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The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 4
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-19 06:20 PM
Crunalan terms glossary
tovshuur - a two-stringed lute
gubei - a fruit whose juice is rich and smooth
kuai- an ideal or pinnacle state Go to Comment
The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 4
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-26 05:12 PM
Thanks for this feedback that alerts me to a vital flaw of mine that I wouldn't have picked up myself. I think what you pointed out had partly to do with the fact that this is my first attempt to use the all-seeing angle rather than simple first-person or third-person angle to write and I have mucked up the 'zooming in and out of characters' aspect and the other part was just being too close to the story and then forgetting to get back into 'neutral ground' for the purpose of narrating.

In terms of Temulen, she is Temujin's little sister and both Borochu and Nergei have feelings for her. I might not have communicated the younger sister part at all but I thought by the end of the paragraph you mentioned I've made the love triangle aspect explicit? Anyway, right at this point in the story, Temulen is just a background character (supporting cast) that forms part of the main characters' social circle. The only other purpose of introducing her right now was to introduce the love triangle thing which is mainly a kind of hook for future character development of Borochu and Nergei as well as being a semi-plot-hook itself. I would be interested to know what are your thoughts of that paragraph in light of what I revealed of my intentions.

I'm a bit slow in doing full editing based on your comments because I'm still writing this story and periodically I get really stuck on certain scenes like right now. However, I really appreciate your in-depth comments that's given me so much help in improving this work and I will definitely address them in full eventually. Go to Comment
The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 4
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-26 05:59 PM
Okay, thanks for the feedback, much appreciated. I will see how I could edit to make all these come out stronger later down on the track.
I did have a running suspicion that I would be botching up the romance bits as well as any action scenes. Ah well, editing makes perfect, I guess.
For the purpose of this scene, it is true that Temulen basically just walked by and said hi to the guys. The immediate purpose of introducing her at this point was because she was tied to Nergei's dream of the future later on this scene as well as the future potentials. Go to Comment
The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 2
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-23 06:02 PM
Yes, Koka was thinking back to a moment in the past, when she had just arrived at the Gathering. Thanks for the catch. Fixed. Go to Comment
The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 2
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-26 04:41 PM
On the out of body experience part, what I was trying to describe was basically telepathy and that is a power unique to Koketani and others like her (the Sisters).
Dream Steeds are just normal horses but they are the heads of their herds.
In that paragraph you quoted, only Aunt Koka was speaking and doing things but I can see were the pronoun she could be ambiguous given that it's an interacton between two female characters.
Clarity is a weak point of mine, thanks for your great catches. Go to Comment
The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 2
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-26 05:32 PM


"Is she telepathically communicating with the past?"



She was telepathically communicating (or starting to do so) with the horses at the moment that she was recollecting. I was trying to describe this telepathy thing in a concrete way. In my construction, the steps you follow are roughly: 1. you stretch out your mind towards the target. In this state, you can say your mind is detached from your body but it's really more of a concentration thing. 2. your mind travels for some distance until you touch the target's mind (imagine someone sending out brainwaves and the brainwaves had to travel for some distance until they reach the target) 3. once in touch, you can take a peek as well as requesting permission to converse/enter the target's mind etc. 4. to terminate this telepathy, your mind normally retreats of its own accord if the interaction was peaceful. However, if you are slammed back, that means the other party either 'pushes you back' or there was some other force at work such as a shield around the mind you are trying to contact etc.

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The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 2
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-26 05:38 PM
"The paragraph that I quoted started with the phrase...."

Sorry I made my response without scrolling back up to see what I had actually written. Your original interpretation is correct, I should've broken up the paragraph when the speaker changes. Changed now. Go to Comment
The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 2
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Moonlake's comment on 2015-01-06 01:33 AM
After feedback from Axle, I have decided to re-write from Chapter 2 onwards (or rather expansion is more accurate because basically I'm adding in 3 new scenes in between this Chapter which pushes all subsequent scenes back and I've reordered a few existing scenes). Any new reader please note this. Go to Comment
The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 2
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Moonlake's comment on 2015-01-07 01:47 AM


Update: Replaced scene 2 as noted in comment above. Also touched up Koka's recollection passage in terms of clarity.

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The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 2
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Moonlake's comment on 2015-01-07 01:48 AM
Crunalan terms glossary:
temul - an affectionate term to describe someone or a creature that is free-spirited, sometimes so much so as to cause troubles. In fact, it originated from description of the look in a horse’s eyes, that encapsulates his will to run where he pleases despite of the will of his rider (note: a real Mongolian vocab. with similar meaning).
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The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 1
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-15 12:49 AM


As with the Prologue, mainly looking for feedback on whether it's interesting enough to read on plus whether fantasy elements come out okay. Looking for 10+ feedback and PM buddy for brainstorming plots for later books.

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The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 1
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-18 11:32 PM
That was what I was scared of- the one she looked at with longing is her father but I cannot find a synonym that doesn't have the same sexual connotation as "longing" so I stick with it (in fact, that's already the most neutral word that came to my mind). There's only one male adult in the group which is the father. But I can see where the reader could be led to think that there's two men there. I will edit to make this more clear. I'm currently giving this another edit anyway and I've already marked down numerous sentences that reads a bit odd. Go to Comment
The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 1
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-19 01:23 AM
Thanks for the input, Axle. This comment of yours and the idea above really helps. Go to Comment
The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 1
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Moonlake's comment on 2015-01-02 02:39 AM
Minor update to clarify Bortai's feelings to her family upon waking up and why she was so 'hungry' to see her father. btw, Axle, your scroll idea on fog on the Steppe was so good that while I did not make use of it here, it would be a minor adventure for the party in Book 2 in its own right. Go to Comment
The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 1
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Moonlake's comment on 2015-01-02 04:48 PM


Update: Minor addition to touch more upon Bortai's journey of self re-discovery. Added still more to bring in Bortai's friends more but might have been a tad too more, bordering on being a Women Weekly article sort of feel (not that I actually read such things so I'm speaking purely from what I personally association with it).

