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Beneath the Mountain… There Lies my Problem

Forums Fiction Research and Worldbuilding Beneath the Mountain… There Lies my Problem

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  • #48658
    EricaWordsmith
    @ericawordsmith

    Hello everybody, I’m just going to start a random discussion because I need to do the take-a-deep-breath-pinch-your-nose-and-jump thing, and want a little inspiration before doing it. Here we shall begin with a story (please read this with an English accent in your mind).

    Once upon a time…

    There lived a 14-year-old girl who wanted to write a fantasy saga. This girl happened to be just about utterly uneducated in the realm of Tolkien (save for the animated film which is filled with horrors, so it doesn’t really count), and not very in the area of Narnia. She wrote a book which she fell deeply in love with and has ben hopelessly unable to get away from until she was 17. During that time she turned into a Tolkien fan (there is a difference between LOTR fan, and a full blown Tolkien fan). She spent much time writing a climax for her book that all took place under a cave and was filled with overdramatic dangerous situations and cheesy poems. Near the time of her seventeenth birthday, she decided to rewrite the whole book, even though it was at one point almost 20,000 words more than The Fellowship of the Ring and do major worldbuilding at the same time. Much was learned, and despite dire circumstances (such as breaking her laptop) she made great progress and cut down on the word count. Then she came to the climax beneath the mountain. She then realized she needed to finish high school and was a little scared of the huge mess of ripping the whole thing apart and rewriting it, so she has not touched it for several weeks.

    The End.

    So, yes this dismal story is mine, and I’m hoping that maybe somebody might have a word of advice about this, how to rebrainstorm a very messy long section. It is also to prove to certain people on this forum that I do actually write about other things than handkerchieves and hobbit holes on this website. So, here we go.

    It involves two girls and a boy, one girl not exactly there the entire time, and not exactly liked by the other two. They are going down deep within a mountain to face a couple of things that I don’t want to reveal just yet because it would involve a lot of explanation. As of right now, they were supposed to run around the cave and miraculously live through ten different ridiculous trials like zip lining over a lake of lava, chasms, cave bats, nearly drowning, and my characters should be dead by the end of it, nowhere near able to do the things they need to get done at the end of the cave where they’re trying to get to. I want to keep the difficulty in it, and incorporate some original ideas, just revised, but nothing like the shape it has right now.

    Sorry about the really sketchy material to work with… does anybody have any ideas that I could use, like ways to tear it apart in an organized way, or just odd inspiration, personal experience, etc? Thanks! I’m just going to tag a bunch of people because their names are sticking out at me…


    @wordsmith
    (of course)


    @evelyn
    (because of past rantings of books and thunderstorms and tea)


    @eden-anderson
    (to prove that I don’t hide in a hobbit hole at all times)


    @anne-of-lothlorien
    (because she’s another one of the people who can love AOGG and LOTR and even managed to put them together into a web name [that was a stroke of genius on her part])

    Forgive me if I really should be tagging anybody else, if somebody notices that I’ve missed someone, please tag them for me.

    Thanks everyone!

    Tek an ohta! Tek an cala!

    #48662
    Evelyn
    @evelyn

    @ericawordsmith

    So… wow! Sounds like you’ve been through a lot! 😛 My sympathies offered… with a cup of tea *hands some over* 😉

    So one of the things that sticks out to me first is the motive behind what the character’s do. You didn’t say what it is:

    “They are going down deep within a mountain to face a couple of things that I don’t want to reveal just yet because it would involve a lot of explanation.”

    And that makes sense… I wouldn’t waste too much of my time trying to explain my character’s motives too. It just it sounds like the characters go through a lot and they’ll need enough strong personal reasons to push them through it.

    Also you mentioned something about over-dramatic dangerous circumstances… something that comes to mind is a saying that my debate coach says at least once every week: “If you emphasize everything, you emphasize nothing.” What does that have to do with this? Well, it’s hard to give advice when only given descriptions, but maybe a problem is that, the danger has no arch to it… maybe you’re making every moment overly dangerous which makes nothing dangerous. Maybe the danger is too constant and overdone… and thus melodramatic and unrealistic?

    I don’t know… maybe that’s not the problem. It’s hard to tell without an example.

