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Thread: Merfolk Writer's Guild

  1. #181
    Senior Member North Pacific Pod Mermaid Kane's Avatar
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    Nice explanation of magic. <3

    One thing I was raising my eyebrow at is the Sylphs however.
    Sylphs are the elemental spirits of air, with their Queen living on the tallest mountain. But they seem to be attached to Terra element, as well as the forest and air. Is there a reason you have it this way? Curious to know.

    (Also, where are the Undines, Salamanders, and gnomes?)



  2. #182
    Quote Originally Posted by Mermaid Kane View Post
    Nice explanation of magic. <3

    One thing I was raising my eyebrow at is the Sylphs however.
    Sylphs are the elemental spirits of air, with their Queen living on the tallest mountain. But they seem to be attached to Terra element, as well as the forest and air. Is there a reason you have it this way? Curious to know.

    (Also, where are the Undines, Salamanders, and gnomes?)
    I'm using the name Sylph because of their affiliation with air, but they aren't true Sylphs. Sylph just happens to be the best name I can come up with for them. The Sylph are the most complex of the 4 races.

    A Sylph is born when a Sylpheron Tree Sprouts. Even when a Sylpheron Tree is cut down a Sylph can be reborn when a new Sylpheron Tree Sprouts. At the heart of every forest is an Ancient and Spiritual Tree called the Sylph Tree. The Sylph Tree is the source of life on land. The Sylph Tree nurtures life on land through the Sylpheron Trees that are like extensions of the Sylph Tree. Basically, the Sylpheron Trees allows for plants to grow and animals to thrive. Sylpheron Trees also prevent plagues and blights. The Sylph born from the Sylpheron Trees help to prevent the dead from rising after death.

    Maybe I should call the Sylph the Sylpheron.

    Sent from my LG-TP450 using MerNetwork mobile app

  3. #183
    Senior Member Ransom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Merman Dylan Zalrian View Post
    I'm using the name Sylph because of their affiliation with air, but they aren't true Sylphs. Sylph just happens to be the best name I can come up with for them. The Sylph are the most complex of the 4 races.

    A Sylph is born when a Sylpheron Tree Sprouts. Even when a Sylpheron Tree is cut down a Sylph can be reborn when a new Sylpheron Tree Sprouts. At the heart of every forest is an Ancient and Spiritual Tree called the Sylph Tree. The Sylph Tree is the source of life on land. The Sylph Tree nurtures life on land through the Sylpheron Trees that are like extensions of the Sylph Tree. Basically, the Sylpheron Trees allows for plants to grow and animals to thrive. Sylpheron Trees also prevent plagues and blights. The Sylph born from the Sylpheron Trees help to prevent the dead from rising after death.

    Maybe I should call the Sylph the Sylpheron.

    Sent from my LG-TP450 using MerNetwork mobile app
    Hey Dylan, love how much you've thought through your system. Thanks Kane for your input too!

    As a former professional editor I really wish I could be the beta reader for everyone here, but time sadly doesn't permit it. An understanding but honest friend or family member works very well for the role.

    Note that a published author will not; they get asked to critique manuscripts all the time, but they always say no. The reason they give could be legal ("I don't want anyone to think I might be stealing their ideas and sue me.") or personal ("If I did that I wouldn't be able to write. I'll just ignore it till the end of time.").

    Beta reading is your chance to get honest eyes on your story before the market does... and the market has loads more brutality and none of the friendship. Just read Amazon reviews for proof

    Here's a great article on beta reader etiquette -
    http://www.helpingwritersbecomeautho...ader-etiquette

    Hope it helps!

  4. #184
    Quote Originally Posted by Ransom View Post
    Hey Dylan, love how much you've thought through your system. Thanks Kane for your input too!

    As a former professional editor I really wish I could be the beta reader for everyone here, but time sadly doesn't permit it. An understanding but honest friend or family member works very well for the role.

    Note that a published author will not; they get asked to critique manuscripts all the time, but they always say no. The reason they give could be legal ("I don't want anyone to think I might be stealing their ideas and sue me.") or personal ("If I did that I wouldn't be able to write. I'll just ignore it till the end of time.").

    Beta reading is your chance to get honest eyes on your story before the market does... and the market has loads more brutality and none of the friendship. Just read Amazon reviews for proof

    Here's a great article on beta reader etiquette -
    http://www.helpingwritersbecomeautho...ader-etiquette

    Hope it helps!
    Thanks for the advice. I know that things are subject to change. My challenge with advice comes down to the fact that I have my story on Patreon. People can see a lot of the in depth details on there for a $1 a month. They also get early access to chapters as I write them. A time will come when chapters will not be made public. Because of my activities on Patreon, it would be unfair to my patrons if I shared anything more that is specific to my story.

    I don't want to discourage people from seeking advice, and I honestly do believe that Ransom shared some incredibly helpful advice. Beta Reading is something I have requested of people. I usually have very strict conditions for that. Patreon is just one way of sharing the world I'm creating and the chapters.

