Aug 02 2010

NicKenny’s Review Forum

Published by at 5:55 pm under Review Forums

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67 responses so far

67 Responses to “NicKenny’s Review Forum”

  1. NicKennyon 09 Aug 2010 at 4:48 am

    Right I should probably start with the whole global view before going into the plot or characters. So here it goes. The world is almost identically the same apart from the vitally important fact that between two to three million people have… for want of a better word, superpowers which is generally unknown to the world. About half of these are were-beasts who are people who have the ability to turn into animals and are plagued by a curse which causes them to lose possesion of their bodies and abilities during the full moon to their more animalistic alter ego’s. When they reach full maturity they lose control completely and become creatures solely concerned with becoming as powerful as they can. The Grand Council rule the world’s mutant population consisting of thirteen of the most powerful mutants. The strongest of the council is referred to as the Grand Mage and is generally a sorceror. The Grand Council’s base is in the undiscovered catacombs underneath Milan in Italy.

  2. NicKennyon 09 Aug 2010 at 5:01 am

    Another important part of the series (by the way I’m planning to write a series of around 5 novels) are seven weapons of serious destructive power. They take the form of swords in most cases, though they can transform to be any object. They’re known as Excalibur (yeah, you probably saw that coming), Clarent, Durendal, Joyeuse, Almace, Curtana and Zulfiqar. If they all end up together they’ll combine to form a weapon of absolute power with the capability to destroy the earth. Very important in the later books, not so much in the first.

  3. NicKennyon 09 Aug 2010 at 5:42 am

    The series is a superhero/Arthurian/biblical blend. The main character, Adam Lawless, was born seemingly without powers. His parents, his mother a sorceress and his father had the ability to bring inaminate objects to life, decided to give him wings in fear that he would never develop powers. And some other abilities like stronger and lighter bones, the ability to need less oxygen to survive, better reflexes and fitness level but nothing too insane. His parents go missing when he’s young and he’s taken care of by Sidney, a talking metal dog created by his parents. His only power is mimicry. Adam is then attacked by a group of hitmen, who kill his girlfriend and goes on the run, hiding in cities and living on the streets. He later is found by his girlfriend, who has regenerative abilities and a friend of hers who later turns out to be a necromancer, who kills people to gain their abilities, and also hired the hitmen. Will post more of story later.

  4. Cassandraon 09 Aug 2010 at 10:44 am

    So far as a storyline goes, I believe that this is very interesting. I’m not sure if you’re writing this in prose or graphic novel form, but if it’s in prose, I’d be interested in helping you work on characters, plotline, dialogue, pacing, and all that jazz. (I don’t think I’d be much help with panels because I haven’t done much beta-work with comics.) Either way, I’d really enjoy helping you with any development or pacing issues that you have with your story.

    Cassandra

    p.s. If you want, you can email me at: cassandrarose526 at hotmail .com

  5. NicKennyon 09 Aug 2010 at 12:18 pm

    Thanks! It’s going to be a novel not a comic book. Although first I probably should write down some of the things that I suspect may not be received well. Adam Lawless, the main character, his parents are King Arthur and Guinevere. They’ve lived this long due to the philosopher’s stone formula that was discovered by Guinevere’s father Merlin who happens to be the Grand Mage in the Grand Council, although Adam is not aware of this in the beginning. Though Arthur and Guinever do die before the start of the novel in a fight against the villian’s father in which everyone concerned dies and cause an explosion which causes earthquakes to occur worldwide. Also a large part of the novel takes place in purgatory where all the… mutants, for lack of a better word, go when they die. Adam and his friends are sent there along with the villians because the Council are worried that if they fought on earth a similar chaos would occur, killing a large amount of people. Purgatory can only be entered through a weak point, where universes collide, under the hill of calvery in Jerusalem. The entrance to heaven is beneath the Vatican City and I havent decided on hell.

  6. Cassandraon 09 Aug 2010 at 12:42 pm

    Is there any plot significance to his parents being Arthur and Guinevere or is it more for kicks? The only thing I wonder is how that particular piece blends seamlessly into the overall plot development. But without seeing it, it’s hard to tell how it works. I do like the purgatory idea. Especially if the book concentrates on them trying to fight their way out. Also, who or what–if anything–are they trying to save in this book?

    If you’re looking for something in the states, maybe Vegas. Or ironically, LA — not so much the city of angels, eh?

    In the Bible, Jesus compares hell to Gehenna, which refers to the Valley of Hinnom in Jerusalem. This may be another place that you may consider to be the entrance of hell if you’re looking to make references to Biblical passages in this book.

    And just wondering, is there significance to his name being Adam? Perhaps as a comparison to the first man? ^_^

  7. NicKennyon 09 Aug 2010 at 2:15 pm

    Cassandra

    Well his parents being Arthur and Guinevere is sort of central to the plot, especially the first novel. I’m pretty sure it’ll work. The protagonists aren’t trying to save anything, except themselves as the villian, the necromancer, wants to kill them and absorb their abilities and has made a few attempts on several of the characters so they’re fighting to protect themselves. As to where hell meets earth, I don’t think anywhere in Jerusalem would work as purgatory opens in Calvery. Perhaps have it somewhere in America. There is no significance in his name being Adam, I just liked it. Though that is a good idea.

  8. B. Macon 09 Aug 2010 at 2:34 pm

    I thought it was pretty funny that the Percy Jackson movie placed the entrance to hell in Hollywood. 😀 I would have picked Detroit, myself. (Or, for a similar feel to Vegas but less expected, Miami).

  9. NicKennyon 09 Aug 2010 at 3:02 pm

    I’ll have to think on it. I’ll need some sort of logical reason. Then again… Miami Heat…

  10. NicKennyon 09 Aug 2010 at 3:55 pm

    I’ll go into some of the character’s now.
    These are the good guys. The main character and his team.

    Adam Lawless is the main protaginist. Haven’t decided on an alias yet. He’s Irish and, as I’ve previously mentioned, has wings and also has the ability to replicate other powers which he gains upon physical contact. His parent’s went missing a undecided amount of time ago. He’s reluctant to be a superhero and just wants a normal live, causing some of the other characters to believe that he’s a coward, particularly Arc (real name Eric Justice). However, once he realises that he can’t keep running from the villian he becomes more heroic, taking charge of the team. He does well as the team’s leader and although he does occasionally take reckless chances, the only life at stake is normally his. By the end of the book he’s gained the respect of the whole group, even those who originally doubted him.

    Eric Justice. Arc. American, egotistical and born into money. Possibly working in the tv industry. Supplies a lot of the comedy within the group and is the butt of the rest. Thinks that he’d do the best job in charge despite all other opinions. Has the ability to generate electricity and to hit objects several feet away with it

    Luke Robinson. Peacemaker. Nationality undecided. The backbone of the group. Originally working as Siren’s bodyguard, he keeps the team together and becomes Angel’s right-hand man and his best friend. Tough, unstoppable but believing in using the smallest amount of force neccesary to get the job done. Has the ability to remove powers and to knock out someone by touch.

