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Ashurbanipal



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Fri Dec 19, 2008 2:09 pm
Lord Anzius says...



Veni Vidi Vici
I came, I saw, I conquered
- Julius Caesar



Prologue :

Ashurbanipal. The greatest king that has ever ruled over Assyria. He who has created the first systematical library and he who conquered the lands of his lowly foes.

He was mighty, but now even he has been affected by Father Time.

Today he lies on his throne and commands his royal army by the help of his messengers. Still from there he gains great victories. His foes still cry under the feet of Ashurbanipal's men, and towns crumble if he so commands. But he knows his time is coming. He knows that death is reaching its tendrils at him; he watched it happen to his wife. He knows of the fate that awaits him after every corner; he can feel it in his aching bones. Many others also know, both enemies and allies alike.
The tension is high. Everyone knows there shall be a struggle after the death of Ashurbanipal.
The people of Assyria pray for their gods to keep their beloved king alive longer.
But even they know it is vain, for the gods do not hear their prayers, and the situation of the king is getting worse with every day.

Aram-Ashur is also waiting; he is waiting for his time to rise.
He is scheming, because when the king dies, Aram will be ready, and he will do everything in his will to get the power over the government, or will he? Unlike his foes, he does not own a vast army, but instead he does have his cunning and subterfuge, for he is the leader of the secret guard of the king.

Who shall reign after the king, remains the question?
Last edited by Lord Anzius on Sat Feb 28, 2009 8:13 pm, edited 3 times in total.
To copy reality is good... But to create reality is much, much better.
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Fri Dec 19, 2008 4:52 pm
scasha says...



Hey! Here's my review as promised! Sorry if it sounds harsh, I just want to help you become a better writer! Let's do this thing!
Lord Anzius wrote: Veni Vidi Vici
[s] I came, I saw, I conquered
[/s] I recommend not translating it. Most people know what it means and even if they don't, languages without translations are really cool :-)
Julius Caesar



Prologue :

Assurbanipal. The greatest king that has ever ruled over Assyria. He who has created the first systematical library and he who conquered the lands of the enemies. This feels much too telling for my taste. I will make a longer note about it in my overall review

He was great find a new word, you already used it and it feels repetitive , but now even he has been affected by mother time. Mother Time should be capitalized

Now You put the word "now" in the paragraph above. Try not to repeat words he lies in his throne and commands his royal army from there. Still from there Again, you're repeating phrases he gains great victories How? Against who? This is very unclear and confusing , but he knows his time is coming Time is coming to die? Be specific because vaguity can ruin a piece ... And so do many others. Elipses are the bane of good writing. Please do not try to use them at all. Cut them out. The tension is high, since everyone knows there shall be a struggle after the death of Ashurbanipal, the people of Assyria pray for their gods to keep their beloved king alive longer. But even they know it is vain. Phew! That was a very long sentence! Split up your ideas into smaller ones so the ideas flow better

Aram-Ashur also is waiting, he is waiting for his time, he waits, for when the king dies Aram will be ready, and he will do all in his will to get the power. Again, split up your ideas. We're looking for fluidity But unlike his foes insert comma he does not own a vast army, but he does have his cunning and superfudge, for he is the leader of the secret guard of the king.

Who shall reign after the king?


Overall:

The Good: Interesting Idea! It sounds like this could turn into a good story!

Stuff that could use some work:

A Book Summary: That's pretty much what your prologue sounded like to me. It's as though you summerized the most important parts of the story in a couple of paragraphs. Personally, I would have rathered you start telling the story from it's beginning. This is a good framework for you, but I don't think it works at all as a prologue/ I don't think you should have a prologue at all.

What Exactly Can you Do then?: Okay, personally, I would start showing us the story from where the king lies dying in his bed. And I say "showing" because you were telling the story above. You didn't put in details, description, or dialogue. As a result, your characters seem flat and I don't feel for them at all. Show us how the king suffers from his helplessness, from his disease. Make us have sympathy for him. You laid out exactly what the problem was, but I don't feel as though I want to continue reading it. Pull your readers in with great characters and dialogue! Show us a story.

