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Author Topic: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread  (Read 6749 times)

Offline xiagan

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[May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« on: May 01, 2019, 08:54:13 PM »
Earth


Earth Elemental by velinov

We had Fire, Water and Air already (one per year, time is fleeting...) so here's the last of the traditional elements. Earth is the most solid but is diffuse concerning a definition. It's the name of our planet, it's the ground, the soil, humus, ... We want you to use it in the elemental sense, so everything but the planet.
We are curious about your interpretation!

This prompt is open to fantasy and SF stories.


Rules:

1. This must be prose or poetry.
2. Earth has to play an important role in your story.
3. Prose must be 500-1500 words long.
4. Poetry must be 100-750 words long.
5. One story per person or writing team (not per account).
6. You will be disqualified if you exceed the limits, full stop. That's why they're called limits.
7. Your entry can't be published somewhere else before.
8. This is a writing contest, not a "I have written something like this ten years ago" contest. So if you happen to have a story that fits one of the themes, I'd like it to have a mayor overhaul/edit. Work for it. ;)
9. Please add your story's word count and, if you have, your twitter handle.
10. Please put your story in [ spoiler ] tags to make the thread easier to handle. :) You can find them above the smileys under the B.
Bonus rule: We consider voting in a contest you're taking part in a given. Others take time and effort to read the stories - you should do the same. A small community like ours lives from reciprocity and this contest needs stories as much as votes. 

If you want so submit your story anonymously you can do so by sending it in a personal message to @xiagan.

Entry will close May 31st/June 1st, 2019 and voting will begin somewhere around the same time too.

All members are eligible to join. If you are not a member you can join here. Sign up is free and all are welcome! :)

The winner will have their piece displayed on the main Fantasy Faction website sometime in the next months.
Submitting a story counts as published. The author retains all rights to their work.

Please post your entry here.

Note: This thread is only for questions or discussing this month's writing contest. Good luck!
"Sire, I had no need of that hypothesis." (Laplace)

Offline JMack

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2019, 12:16:44 AM »
A first sentence just popped into my head.
Spoiler for Hiden:
They stopped his mouth with dirt.
Creepy. I’ll have to let it cook for a bit.
Change, when it comes, will step lightly before it kicks like thunder. (GRMatthews)
You are being naive if you think that any sweet and light theme cannot be strangled and force fed it's own flesh. (Nora)
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Offline Nora

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2019, 12:23:10 AM »
Oho. Was coming in to say I have a story in the works I'm very pleased with already, and it does include dirt and mouths too ahaha!
I guess it's one of the obvious ways we can think about it. We can breath or swallow air and water, breathe fire... But earth going into any of our orifices just becomes nightmare fuel of live burials and such.

I think I'll locate my story in ancient Gaul, go back to my mythical roots!

Edit : talk about being inspired. I'm 1k words in, and by God I'll have to trim.

Edit edit : I'm fucking done xD Can't believe I wrote the whole thing in one sitting, that hasn't happened to me very often over the years, and for it to happen now, and for me to be happy with it, it's a bloody miracle.
Will sleep on it and edit it, as there is obviously no rush now, but I really don't know what bit me.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2019, 10:07:53 PM by Nora »
"She will need coffee soon, or molecular degeneration will set in. Her French phrasing will take over even more strongly, and soon she will dissolve into a puddle of alienation and Kierkegaardian despair."  ~ Jmack

Wishy washy lyricism and maudlin unrequited love are my specialty - so said Lady_Ty

Online ScarletBea

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2019, 08:14:26 AM »
Wow Nora :D
At home in the Fantasy Faction forum!

I'm "She Who Reigns Over Us All In Crimson Cheer", according to Peat!

Offline Nora

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2019, 09:58:49 AM »
I know right??

Please don't get used to it...
"She will need coffee soon, or molecular degeneration will set in. Her French phrasing will take over even more strongly, and soon she will dissolve into a puddle of alienation and Kierkegaardian despair."  ~ Jmack

Wishy washy lyricism and maudlin unrequited love are my specialty - so said Lady_Ty

Online ScarletBea

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2019, 01:50:47 PM »
Please don't get used to it...
;D
I'll start demanding a story on day 3 from you every month, now
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Offline Matthew

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2019, 01:15:14 AM »
Okay, hi.

So I'm new, and here's the story.

I've been trying to get back into writing in small bursts of short stories, and while that's been working okay, I wanted direction. I've read the winning entries on the main site for a while, but not really bothered with the forum before. I decided to use the monthly theme as a jumping off point for a new tale, and submitted one today.

Looking forward to reading the others and getting a little feedback.

With the theme, I started to write about golems and clay and such, but I've read like three books on them in the last few months so I'd have only ended up cribbing a lot. Still I ended up going kinda generic in terms of the magic, but generic isn't the same as blatant strip mining of another's work so I'm calling it a win. I've tried to focus more on the world building and characters to suck people in.

All in all I'd say the hardest part was editing. I finished the story at two thousand words and had to heavily cut, while finding plenty of parts I wanted to expand on.

