• Member Since 1st Mar, 2014
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Sorry, man. Ain't nothing interesting to see here. Just move right along, thank you.



The night is young. It has been a week since the Battle of the Bands. An argument breaks out at a dining room table, with three teenage girls. Someone gets thrown out.

Even unable to sing well, a siren is never silent.

This is how it feels to be Sonata Dusk, right now.

Chapters (5)
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Comments ( 59 )

You're off to a great start! I like the way that the impressions tie together - instead of a narrative description, I enjoy how the impressions merge together for a similar effect. Chapter Two was a big step up from Chapter One, so as this comes into place, I know it'll continue to be more engaging. Of course, how will Adagio be handling all of this is the monster-sized question.

Please continue and I look forward to seeing how your characterization of the three defeated Sirens takes shape!

Not bad, I enjoyed the overall sense of the story, it was just a bit fragmented and clunky. Try separating large paragraphs smaller ones, that should help a bit with the flow.

5208167 Could you be more specific with where the "clunk" was? Was it sentence structure, paragraphization, word choice, or such?

5207482 I'm kinda curious what you mean by "impressions tie/merge together."

Right now, her voice soared, soared as high as her new ambitions. There was no band or orchestra behind her, no backup vocals or fellow singers. She did not need them, never again. She sang a melody, a proud melody. She sang that the same melody again and again, each time a little more decorated, flourished. She built on that melody, built a song around that melody. It sounded bold, proud… beautiful. Part of her dared not believe it, that she could sing again. In any other moment, she could not have sung, would not believe it. But here, now, she believed. And she sung.

Vaguely, it registered in her mind that, across the hall, Sonata was singing too.

I'm imprecise, but that's where I'm going with this - the impression you give of determination, of freedom, of emotion... and then adding that Sonata was trying the same thing. The whole thing gave a sense of moving on, moving forward, even though there's not a clear idea of what Aria is going to do next. Make more sense?

5208714 Yeah. Huh. Emergent storytelling! :yay:

Why do I suddenly feel like I'm in trouble? :pinkiehappy:

5211785 It's not that. It's just that I didn't consciously put that stuff in, but you saw it anyway. I mean, I was going for less narrative and more descriptive, but I'm always curious about how people read into and between the lines of what I write.

The question of course, is what will Adagio do with the rage and the resignation that you so artfully expressed? Well done, my friend. I truly enjoyed this darker chapter.

This whole set is very moving, and the style in which it's presented adds a lot to the mood. Just phenomenal, imo.

I was actually thinking while driving yesterday about how you might handle Adagio - and the "thoughts of ending her life" approach is one thing that came to mind almost right away with my take on her personality and drive, so it's really interesting to see a notion of that here.

I get the feeling that these are just the beginning in something more? Or was the intent for them to be one-shots leaving things open to imagination? The last sentence in the final full paragraph on this one (with the word "ceiling in it, to avoid spoiling anything down here) leaves me not entirely sure of what the implication is - but perhaps that's just me.

And on another note, your Aria story here inspirited me to write some poetic style text to go along with the art piece I'm working on the moment. When I do get it up on dA, I'll be sure to include a link to these. ;)

5219002 Oh dear. "Moving," "phenomenal," and I inspired you to write something of your own? What is the world coming to? :pinkiegasp:

The story in its conception was only going to be a collection of connected one-shots. The next one was supposed to be the last one, in part because I didn't think I was gonna write more (and I'm running out of phases of the night). That said, I did think up a few more shorts connected to this, and a longer narrative, although whether that will be presented in short or story form is something I haven't decided yet.

There is certainly some ambiguity I left with that thread of the story, although I'm not sure if "my" ambiguity is the same as "yours," but there's nothing necessarily wrong with them being different.

5219116 To follow up, I finished the art piece tonight. Should have gone to bed a few hours ago, but was in the stride.


It's more of a sad and broken Aria than yours here (hence the title), but again, the flow of the poetic bits in the description was sort of inspired by the writing style in these.

