View Full Version : Name Suggestions? First Devoted Writing

December 8th, 2016, 03:38 AM
Quick Note- After looking at the critiques and thinking about the direction my story was going to take, I've made some huge changes, mostly because before these changes I had just been winging it with the attempt to polish it over time. It's still steampunk, just with more plausible vehicles, and if a zeppelin does appear, I've done my research and come up with ways to make it a lot more of a better choice in combat.

"Pozitsiya dostignuta, sukhoputnyye voyska?" Position reached, ground troops? ​The Russian pilot said, speaking into headset. He and his crew were currently flying ten thousand feet in the sky aboard a Boeing B-17, which had been found deep beneath the sand that is now North America, along with the ruins of what must of been a museum. It had taken a while to repair the ship and replace the engine with a functioning steam engine but in the end, it had been worth it. A response sounded back, "Uzhe v polozhenii, ozhidaya vashego signala" Already in position, waiting for your signal" Below them, was their target, an enemy to their cause, an enemy to freedom. The capital of England, London. The base of operations of the United Empires. "Hex budet preobladat " Hex will prevail. The pilot said as he nodded to his co-pilot, around them could be seen multiple Bolkhovitinov DB-As. As the B-17, painted in Russian colors, let loose its payload, the DB-As let loose theirs as well. The night raid by Hex on the United Empires home base had begun.

Garret had just parked his car when it happened, a brown 3174 sunbeam Talbot 2 liter saloon. It was, like most things in this world, not only based on an extremely old design but also ran off of steam. While it looked more or less like a 1939 sunbeam, it had multiple pipes running along the outside and had two exhaust pipes on the left and right sides of the front of the car. He was returning home from his nightly swordplay lessons, It was mandatory that every male over 20 learned swordplay in case more ground troops were needed, and was unlocking his door when he heard a whistling sound with an increasingly lower pitch. He walked to his car and looked up, a second before a black object slammed into the house across the street, instantly followed by a deafening explosion that lit up the neighborhood. Garret was thrown off his feet and onto the steps of his home, he hit his head against the steps and his vision was blocked by black dots. He could hear move explosions around him over the ringing in his ears, followed by constant screams and shouts. He blinked away the dots and looked around, the explosions were more distant now but could still be heard. Around him buildings were destroyed, his house and the ones next to it were moderately damaged, but not as bad as the collapsed and annihilated buildings around him. In front of him, his car was tipped over on its side and was horribly scratched and burnt but had protected Garret from most of the explosions and debris, the smell of smoke, burning flesh, and ash was overpowering, causing Garret to cough and gag while his eyes watered. He stood while pieces of debris rolled off, he almost fell over once he had stood, he did not have his bearings with him yet. He could hear a child cry, multiple screams, and a shout drawing near, "Hey! Hey, you!" a man ran up to Garret, grabbing him by the shoulder. The man was in crimson and black fatigues and was gripping the hilt of his sheathed saber, "Come with me! We're evacuating the neighborhood!"

"W-What?" Garret stuttered, still dazed and confused.

The United Empires soldier grabbed Garret by the arm and led him down the street, two other soldiers had shown up, "I'm taking this one to the shelter, check for any survivors here and then get to the rendezvous point!" The first soldier said, the other two jogged down the street, checking the rubble of the decimated homes. Garret looked up, above them a battle was being fought in the night skies. Garret could see the flashes of gun fire and flaming planes falling from the sky. An enemy Bomber plummeted from the sky in the far distance, the Royal Air Force was pushing back the invaders, but at what cost? Every plane shot down resulted in another crash in the city, more casualties and damage. Eventually they came across a six foot by six foot steel plate embedded in one of the corners of the neighborhood block, The soldier knelt down, produced a crimson cylinder from his pocket, and slid it into a circular hole in the middle of the steel plate. It slid open and a long set of stairs were revealed, multiple other steel plates could also be seen opening every few feet down the staircase, The staircase went down to at least one hundred feet. The soldier turned to Garret, "You can walk on your own now, right?" The soldier asked.