    Rose Williams. Siren. Possibly British. An internationally known singer with the ability to control thoughts through her voice. Uses her ability to gain this reputation. Considers the whole superhero thing as a bit of a laugh, even after the villian almost kills her. Becomes more serious nearer the end of the book.

    Angela Romano. Pulse. Italian. Older than most of the group apart from Peacemaker being in her early twenties, formerly a teacher, now and working in politics. Intelligent, self-confident and serious she is on the team to keep an eye on them for the Grand Council, the thirteen most powerful mutants in the world. She can omit auric pulses which overload the aura of living things causing unconciousness, death or, in some extreme cases, explosion.

    Maria González. Haven’t decided on a alias. On the team because she believes that Adam will discover a cure to lycanthropy as his parents both did a lot of work in that area. Constantly worried about the future as she will eventually succumb to it. Vicious at times and sometimes loses control in battle to the lycantrope in her dna. A Werebeast. She can turn into animals. Preferred form is a fox. Loses control of her body during the full moon to a sinister alter ego. Will become permanant when she’s an adult.

  11. Cassandraon 09 Aug 2010 at 5:34 pm

    I like that Maria has a ticking clock (how old is she?) and I’d be interested to see how she battles the fear of knowing that she’ll one day lose complete control of her self. I really like your version of were-people.

    I really like the team and their personalities, but I am afraid as far as powers go, it can be a bit power-heavy, which will make defeating the bad guys way too easily. Maria, Adam, and Eric’s powers are good, but I’d suggest tweaking the other’s powers.

    Are there any consequences or weaknesses in her power. If not, what keeps her from constantly controlling all the villains (or even her teammates) minds?

    With Luke, perhaps it’d be best if he just removed powers for a certain amount of time–but not knock them out–so that the bad guy isn’t completely incapable, thus ending a battle before it started. (Or maybe not completely remove the power, but weaken its effects.) And again, what would make Luke cautious about using this power in a battle so that he couldn’t just swoop in, render the bad guy helpless, and thus quickly ending the battle?

    With Angela’s powers having some kind of weakness or consequence. Maybe when she does use them, she can’t control who is knocked out.

    Again, personality-wise, I think that these characters are great. They would be people I would like to read about. I’m just afraid that the bad guy would have to be REALLY powerful in order to defeat a *team* full of people with these kinds of abliities.

    Out of curiosity, do you know how this team bands together yet?

  12. Cassandraon 09 Aug 2010 at 5:39 pm

    As an aside to Rose, I actually have a character in the second book of my series who has a similar power. She can compel people through singing song lyrics. But they have to be actual lyrics to an actual song for it to work.

    However, I’m still afraid that she may be too powerful. In my first draft, she becomes a semi-villain and ends up dying soon after and it’s in her dying breath that she uses her powers to redeem herself. However, in the rewrite, I’m already planning on keeping her alive and making her overall character more sinister. Because of that, I’m probably going to ax her original power and give her something that’s easy to see the protagonist to physically fight against. (Mental battles are rarely interesting to read on paper.)

  13. NicKennyon 10 Aug 2010 at 6:49 am

    Cassandra

    I’m planning Maria to be either 16 or 17, along with Adam and Rose. Eric will be between 17-20 and Luke and Angela will be in their early twenties.

    Maria will battle her fear of turning by becoming tough and synical. She’ll be the most inclined towards physical violence.

    I misexplained (?) Rose’s powers. She won’t have the ability to control minds but instead to influence their emotions.

    Luke powers only work if he can touch the person he wishes to use his ability on. As I plan for most of the villians to have powers that can be used at range this will not be easy on him.

    I’m planning on Angela to have originally discovered her powers during an attempted mugging on her resulting in her killing the muggers. She’ll become wary of using her ability due to a fear that she won’t be able to control it, and only use it when there is no other option.

    The bad guy will be pretty powerful. He’s a necromancer as I’ve already mentioned and will have already absorbed several powers. And I’m planning him to have a few henchmen.

    I’m planning for Adam to first meet Maria after fleeing from the villian and crashlanding in her grand/father’s garden. Her grand/father will not be a werebeast but will instead have the ability to sense when a person with abilities is near. He’ll help Adam and tell him and Maria to head towards the coast and hitch a ride on a ferry heading towards Europe, then go to Venice. Adam unknowingly absorbs his power and he and Maria fly off. They find Rose performing at a concert when Adam senses two of the villians henchmen there when there path takes them near. Luke is working as her bodyguard, under orders from the Council. Eric and Angela are assigned to the group by the Council in order to even the odds a bit.

  14. NicKennyon 10 Aug 2010 at 7:26 am

    Actually, I should go into the characters meeting a bit more. Adam is shot when fleeing from the villian as the villian is hesitant to use his abilities as he isn’t sure what Adam’s ability is, fearing that it may counteract his in some way. Adam flies as far away as he can but ends up crashlanding in Maria’s grand/father’s garden. Her grand/father will not be a werebeast but will instead have the ability to sense when a person with abilities is near. He helps Adam and tell him and Maria to head towards the coast and hitch a ride on a ferry heading towards Europe, then go to Venice. Adam unknowingly absorbs his power and he and Maria fly off. They pass near a city when Adam senses some of the villians men, whom he had already met, entering a concert, Adam and Maria follow them and realise that they are attempting to kidnap Rose who is performing at the concert. They end up in a fight with the villians but manage to escape with Rose and Luke who is her bodyguard. They use her private jet to fly into Italy, and head to Milan wher Luke shows them the entrance into the Council’s base as he was protecting Rose under orders from the Council. Angela and Eric join the group for their own reasons. Angela, because she befriends the group during their stay in the Council’s Base, as she’s a junior member within the Council’s system and Eric joins them on behalf of the Council, although I’m planning for him to have some sort of revenge angle against the villian.

  15. NicKennyon 10 Aug 2010 at 3:57 pm

    I’m only on the first draft so far, although as I’ve already got the plot pretty much stuck in my head I don’t think it’ll need many rewrites.

  16. Cassandraon 11 Aug 2010 at 9:40 pm

    The balance of powers is a lot better now that you’ve explained them–and their reasons for using them (or not)–more clearly. I’m liking how they all manage to meet up although Adam crash-landing there is a bit convenient, but possibly more for Maria than him!

    How far along are you in your first draft? I’m on the first real rewrite on my book, but I’m changing a lot in my plot because I didn’t really have any direction when I first wrote it. I have a lot clearer picture of what I want the series to look like (although I’m still working on details . . .)

