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The Oracle...A Beginning

Discussion in 'Writers' Room' started by beknwaka, Jun 14, 2014.

  1. beknwaka

    beknwaka New Member

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    So I want to start my novel with something catchy, something that grabs your attention and makes you want to read. So how about this?

    The Oracle existed.

    She had existed before the Eternal Emperor when The Empire was ruled by many different families, when nobility had jostled for power. She watched young men of court manipulate and posture, forming alliances for the benefit of their family, bargaining marriages and managing heirs. She had even watched on as wars had raged, bright coloured banners streaming across open fields as men fought for the throne.

    She had existed when a new race of humanity had been born blessed by the Gods. Young children grew with specific skills, able to interact and manipulate the world around them. She had watched people react in both fear and awe unable to understand children who could talk to the Gods, create nature, control weather and with incredible strength, among other things. She had taken pity on those shunned by parents, helping them find safety among friends.

    She had existed when Chaos had taken control of the Empire, a seeping and subtle power that manipulated the hearts of men. The intangible darkness grew like a plague across the land, only noticeable by the sense of gloom as people went about their jobs. She had stood among the cheering crowds as a young, proud man had walked up the glowing palace steps, taking his place upon the throne. Flanked by a small army of priests, bright red robes flowing in the warm breeze, a reminder of his power and of the Chaos that he would bring. She had listened to his glowing speech, his words of encouragement and promises that the future would be promising. Hearing the undertone of threat, the cold edge of his voice revealing subtle hints of pain and suffering that he would bring.

    The Eternal Emperor had taken his throne.

    That had been the birth of the Priesthood, a religion that grew like cancer. She had existed as the red robed demons had spread running like blood through the veins of the Empire, outlawing worship of all other Gods. She witnessed the burning of temples and the torture of their occupants with a sore heart. Huge stone monasteries were erected throughout the Empire, imposing black structures that marred the beautiful green countryside.

    The Oracle had stood on the edge of crowds in small villages, listening to the twisted preaching of the scarlet imposters. Heard as skilled individuals were converted into demons and bad omens, made to pay with their lives for the colour of their eyes. Whereas blacked eyed children were called ‘Blessed’, chosen warriors of the one true god and were indoctrinated into the ranks of red.
     
    stigmaticman likes this.
  2. Polly Parrot

    Polly Parrot Moderator Staff Member

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    You may want to rethink your usage of adjectives. Using your final paragraph as an example:

    The Oracle had stood on the edge of crowds in small villages, listening to the twisted preaching of the scarlet imposters. Heard as skilled individuals were converted into demons and bad omens, made to pay with their lives for the colour of their eyes. Whereas blacked eyed children were called ‘Blessed’, chosen warriors of the one true god and were indoctrinated into the ranks of red.

    Also, "blacked eyed"? Did they all get punched in the face?
     
  3. beknwaka

    beknwaka New Member

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    Haha thanks polly, that is really good feedback and will definitely think about it :)
     
  4. stigmaticman

    stigmaticman Active Member

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    well, the next thing I would do if I were writing the book is find a way to show those events instead of describing them. But I like the idea very much. I would call this start your 'mission statement' and not the actual literary work itself.
     
  5. beknwaka

    beknwaka New Member

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    Thanks Stigmaticman, I was thinking that I would like to start the story with a bit of background, almost as though there could be a prequel..have also written parts of stories around the Gods and how they came to be at war...very fantasy I know.

    The actual story itself focuses on a group of talented individuals who go to war with the priesthood and the king and the challenges they come up against. The problem I am finding is where to start and end the stories!! As you say there is a lot more that I could do with this part and it would make a good mission statement.

    Perhaps I should take a modern day standpoint and then divulge backwards into the history, like revealing little bits at a time, like jumping along the time line.

    I will have a think and thank you again for your feedback
     
  6. stigmaticman

    stigmaticman Active Member

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    I would start by setting a scene, and working in the details by letting the events show what's going on, and not simply telling. But I know you wanted to set the stage for all that. My advice would be to start the story in the near beginning of the heat of the controversy. From what I've seen so far, it sounds like those events are vital to the story, and it left me dying to know what it was all about. But you be the judge of where to start it. Like you said, it could be a better story just filling in the details as you go. But that first bit was juicy!

    Example: Instead of saying, 'The man confronted the leader' I would say something like 'The man made his way hastily through the crowd, pointed a finger, and replied, 'Who are you to say you must guide us through these troubled times!?'

    that's not a shining example, but readers love picking up on hints and clues to what's going on, and it's a more a powerful message seeing things in action, as opposed to explaining them in all the details.

    Good luck in this endeavor.:)
     

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