Monday, January 02, 2006

Welcome to War of the Gyro

Three years ago, a mutual friend introduced me to a game designer named John Harper. He had recently published the third edition of a role-playing game called Talislanta. John mentioned how they were really hoping to get people to write some supplements for the game. I responded along the lines of "what I really want to do is write a novel for it", and The War of the Gyro was born.

Frankly, now that I'm ready to let people read it, I'm having second thoughts. What seemed like a great idea while it was hiding in a drawer seems pretty weak in the daylight. I'm not sure that anyone's going to enjoy it, and I'm pretty certain some people aren't going to get past the first line. On the other hand, I'm not sure I can bring it any farther without some more eyes. I figure that if I get some people to look at it, some of them are going to say things that will help me make the novel better.

This is a beta version. This novel isn't done. All the chapters are there, but some are incomplete, and several need to be re-written. Nevertheless, the essential storyline and characters are present. Please read and enjoy and feel free to comment. I'll be publishing a chapter every few days as I edit them and format them for pdf. Here's chapter one:

"A swordsman was singing a song. And because he was 1500 miles from home in a strange city where he knew no one, and because he guessed the natives wouldn't appreciate Zandu love songs here, he was singing to his sword."


Anonymous Zirconia said...

I am not familiar with the world of Talislanta, but so far, it seems quite interesting. It's like I'm reading a tourbook of the place. What is both a strength and a drawback of the first chapter is the amount of description. It's almost too much, like a "triple-threat" chocolate cupcake. The dialog is pretty tight and funny in parts. I do wonder if there is too much speaking directly to the audience by giving away so much information in single conversation (i.e. "We Kang...") I'm just curious. I'm reading the text like the newbie I am.

11:54 PM  
Anonymous James said...

Great read with sharp dialog and snappy pacing. I'm truly looking forward to the remaining story.

7:39 AM  
Blogger galetea said...

I am going to totally enjoy logging on every few days for more of this story. :) There's nothing like a good tale of a gentleman mercenary to get the blood flowing! Especially one as well mannered as yours. :)

My only crit is an echo of ziconia, really. My favorite fantasy stories have been ones in which the world the characters exist in are revealed on a need to know basis through subtle character development. Tolkien was a history buff and often interrupted battles for lessons in the pasts of Middle Earth. It's hard to find a middle ground when all you want to do is tell a story!

9:35 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

Yep, you've nailed one of the challenges of writing in a Fantasy setting. There's a lot to introduce and not a lot of time to do it. I also suffer from a love of the Talislanta setting. I can't resist showing off as much of it as I can!

10:32 AM  
Anonymous Jens said...

Hey, that's good stuff. Can't wait to read on! Delivering an insult... what a good peg to hang the novel on.

Just a minor flaw:

"And as events were soon to
show, he could not have been more correct."

I don't like that last sentence. It's too out-worn and adds nothing to the story. Just leave it out.

10:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent begining. It needs tightening up though. Remove conjunctions which start sentances (and, but etc.). They aren't needed and slow the pace of the story.

The insult delivery idea is great.

I plan on reading as you post!
Aaron - another Tal fan (and writer).

12:15 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Thanks Aaron. The starting with conjunctions is a habit I have a very hard time breaking, alas.

12:20 PM  

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