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The Isle of Gold



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Sun Jun 17, 2018 5:55 pm
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mellifera says...



YES THE HORSE QUESTIONS @soundofmind lol my time has come

I mean, Carter loves all the horses, but Reese is the horse he rides most of the beginning and the first one who is introduced. Reese and Villa (the horse Gideon will end up riding) are both Mérens, so they're both black (Villa has a star on her face though).

Carter has grown up around horses, and his life is very horsey. He's very good at taming them, slightly less so at training only because Bazzoli has a professional who always comes in, but Carter has been able to train several of them both on his own and ones the professional is working with. Bazzoli often makes Carter take care of any unruly horses because he gets so mad, whereas Carter could spend days working with one horse just to calm them down because he's very patient. The horses at Bazzoli's farm all respond excellently to Carter, with only a few of them refusing to let go of their inherent stubbornness or aggression (which Carter doesn't mind handling anyway).

He's great at riding horses! He gets on whenever he can and works them, especially if nobody else is at the time. He has never done any sort of showing though, because Bazzoli won't let him (not that he really wants to either though haha. He doesn't really like how stressed shows make the horses). He has alllllll the knowledge (jkjk he has a lot though). And horse books!! That's a good question, I hadn't thought of that :p he probably used a lot of horse books to when he was learning how to read and stuff (probably demanded Shiloh get horse books for him because she taught him a lot. lil' Carter demanding horse books is now my favourite so that's A Thing now).

You're helping me flesh out Carter and his horses so much xD he's probably helped! I don't think too many would have been born, Bazzoli isn't much of a breeder but he has bred his horses before, so I have no doubt Carter would have helped a vet! He'd probably be SUPER anxious about his pregnant horses and had some parental moments aha. He's probably taken care of some injuries too? Maybe not quite lacerations or Big Bad wounds, but that's a good point! He probably knows some little medical tricks.

you can live your horse phase through Carter! lol, don't worry, I've been stuck in a horse phase my whole life and I don't think it's going anywhere anytime soon ;D
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Mon Jun 18, 2018 2:59 am
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soundofmind says...



I'm loving Carter all the more now that I am armed with this knowledge - that being his knowledge of horses. And also yes I demand more child Carter demanding horse books. That sounds ADORABLE. 100%

Carter being patient with horses is gonna win my heart HHHh. Is he that patient with people?

And yes I will live thru Carter. My horse lovin' boy fave
  





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Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:39 pm
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mellifera says...



this is tempting me to write some lil shorts of baby Carter demanding horse books.

IS HE? I mean, humans make him more panicky than patient, but yeah, I suppose he is pretty patient with people o:

wow this took me a long time to respond to oops
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Tue Jun 19, 2018 6:44 pm
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soundofmind says...



lololol it’s all good

IF YOU MAKE THAT SHORT THO TAG MEEEEEE I WANNA SEE
  





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Tue Jul 03, 2018 1:38 am
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mellifera says...



⚔️ C H A P T E R S ⚔️


First Draft

Spoiler! :

The Hero's Brother (1.1)
The Hero's Brother (1.2)
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The Hero's Brother (2.1)
The Hero's Brother (2.2)
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The Hero's Brother (3.1)
The Hero's Brother (3.2)
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The Hero's Brother (4.1)
The Hero's Brother (4.2)
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The Hero's Brother (5.1)
The Hero's Brother (5.2)
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The Hero's Brother (6.1)
The Hero's Brother (6.2)
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The Hero's Brother (7.1)
The Hero's Brother (7.2)
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The Hero's Brother (8.1)
The Hero's Brother (8.2)
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The Hero's Brother (9.1)
The Hero's Brother (9.2)
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The Hero's Brother (10.1)
The Hero's Brother (10.2)
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The Hero's Brother (11.1)
The Hero's Brother (11.2)
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The Hero's Brother (12.1)
The Hero's Brother (12.2)
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The Hero's Brother (13.1)
The Hero's Brother (13.2)
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PART II

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The Hero's Brother (14)
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The Hero's Brother (15)
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The Hero's Brother (16.1)
The Hero's Brother (16.2)
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The Hero's Brother (17)
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The Hero's Brother (18)
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The Hero's Brother (19.1)
The Hero's Brother (19.2)
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The Hero's Brother (20.1)
The Hero's Brother (20.2)
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The Hero's Brother (21.1)
The Hero's Brother (21.2)
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The Hero's Brother (22)
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The Hero's Brother (23.1)
The Hero's Brother (23.2)
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The Hero's Brother (24.1)
The Hero's Brother (24.2)
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The Hero's Brother (25)
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The Hero's Brother (26)
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The Hero's Brother (27.1)
The Hero's Brother (27.2)
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The Hero's Brother (28)
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The Hero's Brother (29.1)
The Hero's Brother (29.2)
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The Hero's Brother (30.1)
The Hero's Brother (30.2)
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The Hero's Brother (31)
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The Hero's Brother (32)
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The Hero's Brother (33)
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The Hero's Brother (34)
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The Hero's Brother (35.1)
The Hero's Brother (35.2)
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The Hero's Brother (36)
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The Hero's Brother (37.1)
The Hero's Brother (37.2)
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The Hero's Brother (38)
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The Hero's Brother (39.1)
The Hero's Brother (39.2)
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The Hero's Brother (40.1)
The Hero's Brother (40.2)
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The Hero's Brother (41.1)
The Hero's Brother (41.2)
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The Hero's Brother (42)


