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Cato
July 14th, 2015, 06:29 AM
It was a beautiful city, fresh and clear. A stone city, tall and strong; every building finely carved and sculpted, each a work of art in its own right. The inhabitants of this fair and happy city where no less so; the sounds of life and laughter filled the crowded streets. Every corner and pathway was stuffed with people, singing and dancing, eating or smoking, you had to really look to find someone who was working, and they were almost certainly slacking off. The stone towers which filled the skyline were brightly coloured in all manner of flags and signs. The great canals, which gave the city its more common name, The Canal City, were filled with a crystal blue water, as overhanging trees and huge buildings shaded them. It was not strange to find children and even adults swimming and playing in the refreshing water. All kinds of arches and bridges, fantastically designed ran over these canals, people sat, legs dangling over into the water, fishing and chatting.

Here lay Timberlic, a rough faced slim bearded fellow. As a youth Timberlic was fond of little else but smoking flax and fishing. Now as a Musician and a grown man he had reluctantly given up his bad habits. As a member of the Musicians Order, a masonic order which controlled the city of Gaia, he was as respected individual, not perfect or wise, Timberlic was a more relaxed Musician, who rejected the more extreme abstinence that some of his order followed. Timberlic was a man looking to relax and enjoy himself, not that he was completely free from the influence of his fellow Musicians, because now his idea of fun was writing his own commentary on favourite authors or rereading favourite books. True to be told, this wiser and quieter Timberlic was a vast improvement on the lazy joker than his younger self-had been. Under a large peach tree which over hung the intercity canals, Timberlic lay splayed, grapes in hand, lost in The Nature of the Gods by Cicero. He was rereading this book, because he strongly believed one should never read a book for the first time in such an enjoyable distractible environment. Just as the book reached its most complex and strung out, Timberlicís staff, which lay lose at his feet was snatched from where it was resting. This young thief, if we could even call him a thief as he meant no harm, turned quickly to the cannelís edge and tossed the staff over into the water shouting. It seemed he was just trying to get a friendís attention who was sailing down the canal. Timberlic shrugged, slowly getting to his feet; the book was getting heavy and he was happy for the distraction. Leaving his book and bag in the hands of two older ladies, who were resting under the same tree and were playing a rather avid game of cards, he walked over to the canal edge and leaned over the stone wall joining the young man who had thrown away his staff.

bunnybun
July 15th, 2015, 02:06 PM
Hi,

It's quite good, your story flows well and I could picture your city. There are a few orthographical mistakes, like where instead of were at the beginning. Nothing major. The only part that bothered me a little was this one: "As a member of the Musicians Order, a masonic order which controlled the city of Gaia, he was as respected individual, not perfect or wise, Timberlic was a more relaxed Musician, who rejected the more extreme abstinence that some of his order followed. Timberlic was a man looking to relax and enjoy himself, not that he was completely free from the influence of his fellow Musicians, because now his idea of fun was writing his own commentary on favourite authors or rereading favourite books."

I find this sentence somewhat clumsy and a bit redundant. You say he was a relaxed Musician and then later you say again that he was looking to relax and enjoy himself. Also, favourite authors followed by favourite books, I just feel like you could try to replace one of the favourite.


OK that's just me. But I find it weird a city where nobody works seriously. Is it some kind of paradise, lol?

Anyway,hope my comments help.

AtleanWordsmith
July 16th, 2015, 06:54 AM
As bunny said, there's quite a bit of cleaning up to do. Paragraphs can be broken up into more manageable chunks, and there are plenty of places where your sentences could be combined to give the same information in a smoother fashion.

The flow's a bit clumsy, and I find you backtracking to add in extra bits and pieces, which gets tedious after awhile. It makes it difficult to go back and find a particular place in the narrative.

Here's an example or what I mean:

Timberlic lay sprawled in the shadow of a large peach tree by the canal, lost once more in the pages of The Nature of the Gods. As a member of the Musician's Order which controlled the city, he'd given up a few of his youthful vices, though his peers had helped him to find others. He had grown fond of re-reading books and writing his own commentary for his favorite authors. Though he knew he had a great way to go before he was perfect or wise, he knew that he had at the very least become respectable.

[Next paragraph detailing Timberlic's beliefs on re-reading books, possibly more information on the Musician's Order]

[Next paragraph detailing incident with staff]

[Et cetera]

All in all, I'd be interested to see where you plan on going with this. Work on your flow, especially with the backtracking--I can't speak for other readers, but I personally find it distracting.

Hope this helps, and keep on trucking!

ShadowEyes
July 16th, 2015, 07:30 AM
You've got a great eye for detail and realism. I'm sure you could turn any fantastical element into a believable reality. It's charming, really. However, I think, with this little bit, it's too charming. There's no conflict, which you seem to admit... This confuses some points of the description. For instance, why would he be a trickster in his youth? Why do musicians fast? Why are canals, into which people throw things indiscriminately, safe to swim in and drink? These are just setting details, but I'm also confused why this seems to be a fantasy world and contain real-world books and Freemasons.

These kind of things are important for me to know because they establish whether or not I take the story seriously. If you want it to be humorous, like Discworld, then that's something else. But if you want a serious fantasy story, then these elements ought to be consistent. Also, there's not much conflict, and I wish there was because I really enjoyed the slight conflict you have here. It cut off before Timberlic could do anything. If everyone is relaxed, then isn't he just ordinary? Contrary to this, I hope for life-or-death situations. I hope for tough choices. I hope for tenseness to clash with the pleasantness you've shown. And I hope all of these things because you've done such a good job. Thanks.

Arthur G. Mustard
August 7th, 2015, 11:23 AM
You have a wonderful imagination and your piece certainly conjured up an image in my mind.
I have to agree with some of the feedback already given; it needs breaking down in to smaller paragraphs and tidying up in places.
I enjoy good descriptive work, but try not to say, or fit in, too much too soon. Keep the reader wanting more.
Maybe you could move to some action or unusual event taking place within the city or throw in some "pacey" dialogue to complement the description.

Bard_Daniel
January 12th, 2016, 12:15 AM
I'm echoing AtleanWordsmith's comments on this one. You need to do some polishing up to make the pace level and flowing. That should make the piece much stronger.

Hope this helps!