1. Schrodinger
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    Schrodinger Member

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    The Daeemon Heart - require plot critique

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Schrodinger, Jul 1, 2007.

    Hiya =)

    I am writting a novel atm, which serves as a prequel to a story of my friends. Which serves as explaining the actions of the progtagonist in his novel.


    The book concerns a charecter named Aren. Whose village is destroyed by a highly advanced steampunkish culture, known as the crystonian empire. (who get there power from an artifact known simply as the crystal).

    He watches his town slaughtered, and sees his mother raped and killed before him.

    After the destruction he collapses (and heres an alein voice in his head of a woman) and is found by a traveling circus, they become his family for years. With one member named weyland, becoming like a brother to him.

    As the story progresses, he starts an almost rebel cause against the crystonaians with weyland. Doing it out of virtue to bring the opressers down.

    As the story gets futher along, his actions start to become more petty vengence (with the voices in his head getting stronger), taking pleasure in the acts of death. Weyland notices this, and is fearfull.

    He encounters the sister he thought was dead, who was sold to a wealthy lord by the crystonians. He saves her, and during this an incestous relationship grows.

    Weyland disagrees with Arens idea to do a final strike against the Crystonians, because weyland does not believe he is doing it for the right reasons, his sister sides with weyland.

    Weyland leaves, and he listens to the voice in his head, and in an act of rage, he kills his sister and lover.

    The war fails, as weyland joins the crystonians, believing a world of order is better then a world of chaos.

    He nearly kills Aren. Though aren does not die, and the voice in his head manifests. A goddess of knowledge, and gives him the power to summon an even greater army.

    He destroys the crystonians, even the woman and children, lost in rage. He pulls down the crystal, destroying all the machines which the crystal powers.
    But the crystal has the power to turn nothing into somthing, to make desires and personality manifest.

    As such he becomes nothing more then a raving daemon as a testmaent to how far he has fallen. With all his soldiers falling the same fate.

    And the empire of the beast begins.



    The idea is to explore when a knight of virtue becomes a butcher of vice. Exploring the idea of vengence.

    Any critique on this plot will be greatly appreiciated =)
     
  2. Torana
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    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

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    I can't really offer you any critique to be honest, but I can say that it sounds really good.

    I like the way you have the voice inside of his head take over his reasoning for revenge.

    I think this will make a wonderful story.

    You really can take this story a long way and I feel that it would make for a very interesting read.

    Well sorry I couldn't be of any help to you with this!

    ~Torana
     
  3. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    You’ve got some grammar studying to do... visit the SPAG section of the forum for a little help in that area.

    How does he watch his entire town get slaughtered, yet remain alive? Why does he watch that? I’m sure he’s going to suddenly gain some super courageousness, so why didn’t he doing anything then? There had better be a plausible excuse for an alien randomly popping up at this moment. Couldn’t that thing have helped him a bit earlier? Why does the guy, knowingly, want to have sexual relations with his own sister? Wait, so now he’s angry enough to kill the one person he has left in the world? The same person he had to fight to get back? What the hell kind of a waste of time was that? Weyland would obviously know of Aren’s past, so why would he side with the empire that had killed his family in such a vile manner? There doesn’t seem to be much ‘order’ in that. Again, if this damn alien-goddess-of-knowledge-plot-device-deus-ex-machina thing could summon armies, why didn’t that happen on page one? If the Crystonians had the power to make desires manifest, couldn’t they have just wished to rule the world? Why would his soldiers become demons as well?

    `adamant, the master of all logic
     
  4. Schrodinger
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    Opps sorry for the briefness of the post, this should answer all questions.

    Any other questions, feel free to ask =).

    Also crazy Ivan, that was kinda pointless critique...

    He survives because he was away from the town when the attack began, and witnessed his mothers death.

    In rage he stabs the soildier in the crown jewels with a knife, and then is stabbed, and thrown into a pile of corpses.

    They basically think he is dead, and barely survives.

    With the sexual relationship with sis thing, its based on the idea, that siblings seperated for long periods, somtimes enter sexual relationships due to bottled emmotion. It is rare, but happens.

    The voice, is there not to help him, but to make him.
    She is a catalyst, she does not help, though he may believe her. She is there to make him more twistsed, so she can control him easier. Killing the sister means less competition.

    The army does not get summoned till the end, as she wants him to lose all the people he loves apart from her first. Weyland turning against him, and being beaten by him, is kinda the last nail in the coffin.

