View Full Version : A Crisis in Tethyra | Part 1 of "The Awakening" (425 words)

Apex Predator
August 2nd, 2015, 04:04 AM
[This is the first part of my opening to my fantasy adventure story A Crisis in Tethyra. The opening chapter I have named "The Awakening", hopefully you will all enjoy it.]


A rising Blue Moon in the east signaled the end of yet another frenzied day throughout the Tethyran Seas.

Throughout the many homes and huts of humans; fathers finished up a hard days work, mothers sang lullabies to their darling little angels, whilst children trekked away to the place where dreams are wrought. Mermaids nestled together away from the hungry eyes of Naiads, whilst the Naiad began a good nights rest from hunting Mermaids. In the eastern cays, the Chithilys sang and danced until their scales were bruised and sore. While in the lonely ocean gloom, Gustav, the last great sea monster of his kind slumbered away near ocean surface.

In the muggy Pangraad jungles, a pack of Ongah traversed the gloomy foliage of their island home. They had had seen the Blue Moon as blessing from their gods, and as with their custom, sought to offer gratitude by giving onto them the quarry of their recent hunt. Pressing on as hard as their hardy ape-like bodies could give. They made their way unto the slopes of the mighty brimstone mountain, whose foundations rumbled and fumed from the fires deep below the earth, to cast their hefty bounty into the mountains’ lake of fire - The Pyre of Gods.

In Yuthaia, on the Latedi Island, an Aederyn apprentice fumbled frantically across a candle-lit observatory. A Blue Moon was a rare event above Tethyran Seas. Arising only every fifteen years, this eager maiden sought to make the most of it. In accordance with her studies, she catalogued it the very best she could: size, dimension, direction, and luminosity she wrote. She refused to wait another fifteen years to lay her eyes upon its mystic glow. Her feathers flared and her body quivered with awe, she only wished her kindred sisters were awake to behold a marvelous celestial sight.

Meanwhile, deep in The Murharob within the city of Nahret, a reclusive queen was utilizing the rare heavenly event to enhance her nightly ritual: a bath in human blood. Within a golden tub, her eunuch servants had brought a dozen slave girls to have their throats slit and their blood freshly drained. In a most elegant fashion, the Muharob queen would gracefully enter the tub and slowly caress her fair-skinned naked body with the still warm women’s blood. Amidst the frantic pleas for mercy and gasping victims, she would sometimes lap the reddish substance whilst her servants played away on flutes and lyres for her evening comfort. She feared nothing whilst everything feared her.

August 2nd, 2015, 05:25 AM
There's a little too much going on here. You write well, descriptive, place your commas properly, nice imagery but right now you've flopped between everything in your world. All your creatures, races, kinds, humoniods, species, everything. Your lands, water, the blue. I think, to make this exceptional, and not throw us out with the constant shifting through lands, you should focus on the MC, or an individual who'll play a crucial part in the piece.

The first paragraph serves no purpose really other than introducing us to your world. The other ones actually enter into the characters, which is good, but too much. With the constant shifting, our mind can't get used to the wording, and names because they keep changing. Meaning you're overloading us.

Anyway, some fixes:

throughout the Tethyran Seas.

Throughout the many homes --- kinda bugged me they were so close together. As well as using gloomy/gloom twice to describe a place.

They had had seen --- delete a had

Blue Moon as blessing from their gods --- as a blessing

My favorite character is the girl. She's cool, and you write so poetically sometimes. It flow nicely.

The vampire reminds me of Elizabeth, is that her name? Who would do that to her maidens. I'm sure that's where you got it from because it's practically a dead on mimic. She wanted to say young and beautiful so she'd bathe in maidens' blood. I was into vampire during middle school and searched far and wide for everything related to them. She came up, some noble or something.

August 2nd, 2015, 05:38 AM
Riptide raises a good point. If you're going to focus on several characters at once, it's generally a good idea to devote more time to each of them in turn. I generally use chapters as breaks if I'm going to be switching POV, but I've seen other authors use breaks to good effect, as well.

I know that world-building is tricky, especially if you're introducing readers to a new world of your own creation, but unless it's going to directly affect a character's situation, it's better to drop world-building through context clues or small details. Otherwise, you risk losing your reader's attention.

You've got a good concept going here, though. Work on your pacing and give your characters some more space to introduce themselves to the audience. You don't have to tell your readers about each one of them at the very beginning. In fact, switching POV can be a great tactic to keep a reader engaged.

Hope this helps, and keep on trucking! Like I said, you've got a good thing going.

Apex Predator
August 2nd, 2015, 06:58 PM
Though I am thankful for the kind words, I fully understand what it is that I am doing wrong.

Perhaps latter in the day I will expend upon actions of the three creatures: Ongahs, the Aederyn maiden, and the vampire-like queen. I guess I'll try to "slow down" my writing.

Furthermore, I'll reference my thesaurus for a broader spectrum of descriptive words. Thank you also for saying it sounds poetic, I've always that one is to write prose, one should strive to find both the best, yet the fewest words to say the most - as with good poetry.

Thank you for the words of wisdom.

In my original draft, this opening consisted of alternating back and forth between this main characters. However, with you critique, I think now it would be wiser to just combine them all together as opposed to alternating in a very staccato fashion.

I was trying to illustrate that the Blood Moon has a unique significance to these various creatures, however, this particular Blood Moon and an unusual atmospheric phenomena which will quickly follow, will be a factor for the stories main character.

As always, Thank you kindly for the feed back.

August 3rd, 2015, 02:04 PM
Here's what I think, in connection to the other comments on this post. You do write very well, the imagery is good, and your use of language mechanics is decent. As the beginning of a story, however, I would not turn the page. That's a problem for you as a writer, and a let down for me as a reader. It feels like cut scenes from the old school Justice League cartoon ("Meanwhile, back in the batcave"). I agree with Wordsmith. give your MCs a full chapter if this Blue Moon is that important to the story; if it's not, then ditch it.

The best advice I can give you is keep writing your story. If you haven't gotten the whole thing down yet, do that first. This will give your earlier work (i.e. the beginning) time to settle for a bit. After the entire story is down, go back and do your editing. You'll find that there are parts that you naturally want to change, and beginnings are critical.

I'm not sure where you are in your process, but I hope you find this helpful.

Thanks for posting!

Arthur G. Mustard
August 7th, 2015, 11:44 AM
I quite enjoyed the opening. There's so much going on with this wonderful world you have created, it hit me like a juggernaut out of control.
It's a bit marmite, you either like it or you don't and I'm the former.
I'd keep with the format, maybe take out a little here and there, just so the reader can adjust to all the "new names", and I'd put your first sentence last. It's a bit full stop, saying that's it, I'm here and this is my world.
The only problem is that you need to keep going and draw your reader in to this massive world you have in your head.
Maybe intoduce a couple of central characters and work on that, or have simultaneously stories running which merge as one. Good luck.