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  • E Awaken, Scootaloo

    When Scootaloo loses hope, Princess Luna is there to help her learn to dream again.
    6,531 words · 4,690 views  ·  601  ·  5
  • E Diary of a Silent Tyrant

    Encased in stone, Discord observes the events around him and reflects on his life
    3,162 words · 6,659 views  ·  662  ·  7
  • E Apple Ninjas and Other Vital Concerns

    Big Mac shows Apple Bloom that the farm can be a blast, even when her friends are all busy for the day.
    3,725 words · 1,324 views  ·  170  ·  0
  • E Checkmates

    After finding a chess set in the library's storage closet, Twilight is eager to play a few games and turns to Applejack and Rainbow Dash. Teaching the two most competitive ponies in Ponyville a new game should be a snap, right? RIGHT?!
    3,673 words · 6,246 views  ·  461  ·  5
  • E Cheerilee's Thousand

    Cheerilee goes on one thousand terrible dates.
    70,161 words · 5,031 views  ·  628  ·  9
  • E Diary of a Pliant Tyrant

    When Fluttershy finds out that Discord used to keep a mental diary while imprisoned in stone, she begs him to continue it. Grudgingly, he promises to document his thoughts about his new life among old enemies
    16,437 words · 8,062 views  ·  823  ·  14
  • E A Door Jam

    Twilight, Applejack and Fluttershy end up on an adventure when Pinkie develops a strange obsession with Sugarcube Corner's back door.
    10,904 words · 4,143 views  ·  272  ·  6
  • E Easy As Pie

    In which Pinkie Pie battles a rogue kitchen.
    7,385 words · 4,512 views  ·  236  ·  5

Blog Posts440

  • 1w, 1d
    Avengers 2

    Massive excitement: that's what I'm feeling. they are planning for some all out craziness, if this trailer is to be believed. Ultron is no joke when it comes to villains, and they've made him a menacing as he ought to be, at least in this short clip. They managed to turn Ronin into a clown for a half a movie, so it's not like the deal is sealed. Still, I trust Joss Whedon to make good choices.

    I both love and hate trailers like this. You can definitely get a sense that big things are happening, but not enough to really know what they are. Or course, it revolves around Ultron, and anyone who knows the character can see where that arc logically leads to, but how exactly that is happening is unclear. We just get a sense that there is conflict. Lots of conflict. Conflict upon conflict. That's cool and all, but it doesn't really give me an idea of whether I'm going to dig the thrust of the film like the trailer for Captain America 2 did. That trailer let me know that it was going to be Cap questioning the current system while also fighting to protect it. That was interesting to me. This has... um... Well, it's got a lot of destruction and some ballerinas. And Cap gets his shield broken, which would be bigger deal if adamantium was a thing in these arm of the MCU.

    But we do get a nice look at the Hulkbuster armor, even though Tony Stark has no chance against the Hulk. Well, comic book Hulk. He's always kind of underpowered in movies and TV, and necessarily so. Keep in mind that comic book Hulk is invited to cosmic level meetings between concept beings like Eternity and Death because he is the living embodiment of rage. Unless they've made changes to the character that I'm unaware of, the Hulk literally has no upper level of strength. As long as he's getting mad, he's getting stronger. Tony Stark's armor has no chance against someone who is a threat to Death. At least, not in the comics.

    Unfortunately, we also get a few shots of Black Widow and Hawkeye not doing very much. That's really a big concern for me. They've actually impressed me with both characters so far, but I'm still worried that they'll just be relegated background status before too long. It's what I think of as the Justice League effect. What do you need Green Arrow for when you have a team that includes The Flash and Superman. I mean, what possible situation could arise that one of the two of them couldn't solve more efficiently? However, I was a fan of Barry Allen Flash, so it might be that he's less powerful than before, but there was literally nothing he couldn't do back in the day. Anyway, I just hope they continue to make those characters useful.

