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The Things You Can't Imagine - Revision in post 3


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#1 RegE

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Posted 06 March 2018 - 12:17 AM

Ok, So I think my queries nearly at a point where i'm ready to submit. I've never posted any samples of my writing for crit, so it makes me pretty nervous to do this. Here are the first 250 words of my manuscript. The first chapter is told from Kala's perspective. The title is PHREAK, as that is her Strombat alias.


PHREAK


A digital map appeared on Kala’s lenses.

"There are one thousand, one hundred and ninety-eight players online, and active." The OS’s soothing voice sounded in her mind.

Lit up on the map, each player appeared as a coloured icon. Most of them were adolescent gushers and all of them were engrossed in ACCORD’s latest augmented reality game, ‘Street Combat’ or ‘Strombat’ as it was known to the players. Holographs advertised Strombat throughout the city of Agade and its popularity increased every rotation. The older inhabitants—full growns and near deaths—grew sick of hearing the advertisement’s slick blurb, but for Kala and her peers, it was a mantra.

"Form alliances, and break them. Use subterfuge, and cunning to conquer the city, but remember, you came into this world alone, and you will die alone. Will you die a leader or a lowly street rasarat?"

Kala focused on her target. A cluster of purple skulls represented The BallBreakers faction. Their name gave away their ideology. The BallBreakers were an all-female group of male haters. They held a market near to the shallow sea, where they stood guard over a cache of digicredits. Kala thought about taking a closer look at the map, and her OS zoomed in. A crowned skull surrounded by a golden aura caught her attention. The faction leader. “Stats”, Kala murmured.

Codename: Dead_eye

Status: Leader of The BallBreakers

Followers: 48 players

Areas captured: Market square

Sex: Female

Level: 32

Lifeforce: 82%

Playtime: 6,766.24 degrees



#2 DisgruntledWriter

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Posted 06 March 2018 - 09:29 AM

Ok, So I think my queries nearly at a point where i'm ready to submit. I've never posted any samples of my writing for crit, so it makes me pretty nervous to do this. Here are the first 250 words of my manuscript. The first chapter is told from Kala's perspective. The title is PHREAK, as that is her Strombat alias.


PHREAK


A digital map appeared on Kala’s lenses.

"There are one thousand, one hundred and ninety-eight players online, and active." The OS’s soothing voice sounded in her mind. By OS, do you mean "Operating System?" You should say so, since this is the first time we are introduced to it, and then go to the more casual OS later on in the story.

Lit up on the map, each player appeared as a coloured icon. Most of them were adolescent gushers (is this some lingo in their world, or a lingo in this world I haven't heard of?) and all of them were engrossed in ACCORD’s latest augmented reality game, ‘Street Combat’ or ‘Strombat’ as it was known to the players. Holographs advertised Strombat throughout the city of Agade and its popularity increased every rotation. The older inhabitants—full growns and near deaths—grew sick of hearing the advertisement’s slick blurb I'm not sure if this line is nessecary right in the first paragraph. It's backstory. You can probably shift this so it's later on in the chapter, but for Kala and her peers, it was a mantra.

"Form alliances, and break them. Use subterfuge, and cunning to conquer the city, but remember, you came into this world alone, and you will die alone. Will you die a leader or a lowly street rasarat?"

Kala focused on her target. A cluster of purple skulls represented The BallBreakers faction. Their name gave away their ideology. The BallBreakers were an all-female group of male haters. They held a market near to the shallow sea, where they stood guard over a cache of digicredits In real life, or in the video game, haha? I think since the reader doesn't know anything about this video game, there should be a bit more detail. Kala thought about taking a closer look at the map, and her OS zoomed in. A crowned skull surrounded by a golden aura caught her attention. The faction leader. “Stats”, Kala murmured. So, she sees the faction leader stats, and then says them aloud? The way this is wordered is a bit odd.

Codename: Dead_eye

Status: Leader of The BallBreakers

Followers: 48 players

Areas captured: Market square

Sex: Female

Level: 32

Lifeforce: 82%

Playtime: 6,766.24 degrees

 

It's certainly interesting opening a novel on a video game.  My only issue was because this is a video game us readers know nothing about, it's slightly confusing.  It also doesn't grab me as much as it should.  Is there a way you could juggle around the intro to start us at a more engaging part of the video game?



#3 RegE

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Posted 04 June 2018 - 08:05 PM

Here is my revised opening. I have changed my entire manuscript to first person present....which took forever. What do you think of my first 250 words? thanks

 

Ka-la

The Strombat map appears on my lenses.

 

 

There are one thousand, one hundred and ninety-eight players engaged.

 

 I hear the Operating System’s voice in my mind. In Street Combat, nicknamed Strombat, players battle it out in the real-world city, overlaid with holographs. Lit up on the virtual map, each player appears as a coloured icon.

 

I focus on my target. A cluster of purple skulls represents The BallBreakers faction. The faction is all female, all male hating, and all out to break balls. They captured a market near to the Shallow Sea, where they guard the cache of credits I have my sights on taking. I want to take a closer look at the map, and the OS zooms in. A crowned skull surrounded by a golden aura catches my attention. The faction leader. “Stats”.

