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An Illustrated Travelogue
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destron



Joined: 25 Aug 2007
Posts: 262

PostPosted: Sun Apr 11, 2010 6:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for all your efforts, Farsider. TVTropes can end up eating a lot of one's time. Here's the latest entry:

http://destron.blogspot.com/2010/04/point-of-no-return.html
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destron



Joined: 25 Aug 2007
Posts: 262

PostPosted: Sat Apr 17, 2010 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I put up another OOC entry dealing with the state and future of the travelogue. I would like to get feedback, so I'll give the link here.

http://destron.blogspot.com/2010/04/yet-another-ooc-update.html
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Amaunator



Joined: 03 Dec 2005
Posts: 2074
Location: Belgium ... innocuous but intrepid!

PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2010 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think Palestrina had some good points to make, and you definitely should work the more binding (and still dividing) names of the various parts of the travels into the form of the Travelogue for good. Not only are they good for mental bookmarks, as Palestrina pointed out, but they also set the mood of the chapters and they add another dimension of differentiation between the zones, regardless of your approach to writing those chapters.

I also concur that audio books would be simply brilliant. Of course, I realise that it entails much too much micromanagement on your part just to find someone to do that for you (mind you, I've been told I have a pleasant voice and I would do it if I knew the ins and outs of the trade [I'm afraid my microphone wouldn't do justice to your craftsmanship Very Happy]), so I can understand if you won't indulge in that.

Furthermore I have to say that it might be prudent to stop while you're ahead. Once you've done Northrend you'll have gone over all of Azeroth and Outland. There is no amount of change they can bring to the old zones to merit your taking out two or three chapters for a zone. I'm also afraid it would garner you having to reread the zone chapters of the place you're revisiting and try to retrace Destron's steps. It'd be too complicated and at the same time too predictable, I fear, especially when you suppose that you're likely to run into the same characters again.

By the by, congrats on being accepted to Chapman! Smile

Part of being a writer is to let go, though. You are as deeply embroiled into the story and the mind of Destron as any avid reader is, and you'd like to say where he ends up, what he goes on to do in the ever-changing world of Warcraft, but at a certain point you have to work towards an ending; an ending that brings home the underlying themes in the Travelogue (information gathering: we last read him entering the lair of Malygos; redemption for the state of undeath: he is killed in a final battle with Arthas; the rise and fall of nations: you finish off the story by means of "getting the Travelogue published" in character Smile and thereby give a concluding resumé of what Destron has learned etc.).

Kill your darlings, as they say. You must let go to start fresh on the other works you have rolling around your head Very Happy, because, believe me, you are definitely a writer. The Travelogue was just you dangling your feet, but it's grown into far more. You have the writer's attitude and you have the skill of narration. You already show signs of storytelling finesse, as well, so you can easily let the Travelogue come to a close as you develop into other or broader genres of writing Smile.

In a way, I find it both perplexing and entirely common that you consult us in this. Perplexing because this is your choice to make; we are just readers, fans and hangers-on. The only say we have is in our own interest for you to churn out more of the same. That, however, is not in your interest. But it is common because writers usually cave in to such demands from readers Very Happy, especially since blogging allows direct access to the writer. So heed well the advice you're given, but make sure to not bow to unreasonable or petty demands, and furthermore I wish you luck in all your undertakings and literature Smile.

P.S: I'll comment on the last chapter in another post.
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destron



Joined: 25 Aug 2007
Posts: 262

PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2010 12:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks. I'm still undecided about Cataclysm. You do bring up good points, however. Like I said in the OOC update, I will be taking a break of at least four months—I say at least, because it may be permanent (and if, say, six months go by without an update, I might jump back in to give it an epilogue, maybe a letter written by Destron from his new home in Planescape's Sigil Very Happy ).

I can promise a few things, however. One, I will not be revisiting all of the old zones if I do decide to cover Cataclysm. I will only revisit those that get major changes and that sufficiently interest me. Two, I will return to the old school format of only having one chapter per zone.

Again, a lot of it depends on how I feel at the time. If it turns out that I'm having a hard time coming up with things to write, I'll be more likely to start dabbling in the travelogue again. Then there's also my workload in Chapman. Whatever the case, the travelogue will shift into second priority, if that. I'm already working on another Scratched Nerve story, which should be up by the end of the month.

EDIT: Oh, and in regards to reader opinion, you do have a point as to the risks that poses. (Un)fortunately, I'm pretty self-centered when it comes to writing, so I'll end up doing whatever I think is most pragmatic.
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destron



Joined: 25 Aug 2007
Posts: 262

PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2010 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first part of the Borean Tundra has been completed.

http://destron.blogspot.com/2010/04/borean-tundra-part-1.html

I also added a little bit of information about Garithos in the Undercity section. I was originally going to put it in Borean Tundra, but realized it felt too much like a tangent. Just go to Undercity and do a command/control-F for Garithos.

http://destron.blogspot.com/2007/10/undercity.html
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Amaunator



Joined: 03 Dec 2005
Posts: 2074
Location: Belgium ... innocuous but intrepid!

PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2010 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In regards to Ogrimmar:

We are loyal to the Warchief, as always. But now the tribe is seething with rage The Darkspear see little use for the Forsaken, and many think the Warchief a fool for accepting them.
--> There's a period missing.

You should have heard Ur’kyo, the priest, yesterday, saying the tribeshould be shunning for letting the living dead into the Lodge.
--> Missing space between "tribe" and "should", and "us" after "shunning".

Than I am declaring this a toast to Orgrimmar!
--> "then"

That's a nice ending to the chapter Smile. Maybe you should revisit the wording a little, but the sentiment is definitely hopeful Very Happy.

Then, Borean Tundra:

Goblins workers hurry through the smog and noise
--> "Goblin workers"

and still find myself in the icy dampness the characterizes the lower levels
--> "dampness that"

I heard the story from stern tauren shaman named Kolhowakan Windmane.
--> "a stern tauren..."

Hour passed as we observed in silence.
--> "An hour"? "Hours"?

The colony of Farshire almost completely overrun.
--> "of Farshire was"

Nerrin said this with a confident smile, but eyes spoke volumes.
--> "his eyes"

That's quite a haul for a first chapter, from Warsong Hold to Valliance Keep Smile. I liked the picture of Valliance Keep you included. It looked far more impressive than that of the Warsong Hold.
_________________
the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

the sun...
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destron



Joined: 25 Aug 2007
Posts: 262

PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 3:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks as always, Amaunator. Now, this isn't directly related to the travelogue, but I did update my original fiction blog with a new story. Check it out!

http://scratchednerve.blogspot.com/2010/04/way-things-go.html
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Farsider



Joined: 10 Aug 2005
Posts: 913

PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2010 10:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry for my long silence. I work for the census bureau, and we're just hitting the once-every-decade major crunch time this month. I'll add more later, but so far, thumbs up on everything I've seen.
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Amaunator



Joined: 03 Dec 2005
Posts: 2074
Location: Belgium ... innocuous but intrepid!

PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 10:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like the fact that you're still experimenting Smile. Blogs are an excellent tool to just clear your mind and start from scratch, especially if you've got some stray inspiration, but I'm slightly concerned that you've forgotten to incorporate some of the more articulate punctuation and vocabulary behind when you started afresh with this.

I made the sad mistake of reading the comments there before reading the work itself (sad, not because comments are saddening, but because it left me impregnated with foreboding Very Happy), and it definitely turned me against the narrator. One can excuse the lack of exceeding vocabulary due to the narrator's age, but not the punctuation Very Happy.

Dad ran a construction business (and still does).
This sentence jarred. You don't need the bracketed part if you just changed the tense to "Dad runs", which would be correct whatever that statement might presuppose of the narrator's age at the time and/or at the writing of the story.

iHe brightened up the moment we went in the 7-11.
--> "went in" sounds so banal in this regard. It makes no impact whatsoever, even though the sentence is sort of like a caesura or volta in a poem: it stands at the center of a reversal and likewise, should sound the part Razz.

So that’s how I met Charlie and Hal. I wanted to give a bit of background before I go on to the rest of the story. Put simply, they were easily bored kids with a penchant for irritating people.
And frankly, little good can be said for this paragraph. It's true as Lucas said in her comments. This writing style doesn't really become you, that or you haven't really put much impetus in the drive of the story. This is a very commonplace, average, every-day story (up to the point I've gotten), so it needs something special. If you have firmly decided on this as your topic, then you should really pull out all the tricks up your sleeve to make people want to read it Wink.

There is more direction towards the end of the piece, but that's like trying to read a message in code and then finding out there's a code key in the last sentence Very Happy.

I can't really say the style flows well though, which Lucas said. At times I was slightly bored enough to sit back, play some patience and get my mind around the story before I wanted to move on in earnest. Not a good sign Very Happy. That's what I do when I'm busy at a paper or something similar Very Happy.

In the end it's your decision what you do with this. I'd shrug and move on. It wasn't a particularly succesful experiment, as opposed to "A Creature in Full". I'm reading Frankenstein by Mary Shelley at the moment and I'm liking the literary ties between the two, while "The Way Things Go" feels more ethereal and pointless in comparison.

You're right, though, writing a short story is very hard. In a way, you're making it even harder on yourself. Short stories can be up to twenty pages long (depending on the paper size, but since I figured the way the blog crops the size, you could definitely go to a length of twenty pages (in this case some 6000 to 7000 words). Looking back on that, both your short stories were rather... short Very Happy. "The Way Things Go" being only half the usual length of a fully fledged short story.
_________________
the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

the sun...
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destron



Joined: 25 Aug 2007
Posts: 262

PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 12:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the critique Amaunator. I'll agree that the story fails to give the reader a reason to feel motivated. Putting emotional depth in a story of any kind is hard for me, especially in such a short space. People say that I'm too emotionally reserved in RL, and I guess that translates into my writing. That's clearly something I need to work on, and I'll try to concentrate on that for the next story.