    The odd thing here is that it diverges from the main stories that we have been following, so I'm curious to see how it will all come together. We have the loose thread of Loki in Asgard. Thanos is out there. Hydra is has a strong grip on the world. Yet none of this is evident at all in the trailer. We do get to see Captain America in an old castle at one point, which could point to Baron von Strucker (Seen at the end of Captain America 2), or maybe investigating some of the Red Skull's old artifacts. Or maybe even Baron Zemo, if we are lucky. If so, Joss, please don't have that weird, pink ski mask thing on him. Some things just don't translate well. A pink and yellow bodysuit with eremite trim, capped with a baggy pink facemask is one of those things.

    All in all, I'm excited to see what they are doing with Ultron. Joss Whedon says that are going against the trope of the Coldly Logical Robot Destroys The World thing. He's saying that Ultron is a flawed, illogical mess, basically. I think that's either going to be totally fascinating, or a complete disaster. Joss has a history of great characters, though, so I'm eager to see what he's done with that kind of a concept. It would be nice to move away from that Skynet kind of thinking into something new.

    10 comments · 67 views
  • 2w, 10h
    Update and Errata

    So the new story is coming right along.  It's about a third of the way through an editing pass, and so far only one or two major things have come up.  I have gotten from just about everyone that it's pretty dark, though, and that's disheartening.  The Dark tag is the kiss of death, in my opinion, but I don't want to lie to readers.  If it's dark, then it is.  I'll just have to live with that lower view rate.

    This is the hardest time for me as an author.  I love writing.  I love publishing.  I really, really hate editing.  You take this thing that you think is really great and give it to other people, who then tell you why it's not so great.  I find it to be demoralizing.  And then I get angry at myself for being childish, but it's a process.  I get feedback, then I enter into a small depression for a couple of days.  After that, I'll use the feedback to hopefully make the story better.  It's always helped in the past.  My stories have always come out better and stronger, yet I sit here and feel down about the whole thing for a few days.  That drives me up the wall.  I hope to one day be past that.

    I got the art back for the story, and I'm fairly pleased with it.  The artist screwed a few minor details up, but it's still pretty nice.

    Also, I'm not sure why I'm a sucker for stories with ridiculous sounding premises, but I am in the worst sense of that word.  I always look at these stories and think, "Wow, that sounds shallow/unworkable/like a terrible idea. There's no way an author would do that unless he or she had some way to really make that work in a way that's fresh and original."  It never is.

    Not true!  Skywriter's Shipping Sickness is a great example of a stupid premise that was awesomely done, but it's the rare exception, it seems.  This is probably news to no one but me.

    4 comments · 67 views
  • 2w, 6d
    Cute

    3 comments · 101 views
  • 3w, 16h
    The Tsunami

    Gah! So much to do! I have too many stories to write!

    I've just finished one, and I'm staring down the barrel of at least ten more. I don't know where they all came from. Luckily, I'm feeling pretty energized. I really like how my new story came out, and that will probably evaporate once my editor gets back to me with a thousand items, but for now, I'm feelin' fine. I'm already thinking about a sequel to that story, but we'll see how it's received first. I love it, so it'll probably fall flat on its face.

    I'm still struggling to find art, but I sent out some new requests that I've got high hopes for. The story won't be ready for public consumption for probably another month or so anyway, so I've got some time.

    But the next order of business is definitely going to be updating Cheerilee's Thousand and Taking a Job for Granite. I've sat on that stuff for too long while I worked on this new Big Mac story and First Steps. Then we will see about some collabs people have been asking for.

    And speaking of collabs, The Album 2 is seriously lagging. My Pinkie Pie chapter will never be seen! This is where I'd put the bawling Rarity emoticon, but we don't have it in the blogs, I guess.

    And how about this snazzy update? I'm liking it overall, though I'm still struggling to understand some of the choices. I can't see the lifetime performance of my story anymore? Just a monthly breakdown?  Uh, okay...

    15 comments · 92 views
  • 3w, 3d
    New Story Rough Is Done

    Ah, that 'Just finished a story' afterglow.  There's nothing quite like it.

    So I've finished my story about Big Mac being a boxer, and boy did it go off in a direction I didn't anticipate at the beginning.  I'm pretty pleased with it, though.  I had a good time writing it.  For the next few days, I'll probably be doing some editing, but does anyone want to pre-read it?  I'm always interested in hearing opinions on how a story is coming together.