    Sent from my LG-TP450 using MerNetwork mobile app

  5. #185
    I think I'm going to keep the name Sylph for my fairy children race. I understand that the forest is not truly what Sylphs are associated with, but I think there is enough ambiguity with the Sylph for me to use the name.

    I'm still looking at different names though.

    Sent from my LG-TP450 using MerNetwork mobile app
    Last edited by Merman Dylan Zalrian; 10-27-2017 at 09:26 AM.

  6. #186
    Senior Member Pod of Cali Prince Calypso's Avatar
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    ok so the premise of my story starts out pretty dark so bare with me
    my main character never knew his mother. he was told she drowned when he was only a baby (typical I know but if it ant broke don't fix it)
    he's raped a little before his 16th birthday and feels so guilt and sadness over it he tries to kill himself by jumping off a cliff into the ocean. only issue is he wakes up on the beach the following day perfectly fine
    he manages to make it home and finds that his appearance has changed a bit. skin, hair, body type all slightly altered.
    before he can really come to grips with all this though he finds his father has been hurt in a boating accident and is in critical care leaving him at the mercy of the state and at risk of being sent to a group home or orphanage until his father recovers.
    but he saved from this by two mysterious young women who say they are his sisters, the daughters of his late mother

    and that as far as I've gotten
    Little Sailor, Little fool, your better heed the golden rule
    do unto other just as you, would like to to have them do to you
    you think you can just walk away,but no, it doesn't work that way
    see once your mine, your'll always be
    I never give anything for free...

  7. #187
    Senior Member Ransom's Avatar
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    Thanks for your synopsis, Calypso! Just out of curiosity, do you intend this for an adult, teen or YA audience? I'm guessing YA, given the protagonist's age of 16.

    Each has different expectations, and writing for adults lets you get away with darkness and edginess that YA books don't. Part of the reality of the market is that a YA protagonist is expected to be a role model and someone readers can readily identify with. Is someone with that kind of past also someone you can make the audience really care about and root for?

    (I'm not saying it's impossible, just that it's harder.)

    Get audience expectation right early on, and it'll save you a ton of rewriting later.

  8. #188
    Senior Member North Pacific Pod Mermaid Kane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ransom View Post
    Thanks for your synopsis, Calypso! Just out of curiosity, do you intend this for an adult, teen or YA audience? I'm guessing YA, given the protagonist's age of 16.
    I know I at least enjoy writing as a adult--from late twenties to thirties. It's enjoyable to a avoid the obnoxious hormones teens have, ahaha.



  9. #189
    Senior Member Pod of Cali Prince Calypso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ransom View Post
    Thanks for your synopsis, Calypso! Just out of curiosity, do you intend this for an adult, teen or YA audience? I'm guessing YA, given the protagonist's age of 16.

    Each has different expectations, and writing for adults lets you get away with darkness and edginess that YA books don't. Part of the reality of the market is that a YA protagonist is expected to be a role model and someone readers can readily identify with. Is someone with that kind of past also someone you can make the audience really care about and root for?

    (I'm not saying it's impossible, just that it's harder.)

    Get audience expectation right early on, and it'll save you a ton of rewriting later.
    I'm aiming for YA audience. you'd be surprised the dark theme some of the newer generations of young adult novels have really. I mean look at the lost voices trilogy. extremely dark in and of itself but still had a protagonist that many can identify with, and that's just one book series I can name off the top of my head.
    I wanted to get away from the H2o teeny bopper magical mermaid, cliche.
    I wanted something that explores the harshness and confusion of youth and teenage years coupled with a bit of magic and murder
    Little Sailor, Little fool, your better heed the golden rule
    do unto other just as you, would like to to have them do to you
    you think you can just walk away,but no, it doesn't work that way
    see once your mine, your'll always be
    I never give anything for free...

  10. #190
    Senior Member Pod of Cali Prince Calypso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mermaid Kane View Post
    I know I at least enjoy writing as a adult--from late twenties to thirties. It's enjoyable to a avoid the obnoxious hormones teens have, ahaha.
    while I'm sure it could be done with an aged-up character the way I have the story set up calls for a teenager. the themes and points I'm playing around with just wouldn't work if the main character were oh say my age, a 27-year-old broke college student lol
    Little Sailor, Little fool, your better heed the golden rule
    do unto other just as you, would like to to have them do to you
    you think you can just walk away,but no, it doesn't work that way
    see once your mine, your'll always be
    I never give anything for free...

  11. #191
    Senior Member Ransom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prince Calypso View Post
    I'm aiming for YA audience. you'd be surprised the dark theme some of the newer generations of young adult novels have really. I mean look at the lost voices trilogy. extremely dark in and of itself but still had a protagonist that many can identify with, and that's just one book series I can name off the top of my head.
    I wanted to get away from the H2o teeny bopper magical mermaid, cliche.
    I wanted something that explores the harshness and confusion of youth and teenage years coupled with a bit of magic and murder
    Definitely, I've read plenty of dark YA stuff myself. I think it works well provided young readers can see themselves (or whoever they want to be) in some way within the protagonist.