So yea, I'd say discuss, and try to go easy on the newbie.


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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2019, 08:07:48 AM »
Yay @Matthew , welcome and well done!

If you potter around the contest section you'll notice that we're a bit late in publishing winning stories on the main site, so feel free to read more directly here, there have been some incredible stories!
At home in the Fantasy Faction forum!

I'm "She Who Reigns Over Us All In Crimson Cheer", according to Peat!

Offline Nora

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #8 on: May 06, 2019, 04:49:00 PM »
No reason to beat yourself over the head because your story style picks elements from others. Nk jemisin didn't invent earth bending and rothfuss didn't invent true-name based magic either.
You can borrow from any magic system so long as you don't go and rip off the tiniest details of things such as Sanderson's crazy systems.

Welcome to the competition! You've got a great style, you should write more for sure!
But you'll not get criticism or comment until we hit the review period after the votes... In a couple of months! We tend not to criticise (at least not in public threads) other people's stories so as not to influence other readers and voters.
I've read your story though, if you're impatient, I'll happily PM you my views.
Otherwise you're now in waiting hell with me, we published too soon and will have to wait a month for a new topic and in your case 2 months for your first critics.
When the voting is done we'll open a specific review/critic thread.
"She will need coffee soon, or molecular degeneration will set in. Her French phrasing will take over even more strongly, and soon she will dissolve into a puddle of alienation and Kierkegaardian despair."  ~ Jmack

Wishy washy lyricism and maudlin unrequited love are my specialty - so said Lady_Ty

Offline Matthew

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #9 on: May 07, 2019, 07:51:58 PM »
Ah, perhaps posted this on the wrong thread then. I jumped to the conclusion that there'd be discussions from the get go. What you've said makes sense though, having people be all opinionated would definitely skew the results.

As for any direct feedback or cutting criticism, I'd be very happy to receive it via PM. After all, we all tend to be blind to our own weaknesses, and one of mine is putting things down and not picking them up again.

Offline Nora

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #10 on: May 07, 2019, 11:00:21 PM »
No no, don't worry, the new threads are added each month. This is where we chat, no problem. Next month we'll open the voting thread and the following month the review thread.

Have a look at the Erotica threads, the ones from last month, so you can see what the voting thread looks like... Feel free to try your hand at voting too, there are only 4 entries and you can cast a single vote. We've gotten around the tradition of saying when we've voted, kind of like to make sure everyone who submitted gets a reminder if they forget to vote (kinda fair, but it's really not enforced, unless things changed whilst I was away these part 4 months).

Titles for your story : The Chase ? Dust, Mud, and Ambushes ?  ;D

I'll PM you shortly.
"She will need coffee soon, or molecular degeneration will set in. Her French phrasing will take over even more strongly, and soon she will dissolve into a puddle of alienation and Kierkegaardian despair."  ~ Jmack

Wishy washy lyricism and maudlin unrequited love are my specialty - so said Lady_Ty

Offline Matthew

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #11 on: May 07, 2019, 11:44:36 PM »
Yea, I'll have a look through some of the older threads to see what's what.

I had a good chuckle at Dust, Mud, and Ambushes - very fitting. I don't think either really suits the mystery (?) I was going for though as I tried to keep the reader guessing a little until the end.

I say tried, more like how it ended up. I think I'd describe my writing method as something I heard when I tried one of the nowrimo challenges a few years back. Pantser. I rarely have a clue where even the next sentence is going to lead.

Offline Nora

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #12 on: May 07, 2019, 11:52:16 PM »
Ah, yes, I think we tend to refer to that as a Gardner/Architect here. I'm definitely in the middle there, often start hardcore in the garden, and as I write I start planning more and more, leaving myself a lot of leeway to erase entire parts and threads and shift things around a lot.
The more I know things, the less interested in writing them out I become, like it's a story told, and doesn't need to be written down.

So I guess you and I would be the type who'd have to go back in drafts to add foreshadowing, because we don't see our own twists coming from very far?  ;D
"She will need coffee soon, or molecular degeneration will set in. Her French phrasing will take over even more strongly, and soon she will dissolve into a puddle of alienation and Kierkegaardian despair."  ~ Jmack

Wishy washy lyricism and maudlin unrequited love are my specialty - so said Lady_Ty

Offline Matthew

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #13 on: May 08, 2019, 02:38:53 AM »
Exactly. I find I do get a rough inkling of where it's going the further I go, but I've also found that that can stymie me later on when I realise I have to write the path to that destination.

When I started I only had a line that sounded like an earth mage teacher condescending the other schools, then somehow ended up skipping all that and going straight to the middle of nowhere with for some reason a disgraced noble.

Offline Jenny HJ

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Re: [May 2019] - EARTH - Discussion Thread
« Reply #14 on: May 08, 2019, 09:24:08 AM »
I’m back- and it looks like it’s a topic right up my trunk and my leaves are rustling with excitement. I’m still not sure it will be human based- but I think that’s almost a given with me now 🤣

I’m in an editing swamp right now and trying to struggle through a first full pass but I will definitely make time for this topic.