Review Request: Nature's Kingdom

3 weeks ago | Moonfeather (Member)

Look for some people to give an opinion now that I'm done with the first arc. It's not really a long read, about 10 chapters are up finishing with an interlude and small poem/qoute thingy. The story contains mythical and superhero elements.

Hope you guys enjoy!

https://spiritmonserial.wordpress.com/

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Responses

  1. TanaNari (Member)

    Posted 3 weeks ago

    Oh. Competitor. Well, if nobody else gets around to it sooner, I'll try to take a read. It'll probably take a week or so.

    Author of Price.
  2. Moonfeather (Member)

    Posted 3 weeks ago

    Not necessarily, I believe Price is more grounded. You'll see when you read. Appreciate it.

  3. TanaNari (Member)

    Posted 2 weeks ago

    To be honest, the only way to get much more grounded than Price would be to drop supernatural elements entirely.

    Author of Price.
  4. TanaNari (Member)

    Posted 2 weeks ago

    I'll put grammar and mechanics advice here, and save the review for potential audiences. You've already graduated past "said bookisms", and that's a great sign, so I'll be giving you somewhat more advanced writing advice.

    First(ly)- too many adverbs. When it comes right down to it, it's better to err on the size of not having a single adverb in your novel than to have too many. Hitting Cntrl+F "LY" and getting a dozen hits in a chapter... is too many...

    Then there's the bad habit of "umm" words (where we flounder for the next sentence, so we end up typing out a redundant habit phrase)- all writers have to learn to fight it. One of mine is "of course", yours appears to be "had". "He/she/they had (done thing)" can be written "they (did thing)". Fewer words and less jarring to the reader.

    I recommend building a list of your specific "umm words" and searching for them before publishing a chapter. You shouldn't delete all of them (especially when one of them is as ubiquitous as 'had'), but it'll look a lot cleaner if you delete most of them.

    And last, there's Filter Words. These divorce the reader from the action, remind them that it's a character that's experiencing it, instead of giving them the ability to feel it for themselves. Write about how it *is* cold rather than how a character *feels* cold. This is one of the many "show, don't tell" rules of writing. (I think) it's one of the most difficult and rewarding skills to master.

    Basically, words like 'felt', 'saw', 'noticed', 'heard', or the like. "(perspective character) smelled perfume" vs "Perfume wafted through the air." One's far better at putting a reader into the story.

    Aaand... I'd recommend using a descriptor other than "Mutant". If you get popular... well... Marvel has sued people over less.

    Everything else will go up in the review. After I experience this mythological creature known as 'sleep'.

    Author of Price.
  5. Moonfeather (Member)

    Posted 2 weeks ago

    I'm working on the show don't tell so the "ly" and filter words should get cleaned up in future chapters. As a beginner I'm learning that sentences should be unpacked a bit. Had seems to be used because I have an issue with knowing whether I should be using perfect past tense or not. The only real issue is the Mutant thing. I mean could Marvel really sue any one else that wanted to use a word? I built this world with a friend and changing the term would force him to change his works too. I don't want to use something Posthuman, it's to meh for me. Something like Imbued would be nice but I can't tell how you found that obscure word or what would work for me.

  6. Moonfeather (Member)

    Posted 2 weeks ago

    I'm thinking about going with Hallow(s) or Hallowed(s) What do you think?

  7. TanaNari (Member)

    Posted 2 weeks ago

    Trust me, we were all beginners at one point or another. And, hell, there are some writers who are goddamn terrible at the 'writing' part, yet still hit it big. Of particular note- JK Rowling. Say what you will- her technical skill is garbage, and she is indisputably successful.

    - "I mean could Marvel really sue any one else that wanted to use a word?"

    They can, and they have. Specifically, Marvel and DC co-own a trademark over the word 'Superhero', and there's been at least one lawsuit against a small publisher using that term. The message is clear: they can and will protect these words as part of their IPs.

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/comic-book-creator-fights-term-superhero-article-1.1327860

    And Marvel, specifically, has weird legal issues over the ownership of some of their characters. Long story short (because I'm not qualified to delve into the 'long' part), it's why Scarlet Witch is a mutant in some continuities, and an actual magic user in others. Because different studios own the character, but only one can use the word 'Mutant'.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scarlet_Witch#Film

    ... Now, because of how copyright and trademark work, you've got room enough to use 'Mutant' in other mediums. After all, mutations are a scientific term (and essentially owned by nobody), so you're generally safe in other scifi worlds. But when it comes to the superhero genre... mind you, I am not a lawyer, so take my advice with a grain of salt... but if Hollywood juggernauts aren't willing to tread these grounds, you probably shouldn't, either.