Second Draft


Spoiler! :
Act I

Chapter One
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Chapter Two
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Chapter Three
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Chapter Four
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Chapter Five
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Chapter Six
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Chapter Seven
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Chapter Eight
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Chapter Nine
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Chapter Ten
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Chapter Eleven
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Chapter Twelve
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Chapter Thirteen
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Chapter Fourteen

Act II

Chapter Fifteen [Gideon]
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Chapter Sixteen [Carter]
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Chapter Seventeen [Valérie]
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Chapter Eighteen [Gideon]
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Chapter Nineteen [Valérie]
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Chapter Twenty [Gideon]
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Chapter Twenty-One [Carter]
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Chapter Twenty-Two [Valérie]
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Chapter Twenty-Three [Gideon]
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Chapter Twenty-Four [Valérie]
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Chapter Twenty-Five [Carter]
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Chapter Twenty-Six [Gideon]
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Chapter Twenty-Seven [Valérie]
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Chapter Twenty-Eight [Carter]
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Chapter Twenty-Nine [Gideon]
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Chapter Thirty [Carter]

Act III

Chapter Thirty-One [Valérie]
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Chapter Thirty-Two [Whisper]
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Chapter Thirty-Three [Finn]
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Chapter Thirty-Four [Valérie]
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Chapter Thirty-Five [Gideon]
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Chapter Thirty-Six [Valérie]
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Chapter Thirty-Seven [Whisper]
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Chapter Thirty-Eight [Carter]
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Chapter Thirty-Nine [Valérie]
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Chapter Forty [Whisper]
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Chapter Forty-One [Finn]
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Chapter Forty-Two [Carter]
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Chapter Forty-Three [Gideon]
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Chapter Forty-Four [Valérie]
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Chapter Forty-Five [Carter]
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Chapter Forty-Six [Finn]
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Chapter Forty-Seven [Carter]
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Mon Jul 29, 2019 4:10 am
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mellifera says...



⚔️ R E V I S I O N & S E C O N D D R A F T ⚔️


Me? Updating this thread? It's more likely than you think.

This section is under construction! I'll be adding things periodically, but this is what I have in terms of notes for revision so far.

Spoilers abound below for the story as it is all the notes I'm accumulating for the second draft (also warning it's very cluttered and messy right now). Yes, this includes that parts I haven't even posted yet in the publishing centre (but they've been up since I finished them in my LMS Blizzard Thread!)

Main Notes:
Spoiler! :
🐈First and foremost: stop forgetting koshar holy jeez

🐴Condense beginning/part one, or as I've called it, the "finding Shiloh" arc. I planned originally for Shiloh official introduction to the story to be the big event to happen in the middle of the story, but I think the beginning is too slow and the ending is too fast for what I tried to put in.

🐴The beginning is getting cut. I'm a little surprised it never got mentioned, but the beginning isn't very strong at all. It doesn't open with a hook. While I like that Shiloh was introduced before the note was discovered by Carter, as it gave more reason to care about her going missing, I don't think the lead-up to it is compelling enough to warrant its existence. I think Carter's character is strong/emotional enough to pull this off in a way the reader will still be alarmed by Shiloh's sudden disappearance, but we'll see.

❌Resolve the Coterie subplots better, because right now it's terrible and got completely neglected once the "rescue Carter!" plot ended and the Capital section began.

💕Carter/Gideon needs,,,, help.

❌On a similar vein, the "rescue Carter!" plot also needs lots of suturing. After the dissecting and rearranging.