    By this point though Aren is so in love with this "voice", that he follows her blindly, despite the relaity that she has been making his life worse.

    The idea is slightly based on the old greek tale, of a black greek war general, who is turned against his lover by his so called friend, so he can take his place.

    Weyland knows his past yes. But in a series of events that lead to arens sisters death. He has to go through a choice on what is the better of two evils. As Arens descent has gotten beyond redemption. So he decides that the best action will be to kill his friend.

    With the crystal, it kinda did make the crystonians rule most of the world, elavating there technology to new heights.
    Of course the crystal may sound like a deus ex machina, and in a way it is. Though I still have to establish some of the crystals finer points atm. With the army becoming deamons, it is using there sins, and there hate, to manifest what they really are.
     
  5. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    Crazy Ivan has no problem with you, he was just saying I did a good job.

    So... this guy gets stabbed by a knife that's been in a myriad of other people (diseases running a muck) and is capable of living long enough that a traveling circus would find him? They've mercilessly killed everyone in the town... yet they only stab some guy that just tried to neuter a soldier? If you have a pair, you know just how absurd that is. Not to mention the circus wouldn't enter that town due to the fact that EVERYONE IS DEAD and the WHOLE PLACE IS PROBABLY ON FIRE!

    Kill his sister for less competition, what? She's in his head... for a reason has yet to be discovered plausibly... so there is no real competition. Though his sister didn't like him wanting to fight, he doesn't seem to be the listening type anyway. She, the alien, is not so much a 'catalyst' as a plot device. You're introducing a foreign character into someone's head with no real reason of them being there.

    What would making him turn against his sister gain him? You're trying to insert a story that has no place being there. This guy isn't a war general, he has nothing -- literally. Or at least that's what that introduction was supposed to induce into the readers' minds. Besides, how is killing his own lover going to make an open spot if he really felt that he was just in his actions?

    He figures the death of his friend would be the less of two evils? Okay, I guess I can get past that, but why must he insist on joining some empire to do so? Slip some poison in his drink and be done with it. Otherwise, he's no better... which is the direct inverse of what I believe you're trying to accomplish.

    So why didn't the original owners become demons? And please, learn the differences between they're/their/there.
     
  6. Schrodinger
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    She does manifest, so she is not really only in his head.
    The reason he survives is by luck, and by strength of will, I dont she how this hinders the story greatly.

    The circus is not visiting that town. They passed through on roads a few miles away, the day after the attack, as it was on route to the place they needed to go.

    Aren killing his sister is one of the things which drives Weyland away. Aren sisters death serves as a catalyst for weylands betrayel, which in turn symbolises Arens lack of loved ones, making him easier to control when his voice manifests in reality. Also by this stage he is technically a war general. He has gained support from a few tribes to launch is first but unsuccesfull attack.

    Sure killing weyland with poision would be simpe enough, but by this stage in the book, he has an army which will still atttack despite aren being alive or not. So killing the whole army is a way to get rid of the problem.

    At the end of the battle Aren is basically dead. His friend gone, his sister dead. He has lost everyone. But the voice loves him, and when she manifests, he obeys.

    In a way the whole novel is geared towards the act of vengence, and how it pushes away everyone that he cares about.

    The descent of a man to a monster.

    Edit: The original owners did not become daemons, because of there state of mind, which was based in order. Building the world into one empire. Though the actions of some of the soildiers in there armies are questionable. The actions of the ones in charge, could be seemed as a nesecary evil, almost even good depending on ones view.
    Arens was purely vengence, and based in chaos, with no ot little plans for any form of goverment to replace the one destroyed (his actions would mearly set back cizzilization). Hence there transformation into daemons.

    Also sorry about my grammer, I am trying to improve upon it.
     
  7. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    It hinders the story due to it's implausibility. This guy was only stabbed while others were probably decapitated? No one else stood up to these soldiers? No one else could have survived besides him and his sister? The diseases wouldn't have killed him?

    This circus miraculously finds a guy that is miles away from where they are? So either: this half-dead guy has the strength to move himself that far, with no one seeing him; or this zombie circus just happens to have a hobby of looking through piles of bodies with binoculars?

    Okay, so say this Aren is a war general, if he believes that it is perfectly rational to kill his sister -- whom poses no threat to him -- then he must be pretty clear of what he's doing, or at least he shouldn't have some epic breakdown afterwards. Which means that he will still have his position as general.

