April 8th, 2006


Sometimes it shows...

Looking over mneme_forgets's thorough critique, a few things jumped out. Sometimes I'm being too clever or odd. I get puzzling ideas that don't necessarily make sense and play them for the imagery or drama. For example, having Auron's appearance being somewhat malleable and tied to his powers of concentration, so that he might slip. Another is my thought to explain why we don't have to use softs or remedies to fix status changes after battle: toxins are part of the body of the Fiend, and dissipate when it's Sent. (This is absolutely crucial for the plot I'm writing.) Finally, I'm not actually certain about Auron's lack of a pulse, though people seem to buy it. He most definitely is breathing in the game. Breath and heartbeat are related functions. However, it's symbolic, and it's no more likely that any of them could trek all over Spira without backpacks or warm weather gear.

I'm still a bit wobbly about writing sex, but considering my lack of experience in writing it, or for that matter in doing it, at least when it comes to het-- yeah. Practice seems in order. Take that as you will.

The thing that people notice most about my writing, for which I'm glad: I can write combat. For almost ten years every night, I roleplayed in an online, realtime, text-based RPG where most of the players were perfectionist in their writing, and that helped inspire me to polish my own battle-prose. The posts came fast and furious, almost at the speed of converation. I played a theurge, a seer and shamanic figure. Her power had more to do with healing and spirits than offensive magic; nevertheless, I had a lot of time to observe others using more devastating spells, and in spirit combat, one gets used to turning out twists of phrase to make the stones shake. Fire, thunder, blood, broken bones, the crash of a loved one's body falling beside yours and not having time to stop and see if he's alive or dead -- oh yes, I've had a lot of practice with supernatural battle.

Also, my old alter ego's skill with the spiritual side of her world means that I tend to see many things in terms of energies, currents, the soul or power or music beneath the surface. Lulu's magic is very beautiful to me. It's like poetry. Both are creation from the depths of the heart, a glimpse into the soul's inner crucible made visible by the power of art.

As a side note, to any excellent writers out there: yes, I know, I'm infected with commas so much that my writing's rhythm tends to sound like Bill Shatner. I try to kill them in my polished prose, but it's one of my quirks that I have a hard time ironing out.

Oddly, it pleases me that my readers found 3 typos/spelling errors. It points to my bad habit of using nothing more than my own skill for spellchecking and grammar. It's arrogant, it's lazy, but 3 or so mistakes in about twenty thousand words isn't too bad.


Archetypes: seeds for thought

Part of the beauty of myth is the way old archetypes can recombine and produce new, unique individuals, like DNA.

Auron: the ronin warrior, the curmudgeon, the experienced older teacher, the dead psychopomp. Lulu: the sorceress, the ice bitch, the vixen, the mentor (rather Athena-like the way she befriends and instructs the male hero).

Square had Greek myths in mind, giving them Mars and Aphrodite as their symbols. Here are two others.


"Odin sacrificed himself for knowledge by hanging on the world tree, Yggdrasil, which means Ygg's horse. Ygg is a name for Odin and horse is a metaphor for the gallows. He thereby learns the runes. Another sacrifice he made for wisdom was his eye. He gave it up in order to drink from the Well of Mimir which bestowed great knowledge. Because of this, he is typically depicted as having one eye. He is also depicted as wearing a cloak, being old, having a long grey beard, and wearing a wide brimmed hat down low over his face to conceal his one-eyed visage." Norse Mythology

Obviously theyr'e not the same, since Odin is more fully bearded, but Auron sacrificed his eye for wisdom (the hard way, not on purpose) and he, too, died and returned, although not being a god he could not stay. Self-sacrifice for hard-earned wisdom is the theme here.

Her face is half beautiful, half dark. In Hel's case she is both living and dead, not simply veiling half her face, but Lulu definitely has a hint of the death- goddess about her:

"She [Hel] is half blue-black and half flesh-color (by which she is easily recognized), and very lowering and fierce." ~ Norse Edda translation, Wikipedia
"Daughter of Loki. Queen of Helheim, goddess of death. Harsh but not unfriendly.Leads 'the Wild Hunt' (In Norway, 'Asgardsreien'). Some say she represents the dark side of Freya. [Norse equivalent of Aphrodite]" ~ Norse Gods

Also, interestingly:
Ull: "God of winter, the chase and ritual combat. Spends the winters hunting with Skade, and the summers in Helheim with Hel. Harsh, but still approachable. Represents the Northern winter."
~ Norse Gods

Let me tuck this behind an Lj-cut for those who are curious about a term I keep using:

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Bah, out of my head muse!

I have other things to be doing, but the drabble challenge list on pyre_flies keeps prodding me. I don't want to spam them to death but I keep thinking of new little Aulu snippets to fit the themes they've got going there.

*kicks muse into draw, locks it* STOOOOP. Dammit, jim, I'm a student and a moderator, not a fanfic writer! Why is fanfic distracting me so?