Show us a Story: Like I said above, you are telling us a story, not showing us one. Telling is like when you say "The king was sick". Instead, you should show us this by saying. "The king coughed, blood spewing from his lips, the hacking sound of his breath echoing throughout the hall. Choking for air, he motioned with a limp wave of his hand for his attending servant to fetch water". See the difference? Try to do that with the entirety of this piece!

Other than that, well done! If you have any questions, PM me!




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Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:40 pm
canislupis says...



Hi there! Here it goes:
Veni Vidi Vici
I came, I saw, I conquered

Eh… I know this has been said already, but get rid of the translation. It’s distracting (Especially since it’s bolded) and pretty unnecessary to the story. Also, I was confused, thinking that the story was going to be about Julius Caesar. I think you should make it clear how the quote is relevant to the story early on, as well as making it clear from the beginning that it is not about Julius Caesar. (I know the first word is his name, but it was still confusing….) :)
Ashurbanipal. The greatest king that has ever ruled over Assyria. He who has created the first systematical library and he who conquered the lands of his lowly foes.

This is telling rather than showing, but also is a bit confusion because of the incomplete sentence at the beginning. I’d like a little description of his features as well.
He knows that death is reaching its tendrils at him, he saw it happen to his wife.

The comma after ‘him’ should be a semi-colon, methinks.
acking bones.

“acking” should be “aching”
The tension is high.

Another example where you are telling rather than showing.
But even they know it is vain, For the gods do not hear their prays,

“For” doesn’t need to be capitalized.
Aram-Ashur is also waiting, he is waiting for his time to rise.

This is repetitive. The comma should also be a semi-colon in my opinion.
will do all in his will to get the power.

Wait…. Huh? How about: “will do everything in his power to gain control of XX.” Better? Change it so it works for you.
but he does have his cunning and superfudge, for he is the leader of the secret guard of the king.

“Superfudge”??? I think you might have meant “Subterfuge.”
Who shall reign after the king?

At this point, why should we care? I have no reason to like the king or worry about what will happen to the power. We’re getting back to one of the first rules of story-telling: Show instead of Tell. Instead of telling us to care, MAKE us care. Instead of making three-word statements describing what is happening, tell us how the kings looks, how he feels. Describe his expression, where he is lying, etc.
This also reads the tiniest bit like a history book. The point of historical fiction is to draw the reader into something from the past, and at the moment, you aren’t quite there. The grammar and other issues need to be straightened out, and I think overall you could use a good edit. After that, you need to go back and look at characters, description, and plot.
This is also a theme that has been used before, so I am interested to see how you make this your own. PM me when you post the next bit and I’ll be happy to review it.
Hope this helps!
~Lupis




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Mon Jan 12, 2009 8:21 pm
Rosendorn says...



Hiya! Nice to have some history to read.

Veni Vidi Vici
I came, I saw, I conquered
- Julius Caesar


This made me think it was set in Rome. Seeing a different kingdom name threw me off.

Mother Time.


This had better be explained later on, since usually it's "Father Time."

Today he lies on his throne and commands his royal army by the help of his messengers.


"By" should be "with."

The people of Assyria pray for their gods to keep their beloved king alive longer.

But even they know it is vain, for the gods do not hear their prays, and the situation of the king is getting worse by the day.


Put these two lines together, not in separate paragraphs.

Aram-Ashur is also waiting; he is waiting for his time to rise.

He is scheming, because when the king dies...


"He is" gets a little repetitive here. You could rework that to freshen it up.

Who shall reign after the king, remains a question?


Delete the question mark. It's not needed.

Overall: I did not mind the telling here, even though I was prepared for it. When setting up the background one often has to switch to telling just to get all the information in without dumping it. This, at least, doesn't distract from the story, since the story hasn't started yet. It just adds a new dymention. But since it is telling, I can't really comment on any characters and the like.