    Now if I could just get the art settled.  WHY IS IT SO DAMN HARD TO GET ARTISTS TO RESPOND?!  I've never understood this about artists.  I tried for several years to get comic books together, and I'd meet with these artist who were totally on board.  Then they'd suddenly disappear. Six months later I get an email apologizing and telling me that they'd still like to work on the thing if it's still available.  Then they disappear again.  It's so frustrating. I'm trying to give them money to do the thing they like to do! Why is this such a complicated arrangement?

    Sigh.  Well, I'm going to contact another artist tomorrow, probably.

    0 comments · 45 views
  • ...
 51
 1,063

Lunchnapping!  That's what it was.  A brazen crime in broad daylight. The delicious carrot dog was in Spike's claw one moment and airborne the next, spirited away by a flying thief.

Now, Spike's on a mission to get back what's his.  Unfortunately for him, city birds are a lot tougher than they look.

Special thanks to InquisitorM for editing the hell out of this story.

Additional editing help from Dragonas77 and Statoose - I couldn't do it without you guys.

First Published
16th Jan 2014
Last Modified
16th Jan 2014
#1 · 41w, 2d ago · 5 · ·

I was smiling the whole way through.

Loved every minute of it.

~Skeeter The Lurker

#2 · 41w, 2d ago · · ·

Thanks!  I'm pretty happy with how this turned out.  :eeyup:

#3 · 41w, 2d ago · 5 · ·

Beautiful.  A very Goodfeathers feel to this.  Two wings up.  :moustache:

#4 · 41w, 2d ago · 3 · ·

>>3794753 Thanks!  You know, I should have thought about The Goodfeathers when I was writing this.  I'd totally forgotten about them!  Animaniacs used to be so damn funny!

#5 · 41w, 2d ago · 1 · ·

I love this. I love this so much.

I'm with Skeeter on this one, I could NOT stop grinning the entire time I was reading this. :pinkiehappy:

Bravo, good sir. Brav-friggin'-o

#6 · 41w, 2d ago · 1 · ·

>>3794974  Thanks so much!  I really enjoyed writing this one.  Those birds were awesome to characterize.

#7 · 41w, 2d ago · · ·

Fun story. Thanks

#8 · 41w, 2d ago · · ·

>>3795037  You bet!  I love to entertain you guys!  :pinkiehappy:

#9 · 41w, 2d ago · 1 · ·

If only the birds in the real NYC were as courteous as Maury and Carl. I've been given me the poop treatment one time too many in my short life, even when I'm as nice as can be to them! Obviously, I agree with every danged person on this comment section. A++ all the way dude.

#10 · 41w, 2d ago · · ·

Ah, now this was both hilarious and heartwarming.

#11 · 41w, 2d ago · · ·

You sir are a genius for writing this!:rainbowlaugh:

#12 · 41w, 2d ago · · ·

Before reading: This aughta be good.

After reading: I was right. :rainbowlaugh:

“So here. I’m just going to give this to you. I… you guys don’t know Rarity, but I don’t think I could look her in the eye if I didn’t.”

He couldn't look in the eye if he didn't know her? Might wanna rearrange that there dialogue.

#13 · 41w, 2d ago · · ·

>>3796192 No, he couldn't look her in the eye is he didn't perform his act of generosity.

#14 · 41w, 2d ago · · ·

This is so awesome:moustache:

#15 · 41w, 1d ago · 2 · ·

Is it wrong to say that I pictured the birds in this story with the voices of the Goodfeathers?  Because I don't think it is. :ajsmug:

You have successfully taken a scene where Spike is given the Dangerfield treatment (no respect), and made it a study of how much his character has grown over the past few seasons.  Take note, DHX.  Spike can be a lot more than a simple butt monkey.  Hats off. :moustache:

#16 · 41w, 1d ago · · ·

>>3795584  I'm happy you liked this, and I'm glad that, as a New Yorker, you didn't throw a brick at me for my portrayal of what I imagine a bird from Manehattan would sound like.  I gave it my best guess.

