Subject: [FFML] Re: [Original][Science Fiction] Kurukshetra Prologue
From: Zorknot
Date: 2/12/2004, 9:46 PM
To: arun prabhu <>, ffml <>

I definately agree with David about the beginning. You
have to start with the character and expand from that.
You can use all that stuff sure, but you have to
sprinkle it into the rest of the story.

All those terms in the glossary also need to be
explained in text if they need to be explained at all.
If the story's good enough I'm not going to want to
leave it to go back to the glossary and find out
what's going on, and if I don't like it because I'm
confused by what the words mean then I'm probably not
going to read more than a paragraph of it anyway. Give
enough context clues , or even give a small expository
sentence, or have a character describe while he or she
is talking.

The story is what's important. I understand this is
military science fiction and if it didn't have all the
debriefings and briefings and protocol problems then
maybe all  the other military science fiction writers
out there would call you names or something. Still,
you must remain focused on what the main character
wants and what he has to do to get it. Right now it
just seems like your main character is just doing his
job. He seems like every other military official ever
depicted. What makes him different? What does he fear?
What are his weaknesses? 

You got the banter down, and you have a lot of very
interesting ideas, but it seems to be missing a human
element. Maybe Reynard had a wife or a partner that
was killed by the Darwon and so he hates them to the
point where his judgement may be a little skewed. Or
maybe he's actually a spy for the Darwon and has a
Darwonese lover. Maybe he and Ian Malcolm went to the
same college and studied Chaos theory together and
Reynard had to save him from an island of rampaging

You do well having Reynard sip wine during the meeting
but then you stop there. Does he like the wine? How
much of an expert is he? Does he really know about
wine or is he perhaps just faking it for effect? Also
what does he look like? You don't spend very much time
at all describing characters and so they all seem to
be vague blobs in uniform. 

You say you want to know whether anyone would read
this as a book. As for me, I'm sorry to say, I
wouldn't. There hasn't been anything to hook me yet
and you need to have that hook pretty early on. My
suggestion is to start with a battle, maybe the first
battle Reynard was ever in. Show him as a scared
child, watching his family get slaughtered by alien
hordes and then fade into his now older battle-scarred
face, his eyes gunmetal gray and filled with purified
rage as old as the vintage wine he keeps in his
private quarters.

I was a bit long winded there. I hope there was
something in that that was helpful,

Om mani padme hum,


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