I will saw, however, that if this was the prologue of a book I picked up, I would read the book.

Keep it up!
A writer is a world trapped in a person— Victor Hugo

Ink is blood. Paper is bandages. The wounded press books to their heart to know they're not alone.




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Thu Jan 15, 2009 3:51 pm
melkor says...



Righto...Let's keep this short...

I'll make five points..

JUST FIVE!! (a nd please note, I'm not one for grammar suggestions, being terrible at it myself:P)


While you, can read, and hopefully integrate my suggesttions into the story...

1.Totally agree with the above...cut the translations, it makes it much more epic.

2. I know you're trying to be epic here, beleive me I do it myself quite often...but you really need to give me more of a....well more of a kick...

Starting with hard facts is like being beat round the face with a textbook before you start reading..

Why not start with a description of the king from his own view?


Perhaps have him looking in a mirrior, contrating his appearance with his accomplishments?
3.I don't mean to be rude, but I hated what you did here...

"The people of Assyria pray for their gods to keep their beloved king alive longer.

But even they know it is vain, for the gods do not hear their prays, and the situation of the king is getting worse by the day. "

It was just so.......arupbt.....please try teasing out the tension a little bit more...


4."Aram-Ashur is also waiting; he is waiting for his time to rise."

AGAIN! BAM WITH THE TEXTBOOK!
Who the hell is ara,-ashur and why should I care?


5."Who shall reign after the king, remains a question?" putting aside the terrible grammar, I don't like this either.....Yes, leaving with a question can be quite effective, but not when it's so short!

Build up the evidence which will allow us to answer this question, and then hit us with it...





Argghhhhh!!!!

MELKOR, IS NOT IMPRESSED!!!

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Thu Feb 26, 2009 6:36 pm
Demeter says...



Moi. I'm really sorry that you have had to wait this for so long! Sorry sorry sorry. But here I am now.

Ashurbanipal. The greatest king that has ever ruled over Assyria. He who [s]has[/s] created the first systematical library and he who conquered the lands of his lowly foes.


He was mighty, but now even he has been affected by Mother Time. A little awkwardly phrased, methinks.


Today he lies (not 'sits'? on his throne and commands his royal army by the help of his messengers. Still from there (also a bit awkward) he gains great victories. His foes still cry under the feet of Ashurbanipal's men, [s]that[/s] towns crumble if he so commands, but he knows his time is coming. He knows that death is reaching its tendrils at him; he saw it happen to his wife. (The sentence ends a little abruptly.) He knows of the fate that awaits him after every corner, he can feel it in his aching bones. Many others also know that.

The tension is high. Everyone knows there shall be a struggle after the death of Ashurbanipal.

The people of Assyria pray for their gods to keep their beloved king alive longer.

But even they know it is in vain, for the gods do not hear their prays, and the situation of the king is getting worse by the day.


Aram-Ashur is also waiting; he is waiting for his time to rise.

He is scheming, because when the king dies, Aram will be ready, and he will do all in his will to get the power over the government, or will he?.I'd ditch that 'or will he'. But unlike his foes, he does not own a vast army; [s]but[/s] instead, he [s]does have[/s] has his cunning and subterfuge, for he is the leader of the secret guard of the king.

In this paragraph, you used the word 'he' pretty often. Are all of them really necessar? Could you replace some of them)


Who shall reign after the king[s], remains a question[/s]?



Alright. I made some edits there, as you can see. Your idea is interesting, I like how you're writing about something that has actual historical background. Been alert at History classes? ;)

Your text flows quite nicely; your main problem, I think, is only that you have some awkwardly phrased sentences and images. It's not that big a problem, you'll learn to notice it yourself if you read your text out loud.

I don't mind the telling here – after all, this is only the prologue and some people might not have the faintest idea about Ashurbanipal, so it's only good to have a little explanatory prologue here. I haven't read the following parts, but I'm pretty sure that you've made them a little more story-like. You could've, however, told us a little more about Aram-Ashur – whether he's a brother, a cousin, etc.