"Yeah, I'm fine now" Garret responded. The soldier nodded and began to descent the staircase, Garret followed. They reached the bottom of the dreaded steps and a head of them was a steel bulkhead door, The soldier slid his cylinder shaped key in the circular hole in the middle and it slid open. Inside there were about twelve other people, excluding the four soldiers, one of them holding a pistol. The soldier that had escorted Garret nodded, "Two more are coming back with survivors" the first soldier said, who had escorted Garret, to the other four. The one with the pistol shook his head, "No can do. The one you brought is the last one, Field Marshal's orders."

"The Field Marshal? I thought he left us in General Jacob's command?" The first soldier asked

"He did, But he had a change of plans. Field Marshal out ranks Jacob, You know this." The one with the pistol said, nodding towards the other three who left the room and headed up the stairs, "Get to rendezvous, the army is to pull out."

"But what about the survivors on the surface? We cant just leave them,"

"Except we can and we will, Lets go" The one with the pistol said, jogging up the stairs. The first soldier looked at the group of now sheltered survivors before turning and following, the bulkhead door closing behind him and leaving Garret and the other twelve strangers in the dimly lit room.

Quick Note- I want to get this all polished up before I start a second chapter. when it gets to the point where it's bearable, then I'll do a second chapter and repeat the process of editing on that. Where would I post a second chapter anyways? Please answer that question after critiquing this writing.

December 8th, 2016, 03:58 AM
Basic Netiquette Note: It is the responsibility of the OP to make sure that their formatting is up to par. It is not the job of the forum to proofread and/or edit a wall of text. If you want viable feedback, please take the extra time to make sure we can read your submission. Wall-o-text makes that nearly impossible, format obscuring the content.

It is like trying to read a crossword puzzle, lots of interesting tidbits, but after a while your eyes start to hurt. Seriously consider reformatting so the forum can understand the post. Your writing deserves due diligence. Slow down, proofread, and use the go advanced button located on the bottom right of your quick reply box. If you take care to showcase your writing as it deserves, others usually respond with similar care, but if you rush and just plop a blob on a screen, well...We are not paid copy editors. First impressions matter.

- Darkkin, the Tedious

Edit: Thank you, better. :thumbl:


“Refuel! Starboard side! You need to prune, savagely. Also look at the context of refuel. You reference projectiles further on, so do you mean refuel or reload? This is the heat of battle. Lighten the lines. Make sure with your conversations, new person, new line. Not a brick of text. And consider how military personnel sound when in the midst of battle. They don't mess with extraneous detail. The United Empire's closing! Flagship within range!” An officer shouted.

What works here, you have the reader's attention. Keep it. Conversation in battle is rapid and minimal. You have good bones, go back in and take another look at your format. Show the reader where the edges are. Orders, updates, these should flow like a well oiled machine. And beware the information dump. Your story elements should work together, not compete for the reader's attention. Consider instead of jumping directly into battle orders, allowing the reader a glimpse of critical elements.

e.g. War, its cost too much to bear, the UE determined to snuff out all remaining resistence, justice done in the name of the greater good. The good of the Empire, not us...We are the last, the lost. We are Tungstens' Steel.

Give the reader touchstones for key terms, critical places. Don't overwhlem them, but provide enough information to navigate.

December 8th, 2016, 11:14 AM
Hi, Holvin. Formatting is an issue here as our system doesn't account for paragraph spacing or indentations. Your best bet is to double space between paragraphs so they separate right. The system also isn't formatted for indentations so paragraphs/ sentences will always start like this post did, but double spacing between paragraphs should keep them separated properly. :D

December 10th, 2016, 10:52 PM
Hi there HoviniRossi.

I agree that you really do have to format the piece before posting it up. You are not likely to get many replies if you do not and can you expect a reader to be interested in your story if they cannot easily follow what is happening?

Just a thought.

December 11th, 2016, 07:24 AM
Alrite, lemme take a stab at this.

A foreman shouted to the officer as he took the place of a weakening worker, “Steam low! We've got to abandon shi-”
First of all, you can't just abandon a zeppelin, you go down with it or you jump out a window. Zeppelins had little to zero escape routes on them, meaning you were stuck on it until it hits the ground. Then you need to contend with a flipping hydrogen fire. I realize that it is 3070 and there could be some sort of escape pod or parachutes but really, it's highly improbable you can even have parachutes on a zeppelin since the doors were not capable to open at such attitudes that they flew at. Also think about it here: Would you really want to jump out with what is basically a silk blanket into a hydrogen fire? I would rather go down with the ship and count my blessings.