    Yup, I hate cliches as much as the next mer All the best bringing your hero to life!

  12. #192
    Senior Member Pod of Cali Prince Calypso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ransom View Post
    Definitely, I've read plenty of dark YA stuff myself. I think it works well provided young readers can see themselves (or whoever they want to be) in some way within the protagonist.
    Yup, I hate cliches as much as the next mer All the best bringing your hero to life!
    thank you. I'm hoping to get past my extremely stubborn writer's block soon.
    so far I kinda know how I want the story to go and but I'm coming up blank on an ending
    Little Sailor, Little fool, your better heed the golden rule
    do unto other just as you, would like to to have them do to you
    you think you can just walk away,but no, it doesn't work that way
    see once your mine, your'll always be
    I never give anything for free...

  13. #193
    Senior Member Ransom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prince Calypso View Post
    thank you. I'm hoping to get past my extremely stubborn writer's block soon.
    so far I kinda know how I want the story to go and but I'm coming up blank on an ending
    I hate when I don't take my own advice -- I can't help comparing my own fiction to published work from authors like Eoin Colfer or Anthony Horowitz, and I largely gave up. One day I'll have another go at it.

    But the reason I bring these writers up is that they've built strong series-length work around characters like Artemis Fowl and Alex Rider. In each volume they've to figure out how to end the story in a way that solves enough problems that it stands on its own, yet leaves enough threads to set up the next volume.

    I suggest studying those endings that really worked for you. How did the protagonist change? How does the struggle against the villain mark him forever? What is he capable of now that he wasn't before? This is the so-called 'apotheosis' that the classical Hero's Journey builds towards.

    As long as the reader leaves satisfied, you've done your job -- and don't worry, you've as many rough drafts as you need to get it right.

    Hope this helps! If you'd like to read more, Writer's Digest has a great selection of how-to-write books.

  14. #194
    I also write about merfolk, though right now it’s going through a bit of an overhaul so some of this stuff is gonna change.

    The story takes place within a larger universe where magic and magical creatures are hidden from the world, (there’s a story behind this) though in this one a lot of magic folk disagree with the rule and eventually magic is revealed and both types of people have to deal with the change. For the merfolk stories, the reveal doesn’t happen until a while in because I want to focus on the merfolk world. So many merfolk stories are focused more on them interacting with the surface world and I’d really like to see more stuff taking place underwater.

    The merfolk series is a “chosen ones” type of series where some magical merfolk heroes, the Guardians of the Sea, reincarnate after death. New lives, but magic powers intact. The new Guardians, each from a different part of the world, are identified and brought to a palace to train for their new roles. Being a Guardian comes with lots of challenges on top of the stuff they’re already dealing with. They go around to protect the citizens of the ocean from all manner of threats, often large and sometimes magical. There are lots of conflicts and battles, life under the sea can be just as chaotic and violent and terrifying as life above it!

    Human stuff only gets referenced early on, as I said, I don’t want that to have much focus right away. A major plot development is when they find a merman has been interacting with humans, marine researchers. They decide to let it continue because he helps them do work that helps the ocean, and they become major supporters of revealing magic. When the reveal does happen, the undersea world is suddenly in contact with the surface world (even the surface world magical community hasn't had much contact with the merfolk) and the Guardians have to work to keep the peace.
    Last edited by Mermaid Delphinidae; 11-18-2017 at 08:05 PM.

  15. #195
    Senior Member Pod of Cali Prince Calypso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ransom View Post
    I hate when I don't take my own advice -- I can't help comparing my own fiction to published work from authors like Eoin Colfer or Anthony Horowitz, and I largely gave up. One day I'll have another go at it.

    But the reason I bring these writers up is that they've built strong series-length work around characters like Artemis Fowl and Alex Rider. In each volume they've to figure out how to end the story in a way that solves enough problems that it stands on its own, yet leaves enough threads to set up the next volume.

    I suggest studying those endings that really worked for you. How did the protagonist change? How does the struggle against the villain mark him forever? What is he capable of now that he wasn't before? This is the so-called 'apotheosis' that the classical Hero's Journey builds towards.

    As long as the reader leaves satisfied, you've done your job -- and don't worry, you've as many rough drafts as you need to get it right.

    Hope this helps! If you'd like to read more, Writer's Digest has a great selection of how-to-write books.
    That's actually really good advice. thank you
    Little Sailor, Little fool, your better heed the golden rule
    do unto other just as you, would like to to have them do to you
    you think you can just walk away,but no, it doesn't work that way
    see once your mine, your'll always be
    I never give anything for free...

  16. #196
    Senior Member Ransom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prince Calypso View Post
    That's actually really good advice. thank you
    You're most welcome, hope it helps!

    @Delphinidae -- that looks interesting, all the best! Remember finishing the first draft means most of the hard work is behind you

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