Cheers. ;)

That was really weird. Huh.

I still find this to be pretty weird, but I like where you're going with this. You have the occasional odd sentence

Not like Adagio’s plans had worked out, as her, Aria’s, her terrible singing voice reminded her.

(the middle is super clunky), but the writing so far has been pretty effective for being so short. Good stuff.

Oh wow. I had thought the parallel structure in the previous chapters to be merely cute. But now? The parallel structure is pretty awesome. It really set up nicely for this chapter, and the sheer emotion expressed by Adagio.

This was pretty fantastic. Great stuff.

5222520 So we've gone from "weird" to "still pretty weird" to "pretty fantastic." I'll take it.

Although, weird? Really? Look, I know revelation by taco duckling sailor isn't commonplace, but, come on.... :derpytongue2:

I love parallels and patterns, perhaps to a fault. That said, if you had settled for "cute," let alone "pretty awesome," I would have taken it. :twilightsmile:

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I loved Sonata's chapter. Playing the adorable innocent, I don't think she ever quite realized what she was doing was wrong. Adagio and Aria did it, so why shouldn't she? Also not surprised that they would attack her first after the loss, it's not like the poor girl has anything to protect herself with. She would be broken, driven off by the attacks of her former friends. Aria's teasing, she could take. Not both her and Adagio at once.

At first she would be alone. But everypony knows she has a pink-haired kindred heart. And now that she can find real friends, perhaps her happy, innocent heart can blossom and grow.

Aria I'm not too sure about. We get very little about her character in the movie, aside from the fact she respects no authority and considers other beneath her. Still, the rebellion that defines her would eventually tear her away from Adagio. I hadn't realized this, but without Sonata to attack and put down, Aria has nothing to do, and no one to feel superior to. She isn't the brightest, and need Adagio to plan in the past. Now she doesn't.

Still, Aria is very aggressive and mean, so I couldn't see her hanging out with the Mane 6 anytime soon. (Even Sonata is a stretch, only Pinkie could realistically see her innocence and purity) I don't know what that girl would do on her own, but it probably isn't anything good.

The one thing that's come to my mind as I watch Adagio Dazzle is Controlling. Quite ironic, given that sirens do mind control. Everything about this girl, her band, and her motives revolve around control. She dictates when Sonata and Aria are allowed to laugh. (She cuts them off at certain points, with a flick of her hands) She uses her charm and cunning to break apart others and use them to her own designs, even without singing, she could make the other bands attack the Rainbooms. Beyound that, she is a siren, and controlling this world is her ultimate goal. One she will now never achieve.

I don't think Adagio would ever tolerate Sonata running off to Pinkie and the Mane 6. Sonata is one of the two things she has power over, someone like Adagio would never let that go, ever. Even though she can't sing, Adagio can still scheme, plan, and undercut at just the right place to influence others. She would undermine Sonata's confidence in trusting their sworn enemies, fill her somewhat gullible mind with horrors of being absolutly alone, without anyone at all in the world.

Come to think of it, that would make a great story. Sonata's eventual escape from the ones who control and hurt her. But I'm off topic.

I kind of agree that Adagio would rather die than lose control, now that I really think of it. Just not sure if she would ever lose so much that she lost all hope. Something to think about.

Amazing little story, my hat is off.

5223154 There certainly are many dimensions to the Sirens that we don't see, and it's open to a plurality of interpretations. My interpretation certainly suggests a set of more emotionally vulnerable Sirens, in part, perhaps, because I didn't want to make them too villainous in this story, and it's pretty hard to make them angry, bitter, and controlling without being too villainous.

On the other hand, I didn't want this to be too much of a redemption story, and I'll confess I'm not sure I succeeded in that regard. It's not easy, having the Sirens move towards a happier, deeper understanding of who they are without necessarily making that a heroic change in perspective. I tried to give them drive without purpose, so to speak. It probably didn't help that I accelerated the interaction between the HuMane Five and Sunset. Looking where I plan on going, for better or worse, I probably will end up writing a redemption story.