    General advice for editing though… I find it extremely helpful to print a couple of my pages out – I catch so many more typos that way – and then also read it aloud to hear how it flows and sounds.

     

    “Does anybody have any ideas that I could use, like ways to tear it apart in an organized way, or just odd inspiration, personal experience, etc?”

     

    I’d suggest, just take a deep breath and don’t get overwhelmed. 🙂

    I re-wrote a book of mine recently. I started it three or so years ago, and honestly, one thing that I did that seemed to help was just start from the beginning, pretend that it was someone else’s book, and use Google Drive’s suggestion mode to go through and edit it. I don’t know if that would be an approach that would help you.

    Also when I’m trying to brainstorm, just ranting aloud at someone helps so much. xD

    Honestly, I’m not sure if any of this helps… it’s really hard to get the big picture of where you are with this project in just a couple paragraphs or what exactly you are looking for. Well, at least you have a cup of tea now! …though after this long message it is probably cold. 😛

    *hands you a new cup*

    There you go! 🙂

    (P.S. Tell a sibling I demand them to give you a real cup of tea!!)

    #48669
    EricaWordsmith
    @ericawordsmith

    @evelyn

    Thanks a lot!! A lot of that is super encouraging actually (especially the tea).

    This in particular was very helpful:

    Also you mentioned something about over-dramatic dangerous circumstances… something that comes to mind is a saying that my debate coach says at least once every week: “If you emphasize everything, you emphasize nothing.”

    I that will be super helpful in rewriting.

    I might combine a couple of your ideas for rewriting it, like printing it out and talking aloud, I might need to sit down with everything, including printed out sections and talk aloud. I actually did do some worldbuilding last night by ranting aloud in the middle of the night just staring at the ceiling talking out my ideas to myself.

    Thanks again!!! This is giving me some energy to work at it again.

    And the tea is most helpful (although I will probably not demand that my siblings make my tea [they’re all younger than me and might find it the golden opportunity to play a cruel prank])

    Just a really weird question, do you have a favorite tea?

    Tek an ohta! Tek an cala!

    #48679
    Evelyn
    @evelyn

    @ericawordsmith Yay!!! Glad I was of some help!! =)

    And to the “really weird question” (which is not weird in my opinion 🙂 ) I would answer Chai. You?

    #48680
    EricaWordsmith
    @ericawordsmith

    @evelyn

    Hands down Raspberry Leaf, but a very particular brand. Close behind it though is peppermint. Both sweetened with honey, I prefer honey over sugar, which is good because it’s not uncommon for me to have 2-3 cups of tea per a day.

    Tek an ohta! Tek an cala!

    #48682
    Evelyn
    @evelyn

    @ericawordsmith That’s sounds splendid! Which brand?

    #48795
    Eden Anderson
    @eden-anderson

    So hey, guys, I’m going to be rude and break into this lovely tea conversation, and say how honored I am that you (@ericawordsmith) tagged me. I know SO LITTLE and have SO MUCH to learn, that I hesitate to say anything or try and give advice. (Seriously, I ranked as a novice in the SE writing quiz.🙂) Anyway, before I comment on anything you wrote, here’s a hug…

    Because hugs fix everything. Okay, not quite…but almost. 😀

    Wow, the length of you’re story is amazing…I would feel overwhelmed just thinking about tearing that all apart and putting it back together again. You put so much energy, and thought, and work into it…this must be stressful and overwhelming. *hands over another hug*

    I agree with @evelyn …and I learned some things myself from what she wrote. 😀

    I don’t feel like I’ve got much to give other than to cheer you on, and tell you that you got this, and that you when you finish you’re story to count me in as one of the first top ten people to read it!

     

    (on a side note, wow, you really do love tea. My favorite kinds are Jabberwocky and Peppermint. ummmm, so good.)

     

    "But how could you live and have no story to tell?" - Fyodor Dostoyevsky

    #48932
    Evelyn
    @evelyn

    @eden-anderson Hugs are the best. 🙂

    And wow… Jabberwocky? xD Sounds amazing! Herbal tea?