 

 

Codename: Dead_eye                                                                                                               

Status: Leader of The BallBreakers

Followers: 48 players                                                                                                                                                  

Areas captured: Market square

Sex: Female                                                                                                                                                               

Level: 32                                                                                                       “                                                                     

Lifeforce: 82%

Playtime: 6,766.24 degrees

 

I wonder who the player behind the Dead_eye alias could be. One of my classmates in LifeCore? The Server at Cut Throat Grill who pays more attention to her lenses than her customers? My sister Zaliaha? That’s unlikely. Zaliaha says that Strombat’s for Damu. She uses The Ancient’s word for children without a shred of irony. At eighteen Zaliaha’s three sun cycles older than me, but still behaves like an immature spoilt brat. 



#4 lnloft

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Posted 05 June 2018 - 07:59 PM

 

Here is my revised opening. I have changed my entire manuscript to first person present....which took forever. What do you think of my first 250 words? thanks

 

Ka-la

The Strombat map appears on my lenses.

 

 

There are one thousand, one hundred and ninety-eight players engaged.

 

 I hear the Operating System’s voice in my mind. In Street Combat, nicknamed Strombat, players battle it out in the real-world city, overlaid with holographs. Lit up on the virtual map, each player appears as a coloured icon. This is important information, but it feels too much of an info dump too early on.

 

I focus on my target. A cluster of purple skulls represents The BallBreakers faction. The faction is all female, all male hating, and all out to break balls. They captured a market near to the Shallow Sea, where they guard the cache of credits I have my sights on taking. I want to take a closer look at the map, and the OS zooms in. A crowned skull surrounded by a golden aura catches my attention. The faction leader. “Stats”. << Is this dialogue her talking? It's not entirely clear.

 

 

Codename: Dead_eye                                                                                                               

Status: Leader of The BallBreakers

Followers: 48 players                                                                                                                                                  

Areas captured: Market square

Sex: Female                                                                                                                                                               

Level: 32                                                                                                                                                                          

Lifeforce: 82%

Playtime: 6,766.24 degrees

All of this information is again relevant, but it's a bit much to be starting out on.

 

I wonder who the player behind the Dead_eye alias could be. One of my classmates in LifeCore? The Server Why capitalize "server"? at Cut Throat Grill who pays more attention to her lenses than her customers? My sister Zaliaha? That’s unlikely. Zaliaha says that Strombat’s for Damu. She uses The Ancients' word for children without a shred of irony. At eighteen Zaliaha’s three sun cycles older than me, but still behaves like an immature spoilt brat. 

 

There's nothing really wrong with this, it's just too info-heavy for my taste. Which, ironically, leaves me a little uncertain about things. It's a little overwhelming, and I don't have enough context to process the context you are provide, if that makes sense. I mean, I get overall what's going on, so that's not the issue. It just feels like you're trying to establish everything right off the bat, when you just don't have to. We're getting a lot of new vocab in a short span, for instance, and it's a bit much. I went back and highlighted all the new terms. Another instance that I didn't point out is the last bit of the last paragraph. We don't necessarily need to know about Zaliaha quite yet and learn yet another vocab word right at the very start of the book.

 

But your control of the language itself is solid. Nothing jumped out at me as poorly written or awkward sounding. Good luck.


Nothing to reciprocate on right now; I'm off in the query trenches.


#5 RegE

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Posted 06 June 2018 - 12:56 AM

Thanks INLOFT. Yeah, there is a lot of new terms and I get that it's a little overwhelming.

 

The reason for the heavy info iin the second para is I've had people read the entire chapter and completely misunderstand it,. Before I added that info, readers assumed that the whole thing took place in a computer game (even though i called it an augmented reality game!!) When actually it's the real world, augmented. 

 

I guess the new terms are something that comes with creating a new world. Most of the time I try to keep things simple and easy to get through context. For example, Life-core is obviously school..right?

 

The thing with Zaliaha was an attempt at giving Ka-la's age without outright saying it, but you're right that this might be better placed elsewhere. 

 

Thanks for your advice. I will def look into reducing the number of new, unknown terms. I don't want to overwhelm a prospective agent. 



#6 SnowFox23

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Posted 06 June 2018 - 02:08 AM

Ka-la

The Strombat map appears on my lenses.

 

 

There are one thousand, one hundred and ninety-eight players engaged.

 

 I hear the Operating System’s voice in my mind. In Street Combat, nicknamed Strombat, players battle it out in the real-world city, overlaid with holographs. Lit up on the virtual map, each player appears as a coloured icon.

 

I focus on my target. A cluster of purple skulls represents The BallBreakers faction. The faction is all female, all male hating, and all out to break balls. They captured a market near to the Shallow Sea, where they guard the cache of credits I have my sights on taking. I want to take a closer look at the map, and the OS zooms in. A crowned skull surrounded by a golden aura catches my attention. The faction leader. “Stats”.