    Wait, wait, wait... now you're telling me that even though getting rid of Aren in a much simpler way wouldn't stop his forces? Alright, but I really don't see how him joining the empire is going to make them any stronger than if he wasn't there. And if he supposed to be a major strategist, why the hell would they just let him walk away? Also, if the empire just saw a foreign soldier walking up, they'd blast him.

    Back to that damn alien goddess... that really just doesn't even make sense. What is the purpose of making some character that must make him do that? It serves no purpose for her and seems to me that she has to be there because there no other reason for the story to move forward. That is a plot coupon and a poor method.

    Plot holes...
     
  8. Schrodinger
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    It is a prequel to a story of my mates, the goddess is his charecter, and he wanted me to introduce her.

    As in his story Aren rules the world, in a pit of chaos, with her by his side.

    Hey it is his story.

    I wanted a challenge so I took this on.

    So a voice in his head, to the point of manifesting, seemed a more easier option then her randonly appearing saying.

    "Hi babe, want to rule the world with me?"

    It also served as a more interesting idea to show why he went down this path.

    Not everyone was killed, sorry I forgot to mention that. His sister was young, but usuable. Young woman and girls were taken to be sold off.

    He finds her later on as a wife to this lord she was sold to.

    He kills her mainly out of rage. Weyland starts expressing his points to Aren. She sides with Weyland, and out of rage he kills her.

    They let him join them, because he knew exactly where the army would attack and when. He gave them the information to buy there loyalty.
     
  9. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've made my points, and I believe that there are some major improbable moments. That being said, you seem to have your mind set on this particular script and you don't want to change it, so have fun with that. Though the goddess really should be introduced in another way.

    `adamant
     
  10. Crazy Ivan
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    Crazy Ivan Contributing Member

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    To add to Adamant's post, here's a rule of writing that I heard once and have always loved: If you have to defend it, it's obviously not worth keeping.
     
  11. WhispWillow
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    WhispWillow Contributing Member

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    What I will say is this:

    Begin the story and as it goes along, you yourself will see the flaws more clearly, should or when they arise.

    I reckon it's much easier to address these issues along the way, rather than tackle them before it has even started

    It sounds like good reading though

    Oh, also, your plot you have layed before us, seems pretty clear to you. In saying this, don't let it hinder you, don't forget you can always introduce new stuff along the way

    Good luck.
     
  12. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    Another one: If you know you're not going to change your damned story, don't bother asking for a critique.
     
  13. WhispWillow
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    WhispWillow Contributing Member

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    He just wanted to share his plot, that's borderline flame, be nice please.
     
  14. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    If you want to share your plot, say you're sharing your plot. I was trying to help him see some improbabilities (that was being nice), and it proved an amazing waste of time. Asking for a critique somewhat implies you're willing to look at your own work and will try to improve it.
     
  15. WhispWillow
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    WhispWillow Contributing Member

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    Perhaps.

    Anyway, May I suggest the author to perhaps begin the story and come back with any issues or problems he wants help with along the way.
     
  16. Crazy Ivan
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    Crazy Ivan Contributing Member

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    Yeah, I'd say Adamant's in the right here.
    So. Before we offer any more help, Schrodinger...do you really want help? Or are you just showing off your plot in hopes of oohs and aahs? Cuz I was guilty of that quite a lot when I first started foruming on the internet. If you're not going to accept very helpful advice here, I'd suggest just getting on your way and writing your story without further ado, so we don't have to be worried by it.

    Wait, another thought just struck me: You posted, somewhere else, a chapter from what would seemingly be the climax of the story, which tells me you've been writing out of order, or more probably, already written quite a lot (And I'm pretty sure that you've hinted at already having written this). So are you telling me you've already gone through with all these plot holes, and still refuse to go back and change them?
     
  17. Schrodinger
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    Hmmm =/ I was not really arguing mearly stating my reasons why I have choosen that plot.

    I explained my plot holes, I though that was enough.

    I am looking for criticism, but alot of what Adament said in your first replies, seemed to be edging on flaming, so of course I am going to react defensively. If I misread then I apoligise.

    As for the writting, I have wirtten the first 3 edging to 4 chapters, and the one I posted recently was a spur of the moment thing I wrote when I was suffering from insomia.

    Which I thought I could reword as a possible chapter leading to the conclusion.
     
  18. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    You don't explain plot holes. You fix them. The point of me asking all of those questions was to get you to see that the stuff you had written was improbable. When something in the story doesn't make sense, you change it.

