some conflict introduction (polar opposite forces in contention, stakes risked) oriented to acceptance and rejection of a somewhat sighted blind individual within a milieu where blindness is required; maybe, also, whatever an unusual tide represents.
Title: "Moon, Captive, Dragon, Destiny" Word salad, likely a placeholder title.
Most curiosity evocation standout from a solely moonlight-sighted individual. Some logic issues with that. Moonlight is lunar regolith-reflected sunlight. Logically, therefore, local-area reflected sunlight should also be visible under low light conditions, in particular, if from materials similar to lunar regolith. Or that is a mystical–magic ability developed due to extrasensory somatic perceptions that blindness fosters. That would be, perhaps, a potent, private dramatic circumstance if its initial onset is at the narrative's start and develops over time, fully developed when crucial to a dramatic peak, private and public. That holds powerful dramatic incitement and movement promise (antagonism, causation, and tension developments, ACT).
A perigean, or spring, moon high tide occurs three or four times a year, at Earth–Moon perigee, highest tides at or about an hour or so after noon or midnight solar time; half again as high as mean high tide for middle latitudes; higher latitudes, one high-high tide per day; equatorial-tropical latitudes, little notable tidal height variation. Tides cycle about an hour later each day, irrespective of where on Earth. Likelihood of new moon spring tide is equal to a full moon's spring tide occasions. The highest new moon perigean spring high tide occurs during daytime, near coastal regions, an hour or so after lunar zenith, though, might be nighttime if heightened by persistent overnight onshore gales. Offshore blows more often occur nighttime; onshore, daytime. Full moon's highest tides occur at night, at lunar nadir.
Noon-ish? Midnight-ish? Onshore gales? Daylight blindness, lunar-light sight, darkest moon, highest tide, unless the moonlight-sight ability is fully fantastic, doesn't add up. A few adjustments would defuse that and hold doubt of whether fully fantastic or possible, authentic, mystic extrasensory ability open until a progression of reveals later.
These matters, and the celestial, dragon-masters, and South Asian mysticism, suggest somewhat where and when and situation in time and space from which the narrator–agonist reflects. Maybe a clearer, stronger, specific sense of place, time, and situation is wanted?
Sidereal time is worth a consideration for the narrative overall, a time-related given fixed point on Earth that corresponds to a given fixed point in the "celestial" heavens for ease of astral observations.
I might read on a few more paragraphs, somewhat curious what a sunlight-blind, maybe any regular light-blind, reflected moonlight-sighted individual could get up to external and internal crisis- and contest-wise. Not a particularly strong dramatic movement start, though more dynamic than a slow start (non-start), not quite a quiet start.
quote:Sight betrays the senses required to fulfill the tasks bestowed to the lesser monks of the Celestial Clan.
Had I a bit of context to make sense of this it might be meaningful, but I suspect that a good deal of the story needed to give me that remains in your head.
My first thought was, How can sight betray "the senses" given that it is a sense. And wouldn't that depend on what was seen?
I'm certain you have intent for how I was to take those words, but since intent doesn't make it to the page...
And given that I have no clue of what the "Celestial Clan is, or why they have monks, or what their duties are, or what a "lesser monk" is—or why tasks are "bestowed," not assigned—I'm lost.
quote:Therefore we, the chosen, are blind.
Therefore? And who the hell are "we?" Is that ten people? A hundred? One person who's speaking in the imperial "we?" No way to know. And what was this group chosen for, and by whom?
Words we have, but context is lacking. Perhaps the fault lies in me, but from my viewpoint, someone I know nothing about, whose lives in an unknown place and time, is telling me things that make no sense for unknown purpose.
Won't you take pity and place me on-board by at least making me know where I am, what's going on, and whose skin I'm wearing?
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I am assimilating. I should have mentioned that this is fantasy. Not my typical SF. I am grateful for all the input. I shall employ advice that you all have given. Thanks a million.
Posts: 1888 | Registered: Jan 2008
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An intriguing start. Is it enough to keep me reading with its portents of revelations about character and the foreshadowing of dire things to come? For a page or so, perhaps. But you’d better get cracking on some of the explanations and enlightenments Jay Greenstein mentioned.
My only real suggestion concerning the submitted fragment at the moment is you might want to consider a more ‘poetic’ style of rhythm for the character’s exposition.
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