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Woadwarrior
April 8th, 2007, 03:01 PM
Hello all.

I've just posted my latest chapter of my first novel 'Beginnings'. Detailing more of Ekove's life, right now he still hasn't joined the navy and the war hasn't started yet. :P But I hope to get to everything handled before the shooting starts.

http://www.sffworld.com/community/story/2365p0.html

So here's the link. Reviews and comments would be greatly appreciated. For those who don't know about my idea for the story world, please look at my older threads on the matter to get a general idea what I'm writing about, it's very relevant to the issue. Thank you. :)

James Carmack
April 9th, 2007, 09:13 PM
Well, the first thing I can say is that I was able to get into the story without reading the previous chapter or having any prior information as a plot. There are definite merits to that.

The premise is good, the pacing is fine and the characterization comes off well. Those are the positives.

Among the negatives is somewhat awkward narrative and bits of unnatural dialog. It's not enough to make it unreadable, but keeps it from being as smooth as it could be. Without doing a line-by-line workshopping, my best advice is to read the story aloud and rework parts that don't come off quite right.

A few techical points include the following:

"aftermaths" - "aftermath" is never pluralized

"While every other one has emphasis on guns, your nation has emphasis on airplanes and torpedoes." (Page 2) - I'm guessing the equivalent technological period for this world is around the 30's here on Earth. Technically, air superiority proved itself back in WWI, but there were still hold-outs that held sway into WWII, hence the fielding of battleships like the Bismark and Yamato. If this is simply a case of old doctrine dying hard, that's fine. Just bear the example of our world in mind if you haven't done so already.

"with over 28% of their national income spent on their military!" (Page 5) - As a general rule, avoid exclamation points in the narrative. It makes you look like an amateur unless it's adequately justified. It's better to have the narrator not be so prone to emotion, except perhaps in a first-person story.

"No sane minded people" (Page 5) - The negative calls for the singular and "sane" alone is adequate, ergo "No sane person". (After all, you wouldn't speak of someone as being "insane-minded", now would you?)

"A smile caressed his face" (Page 7) - Smiles caress nothing. You could say "A smile crossed his face", though.

At any rate, the core of the piece is good, so you've got something you can work with. Keep it up.

Woadwarrior
April 10th, 2007, 03:01 AM
Thanks for the response. I really appreciate the comments. :)


"While every other one has emphasis on guns, your nation has emphasis on airplanes and torpedoes." (Page 2) - I'm guessing the equivalent technological period for this world is around the 30's here on Earth. Technically, air superiority proved itself back in WWI, but there were still hold-outs that held sway into WWII, hence the fielding of battleships like the Bismark and Yamato. If this is simply a case of old doctrine dying hard, that's fine. Just bear the example of our world in mind if you haven't done so already.


Yes it is based in a World War 2ish setting. Some history I SHOULD mention is this.

Firstly, during the 1920's and 1930's, the role of air power in future military conflicts was uncertain... there were tons upon tons of theories thrown about, but there would be no real means to test them until some war came up. When World War 2 started, there were STILL tons of misconceptions. Some of those were the idea that bombers would not need fighter escorts or could hold their own against fighters without an issue... this was proven wrong.

Another misconception was that air attack alone could not disable or sink large capital ships like Battleships and battlecruisers. It took the Attack on Pearl Harbour, with the destruction of the USS Arizona, as well as the sinking of the HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse to prove this wrong.

I'm trying to put it into perspective of how people thought at that time, not of what we know now.

World War 1 proved that airplanes were indeed of military value, but it took World War 2 for airpower to reach maturity.


"with over 28% of their national income spent on their military!" (Page 5) - As a general rule, avoid exclamation points in the narrative. It makes you look like an amateur unless it's adequately justified. It's better to have the narrator not be so prone to emotion, except perhaps in a first-person story.

"No sane minded people" (Page 5) - The negative calls for the singular and "sane" alone is adequate, ergo "No sane person". (After all, you wouldn't speak of someone as being "insane-minded", now would you?)

"A smile caressed his face" (Page 7) - Smiles caress nothing. You could say "A smile crossed his face", though.

I'll correct these, thank you. :)

James Carmack
April 10th, 2007, 06:04 AM
Okay, you've got a solid handle on military history and theory, so I don't need to worry on that front. Good to know. ^_^