⚔️I'm thinking that Adrienne attacks Carter and Gideon after they've escaped the torture room, rather than having her just appear there alone. They escape, but someone notices they're missing (and probably any bodies Gideon's dropped), and Adrienne heads off a recovery party (of sorts). She doesn't come alone this time, though she can't come with enough to unbelievably overwhelm them because Gideon is not Captain America and cannot drop them all by tossing a shield and then taking off. So, Gideon probably takes one or two out (this is also an opportune moment to display his fighting prowess, as it's been sampled in the past but not? I believe? to full extent in such a extreme situation), but he gets so distracted and channeled on Adrienne (the irrational, emotional side of him takes over because he's never been able to shake it like a trained assassin should. He hates Adrienne, and it rules him), that he becomes unable to protect Carter. Obviously, not horrendously, as they still must make it to safety, but it's enough. Gideon still kills Adrienne (ruthlessly, as in the first draft. I don't think their history allows him to kill her with anything but the kind of scary-coldness a killer displays because that's what she made him), but then slowly builds up guilt because Carter was hurt due to his own fury. Gideon's getting crushed by guilt over Carter, I think right now is a better time for Carter to really exercise how understanding he can be when someone else is in distress (as it's,,,, pretty terrible that Carter goes from thinking Gideon hates him to, two seconds later, kissing him. weird and p unhealthy, idk what I was thinking). This not only softens and dissolves the tension around them, but it strengthens their connection without the repetition of "I thought you hated me!" because Gideon just rescued his lil patootie and he knows better, even with his overthinking. (Maybe tone down on Gideon's guilt somewhat? Accurate, but maybe a little too much? I'm not sure, really. Either way, this is a vulnerable moment for him. He's finally allowing himself to be open with all this junk he's been holding in. Let him open up without having to comfort Carter. Let Carter comfort him without believing he's the cause of his pain, he's perceptive enough to realise the weight of Gideon's trauma and sensitive enough to be sympathetic about it)

🐴Three parts, rather than two? First part is essentially the "finding Shiloh and discovery/release of the magic". Second part is the payoff of all the build up to the coteries and how nasty they can be, essentially the "coterie and group separation" part. Third part is "Grand Verterre" and folding everything nasty there into the plot.

🗡️I'm thinking of twisting Malika and the Okories' role slightly. Is there anyway I can feasibly have Jemima give Isha away to them (as in selling her)? They're brokering an alliance, perhaps, as Jemima is definitely not putting her faith or stock in the fragile alliance with Corin and the Fire Forgers. Isha is too unruly and headstrong to lead the Dragon's Associates, and if she got broken in to try to conform her, she'd probably go too far to recover. Jemima knows with hindsight, by first allowing Gideon to be brought and raised in the coteries, she lost the ability to mold Isha into a more merciless and cunning leader. Anyway, Malika obviously would be able to see Isha's use to her, perhaps Malika plans to kidnap the Comtesse? Though she'd never put Isha on that kind of mission if she didn't trust her. And what about Finn, Shiloh, and Winnie? Are they, too, captured by the coterie? Which one? How do they get reunited with the others?

🐴Carter and Gideon make their way to Grand Verterre on their own, I think, rather than getting assistance from Malika. They escape the cave, maybe run into a kindly farmer and his wife who tend to their injuries? But soon they have to leave, and go to the one place on the island busy enough that they may be safe from the coteries, for a little while (which is, y'know, Grand Verterre).

🐴Please draw out Carter and Isha's magic sickness holy bonkers it's all over the place.

🐈There is so little reason for Whisper not to tell Carter about them having magic. Like,, he's your best friend. why. why everyone gotta lie to him, this sweet, poor baby boy.

🤠Finn makes more comments about weapons and how well made they are. Doesn't know why he knows so much about weapons. Nix the conversation where Isha's like "you can't forget that much of your life!" because jesus Isha, have you ever heard of Trauma or Amnesia?

❌why are there NO prisoners in any prisons shown in this story. is the support group the only trouble makers on the island?

🏹The ending makes very little sense and doesn't tie off well. While I want Gideon's arc to come full circle with his "last assassination", what he did was incredibly politically irrational and bonkers. There were no repercussions. That makes -0 sense. I don't have a solution to this yet. (as for Aelina's fate, cont'd below)

👑Aelina is not killed. Instead, the group makes a bargain with her? Safe passage off the island if Shiloh gives up the magic? There's not reason Aelina can't have some kind of knowledge that nobody else had about releasing the magic from the sphere, subsequently from Shiloh (the host) as well. This isn't a story about saving the island from Aelina's tyranny, it's about the group. None of them have any compelling motivation to attempt to fix the island's problems or coming ones should Aelina be granted full range of her power (except Whisper, but they wouldn't stay on the island if Carter was leaving, since Carter is their best friend and the closest thing to family they had beyond all those who were killed defending their escape from Grand Verterre)

🐴Shiloh released magic, and while she's essentially a conduit after what she did at the Spire by unlocking the sphere, she doesn't hold it all. It still got released. Weird things happen, like the earthquake and the gold threads around everything (are they still gold? Magic is shown for the longest time as gold, but then we see Aelina using her control/healing magic and it's red. Is the magic all trapped in the sphere gold because of how it got trapped (and who trapped it?)? Otherwise, change Aelina's magic to gold like Whisper's and change the rubies on the Memory Wall beneath the Spire to topaz.

