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  • 32w, 3d

    Chapter nine of The Book of Water: The Heart of Winter has been released. Apparently several readers brought it to my attention that they hadn't received notifications. So just letting everyone know the latest chapter has been released, and is available for reading.

    1 comments · 172 views
  • 42w, 1d
    I Was Asked A Question...

    I had gentlereader DraconeKing ask me the following question in the comments of The Great Slave King: Any advice for writing fanfiction? I always stop at the first paragraph and give up.

    After a bit of thought, I wrote a response to them. Since I spent some time writing it I thought why not post it as a blog post so it doesn't accidentally get erased.

    Thank you for your comments gentlereader, the first thing I'd suggest is deciding what kind of story you wish to tell. An adventure tale, extolling the exploits of an unlikely hero and his compatriots against some great evil and impossible odds. A romance, where two strangers become unlikely friends then lovers, after they realize they have more in common then they ever though possible. Or maybe even a tragedy, where the protagonist loses something dear and precious to him, and struggles to cope with their loss and grief, until they finally come to terms with themselves and finally find peace.

    Once you have an idea of where you would like to begin, I'd suggest deciding on an overriding theme for your story. Perhaps you want to write about friendship, and how the hardships the protagonist face become easier to overcome because of the bonds and friendships they formed with the other characters in the story. Maybe it might be about the power of love to change even the most embittered soul, and how the protagonist learned to trust again after finding solace with the one who refused to stop loving them, even if they didn't deserve it. Or you could even possibly write about how none are beyond forgiveness and redemption, once the antagonist has been laid low and defeated after a hard struggle, and instead of the protagonists vanquishing their foe, offer him the chance for penance.

    Once a theme has been decided, determine who your main protagonist is. Will they be a wide eyed innocent soul, who's destined for far greater things then the humble village of his humble beginnings. A wronged soul, who seeks vengeance against those who stole that which was the most precious to them. Or even a bitter and jaded warrior seeking tranquility, whose grown weary of their journey along the stony path of conflict which life has offered them.

    Now that you have discovered the protagonist, determine their motivations. What events have shaped and molded them into who they are today. Perhaps it some unspeakable tragedy which has greatly wounded their heart. Finally finding someone to love, and hoping to win the heart of the one who has already won theirs. Or even someone content to live within mediocrity, because they simply gave up.

    Once you know who the protagonist is, you need to discover the world they live in. What sort of land do they call home? What are the people like, their culture, their religion? What about the countries beyond their land's borders. How do they differ from the main settings?

    Now that you know the protagonist, their past, and where they live. You need to discover the event that changed everything. Perhaps a raid against their village from a much larger army, started them on their journey. They could have been content, living their life when they show up. The person that somehow managed to get beneath their skin and worm their way inside their heart, prompting them to change for the better. Or maybe they committed a great evil, and in their shame they ever wander, desperate to escape themselves.

    Now that we have some momentum, you need to determine the challenges the protagonist will face. Essentially, what happens between point A, and point B. Maybe they came to a new town for a job, discovered that one of their coworkers is actively sabotaging their efforts, gets blamed for a massive cock up, discovers the truth and reveals it their boss, ensuring their coworker gets their comeuppance. Or maybe a lonely king is under threat from a law requiring him to find a queen or abdicate the throne by a certain date, however for personal reasons objects to marriage and tries his best to elude the law's requirements with help from royalty from a neighboring kingdom whose citizens are pushing they get married as well, in the end they discover friendship and love, and learn that maybe being married isn't so bad, especially if it's to each other.

    Finally a good story is a lot like dancing. There's a rhythm, cadence, and a beat every story wants to follow. The easiest stories to write have three movements, the beginning, where everything is explained and the protagonist faces great peril that has been spoken throughout the story, the evil twin steals their favorite toy, the romantic rival sweeps their interest off their feet, their company is being threatened by a hostile takeover by corporate raiders. The middle where the protagonist is brought low by their challenges and peril, and they are unsure if they will actually make it, the castle is under siege and supplies are running low, the young student lost their master and must now rely on themselves for answers, their best friend was murdered before their eyes and the killer managed to get away. The end where the protagonist and story meet their resolution and climatic end, the grand wedding where they exchange their vows of everlasting love for each other, the retirement to a small peaceful village where they are free to pursue their true passion, painting scenic watercolors, winning the final round of the tournament to accolades and great honors.

    Remembering these simple rules will help you write whatever story you want. I suggest starting out with a simple outline, Determine the type of story, then its theme, decide upon the cast and live in their world for a day. Decide on the challenges they might face, and a simple outline of how you want to arrange the acts. Once you have this simple framework, the rest is easy. Write what comes naturally to you, and above all else have fun. Remember as long as you're happy with the story, no one elses opinion matters. Well unless you write for money, then pander to your audience. Hopefully you found my thoughts enlightening.

    P.S. Look out for the next chapter of The Book of Water: The Heart of Winter shortly.

    3 comments · 152 views
  • 48w, 3d
    Regarding the Latest Chapter of The Heart of Winter...

