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rawrritsmanda
May 15th, 2012, 08:49 PM
The forest was still and quiet as the huntress weaved among trees and shrubs. She didn't dare disturb the leaves or sticks on the ground. Venatrix was used to traveling silently and slowly through the woods, unlike her prey. He fled clumsily, like a coward.

Everyone feared Venatrix Nexora.

Snap! The miscreant stepped on a stick.

Venatrix spun to her left as she pulled out an arrow from her quiver and fastened it in place on the string of her silver bow. She scanned the area from where the sound came, hunting for the traitor.

The wind blew and the leaves rustled in the trees above her.

She saw him; the cape on his back blew out from behind a tree.

She pulled the string back, waiting for his next move. He bolted out from behind the tree to run, but it was too late. She released the arrow and sent it soaring through the trees until it pierced the right side of his lower back.

He cried out in pain and collapsed to his knees. Blood began to pool around the wound, dampening his clothing.

The heroine cut swiftly through the brush to reach him. As he crawled on the ground trying to escape, she stepped in front of him sealing his fate.

"Please Venatrix, don't kill me. I didn't tell them. I swear. I lied in the letter."

Venatrix looked at him with disgust. "Then what is this?"

She pulled out her knife and cut a small satchel from within his cloak. The bag slipped open and gold coins spilled out.

"How does a poor lonely drunk like you acquire so many gold coins in such a short time?" She already knew the answer.

The color in his cheeks vanished, leaving a pale face behind.

"That's what I thought. You don't deserve to live," she sneered.

Venatrix replaced her knife with her silver bow and retrieved an arrow to string. She pulled back the cord and released the shaft into his treacherous heart.

WiredNun
May 15th, 2012, 09:29 PM
First, you need paragraphs. Every paragraph should start a new thought. This is particulary true when you change point of view from one character to the other.

Second, please change to past tense. "The forest WAS still and quiet as the huntress MOVED..." etc. While a few disagree - a very few - 99% of published fiction is written in the past tense. There are some conventions that are pointless to try to fight or overturn. Why? Just for me, if I try to read something in present tense, I cannot become immersed in the story. Therefore, the reading is not pleasurable. So I simply won't buy that book. Maybe that's why.

Also, without context, this seems rather like an anti-male rant. Perhaps defocusing on the genders would help. After you tell us once, we know she's a woman and he's a man. Saying it over and over may make it seem that's your focus - a gender-based murder. You may lose all sympathy for your heroine. Unless of course she's the villain and you want to give that impression.

There are a lot of extra words that can be deleted to make it read cleaner.

Here's my rewrite of this snippet, see what you think.






The forest was still and quiet as the huntress moved between among trees and shrubs of all sizes. She didn't disturb any the leaves or sticks on the ground. Venatrix was used to moving silently and slowly through the woods, unlike her prey. He moved fled clumsily, fleeing like a coward.

Of course everyone feared going up against Venatrix Nexora.

Snap. The fool had stepped on a stick.

She spun to her left as she pulled out an arrow from her quiver and fastened it in place on the cord string of her silver bow. She scanned the area from where the sound came, searching for the traitor. The wind blowed and the leaves rustled in the trees above her.

Then She saw him; the cape on his back blew out from behind a tree. She pulled the string back, waiting for his next move.

He bolted out from behind the tree to run, but it's too late. She released the arrow and sent it flying through the between trees. until It pierced through the right side of his lower back.

He cried out in pain and fell to his knees.

She moved swiftly through the brush to reach him. The traitor crawled on the ground, still trying to escape. She walks stepped in front of him blocking his only way out and sealing his fate.

"Please, Venatrix, don't kill me. I didn't tell them. I swear. I lied in the letter." he begged.

Venatrix looked at him with disgust. "Then what is this?"

She pulled out her knife and cut a small satchel from within his cloak. The small bag slipped open and gold coins begin spilling spill out.
"How does a poor lonely drunk like you acquire so many gold coins in such a short time?" She asks even though She already knew the answer.

All the color in the man's his cheeks vanished. leaving a pale cowardice face behind.

"That's what I thought. You don't deserve to live." Venatrix replaced her knife with her silver bow and retrieved an arrow to string. She pulled back the cord and released the shaft into the his treacherous man's heart.

rawrritsmanda
May 15th, 2012, 09:41 PM
I agree with the past tense, it does sound better this way. Also, cutting out some of the wording adds some simplicity to the sentence, which I like.

Why don't you like some of the adjectives though? For example, "...released the shaft into his treacherous heart." Or "...leaving a pale cowardice face behind." Is it just too much or do you personally prefer straight to the point? I know my husband tells me I use too many descriptions some times, but I need outside opinions.