All in all, I would probably keep reading (that's not a "I'll review all the parts as fast as a lightning!" promise, but I think I will eventually read more :)), and remember to use your senses when you're writing. Every one of them. Even the sixth! :P

Hope this helped.


Demeter
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Sat Feb 28, 2009 6:16 pm
Evi says...



*Evi alert*

I love short stuff. :D It makes me happy.

Veni Vidi Vici
I came, I saw, I conquered
- Julius Caesar

I think that's a very cool way to start it. Sure, it might not have a whole lot to do with your story/subject/characters, but it's cool anyway.

Prologue :

Ashurbanipal. The greatest king that has ever ruled over Assyria. He who has created the first systematical library and he who conquered the lands of his lowly foes.

He was mighty, but now even he has been affected by Mother Time. Mother Time? Isn't it Father Time? If this 'Mother Time' character is significant, you can keep it-- but otherwise I think you just made a little mistake.

Today he lies on his throne and commands his royal army by the help of his messengers. Still from there he gains great victories. His foes still cry under the feet of Ashurbanipal's men, that towns crumble if he so commands, but he knows his time is coming.


This sentence is a little confusing. Perhaps: His foes still cry under the feel of Ashurbanipal's men, and towns still crumble if he so commands. But he knows his time is coming. It seems to flow better, and I don't think your punctuation was correct anyway.

He knows that death is reaching its tendrils at him; he [s]saw [/s]watched it happen to his wife. He knows of the fate that awaits him after every corner, (semi-colon here, not comma) he can feel it in his aching bones. Many others also know. Who are these 'others'? Are they glad his time is coming? You could expand on this statement.
The tension is high. Everyone knows there shall be a struggle after the death of Ashurbanipal.
The people of Assyria pray for their gods to keep their beloved king alive longer.
But even they know it is vain, for the gods do not hear their prayers, and the situation of the king is getting worse by the day. '...is getting worse as the days go on' pehaps?

Aram-Ashur is also waiting; he is waiting for his time to rise.
He is scheming, because when the king dies (comma) Aram will be ready, and he will do [s]all[/s] everything in his will to get the power over the government, or will he?.


Aram will be ready to do everything in his will to claim power over the government. Or will he? The 'or will he' is a bit cliched, methinks. Surely you can show conflict with this 'Aram' guy in a bit more creative way?

But unlike his foes, he does not own a vast army, but he does have his cunning and subterfuge, for he is the leader of the secret guard of the king.


You use 'but' twice in one sentence-- try rewording, m'dear. How about: Unlike his foes, he does not control a vast army, but he does...


Who shall reign after the king, remains a question?


'Remains the question', would be more powerful.

:arrow: So, this is a nice little prologue. A bit of an info-dump, but what can you do? You've captured my attention in such a short piece, which can be quite a feat in itself. However, to get a taste of your story I'll have to check out the other parts. I'm on it!

~Evi
"Let's eat, Grandma!" as opposed to "Let's eat Grandma!": punctuation saves lives.




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Sun Mar 01, 2009 8:02 pm
Winter's Twelfth Night says...



Hey Lord Anzius! You've got quite an interesting prologue here.

Nitpicks:
He who has created the first systematical library and he who conquered the lands of his lowly foes.

Take out "has" after "He who". It helps the flow of the sentence.

Today he lies on his throne and commands his royal army by the help of his messengers.

He lies on his throne? Do you mean sit? Also, I think you should say "...with the help of his messengers." Instead of "...by the help of his messengers."

But he knows his time is coming.

Try to avoid starting sentences with "But"

He knows that death is reaching its tendrils at him; he watched it happen to his wife.

Perhaps you could say "...death is reaching its tendrils towards him..." instead of at him.

He knows of the fate that awaits him after every corner; he can feel it in his aching bones.