🤠Finn's outcome stays the same.

👑Aelina has a familiar, like Whisper? Perhaps a falcon? I can't see her with a cat or dog following her around, though a bird would be pretty messy.

🗡️Really disappointed in myself for never mentioning Isha was a widow even though I've always known it. I never even IMPLIED it. All that exists of it is a meme in my meme folder.

❓One of the consistencies I've noticed for being unhappy with my stories is setting? This happened to me with two novels now that I've tried to write in a historical setting like this. I love the story and the characters, but I'm starting to wonder if a different setting would make me happier/shake up the plot for me to rediscover what I love or dislike so I can really start shaping it into a story I want to tell people. BUT WHAT KIND OF SETTING? Inquiring minds want to know (<-- it's me I want to know). (there are also historical aspects that don't fit into the plot? On the same line, contemporary works EVEN WORSE. like, the horses are non-negotiable. maybe I'll just make up someplace or something? I want this to have bigger fairy tale vibes so maybe I just need to be more vague about setting or come up with something more fantastical.

✨GUESS WHAT NEEDS A BUNCH OF HELP? THE MAGIC SYSTEM! *cries*

🐴the horses 👀


Character-Specific Notes:
Spoiler! :
🏹 Everyone liked Gideon a LOT more than I was expecting. Push him a little further in the beginning, because obviously I didn't make him enough of a bastard boy, but ultimately the fact that everyone who has read it adores him fills me with glee.
(also, his addiction needs to be handled better)

🤠 I love everyone's reaction and their exasperation with Finn so obviously I did something right.

🗡️ I was very unsure of Isha's character when I first started writing, and it showed (as I had so little in terms of her backstory). I definitely made some mistakes, particularly with who was in charge between her and Gideon. While it still has some consistency, it needs more. Isha is in charge and confident in a way that Gideon is completely not. She was raised to lead, and she wears her training like a second skin. She almost becomes a foil to Gideon (he hates the way he's grown up, he was forced into this life but not born into it, he hates what he's been trained as. Isha knows if she had grown up anywhere else, she wouldn't have the skills to protect herself and, by extent, Gideon. She was born into her life and wouldn't change that despite her distaste for her parents. She turns the thing she could have hated and chose to embrace it instead).

🐴The biggest thing I've gotten back is Carter's stuttering, which is 100% accurate and needs to be toned down. Not that it'll disappear completely, nor will his trademark "um"s. However, while I was happy with how his character was portrayed in the beginning, I feel as though I severely neglected his anxiety and it became inconsistent towards the end. The beginning will still be heightened, because Shiloh disappearing, Gideon and Isha appearing, coteries suddenly being a Thing in his life, and having to leave everything familiar he's ever known behind? of course he's going to be freaking out. But he adjusts. I think I executed this poorly though.

🐈I made Whisper a lot less interesting then they deserved in the beginning, which is entirely my fault. I want to give them more motivation for joining the group too, because right now, I can't help but feel the way they follow Carter is a little flat? Or their character needs to be adjusted slightly. They don't exactly live well off in the village, getting openly criticised. Also, it makes very little sense for them to be living alone in the village. Where did they get the money to buy a house? What are they doing to EARN money? While I don't think many men would be lining up to try to make them their bride (because, from a societal standpoint, Whisper doesn't adhere to the norm in any form), does the heteronormative, "women need to land a husband and raise a family" standard ever get brought up against them (since they are afab)? Paranoia should also be deeply ingrained in them as well, based on their own backstory and where they come from.
(I also feel that I kind of ruined their lineage and how it played into the story, but I also don't know how to utilise it better, because they are not trained to be in any position of power and don't want it, and it's not like anybody except the support group will even rally behind them to do so. It exists right now, but it's just sort of floating there without much purpose)

🌿I think Shiloh needs a little more introduction before she's brought back into the plot, but at the same time, I'm trying to shorten that whole section, so we'll see. Since one of the driving motivators behind the story was originally how Carter was the brother of a more traditionally "chosen one" or "heroic" character, I want to expound on that more than I previously did. Shiloh is a healer and has strong opinions, which was already displayed. But she's headstrong, she's kind, she is morally good and has heroic qualities. But it's also her biggest weakness: she's protective of Carter to a fault. She dislikes Gideon because he struggles with addiction even though he was forced into it because using drugs is traditionally "bad" and only done by bad people. Her heroic qualities, that Carter is known to think admirably of early on, are later turned on their head to the point where Carter begins to push her away because she's trying so hard to be the "hero" and doing things for "the greater good" (lying to Carter, because she's "protecting" him, humiliating and scorning Gideon to "get over himself" because he is, in her mind, a killer and addict). I think I still need to shine light on her good qualities, because the first impression (besides her and Gideon's soft reunion scene) of her is anger and seemingly blind fury and disgust. In another story, she would be the protagonist, she would be the Chosen One, she would be the one at the head of all this, but she made so many mistakes and had so little basis for what a hero was beyond stories that she ignored the reality of what she was doing to everyone around her. I believe strongly that, if this story was about Shiloh and not Carter, she would have saved the island from what Aelina means to make of it, and it would have been your traditional "saving the world" and "chosen one" (albeit, with an active character to head it off) story. But since it's not, because she makes those mistakes and she is forced to realise what she's done to the entire situation and people she cares about, she's knocked down several pegs to the point where, by the end, she is more worried about amending what she did wrong and being close to the people she cares about rather than any world saving.
I believe in a universe that doesn't care and people that do.
  





