View Full Version : Opening to a fantasy story

March 31st, 2013, 02:40 AM
He closed his eyes briefly, to see the sleek, dusky face peer out at him from that veil of long, golden hair. His body twitched slightly. There was little he loved more than combat and physical exercise, the pitting of his pain, his anger and his will against fatigue-ravaged muscles. He held a little contempt for those who saw the art of swordsplay and the forging of the body as nothing more than a means to curry a woman’s favor. Yet, for reasons he could not articulate or understand, the thought of her stoked some sort of battle fury within him. He’d heard someone once describe another woman as the sort that “sent men scrambling in search of dragons to slay for her.”

He didn’t know if Maleekah was that sort of woman. He didn’t know if he loved the dark elf or if he even knew how to love. Yet, on the occasions that songs of love did stir him, he was stirred with thoughts of her.

With a grunt, Noriack pulled the sleeveless chainmail shirt down over his chest and down toward his waist. The real challenge was his stomach, lined with veins, over which his green skin was stretched taut. Though his chest was wide and jutting, his stomach protruded out past it. He’d heard it likened to a bundle of rocks stuffed into too small a bag, or a turtle’s shell. And of course, to the belly of a pregnant woman. It was a belly full of muscle and void of fat, but apparently women perfered a stomach that was flat and pretty rather than one large and powerful. Though he had to admit that his belly was unusually large, even given its strength. He couldn’t fault those who never saw him without his shirt for thinking it was it derived its girth from too much time spent at the tavern rather than a lifetime of training.

A final jerk and the shirt finally came over. He slung his bastard sword into its sheath and then picked up his horned helmet. Over its silver mouthpiece was a emerald visor which, through some strange craftmanship, the wearer could see out from as if looking through his own eyes. He looked at the helmet for a moment.
Since he was a child, masks had fascniated him. And so of course, he had delighted in the fact that the mouthpiece and visor left the face of whoever wore the helmet completely concealed. With his face completely hidden, he was no longer one whose features were rough and savage for a human and soft and effeminite for an orc. He was suddenly in line with the heroes of legend, suddenly limited by nothing other than his own actions and choices. He wasn’t really sure if the heroes of legend wore such masks or not, though he knew that Rom, at least, did. But in his imagination they certainly did.

He fitted the helmet over his face. Goodbye, Noriack. Hello, hero.

He bolted from the armory, towards the fading horizon.

March 31st, 2013, 11:32 AM
This comes close to being good, but a lengthy description of your character doesn't make for a riveting opening. Yes. There are plenty of questions raised. No. I don't feel particularly compelled to read on.

March 31st, 2013, 01:06 PM
I found this piece vivid, descriptive, and coherent. Orcs need more love in literature. Since this serves as an intro, I do understand the lack of dialogue.
If you wouldn't mind me editing the last part, I'd rather see it as...

From the moment Noriack fitted the helmet over his face, he was no longer himself. He was now a hero.

But that's just me.

I would like to see where this piece goes to, so keep on writing.

April 1st, 2013, 03:34 AM
I think maybe I didn't leave it clear enough that in the first sentence, Noriack is closing his eyes and seeing an image of the woman who is on his mind. So its a description of her, rather than of him.

Thank you for the feedback!

April 2nd, 2013, 01:40 AM
A very descriptive and interesting beginning. I felt that although very detailed and enjoyable, it was a bit disjointed and found myself having to re-read sentences to follow. I agree with the above post, that the "hello hero" doesn't read well, consider re-phrasing as suggested.
But I was interested with the perspective you chose of the emotions of an orc. Great idea.

April 7th, 2013, 04:37 AM
I like it. It's very hooking.

I am personally working on a book, and it's a bit like post-apocalyptic for the elven race. Which is a race of Peace and solitude, but what makes it apocalyptic is that Humans came into their land like bugs, and of course as Humans we love to wreck stuff.

He fitted the helmet over his face. Goodbye, Noriack. Hello, hero.
I love that.^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Great work keep it up

April 12th, 2013, 08:57 AM
This was good, the descriptive work was nice, though there was a little too much attention paid to his stomach, I would shorten that just a little, but other than that single complaint it was good, I'd like to read more.

April 13th, 2013, 07:07 AM
Giving a sort of humanization to an Orc is interesting. It feels cinematic by nature. It's hard to keep that kind of description going, but if you can, I will be impressed.

April 15th, 2013, 03:16 PM
Not going to do a full critique (might later), as there is only one thing I want to say right now about this.

You started with the word 'he'. This is an incredible step up from the generic fantasy opening, and you should be proud of it.

April 16th, 2013, 06:03 PM
I also like the descriptive nature, something that I have to remember to work on. The background as to when, why and where Noriack met and knew Maleekah. Yes, the orc perspective is unusual, I like that as well. Nice intro to keep interest as well.

April 16th, 2013, 06:44 PM
Not going to do a full critique (might later), as there is only one thing I want to say right now about this.

You started with the word 'he'. This is an incredible step up from the generic fantasy opening, and you should be proud of it.

Maybe look at his paragraphs throughout? "He" this, and "He" that... I'm 100% sure that this is my opinion, but I've always tried to avoid pronouns starting a paragraph because it seems wrong.

The intro isn't appealing as an intro to the story. Perhaps a second chapter, or a subsection of a chapter, but it's not drawing me onward. Sometimes it's best to ask the better question - "here's my writing, how would you intro this?" if you don't know the best way to introduce a story. It's good to get feedback.