weaver of the unseen
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Greater London
Re: Prologue (re-written on advice of sff)
As I was saying to Christian I have noticed that when I cockup the artist shouts at me in public, but when I do some good, I get a private thank you. But in this case, as Christian requested, I will do a detailed critique. And you don't have to thank me in public.
Originally Posted by Christian Nash
I would like you to take a look in previous threads that says prologue and think about what people says there in the regards of the prologue actually being the first chapter. As we don't know about more about your WiP, I let you to do decide if you want to go forward with a prologue rather than a first chapter.
When Iím a mighty Liberata, I wonít treat people like this, I wonít keep servants, thought Vulgaris.
Remove the highlighted bit and use the narrative to introduce the thinker.
At here, if you would dive into the close third, you would reword the sentence from the beginning. Just subtly little differences.
Sick of cleaning warriorís boots, and waiting on people, the young boy decided to sneak off. Peeping round the kitchen door, Vulgaris checked for any Liberata guards that might be patrolling the castle halls, but the coast remained clear. Taking his chance, Vulgaris darted out into the corridor, the ornate rugs soft on his bare feet.
Sick of cleaning warrior's boots and waiting on people, Vulgaris tossed aside his worn brush and looked around. There was nobody else around. Not even the chef's usual helper. As he peeped from kitchen's door, the coast remained clear. It felt almost as if the Liberatian's guardians had abandoned the castle.
This is it!
If you compare that to your own prose, you notice a difference, where yours is narrated from outside POV and mine dives into the character head. I try to keep that going as long as I'm writing in the third person perspective. And in that way the reader gets closer to the character, and if you establish it at the beginning of the work, the readers are more likely to fall for your character than them looking him or her or it from a distance. But then again, that is a matter of personal stylistic choices, like the one that you have done here.
| Vulgaris had been through these halls many times, always with a destination in mind, but now he wished to lose himself. To try and find some kind of freedom. Pre-occupied, Vulgaris tripped on one of the rugs and cried out as he hit the floor head first. The rug doing nothing to lessen the pain that rattled through his skull. |
I don't know why but I often read the I am legend and marvel the author's ability to use the gender word (he/she) in the place of a name. And more I read his work, more I feel the deeply connection to the unfortunate "omega" man, and that is all down the author's ability to write close third person POV.
So, as this is a stylistic choice, you should think how much you want to use Vulgaris and how much you want to use the gender name.
Personally I feel that as soon as you drop the name, and start using the gender, your prose will change to another direction, and that might mean another complete rewrite from much closer perspective. Also notice in the above example that out from a brief introduction, I try to stay out from using the name or even the gender word, and stick with the things that I can describe by using his senses/thoughts.
| The distinct sound of metal armour caused his head to snap up and a Liberata guard rounded the corner. Before Vulgaris could pick himself up, the man hesitated for a moment. Their eyes locked and Vulgaris assumed the worst. With the guard approaching, Vulgarisí heart began to thump and he could feel the blood rush to his head. Vulgaris jumped to his feet, his legs taking over as he began to run. |
Nice tension. Could you add there inner monologue to give out subtle exposition?
| Vulgaris couldnít hear anyone behind him, but still didnít want to risk being discovered. Determined to get as deep into the castle as possible he fumbled down the well crafted stone halls. Unfamiliar portraits and paintings of battles long since passed, catching his eye. They reminded him off what the Liberatos and their Wardens stood for. He had always been the model servant, but every time he heard Liberatos speaking about going overseas to Drekka, or warring against Slavers, it got him thinking more, wanting more. |
This is what I'm talking about. Very nice. Beautiful exposition.
| Still only a boy, Vulgaris knew he couldnít join the Liberatos yet, but it didnít stop him from wanting to be like them. Guilt pricked at him though as he searched for somewhere to hide. The Liberatos had always been good to Vulgaris, and had taken him in when all else seemed lost. They fought against powerful city kings and yet still had the compassion and time to take on a lost soul. Vulgaris would never, could never forget their kindness. Killings and Slavery were common place in Utan, but the Liberatos stood a symbol of hope, and the white hand on their tabards - the hand of freedom. |
Why do you insist on using his name so much?
Sorry, I have to cut there as I need to run. Continuing tomorrow.