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Fri Oct 11, 2019 9:59 pm
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mellifera says...



⚔️ F U N F A C T S ⚔️


I'm reminiscing because I've started planning the second draft so I'm going to make everyone reminisce with me (or rather, whoever is still reading this after a YEAR lol).

*spoilers obviously*

-Fabella is the only horse in the story that is based off of a horse I work with. the horse's name is Favorita and she's v tall and lithe and she's a chestnut (also she is v hoppy and energetic)

-Carter was supposed to die originally. He was supposed to kiss Gideon and then sacrifice himself (for what? how? who knows I just planned on killing him).
oh also then he really WAS going to die in this draft and Whisper was going to revive him??? just found that lil scratched out fact in my notes.

-Finn was not originally a character and I honestly don't remember how he came into the story but he did. He also was not supposed to have a horse and there was going to be a running joke about it but then I was writing and Napoleon just kinda,,, was there.

-as a follow up Carter was supposed to escape the coterie (???) and then find a horse wandering out in the trees and he was going to tame her (she wasn't WILD as in undomesticated but she also didn't belong to anyone??) and call her Seraphina but it was going to be too much effort with not enough payoff in the actual plot (also unrealistic why would he just find a domesticated horse in the wild). Also, then Finn was supposed to get Reese so he didn't have to ride with Isha and everyone was going to be like "haha the divines sent a horse cause they were tired of watching you ride with isha".

-Isha's name was originally Anna.

-Actually in the early stages, Whisper didn't exist either. It was just Gideon/Carter/Isha looking for Shiloh.

-I wrote down a bunch of dumb pick-up lines for Gideon and then never used them and even though that makes me sad, it doesn't fit his character (which is TRAGIC and I'm kinda mad about it).

-Isha and Gideon were originally brother and sister but then I was like "there's too many siblings!" and instead they're like,,, siblings but by bond not blood.

-Gideon called Carter "duckling" but it was weird because he'd still call him that when he was being Superb Grump so,,,, odd.

-there were FIVE different ideas for what the relic in the Spire did.

-I s2g I wrote a section about Shiloh taking care of Sick Baby Carter when he was like, five or something, but I can't find it, so rip I guess. anyway Carter almost died when he was five (or something) because he got heckin' sick.

-glad nobody questioned Shiloh and Carter's parents not being there because the reason was that I forgot they were supposed to have parents until like, halfway through (actually around chapter 12 cause I think that's when Carter and Gideon have that Moment where Carter reveals his parents died in a shipwreck).

-I don't know if I'll ever be able to work it in but Isha chose her name because she hated Valérie and Isha was the name of a heroine in a story she found! so, she asked Gideon to call her that and he was like "cool".

-on a similar thread Finn chose his name because he heard someone talking about fish fins and he was like "that's neat!" because he's a nerd.

-Gideon was supposed to accidentally hurt Carter and then get really ashamed and scared but I was like "hm that's a Healthy Relationship Dynamic" and nixed it (not that I did much better ANYWAY lol).
I believe in a universe that doesn't care and people that do.
  





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Fri Dec 06, 2019 3:49 am
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mellifera says...



I said I would be updating this sometimes maybe since NaNo ended, and while it had only been 5 days and I only planned on doing this during like, milestones or whatever, I also just wrote what is the parallel to this chapter (it is also 29 actually lol), and I'm actually reeling a bit because it was Real Fluffy (also really angsty because Gideon's telling Carter about his Trauma), and it's,,, such a stark to the way this played out in the first draft?

First Draft:

“Can we stop a minute?” Carter asked, voice soft. Gideon glanced over in time to see Carter’s gaze travelling up from his leg. Gideon scowled.

“No,” he said. It sounded more like a growl, and Gideon’s chest grew constricted when Carter drew away. He hunched his shoulders, as if trying to make himself smaller, and Gideon glanced away, trying to soften. “We have to be getting close to an entrance soon.” He wasn’t sure if he sounded any friendlier than he had a moment ago.


Second Draft:

“You’re not there anymore,” he said, voice not coming out quite how he meant it.

