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    Thread: Inner Stillness (a short fantasy story of mine).

    1. #1
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      Inner Stillness (a short fantasy story of mine).

      Summary of what is and whats to come:

      We all face the same fate- death, but is it the end or the beginning? Are dreams just reflections of your subconscious or can they become something completely different, a world as real as daily "reality"? In the Old Ages diverse magic and magical species of all kinds were commonplace because power was reasonably distributed. Today, however, the werewolves are rising in ever greater numbers and will destroy any who resist them or practise foreign wizardry. Their goal is to gain ultimate control over all and their thirst for more seems to be unquenchable. Most of the unwanted magic and knowledge of it has been eradicated, but some few still possess it, constantly hiding and on the move.

      Storm clouds are brewing..

      Ive started to add ever increasing amounts of humor, which ill keep on doing from now on. Balancing the serious and the light hearted is a challenge. Tips/corrections/opinions much appreciated.


      Chapter 1


      Ravi was running for his life.

      His father had told him to not stop until he felt he'd lose consciousness and fall dead. Ravis chances of survival were near nonexistent, but he had nothing to lose. The werewolves had found out what he was and what he knew. They craved nothing more than to rip him into pieces, carve his heart out and leech his soul.

      There seemed to be no end to the fall of snow and the whirl of wind. Ravis heart was pounding so hard he was scared it would burst out. He finally gave in and paused to catch his breath. Ravis body had frozen to the point that he had trouble bending his fingers and they had an eery blue tinge to them. He couldn't stop shaking.

      "The world is indeed a weird place", Ravi muttered to himself while reflecting on recent events.

      Flashbacks of his village burning to the ground, shrieks of agony echoing through the valley and his father, having a look of iron hard determination, leaving Ravi with his last words:

      "Don't forget the teachings, my boy. I love you".

      Ravi tried to fight back the tears of remembering, but they nonetheless came down like waterfalls.

      Ravi had been forced to flee his small and remote village because werewolves had stormed the place and demanded he be brought forth. The villagers, being unarmed and seeking to avoid trouble, had all stepped aside. All except his father. His father, named Flake, had held the wolves back with the sheer power of his mind.


      { 3hours before }


      The werewolf leader, Argon, stared into Flakes eyes, snarling and emitting hatred and defiance.


      "Give up and hand over Ravi or know pain like no other", Argon hoarsely whispered, while his eyes gleamed in a crazed way.


      "Pain is a kind of illusion. You would be surprised by how much pain you can self-create, using only your thoughts.", Flake murmured to himself.


      Even as the leader was talking a dozen wolves were viciously hacking at Flakes barrier with claws as long, sharp and hard as daggers. Patches of glowing blue light started to appear upon cracks of the barrier. After only five minutes of holding the "shield" blood started to gush from Flakes ears, eyes and mouth. His face was distorted in pain and concentration and his outstretched hands and body trembled. Flake was about to die and felt ever increasing agony, but despite everything he felt completely at peace. Flake didn't feel even an ounce of fear or mental distress and even at death it was like he was separate from his body and was watching himself from the point of view of another person.


      "My best shot at making sure Ravi gets out alive is generating the shock wave, as I could only kill about six of the wolves before they'd get me, I should be able to generate enough energy in a few minutes and release it, blasting their minds out... Yes, its the only way. It's suicide, but what can you do. These doggies are in for a rare treat.", Flake thought to himself, muffling a laugh.


      "Always so angry, your kind. Even though you're likely going to destroy everything I know and care about, I hope you find peace and I bear no ill will towards you.", Flake said in a fully calm and compassionate voice. Flake slowly lowered his hands, sat down in a lotus position, stared hard into Argons eyes and voiced with a knowing smile


      "Death is only the beginning."


      Moments later he exploded, sending bits and pieces of his body and blood flying in the air. This was followed by the cheers and happy howls of the werewolves, but these were soon turned into cries of surprised distress, as Flakes explosion also emitted a strong shock wave. The werewolves were flung into the air and some even crashed through nearby walls. The werewolves were knocked unconscious for hours.