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The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 1
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Moonlake's comment on 2015-01-06 03:10 PM
Actually, this is sort of what I'm in the process of doing now. I inserted a new scene 2 in Chap 2 that replaced the existing one in which Bortai and Koka go through some of the stuff about the Sister of Magul business that I haven't covered previously and I inserted a few lines on how Bortai's feelings for Aunt Koka changed so that it's not as abrupt as you previously noted. This is the first of 3 new scenes that I'm inserting.

I'm also introducing a side-plot for Koka in this series of new scenes which I sort of hinted at in this current version but might have been too subtle for readers to actually pick up (I told you I'm a side-plot maniac, I don't know how you as reader will like it but I did say I picked this story to muck around with so let's see how it turns out, you can always tell me that you don't like it and I will see how to deal with it in my next edit). Overall, I do envisage Koka to be an important personage in Bortai's life but plot-wise so far, she is more like a 'guest appearance'. It's not until book 5 that she really came out in her side-plot (I seriously don't know what's wrong with me but I already have 2ish long plot arcs including this one that consists of a hint planted in book 1 and the actual plot coming up in book 3 or even later). Go to Comment
The Return of the White Deer- Chapter 1
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Moonlake's comment on 2015-01-11 08:15 PM


I had no idea who Tanith Lee is but after looking up her Wiki entry, my take was a dumb-down version of the style of Lord of the Rings (not that I'm comparing what I wrote with that timeless masterpiece but I will be honest to say that I've been re-reading the series and jotting down notes about it but I haven't consciously mimicked Tolkien's style. I write on what I call a stream-of-consciousness basis anyway so that prevents any conscious mimicking).



Anyway, thanks for the vote and comment. I'm pretty sure a major re-write will come some way down the track but probably not soon. However, I will keep you informed once I do make one. btw, there's a Prologue to this book that you seemed to have skipped over but then you jumping straight into Chap 1 doesn't really matter in terms of understanding the flow of events.

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The Return of the White Deer- Prologue
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-13 08:24 PM


I just saw the typo in the title but I can't fix it because the titled name is wrapped up with the URL so I just pmed Strolen to fix it for me.



Yes, as I made clear in the summary, this is the Prologue of a novel that I'm trying to write (I've currently gone through the half way mark). The story itself is some kind of mock historical fiction with the protagonists being Temujin and his first wife Bortai (which is normally spelt differently, I made up this spelling myself using how her name is written out in Chinese). However, their stories have been so mangled up by me that I just call it fantasy. The whole series will span over the period that Temujin is trying to unite all Mongolian/Crunalan tribes under his own banner (although this is a five book series and I have only the plot of the first book fully fleshed out) so as to how far my story would depart from real history, I cannot tell at this stage. In this first book, it concentrates more on Bortai while Temujin is more the focus on the second book, I think.

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The Return of the White Deer- Prologue
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-15 12:46 AM


For this Prologue, mainly looking for feedback on whether it is interesting enough to draw people to read on. Also, the first passage is sort of getting out of my hand and after I'm done with it, I feel like it's sort of lukewarm but will suffice. Wondering what other people think of it. Looking for 10+ feedback and if anyone is interested enough in this five-book series to be brainstorming with me over PMs on plots for later books

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The Return of the White Deer- Prologue
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Moonlake's comment on 2014-12-16 07:41 PM
Thanks, Axle, as always I appreciate your insightful and detailed comments. Firstly, let me clarify, I don't have a set word count, the 2000 thing is purely for the benefit of the royal vote exchange and also because so far, each of my Chapters tend to be under 2000 words.

I won't bother to go through on the clarity issues you picked up, I will try to get rid of them either today or tomorrow with a quick edit. However, I do want to clarify some aspects with Nergei. I'm not aware that I've created the impression that Yesegei think that Nergei has "all the potential". I was trying to convey that Yesegei approves of Nergei more than Borochu who, as you've said, is a bit 'empty-headed' and unseasoned but he still thinks that Borochu has room to grow (i.e. not hopeless). And I thought I rounded out things a bit when I mentioned that Yesegei nodded with approval at all three of them, no? I know as author, I personally like Nergei as a character way more than Borochu the 'muscle-man' so maybe that's what permeated this scene. As for what you guessed from the future development of Nergei as a character, well, yes, he would be turning from underdog to greatness (not as great as Temujin obviously) but there won't be rivalry between the three youths, they will remain buddies throughout.

In terms of geography, as I've currently written this book, it's all in later Chapters as the main chars travel across the Steppe but I will think about how I could do more with geography at earlier Chapters. Maybe start with one short passage of the Steppe and then gradually zooming into Temujin's tent or something.

Finally, what do you think of the starting passage? When I first wrote it, I meant it to create a sort of mysterious feel hoping to get readers' curiousity up but I think at the end, I might've gone a bit too far with it i.e. as the author, this place was getting so mysterious I was struggling for words when describing it. As currently stands, I think it's a bit lukewarm but will probably suffice. Agreed? Go to Comment
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