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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Fragments and Feedback for Books » MAGE STORM Revision

   
Author Topic: MAGE STORM Revision
Meredith
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I've just finished a revision to the first three chapters of MAGE STORM, approximately 10,000 words. I could really use a reading by someone who hasn't seen the story already.

First 13:

quote:
At the flicker of green light, Rell raised his head from the row of corn he'd been weeding, glancing up over Da's back. Nothing blocked his view across the open plains beyond their fields. There was a line of clouds on the horizon.

Maybe it was nothing, just a trick of the light or a reflection. Everything was some shade of green or yellow in that direction. Da clearly hadn't noticed anything. He still had his head down, pulling weeds from around the young corn seedlings and muttering. "Back before the war, we'd have had a mage spell the seeds before we planted. Then the corn would grow faster than the weeds and choke them out. Things were easier then."

Rell grimaced as he started to turn back to his own weeding. Once Da got started on that topic, he could go on all day.


Any takers? I'll be glad to reciprocate.

ETA: I should have stated that it's a middle grade fantasy. :

[This message has been edited by Meredith (edited August 30, 2011).]


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A Yeatts
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Send it my way. More than happy to read for you!
Anna

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Wonderbus
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I'll have a read, Meredith.
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MattLeo
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I went back to look at your earlier first 13, which was already pretty good, but I think this is an improvement. I had some momentary confusion in the earlier version about whether Da was for certain Rell's father.

The foreshadowing of the oncoming storm is nicely done here, masquerading as a bit of moody scene painting.

I sent you some comments on your outline before, so I'm probably not the fresh eyes you're looking for, but you can shoot me a copy if you like and I'll critique it for you.


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RyanRussellLunde
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I'm going to critique this a little differently than I have critiqued other 13's. I'm new here and am critiquing for my own education as well as putting in my 2 cents that may or may not be viable.

I like the story and I think its concepts are laid out nicely. So I'm going to pick apart some of the word/sentence structure.

I think the first sentence may be improved by putting ''at the flicker of green light'' at the end. I don't like sentences to start with ''at the'' Starting with the name of the MC would instantly put me in his shoes.

''There was a line of clouds on the horizon''. seems disconnected as just a description of something insignificant in this paragraph. I know it is supposed to be significant, but the simplicity makes it boring. Why are the clouds important? how does Rell perceive them? Don't just tell me there are clouds in the sky. Draw my attention to them by telling me why Rell is drawn to them and thinks that clouds in the sky on this particular day are worth noticing any more than on any other day.

"young seedlings" is redundant

"He still had his head down" I didn't know he did in the first place.

"back before" is redundant but understandable as a common way some old coot starts talking about his past, as long as you want him to talk with these flaws.

You use "spell" as a verb instead of a noun. Is that going to be common in the story? or just a quirk in the way Da talks?

"Then, than, them" all in the next sentence distracted and slowed me down.

"Grimaced" makes me think Rell is disgusted by Da. I suspect you meant to say something like "smirked and raised his eye brows" that constitutes "eye rolling" at this crazy old codger.

I scrutinized much more than I usually would, for two reasons.
There are only 13 lines to critique, and as a type of lesson for myself. I want to learn as much by critiquing as having my own stuff critiqued.

[This message has been edited by RyanRussellLunde (edited September 20, 2011).]


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