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Messages - Kira Dwenna

Writing / Recommended reading
March 10, 2006, 06:13:35 AM
The Darkangel Trilogy by Meredith Ann Pierce
3 books, but you can find it in a hardcover compilation.  Has nothing to do with the tv series, or Buffy the Vampire slayer.  But there are vampyres.  Consider this a "girl's quest to save a fallen angel" kind of story, only with a futuristic setting, and a good use of landscaping on the Earth's moon.  ;)

The Cycle of Fire by Janny Wurts
3 books (Stormwarden, Keeper of the Keys, and Shadowfane).  I really liked this series the first time I accidentally picked up the second book (*blush*), and continue to like it even today.  Another fantasy series with a sci-fi background.

The Farseer Trilogy, The Liveship Traders Trilogy, and The Tawny Man(?) Trilogy by Robin Hobb
I highly recommend this triple set of trilogies.  All of them are tied together, but each trilogy can stand alone.  You only get the whole picture when you read 'em all, though.  
If you like cliched approaches to grand quests, and heroes who never have problems they can't live through, you won't like it.  I spent most of the first two books in the Farseer Trilogy convinced that Ms. Hobb hated her main character.  But it was FitzChivalry's sheer tenacity at wanting to live despite his problems, and in just the way he lives that kept me reading until the last book hit the stand.  And I am so very glad I did.  :D

Oath of Swords, by David Weber
(note:  I'm pulling most of these titles and authors out of my head, so if I'm wrong, my apologies)
Funny book.  Just, dang good fun!
Part of a "trilogy" of sorts, but I'm tempted to let it slide until he finishes it.  This book and the subsequent "The War God's Own" are the best, so far.
Quote from: XepherInsurance? Bah, I can't afford anything more than the minimal liability. They wanted nearly $1600/6months for full coverage on my car. That's over three grand a year. The car only cost me $12,000, so I figured not destroying it in 4 years would be a better deal than having insurance. Man, it sucks being a male driver under 25. I've never even been pulled over, much less gotten a ticket, and I've been driving since the day I turned 15. Yet they still treat me as a high risk. Oh well. It's been 2 years since I got the car, so I've saved nearly $5,000 by NOT paying insurance, so it's still technically a "win." It just ticks me off that it's not MY fault. I mean, if I did something stupid and slid off the road or something, fine, I deserve to pay the price, but this... GRRRRRRR!

That really sucks.  I haven't had that happen, but my car's an '89 clunker, and I've paid more than the asking price by now by fixing every single part capable of breaking. XP

Hope the hunt for a new one isn't going too bad.

As for the thread topic (*snort* What's that?) I could probably do some beta testing for you.  I have very little experience with anything computer related (point and click, dude - point and click...), but it doesn't sound like testing it requires more than some time, and a working trigger finger.  :D

I could go on to mention my lack of committed time, yadda, yadda, yadda - but I'll have you know that I'm fairly reliable once there's a job in the works that needs to be done.  As long as it doesn't take up hours and hours and hours, I should be able to give you something to work with. ;)
General Chat / Introducing Myself.
March 10, 2006, 05:45:46 AM

I'm a bit of a "in-and-out" member of the forums, myself, but I hope you don't mind me greeting you, anyway! :D
General Chat / Fairy Tales
February 07, 2006, 12:37:12 AM
Thank you.  That's been something my curiousity has tweaked around for a while now.

Xeph- I shall try to make it to the library and pull out the good ol' Brothers' Grimm volume so I can show you what I'm talking about. :D
Applications / Fairy Tale Bloopers
January 30, 2006, 06:38:05 PM
I like the premise.  I'm a sucker for things like this, though.  ;)
General Chat / Fairy Tales
January 30, 2006, 06:30:16 PM
Forgive me for being uneducated, Xeph, but have you any clue if the religious ones came as a result of the Church trying to cast the die in their favor?

