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Author Topic: The Keeper(revised) - Fantasy
AmiraDay
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I put up the first paragraph in a different post and I got a lot of helpful comments and advice from everyone! I tried to follow the advice which was mostly to cut out unnecessary parts and add more details of how he feels and what he is experiencing. With that I rewrote the paragraph and I hope that it has improved. I added things about his environment but mostly his attitude toward it. Anyways, I will paste the Old one and beneath that the new one. Comment away!

Amira

1. THE OLD AND THE NEW (old paragraph)

Asher walked through the revolving doors of the Global News Net building. He stood for a minute in the lobby, watching the people hurry from office to office, . He hadnít been in this building, hadnít even been in the city of Cheyenne in ten years. Heíd taken a small vacation which he thought was fair after two hundred years of hard work for the Central Court of Magic. Starting a news company had been their genius, it served as a cover for the large amount of staff, but it was also very convenient for disguising the massacres of the magicians that chased that stupid dream of ruling the world. Ruling the world for what ? He thought about it, about how it would feel to rule the world. All those worries, wars and revolutions, the thought alone made him shudder.

1. THE OLD AND THE NEW. (revised)

Asher walked through the revolving doors of the Global News Net building. He stood for a minute in the lobby, watching people as they hurried from office to office to get their work done before the deadline. He hadnít been in this building, or in Cheyenne in ten years. After two hundred years of slaving for the Central Court of Magic, heíd gone on hiatus. For all that, coming back here didnít make him feel particularly happy. There was no sense of homecoming. The building had undergone a technological make-over that made it look more like an arcade than a serious workplace. Though, he had to give the CCM credit for even starting a news company. It served as a cover for the large amount of staff, but it was also very convenient for disguising the human casualties of the magicians that chased

[This message has been edited by Kathleen Dalton Woodbury (edited July 23, 2010).]


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AmiraDay
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The new piece was edited because it was too long, but it ends like the first only the sentences are cut, for instance, He thought about how it would be to rule the world. Wars, worries and revolutions...

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WouldBe
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"The new piece was edited because it was too long, but it ends like the first only the sentences are cut...."

You can't put that note in the story , so maybe you should rank what's important and reorder or chuck some of it. IMHO, it still has some filler.

For example, these are mostly your words, with some trimming and reordering. I added a paragraph break because I think that's important. Perhaps it's shortened enough to add back in the stuff cut by SHMBO:

Asher stood in the Global News Net building after a hiatus of ten years, watching busy people trying to meet their deadline. After two hundred years of slaving for the Central Court of Magic, coming back didnít make him feel happy. There was no sense of homecoming. The building's technological make-over made it look more like an arcade than a serious workplace.

He had to give the CCM credit for starting a news company. It served as a cover for the large staff and the human casualties of the magicians that chased....


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AmiraDay
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Thanks for the advice Wouldbe,

I got the advice earlier that there weren't enough details so I got kind of torn between the two, I'll have another look at it!


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InarticulateBabbler
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It's not the amount of details, it's the quality. Distill the core into concise.

For instance, in WouldBe's careful treatment, one word to me is unnecessary: "feel".

quote:

After two hundred years of slaving for the Central Court of Magic, coming back didnít make him feel happy.

I think we get that it's his feeling. Who else's would it be? Would this read smoother to you?:

quote:

After two hundred years of slaving for the Central Court of Magic, coming back didnít make him happy.

But, if you wanted (without removing any of the core details) you could distill two more words into one:

quote:
After two hundred years of slaving for the Central Court of Magic, returning didnít make him happy.

Re-reading this next section, makes me wonder what the "staff" needs a cover for--are they the magi police?--and certain that answer will make me want to turn the page. If you take WouldBe's excellent suggestion of rearranging a few words to make less words necessary, I'll bet you can make two, shorter and clearer sentences out of the last one, and plant an excellent hook.

Again, I hope this helps.


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AmiraDay
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InarticulateBabbler , thankyou again for the suggestions they do help me! I will try and make more efficient use of words to have more clarity and flow.
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chalkdustfairy
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What about combining the sentences "Asher walked through the revolving doors of the Global News Net building, the cover for the Central Court of Magic."? then go to the lobby sentence.
Maybe changing the last part of that sentence to read "to meet their deadlines." Then move to the part about not having been in that building, or Cheyenne for that matter, in ten years.

"He didn't relish the idea of returnig now." possibly? to set up his mood?

I would like to know what he's doing there, why he's coming back.


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AmiraDay
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chalkdustfairy, i actually think that it's a really good idea to make it clear from the start what exactly the Global News Network/ Central Court of Magic is from the start. Good tip! Thankyou!
Oh right, Asher is the head of a magical kind of CIA. Only his is way more powerful and exclusive(it holds only five members). He's coming back, because he had his vacation and now he has to get back to work and lead his team again.

[This message has been edited by AmiraDay (edited July 24, 2010).]


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KoDe Nichols
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Hmm. I think that I'm getting too much information here. Information is good, but, at this point of the story I don't yet care. I think some of these details should be put in later paragraphs. This paragraph should make me care about who this "Asher" is. It should smack me in the face and say "This is important"

I'm not sensing that. I do, however, like the modernized magic concept. Its a too-often unexplored genre.


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AmiraDay
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Kode Nichols , I get your point,
Actually there's a prologue about Asher that introduces him in a slap in the face kind of way. I have revised this opening a little though, and made it more to-the-point.
I think i'll post a piece of the prologue as well..

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KoDe Nichols
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I think theres a natural tendency to try and start everything at once. People try to introduce the character while entering a building while explaining the backstory. It leads to alot of clutter that doesn't yet have a focal point.

You mention that this CCM started a news company. I'd say you should start the story by asher seeing a sudden news broadcast about some sort of tragedy. He then picks up the phone and calls someone, discusses it vaguely, in such a way that the reader doesn't suspect anything unusual and then bam, says something about the magic.

Remember, its all about the hook. A reader will like a potentially interesting premise, but with a hundred other manuscripts to go through, you need something to make him want to read the rest.

Just my thoughts


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AmiraDay
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Thankyou KoDe, that's actually a great idea to introduce the CCM!
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