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Author Topic: Fragments: Some novella thing I'm working on.  (Read 951 times)

Offline SouperIan

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Fragments: Some novella thing I'm working on.
« on: April 10, 2010, 03:22:56 PM »
Over the past year or so, I've been spending a bit of time writing, and this has slowly taken shape into Fragments, which is a collection of interlocking short stories leading up to the extinction of the human race. Apart from one guy who lives forever for reasons that don't really make sense. And then dies anyway when the sun turns into a red giant.

The first part, and many other parts for that fact, can be found here:
http://fragments-book.blogspot.com/2009/05/cynicism.html
(the links on the right then lead to all the other parts posted so far. which is most of them)

Bear in mind that the versions on the site are the first drafts - most of them have been rewritten or edited since posting, and there's quite a few parts which haven't gone online at all for whatever reason. Also, lots of it still need a rewrite. Especially Will, which has been rewritten a lot and I'm still not happy with. Bleh.

So yeah. Enjoy!


PS: Many of the characters are effectively anonymous not for stylistic reasons, but because the one thing I can never do is come up with names.
« Last Edit: April 10, 2010, 06:06:54 PM by SouperIan »
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Offline Reepicheep

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Re: Fragments: Some novella thing I'm working on.
« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2010, 05:56:53 PM »
I really enjoyed that! That was a very fun read! Please fill in the holes, I wanna know more.

 :thumbup:

Offline SouperIan

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Re: Fragments: Some novella thing I'm working on.
« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2010, 06:39:24 PM »
Right. First, go make sure you've read all of it (all the way up to Fiction Part 2!), I can't seem to get Blogger to display all the parts in the same list, short of poking through the HTML and adding it by hand, which right now I don't want to do, so it's a bit more fiddly than it should be.

Actual explanation, in spoiler tags for the hell of it:
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
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Offline Reepicheep

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Re: Fragments: Some novella thing I'm working on.
« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2010, 04:48:10 AM »
This is when I notice that theres even more down the side. Thats what I get for being a compulsive link-clicker.

Offline Previsionary

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Re: Fragments: Some novella thing I'm working on.
« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2010, 08:40:38 PM »
Ian, would you like any critique at all? If so, do you want it here or on the blog?
My natural response to ugliness is to throw a vase, in the hopes that whatever it strikes is marred with its beauty.

Offline SouperIan

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Re: Fragments: Some novella thing I'm working on.
« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2010, 09:23:27 PM »
Here, please. Critique is always welcomed, gives me stuff to look at when I re-write.
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Offline Previsionary

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Re: Fragments: Some novella thing I'm working on.
« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2010, 10:05:01 PM »
Comments on Cynicism behind tag

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
My natural response to ugliness is to throw a vase, in the hopes that whatever it strikes is marred with its beauty.

Offline SouperIan

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Re: Fragments: Some novella thing I'm working on.
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2010, 11:21:29 PM »
Comments on Cynicism behind tag

Spoiler (click to show/hide)


Thanks for the feedback. The quoted bit, yeah, I can understand that being confusing, I'll go back and sort them out - "them" is a third (fourth?) party distracting Matthew, leaving hat-guy and Jake to get on with business.  Multiple speakers on one line is bad, I know that. :P Some of the formatting got chewed up a bit between OpenOffice and Blogger - fixed the one example I could find.

The asterisk difference: yes, it matters. no, you wouldn't have got that because I buggered it up. fixed now - three asterisks is a time and perspective jump, one asterisk is perspective jump for when the people are in the same scene. It got messed up at the start because it went from told entirely through Jake's perspective, to having the hat-guy drop his thoughts in as well. so yeah, my bad.

About the perspective shifts - I was hoping that the difference in narration between the two narrators would at least make it obvious who was narrating. Apart from one other story, this is the only part where it switches around like that.

And yes, some of them do have worryingly similar writing styles - the Man in the Hat and his floating-guide thing are deliberately meant to be similar, as
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
, and as a kind of balance between Jake's very short sentences and Matthew's slightly longer ones. Truth be told, it's actually kind of a problem through the rest of it - one of the things I've been working on in the rewrites is changing the narration style so that the other characters sound different. Luckily most of the rest of it is narrated by the same character, and some of the rest is by someone he's meant to be very similar to.

The characters all reappear later and get fleshed out a bit more. To be honest, Jake and Matthew aren't particularly relevant to the overall plot, but both do get their own instalments (Swarm and Flight, respectively) exploring them in further depth.


I should also point out that the order they're posted is more to do with when I wrote them, than any particular sensible reading order.

I'm not really sure what a sensible reading order would be, to be honest, for the blog at least - the pdf I made has them in some kind of order, but that has helpful features such as saying which characters are involved in a story, and being slightly redrafted.


EDIT:
After some thought:
Half of the main story, as much as there is one, is probably best read: Dreams, Meaning, Sleep, Immortality, then Fiction. It works better that way, IMO.
The other half is the story of the man in the hat, and the best order for that is Shaman, Court, Perception, Patient, which would then be followed by Cynicism and Dreams, if you hadn't already read them.

The rest you can read a lot more freely, although Symbol and Statue I'll probably merge together into one, simply because they're written such that one follows immediately after the other.
Will ties together the threads of the man in the hat, the protagonist DT and the narrator of Symbol/Statue, if only briefly.
Noir, Artist, Swarm, Flight and whatever else I've forgotten are pretty much standalone. They flesh out the characters more, but don't give much to the main plot.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2010, 11:43:32 PM by SouperIan »
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Offline SouperIan

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Re: Fragments: Some novella thing I'm working on.
« Reply #8 on: April 12, 2010, 03:27:32 PM »
I have just added the epilogue which finally wraps everything up and explains just what the hell has been going on.

I don't particularly like it. It uses the single worst plot device of all time, which although it fits in a story with weird time skips, lots of jumping around, and surreal events happening, I still don't like.

I think I might remove it.
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