It's a weird question, I know.  The reason I'm asking it is because I've often checked (and re-checked) a book out from my local library called The Complete Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm, and it has an entire section in there devoted to religious fairy tales - i.e., one about St. Peter, etc.

Now, I know that a lot of pagan holidays got the 'religion' stamp on them when Christianity came through their areas.  If you can't beat 'em, join 'em, right?

But did those fairy tales actually begin as religious fairy tales, or did they start as something else (like the aforementioned 'holidays')?

And yes, I'm strictly talking about the Brothers Grimm at the moment.  Fairy tale is a bit too wide of a field to drop someone into without a few directions.  ;)
General Chat / hello, the musical wanderer is back.
January 30, 2006, 06:21:30 PM
Oh, heck yes!
Another musician to 'play' with.......*evilevilevilevilevilevilevil*



Right after I get home, and start downloading them.
THEN you can have an opinion. ;)

No sound on the work computer, you know.
Writing / Critic alert! ^^
January 30, 2006, 06:13:47 PM
The funny, and yet very nasty thing about writing, is that it often doesn't conform to ANY standard you make for yourself.

Take this project, for example.  

I say, it will take a few days.  I check over what I've done, and write a little.  And then I write some more.  
And then I look at it upside-down, left, right, and backwards, and decide it's a piece of crap and tear the thing up. ^^;
(And I honestly haven't posted for a little while because I've been embarassed by the whole thing - which is to say, that saying I'll do one thing, and not doing it doesn't sit well with me...even if it is directly tied to whatever creative 'thing' I've got going on in my head here :/)

So, many thanks to everyone who agreed to read it, but I don't think I'll manage to have it ready for a bit of time here.  My Muse is being stubborn.
Or maybe I'm being stubborn.

But I WILL get the stupid thing done.  Sometime......

So...embarassed am I, but I'll admit to it, and start haunting the forums again. ^^;;

Muse:  I've checked the library registry.  You have an outline in there.  And 3 summaries.  Have you tried updating your filing system, lately?  It looks like a four year old lost his will to live all over the paper.

Me:  You try working with an archaic hard drive and see how far you get!

Muse:  Hon, I work with you, and it's your hard drive we're talking about, here.

Me:  Oh.....right........*expletive deleted*
Art / So... Anyone wanna team up?
January 06, 2006, 07:56:52 AM
Quote from: Aetrexeph: if you know of any of those artists who would be interested and aren't busy working on your project, just link 'em here, would ya? hookups are always appreciated.

i'm also auditioning among the vgcats forum members, because they have some good artists tere, too. got about five so far. we'll see how it goes.

also, kira: just tell me when you're done with the finals, and i'll send you the audition contest info.

With finals and 40 hour hell-in-a-hole workweeks!  Retail during Christmas is fun!


If you're still auditioning, I would love to receive a packet of info.  
If not, I will consider myself defunct for lack of follow-up....but not for lack of trying!
General Chat / The Strangest Thing.
January 06, 2006, 07:52:44 AM
Quote from: Xepher*Smirk!*
*raises eyebrow*  Gee, I'm feeling this utter sense of confusion now.  Wonder who the Secret Santa could possibly have been? :P
Writing / Critic alert! ^^
January 06, 2006, 07:49:48 AM
It does indeed sound interesting.  I shall have to pick up a copy as soon as possible.  ^-^

Alrighty.  For anyone who is still interested, I am in the process of redrafting the first two chapters.  1 shall be posted now, and 2 shall be posted within a few more days (it's going somewhere I wasn't expecting O.o)  I would love to get as many insightful comments as possible, especially along the lines of what you see, vs. what you would expect to see in a published piece.
(not that I'm expecting it, but here's to wishful thinking! ;))
After I get the 2nd one done and posted, I'll leave it for a week, and then take them all (including the 'bad' chapter that's been sitting in here for a month now) down.  No need to waste Xepher's forum space, after all.  :P


Chapter One  ~ Principiis obsta ("resist the beginnings")

He remembered the room.  
It had been grey, and dingy, four walls held up by thick, stout timber.  He remembered the hearth, and being so close to it that the ash burned his cheeks a cherry red.
He remembered the laughter.  He remembered being afraid; he remembered being different.  But he knew, as he had known then, that no one cared.  He hadn't cared, until the day he was told there was such a thing as 'difference' in the world.  He remembered the joy he felt when what had mattered no longer did.

