I Come Late to the Party, with but Scraps to my Name

As inadequate as the public schooling system often seems to me, it has done quite a skillful job of forcing my nose to the grindstone these past weeks. As an unfortunate side effect, I have failed to prepare anything for Ishana’s Resplendence Winter Writing Project. Wanting neither to give up nor miss this checkpoint entirely, I tried twice in the last few hours to concoct a scene from either of my two latest story ideas, but both are still far too immaterial to give me something to show off. Terrible, really.

Buuut, I had a fallback. I’m too tired to meticulously link to all the posts and comments on my blog and others where I’ve spoken of my first NaNoWriMo attempt, but I’m sure you’ve all heard of it at least once. In scrambling through my writing folders, I kept passing over the one still uncreatively labelled ‘Epyk’ [sic]. But a few checks short of wit’s end, I finally conceded to give it a look. I brought up my old manuscript, copied the first chapter over to a new document, tweaked it in the places where it was most starkly terrible, and popped it onto Google Docs. It stars Saryin and Felwin, in case you’re familiar with them. Now you can read it…


Don’t take this to mean I’ve decided to take on my old manuscript as my Winter Writing Project, but don’t take it to mean I haven’t, either. I really can’t have much of an idea of anything until I can dump all the first semester school stuff from my head in about two weeks. We’ll see, I suppose.



About Shard

I'm a reader, a writer, a gamer, and various other things.

Posted on January 15th, 2011, in Fantasy, From the Vault, General Bloggery, Writing. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. If your first NaNoWriMo attempt was last year (2010), I have heard some of the saga via Replendence. Writing 50,000 words in a month is a challenge when there’s nothing going on. When you mix life into it, it gets very difficult very quickly. I have refrained from hunting through your blog for more information and haven’t read the linked posting at the moment, though, so it doesn’t taint my first impressions of Saryin and Felwin.

    A few thoughts from only knowing them in the manuscript….

    First off, can I say that I giggled that Saryin is uninterested in watching horses, and you describe his hair as a wild mane?

    You may want to dedicate a little bit more time giving us some grounding before diving into the story. My first impression was that Saryin was a squire or servant, not that he and Felwin were brothers off on their own. Perhaps you could start by telling us a little bit about Saryin. Who is he? Are he and his brother on a continuing journey (certainly doesn’t sound like they’re in their hometown)? How far are they from home? Have they been on other adventures? What sort of work are they looking for? Why does Saryin fancy himself to be hero material? Who do the horses belong to? (I know the answer is him and his brother, but it was a major question for me when he was bargaining with Treble, and one that wasn’t answered until the horses were long gone.)

    Felwin comes across as the intelligent brother. He uses more intelligent words (inept) and seems to know a great deal more than his brother (like what the Royal Expeditionary Force is).

    Felwin’s return caught me off guard. When the unnamed young man was described as a mirror image of Saryin appears, I wasn’t sure what to make of it. I thought it was a new character at first, or perhaps some imaginary confrontation between his reasonable side and his impulsive side.

    A few questions…

    They are mostly identical twins, right? I’m assuming so, hence the whole mirror-image reference, but I want to be sure that I interpretted it correctly.

    Does Saryin always lead his brother into trouble? Are there any other notable blunders?

    They have nothing better to do? Why? Are they vagabonds? In search of a new home and life? Just wanting some adventure and just have enough money to get by?

    It’s an interesting start, and I’m looking forward to seeing where it goes.

    • Wow, thanks for such a thorough critique! This was actually from 2009, with this past NaNo being my second attempt.

      Most of the answers to your questions, unfortunately, fall in an area that even I’m not sure of. I made the mistake with that attempt of building up my story a lot more than the characters and the world. I ultimately decided to scrap the idea after realizing how flawed my approach had been.

      Saryin and Felwin are in fact supposed to be identical twins, but they really have no backstory. The handful of other characters I introduced between here and where I ran out of steam suffered from largely the same affliction. The magic system was similarly underdeveloped, and in trying to sort it out I realized that the world I had built was too plain to fit properly with magic, and various other issues. Much of the project can be salvaged, but I ended up shelving it until I can really do the project justice.

      I might have to use another chapter of this work for the second deadline, since my exams lie between here and then with no time to really write, but I think I’m going to pick up with a new piece after that, and sprint to catch up to you and the others. We’ll see, though.

      • Ah, okay. This may be the perfect time to play with this story again. The story I chose for this project had been shelved for four years. Maybe it’s time for Saryin and Felwin to shine too. : ) I’m looking forward to seeing what adventure the map leads them on and seeing them and their world come into their own.

  1. Pingback: Resplendent Winter Writing Project — Now Live! « Resplendence

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