    The next chapter release will occur on Christmas.

    0 comments · 117 views
  • 51w, 4d
    Would You Kindly...

    Hi, gentlereader, I'm going to start working shortly. So I might miss discovering my story getting featured. If it does, could you please send me a message so I can post the next chapters like I promised? Thank you for your kind consideration.

    Until next time, gentlereader!

    2 comments · 115 views
  • 51w, 4d
    The King Has Returned, (once more that is)!

    The next story in the Great Slave King saga has been submitted for your reading pleasure, and is just waiting for mod approval.

    If you don't want to wait, here's the link: The Book of Water: The Heart of Winter

    Until next time, gentlereader!

    0 comments · 90 views
  • ...

With her reputation in tatters after the Ponyville incident, the Great and Powerful Trixie has been reduced to nothing more than a wandering vagabond. Broke and homeless, all she can do now is wander from one back water tavern to another telling the old stories and legends she's learned during her travels. So weary traveler, fill up your mug, pull up a chair, and stay a while and listen, as the Great and Powerful Trixie shares a story or two.

Side story to The Great Slave King Saga

Book One The Great Slave King

Book Two  The Book of Water: The Marriage of the Slave King

Cover Art Misty Peak Tavern by Stoyan Stoyanov

First Published
15th Jan 2013
Last Modified
3rd Feb 2013

>>1961394 Thanks for your comments gentlereader, anything in particular you like about the story? I was originally going to do this after The Book of Water completed, but the contest prompted me to try my hand at it. Hopefully it's well received.


I guess I like how it's told. It's half story and half short story.

That and world building. I freaking love world building.

>>1961419 Yes, I'm fond of telling narratives within a narrative. I plan on showing Trixie's life as she goes from tavern to tavern trying to make a living. While expanding the Slave King Saga universe with little tales, for example I have the true story of how Zap apples and by extension came to be. Another Story might expand upon characters like Sir Stouthorn from the Great Slave King and how he first became a knight, etc. I hope this series gains enough traction, and the readers make requests for things they might like to see in future chapters.

yes :pinkiehappy:

another story when r u going to come out with the next chapter:rainbowhuh:

>>1962095 Thank you for your comments gentlereader, I'm about half done with it. The latest chapter is taking its time. Sometimes I can bash out 10k words without hardly any effort, other times It's a struggle to just write 500. The funny thing is I know exactly how I want chapter 8 to go but 7 is being a pain in my backside due to it being a segue way chapter. Sorry about the wait I hope to have it completed by this weekend.

Great chapter hoss. This I could see getting into, but not taking the place of the Great Slave King. I agree with ISKV, world building is somethiing I enjoy. Something I would like to see is how the lesser domains came to be, I.E. deer, minotaur, goats, whatever man. Good chapter and good job bud :eeyup:

>>1962695 Thank you for your comments gentlereader. Yes this series is designed as supplemental material for the Great Slave King Saga universe. Basically a way for me to tell one shots, but will have an over arching story to tell regarding Trixie and the towns and pubs she visits. If you want to lean more just put it in the comments like you did and I'll see about writing it up. Funny you should mention the minotaurs goats etc. They are all part of the Domain of Spring and Lady Minoa will be featured in the next chapter.

This deserves to win. Simple, yet wonderfully told. Kinda reminds me of Just So Stories, or maybe Tales Of The Early World. Well done sir.

>>1963307 Thanks for your comments gentlereader, was there anything about the story you found wanting?

>>1964655 Hmmm. Hard to say, considering I don't have much experience as a writer. You handled all the elements of the story well, kept me guessing right up until Luna showed up. Not really, no criticisms.

Of course, my opinion may be coloured; I grew up with the book Tales Of The Early World, by Ted Hughes. This story is evocative of his style, as I think I mentioned in my first comment. So it might just be the rose-tinted glasses of childhood marring my vision, but I found it to be fantastic: Not too short, not too long. It hit just the right 'Goldilocks zone', for me anyway. Racking my brains to think of something helpful to say, but honestly I think your skill is beyond mine to criticize. I'd advise waiting for someone like Wanderer D or Csquared or Plum to help, as they are far better equipped than I to help you out here.

In any case, kudos, and good luck with the contest!

Felt alot like the beginning chapters of the Silmarillion.

Very good :D

A nice little story, I dare say! I did find a fair amount of errors, though...

“Master, you’re a fool for wasting our time with these peasants!” she shouted at him, slamming their caravan’s door behind her.

Since this exchange is occurring in the past, the actions should be "she had said" and "he had said and "she had looked", to help denote them as memories, and differentiate them from the current action.

“For the Lawgiver,” he cried out, determined to take as many of these things to the Pit with him.

..."as possible"?

Lots of little things like that - a few missing commas, here and there. I also would have preferred slightly more description of the living dead when we first see them chasing the mayor out of the mine.