Somehow, it made Carter smile.

“We should keep moving. For a little while. Then we’ll rest, I promise,” he tried again. What if he came across as too bossy, too focused on something that wasn’t their wellbeing?

But Carter nodded and didn’t let go of his hand as they set off again.


First Draft:

“I could be dead now,” Carter said. He made it sound conversational, and Gideon’s heart palpitated. “I mean, um. Well, you and Isha and Whisper. Finn. It was probably the safest, um. Safest place for me.” Gideon could see the second his expression dropped. He tried to concentrate on the dirt smeared across Carter’s cheek, so he didn’t have to look at his crushed look. “You really don’t, um. You really dislike me with you, don’t you? Um, really dislike… um, me.”

Gideon stopped so abruptly he had to bite back a yelp of pain that tried to escape his throat. He gurgled, a strangled, strange noise that bounced off the cavern walls. Carter paused and turned to face him, and Gideon tried not to openly gape at him. “You think I don’t like you?” Gideon asked, blinking.

Carter shrunk farther back into his shoulders and shrugged awkwardly. There was a distant dripping noise from somewhere else in the cave. “I mean- um, yeah? I’m really inconvenient, I don’t know how to, um, fight. You don’t like horses.” His brow was so deeply furrowed Gideon worried it might get stuck there. “You haven’t- um well, given me reason to think otherwise.”

Thinking back- oh. Gideon hadn’t, had he? Had he always been so abrasive to Carter? Yes. Too cruel, too harsh, too blunt. A weapon.

“Carter, I-” Gideon’s stomach turned, nausea crawling in his gut and in his throat. He tried to force himself not to look down, at the ground or at the place the brand was on Carter’s chest. “No? No, it’s- the opposite. I like you, I do, I’m just… rotten at this, I guess. Isha’s the only friend I’ve ever had? I don’t- I wasn’t raised to for this, I don’t know… I love that you love the horses so much, that you don’t know how to fight. You’re so gentle with them. I don’t know how to do that, I don’t know how to be gentle. I don’t know how-” Carter was watching him with an expression Gideon had never seen on him before and he had to swallow around a thickness in his throat. “I don’t know how to brave like you.”


Second Draft:

“I don’t mind. I like it,” he murmured, half hoping Carter wouldn’t hear him. It sent him on a spiral anyway, pulse quickening. Vertigo gripped him and he blinked it away.

Carter made a puzzled noise from the back of his throat. When he received no response, he nudged Gideon’s shoulder with his nose. “Hmm?” he prompted again.

Gideon stared upwards. “I heard you and Whisper. They were saying— it was the night after you fell asleep, after the nightmare. You almost fell over, but I… caught you. I didn’t want you to sleep on the ground.” He swallowed and tried to calm his racing heart. This was so, so unfamiliar to him, and he was so uncertain of what the hell he was doing that he hated it. “They said they didn’t think I minded you doing that. I didn’t. I don’t.”

“Oh.” Carter shifted again, as if caught between pulling away, shrinking back on himself, and staying where he was. He settled back down after a moment. “I… I, um. I like it too.”

Even as the drowsiness began to set in and his eyelids began to droop, Gideon smiled, and rested his head against Carter’s.


on one hand, Gideon was supposed to be worse in the beginning, but at least him Not Being A Bastard has paid off for his relationship with Carter. they're disasters but at least this scene is Healthier (also they don't kiss here so it's paced better too lmao)


ON THE OTHER HAND I was thinking the other day because I've come to notice that if something I writing is like, really dragging to me, or I'm just uninterested in writing it (as opposed to not feeling like writing, in general), it's usually because there's something I'm unhappy with. While this second draft is definitely better and I knew more about what was happening going into it, the beginning is still like,, not great? I only really got into it by "part two", which is where the multiple povs come in and everything starts going Wrong. And like, I'm definitely gunning to finish this because I want to work on Colonia Heights again. I'm excited to be writing Starry Veins right now, and I like this story and everything, but I'm not like... enthused about it?

And then my mind, after months of Not Weighing in on how the stakes could be higher/I could be more excited about the actual story, it went "you touch on supernatural creatures Exactly Once, and you keep adding "fae?" to your notes but not doing anything with it, so why isn't the story about Shiloh getting tangled up in some Fae realm and disappearing and the group of them having to go after her and the magic actually making sense and there actually being danger involved rather than the dumb coterie plot" and now I'm bashing my head because I do like that idea but I haven't even finished this draft yet and now it feels,,, bland.

nyeh. I have some fun ideas for the Capital sequence coming up and expanding more on Aelina's role because she's like,,, definitely one of my favourite characters, but also,,, now I feel like I actually have something substantial for the story but I'm not about to go and REWRITE the whole first sequence.