I liked this sentence and the one before it. They are very descriptive. However, instead of saying "...after every corner..." you could say "...at every corner..."

Many others also know...

This sentence and the ones after should probably be a new paragraph.

Questions:
Just a few quick questions:
I. Who is your main character going to be? It is not clear from your prologue.
II. When exactly does this take place?
III. Well this isn't really a question, but you did lots of telling. Try and show us some of the information through dialogue or description.

Overall:
I thought this was OK. It was short. You could add lots more details, but it's a good start. Keep working!

If you have any questions please PM me!
-Winter
Mamillius: Merry or sad shall’t be?
Hermione: As merry as you will.
Mamillius: A sad tale’s best for winter. I have one
Of sprites and goblins.

The Winter's Tale




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Mon Mar 02, 2009 5:57 am
Lord Anzius says...



I. Aram-ashur
II. Assyria, turkey, egypt, babylonia...
To copy reality is good... But to create reality is much, much better.
-Giuseppe Verdi-




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Tue Mar 31, 2009 7:30 pm
KailaMarie says...



Hi, I'm finally here to review. So sorry it took so long!

This was really good. I didn't find much wrong with it, and it sets up the scene for more to come after it.

he will do everything in his will to get the power over the government, or will he?
I would take out the "over the government" part. I think it flows better if it just said power.

Who shall reign after the king, remains the question?
Take out the question mark.

Other than those two things, I didn't see anything wrong. I liked this a lot, actually. I like the atmosphere it sets up. Good job. I'm off to do chapter one now!
... :D ...
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Tue Jun 16, 2009 10:46 pm
JabberHut says...



Hello! Sorry it's so late. I kept getting distracted. XD

So what I want to say has been pretty much said. I don't know what else I can do besides give examples and encouragement. ^_^

Your piece here is not a prologue but a book summary. When I pick your novel up from the shelf, this is what I would read on the back. This is what makes me want to buy it. I think your novel would do better without this exerpt in front of it. ^^

Now considering that, let's talk about prologues. (I'll be referencing this in case you wish to read more about it.)

Prologues are hard to write. A lot of times, the prologues are either switched to chapter one or just scrapped completely; so what makes a prologue a prologue?

They give an idea of the story, unrelated to the first chapter, that makes sense by the time the reader finishes it. As the link says, it's like starting your story twice. The first chapter has the main character(s) and begins the novel at the real starting point. Novels have a start to finish. Chapter one is the start. The prologue is different from the novel's plot map.

The prologue can show a scene/event with the villain and his/her cronies. It has to serve some purpose for it; the reader should benefit from seeing this scene before the novel actually begins. The prologue can also be a significant part of the main character's past or the main character's future after the novel is finished. Prologues don't start the novel; they're a mystery piece, and the reader has to figure out where that puzzle piece goes in the novel.

As I said before, your prologue is more of a book summary. Though it does kind of show the past, the time before the novel takes place. It shows the main character's growing ambitions over his lifetime; however, that's not exactly what a prologue is. You're on the right track, but now we have to buff it up and make it more prologue-ish. That or just completely scrap it. I've scrapped plenty of prologues to the point where I just ignore them. XD

I'm with canislupis in that I didn't have much care for this piece. I'd scrap it unless you can think of a way to improve it and attract your readers? XD It's a great book summary though, and after reading this, I may just pick it off the shelf at the store; but if I started reading the novel and read this, I probably wouldn't be too pleased. ^^

If you have any questions, I'm more than willing to assist! I'll move on to chapter one now, and hopefully, I can help you more there. ^_^

Keep writing!

Jabber, the One and Only!
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Sun Jun 21, 2009 10:26 am
Jess says...



Personally, I think it's great! Very short, so I hope you're adding to it. You need to show more and tell less. Get some dialogue in it. Put a conversation about the situation in there and have them inform through speech what needs to be told to the reader. You need more action in there, or the reader will end up getting bored. Overal, interesting and the start of what I hope will be a great book. :D







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