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krissy901_830
October 15th, 2010, 02:14 AM
This is a very short blurb from a story I am writing. Please critique to your heart's content. =D




Today is Bronzewind Dragon Rider Academy graduation day, the day trainees go into the Hatchery and come out Incantato with their life partners, the dragons. It is a highly celebrated day around all parts of the continent in every kingdom, because it is the day more Incantato are put out into the world to protect the people from horrible things. The trainees are rounded up from birth by the few Incantato who can sense magic in others. When a child is born the Incantato will come and if magic is sensed they will take the child away to Bronzewind; though they don’t even have to do this since Incantato are usually born with blood-red eyes, a trait of their heritage. It is considered a huge betrayal if you hide your child or do not let the Incantato take it.



Once taken, the children are trained to withstand the roughest conditions, wield their magic and an assortment of weapons, learn to read, write, speak quite a few different languages, math, concepts of war, combat situations, the history of Incantato and Dragons, etc. Few graduate though and sometimes a rider does not find a dragon. Both conditions lead to them being kicked from the academy and usually sent to one of the capitals to protect the royalty. Out of my class of thirty people, eleven graduated, and most likely only one will find a dragon. I just hope that 1 person is me.


I stood in my closet-like room of which I know every crevice, crack, and dark patch of the bland stone walls and wood floor. In the little room I have a lumpy bed, pillow, and rough brown blanket of which I had replaced with a thick red cotton one I had gotten from my home in Rosamere. The only thing I had to put my items in was my huge white trunk lined in golden paint. A small window let in the only light and that completed my plain room. I tugged the red sleeves of the finest trainee gown I have. It is a red dress besides the black border along the gown and separating the white puffed tops of the red sleeves and the gown with its long train. I scuffed my black slippers on the ground annoyed at the sun for not coming up fast enough. I had awoken long before sunrise out of excitement of the ceremony that started then. I stared out of the window angrily at the sun peeking above the distant green tree-lined horizon.


I went out into the hall and to the right to the bathroom I shared with my neighbors. I grabbed my brush from the little desk and brushed roughly through my long raven hair for the millionth time in the last 30 minutes. I glared at my reflection in the basin of water in the middle of the desk and tried to will myself to stop fidgeting. I glared into my dark red eyes angrily and they brought unbidden thoughts of normalcy. All of the students here might wish to be great and mighty but we all wanted to be normal too. We didn’t want to be stared at like some kind of weird fungus or to be completely avoided by people who shied away from us when we came near. I remember going on a field trip when I was 7 to see the capital of Argent, Ericastle. I had been so excited until we got there and everybody had moved smoothly out of our way trying not to stare or glare and keep their children away. When we had gone to the castle to eat lunch we had our own dining room. The king had only said the bare necessity to us, he didn’t even seem to want to look at us. The Prince had only been 8 at the time and he had actually seemed genuinely interested in us but the King practically hid him from us, almost like he was scared we would kill him with our eyes or something.


The way we were treated made me wonder why exactly people don’t like us and I still don’t have the answer to the question. The teachers hadn’t even noticed anything wrong. I looked up from the basin and shook my head angrily. Today is a happy day, don’t think about those stupid people, I thought to myself. I let my thoughts stray to the Hatchery which nobody had been allowed to see. What does the Hatchery look like? What does the Council look like? What will my dragon look like? Will a dragon hatch for me? Will I become a legend Incantato like my Grandfather? Where will I go for my first job? What will my first job be? All of the questions buzzed through my mind with ferocity and as I walked back to my room slowly I realized that this would be a big turning point in my life.


If I find a dragon, I will get to become an Incantato and go all over the world as a highly respected graduator of Bronzewind. If I don’t then I will become some guard that everybody avoids because they are afraid of my eyes and I will only get to see Argent. I squeezed my hands tightly into fists and banged them down on the desk. I felt the wood wobble and quickly pulled my hands up remembering my strength and thanked the gods that the wood is magically reinforced.

garza
October 15th, 2010, 03:29 AM
This is not a blurb. It's part of your story, or at least so it appears. A blurb is a short piece about the story, not a short piece of the story.