      { 3hours later }

      "Damn, he was a hard one to crack. It shouldn't have been possible for him to hang on for so long, taking into account his age and the pressure of thirteen wolves. Then there's the matter of the shock wave, which was thought to be just a myth. On the other hand, it had been years since the last documented case of such magic and only a little is known of it and even less is understood.", Argon pondered while licking his lips and savouring the taste of Flakes blood.

      Not many of Flakes kind were left, though he was completely human, he had acquired, after years of relentless training, an absolute stillness of mind. He had virtually no thoughts, no future, no past, his consciousness knew only the present. This seemingly small and unimportant change enabled Flake to see through all of his self-created illusions and psychological pain, to the extent, that he could physically morph the reality around him, making it seem like magic to the common eye. But magic is just science we don't yet understand.


      Chapter 2


      "Ahh, I know what my father would say... Just push through, dont resist your situation. Accept it for what it is and look for a solution." Ravi muttered to himself while angrily stomping in the blizzard. "That blasted 100 year old turtle could remain cheery even while someone hacked his eyes out.. But Im not my father. I cant take this. What the hell am I Doing! For wolves breath, Im completely stranded, without equipment, without direction!" Ravi exclaimed. "I have,... I have, nothing." Ravi whispered.

      The wind blew, sweeping in from between trees, bringing with it the frost of the mountains. Ravi suddenly broke from his jumbled thoughts as he realized something. It was already midnight and there was too much light. Dangerously so. Ravi inched his gaze from the ground to the sky and saw what he feared most.

      A full moon.

      "My luck is bottomless" Ravi sighed. He spent the whole night without sleeping a single wink, only falling asleep with the first rays of morning light.

      { Midday }

      "Whaa, ha, a, aa?!" Ravi mumbled, finally waking up. He forced himself to quickly stand up and try to locate the sound of the strange music. "Someone is playing a flute in the middle of the wilderness, days from any kind of settlements. Im not dreaming. Check. Hes either mad or.. Or he is still mad. Nobody would risk their lives this far out in the wilderness. Its suicidal." Ravis mind raced through all the possible scenerous and he came to the conclusion that it would be enough if he just kept his distance from the sound and stayed wary.

      "Aaa granny found a nice lump of meat whiiile hopping in the big black foorest. And what did she do? She mixed it in with her seaweed, banana, fish eyeball porridge. And thump went a bush, an a mean fat wolf peeked around a tree, hunger gleaamin in his eyes, droolin, sharp fangs flashin" A merry voice echoed not far from Ravis burnt out campfire.

    2. #2
      Frigid Academic Aristaeus's Avatar
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      First off, someone at the tree top needs to move this to the Artists' Corner. Second...

      No offense, but I thought this was pretty sloppy writing. Keep in mind that what I'm saying to you is strictly constructive and is not meant to be taken in any other way.

      Personally, I find the whole werewolf thing to be extremely clichd, but personal taste aside...

      These chapters are WAY too short for mine taste. That said, if you're going to have a short chapter, have it pack a punch. The main character, Ravi, doesn't have much depth, from what I've seen so far--though I suppose that is somewhat understandable, since the purpose of this beginning was obviously to dive head-first into the action. As you progress through this novel, I would recommend taking some time to delve into Ravi's personality. After all, the more we know about the character(s), the more we care about them. [Shrugs] That said, the only character I really give a damn about right now is Flake. I wonder if his consciousness is still around, despite having sacrificed his life.

      On to the biggest problem: I think the scene construction is very scrambled and clumsily put-together. Also, there are points at which too much information is given. We don't need to know (yet) what happened to the werewolves after the shock wave. I would suggest beginning Chapter 1 with the "3 hours before" part, then focus on Ravi.

      For Chapter 2, I would recommend starting that from a new character's perspective. Said character could have found Ravi stranded and starving in the cold, and nursed him back to health--though I wouldn't reveal this until the end of the chapter, after having given the new character ample attention.