Thank you for the thoughts and kind words.

Good descriptions, but try to space your paragraphs out more. Otherwise it's a big clunky mess after a big clunky mess. But good! :pinkiehappy:

Dear God this is depressing I just want to find all three of them and give them a hug. because hugs make everything better

Good chapter, and the tail end of that AN was gold.

This style of yours is still super weird. But holy crap, is it powerful.

I love it.

Next thing I knew, I was singing "Siren night, holy night....

You monster :heart:

A nice set of character pieces for the post movie sirens.

Oh my gosh, that's amazing! Completely amazing! Good work.

Pick. A. Tense. :ajbemused: You can't keep mixing up the present and past tense in your writing, it's incredibly distracting.

5241183 This is what happens when I try to release stuff without sending it to my editor first. Even if she never gets back to me....

I will say I saw the tense differences, and I just couldn't bring my self to bring to make the change at the time. Fear not, reason has won out in the end, and along with the next chapter will come a balance patch to Dawn, hopefully fixing the tense confusion.

5242759 It's cool, it happens. :twilightsmile:

So, the Magic Alicorn/Captain Planet of the Rainbows didn´t take the Dazzlings´ talent for singing entirely, but only the old wicked songs of hatred and domination. Just punishment, yet not without mercy.

This was absolutely fantastic. The style was so unique, so powerful...

This was an absolute pleasure to read.

*sniff* Amazing. :pinkiesad2:

Sonata gave them foundation. Aria gave them momentum. Adagio gave them direction. They were the Sirens. And they sung.

To me, this is where it all snapped into place in my brain. :twilightsmile:

I enjoyed your story quite a bit. Thank you very much! It challenged me... the narration style was different from what I'm used to and it forced me to pay attention closely, read things over, and most of all go slowly and visualize what was happening. I look forward to your next idea! :pinkiesmile:


It challenged me... the narration style was different from what I'm used to and it forced me to pay attention closely, read things over, and most of all go slowly and visualize what was happening.

Excellent! That means I have a future in writing works that will be studied in educational institutions many years after I leave this side of eternity!

So at the moment I am of the habit of putting some priority on reading things in the aftermath of Rainbow Rocks. There seems to be quite a bit of material being churned out, and it seems I am not alone in having been inspired by the movie, or by the Dazzlings in particular. The volume of material of course means that despite my high interest in the subject, a lot of new stories are being condemned to the "read later" pile, to possibly never actually be seen. While this particular story was on my pile, something I intended to someday get to, you can thank "The Last Roundup" for getting it off the pile and actually read.

The good.

First off, this story is... something. It obviously inspired me to write this review. The incredibly short version of the story is that in the aftermath of the Battle of the Bands finale, the Sirens are adjusting to their new lives, grieving over the loss of their identity as singers, and getting through the process to continue living and embrace their new lives. This bit of story is a very popular one to write about, as the movie leaves us begging to know just what happens to these three after they step into our minds on screen with so much charisma and moxie it is ridiculous. In that regard, this particular telling of that tale is fairly acceptable. It has some conflict between the three, but it is handled in a much more believable fashion than I typically see in this story as told by others. Also, the human 6 are not treated as mindless fix-its, with one or more sirens fleeing her comrades to be insta-redeemed simply by having lunch with the Rainbooms a few times.

That the story lets us get past that conflict and on to their reforging themselves is a strong point of this telling. Rather than give up singing, they each find or refind their connection to song, get past the anger of no longer being good at it, and just fight to do what singing is about: expression. In the end, they not only find that, but re-find what they are to each other, and what it is that makes them such a solid trio.

While at this point not especially original, what the story is about is good. It is a better version that I typically see where one of the sirens, usually Sonata, is exiled by the other two and so on. You're avoiding most of the pitfalls of this story that others tend to fall into, with mixed results. You have a good foundation.