Thank you for your feedback!

Sunshine
May 15th, 2012, 10:26 PM
I like the descriptions, it depends on the person however. I personally like being able to imagine what is happening, the scene in great detail, the charature looks, ect. You, for me, get a nice balance between telling the reader that is happening and discribing what things look like and how things are done. I don't personally write to be published so I have no idea about that side of things so I might be talking nonsense here. It's just how I like things and I am, thankful, only one person.

WiredNun
May 15th, 2012, 11:44 PM
Why don't you like some of the adjectives though? For example, "...released the shaft into his treacherous heart." Or "...leaving a pale cowardice face behind." Is it just too much or do you personally prefer straight to the point? I know my husband tells me I use too many descriptions some times, but I need outside opinions.

Thank you for your feedback!

I think it's because you already said treacherous or something like it. It would be all right if it was the first time. "Cowardice" is a noun not an adjective, and I think we already got the point. Cowardly, treacherous. I start to feel insulted if the author beats me over the head with something.
Also, it's an action scene. Action scenes should have clear tough action. Every word should be well-chosen to support the action.

I'd also like to know about his cowardice and treachery. Ok, he's a thief. So was The Grey Mouser. That doesn't make him cowardly or treacherous per se. So what does?

Kenneth J. Ester
May 16th, 2012, 03:06 AM
My biggest flaw in this was the constantly starting most sentences with the same two words. She or He. This causes the reading to begin feeling more like someone just describing the story rather than telling it. It does not allow me to be drawn into the story. For instance....

She moved swiftly through the brush to reach him. The traitor crawled on the ground, still trying to escape. She stepped in front of him blocking his way out and sealing his fate.

Could be more like this...

She moved swiftly through the brush to reach the traitor, who was crawling along the ground, trying to escape. Stepping in front of him to block his way out, she sealed his fate.

As Wirednun said, paragraphs are important. I think it helps to add more to some paragraphs to make them more than one or two sentences long. If every paragraph is only a couple sentences long, that also can keep me from being drawn into the story. Sometimes it is best to add more for no other reason than to give the reading a smoother flow and allow the story to seep in more.

She moved swiftly through the brush to reach the traitor. By the way he was struggling to crawl along the ground, it was obvious he was still hoping to escape. It was a valiant effort. It was a futile effort. Stepping in front of him to block his way, she sealed his fate.

rawrritsmanda
May 16th, 2012, 04:34 AM
You're right, it does sound better switching the he/shes around like that. I also do need more content in this story. I really just wrote it the other day at work and didn't plan on doing anything with it. I like the idea of having a strong character like this but I'm till working out ideas. Thanks!

rawrritsmanda
May 16th, 2012, 09:56 PM
Read the new version! The Werewolf Huntress.

MrGodlock
May 17th, 2012, 06:53 AM
This is very good. I'm glad to see how well and how quickly you are improving. You are already a good writer and I know that with a bit more time, practice and effort, you will be quite the brilliant novelist. I'm looking forward to reading more of your stories and watching as you progress.

The Jaded
May 18th, 2012, 12:27 AM
My one suggestion on this that hasn't been mentioned is that it's not ideal form to explicitly tell the reader who the hero or heroine is in so many words - you can lead a reader to a conclusion, but it's generally good to let them make it on their own rather than forcing it on them. The practical upshot of this for you is merely rephrasing the part where you call Venatrix "the heroine." Let the reader come to that conclusion, if you're doing your job (and as far as I can tell you are) you don't usually need to tell your audience how to interpret things.

Edit: Wow, I should read threads in the reverse direction once in a while. I see someone already made my comment on a newer version of this piece, so you may feel free to ignore me. The improvement between the two is significant, good job.

Red
May 24th, 2012, 06:58 AM
Alrighty, my first post. For whatever reason, your title caught my eye, so here I am.
The intro caught my attention and made me curious about what the heck is going on, so that's good. But it mostly confused me due to the lack of information. You gave detailed descriptions to objects, like her silver bow, or how you added "He fled clumsily, like a coward." rather than a simple "He fled." Good, but I couldn't picture the characters running through the trees as much as I'd wanted to. Without better descriptions of them, it's like getting bits and pieces of the intro are missing and causes me to re-read sentences, wondering if I missed something that will help me figure out what's going on. But other than that, you've got action, mystery, and a girl who knows how to use a bow, so thumbs up for that. Like above posts have mentioned, I agree with them. Example: paragraphs will majorly help. I'm going to go check out your re-written version: The Werewolf Huntress now.