I'm kinda frustrated tbh. Everything to raise the stakes in the first section was like, off the top of my head, thrown in? feels forced? And while I think Whisper's character is more fleshed out then they were before, FINN, whom I BELIEVED WOULD BE EASIER AND WHOM I WAS EXCITED TO WRITE, has become MORE FLAT and BACKGROUND CHARACTERISH. not to mention *wiggles arms like an octopus* THE PLOT HOLES.

maybe I'm just thinking too much about Colonia Heights and Starry Veins to be invested right now. maybe I need a break from this one to reevaluate what's going on after I finish this draft. I know there are things I love about this story, and I know I love to write the characters, but it's,,, hard right now.

I think I worked so much on the characters for this draft, and expanded the lore that directly affected them, that I wasn't focused enough on the story. Which is the root of the problem. The story, and the setting. The whole reason I wanted to write this story was to focus on a character who was someone next to "The Hero" character, but wasn't "The Hero" themself, which is great and all! But I think the story and the world around it is part of the reason I'm so bored, because it's so dull and there's nothing to it. The world and story, beyond the magic, has to be richer, and maybe I need to really amp up, or change, Shiloh's role in everything so it doesn't feel like she's doing NOTHING. I need richer stuff to interact with.

I am excited about the Capital sequence though, so I just have to hold out for that, because everything's going to go way worse this time!! >:)

also holy god I did Not mean to post an update like this I was really just going to talk about the tonal difference in the Carter/Gideon scenes. but also it allowed me to sort through my thoughts! at least I did something :')
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Mon Dec 16, 2019 12:47 am
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mellifera says...



I'm at Chapter 33. At this point last draft, I was at 118k words, and now I'm at 74k, yay for cutting unimportant stuff out! on the other hand-- logical timeline of events ?? who's she

I missed two days because, even though I have two four hour car drives when I could have written, I was exhausted from my polo games out of state and just wanted to listen to the new season of The Two Princes and The Adventure Zone. however! I finished a chapter and wrote a whole new one today so. catching up? sort of.

The Capital sequence is really fun to write?? as expected lol but STILL. I wish I could figure out the beginning, because like?? I enjoy the pay-offs and building up to everything but it's just?? the getting there and setting up that's killing me I guess. STILL THINKING aBOUT FAE BECAUSE I KNOW HOW EVERYTHING WOULD BE INCORPORATED IF I DID.

Aelina is FUN to write and also she feels a little more fleshed-out this time. also scarier? I don't know. as much as I wanted Finn to be suspicious for no reason, the way everything clicks together now just makes more sense and feels smoother now? like ugh Finn WOULD be just suspicious but now he has a reason to be sketchy and while that's less funny and exciting, it develops his character more. I know I literally just said he's more flat, but he was a little better this chapter I just wrote?? It is HIS though so maybe that's why rip.
he scream though.

was this last chapter too annoyingly vague though because I didn't info-dump or explain what's going on? PERHAPS but I love it so I'll deal with it later.

Spoiler! :
Image


RIP THAT MALIKA AND HER CREW ISN'T IN THE STORY ANYMORE she was so badass and neat and I really Done Did Her Dirty in the first draft :'( maybe she will make a cameo in my pirate novel Should I Ever Return To That

also rip Gideon's bad flirting I wish I'd been able to incorporate it but Alas, it was not meant to be.
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Wed Jan 01, 2020 1:09 am
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mellifera says...



SHE'S DONE!!!

I finished the last eight chapters last night and today, because I was ready to be done. Now it's been a few minutes and I CAN'T BELIEVE I'M dONE???

maybe it's the rush from finishing, but I actually really like the conclusion this time around. The beginning: ???? but the conclusion was?? satisfying to me??? among other things *wiggles eyebrows*


I FINISHED AT 100K THOUGH I WAS REALLY TEARING MY HAIR OUT ABOUT WORD COUNT but that's 47K LESS THAN THE FIRST DRAFT SO *rolls around*


now I need to hold onto how much I loved writing the ending because I WILL FORGET AND ABANDON THIS NOVEL SO EVENTUALLY!!! I NEED TO FIGURE OUT THE BEGINNING AND REWRITE IT!!! @ FUTURE ME I DID LIKE THIS NOVEL DON'T ABANDON IT!!


memes for each of the chapters I wrote today and yesterday, because I want to reward myself:

Spoiler! :
Chapter 37:
Image


Chapter 38:
Image


Chapter 39:
Image


Chapter 40:
Image


Chapter 41:
Image


Chapter 42:
Image


Chapter 43:
Image


Chapter 44:
Image


Chapter 45:
Image


Chapter 46:
Image


Chapter 47:
Image


AND ME DECIDING TO DO THIS:

Image
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Sun May 24, 2020 8:05 pm
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mellifera says...