    As a completely random midnight musing: have you ever asked yourself, “What if I am an empath?” I mean, the only way to find out is to meet somebody else with a power. You could live your entire life with the power to absorb other persons’ powers but never meet said powerful person. It just seems like such a waste. =)

  17. NicKennyon 14 Aug 2010 at 12:33 am

    1.Perhaps I’ll have Adam crashlanding in the town where Maria lives during the night, but they find Adam due to her grand/fathers ability which allows them to home in on him quickly. They’ll be hiding from the werebeasts and may think that Adam is one… Will think on that.

    2.I’ve written most of the beginning of the story as well as the last three chapters. Am starting to get into the middle although the plot has some gaps in that area.

    3. LOL.

  18. NicKennyon 14 Aug 2010 at 9:26 am

    Right villians now.

    Christopher Shepherd: Main antagonist. Necromancer (the ability to absorb powers through killing people with superpowers). Wants to overthrow the Council, revenge for his dead father on Adam, although Adam’s parents died along with Chris’ in the battle. Going to make him mildy insane, having occasional bouts of rage and, importantly, stupidity. E.g. taunting the good guy when he’s down, giving him time to get up. Possibly give him a “worringly penetrative stare” and bouts of talking to himself.

    Fang & Shaaran Pack. Werebeasts. Fang is the pack leader. Arrogant, vicious but mainly evil he joins Shepherd in order to gain leadership of all the werewolves (Never been done before). The Sharaan Pack’s territory is northern Spain, maybe Andorra.

    Dread. Shadowmancer (umbrakinetic, controls shadows) Can turn shadows solid and sharp, can dissapear into a shadow and appear out of another etc. Working for Shepherd for unknown reasons. Dark and sarcastic.

    Lady Devine. Mind-controller. Works alongside Dread. Her mind control basically consists of her being able to plant a thought in someone’s mind or to influence their emotions. Capable of complete mind control although it takes a lot of time and effort, even more so for the strong-minded.

  19. NicKennyon 16 Aug 2010 at 12:31 am

    Oh, and:

    Hydra. Grace Fahey. Regeneration. Adam’s former girlfriend who get’s shot in the first few chapters and Adam believes that she’s dead. Shepherd and Lady D slowly poison her against Adam.

    Whad’you think? Too many?

  20. Cassandraon 16 Aug 2010 at 6:29 am

    I like the villains. They seem like formidable enemies. And I like the girlfriend angle. The only thing I worry about is how they all work together. Do they all come at them at once? One at a time?? The good thing about having a series is that you can introduce them gradually . . . all while knowing that there’s the ultimate big bad who’s in charge of them all. If you do introduce them all at once, I’d suggest holding off on introducing the girlfriend until a bit later . . . maybe they have a big victory and just as their celebrating it, he finds out his girlfriend is still alive. And then that she’s turned bad. But this depends on how the entire story is set up.

  21. Cassandraon 16 Aug 2010 at 6:33 am

    they’re* I hate when I accidentally write the wrong homonym.

  22. NicKennyon 16 Aug 2010 at 8:29 am

    They generally fight in one’s or two’s. LD and Dread won’t feature majorly in the novel. A couple of scenes here and there. I’m planning on intruducing Grace early enough in the book. Adam will be fleeing in a chase when a car/jeep will turn up, dorr’ll open, and she’ll yell at him to get in. Oh, and the villian is driving the car. Unfortunate. Eventually Adam will find out and escape, getting shot in the process. Leading up nicely to the part when he meets Maria (who definitely needs a alias, so does Adam too come to think about it….). Most of the real “villianing will be done by Shepherd and Fang.

  23. NicKennyon 17 Aug 2010 at 3:14 pm

    Reminder.

    Gonna put up a chapter tomorrow. Just gotta find my USB stick. Here Usby-usby-usby…

  24. NicKennyon 18 Aug 2010 at 6:01 am

    This is one of the last chapters in the novel. I appreciate that it needs a bit of work. Any thoughts or comments will be appreciated.

