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Home Forums Blurbs Beta blurb – “Eish” (my adjectives keep changing, but this stays the same) Reply To: Beta blurb – “Eish” (my adjectives keep changing, but this stays the same)

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    Adam Jarvis

    September 16, 2020 at 2:52 am

    Very interesting indeed, Pippa!

    I agree with Denise, but only partially. The clarity around a villain isn’t entirely necessary (though it can help), but upping the stakes for your characters would definitely help – I don’t get a sense for what’s really being risked here.

    Some questions that arose as I read regarding the level of danger:

    • Who is Ash and what does she leave behind by running off to investigate this strange fire?
    • Who are the Warrior Bards, and just how nasty are they? Are they the “law” mentioned earlier?
    • What is the gap between – the people of Autra and …? Is this just a people left behind, culturally isolated, or perhaps exiled? How much work is it going to be to bridge this gap? How much animosity is still left over from the war?
    • Who are the Great Mages and why aren’t there any now?
    • What is the threat the Great Mages prepared for? Is this an apocalyptic disaster, or just more political plotting? What are the stakes – if Ash and the Autra lose, what does it mean?

    Sometimes it’s the words you use – rather than “step up to face the threat” you might say “risk everything to face the threat” (though this might not be true of your story).

    Some of this stuff can just be hinted at. With the Great Mages, possibly, they might have been founders of the guilds you speak of? Or maybe they were one side of the Technomancy War? Something to tie them in to your history and culture, which you’ve only just touched on here.

    What else can you do to increase the sense of danger or up the stakes? Give us a powerful hook at the end that lets us know just how bad things could get.

    Another, separate thought is around character development. I’ve been hearing over and over again lately that character drives us to read books more than plot (and it’s led me to begin completely rewriting my own blurb). Not that plot isn’t important, but without character, a plot is just a bunch of stuff that happens. This blurb leaves me to wonder what’s in it for Ash. You say at first she just wants to live her life, and from this she seems the kind who wants to keep her head down and just go about her businesses. Would she really run off to investigate a strange light, just because it was strange? Or is there something that this encounter triggers that makes her desire to take action?

    Anyway, hopefully there is something helpful you can draw from all this rambling. I love delving into books that give me a new and original world with deep histories and stories waiting to be discovered, and your world sounds fascinating!

    (Sorry – hopefully this isn’t posted multiple times, but I’ve tried to post it a few already and it isn’t sticking…)