Ex3 Intro Fiction Critique and Discussion

[#][F] Stephen Lea Sheppard - 2/20/2017
I think I love that story for all the reasons you hate it.

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/20/2017
Originally posted by Stephen Lea Sheppard View Post
I think I love that story for all the reasons you hate it.
Same here. I tend not to come at fiction with my qualifications drawn like weapons either - for me the things I teach my students are for very specific situations and my aim is to get them to a point where breaking those rules is a conscious stylistic and creative choice. Moran is a writer I trust to have done that, so those 'errors' are deliberate choices.

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/21/2017
Originally posted by kongurous View Post
The question, then, is do you want those choices to be in the first thing people will read in your book? This isn't polarizing based on the content of the story, but on the construction of it fundamentally, which is not an area in which I would want my first impression to be debatable.

Originally posted by HighPriest View Post
Yikes. Reading this for the first time makes me appreciate my long-standing policy of not reading fiction chapter breaks in RPG books.
These responses rather bely this intent:

Originally posted by Kyman201 View Post

That's why I was so adamant in my first post that this wasn't anything personal towards Jenna, and by extension I want to make it clear that I didn't want this to seem personal to anybody who enjoyed it. I just wanted to discuss it, openly, and compare different opinions.
Your posts insist your judgement on structure, grammar, atmosphere, and intent are correct. I am actually deeply uncomfortable with the thread so I will simply note the following:

: the intent of the magic pig is to be both magic and a pig. That is, a sign of the small magics that infest Creation, and a nice source of protein for dubiously made pork buns.

: you can dislike and get lost in a sentence all you want but it does not make it a badly crafted one, but Ghosthead has that covered.

: the Boar of Standing Water is probably less obvious to those who have not hung around farms but I imagine it is a combination of both the myth of filthy mud and the way that pigs are actually clean animals. The reappearance of porcine symbols can be read a multitude of ways but I take it to be a stylistic choice based on how Wu-Jian is structured as a culture and as a city (pork is a good protein in crowded environments when compared with beef, or even birds).

: Sabriye's references to food are not a poor attempt at Whedon (blech) but a constant reminder that this poverty laden guttersnipe has been ripped from her home by glory and then left to suffer it alone. These are the first people she has met like her. She doesn't want to kill them she wants to be friends, to have company. And she will try to do that, because that is the kind of person she is.

: this is about character not just history, even so Wu Jian is her home and she does not want to leave. This is the story of her realising this. Musing on herself as a Solar, and as a resident of Wu Jian.

: the intent is to show that Ex3 isn't just Big Damn Heroes. The narratives of the game are not the straigtforward tales of glory. Sure, Perfect Soul would have made a nice simple story but she isn't messy the way this story is. Any rpg can do simple heroics, so why start with the mundane?

The story, is not undeniably unstructured, or badly written, regardless of how sure one person's criticisms may be. As I said though, horribly uncomfortable (even though I didn't write any of those intro fics, I know most of the people who did) but wanted to note that the criticisms are not nearly as cut and dried as it seems.

(Also pls forgive typos amd weird words - on my phone since my laptop bricked and is in the shop)

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/21/2017
(Also, psst, Kyman infers something far more egregious than 'what Jenna is conveying through use of style' when he mistakes a repeated use of symbolism for attempting to ape Whedon's dialogue so Ghosthead is continuing the trend in a much more acceptable way that...well doesn't have all that much to do with Death of the Author in terms of literary critique? )

[#][F] Lucy Darling - 2/21/2017
Originally posted by Chejop Kejak View Post
What threw me off, I think, was the mention of this as a characer who can be expected to engage in straightforward heroics - what I love about Perfect Soul is how that doesn't quite apply to her.
Straightforward heroic narrative - slightly different, but similar in some ways.

[#][F] Stephen Lea Sheppard - 2/22/2017
I think criticizing the opening fiction for its failure to adhere to the rules of a conventional narrative is pretty fruitless, because it is crystal clear that thing is not even trying to be a conventional narrative.

Trying to figure out what its actual creative goals are and then critiquing it for the ways it fails to live up to them (and, as it didn't work for you, it clearly did not succeed at those goals at least as far as you're concerned) is liable to produce more interesting results.

(And, hey, I love that thing. I'm the one who proofread it. I squealed with glee when I first read it, but one of the reasons I was so happy was "Oh my God I can't believe we're actually going to use this, that's awesome!" so it's not like I didn't know people were going to find it weird as hell.)

(Another possible valid avenue of critique would be at the developers and editor, for choosing to run an opening fiction that provokes reactions like "Oh my God I can't believe we're actually going to use this, that's awesome!" instead of "Yes, that's a pretty solid intro to the setting and game; I'm sure people new to the book will come out of it knowing everything they need to know to start playing!" Which is, let's face it, what the 1e intro fiction was, and it was one of the best intro fics ever in an RPG.)