    They walked through the dark tunnel, Adam leading the way while holding a flame up in front of him to show the way. The group walked slowly, stepping over rubble and debris, finding their way through the winding tunnels. The crowd of people followed them in silence, with quite murmers breaking out occaisionally. The whole situation seemed earily comical to Adam, who whispered back to Eric behind him. “Guess we know how Moses felt, eh?” which was rewarded with chuckle until it was silenced by a dark look from Angela. Adam shook his head. “Just trying to lighten the mood.” he muttered. “You’d almost think World War III had just happened or something.”
    The tunnel slowly started to gradually become lighter and lighter as they went deeper into the ground until they eventually came out into a massive dome-shaped hall. Breathtaking sculptures of people and animals were carved into the walls and appeared to radiate a silvery glow, casting light throughout the room. Twelve tunnels opened into the hall at regular intervals, with the tunnels number above it in metallic roman numerals, lending the appearance that the hall was huge clock. The V was currently golden, as apposed to the rest of the numerals which had a silvery sheen to them. Crowds of people were streaming out of each tunnel, growing quiet upon entering the room and becoming aware of the beauty of the room. The silence that filled the room seemed almost tangible, smothering any thoughts of speaking out of the minds of those within.
    Rose suddenly spoke, interupting whatever trance the group had fallen under. “This is it then, right?” looking at Adam.
    Adam nodded slowly. “Yeah. This is it. We’re going home…” He slipped the ring off his finger and held it up. “ I just have to place this into the circle in the centre over there.” gesturing to the stone table in the centre of the room.
    “If only Luke was here to see this. He always did appreciate good art.”
    Angela sighed beside them. “Yeah.” she said. “Except he’d have told us to stop being so sentimental and go home. Sharp and to the point, that was Luke.”
    Adam nodded and started to walk towards the table, the crowd parting to let him through, the murmering growing around him as the group walked into the centre of the room. “Funny,” he said out loud. “I thought things only ended like this in the movies. I’d expected… actually, I don’t know what I expected really. Just not this…”
    Rose frowned. “What are you talking about? This seems normal enough to me.”
    Adam sighed. “Rose. You. Are. A. International. Popstar. You’ve been a celebrity since the age of twelve. Normal doesn’t really apply to you in this situation.”
    Rose almost got an indignant when Eric suddenly interupted. “What’s in the bag Rose?” he asked, nodding towards the bag that Rose had been carrying around with her all day.
    She paused. “It’s… eh… clothes. Yeah… clothes. Clothes.”
    “Right Adam, caugh up!” Eric yelled triumphantly.
    Adam sighed. “Eric. What part of ‘I couldn’t give a crap what’s in her bag. I don’t care. Piss off.’ did you not get?”
    “You were making bets on what Rose had in her bag? Why?” Angela asked incrediously.
    Suddenly Eric seemed slightly more self aware than he probably ever had been in his life and something inside was screaming. “SHUT UP!” Unfortunately this message arrived several seconds too late and he blurted out. “Well, you know, make it interesting. Have something too… too…” he stopped for a second and put his head in his hands. “You all think I’m an asshole now don’t you.”
    “Yeah.”
    “Definitly.”
    “Always have.”
    Eric visibly sagged but walked along with the group regardless. The last of the crowd parted before them and they walked up to the table. In the middle of the table was a small indentation, about the same size as the ring. Written around the rim of the table were the words: In hollow hither place thy ring, turn sunwise upon the confirmed time and hollow hither homewards bring. “Well it’s written as though we’re in the 1300’s.” Angela muttered, always the school teacher. “Sunwise is clockwise I think…. no, I know it is. I think. But what’s the ‘confirmed time’?”
    Adam held the ring up to the light and for a fraction of a second, a previously unnoticed etching lit up on the ring. VII. Seven. “Looks like we’re going to have to wait a few minutes.”
    “Good.” Rose said. “Because I’ve got something that I want to say.”
    “What?”
    “Well…” she began, and then hesitated. “Over the last few days I… I’ve felt alive. This is real, you know? Working as a team, taking down the bad guys, experiencing what most people can only dream about…”
    She paused, suddenly self-concious and continued wretchedly. “I just don’t think that I can go back to normal after this.”
    Adam sighed. “Once again Rose, normal does not apply to you.”
    She frowned at him. “Come on Adam,” she said. “You must know what I’m talking about. You all must. We could make the world a better place. Do any of you really think that you could just go back to the life that you had before? Pretending that your abilities don’t exist? I know I can’t.”
    “Take the clothes out of the bag Rose.”
    “What! Why?” she asked, thrown by the conversation’s rapid change in direction.
    “You went missing for a few hours yesterday and so did Leonardo. You don’t have to be as smart as he is to out that something was going on and now, suddenly, you have a bag with you. Come on, show us. I know you’re dying to.”
    Rose shyly pulled several… objects out of the bag. They certainly appeared to be clothes, although Adam couldn’t imagine who would wear them. Possibly a figure skater or maybe a circus performer. Or Rose at one of her concerts. The person wearing them would have to not mind… spandex, glitter and looking like a complete tool. Adam picked up one of the suits. Oh, God. he thought. “You’re going to look great in this Eric.” he said as Eric started to choke on his own mortification.
    “Don’t be stupid Adam.” Rose muttered. “That’s mine. This one’s Eric’s.”
    She pulled out a slightly less garish looking suit. It was black with electric blue design on the arms and legs, with gold lightning bolts on the upper arms. Adam had to hand it to her, at least it looked as though the wearer might be male.
    Adam looked on as Rose handed out out the suits and answered the questions fielded to her. The suits were quite ingenius, Adam had to grudgingly admit. They had the same glove design that had been used in their armour which allowed Eric and Angela to use their abilities without, quite importantly, losing a hand. The suits had been… galvinised, which according to Angela was the correct term for “having been dunked it liquid metal.” Leonardo had apparently come up with his own way of doing this with Omeganthium which made the clothes able to theoretically stop bullets, at least as long range. Adam had his own opinions about this and what life experience he had told him that theoretically was no where near as good as actually. Still, Leonardo had made it and Da Vinci had more credibility than Japan when stamped on the bottom of on object.
    “What’s this on the front Rose?” Angela asked, pointing to the symbol which dominated the front of the suit. Adam had actually noticed it several minutes ago but the twin obstacles of disaproval and annoyance had prevented him from asking about it. The symbol intruiged Adam, it consisted of the greek letter Omega with a full-spread wing on either side. In the very centre was a small shield.
    Rose smiled, clearly pleased that someone had finally noticed it. “It’s our, y’know, symbol. The shield shows that we protect, the Omega means that’ll we’ll protect them to the end and the wings mean that we’re, like, guardian angels. And Adam’s got wings, of course.”
    “Oh. I don’t suppose you’ve decided on what we’re going to call ourselves as well, have you?”
    “Of course! We’re the Organisation of Mutants and Empowered for Global Action!” Rose said triumphantly, before noticing the blank looks that everyone else were currently giving her.
    “O-M-E-G-A. Omega? Ties in nicely with the logo.” she sagged spectacularly. “Leonardo came up with it.”
    Adam cleared his throat, breaking the silence and paused as every pair of eyes turned to him. He stood there, feeling their collective gaze burning into him, but took his time before meeting it. He looked up slowly, shaking his head. “What, so this is the bit where we decide to team up and become superheroes? Have people writing comic books about us?” He paused, aware that he was not taking his audience with him. “No.” he said firmly. “I just want my normal life back. I understand what you mean but all I’ve ever wanted is to be normal. I did this because they killed my family, and because they were trying to kill me. This was what I needed to do to get my life on track. I just did what I had to do to survive. I know it may sound selfish, but it’s all I ever planned on doing. I can’t go and be a… superhero? I’m no hero…”
    An awkward silence grew over the group. Eventually Eric ventured. “Adam… you’re sure about this?”
    “Yes.”
    “Then that’s your decision. Although I think I speak for all of us when I say that you’ll always be our leader. We’d be nothing without you and most of us would probably be dead. And though you mightn’t think it, you are a hero. Look around you, look back on what you’ve done. There’s not a person here who doesn’t think that you’re a hero, and one day, you’ll realize that.”
    Another awkward silence fell upon them.
    “D’you think they’re here watching us?” asked Miranda suddenly.
    “Who?”
    “You know who. Them.”
    Adam nodded, he knew. “Maybe, it doesn’t matter. We wouldn’t be able to find them. A shadowmancer, a mind controller and a group of people who can turn into insects? If they don’t wish to be seen, we won’t see them. That’s just the way it is.”
    “What about Maria?”
    “Maria’s probably miles away from here. It won’t matter anyway. She’ll still come back with us. The only way the portal wouldn’t take her back with us is if she’s buried under a pile of earth.” he said aloud and thought privately to himself. Hopefully. Out of the corner of his eye he noticed the VII turn golden. He placed the ring into the hollow and looked at his friends.
    He paused and then smiled grimly. “Let’s go home.” he said, and twisted the ring clockwise.

  25. B. Macon 18 Aug 2010 at 8:43 am

    I’d recommend starting with the earlier chapters and working your way up to the end. It’s very hard for me to tell whether a later chapter actually works without reading it like a reader would (i.e. after all of the preceding chapters). So, with that limitation in mind, here are some thoughts and suggestions:

    –There are some spelling mistakes and word choice issues. For example, “quite murmers breaking out occaisionally” should be “quiet murmurs breaking out occasionally.” Earily –> eerily

    It’s hard for me to tell what’s going on, although I don’t know how much of a problem this would be if I had the earlier chapters in front of me. For example, what’s this tunnel they’re in? Who are the people following them? What year is this taking place in?