      Lastly, I would recommend adding more creatures into the mix, not just humans and werewolves. The more tools you have, the more complex things you can build.

      See mine notes and edits below. I took the liberty of rearranging a few things, adding mine own things, and removing some things altogether.

      Chapter 1

      The werewolf leader, Argon, leader of the werewolves, stared into Flake's (apostrophe) eyes, snarling and emitting with hatred and defiance.

      "Give up and hand over Ravi, or know pain like no other", (with dialogue, the comma needs to be inside the quotation) Argon hoarsely whispered, while his eyes gleamed in a crazed way eyes glazed with a primitive hunger.

      "Pain is a kind of illusion. You would be surprised by how much pain you can self-create, using only your thoughts (very powerful line).", (remove the period, put the comma inside) Flake murmured to himself.

      Not many of Flake's (apostrophe) kind were left. Though he was completely human, he had acquired, after years of relentless training, an absolute stillness of mind. He had virtually no thoughts, no future, and no past. His consciousness knew only the present. This seemingly small and unimportant change enabled Flake to see through all of his self-created illusions and psychological pain, to the extent, (no comma needed) that he could physically morph the reality around him, making it seem like magic to the common eye. But magic is just science we don't yet understand, Flake thought to himself.

      Even as the leader was talking As Argon watched, a dozen wolves were viciously hacking hacked viciously at Flake's (apostrophe) barrier with claws as long, sharp and hard long and sharp as daggers. Patches of glowing blue light started to appear upon cracks of the barrier. After only five minutes of holding the "shield" telepathic barrier, blood started began to gush from Flake's (apostrophe!) ears, eyes and mouth. His face was distorted in pain and concentration and his outstretched hands and body trembled, and his body and outstretched hands trembled violently, but he nevertheless maintained concentration. Flake was about to die and felt ever increasing agony (redundant. You've already made it quite clear how much pain he's in), but despite everything he felt completely at peace. Flake didn't feel He felt not even an ounce of fear or mental distress, and even at the brink of death, it was like as if he was separate from his mind was leaving his body, and was watching himself from far away the point of view of another person.

      My best shot at making sure Ravi gets out alive is generating the Shock Wave (since the cost of this spell seems to be one's own life, I think it deserves to be capitalised. Gives it importance), as since I could only kill about six of the wolves before they'd get me. I should be able to generate enough energy in a few minutes and release it Once I've gathered enough energy, I will blast their minds out... Yes, its the only way. It's suicide, but what can you do? These doggies are in for a rare treat, Flake thought to himself, muffling a laugh. (Inner thoughts stand out more when italicised.)

      "Always so angry, your kind. Even though you're likely going to destroy everything I know and care about, I hope you find peace and I bear no ill will towards you.", (remove the period, put the comma inside) Flake said in a fully calm and compassionate voice. Flake slowly lowered his hands, sat down in a lotus position, stared hard into Argon's (apostrophe!!) eyes and voiced declared with a knowing smile...


      "Death is only the beginning."

      * * *

      Ravi was running for his life.

      His father had told him to not stop until he felt he'd lose consciousness and fall dead. Ravi's (apostrophe) chances of survival were near nonexistent, but he had nothing to lose. The werewolves had found out what he was and what he knew. They craved nothing more than to rip him into pieces, carve his heart out and leech his soul.

      There seemed to be no end to the fall of snow and the whirl of wind. Ravi's (apostrophe) heart was pounding so hard he was scared it would burst out. He finally gave in and paused to catch his breath, only for the frigid air to bite his lungs. Ravi's (apostrophe) body had frozen to the point that he couldn't feel a thing. His fingers were stiff as rocks, and he couldn't stop shaking.

      Not a moment later, a thunderous boom echoed through the air. Automatically, Ravi turned around to see his burning village in the distance. From inside the village, a bright, spherical wave of energy expanded until it tore every building asunder. Instinctively, Ravi shielded his face with his arms, and an unseen force all but knocked him off his feet. When Ravi lowered his arms, he once again looked toward his village. But the village was no longer there. As Ravi stared at the now empty space that was once his home, his father's last words to him echoed in his heart.