JK I HAVE NOT FORGOTTEN NOR EVEN CONSIDERED ABANDONING THIS NOVEL

Now that I've gotten some distance from it for a few months I'm looking back on draft two and,,, I'm actually really happy with it?? Or I should say, I'm really excited to keep working on it (hopefully soon??? but pirate novel and lms first!). PLUS I FINALLY HAVE A DANGED SETTING and I'm HOPING it'll work out stronger and everything will tie in better with my NEW IDEAS.

I think I AM going for a Fae angle because I have some ideas that slot a lot of things together really well plus angst as if I didn't have enough already. It disrupts coterie stuff but I need to actually outline it and see how things shake up before I start saying I'm definitely cutting out certain scenes (because there are many,,, that I really really like from the second draft).

I would really like more feedback on this draft but at the same time, I hate asking for so much because I already want beta readers for Colonia Heights and just,,, nyeh, this is the problem with not sticking with ONE novel project. I feel DEMANDING.

Anyway, just thinking about this project again a lot recently and?? loving it??? also pray for me because the way my ideas are spiraling they're trying to coalesce into a multi-story project but like,, THAT'S A LOT but I have ideas?? BUT IT'S TOO MUCH someone stop me.

Here are some first and last lines from my characters because it's been sitting around forever and I don't know what else to do with them (CAN YOU GUESS WHO EACH OF THEM ARE SPEAKING TO):
Carter
“Ok.”
“Ugh, stop, don’t remind me.”

Shiloh
“Valérie! What’s with trying to take off my head?”
“I think you two will be good for each other. But maybe consider making out in places that aren’t the hallway in the middle of the night?”

Whisper
“I brought you some biscuits I made this morning.”
“That sounds lovely.”

Gideon
“Show me your hands. No sudden movements.”
“Carter?”

Isha
“Are you Carter?”
“You’ll be a free man in a few hours. What do you think you’ll do first?”

Finn
“Oh, good, I thought I’d be out here all night.”
“I’m… I’m going to rest now.”
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Tue May 26, 2020 1:25 am
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EditorAndPerks says...



do you want comments to the quotes because uhmm they're all adorable people and fae ?????? ANJKNDJFNJKNGJKFN also I loved draft 2 ;_;;;;;;; :-:;;;;;;

Spoiler! :
my guesses:
Carter 1 - (hmm, his boss? or whisper)
Carter 2 - in answer to Shiloh 2
Shiloh 1 (to Isha)
Shiloh 2 - (to Carter)
Whisper 1 (to Carter)
Whisper 2 (I'm really not sure)
Gideon 1 - to Finn (Finn 1?)
Gideon 2 - (to Carter [?])
Isha 1 - (to Carter)
Isha 2 - Finn 2
Finn 1 - in answer to Gideon 1
Finn 2 - in answer to Isha 2


Also, I will never stop you from thinking about this <.< if you want feedback on new ideas, you can send me them XD but I love this story and the characters and the dedication you put into this ;-:::;;;;

also, i'm a username-changed fraey c:
The only thing we're allowed to do is to believe that we won't regret the choice we made.
- Levi Ackerman

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Tue May 26, 2020 8:32 pm
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mellifera says...



aH you spoil me :'D I put the answers in the spoiler (even though you have the draft lol)
Spoiler! :
Carter 1- ye!! it was to his boss!
Carter 2- ahaha yep!
Shiloh 1- correct!
Shiloh 2- correct!
Whisper 1- correct!
Whisper 2- in the same conversation as Isha's last line, after Finn gives his answer!
Gideon 1- actually he's talking to Carter in that one!
Gideon 2- aHa yes!
Isha 1- INCORRECT jkjk yes she is xD
Isha 2- sort of? It's to Finn, but Finn's last line isn't to any of them! ;)
Finn 1- Actually he's responding to Isha in that line!
Finn 2- No, but it's very similar to one of his last lines to Isha so close enough


I'VE BEEN THINKING ABOUT IT A LOT and I was thinking about asking if you'd be up for hearing some thoughts!! As soon as I get a chance, I'll send you some over <333 (you're seriously the best though ily thank you for being very supportive and excited about this story!!)
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Tue May 26, 2020 9:21 pm
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EditorAndPerks says...



I love these kinds of things XD so yes yes

Spoiler! :

ooooh! alright, I did alright XD
lol, for some reason I was confused by those Gideon/Finn lines XD


OOOh!! YES to that question <333 awww yay I can't wait C: I love all your ideas.
(aw you are so welcome! this is an amazing story ^^)
The only thing we're allowed to do is to believe that we won't regret the choice we made.
- Levi Ackerman

Castle Grounds Consultant
  








"Be happy, my friend; and if you obey me in this one request, remain satisfied that nothing on earth will have the power to interrupt my tranquility."
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