Characterization is another strong point of the story. You've given us a fairly intense look at not just one, but all three of the sirens, and you've managed to expand on their canon slice of the picture and fleshed them out just a bit more, and in a direction each that is easy to accept and entertaining to explore. That said, it does feel like Sonata and Aria get a bit more of the treatment, while Adagio is sort of... there. Not entirely ignored, but her character feels dangerously close to "afterthought" territory.

On to the technical stuff. In other words... no, not the bad, the ugly. Oh boy.

My apologies for that dreadful chunk of grammar and formatting. It was a choice between style and grammar, and alas, poor Yorick, style won this time.

While this is a quote from your author note from "Midnight," it really applies to the whole story. It is also horrendously wrong. There was no choice between style and grammar, there was simply a blatant lack of understanding of grammar. I'm honestly baffled by the comments I see others have made praising the style of this telling, because I frankly do not see what style choice or value was gained from things like flopping from tense to tense like a fish on land, unpredictable shifts in POV, and even shifts between third limited and third omniscient. Hell, you even go to future tense for no apparent reason at one point.

These are not style choices. You are not some talented writer deciding to purposefully break the rules of grammar for the sake of expressing something artistic. What you have accomplished is taking the readability of this pieces and swilling it around in the toilet. While someone like ConningOffier there expresses the result as a compliment, claiming to have been "challenged" the results are a good example of why this was badly written. You force someone to reread something and interpret what the hell it is they are looking at. The point of style and grammar is to immerse your reader, to convey your imagery as easily and cleanly as possible.

In addition to that, we also have incredibly problematic pacing. We're given at most a single short scene per chapter. It certainly feels a lot longer than it really is, because we're forced to spend so much time rereading any given part to figure out what has been said. If the grammar problems were all cleaned up so the story actually flows freely, we'd run into the problem that we'd be at the end in no time flat.

Inparticular, an example of such a pacing problem: the meeting between Sonata and Pinkie. This is a major part of the story. It is pivotal. This is a scene that sets the entire rest of the story. But rather than telling us the story about how it went through, we're merely told it happened.

In Aria's chapter, she too has something resembling a change of heart. I detected some sort of mention that she'd like to be rivals with Rainbow Dash. While that is an interesting prospect, we're left wondering because it is sort of tacked on, and nothing comes of it ever again.

You give us a chapter for Adagio, where she is contemplating suicide and several choices in how to perform it. This could be a powerful piece of story, but as with everything else, we're rushed through it, and it's over before we're given any opportunity to really feel the depths of Adagio's depression. We're sort of just off-handedly told that she's pretty sad and thinking of ending it all. Wait, what?

I managed to find several positive things to say about the story. The problem is that it took a fair amount of digging, and I am being rather generous with the praise. While the things I said are 100% true, I have to say that the execution, due to the horrid mangling of grammar, really ruins most of what positive value those things have. You have a solid foundation. The story you're telling is good, and the choices and expansion of the known with your own material make for a good piece, but in order to see and understand that we have to translate your words into something that makes sense. This story is in desperate need of editing. If you want to take what is at this point just a solid foundation, and actually turn it into a good story, it will take a lot of major revision.

With the errors fixed, it would be easier to understand what places you could expand on, to really tell your story better. Clean up the foundation, then build on it.

Excellent! That means I have a future in writing works that will be studied in educational institutions many years after I leave this side of eternity!

At the moment, no. This story wouldn't even serve as a decent example of what not to do. It isn't so bad as to have value as a study subject, it simply makes some very blatant and basic mistakes rather thoroughly.

You've had plenty of praise. Some people, at this point, might say, "I'm sorry to have to ruin the good mood," but I'm not that sort of person. Hopefully you'll gain more benefit from my review than the praise. I see no reason to apologize for that. Indeed, I'd like to take a moment to point out that I am frankly baffled at the praise the others are heaping upon you. I am worried that in the absence of some honest critique, you might have been led to believe that you were doing well, and coast on, continuing the course. I really do hope that you examine what it is you have written, seek the assistance of one or more competent editors, and actually continue to work on this story. Barring that, this is a situation where it is actually harmful to get nothing but good praise.

