All right, I am looking for readers now and I won't shy away from trading stories!
(Kathleen, could you maybe edit the title of thread and add "looking for readers"? Thanks!)
Here's the first 13:
“How quaint. Afraid of a city that lies in ruins.” There was but the hint of mockery in Valyn’s voice. “I am just saying that I find the silence... Unsettling.” Parn replied as he steered his garron through the meandering streets of Rowano. Even the horse was reluctant to move through this accursed city, negotiating its way through the scattering of swords that stood rammed in the ground, each blade a gravestone. “Compared to your yammering, I, for my part, find the silence welcoming. And if anything nasty crosses our paths, well, there’s a remedy for that.” Valyn said, tapping the pommel of his Godslayer.” Parn thought of reminding his comrade that the last envoy did not return from Rowano, but thought better of it.
[This message has been edited by Foste (edited March 18, 2011).]
Good start. Strong characterization: Valyn, the macho overconfident warrior and Parn, a more sensible companion whose viewpoint we see through. The last line really flushes him out showing us that he contemplates his thoughts before speaking or acting on them.
In the first line you tell us there is a hint of mockery in his voice. This is unneccesary; you're dialog is strong enough to make this clear. A simple dialog tag will suffice.
In the last line of dialog it says, "for my part." Do you mean "for the most part"?
Also a nit: there's a misplaced quote after "Godslayer."
I like the majority of it. Nits: 1. I agree with Wordcaster about the mockery. 2. Not sure Unsettling should be capitalized. 3. What is a garron? You then say it's a horse - is garron it's name (capitalize then), a real horse species (my ignorance may be shared by others), or a fantasy/alien creature which you then mistakenly refer to as a horse? 4. You use "thought" twice in the last sentence - consider using "consider" first Otherwise good characterization, setting, and intro.
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1) I concur on the “but the hint of mockery” 2) Ditto on the “unsettling” 3) Garron is going to need explaining in the text, not necessarily in the 13, but likely wherever it is first used. Trading “horse” for “rugged mountain pony” in the next sentence could help, but… wordy. Why does it matter if the horse is a Garron? Whatever that reason is, maybe where that comes into play is the right place to explain. 4) I like “for my part” 5) Ditto on the misplaced quote after "Godslayer." 6) I like replacing the first “thought” with “considered” in the last sentence
Nits aside, seriously, I like it. Willing to crit if you like.
You will, of course, have to explain at some point in the near future just why this place is so cursed that somebody didn't take those swords for themselves. that, and I don't get the connection to the title 'Doll Eyes' yet.