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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Fragments and Feedback for Short Works » No title yet - may be part of a novel eventually... first 13

   
Author Topic: No title yet - may be part of a novel eventually... first 13
feralucce
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Not many girls can claim that their best friend while growing up was a warship. I can. You see, my father was a diplomat on a Sun Descending class Corvette. Yeah, I know, they decomissioned all of those long ago, but we still fly her. Just because the fleet has a new kind of ship doesn't mean the old ones aren't worth having. My dad got her for a mint. Well, he bet a mint, I think. Daddy liked to gamble. You might say he got his mint and ate it too.

The Sun Descending class of ships was one of the first to have integrated artificial intelligence on board every one. Before then, it was rare to find them on most military ships, and even then, they were after market add ons. Now days, every ship has one. The science of AI is very in vogue right now. They almost

[This message has been edited by Kathleen Dalton Woodbury (edited February 07, 2007).]


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wbriggs
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I suggest warship->starship. When I found that "we still fly her," I realized it wasn't an oceangoing ship. Airship? Best to be clear.

Got his mint and ate it too: not relevant, I think; I'd strike it.

In paragraph 2 we get that the ship is intelligent. I'd rather have it in paragraph 1. If you did that, I don't think you'd need paragraph 2; you could go straight to the action.

Nit: that AI is almost perfected -- doesn't seem likely. There's always further to go. If it needs saying, maybe something like "AI has improved greatly" or something specific.


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Survivor
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I think that "warship" is a specification that adds a lot of flavor. But you could give her a name early on, "my father was a diplomat on [name of ship], a Sun Descending class Corvette."

"I know, they decomissioned all of those long ago, but"...even without her armament she's still my best friend. Something like that. That gives more importance (or specifies the importance) to being decommissioned and at the same time emphasizes the perspective that she's a person rather than an object.

I think that the information in your second paragraph needs to be personalized more from the narrator's perspective. "[name of ship] was the first shipboard integrated artificial intelligence I ever met. Before the Sun Descending class came online, it was rare to find them on most military ships. Now days, every ship has one, but [short explanation of why [name of ship] was better]." Focus on her own experiences with [name of ship].

Did I mention that I want you to name the ship?

Also, minor nit, do you think you could give the entire class a cooler name like "Star Diver" or "Solar Descent" or "Substellarnaught"...um, not that I think "Substellarnaught" would be a cool name


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RMatthewWare
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The second paragraph seems a lot more coherent. The first one didn't flow as well.

Matt


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feralucce
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Survivor:

you said "Also, minor nit, do you think you could give the entire class a cooler name like "Star Diver" or "Solar Descent" or "Substellarnaught"...um, not that I think "Substellarnaught" would be a cool name" While you bring up a good point, mos of my work is heavily researched. I want to apply logical extensions of current tech, science and culture. I may not succeed, that has yet to be seen.

I said that so I can say this. When you look at the names of ship classes in our current time period... there are only a couple "Cool" ones - Black Hawk and Bellatrix are a couple. The rest are things like - Newport News, Sara Thompson, Greenville Victory and Crater.

Sun Descending was a consious choice. It is a commentary on the state of mankind at that point. Other classes that would be in the novelised version would be Fading Glory, Zeitgheist and the diplomatic ships of the Oh'oponopono class. (a Hawaiian word that there is no english translation for. It is a custom of locking arguing parties in a room together untill it is all worke dout.)


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feralucce
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brigss: working on the rewrite suggested. THOUGH... it is the POV character's perception that it is almost perfected... not a fact.
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Newport News, Sara Thompson, and Greenville Victory are all names of specific ships, rather than classes. And what's not cool about "Crater"?

Zeitgeist is a pretty cool name for a ship class. A trifle effete, but still cool.

The thing about ship class names is that the official class designation is usually something like EC4-K-B1 or some kinda semi-random alphanumberic like that. Sometimes the numbers and letters mean something, sometimes they really don't. The class name in popular usage is a colloquial term, it will only match the "official" nickname if the official nickname is cool enough. When an individual ship is commissioned or bought, the new owner can assign a name by fiat and only the crew will be familiar with any alternative names they invent. But that's much less true with an entire class, if the ships are built in significant numbers. A much larger population will have need of a name for that particular kind of ship, and most of them will be dockhands and mechanics and such.

Besides, what's wrong with having a cool sounding name? "Solar Descent" probably has whatever association your trying for with "Sun Descending" but it's snappier. Not that the colloquial name would have to do with the class' purpose half so much as the apparent qualities of the design itself.

Anyway, that was my most minor nit. Assuming that you don't refer to the ship by class very often in the rest of the story.


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