5269276 Graci for the critique. I was pretty facetious with the "educational institution" remark, but it's always good to get a hard look at your own work.

Well, back to the ol' keyboard....

I haven't read any other comments as I wanted to give you my view on this, so forgive me if I unintentionally parrot anyone.

First off I wish to open with the fact that I did enjoy the story. I believe it was a wonderful character piece. Here's the but though, it has an obviously experimental structure to it. While this structure is not enough to kill it for me I find it a bit off-putting. I will give you props for being consistent with it though. We are told how the sirens feel, when we could have been shown and come to our own conclusions. The refusal to not name any other characters besides Sonata, Aria, and Adagio is as understandable as it is irritating. Writing without direct dialog was also an interesting but awkward choice. It just doesn't all fit together well in this story at all if you were to ask me and I suppose you haven't.

Maybe its something about the pace and repeated pattern. Maybe it is the telling of the characters rather than the showing. Maybe its the awkward language when dealing with other characters. Maybe it is none or all of those things. I just feel that the story was interesting, had a good premise, but wasn't as well executed as it could have been. It was good, not great, and i wanted great.

But then, who am I to talk? I'm just some loser on the internet. :twilightblush:

Beautiful style. I really enjoyed and envisioned this one. You did a great job!

5269697 I guess there's the kicker. There are both more flattering and more stinging words to use than "experimental," but the moment I decided to write in this manner I doomed it to be of questionable technical quality, at least initially.

I will still look for an editor, to clean it up a bit, but I do hope I can retain some of its charm while improving it.

I really enjoyed this story. What others have said about the tense changes and grammar issues is fairly true, but I think the other tricks you had up your sleeve made up for that quite well. I rather liked having to figure out which she was being talked about from the context -- though some of those could use a bit more context -- and I really liked the way you described how they each found their songs again. It's not a masterpiece -- and when I read it I wasn't expecting one -- yet I definitely found it good enough to recommend to others. You could certainly try to fix this up, but that time could also be used to start on a new story, with the lessons learned from this one fresh in your mind.

That's just a suggestion, though, it's up to you. Thanks for sharing this!

Interesting. Needs Grammatical TLC.

Author Interviewer

While I can't say I enjoyed this, per se, it's a quick read and I think you chose well in using no dialogue to tell it. Also, I feel like your writing was getting better as you progressed. Keep at it!

This is a beautiful and inspiring story.

I don't often correct grammar, but you seem to consistently use the past perfect "sung" in place of the past "sang." It's a little jarring to read "they sung" instead of "they sang" or "they had sung."

Off to a start.
Here's something I caught.
She would be offered a change of change of clothes, an ear to hear her story.
A little redundant there.

Wow... dunno what to say.
Interesting and strong concept.
The execution, however... It needs some help.
Loved there was no 'speech' in the story.
Never sacrifice grammar for style. Without grammar, it's like sword fighting without a sword. Sooner or later, you'll get the point (And I do believe the pun is intended). Grammar is the brush with which you compose your story. You may do impressionist, or abstract, but, you still require grammar. Otherwise, it's like a baby finger painting for the first time. You might see something there, but, without the refinement, it's just a bunch of paint on the paper or canvas.

So no actual words and constant singing junk. So boring AND annoying.

My one regret is that I didn't give Sonata the chapter titled "Dusk."

If you did then I'd freak out at the resemblance.

A vector project I'm working on for these three reminded me of this chapter earlier this morning, so I came back to give it a re-read. Despite all the technical feedback you've received, I still love the "raw"-ness of the emotion that this whole story evokes.


This comment honestly baffles me. I find the lack of any dialog only strengthens the power behind the emotions here. Not criticizing you for that observation, mind you - I just had a completely opposite take on it.

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