#17 · 41w, 1d ago · · ·

>>3795688 Well, thank you!  I worked really hard to try and make it entertaining.

#18 · 41w, 1d ago · · ·

>>3796346 Thanks so much!

#19 · 41w, 1d ago · 2 · ·

>>3796475  You know, I watched so much Animaniacs that I think the Goodfeathers must have influenced this, but I'd actually totally forgotten about them until Georg mentioned them in the comment above.  

It does not displease me in the least to be compared with those birds.  They were friggin' hilarious!

#20 · 41w, 1d ago · · ·

>>3796192   I'm happy that it met your expectations.

I can see where that bit of dialogue is weird.  I'll adjust it.

#21 · 41w, 1d ago · · ·

>>3796688 It's a bunch of stereotypes left over from older times, but I always preferred that version anyways :rainbowlaugh:

#22 · 41w, 1d ago · · ·

>>3796066  I'm thrilled you enjoyed it so much!

#23 · 41w, 1d ago · · ·

I wasn't kidding when I said the banter in this was fun to read. Seriously, I had a hard time not speaking all of Maury and Carl's lines out to myself as I read.

The changes in this draft definitely work; Cecil was still threatening, but it didn't feel as dark; And you handled the perspective switches nicely. I didn't think they were a big deal in the first draft, but this flows seamlessly.

Three small errors I spotted:

And a bit further along the sidewalk, he noticed dash of relish, followed by a little speck of ketchup.

Need an 'a' here.

Flapping desperately, the pigeon tried to find some way around, but Cecil titanic wings seemed to be everywhere at once.

Need possessive.

The momentary distraction has provided the gull with the perfect opportunity.

*Had.

#24 · 41w, 1d ago · 1 · ·

>>3798060  Thanks for this.  I swear, one day I'll find the secret to weeding all of these out.

I don't know what it is about tough city birds.  Their dialogue practically writes itself!  It's super fun to do!  :pinkiehappy:

#25 · 40w, 1d ago · · ·

*Grins an applauds* Bravo! I loved the bird's characterization and it's always nice to see Spike getting some love (Of the non sticky kind:raritywink:)

Very solidly done. I love the ending line.:rainbowlaugh:

#26 · 40w, 1d ago · · ·

>>3833343  Thanks, man!  I'm happy to hear that you liked it.  This one hasn't been a big hit with readers, but it was among the most fun stories for me to actually write.  I really liked writing the dialogue for those birds!

#27 · 38w, 5d ago · · ·

This was... surprisingly good! Truly, good on you!

I really liked how you used "angle of attack" in a way that would explain it to someone not in the know, and also, points for using seagulls' techniques for killing clams to great effect.

You get a surprised upvote and favourite!

#28 · 38w, 5d ago · · ·

>>3886585  Thanks!  I looked up seagulls before I wrote this and tried to work in some actually mannerisms for the battle.  I probably made Cecil too agile, but he needed to be a believable monster for it to work.

Glad you enjoyed this!  :pinkiehappy:

#29 · 37w, 3d ago · · ·

A tiny typo. "Bothof" should be two words.

"...He saves bothof us!" Maury dropped his gaze, wiping his eye with a wing.

You really get a feel for the birds' personalities in a short time. A fun story with a sweet ending, but, hehe, that ending sentence just makes it all even better. :yay:

#30 · 37w, 2d ago · · ·

>>3934027 Thanks for pointing out that typo.  I swear that I've read this story dozens of times, and still... typos.  :ajsleepy:

I'm glad the birds worked for you.  I was a little afraid people would be put off because their weren't enough ponies in these, but it seems like people like the birds.  I'm pleased with that.

We'll see what EQD thinks whenever they finally get around to this story...

And I couldn't completely take the edge away from those birds!  In the end, Spike still gets the business.

#31 · 35w, 2d ago · · ·

Up on EqD. Hurrah! About time, too.

#32 · 35w, 2d ago · · ·

>>4006242 Oh, wow!  They didn't waste any time!  I just got the email about fifteen minutes ago.