Also, another question here is: Why use a zeppelin? Is this some sort of alternate history where Zeppelins were not monumentally panned as combat vehicles? Zeppelins are notorious for being terrible in any sort of combat. Yes, they were used for bombings by the Germans in WWI, but the Germans fazed them out by the end of 1916 due to the fact they were flying a giant balloon full of HIGHLY FLAMMABLE GAS into British explosive anti-air craft fire. Also, most zeppelins could be taken out really easily, one shot to the hydrogen gas and your no longer flying a balloon. Again, I realize that this is far far far in the future, but you clearly say that we have some sort of combustible (Which you call Letherum) that actually brings me into my next point

Let's talk about Letherum:
Dude, we need to have a complete discussion about letherum. Why do you call it letherum, when your characters still use leather? Why? Call it something else! Not something that is so similar to leather. Also, how does this thing "material" down a zeppelin? You say this: What really took the zeppelin down was the Letherum catching fire but you never explain how this occurs. It was the letherum, not the hydrogen that took the Hex Rebellion down? How? How does a leather like substance that acts like steel possibly burn? I don't know if you've ever seen real leather "burn" but, real 100% leather does not burn, it singes with zero flames. So if this leather like material (who has the strength of steel) somehow burns means that it is not like leather at all. It must be a mixture of some sort of polymer, a plastic maybe or something flammable. But, if the only description we get of "letherum" is that it is leather like with the strength of steel (aka no mention of a mixture) that means that there could be no fire and the zeppelin would still be trucking onto to North America.

So, we've basically debunked letherum as a substance. It's not like leather, it may look like leather, but it's not true leather. This is actually pegging my brain. How can you have a material that is basically a mix of leather and steel, but it burns? Neither leather nor steel burns. WHY WOULD THERE BE A MATERIAL THAT ENCOMPASSES TWO NON FLAMMABLE THINGS POSSIBLY BURN? WHO DESIGNED THIS? It's such a design flaw. Not to mention, why would your characters possibly wear this. It's 3070, why are they wearing a flammable material on their bodies where they could get hit, and it could set ablaze (on a freaking zeppelin no less)? You remember they are on zeppelins, giant balloons filled with flammable hydrogen gas. Smart. Most zeppelin operators wore some sort of fire retardants, just in case of a fire they would only get minor burns. I know, I know, not everyone would be wearing fire retardants but really. You really shouldn't wear any sort of flammable fabric in a boiler room, or you'll end up like the foreman.

Also, it's letherum this, letherum that. Everything is letherum. I realize that it is a great substance, (even if it is structurally flawed) but we have to have some diversity here. Spice it up, don't just rely on letherum, create another substance or fabric that can take the place of letherum. It's all about letherum. It's annoying that you're fringing your story on a flawed material.

Brigadier General Eisenhower wishes to see you at the bridge.” Ryan said as he came to a stop
Why is Eisenhower a Brigadier General? And not a Rear Admiral? Also, why is Garrett a Colonel and not a Captain? I mean I assume your going for Air Force ranks, and you need Eisenhower to rank higher than Garrett but under what I know about future ships (which admittedly, is iffy) future air ships are akin to the Navy, not the Air Force. Yes, the German zeppelins were "technically" under the control of the Air Force, (there were also Navy Airships) but under the conditions of 3070, and the way that these Zeppelins are fighting, broad side bombardments, hydrogen shots, and perusing their enemies (which zeppelins cannot do) It would be better to make the ranks Navy, rather than Air Force. I know, it's weird but under current precedent (Star Wars for example, their commanders are called Admirals, not Brigadier Generals) It would be easier to make Eisenhower a Rear Admiral, (which is equal to a Brigadier General in rank). Same with Garrett who should be a Captain not a Colonel.

Garret nodded, “Report, How is the damage to The Colossus? I noticed one of their Mosquitoes came close, those rapid fire guns can be quite dangerous.”
I laughed at this line. You describe this guy, Garret, as a total badass, and you give him this line. This line. Jesus Christ.

Make him tough dammit. Make him gruff, "Ryan, damage report." That's all you need, this is a ZEPPELIN BATTLE. This is supposed to be intense, high flying adrenaline pumping action. Do NOT weigh it down with this crappy dialogue, give Edwards some character, some badassery to him. He looks like a badass, shouldn't he sound like a badass?