There was another laugh.  A hideous laugh that dissolved his faith in the new world to dust, and birthed into fire his vision of the next.  He remembered his mother crying, and himself wondering why she did, even knowing in his heart the reason.  His cheek burned where it had been hit.

He remembered the pain.  A pain like thousands of sharp knives, each one ripping skin and flaying flesh from bone.  But worse, he remembered that his soul had been raped, and his mind broken, like a child's plaything discarded when it was no longer needed.  He had wished with all his heart to die, and it wouldn
General Chat / Happy Holidays!
December 29, 2005, 08:00:36 AM
Oh, and a merry christmas to all you lucky people who managed to avoid the local malls/retail outlets the week before christmas.  I couldn't, as I'm working at one now, but it must have been nice to avoid the traffic. :)
General Chat / Happy Holidays!
December 29, 2005, 07:58:19 AM
Quote from: tickyheadPirates make everything better.
Writing / Critic alert! ^^
December 29, 2005, 07:56:26 AM
Quote from: XepherWell, after that rant about how I have no time to read/write anymore, it seemed stupid to me that I didn't. So I made some.

On the story. First off, is it chapter one or two? If it's two, why did you never post chapter one? (Prologues don't count as chapters... heck, they often don't even count as page numbers.) The use of present tense is very strange, and I only found one part where you slipped up and did past. However, the use of an "abnormal" form like that usually shouldn't be attempted without a specific reason or purpose in mind. I confess I've yet to see one here, but that could be revealed later.

I note you have an excellant grasp of diction, keeping the words both varied and appropriate... mostly. There were a couple points where I think you fell out of step and kludged together a sentence or two. But those occasional quagmires aside, the prose flowed rather well. I think that dialogue is, as you noted, one of the weak points. I notice two things that are likely the source of this. First off, the character you've chosen for erik (the viking?) doesn't seem to be worked out well. Now, I could be wrong, but you don't seem to sure of who he is and how he should act/talk. As such, you have him asking rather intelligent things one moment, and then really stupidly phrased things the next. So one moment Tam is having to answer a valid question, and the next he seems nearly patronizing. The general IQ of the conversation is all over the place and that makes the whole conversation rather jerky. The other thing that's hurting the dialogue is that you've got too much of it. You started a conversation, and tried to make it realistic, and explain everything via dialogue. Problem is, this doesn't work so well in books. If you have a principal you're trying to get across (like the idea that roleplaying a "character" is something done in normal life as well) you need to show it, and not just directly explain it. It's the classic example of the stupid character in a movie, who's only job is to ask stupid questions as an excuse to explain everything to the audiance. Yeah, it works for hollywood, but I would hope someone who aspires to writing would have higher standards than hollywood. :-)

Overall, not too bad. It's a bit shaky there at the start, and I worry you might be making Erik too flat/cliche of a character (total slob and video game addict) but the descriptions are good, and the flow works, and the premise shows potential. BTW, have you ever read "American Gods" by Neil Gaiman?
Thank you for commenting after the comment about not commenting Xeph.  That made me smile quite a bit. ;)

Lets start the answers with a bit of an explanation, I suppose.  I've done a lot of my writing, recently, online.  I do a lot of roleplay that way, you see.  So, the present tense, despite how unusual it is in a novellisation, is something that I am quite used to, actually.  
And I know that is really strange.  XP

I have to remember what I'm doing to write in the past tense again.  And, it's gotten a little easier over the past few weeks, but several months of school with only a little bit of online time in your freetime, and no time to spend with books like you used's been a little while.