    I’d recommend showing more and telling less. For example, “the situation seemed eerily comical” could be built up with a funny conversation or at least with some details that show how eerie the scene is.

    “This is it then, right?” I don’t know what “it” is.

    “If only Luke was here to see this. He always did appreciate good art.” I don’t know who Luke was or why he’s not here.

    “Except he’d have told us to stop being so sentimental and go home. Sharp and to the point, that was Luke.” This first sentence is effective because it implies something about Luke’s personality–showing is usually better than telling. The second sentence (“sharp and to the point, that was Luke”) explicitly tell us the same thing, which is less effective.

    “What are you talking about? This seems normal enough to me.”
    “Rose. You. Are. A. International. Popstar. You’ve been a celebrity since the age of twelve. Normal doesn’t really apply to you in this situation.” I don’t know what her celebrity has to do with this situation. I thought they were like spelunking in the sewers or something.

    It feels like there are too many characters in the scene. In addition to Adam, Angela, Eric, Rose and Miranda, there are also references to several other characters (such as Luke, Maria, and possibly Da Vinci depending on his role in the story). This MAY work when we know all the characters, but right now I feel like it’s really hard to keep track of everybody.

    I think it may help to differentiate the characters’ voices and personalities a bit more.

    “Sunwise is clockwise, I think… No, I know it is. I think.” Haha, I like that.

    I’d like more scenery besides visual details.

    This doesn’t feel like natural dialogue: “Then that’s your decision. Although I think I speak for all of us when I say that you’ll always be our leader. We’d be nothing without you and most of us would probably be dead. And though you mightn’t think it, you are a hero. Look around you, look back on what you’ve done. There’s not a person here who doesn’t think that you’re a hero, and one day, you’ll realize that.” It might help to cut it down to 1-2 sentences and cut down the hyperbole a bit.

    Would you like to start with chapter 1?

  26. NicKennyon 18 Aug 2010 at 9:08 am

    Thanks B.Mac! I get where your coming from. I used this chapter because it’s the only one that Im anyway satisfied with. Most of them on on the first draft and some are rather skeletal. I used this chapter just to see if anyone would have anything negative to say about content or style but from what you’ve said that doesn’t seem to be a major problem. I agree with your comments about the content, particularly the natural dialogue comment. I actually meant to change it but forgot to. I’ll try to put the first chapter up soon.

    Thanks.

  27. NicKennyon 19 Aug 2010 at 11:32 am

    Does anyone have any suggestions for an alias for Adam. His character summary is above somewhere. I’d like it to have something to do with angels as that’s what first pops into your head when you see a person with wings.

  28. B. Macon 19 Aug 2010 at 1:31 pm

    Savior, seraph, seraphim, a variation of celestial (or Celestial [Unexpected Noun]), maybe Cherub if he’s young, Shepherd, Glory (or Glorious [Unexpected Noun]), etc.

    I don’t think any of these are good as Dark Cloud Descending’s “Clarion,” though.

  29. NicKennyon 19 Aug 2010 at 4:37 pm

    Thanks Bmac but I don’t think any of them really suit the character. I’ve been, thinking about giving him black wings, giving him a slightly darker side to his personalty. Thinking of names like Azrael, the Angel of Death, Night’s Angel, The Dark Angel, Death’s Angel, etc.

  30. Ghoston 19 Aug 2010 at 5:29 pm

    NicKenny,
    What about the name Nephilim, its the name for the offspring on angels and humans. Or if he has black wings you could call him raven.

  31. Cassandraon 19 Aug 2010 at 9:33 pm

    If you’d like, you can send me an email and I’ll send you your chapter. (cassandrarose526 (at) hotmail (dot) com) I edited it a bit, although with some of the spelling, I wasn’t sure because you may use British-English spelling.

    Overall, you did a really great job in showing the characters personalities, despite the fact that I don’t know them all that well. Rose, especially, came out well. I enjoyed the exchanged centered around her, the most. First, the line about her being a popstar. Second, her mini-speech when the costumes are first revealed after Adam tells her once again that she’s not normal. If I had to guess, she is the “heart” of the team.

    I did notice, however, that you use a lot of unnecessary words when you write dialogue. I’d suggest tightening their conversations and taking out any “filler” words. (such as “like” “y’know” or “yeah” Sometimes they’re necessarily, but use them sparingly because they slow down the conversation and make the reader stumble.) I know this is a big problem I have when writing. I go through my conversations three or four times and still find things that can be cut out.

    Some of your sentences can be redundant (such as “said out loud” or “whispered back to Eric behind him.”) but that is also easily fixed. One thing I would work on is trying to make more action-oriented sentences, you venture a lot into passive voice, which works well sometimes, but I noticed a lot of phrases that would be more effective if you turned them around.

    I also really liked a lot of the descriptors that you wrote, but I wish that you would write a bit more about them–include some of the other senses to help the reader really dive into the scene. I’m also curious about the crowds of people following them. I’m sure that they’re explained in a previous chapter, but just jumping into the story, I want to know who they are, why they’re following them, whether there are any outspoken ones, etc.

    I’d be really interested in reading the first chapter of this. If this chapter is any indicator, I think that you are writing a real gem. These are characters I’d really like to get to know more.

  32. Cassandraon 19 Aug 2010 at 9:51 pm

    Dark Angel . . . I used to be obsessed with that show.

    This site seems really kooky, but it has a list of all the so-called named angels. You may find something that catches your eye there.

    http://www.angeldrawings.com/angelDictionary/index.html

    A play off of “Fallen Angel” may be kind of cool too. Hmm . . . another link. What did people do before Google?

    http://www.angelsghosts.com/fallen_angel_names.html

  33. NicKennyon 20 Aug 2010 at 8:28 am

    Ghost thanks for the comment. Nephilim might work…

    Cassandra, I’ve sent you an email just there. Thanks for the advice.

    I have not written Chapter One yet because I’m worried about how I’ll do it. I want to get it perfect. I do however, have chapter Two. WARNING LOOOOOOOOONG.

    I’ll first put up a summary of the intro and chap 1.
    Intro: A group of ex-IRA hitmen are hired to kill Adam Lawless by a man in his late teens. It’s briefly mentioned that the hitmen did work for the young man’s father. The hitmen are a bit hesitant to accept the contract as they don’t trust him but he threatens them (using superpowers) into accepting the contract.

    Chapter 1. Adam Lawless is introduced, along with Sidney, his protector and talking dog. His parents went missing years before and Sidney assumed the role of Adam’s guardian, his ability with mimicry managing to keep Adam clear of social services. Adam meets his girlfiend, Grace Fahey, for her birthday in Dublin. A car drives by and it’s passengers fire at them. Adam ducks in time, but Grace is hit, killing her. Adam runs into the alley’s, hitmen in tow, and surprises them, using his ability to fly. He beats them up pretty badly, trying to find out who sent them. They didn’t know his name however so Adam leaves them and goes on the run with Sidney, trying to hide from whoever is trying to kill him.