“We didn’t take a single hit, and I doubt the Hex could even hit the broadside of The Leviathan.”
I thought this thing was called The Colossus? This is the only use of "Leviathan" in the entire story. Was this a late change? Because I know the Leviathan is cliché but man the Leviathan is a way better name for a zeppelin than The Colossus. The Colossus is as subtle as a brick to the head. It's a big zeppelin, we get it. "The Leviathan" makes it sound way more domineering and ominous. I suggest a name change.

The flagship was enormous, the hull itself is modeled after the battleships from the old days, when they fought in the sea rather than in the air, although much bigger than the battleships.
This adds to my idea that the ranks should be Navy, not Air Force but also, I have a question here. Is "The Colossus" a battleship? Like a boat? In the sky? I thought it was a zeppelin like the "Hex Rebellion" Guess not.

It is one mile front to back and one hundred and sixty feet port-side to starboard side, The Letherum above was three times the length and two times the width.
Sweet Jesus man. This thing is a mile long while only being 160 feet port to starboard? You know that is a 33:1 ratio?

Let's take the RMS Titanic for example here. It's dimensions were 882 ft long, 92 ft beam wide. Your beam length (width) is only 160 ft. The Titanic had around half of your "battleships" beam width with 92 ft. With 16% of the length of the the Colossus, at 882 ft long. The Colussus's ratio to the Titanic in length is 6:1, while it's ratio to its width is only 2:1. Also, the RMS Titanic had an overall ratio of 9:1 not even close to 33:1

You need to make the beam width WAY wider for this thing to feasibly even work. Something so slim, won't really be able to fly.

Also this letherum, is 3 miles long, and only 320 ft wide? That's also pretty impossible man.

Old Days, Old Days, and History.
Boy oh boy. I know that this is based off of the old days. And that history was lost. I DO NOT need to be told that everything that was made in this story was made from the OLD DAYS of 1800 darn it. It's just annoying. The ships are old, the zeppelins are old, the cannons are old, the guns are old, the dress is old. EVERYTHING is old. We get it. Just trim this up please.

Telling, not showing.
You tell me all about this. But you show me nothing. You tell me the description of The Colossus, you tell me the description of the Cannons, you tell me the description of Garrett. But I have no feel of the world, these descriptions do nothing if I can't picture the ship in my mind. It makes no sense to tell me this when I can't picture it. Show me more, use the senses to describe The Colossus.

“Colonel Dwight, are you aware of the location this flagship currently finds itself above?” Eisenhower asked, turning from the window to face Garret. “Yes sir, below us are the ruins of the Eastern Continent which use to house South America, Mexico, North America, and Canada.
Are you seriously telling me a mile long ship, that is a couple of thousand of in the air can hover above both South AND North America?

Panama alone is 28,640 sq miles. This is impossible, let alone insane. You can't hover above two conjoined continents in a mile long flying ship, and don't tell me that they fused or something, the tectonic plates don't move that fast.

Also, apparently Garrett doesn't know his history, because the definition of "North America" encompasses the Unite States, CANADA, and MEXICO. Essentially, he named Mexico and Canada twice. How'd this guy even become a Colonel in the first place with dialogue like this?

It was destroyed when the Hex uprising first began, when it became the base of operations of Hex. The survivors made it to England, which had been weakened by its separation, and took control by recruiting the general populace. They then took control of the rest of Northern and Western Europe.”
What an exposition dump man. I'm definitely not a fan of exposition unless it is paced out throughout the passage. Here though, I get a full run down of the rebellion in around two lines of throw away dialogue. England separated (why? We don't know. Apparently Scotland didn't like the English kicking their butt in football every year so they seceded.) The General populace helped the Hex for whatever reason, (why? We don't know. They must have had decent medical benefits.) And these guys, (who got bombed out of North and South America mind you) used the 41 million able soldiers (not even really it's 15-64 so cut around 10 million) to take over EAST AND WEST EUROPE. Who, mind you, have a population of 678.9 MILLION people. Yea, Good Luck with that. You're out numbered almost 10 to 1 it wouldn't work!

“You know your history quite well, my boy. A shame that the late 1800s and all history before that was lost during our constant battling with the Hex. Do you know why I have called you here?”
What is this line? It's a total pivot. And you leave a cliff hanger by saying their history was lost. How? How? HOW!? Did a library get burned, was it bombed? Did they burn books Fahrenheit 451 style? Also, why the 1800s? Were they to lazy to destroy the 1900s? It's confusing.