Something that I've found helps tremendously for editing is to read the story out loud to yourself, once or twice. Sometimes, when reading silently, your brain can glaze over certain things, but reading out loud forces it to pay more attention. If something sounds weird to you, it'll probably look weird to your readers - likewise, if you find yourself pausing naturally in your speech, and there's no comma or hyphen there to denote it, add one.

A bit of spit-polish, and I think this could definitely place in the contest. (Although, to be fair, you don't have any competition as of yet.:derpytongue2:)

>>2068194 Thank you for your comments gentlereader, I suppose the errors is my fault for posting so early. Thank you for your critique, I'll make a few more passes for errors later.

I found myself enjoying Trixie's bits a tad more than the story she told. Still, a solid tale overall. Well done.

>>2073930 Thank you gentlereader for your comments, what did you find more compelling about Trixie's storyline versus the story she told?

This review is brought to you on behalf of the group Authors Helping Authors.

Name of story: Equestrian Tales Told by Tavernlight.

Grammar score out of 10 (1 is grammar that needs to be worked upon as basic principles such as capitalization and spelling is an issue, and 10 is impeccable): Grammar receives an 8 due to some punctuation errors. Mostly, the errors were things such as a missing comma or slightly misspelled word. Other than that the grammar was impeccable.

Pros: The characterization in these stories was spot-on and fantastic. The first story reminded me of a fable of sorts a la Lord of the Rings, while the second had me laughing hard at the sheer ridiculousness of Sir Stouthorn and his quirkiness. Trixie and her sections were small yet well-written, and made me respect her and even feel a little bad for how she was treated in Ponyville. The language used in both stories was rich and varied, so much so that I had to, on a couple of occasions, check a dictionary for the meaning of a few words. This had me eager to 'learn' new words from your stories, words that I may eventually use to enrich my own writing. Other pros are how, even though I've never read The Great Slave King series, these stories have piqued my interest as to what those tales hold. For someone who has never read your epic of a story, these tales  were easy to get into, and never was I bored or confused.

Cons: Mostly the grammatical errors are the only truly noticeable cons. Try reading the stories out loud, or if you don't have a proofreader, it will benefit any and every author to get someone to read and check your story. This only other con is more of a nitpick, but it bothered me nonetheless. In the Diamond Dogs story, why is Luna the only one to talk with words such as "thou" and "thy"? It was a little jarring after witnessing conversation that never had these words in them to suddenly include them.

Notes: I personally enjoyed the second story more than the first, as Sir Stouthorn and Seafoam's interaction with one another was absolutely, for a lack of better words, outrageous. The mystical tone you gave the first story was intriguing, but the second's comedic, ridiculous tone was deliciously witty. I look forward to reading more of your excellent work.

Yours truly and absolutely,


>>2159986 Thanks for your comments gentlereader, the reasons for using ye olde English with Luna, is because I find it helps differentiate her as a character. Darkpaw is a rough and tumble diamond dog, and so he has no need for niceties. As for the writing style, the first story was designed to be a simple creation myth. So I didn't really delve too much into the deities personalities (looking at Norse and Greek myths, you don't really see much behind those gods without reading multiple myths). The second story, is more a traditional adventure romp. Unfortunately due to the contests requirements (being under 5k words), I had to trim out a lot of what actually happened as they fought, choosing to end things via deus ex machina. Kind of a lame way to end things, since in the original tale Sir Stouthorn and Seafoam actually faced a neighcromancer. But as Trixie didn't hear thing first hoof, she ended the story as best she could. But thank you for the well written and thought out critique, I'll take your suggestions to heart in my future writings.

I really enjoyed this story, especially how it played with the whole Story Within a Story mechanic. We don't see enough of that in MLP fanfics. I'm faving this so I can stay up to date on where this is going.

>>2186323 Thank you for your comments gentlereader, I primarily plan on using this side story anthology for the World Building Alliance monthly story prompts. If your interested in reading more about the universe I'm basing these stories from, feel free to read either The Great Slave King or it's sequel The Book of Water: The Marriage of the Slave King. I plan on using Trixie's storyline to tie the entire anthology of dissimilar tales together, culminating with her eventual triumph. Beyond the story within a story anything you particularity care for about either chapter?

That was a very interesting story. Sir Stouthorn reminded me a lot of Dorian from JourneyQuest.

However, you had a lot of issues with commas. There were a fair number of comma splices, for one. Secondly, all direct addresses are surrounded by commas. For example, "Hello Sir Stouthorn." should be "Hello, Sir Stouthorn." And finally, interjections are also surrounded by commas. Same idea as direct addresses.

>>2449964 Thank you for your comments gentlereader, I actually styled Sir Stouthorn after Don Quixote, Brian Blessed, and Aquaman from Batman the Brave and the Bold. If you watch the following clip you can see where I drew some of my inspiration for the character.

As you can see, I wanted to go for the over the top hero who desires to right wrongs, vanquish evil, and quest for his liege's honor.


Ah. So, does he suceed in where his past self failed, and defeats the fearsome Windmills Giants?

>>2450143 The only way to learn Sir Stouthorn's ultimate fate is by reading The Great Slave King. Inside, you'll read about his greatest adventure.

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