    Chapter Two.

    Three Years Later

    Adam squinted painfully as a new day dawned over New York City. Even now, at half-past six in the morning, people were walking the city’s many streets, living up to the cities’ title “The City that Never Sleeps.” Cars were already jamming the roads due to the early morning rush-hour as people tried to go to work for the early shifts, in a vain attempt to beat the traffic or merely trying to get home at the end of their late-night jobs.
    Adam had that feeling that he had grown used to over the past few years. It wasn’t unlike the sensation that you get when people are staring at you, the shivering feeling that runs down your spine. In this case, however, Adam was noticing the lack of attention he was receiving, as people’s eyes deleted him from the scene, their sub-consciousness’ removing them from the world itself, eliminating anything that might upset them. For the past four years Adam had been invisible, unnoticed by all but a handful.
    Of course, this was exactly what he wanted. Ever since Grace had been shot Adam had been living on the run, moving from city to city, trying his not to be found. He was pretty sure that no one could find him. He had been living completely off the grid for the past three years, moving from city to city throughout Europe whenever he felt like it. It had been hard, at first, living on the streets, begging for money, sleeping rough every night, alone except for thoughts and…
    A loud yawn came from his backpack. Sidney poked his head up briefly and then, with a loud, disappointed grunt, flopped back down into the depths of the bag. “Another day, another shithole.” he muttered.
    … And Sidney, the talking, walking and incredibly annoying metal dog who had been Adam unofficial guardian and best friend ever since Adam’s parents went missing. Sadly, the last three years had not managed to change Sidney’s motto, which essentially went: There’s something mildly interesting, why don’t I keep talking about it until everyone around me sorely wishes to do me serious bodily harm.
    “Come on Sidney,” Adam said, sighing as theatrically as possible. “You know why we’re doing this. We’ve had this exact argument every single day for the past three years, two months and six days. I’d say that it’s getting old but it’s been going on for so long that it’s a corpse of an argument.”
    The backpack was silent but, inevitably, he then spoke up. “You’ve counted the days? All of them? Seriously? Adam? Adam? Adam!”
    “Yes Sidney, I have.”
    Sidney was quiet for a while. “That’s really pathetic, you know that right? Adam? Hello? Adam!”
    Adam sighed again. “Yes I do Sidney. Trust me. I do. I really do. Now could you shut up, please? That old couple over there by that clothes shop are staring at me.”
    “It’s okay Adam. They think it’s just the demons in your head. It’s hardly uncommon in this city.” Sidney remarked cheerfully.
    Adam looked across the road at a scruffy looking man who was screaming incomprehensibly at passing cars. “Yeah.” Adam muttered, suddenly feeling increasingly uneasy without knowing why. He looked back at the clothes shop but the old couple weren’t there anymore. “Sidney?” Adam began slowly. “Why were they looking at us when there’s a really crazy guy down the street?”
    Sidney poked his head up through the opening in the bag again, his small face suddenly worried. “I don’t know.” he said seriously. “You look kind of weird.”
    “Come on Sidney. Be serious.”
    “You don’t think they know, do you?”
    “I don’t know. I don’t see how they could, can you?”A few seconds passed. “We should probably move.”
    Sidney groaned loudly. “Come on Adam. We’ve only been here for three days. The last place we were in was Houston. Houston Texas. They couldn’t have recognised us. They can’t know about you.” he whined. “So stop being so paranoid and calm down. What’s the point in spending a couple of days finding somewhere new to stay, travelling to it, getting your bearings all over again? You know I hate flying. Come on, we’ll be fine.”
    “Well…” Adam began before Sidney interrupted him.
    “There’s no well about it Adam. They can’t possibly have known what we are. Stop getting your damn knickers in a twist!”
    Adam was silent for a few minutes while he wondered what he was going to do. Sidney continued to fidget impatiently. Just when Sidney was about to explode Adam sighed and nodded slowly.
    “All right,” he said. “We’ll stay in New York. But we’re moving to the other side of the city.”
    Sidney nodded enthuisiaticly. “Great! There’ll be nothing to worry about! You’ll see!” he said, and then paused as his brain finally decoded an important bit of information.
    “What?! The Bronx?!” he yelled hysterically, forgetting that he was supposed to be quiet. “No way Adam! People get killed over there! There’s all those drug dealers and gangs and crap like that!”
    “Sidney, you’re a metallic, magical, talking dog. How will any of that affect you in any way?”
    “Maybe it’s you I’m worried about!” Sidney replied testily. “Did you think of that Adam? You can be stabbed or shot or… or… or whatever!”
    Adam was surprised by this uncharacteristic display of affection, although, Adam had to concede, in most cases this wouldn’t be considered that affectionate. He was not surprised, however, when Sidney then added. “And then where would I be? What would I do?”
    “There’s crime everywhere, in every city. We’ve never had much trouble before.”
    “What about that time in Chicago four months ago? That guy tried to stab you.”
    “And?”
    “And you broke his arm and stole his knife.” Sidney grudgingly concluded. “But he was off his head on drugs at the time. Well… what about that guy two years ago in Munich. He almost knocked you out!”
    “Onliy then I knocked him out.”
    “But you kneed him below the belt, punched him in the stomach and kneed him in the face!”
    “Your point being?”
    “It wasn’t… fair.” Sidney muttered, realising that this wasn’t much of a response.
    “You don’t get points for fighting fair. You’ve always said that.”
    A few seconds passed.
    “You can be a real asshole sometimes.”
    A shrill scream suddenly broke through the din of the city. Adam glanced up to see a man running away from a crowd of people with a rather expensive looking handbag in his hand as though all the demons in hell were on his tail, instead of the rather fat policeman that was chasing him, who, despite having a distinctly red face, was about as demonic as a digestive biscuit. The man was dressed in a dark hoody and tracksuit bottoms, with white runners completing the look. He was visibly pulling away from the policeman, who was clearly a traditional donut-and-coffee cop. What happened next baffled those watching. The policeman started slowing down, gasping for breath and clutching his chest. The thief looked to be in the clear when a leg suddenly shot out from one of the shop doorways and took his legs from underneath him. The thief flipped over, landing face-first on the ground with the handbag flying out of his grasp.
    The policeman finally caught up and slapped a pair of handcuffs onto the thief. The woman whose handbag had been stolen ran up, panting and red in the face. “Thank you Officer!” she trilled, completing the 6o’s cop show feel, snatching her handbag off the ground. The policeman, slightly bemused by what had happened, nodded to her and continued to stare at the doorway where the thief had been tripped. It was empty. “Your welcome.” he muttered absentmindedly, fending off the crowd of people applauding him. He wrenched the thief up onto his feet and dragged him over to the doorway to get a better look. To his disbelief it continued to be empty. He blinked several times, confident that this would somehow alter what he was seeing, then walked up to the store’s door and pulled the handle. Locked. He then walked down the alley beside the store, thief in tow, which finished at a dead-end a few meters away. The only thing in the alley was a huge green dumpster. He peered into up and then withdrew his head almost immediately. No, no one could have hidden in that. He shook his head in disbelief “Eyes must be playing up.” he said to the sullen handbag-snatcher, who snorted.
    The policeman shrugged. “Oh well… Oh right. You have the right to remain silent…”