But what is weird is the pivot. Your dialogue is very stilted they all speak perfect English, but they hit some problems in the delivery. No human being goes from history to asking "do you know why I called you here?" it's wrong, the delivery is chopping, stilted, and awkward. I suggest changing this whole line, give it some more spunk, more feeling of a real military leader. If your going to give me exposition through dialogue, give me the whole thing, don't leave me hanging like you did here.

“I plan on giving you your own fleet. You have served me and the United Empires well for seven years now, once we return to Australia I will begin the preparations.”
How does a Brigadier General have he authority to give a Colonel (the Rank LITERALLY below him) a flipping fleet? That is a Admiral/General decision. Not a Brigadier General's at all. He would have zero authority to give a one rank below him a fleet just saying.

Also, they're Australian? You know the Aussies do not have Brigadier Generals in their ranks right? They have Brigadiers. In the Army. You're using Army ranks in a Navy situation here, it's incorrect in the context.

On top of that, in the Australian forces, the Colonel rank is for the Army only. The Navy has Captains, not Colonels. So Garrett shouldn't be on The Colossus, he should be on the ground fighting the Hex mono v mono. Since these "battleships" are akin to the Navy, you should use Navy Australian ranks. I know you could reform the ranks in 3070, but they seem to really like to act off of history, so act on historical ranks.

So that begs the question. Why is this man who is essentially a captain even in consideration for a fleet from (maybe) a Rear Admiral? It's odd.

“Are you sure that is a wise course of action, sir? I have only served for seven years.” Eisenhower chuckled, “That may be, but in those seven years you have not only managed to capture twelve ships for the United Empires and secured a stronghold in the frontier but you have also remained loyal and have never taken a step out of place. No other man on this ship is as worthy as you. Don’t let that get to your head though, you are still a Colonel until we return to Australia.”
Why is he questioning this? He's getting a fleet as a Colonel. A Colonel! But... He's staying a Colonel when they get back to Australia. Why? Other than facts we've discussed here. He should be getting a bump in rank after controlling a fleet, not staying an Army "Colonel". Again context and words are key here. You need to have more knowledge on this;

The way you can do this, is by having Eisenhower be the Admiral of the UE fleet and have him promote Garrett to a Rear Admiral (maybe even Vice Admiral since it sounds cooler). This would allow Garrett to control his own fleet without complications of being just a Captain (Colonel). Solved your problem there.

Eisenhower said as he inspected his tungsten sword
Why a Tungsten sword? Tungsten is HEAVY as hell and super brittle. Let alone it's expensive to make since it's a rare earth metal. Is the reason why you picked Tungsten is because it's perceived as the hardest, most dense, highest melting point element? Also, Tungsten is notorious for being difficult to sharpen on anything since it's brittleness. Tungsten also can shatter pretty easily too, because of again its brittleness, if Garrett even tried to swing that sword into any type of plate armor, it would crack like glass. That's why you see Tungsten Alloys, not just pure Tungsten swords.

Their sword was always in a black leather [Note-Not Letherum] sheathe
Should be "sheath" and the fact that I need to have the "note" that that is not Letherum proves that Letherum needs a new name. I suggest maybe Capraxia, Corium (leather in latin), Furanturia (steal in latin PUN) Amaprovar etc. Any name than the lazy use of "Letherum" would be better here. Please accept my critique here. It's lazy writing to have a material be almost the same as the base material, it's just lazy man. Sorry, but it is.

Thirteen years ago, when Garret was fifteen years old, he had spotted the man near a bridge in Russia, fighting off three United Empires guards
This kids 28 years old? And he's a Colonel (Captain)? And he's getting a fleet? The average age of a Colonel is 49 years old. 28 is almost unheard of. Considering he was 21 when he joined, he rose up the ranks that fast is mind boggling, I do not care if you want your character to be "cool" there are some limitations in this. A military fleet leader need to have discipline, maturity, and a sense of what he's doing. 28 year olds do not have those senses. Eisenhower is an idiot if hes trusting a fleet to a 28 year old, and again, I know the military could have changed in 3070, but this kid needs to be a prodigy to even be considered for a fleet. And if he is truly the next "Alexander the Great" WHY ARE THEY SENDING HIM INTO BATTLE?

