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Re: How Long did it take?

Posted: Sun, 29 Dec 2019 9:04 am
by Rath Darkblade
Well ............ in Tolkien's defence, LOTR is a masterpiece of research, revision, and persistence. People forget now that Tolkien was a Professor of Anglo-Saxon language, literature, and history, so he didn't exactly have a lot of free time, what with setting curricula for students and so on. :) Also, being a professor might have helped him find the right names and tales, but the research task would have been immense - especially as he did it on his own, and with no internet sites or online encyclopedias to help him. Just his own persistence.

Finally, the task of writing LOTR (and getting it to a publisher) was interrupted by two little things called a World War and the post-war depression of the late 40s and early 50s. ;) So many things were rationed, like meat, bread, milk, paper, ink etc. Under the circumstances, I think it's a miracle that LOTR got to a publisher at all!

Comparing Tolkien's 16 years of LOTR to Stephanie Meyer's 3 months of writing "Twilight" is hardly fair. To start with, "Twilight" is derivative - it's derived from fan-fiction - so it's hardly original. Secondly, the characters are one-dimensional, the plot is non-existent .... I'm sure you all know the criticisms. So why is it so successful? Two words: pre-pubescent girls. :P

Personally, it took me about 18 months to write Stephen's adventures: about 6 months to write draft 0, 1-2 months to learn about outlines (and do them), and another 10 months in writing and editing the rest of the story. It's pretty much finished now and ready for a beta. :) Thank you, Cage and Rkcapps, for your critiques! :)

Re: How Long did it take?

Posted: Mon, 30 Dec 2019 8:15 pm
by Rath Darkblade
Cage, what do you mean by "going all 'talking sword' about it"? I don't understand. Do you mean telling the reader, rather than showing him/her? :) For instance:

Wenceslas, that black-hearted villain, was behind the door. I knew it. I knew it because my sword told me so.


Instead, this:

Someone hummed from behind the door. I recognised the tune - the Imperial March tune from Star Wars! Wenceslas's favourite song! And he liked humming. Right, that bastard ... he's gonna get what's coming to him.

I put down my pack beside the door. With my left hand, I reached inside and withdrew a sponge from within, then held it over my sword-scabbard. With my right hand, I took hold of the swordhilt and slowly drew the sword, putting the sponge over it to avoid making the familiar 'schliiiiing!' noise and alerting someone.

The humming didn't stop. Good. My sword was ready; I flung down the sponge, unslung my shield from its holding place on my back, took it up securely on my left hand. Good.

The humming stopped. Wenceslas's familiar voice said: "Oh, for ... Vincent, you're out there, yes? Don't pretend you're not. Just come in and we'll settle this, man to man."


It's a bit rushed, but it's a simple example of show vs. tell. :) Is that what you mean by 'talking sword'?