Aspiring author and random thinker

On Writing: Project Pause

Yesterday I decided to take a break from the project I am currently working on entitled ‘Deliverance Edge’ so that I can review the first three parts for consistency. So far it reached a total of 80k words and I still intend to write one more part at approximately 25k words – It should end being about 100k word long.

I have posted one of the edits yesterday so that whoever is interested could get to see it, but I doubt you will find it of any use.

This pause, however, does not mean that I will stop writing, or that I will stop working on ‘Deliverance Edge’. I intend to practice editing, a skill I find myself greatly lacking at, by using the first draft of the first three parts.

Today I have begun working on a new project that would be in parallel to the editing of ‘Deliverance Edge’. It is supposed to be of much smaller magnitude, about 40k words, and would require no outline, since I have been thinking about it for a few months now.

Here is the first part of what I wrote so far (It is a first draft and has not even been proofread yet. I would greatly appreciate your comments):

(Stromhaven) was but a small town located in the harshly cold north. The wind blew mercilessly upon its inhabitants, a close and friendly community of simple folk, and brought upon them much hardship, but they persevered regardless.

Located on the peripheries of the Empire, (Stromhaven) was never troubled by the struggles of others. Even traders seldom treaded there and few were interested in the prospect.

Thus in times of war, (Stromhaven) was never disturbed and its dwellers enjoyed their simple and quiet lives. Even the Imperial forces bothered not to recruit from among its few capable inhabitants who could serve in their sinister affairs.

Summer was short and so their opportunity for growing crops that would sustain them throughout the year was never taken alight. For these long days they worked with all their strength to plow and tend the rich undisputed lands. They barely made due and always supplemented their food with the abundant fish dwelling in oceans which surrounded the peninsula, for (Stromhaven) stood amidst three sides of sea and one of land.

Never did one of them leave to seek a life outside their hardship, in spite of their gluttonous and selfish mayor, for they valued the dependence of family above all else. One day, however, a boy named (Da’e) grew curious about the people of the south and their busy lives.

Thus he always waited anxiously for any travelers that would come about. With every visit by a stranger, every two years or so, (Da’e) grew more and more interested in the affairs of this southern kin.

Until one day a bard bearing many stories of heroic deeds came to experience the unusual folk of (Stromhaven) to tell of them tales that none have ever known before. (Shaeer) was his name and he was from the men of Alv. His beard was clean, unlike the native men of (Stromhaven) and his skin was dark. (Shaeer) always had a smile about and carried the most peculiar of instruments which he called the lyre.

He sang of ancient and glorious tales about adventurers long dead, but not forgotten. (Stromhaven)’s folk grew warm in time and valued the company of (Shaeer). They gave him food and a warm bed to rest for as long as he wanted to do so. In return he would write songs about them and sing them wherever he went.

But the day when (Shaeer) came was soon and he left the humble village to seek his fortunes elsewhere. They fold of (Stromhaven) grew blue with his absence, and some even wept at his distancing back.

(Da’e) was most affected by the bard who he spent most of his time with him, unless he had work to do to aid his folk in whatever they required. And a few years later, when he grew big and strong, (Da’e) decided to break away from his people and tread the path of southern heroes. Without informing any of his kin he left amidst the night. His intention was to travel south and enlist in the Imperial force so that he could venture where none of his kin ventured before.

Many years later, when he had been all but forgotten, an old man arrived at (Stromhaven). It was past a difficult war thus it had been along since an outsider ventured there. “Who are thee?” asked a young boy the travelling man. “I am (Da’e), a native of these lands,” responded he.

The boy ran aquick to his folk and said: “Mother, father, ye man of old tales has returned.” And his parents rushed to see he whom their son had spoke of and they remembered him. It was indeed the young man whom they vaguely recalled as children, but this man had grown white of hair and frail of body. (Da’e) was no longer the young man who broke away from his people to join the cause of others.

“Ye hast forsaken us, your kin, for deeds and glory to others,” said the father. His name was (Dwail) and he was a shy man of few words and fewer actions unless work was asked of him. “Why hast ye returned?”

(Da’e) looked at him and said: “I was but a child when I left and sought selfish desires from afar without considering the needs of my people,” – he looked at the young boy with his murky white eyes, – “but the path was not without purpose, it seems, for I have seen he who mightiness follows his wake. I have seen the Divine and he brought me here to spread his word. Boy, what is your name?”

The young boy looked at his father then his mother and knew that he had their consent to break words. He said: “I am (Sageer).” His eyes twinkled with an innocent curiosity and a hint of fear for making his father and mother mad.

(Da’e) looked again at (Dwail) and asked: “Does the mayor (Gaeen) still live?”

“Nay,” said (Dwail), “his son, (Mafgo), hast taken the seat in his stead.”

“And how fares he with the weight of his title? Does he abuse it or exercise fairness?”

But (Dwail) never answered in speech. Instead he looked about and avoided the fierce gaze of (Da’e)’s aging eyes. His twisted face at the mention of the mayor gave away his true feelings, and the fear that has been embedded in him.

(Mafgo), like his father, has also proved to be a greedy and unjust ruler, but the extent of his acts were yet to be revealed to (Da’e).

He looked again at the child and said: “Do not worry, dear child, for I have come to rid you of your agonies and bring forth the word of the Devine.”


3 responses to “On Writing: Project Pause

  1. Story of Writing September 9, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    Merely suggestions and opinions: I would say start with Da’e walking to his homeland. Maybe show it from his perspectice: e.g. thinking of what the parents must remember of him/must have expected to see at that name.
    Maybe he came because he heard of Mafgo’s abuse of power.
    You could slowly leak his backstory (and the history of the place) through other’s comments, reactions, and so on – maybe a flashback later if reasonable.

    I think many readers, if this was the beginning of a book they picked up, might think: Why should I care about Stromhaven’s history? – because they aren’t attached yet, because it doesn’t mean anything to them yet. My suggestion: make them care, make them wait, make them want to know and then slowly divulge.

    I hope you take these as they are given: merely suggestions and opinions, nothing more. Take them or leave them. 🙂
    It is always so much easier to give advice/opinions on someone else’s work…
    You are brave to expose a First Draft to readers. I am not so brave as you. Of course, mine would look far worse… 😉
    Thank you for sharing. It sounds like you have an interesting story building. Nice teaser for readers.


    • thinkinglazy September 9, 2013 at 9:23 pm

      I was actually considering writing it as an account of a child that is exposed in the later chapter. In other words, the book would be written from a first person perspective of a man telling of Da’e’s tale. Thus your comment actually helped me making a decision about the perspective issue. Thank you very much!


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