03-08-2007 06:53 PM
“We can’t just kill her. She is such a small thing; she can’t be dangerous.” Another man spoke up he had nothing in his hands glanced around nervously as if he wished he were somewhere else.
“But she is one of them. For all we know she could put a curse on us right now!” A man raised his arm as if to shield himself.
The other hesitated glancing first at the fire, then at the girl then at the other man. “We-we can’t kill her it’s not right… my wife and I- we’ll take her.”
A third man spoke up gazing in disbelive at his comrade, “You can’t be serious Reyes? She’s got witches blood, you could be endangering yourself and your wife! Think of Grace she’s pregnant!”
Reyes didn’t reply but slowly walked over to the young child. Stopping he crouched down so that he was at her eye level. “Don’t be afraid, I won’t let anyone hurt you. You going to come home with me and stay with my wife Grace and I.”
The girl just stared, her brown eyes as wide as coins. Yes, they looked like copper coins dancing in the flames, he told himself. Holding out his hand he waited. She wouldn’t look at him but kept her gaze fixed on the burning wagon. Slowly he edged his hand under hers and slowly stood and led her away from the wagon, and away from the only life she had ever know.
Ok well I have never really written SF before or actuality read it but I have read Fantasy so that is what this is. Not saying that I am opposed to learning how to write SF but I have already written this prologue so I decided to keep it. This story is about a gypsy girl who grows up believing she is "normal" when she figures out that she is a gypsy she leaves her home to travel with her people and learn more about them on the way she meets a young man who believes that the gypsies should over through the king. Syeira (the girl) doesn't believe this but must convince the gypsies not to go to war. A hard task for only a seventeen year old girl.
Please tell me what you think of the prologue
03-08-2007 07:37 PM
Your prologue is a compelling scene, one that's well-written and vivid.
Your plot idea (let's call it the orphaned child with powers plot) is a familiar one to storytelling (think about Moses and the river basket), but that's okay--it's what you do with this story icon that will prove it to be a good tale or not.
I would question your child's reactions to the burning wagon. Is she unconcerned about her parents? She seems to be old enough to have an emotional response to the fire, and to the hatred of the farmers, which she can recognize. Does she know her parents are dead, or is she in a state of shock?
This opening scene might also be a place to give us a hint of her future potential. Since the orphaned child plot is so familiar, we need something unusual to pull us into story and make us want to continue to read. What if, for example, the little girl knows about vengeance, and makes an inner vow to exert her vengeance on those who burned her parents? We can see the germ of future action in those thoughts, and will want to know how she can make them happen.
In any case, your writing is good, so keep up the story, whether this is fantasy or sf.
03-09-2007 01:36 PM
And why precisely do you think of the girl as a gypsy? Do you intend to draw on actual gypsy lore, or is it just a kind of shorthand for someone with psychic powers?
03-11-2007 03:28 AM
The Gyptyans of Pullman's Dark Materials or the Tinkers of Jordan's Wheel of Time are example of fantasy gypsies. Both are very different and benefit from being different from real gypsies.
03-11-2007 12:40 PM
03-11-2007 07:21 PM
You raise a number of issues for the reader, about background and setting and characters: do these people really have magic? How dangerous is it for Reyes and Grace to take the girl in? Will she be persecuted as "the strange one" as she grows up?
I kind of hope not because these are really common story questions for these kinds of tales. How could you vary this? What basic element could you change that would change the story itself? Just as an example, what if the girl is an alien? What if she's a robot? What if she deliberately set fire to the wagon and killed her parents?
Vonda McIntyre's novel "Dreamsnake" takes a pretty standard premise and turns it on its head: A woman goes from village to village, doing "magic" with venomous snakes which she induces to bite her patients. Magic, right? The twist is that the snakes are genetically engineered to produce vaccines, etc., instead of venom, and the woman is a healer. It's a very good book (won a bunch of awards when it originally appeared) and I recommend it as a good example of how to turn ideas on their heads.
03-12-2007 03:13 PM
I agree with some other posts here that I thought the girl was a little too unemotional. Does this take place in a mythical land? Or is it actually some point in time with a real King? You'll have to do research if it is a real King of the past about those times, if not thats fine I always enjoy books of different worlds
Keep at it!