      "Don't forget the teachings, my boy. I love you."
      In a nutshell: ALWAYS grip the reader from the start. First impressions are vital, and readers are fickle--especially me. Also, keep in mind that mystery and suspense are great motivators.

      Last, but certainly not least... read lots of books. Trust me, it helps.
      Last edited by Aristaeus; 03-16-2016 at 06:18 PM. Reason: Missed a stain.
      Be free from passion, unmoved by joy or grief,
      and submit without complaint to unavoidable necessity.
      That is the way of the Stoics.



      "Do you know what happens to those who lose their true purpose?
      Inevitably, they destroy themselves." ~Sax (Kingdom Hearts II.5)

    3. #3
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      Thanks for the effort to analyse my story so closely! Ive never really written anything before so im not angry or surprised that you have brought out so many flaws. ^_^
      PS. have you read the way of kings, by brandon sanderson & what do you think about it?
      Ginsan likes this.

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      Frigid Academic Aristaeus's Avatar
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      Nice to be appreciated for a change. I dare say, your response is quite different from the usual emotional, childlike outbursts I put up with.

      And no, I haven't read that book, much less heard of it. Judging by the title, I don't have high expectations, but I'll look it up nonetheless.

      But anyway, keep reading and writing. Trust me, if I did not believe you had the potential to become something better, I would not have scolded your work in the first place.
      Ginsan likes this.
      Be free from passion, unmoved by joy or grief,
      and submit without complaint to unavoidable necessity.
      That is the way of the Stoics.



      "Do you know what happens to those who lose their true purpose?
      Inevitably, they destroy themselves." ~Sax (Kingdom Hearts II.5)

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      D I had already come to that conclusion myself in regards to " Trust me, if I did not believe you had the potential to become something better, I would not have scolded your work in the first place. ". Ive read some of your other posts you see and you seem to have quite a harsh way of thinking, maybe judging people too quickly.. But still a interesting personality. Okay this has nothing to do with my story so i should get back on track, especially since i dont know you, so this is still just conjecture. ^_^ And one more thing just in case you misunderstand, by "interesting personality" im not trying to "take" anything from you. -> " flattery and compliments are nothing but greedy tactics designed to gain a person's favour so said person can satisfy one's own selfish ends. " =D

      I really recommend checking the way of kings out, it gets really deep into the personalities of the characters and the magic system is well thought out. It also taps into philosophical aspects, but in a way that doesnt force specific beliefs on the reader (which is veery important, otherwise its just preachy). Though I cant recommend brandons other, older books that are not from the stormlight series. Its strange that i dont seem to like them even half as much..

      I dont have any serious thoughts of writing a whole book, let alone becoming a writer (i seem to be pulled towards programming, as something to do as a future job), so anyone should feel fully free to critisise or give advise. This is just a hobby. After all, criticism and different ways of thinking usually just make a discussion more interesting.

    6. #6
      Frigid Academic Aristaeus's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by pelko View Post
      After all, criticism and different ways of thinking usually just make a discussion more interesting.
      "When people think alike, they're not thinking much at all" ~Walter Lippmann
      Be free from passion, unmoved by joy or grief,
      and submit without complaint to unavoidable necessity.
      That is the way of the Stoics.



      "Do you know what happens to those who lose their true purpose?
      Inevitably, they destroy themselves." ~Sax (Kingdom Hearts II.5)

    7. #7
      Frigid Academic Aristaeus's Avatar
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      Someone too arthritic to move this? Orrrrr just too Proud and Prejudiced?

      [EDIT] Iiiiii guess it's the latter. [Shrugs] Aaaaat the very least. Heh.
      Last edited by Aristaeus; 08-01-2016 at 05:50 PM.
      Be free from passion, unmoved by joy or grief,
      and submit without complaint to unavoidable necessity.
      That is the way of the Stoics.



      "Do you know what happens to those who lose their true purpose?
      Inevitably, they destroy themselves." ~Sax (Kingdom Hearts II.5)

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