So, there's my wonderful not-so-excuse for the present tense.  It's good to know I can pull it off, though.  ;)

The story itself was actually a thought of mine to do a comic.  I have a 4-chapters finished story of another idea that I am working through, done in the same style, except it is visualized like an anime.  To clarify, it is written as if you are watching a show.  Not in script form, and not in past tense.  It is written as if every second goes by in real time.  
I guess I also took that particular 'fetish' of mine into this one, too.  Apologies.

Chapter One is a short one shot, and is only a couple of paragraphs long.  I decided to skip it and put chapter two in with the prologue because the prologue gave a little more of an idea for what was going on, and the 2nd chapter started with the real meat of the situation.  

I have since decided to scrap the entire chapter and start over, actually.  It has taken me this long to respond because I am trying to finish it, so I can show you what I am capable of writing when not using present tense or visual imagery - as I have done for some time now.  I have not finished yet, but I thought that I'd waited a little too long to respond to your very well-appreciated comments.  It was, and is, about time to get back into the swing of things in the forum.

I agree with your assessment of Erik.  He is not very well defined.  Part of the problem is that Tam is.  I don't a lot of his backstory yet, but I know of him, and he has become more of a person than a 'sketching' to me (more than a scattering of random thoughts pieced together in the semblance of a person).  
Another part of the problem is that I am just not very comfortable with portraying college males, I guess.  I am in college, and I know guys who are, but....meh.

But, I am working on it, and hopefully when all is said and done, you will allow me to repost and let me show you some improvement. :)

That being said, I have never heard of Neil Gaiman.  Most of my reading habits had been restricted to the fantasy section of the library (Weiss/Hickman, Eddings, Brooks, McCaffrey, Lackey, Williams, etc.) because I found them to be more enjoyable and understandable than science fiction (a lot of the terms they use were confusing to me in high school.  I haven't tested myself on them in a while - that might not be true anymore), and because I found other works of fiction to be 'boring'.  Which is, I guess, another way to say that I had certain expectations of what should go into a book, and if the book didn't have it (have a certain degree of 'magic' or 'fantasy') then I wasn't interested.  
Things may be different now, though.  Got any good suggestions? :)
Writing / Critic alert! ^^
December 29, 2005, 07:37:16 AM
Quote from: dragynComments?  Yeah.  That's...interesting.  Living way up in north Idaho, most fantasy never makes it to where I am.  If that's unoriginal, I definitely haven't read it's predecessor.  

Anyway, enough rambling.  The story is good, so far.  I liked the last paragraphs, though I am thoroughly confused as to what was going on.  I am always confused, so it's likely not you, though.  The conversations were, as you said, a bit broken, though I could follow it easy enough.

My main complaint here is gonna' have to be the absolute lack of spaces between paragraphs.  More often than not, they make it easier to read.  

Yeah, good story.  I generally have to read something two or three times before I catch most of the problems, so I'll probabaly say more later.

Also, Peanut gallery?
Hmm.....I watch a lot of Japanese animation (aiiiieeee!  Run away!) so it seems a bit cliche to me.  Heh.  

I'll keep the paragraph comment in mind.  It was mostly a straight copy from MS Word, with me throwing in new apostrophes, quotes, and hyphens, so that's why it probably looked crowded.  Although....I don't remember seeing spaces between a lot of paragraphs in any of the novels I've read - except in major scene changes within chapters.

A 'peanut gallery' refers to sitting in the cheapest seats at a movie theatre.  I will directly quote Wikipedia here to explain the rest:  "By extension, the term is used, often humorously, to refer to any noisy, disorderly, or belligerent persons attending a presentation, lecture, or other event with an audience."

I didn't intend any insult by it.  It's just something that I picked up and took with me from childhood.  (weird how you keep sayings like that, isn't it?  O.o)

And if you already knew what that meant, and were just asking why I used it, I'm going to feel embarassed now.  *fret, fret*

But thank you for commenting!  It is much appreciated!  *nods* :)