    If I was merely trying to flame you, I'd have wasted a lot less time doing so. And you still need to work on your grammar.
     
  19. Schrodinger
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    It was when you were saying the damn alien goddess, I thought you edging on flaming, and some parts did seem rude =/

    With the goddess, she is a main part of my mates stories, and as such mine is a prequel, she needs to be introduced, as she is allready established by his story.

    As such, I need to find a way to bring her in.

    The voice in his head, I thought would be an easy progression to bring her in. So the reader is not shocked when she appears.

    So.....I am not to sure on how else to bring her in >_<...... Or a way to have her influence make him win the second attempt at a war.
     
  20. Crazy Ivan
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    Crazy Ivan Contributing Member

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    What's so bad about having someone be shocked by someone's appearance? It's called a plot twist. They are beloved by many, especially if you leave clues along the way so they can't say "WTF DEUS EX MACHINA BOO".

    Question: What, exactly, defines an alien goddess? Is it a spirit that aliens from another planet worship? Is it an alien from a species that has powers that our species would consider god-like? Is it a goddess of our species that, for some reason, comes from another planet?
     
  21. Schrodinger
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    Probably =/.....not sure really.

    Though mine is not really an alien (i said alien as she is kinda not supposed to be in his head).....though the idea of an alien deity does sound amusing.....may look at that again in the future >____>......*copyrights idea for future reference, also so crazy ivan cant sue*.

    She basically a goddess of knowledge and secrets. Who is maniplualting events for her own gain (yeah your cliche evil villaness). So I am going to try to expand her compared to the one in my mates stories.
     
  22. Crazy Ivan
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    Crazy Ivan Contributing Member

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    Ohh, got it. Sorry, I guess adamant used the term first, and then I thought you did...my fault.

    Also: I have an idea. You say "A goddess" like there's more than one deity in this religious system. If that's so, than maybe you could introduce her by having her do that old-fashioned, tested and true, religious pasttime with the other gods and goddesses of her religion: Entertaining themselves by screwing over humans? The whole story could be written with the gods and goddesses playing an elaborate game with the human. But the goddess wants desperately to win, so she "cheats"- influences her pawn directly to win.
     
  23. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    I meant alien as in foreign due to the fact that this thing just came from nowhere basically. No sure if he used it first, but that's what it became after I called it an 'alien-goddess-of-knowledge-plot-device-deus-ex-machina'.

    Look over what I've already written and come up with a logical way to present the story. It's going to be a challenge, but that's what you said you wanted. Isn't it?
     
  24. ap Oweyn
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    ap Oweyn Member

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    I think it's a good start. It's not perfect. But it's not supposed to be perfect. It's supposed to be a starting point.

    I gather that posters here are big on sayings. A writer friend of mine told me once (and I expect he got this from someone else): "A first draft is little more than a commitment to write the story." So if this is your first draft, don't worry. Just write. There will be plenty of time for refining it and fixing plot holes later. Just commit to writing it.

    Why does there need to be a big rationale up front about the voice? Personally, I'd rather that rationale came out gradually. And the nuances of it, I expect, won't become really clear to the author until he's done a complete first draft. Maybe not even then. There's time to go back and resolve those things.

    I'm surprised at the lack of support in this thread. Sure, it's not perfect. But good grief. This reception seemed specifically designed to be discouraging and condescending. Everyone starts somewhere. And it seems a shame that the more experienced people feel the need to come off that way.

    You can't get defensive about someone refusing to accept your critique when the tone of your critique is so clearly belittling. Who would want to listen to that? I wouldn't blame anyone for reacting defensively to what I've read here. That's a real shame, because you make some solid points.

    For whatever it's worth, I say the OP is doing fine. Things will become clearer as you work through it a second time. Just tackle it in stages if that's what makes most sense to you.

    Good luck.


    Stuart
     
  25. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    Boo-hoo.

    I was finding plot holes and imperfections in logic. Just because I asked questions about the plot and used the words 'damn' and 'hell' you believe I'm attacking him? While I wasn't supporting him, I wasn't tearing him down either. Honestly, if I wanted to flame him, why would I waste so much time going through the story?

    I wanted some reasoning behind the voice-from-nowhere because if not even he understands it, how is someone outside of his head going to? What was written didn't make sense when it just went from a voice to some physical manifestation.

    If you don't want to listen to it: fine. I won't waste my time on you.

    Good day.
     

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