    #48935
    Eden Anderson
    @eden-anderson

    @evelyn

    Yeah, Jabberwocky is a herbal tea. Ingredients: assam melody tea, ceylon sonata tea, black tea, apple pieces, rose hips, hibiscus, cinnamon bark, ginger root, cardamom, natural apple flavor, cloves, orange peels & natural cinnamon flavor.

    It is AMAZING!!!!!

    You should try it!😀

    "But how could you live and have no story to tell?" - Fyodor Dostoyevsky

    #48936
    Evelyn
    @evelyn

    @eden-anderson WOW.

    Just…

    WOW!

    🙂

    Perfect!

    #48939
    EricaWordsmith
    @ericawordsmith

    @eden-anderson

    OMW, I have seriously found some awesome people!!! Tea and now hugs??? Y’all are speaking my language!!! I’m known as the crazy tall hugger. I try not to knock my short friends over, but when they’re wearing heels, and I’m about 5.10, it sometimes almost happens. 😉

    That is in and of itself encouragement, knowing that people will want to read it gives me energy to sit down and work on it, and I need all the energy I can get before sitting down and working on this section. Once that is out of the way, the biggest issues will be rewriting the ending and finishing an extra story, but after that, I just need one more sweep through the whole thing, fix anything that needs fixing (unless I [shudders] find need to rewrite it again). Eventually I’ll give you a copy, a big hug and a mug of jabberwocky tea. 😉 I have seriously got to try that sometime!!!

     

    Tek an ohta! Tek an cala!

    #48943
    Eden Anderson
    @eden-anderson

    @ericawordsmith

    WOW! You are insanely tall!!! I’m around 5.7, so I’m used to people telling me “wow, you’re so tall” (as if I could help it. *sarcastic voice* 😀)

    But 5.10, that’s just crazy! You must be half Elf! 😀 Any relation of Legolas’ by any chance????

    I am glad I could be of some encouragement. Ferdinand, the hedgehog, and I do our best to spread cheer…and hugs. 😀😀😀

     

     

    "But how could you live and have no story to tell?" - Fyodor Dostoyevsky

    #48958
    EricaWordsmith
    @ericawordsmith

    @eden-anderson

    Yes, my dad (the ex-redneck) is 6.2, and I inherited both my height and much more from him. I look like his female copy and paste.

    And yes, people have told me that I look like an elf (my hair is also waist length, so that adds to it as well). I had to laugh when you said that, about being a relation of Legolas, my writing friend and I have a joke that I am in fact related to the elf in question. 😉

    You and Ferdinand are doing an awesome job!!! Ferdinand!? That’s adorable!!! #hedgehoglover

    Tek an ohta! Tek an cala!

    #49013
    Eden Anderson
    @eden-anderson

    @ericawordsmith

    That’s crazy!! You must have a LOT of hair. I’m positive now, that if you went back far enough, to the ages when Middle Earth still existed, you would be related to Elves. 😀 (My sister is about my height and her hair reaches past her knees, so even though I don’t have that long of hair myself, I know what you’re talking about.)

    And, can you keep a secret??? *lowers voice* Because of circumstances beyond my control, Ferdinand has to remain imaginary. Much to my sorrow. 😢😢 (It’s illegal to own hedgehogs in Pennsylvania. *sigh*)

    Do you like hedgehogs too??? YAY!!! Would you like a hedgehug? 😀

    Do you have any pets?

    "But how could you live and have no story to tell?" - Fyodor Dostoyevsky

    #49182
    EricaWordsmith
    @ericawordsmith

    @eden-anderson

    I’m convinced it’s partly a hobby, and some of the time it’s so in the way I’m debating as to whether I need to cut some of it off… It’s like Arwen’s length pretty much.

    WHAT???!!! Why on earth would anyone ban HEDGEHOGS??? Cute adorable, sweet, twitchy-nosed hedgehogs?? That’s horrible!!!

    Hedgehug??? OMW, are you a ray of sunshine impersonating as a human?? YES I want a hedgehug!!!

    Yes…. this crazy family of mine has miniature zebus, horses, dogs, cat, bunnies, anything else that manages to live on the property. I would love a mouse, I’d name it Reepicheep. The only problem is that my mom hates mice, so… Oh well, the bunnies are ADORABLE and fluffy. 😉

    Tek an ohta! Tek an cala!

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