    * * * * *

    Sidney stuck his head out of the dumpster as the squad-car drove away, it’s siren fading into the wind. “You didn’t have to do that, you know.”
    Adam hopped down off the bulidings roof. “Do what?” he asked casually.
    “Stop the thief by kicking his legs from under him, then running really, really quickly around the corner while everyone was watching Mr. Criminal fall onto his face, tossing me into this dumpster and then flying up onto the buildings roof and lying down flat so no one would see you.”
    “How did you know I lay flat down of the roof?”
    “I smelt it.”
    “Seriously?”
    “God no! How the hell could I do that? Come on Adam, use some common sense here!”
    Adam sighed. “Sidney.”
    “Yup.”
    “Why haven’t I dumped you somewhere?”
    “I don’t know Adam. Maybe it’s my winning personality.” said Sidney, his voice severly muffled. Horribly visual noises came from his immediate area.
    “Sidney?” Adam began carefully.
    “Mmmm?”
    “You’re not actually eating stuff in that dumpster are you? You are aren’t you? Oh God Sidney. It smells like something died in there.”
    “Yeah, that’s what I’m eating!”
    At that moment Adam’s whole imagination shut down. After a few reboot attempts he finally managed to say, in a cold voice. “I’m going now. If you want to come with me you’d better get out of that dumpster right now.”
    The chewing noise stopped. “Oh, all right then.” Sidney muttered sulkily, and stuck his head out of the dumpster. “Only can you lift me out. I am only a little dog.”
    Taking a deep breath, Adam reluctantly lifted Sidney out of the dumpster, taking extreme care not to breathe. He put carefully Sidney on the ground and, with a tremendous amount of self control and style, ran over to the end of the of the alley and proceded to be sick. After a few minutes he managed to regain control of himself, without much help from Sidney, who decided to supply a running commentary. “Ooooh, and there goes that banana that you had earlier on.” etc.
    “How… could you… stand… the smell?” Adam gasped, almost throwing up again, but managing to keep whatever he had left in his stomach down.
    “It wasn’t that bad.” said Sidney, in spite of all evidence to the contrary.
    “You’re kidding me? Right?” Adam asked but gave up in the face of Sidney’s… face. Dog’s have great poker faces. That’s why they were in that painting, instead of cows or chickens.
    “Alright then, be that way.”
    Adam picked up Sidney and put him into the bag, to the dog’s obvious dissapointment.
    “Ah, come on. Can’t I walk?”
    “No.” replied Adam sharply. “You’re made of metal. People will notice. And why am I explaining this to you. You know this already. Now shut up!”
    Of course, he didn’t. That wasn’t his style. Even after Adam had zipped up the bag Sidney continued to grumble, which was thankfully muffled by the materiel, ensuring that few enough people noticed Adam passing by. They probably wouldn’t have anyway. No one noticed the homeless, the poor, the unfortunate people who lived on the streets of every city in the world. People were good at not noticing what they didn’t wish to see.

  34. NicKennyon 21 Aug 2010 at 11:48 am

    Reminder…

  35. B. Macon 21 Aug 2010 at 1:29 pm

    –Thanks for the reminder.

    –Chapter 1: If Grace dies right away, she probably doesn’t need a last name. 😉

    –Chapter 1: The talking dog. Is this a Sabrina-like situation where the dog hides his ability to speak from outsiders, or is this a Family Guy situation where the dog talks and nobody thinks it’s unusual?

    Chapter 2…
    –The first paragraph could be more interesting. I think it could be shortened to “Even at 6:30 a.m., New York’s roads were clogged with rush-hour traffic.” I’d prefer something that focused more on Adam, though. New York and New York traffic are not the most interesting things going on here.

    –“… had been invisible, unnoticed by all but a handful.” I’d recommend shortening this to “all but invisible” or “practically invisible.”
    –“For the past four years…” Three, right? (The chapter starts with “three years later”).
    –“Of course, this was exactly what he wanted. Ever since Grace had been shot Adam had been living on the run, moving from city to city, trying his not to be found. He was pretty sure that no one could find him. He had been living completely off the grid for the past three years, moving from city to city throughout Europe whenever he felt like it.” This feels like too much exposition. I’d like to see this living-off-the-grid in action. How is he getting enough money/food to survive?

    –“And Sidney, the talking, walking and incredibly annoying metal dog who had been Adam unofficial guardian and best friend ever since Adam’s parents went missing.” Could you show this? (Also, I think “Adam” should be “Adam’s” here).

    –“And Sidney, the talking, walking and incredibly annoying metal dog who had been Adam unofficial guardian and best friend ever since Adam’s parents went missing. Sadly, the last three years had not managed to change Sidney’s motto, which essentially went: There’s something mildly interesting, why don’t I keep talking about it until everyone around me sorely wishes to do me serious bodily harm.” “And Sidney, a curiously outspoken metal hound whose apparent purpose in non-life was to remind everybody else how glad they should be their dogs can’t talk.” And then maybe supplement that with a sentence establishing his guardian-like relationship with Adam.

    “You know why we’re doing this. We’ve had this exact argument every single day for the past three years, two months and six days. I’d say that it’s getting old but it’s been going on for so long that it’s a corpse of an argument.” This sounds like an “as you know, Bob.” I think there are smoother ways to show they’ve had this argument before.

    –If you were inclined to, I think you could play up the comedic angle of a boy apparently talking to his backpack. The sad thing is that I don’t think it would stand out all that much on a NYC street.

    –Comma usage issues with some names. For example, “Yes Sidney, I have” should be “Yes, Sidney, I have.”
    –Enthusiasticly should be “enthusiastically”
    –I would recommend reducing the amount of exclamation marks, especially after Sidney’s lines. (“Great! There’ll be nothing to worry about! You’ll see! What?! The Bronx?! No way, Adam! People get killed over there! There’s all those drug dealers and gangs and crap like that! Maybe it’s you I’m worried about!)

    — “But he was off his head on drugs at the time.” I like this phrase.

    –I’d recommend trying to keep the characterization more consistent. If the dog is the sort of character who would always say something like “you don’t get points for fighting fair,” I’d recommend against him complaining that it wasn’t fair to knee the guy in the face. It might make more sense if the dog complains that they’re attracting too much attention. (Being involved in at least three brawls in several years is a bit much, isn’t it?)