Because of this, Garret had joined with the United Empires as it was his best chance in finding this man and figuring out what had occurred.
What? This? This is your protagonist's motivation? Really? To find a man who had no effect on his life. This is a weak motivation. Have the guy at least be his father or something. C'mon man. This is so impersonal, I don't care about the "Mystery guy who flew threw a portal" Who cares? Make it personal make me care about this motivation this just made me pissed off, not motivated to continue.

The Ending
The ending isn't very good either, it's all exposition filler that needs to be shown, not told. I'm not being told a fairy tale here. I should be given a gritty war story with some serious motivation. Also, where did Garret get this map? How does he know what the marks mean? So many questions.

In Conclusion:
So, there definitely are some formatting issues, that made it super hard to read. There are also your typical grammatical issues, (it's when it should be its etc.) but overall it was fine.

The Plot:
You have a very interesting plot here. I could see it going "somewhere" but it's going to need a LOT of refining, and formatting and planning. You need to do research on vessels, battleships, Zeppelins, miltary ranks, guns, materials, flammablity. For a story like this you need to have a rough basis of what your going to need here. I enjoyed the plot, good concept decently paced, but overall with a lack of knowledge it got nowhere. I would read on, but I don't know for how long with all the inaccuracies. I eventually just got bored, and pissed, because this has SO MUCH potential in it, but it's wasted Hovini. It's wasted.

What I want you to do:
I want you to continue and fix this, and repost it on this thread correctly formatted and fixed up. I liked the story, but right now it's just meh. The concept is amazing, but the execution is just horrid.

I really hope this helps in any form, I want you to continue writing this and just work on it please.


Jay Greenstein
December 11th, 2016, 04:55 PM
Okay, you've been beaten about the head and shoulders with a 2x4, and I imagine you're smarting a bit about now, given that you expected at least a, "But in all, a great story idea." (I've been there) :black_eyed:

But though Ptolemy did seem to be in a grumpy mood, that was, in reality, your fault for not doing your homework and triggering it. And in reality, everything in that post was accurate and deserved. And that's what this is about: how to fix the problem and keep the reader happy. My view is that you've demonstrated the desire and the perseverance—a good thing—but are missing several critical pieces of information:

• We don't learn how to write in school—not as a publisher or professional fiction writer view that act. It's a natural mistake to believe that we do learn what's necessary, given that all forms of writing are called writing. But because our schooling is aimed at making us self sufficient adults, with skills an employer requires, we learn nonfiction writing skills, meant to inform the reader clearly and concisely. But our readers want to be entertained. More, they want to be entertained by being made to experience the emotions the protagonist is living, moment-by-moment. No way in hell can we do that with fact-based writing.

• You're thinking in terms of the visual, and describing what a viewer would be seeing, were this a film. But you're forgetting that mentioning what there is to be seen does not give the reader the visual you hold in your head as you write. Sight is a parallel sense. In a glance at the film version the viewer gets a huge amount of data. They know how all the people look and where they are in relation to each other and the background. None of that makes it to the page. They know the age and dress of the characters, which includes what they are to each other, to a large extent. None of that makes it to the page. They know a great deal about their society and technology. None of that makes it to the page. And that doesn't mention everything that comes via sound, which also doesn't make it to the page. In short, our medium is a serial one that supports only the action critical to the protagonist's decision-making. Anything other than what moves the plot, develops character, or sets the scene meaningfully, serves only to slow the narrative to a crawl. If the action takes longer to read than it would take to view in a film, your scene's intensity is extinguished.

• Forgot plot as being important. Yes, it matters, but only in retrospect. Your reader is on page one. What matters to them is what's happening in the moment your players call "now." What decisions must be made now, and why? What am I, the protagonist, hoping to accomplish by my immediate speech/actions? Thinking about the long term is for when the protagonist is recovering from the immediate action and is again on control of their environment. If your reader is not wondering "what do we do now?" they're not living the scene, they're hearing about it—reading a report.