    - "Something like Imbued would be nice but I can't tell how you found that obscure word or what would work for me."

    I have a large vocabulary. It helps that Imbued is something of a synonym to "gifted" as well as having less pleasant implications like "injected" and neutral ones like "permeate".

    - "I'm thinking about going with Hallow(s) or Hallowed(s) What do you think?"

    Hmm... might me a little too spiritual a concept. I'm not saying there won't be people who use it- in fact, it would be a great "archaic" term for them (and I wish I'd thought of it because I'd totally use it- or maybe I'll use 'sanctified'- yeah, that sounds good)... but the "modern scientific world" would probably want to call them something that doesn't have religious connotations.

    It'd be interesting if they called *themselves* Hallowed, while normal society used a less flattering term. Which is kinda what Marvel did, with "Mutant" vs the much more pretentious "Children of the Atom".

    I'm not sure what official terminology would pop up in your world, but I think any bureaucracy would default to technical language.

    Author of Price.
  8. Moonfeather (Member)

    Posted 2 weeks ago

    I'm going with hallowed since i've edited already. I think the term is pretty unique and would catch on over time with the influence of the people behind the scenes. You should know who I'm talking about. Not to forget the source of powers in this world. Possibly was an old name that was brought back into use during the modern era. The government would probably have an officially name like Posthumans or Preternaturals but most people would use Hallowed. The only problem I have know is deciding whether I should use the word Hallowed as a singular or plural noun, or both. I've been using Hallowed and Halloweds interchangeably, Hallowed more though. It's been a while since I've read price. What's the plural for imbued?

    I agree with the J.K. Rowling thing, Eragon, other books... it's not so much the technical details that matter but the story and the characters.

  9. TanaNari (Member)

    Posted 2 weeks ago

    It's your setting, and it works fine that the technical name isn't the popular one. It just stands to reason that there *would* be an official, dry term used by scientific and governmental types. At least, if their culture is anything like our own.

    I use Imbued as both singular and plural.

    Author of Price.
  10. TanaNari (Member)

    Posted 1 week ago

    Well, enjoy your review. You have a lot of work ahead of you to clean and streamline a story, but you have excellent characters to carry it in the meantime.

    Author of Price.
  11. Moonfeather (Member)

    Posted 1 week ago

    Jesus Christ! Your review was wonderful. Now, I feel like I'm beholden to live up to to it. Haha, yeah the plot is kinda all over the place, at the start anyway. When I had first outlined this story, there was supposed to be four protagonists with the point of view alternating between them each chapter. But I decided at the last moment that the audience would probably enjoy and get more attached to a single protagonist. Those four are still around but now the focus is on Mercy. It's crazy really, Mercy and Tiffany didn't even exist until the last moment.

    I think the reason for that schizophrenic feeling, or the feeling that the story doesn't know what it wants to be stems from the fact that it was remade from the ground up at least three times or so. That's why early updates were so sparse. Now though, with the amount of content I've released I'm sticking with it.

    I do have my work cut out for me. There are tons of plot points and subplots that I need to figure out how to tie together in a consistent and smooth narrative. I hope it will come together well in the end. As for pacing and exposition. I know, I know, it's a problem. Before I started writing this I was writing Worm fanfic, and in that case, avoiding exposition dumps was easy because the readers knew everything about the world already. You didn't need to explain much, you knew where the line was and not to cross it.

    Here, not so much but I'm trying. When you said the first three chapters were overloaded with ED (Hah) did you mean the prelude chapters? if so I do agree. I'm not seeing it in the first three main ones though.

    Balance between action and exposition... I'm not sure how to exactly find it.

    Anyway, I feel confident in saying this story will be unpredictable to readers at times. Hopefully they'll enjoy the various twists and turns. It's to keep them on edge of their seats.

    Thank you for the review, I will return the favor sometime. When I finish with school and catch up with Price, or maybe I'll just review the first book.

  12. TanaNari (Member)

    Posted 1 week ago

    I figured you'd like it.

    Now, someone else would probably give you a lower score... but I have a certain love for the stories that are more true to life- and life isn't a simple by-the-numbers novel of any description. Life is many genres and more plot threads get abandoned than get solved.

    Author of Price.

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