Thanks!  I was just about to send you a PM on it.

#33 · 35w, 2d ago · · ·

I am so glad I took the chance on this one! The birds were just a bit extensive, but it worked well, and I was really enjoying the fact of their accents. Spike seemed to be in-character, and the secne where he decided to hand over the carrot dog was very well done. Anyone who's seen the show should be able to picture that perfectly; I could see the expressions on his face and hear the emotion in his voice so well... You've done a wonderful job on this; thank you for sharing it with us!

#34 · 35w, 2d ago · · ·

It's so great to finally see this up on EQD. They really put you through hell just sitting around waiting for so long.

Anyway, as you already know, great job!

#35 · 35w, 2d ago · · ·

>>4006314 Thank you very much for reading this.  I spent a lot of time on this story, and it's nice to see people enjoying it after that!  :pinkiehappy:

#36 · 35w, 2d ago · · ·

>>4006357 It was really the series of back and forth editing between EQD and The Royal Guard.  For a story with 3,500 words, you would not believe how much editing I did.  I guarantee Diary of a Pliant Tyrant, Taking a Job for Granite, and Checkmates combined didn't have the level of editing this story did.  It seemed like it would never end.

However, I was kind of being a baby about it.  While I did think they were super-nitpicky, it was helping to make a better overall product.

#37 · 35w, 1d ago · · ·

I've been waiting for this one. :yay:

#38 · 34w, 6d ago · 1 · ·

P̩̀i̪̠̣̯͚g̟̣̱͙̳̤͍͝ḛ̠̹͙o҉̠̻n͚̣̤͔̼s̰̳͉̘͡... I hate pigeons! :twilightangry2:

Just wait until Carl soils Rarity's coiffure.

I see a new musical number in the very near future. :trixieshiftright:

#39 · 34w, 2d ago · · ·

>>4022062 One drop goes in Rarity's hair and it's all over for that bird.  Not even Fluttershy could save him.

#40 · 34w, 2d ago · · ·

>>4010500 Well, I'm happy to provide!  :pinkiehappy:

#41 · 32w, 21h ago · · ·

I'm reminded of Goodfeathers, and that's a very good thing. Magnificent work. Thank you for it.

#42 · 32w, 20h ago · · ·

>>4113548 No, thank you for reading it!  I'm very appreciative that you took the time to read it and tell me that you enjoyed it.  That means a lot to me.  :twilightsmile:

#43 · 32w, 16h ago · · ·

This was quite awesome.  I could just imagine Fluttershy trying to talk to these birds and end up buying the Brooklyn Bridge.

#44 · 32w, 16h ago · 1 · ·

>>4114380 Ha!  That's great!  I could totally see that happening.

#45 · 32w, 5h ago · · ·

I was not expecting to enjoy a Spike story so much as I did with this one. Only thing I wonder is how did Spike not notice the bleeding on the bird? That sounded more severe than the rest of the story made it out to be. Yeesh.

But got to say this was wonderful little "Where was Spike?" side episode to Rarity taking Manehattan while Spike spent the majority of his time hunting for a carrot dog. xD

You really made him feel like Show Spike. I wish he could get episodes like this in canon. I doubt they'd make it look so violent though but still, it'd make a great episode nonetheless.

#46 · 31w, 6d ago · 1 · ·

>>4116990  When it came to the injuries of the birds, I wanted to keep Spike's reactions to a minimum.  That lets the reader know that the injuries aren't really that serious.  If Spike had pointed them out, then it's an indication that he'd need to do something about it, and I didn't want to get caught up in that.  He's noting that they are in a sorry state, and I felt that was probably enough.

And if this was an episode, you could get away with a lot less violence.  Here, I had to make Cecil a threat with actions, and those actions care weight.  However, in a cartoon, you can get away with softening the violence with silly faces with stars swirling around the head and such.  Things like Rainbow slamming into windows at full speed and sliding off of them.  It sounds a lot worse to write it than to see it in cartoon form.  However, I did purposefully make this a little grittier than the typical level of violence because I wanted the story to be somewhat serious.  Not totally, but I wanted it to have an edge to it.