• At the moment you're thinking in terms of the needs of the plot. So you give the characters the lines that will make them seem heroic and forthright, or evil and despicable, or.... But have you asked them for their opinion? Fail to take their human response to the situation into account and they all speak with your voice and think with your mind. They act to do your bidding, not live their story as they feel necessary. So, if your plot needs smart they're smart. If they have to be dumb to make a plot point work they obligingly turn stupid. And as a result, they read as plot devices—comic book characters—not living people being driven by their own needs and personality.

The short version? You're winging it. Because you're not aware that fiction for the page has different goals, and the even definition of familiar terms, you, like most of us when we turn to recording our stories, are falling back on the schoolday writing skills you've been perfecting for more than a decade. No crime, certainly, because we all start there. And the good news is that it's not a matter of good or bad writing, or even talent. It's that you need the learned part of the profession. And that can be learned as easily (or with the same difficulty) as your schooldays writing skills. The further good news is that it won't take the twelve years our nonfiction education took. And, if you are meant to be a writer, it will be fun—like going backstage at the theater.

So there you have it. Not great news, I know, given that you were hoping to be rich and famous from your writing by next year this time. But it is the same news every successful writer has faced and overcome. And someone has to make it, so why not you?

So head for the local library's fiction writing section and devour a half dozen books, to get a feel for what the pros think. You don't have to follow their advice, of course, because there are precious few rules (don't start a sentence with a comma, comes to mind). But we do know that their advice worked for them. You can discard, or find a new use for a given tool. But if you're not aware that the tool exists?

Hang in there, and keep on writing.

“It is impossible to discourage the real writers - they don’t give a damn what you say, they’re going to write.”
~ Sinclair Lewis

December 11th, 2016, 04:58 PM
But though Ptolemy did seem to be in a grumpy mood

It was like 2 AM when I posted it... So I was a bit sleep deprived whoops

I enjoyed the concept, I just did not enjoy the execution and it wasn't even the formatting, it was just the general lack of knowledge that got me grumpy and a tad ticked. Because I was reading a story that had decent potential whos writer had little knowledge on materials, military ranks, boat sizes, etc.

I liked it Hoivin, it just needs a lot of work, like Jay said.

December 12th, 2016, 02:58 AM
I REALLY appreciate the huge editing dump, I'll get right on it. I just wanted to explain the Tungsten thing, which is absent from my next draft.I knew tungsten was easily shattered but I didint know about it being heavy, I chose tungsten for the UE higher ups because they were suppose to be the kind to just sit back and watch. There was going to be a bit later on when Garret entered combat but his sword shattered when being parried by a steel sword, but I had forgotten all about this when I wrote the part where Eisenhower mentions how Garret had taken multiple ships and a frontier. I realize there are multiple instances of my ignorance, and I thank you for writing down all, if not most, of my mistakes and how ways to properly fix them. Thank you again, I plan on rewriting the whole post after I do some research.

December 12th, 2016, 03:04 AM
Quick Request to the critiques, It would help if you were a bit more specific on the formatting issues, Is it the paragraphs? the font size? I cant really tell, Thanks again.

December 12th, 2016, 07:34 AM
Quick Request to the critiques, It would help if you were a bit more specific on the formatting issues, Is it the paragraphs? the font size? I cant really tell, Thanks again.

To me it's the paragraph sizes. They're huge and I'm sorry to say they put me off reading (and I love a bit of steampunk, me). That second paragraph has lots of dialogue at which there should be some new paragraphs.

December 12th, 2016, 07:59 AM
I REALLY appreciate the huge editing dump, I'll get right on it. I just wanted to explain the Tungsten thing, which is absent from my next draft.I knew tungsten was easily shattered but I didint know about it being heavy, I chose tungsten for the UE higher ups because they were suppose to be the kind to just sit back and watch. There was going to be a bit later on when Garret entered combat but his sword shattered when being parried by a steel sword, but I had forgotten all about this when I wrote the part where Eisenhower mentions how Garret had taken multiple ships and a frontier. I realize there are multiple instances of my ignorance, and I thank you for writing down all, if not most, of my mistakes and how ways to properly fix them. Thank you again, I plan on rewriting the whole post after I do some research.

I'm glad you see the problems and are planning to fix them. I really want to read another, more polished, incarnation of this story.

December 12th, 2016, 11:29 AM
As I said earlier, the system forces you to double space if you're copying from a word document. It doesn't recognize single spacing for some reason. That's why your paragraphs are clumping together. Again, as for the indentations, there is nothing anyone can do about that.