 

 

Codename: Dead_eye                                                                                                               

Status: Leader of The BallBreakers

Followers: 48 players                                                                                                                                                  

Areas captured: Market square

Sex: Female                                                                                                                                                               

Level: 32                                                                                                       “                                                                     

Lifeforce: 82%

Playtime: 6,766.24 degrees

 

I wonder who the player behind the Dead_eye alias could be. One of my classmates in LifeCore? The Server at Cut Throat Grill who pays more attention to her lenses than her customers? My sister Zaliaha? That’s unlikely. Zaliaha says that Strombat’s for Damu. She uses The Ancient’s word for children without a shred of irony. At eighteen Zaliaha’s three sun cycles older than me, but still behaves like an immature spoilt brat. 

 

Hey mate, I love the idea of an augmented reality game novel, especially with an all-female faction (that's so awesome and marketable!)

But I have to agree with Inloft. There is nothing really wrong with this, but it's not very compelling. There is a lot of telling (I get that you need to explain your world building, I write fantasy, so I understand) and not enough showing.

It would help if you showed us where your MC is and then interweaved it with the story and world building. Right now, all I'm seeing are statistics and rules.

 

Other than that, the idea is awesome.

 

 



#7 RegE

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Posted 06 June 2018 - 02:21 AM

Thanks very much. Hmmm I think you're both right. Maybe I need to remix my chapter, so I start with more character, action and setting. The explanation of the game cancome a little later. Thanks for your feedback :) :)



#8 punitrastogi

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Posted 06 June 2018 - 08:23 AM

 

Here is my revised opening. I have changed my entire manuscript to first person present(One of the toughest ways to write. My novel is also from the same perspective, and the grammar and approach is a pain at the wrong places)

....which took forever. What do you think of my first 250 words? thanks

 

Ka-la

The Strombat map appears on my lenses.

 

 

There are one thousand, one hundred and ninety-eight players engaged.

 

 I hear the Operating System’s voice in my mind. In Street Combat, nicknamed Strombat, players battle it out in the real-world city, overlaid with holographs. Lit up on the virtual map, each player appears as a coloured icon.(You dont write these things as if you are telling someone. It needs to flow like things that you recall - like a log of your or Ka-La's thoughts, while still being informative and meeting the same goal as the traditional third person narrative. My approach to the same text would be something like-

Strombat has come a long way from the initial stages of the Street Combat game it was designed to be. Telepathic communication with the Operating System, holographic augmentation to the city layout, and a virtual map with each player appearing as a coloured icon.

 

I focus on my target. A The cluster of purple skulls represents The BallBreakers faction - my target for tonight/today/this session. The faction is all female, all male hating, and all out to break balls. They captured a market near to the Shallow Sea, where they guard the cache of credits I have my sights on taking. I want to take a closer look at the map, and The OS zooms in on the point of the map I focused upon.

 

"Hmm", There's a crowned skull surrounded by a golden aura. catches my attention. That can only mean one thing - The faction leader. “Stats”.

 

 

Codename: Dead_eye                                                                                                               

Status: Leader of The BallBreakers

Followers: 48 players                                                                                                                                                  

Areas captured: Market square

Sex: Female                                                                                                                                                               

Level: 32                                                                                                       “                                                                     

Lifeforce: 82%

Playtime: 6,766.24 degrees

 

I wonder who the player behind the Dead_eye alias could be. One of my classmates in LifeCore? The Server at Cut Throat Grill who pays more attention to her lenses than her customers? My sister Zaliaha? That’s unlikely. Zaliaha says that Strombat’s for Damu. She uses the Ancient’s word for children without a shred of irony. At eighteen Zaliaha is ('s is only for belonging or shortening It-is into It's. Unless your complete novel is written in a casual tone and doesn't want to appeal to serious readers) three sun cycles older than me, but still behaves like an immature spoilt brat. 

 

 

Guess what, my entire novel was already written in first-person present. :)

So I was able to relate to a lot of struggles you have had.

I made massive blunders with this grammar when I finished my raw draft.

I am on my 3rd round of editing, and I am still finding such issues in my copy. :(

 

I read a few things about it and learned the things I have written in the first para in Red.

You should read up a few chapters of  "The Hunger Games" to learn how to write with this approach.

 

I can share with you a sample chapter from my text to give you some idea, if you want.



#9 RegE

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Posted 06 June 2018 - 10:43 AM

Guess what, my entire novel was already written in first-person present. :)

So I was able to relate to a lot of struggles you have had.

I made massive blunders with this grammar when I finished my raw draft.

I am on my 3rd round of editing, and I am still finding such issues in my copy. :(

 

I read a few things about it and learned the things I have written in the first para in Red.

You should read up a few chapters of  "The Hunger Games" to learn how to write with this approach.

 

I can share with you a sample chapter from my text to give you some idea, if you want.

 

Brilliant advice again. Thanks. Your way of explaining Strombat naturally, really works. Yeah, first person is hard. Especially when converting everything from third to first. I have to remember how important voice is ,and get out of the narrator's head and into my characters. I will post my revision soon and will crit your newest query tomorrow. Bed time here in Asia! My brain is worn out today! :)






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