I'm very pleased you liked the story overall, though!  :pinkiehappy:

#47 · 31w, 6d ago · 1 · ·

>>4118398 Oh, everything was fine. I was just pointing out that high speed slam into a ROCK the pidgeon got bashed into causing it to bleed, and the grinding hollow wing bones in a gull's beak, I meant that it just distracted and made Spike's reactions feel less impactful overall until a certain line was said(more on that later). I mean, did he really think a carrot would heal a couple bloodied up and limping pigeons?

I'm not saying they were limping, but it read like the previous descriptions of extra bits like blood feel unnecessary, that Gull was a serious threat from start to finish. Made me wanna quote a few of those moments and post a "Ain't Nature Beautiful?" Fluttershy reaction from the comics. xD

It's a fine story. Just, as a reader, it just served to distract from the scene later with Spike. It's like me walking up to you with blood rushing down the sides face from a gash on my head and choosing to take your offer of a hot dog over getting medical attention.

Cecil was awesome. I liked how brutal he was. He made a great antagonist. That whole mafia thug life thing was nice. I just personally couldn't connect with the ending with how stuff prior to an otherwise amazing ending.

I know you had Spike acknowledge they were a sorry mess and all that, basically. It's just, I don't see him ignoring "bloodied" up pigeons given how much he was willing to do just to protect an egg. Imagine his reaction to seeing bloodied up animals? He'd at least bandage them up at the least.

In short, when I read "bloodied" in the context of being slammed from on high at extreme velocity from such heights, well, following how the story has gone to be so raw with realism, and that constant sense of lives at genuine risk, it felt like it just ignored what it tried to be.

But! It did help show at least just how badly Spike cared for the gift. Not even a bunch of beaten bloodied pigeons can easily persuade Spike from giving up his lunch. Only, his love and respect for the pony who gave it to him really shone in that scene. Showing him once again defeat the greed, though more justified greed, beaten out by how much influence Rarity's generosity has on Spike. I wouldn't be able to show my face to her either if I had munched that carrot dog after seeing the state of those pigeons.

And that's why I basically told myself to ignore the flaws as they had a way of working themselves out at the end.

I'm not sure why I did spoilers on that. Maybe I should have thrown more in? Apologies to anyone who feels I somehow spoiled anything not marked spoiler.

Also, how did this get away with an Everyone tag? Teen is the only rating that allows blood and this level of violence. Pre-reader be slacking yo!

#48 · 31w, 6d ago · · ·

>>4119044  Well, when it comes to them being bloodied, there is "seriously injured" and there is "banged up but okay."  This was the latter.  I've been in plenty of situations where I, say, ran my head into something and cut it.  I'm bleeding, and it hurts, but no one ran over to care for me.  Everyone can see that it's not that big of a deal.  It's the same for the birds.  They aren't laying there wounded and suffering.  They are actively pining over that dog.  Their wounds aren't really on their minds.

But it's going to read differently to each reader.  I've been in a lot of fights, so this stuff doesn't seem like that big of a deal to me.  Maybe it does to other readers.  It's something for me to think about in the future.

And as for the Teen rating, I dunno.  I've never really looked at what defines the categories, since I think of myself as an Everyone writer.  Though I've certainly pushed the boundaries in Cheerilee's Thousand a few times...

#49 · 19w, 6d ago · · ·

I really enjoyed reading this! You based a whole side-story and friendship lesson off of a minor detail (Spike losing the carrot dog), which is impressive.

The fight was exciting and the banter was fun to read. It had a good ending too. Though if I was Spike, I don't think I would have eaten that carrot dog after all it went through. :derpytongue2:

#50 · 19w, 6d ago · 1 · ·

>>4546411 Thanks!  It's nice to know you enjoyed it.  :pinkiehappy:

I did think about Spike not eating the carrot dog, but he seems like a dragon that isn't too fussy about things like that.  I mean, he fell asleep in a punch bowl, ate worm muffins, and licked himself clean when he was covered in icing.  I figure he'd eat a beaten up carrot dog as long as it didn't cross the line into filthy.

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