However, I will defend The Way Things Go on its stylistic grounds, as I think it's a pretty good approximation of what a Californian at that age might sound like. Granted there may be some bias here; as you may have gathered from the comments, Lucas and I went to the same high school.
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Amaunator



Joined: 03 Dec 2005
Posts: 2074
Location: Belgium ... innocuous but intrepid!

PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 5:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, yes, I knew I had to take that into account Very Happy, but I've never been to California or heard any typical Californian chatter. I'll take your word for it Razz.
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the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

the sun...
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destron



Joined: 25 Aug 2007
Posts: 262

PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 9:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heh, I'm not sure if it's exactly typical, but suffice to say it sounds like something a certain kind of Californian (or maybe just American) teen might say.
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destron



Joined: 25 Aug 2007
Posts: 262

PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's the latest.

http://destron.blogspot.com/2010/05/borean-tundra-part-2.html
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Amaunator



Joined: 03 Dec 2005
Posts: 2074
Location: Belgium ... innocuous but intrepid!

PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2010 4:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Before we begin, I've got an issue with the language on the Fan Art Page Very Happy.

f you want to create some art of your own, please to send it to destron@live.com. Nor should you feel limited to art of the narrator; if you'd rather do something involving one of the side characters, that's fine too.
--> "please send it to"; I'd prefer you work something out without the "nor", which is a conjunction and in this case lacks something to conjoin it with. And maybe drop the last "too", it's quite redundant? Wink

Wohoo, instalments!

A wrong move on my part, and he’d be skewer me.
“and he’d skewer me.”; but I find this sentence a little trite. Maybe it’s more the sensation Destron has about the thought of that pitchfork going right through him? Another angle to exactly the same proposition? Smile

Crude barricades block the road, each one guarded by visibly tired peasant archers.
I would rather think that the archers were either bored and anxious or sleepy and flagging, but not just tired.

The inside of the town hall is almost totally empty
“was”?

To prepare, he will try to catch as many fish as possible
In this case might you not better speak of “fishes”? Smile

Light flashed, followed by heat and smoke as flames poured out from the totems and set the bodies alight. Nearby tuskarr held out their hands, seeking to warm them one last time with the essence of the fallen.
Nothing wrong with it. Just beautiful Smile.

That was a good chapter, once more Smile. Not too many errors and some interesting insights (there was a spat of boredom as you moved through the plains on the way to the Tuskarr village, but that cleared up with the mention of the Gorlocs Very Happy).
_________________
the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

the sun...
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Farsider



Joined: 10 Aug 2005
Posts: 913

PostPosted: Sun May 16, 2010 9:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I liked that part in Farshire, where the villagers were describing how adventurers would sometimes offer to help them, but only in exchange for money or land. It's a nice little ribbing of players at large.

Moa'ki harbor is to the east, not west, of Unu'pe.

I imagine that we'll be seeing more of the Gorlocs in the near future. I didn't take them for reindeer hunters, given their swampy nature, but I guess they wouldn't be able to subsist on pondlife entirely.

The Tuskarr were a fun group. I wonder if their heavy emphasis in this section means that we're not going to see them in Dragonblight (and we already missed them in the Fjord) They had a nice contrast to the Taunka, with similar spiritualism but a different manifestation. I can see their appeal to Lentese. If I had one criticism, it's that their society seems almost too well-functioning. The Draenei may be perfectly egalitarian, but the costs and consequences of their system are apparent. The Taunka seem to be nearly as egalitarian, they're all mutually supportive by cultural tradition, but they have none of the anti-individualistic or self-sacrificing drawbacks. Minor point, altogether, though. It sometimes is nice to read about a people who aren't full of simmering social resentment or inequity.

The anchorite was nicely-done, too. His inability to comprehend the human society was well-played. Not just baffled, but frightened, by its alien and nonsensical nature.

I really liked Morag, too, for the little that we got to see of him. Alas, the characters that I seem to like have a nasty habit of getting killed.

Back to the first Borean Tundra section, I wanted to say that it's no easy task getting a good screenshot of Warsong Hold. You struggled valiantly with that task (as many have before) but I don't know if it's possible to capture the place in a single image.

I get the feeling that, depending on how deep into Cataclysm you go with the Travelogue, Destron isn't going to be too positive in his view of the Horde. The part about the Horde bringing the bottom of the barrel type peons to Northrend to prevent any sort of ambition was an interesting development, and is a theme I expect will be replayed again.

It was great to see Krug again. I was wondering if he'd show up. It's always nice to see familiar faces. Speaking of such, it was also fun to see Nerrin again, all growed up. Makes one wonder if Destron would consider a hero's retirement in Lakeshire at the end of it all.
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