Beyond that I'm not qualified to comment as I know nothing about dragons.

RM Americano
October 15th, 2010, 03:47 AM
We didn’t want to be stared at like some kind of weird fungus or completely avoiding us and running away whenever we come near.

Sentence needs fixing. I'm maybe you want to say "completely avoided by people who shied away when we came near."


The king had only said hi to us and that was it, he didn’t even seem to want to look at us

This seems odd. These students are supposed to be very important to the safety of his kingdom. He should be a bit more formal.

You also might want to spell out your numbers instead.


I let my thoughts stray to the Hatchery of which nobody had been allowed to see into.
You can delete the "of" here, and the "into."


Where will I go for my first job? What will my first job be?

Quests not jobs, maybe.

I got the feel that this was being told by a young person. The tone, the voice, the nervousness before graduation.

One last thing, I'm not sure why you used no spaces in "BronzewindDragonRiderAcademy graduation day."

Grapefight
October 15th, 2010, 03:50 AM
I think you have the conflict inside-out.
You say:
"Out of my class of 30 people, 11 graduated, and most likely at least 1 will not find a dragon. I just hope that 1 person isn’t me."
It should probably be more along the lines of:
"Out of my class of 30 people, 11 graduated, and most likely only one will find a dragon. I just hope that 1 person is me."
This, of course, is assuming your protagonist DOES ultimately find a dragon. The odds need to be stacked against him to make readers give a damn about his success. Now you might be thinking that this sounds horribly formulaic: that's because it is. Judging from what you have here, you'd probably be better off just following the formula and having fun with it.
On the other hand, your actual intention might have gone completely over my head. Maybe your protagonist's actual fate is not to find a dragon, despite having incredibly favorable odds, and your story is about your protagonist's life of mediocrity and obscurity with a world of great heroes as a backdrop, in which case what you have here might be the start of a really clever subversion of the fantasy formula.
But anyway, what I'm basically saying is that for fantasy, formula is king; either obey it, or completely overthrow it. Anything in between is just sloppiness.

krissy901_830
October 15th, 2010, 02:30 PM
Thanks so much for the help and I don't know why that didn't stay spaced out when I copied it and I thought a blurb is a short part of the story. Oh well I guess was wrong and thanks with the help for the formula, I had no clue that there is one.

heartmama
October 16th, 2010, 03:55 AM
First, fantasy is not my usual genre of choice but this scene has enough in it that I to want to know what comes next. So, good job!

Now, one thing that I noticed and found a bit distracting/confusing as a reader was an apparent switch in POV. For the first part of this scene it seemed to me as though the author was speaking and it felt very informative ("this is what you need to know"). Then it seemed to abruptly switch in the last line of the second paragraph to the main character speaking to the reader (narrating his own story). Now I realize that in your mind (as the author) it probably seems like the character is speaking/narrating right from the beginning, but I didn't get that until I read your piece a second time through. Perhaps there is someway of "introducing" the character closer to the beginning in a way that makes it clear that that is who is speaking. Also, I don't know if there is a way of making all that info a little less "here's what you need to know" and maybe have it introduced a little more naturally....perhaps inserting it into the character's train of thought here for example:

"I tugged the red sleeves of the finest trainee gown I have. It is a red dress besides the black border along the gown and separating the white puffed tops of the red sleeves and the gown with its long train. I scuffed my black slippers on the ground annoyed at the sun for not coming up fast enough. Today is Bronzewind Dragon Rider Academy graduation day, the day trainees go into the Hatchery ..."

And if you could maybe sprinkle it over a bigger section of the scene instead of in one big chunk, that might help. Just my thoughts. Hope that helps!