    “was about as demonic as a digestive biscuit.” Haha.

    During the cop scene, it’s not really clear whose perspective we’re seeing the scene from. “The policeman, slightly bemused by what had happened, nodded to her and continued to stare at the doorway where the thief had been tripped. It was empty.” I would recommend staying with Adam’s perspective rather than shifting to the cop for ~50 words.

    ““Stop the thief by kicking his legs from under him, then running really, really quickly around the corner while everyone was watching Mr. Criminal fall onto his face, tossing me into this dumpster and then flying up onto the buildings roof and lying down flat so no one would see you.” This could be shortened.

    “I don’t know Adam. Maybe it’s my winning personality.” I think this is hilarious, but it might be smoother as “My winning personality.” Or “My winning personality?”

    “Adam asked but gave up in the face of Sidney’s… face. Dog’s have great poker faces. That’s why they were in that painting, instead of cows or chickens.” Haha! I love that.

    “You’re made of metal. People will notice. And why am I explaining this to you. You know this already. Now shut up!” I’d recommend against having him explain something they already know.

    I liked the final line.

  36. NicKennyon 21 Aug 2010 at 4:05 pm

    Thanks B.Mac.

    Grace didn’t die. Adam later finds out that she survived due to her regenerative ability. Although now she’s a villian. Awkward.

    Thanks for pointing out the spelling mistakes. The Microsoft Word on my laptop was only a trial version so I downloaded Open Office which, sadly, does not have a functioning spellcheck.

    Yeah the chapter takes place three years after, not four. Thanks for pointing that out.

  37. NicKennyon 24 Aug 2010 at 10:15 am

    I need alias’s for two other characters and can’t think of any that I like.

    Luke Robinson. Australian. The backbone of the group. Originally working as Siren’s bodyguard, he keeps the team together and becomes Angel’s right-hand man and his best friend. Tough, unstoppable but believing in using the smallest amount of force neccesary to get the job done. Has the ability to remove powers and to knock out someone by touch. Was originally going to call him Peacemaker but I think that’s taken.

    Maria González. American of Latin American descent. On the team because she believes that Adam will discover a cure to lycanthropy as his parents both did a lot of work in that area. Constantly worried about the future as she will eventually succumb to it. Vicious at times and sometimes loses control in battle to the lycantrope in her dna. A Werebeast. She can turn into animals. Loses control of her body during the full moon to a sinister alter ego. Will become permanant when she’s an adult.

  38. Ghoston 24 Aug 2010 at 1:17 pm

    Nickenny,
    For you Luke you could use the name Paladin. If I remember correctly your story is about a descendent of king Arthur( so if I have you mixed up with some one else. I am one my phone and was to lazy to read all of your previous posts. It takes forever on a 2 by 3 screen) and not only does Paladin mean knightly guardian, but the original Paladins were like the twelve greatest knights in Charlemagne’s court (kinda like his knights of the round table). So maybe you could use that as Luke’s back story or something.
    I don’t have a name for Maria, but I was kind of confused about her back story. I got that she changes into an animal, but is it a wolf or just some random beast. I ask because lycanthropy means changing into a wolf. However,

  39. Ghoston 24 Aug 2010 at 1:23 pm

    Sorry wrong button. However, Therianthropy is the general word that mean humans who change into animals. So like I said I was just wondering what you meant.

  40. NicKennyon 24 Aug 2010 at 3:46 pm

    Paladin might work…

    Maria is a werebeast. It’s similar to werewolfs. She can transform into any animal. During the full moon she loses control to an animalistic alter-ego. When she becomes an adult she will lose total control for good. As do all were-beasts. Just using lycanthropy ‘cos I thought people would be familar with the concept.

  41. Ghoston 25 Aug 2010 at 6:38 pm

    So is the transformation random, like wolf one thing and mountian lion next, or does she transform into a Chimera type beast.

  42. NicKennyon 26 Aug 2010 at 4:58 am

    She can transform into any animal at will, squirrel, wolf, cow, polar bear, giant panda etc. During the full moon, she’ll turn into the same animal each time. I haven’t decided which one yet but it’ll be much larger than normal eg. a fox the size of a bear.

  43. Ghoston 26 Aug 2010 at 8:43 am

    Okay, well that sounds like an interesting ability. Makes me think of a cross between kid Goku from the original dragon ball and beast boy from the teen titans. If she turns all giant and destructive during the full moon maybe you could call she rampage.

  44. Anonymouson 26 Aug 2010 at 10:20 am

    Actually Ghost. That’s pretty good. Thanks!

  45. NicKennyon 26 Aug 2010 at 10:21 am

    Sorry, the last one was me.

  46. Ghoston 26 Aug 2010 at 11:05 am

    No problem. I am more than glad to help.

  47. NicKennyon 01 Sep 2010 at 12:53 pm

    Suffering severe writer’s block. *Sigh*

    Off topic for what I’m currently working on but what would happen if the world’s governments discovered the existence of about 1 & 1/2 million superpowered people? Just looking for opinions here.

  48. B. Macon 01 Sep 2010 at 2:07 pm

    Probably freak out, especially China. I think even a democracy would be wary of a group able to coordinate a conspiracy (i.e. hiding their existence) that large.

    I think it depends on the powers, though. The vast majority of Marvel’s mutants have powers that are more or less only useful for violent purposes. If the powers were a bit less epically threatening and more useful in peaceful, friendly situations, I think people would take them more positively.

    Also, how did the humans find out about the superpowered people? If they found out after a major spate of violence (especially an attack on a military base or police station or other conventional symbol of power), I think the reaction would be stronger.

  49. NicKennyon 01 Sep 2010 at 2:21 pm

    I’m planning a sequel to the book that I’m writing in which the were-beasts (somewhere above) unite and attempt to wipe out the metahumans government. The government are going to be in no state to continue to hide their existence, especially when the werebeasts are openly shape shifting. It’s something people tend to notice.

    I feel that at least, the world’s governments would keep a tab on those with superpowers.

  50. Ghoston 01 Sep 2010 at 2:54 pm

    NicKenny,
    I suggest looking into the Masonic conspiracy in Italy to get an idea of the S!%$ storm secret groups can have.

  51. B. Macon 01 Sep 2010 at 4:54 pm

    Fear of the Freemasons led to the creatively named Anti-Masonic Party in the United States. Apparently we didn’t have better things to worry about in the early 1800s.

  52. NicKennyon 06 Sep 2010 at 1:29 pm

    I’m thinking along the lines of transformers. The CIA, NSA, Mossad etc will have some idea that metahumans exist, as it would be impossible to completely pull the wool over their eyes. They will, more than likely, have a plan of action to deal with them that they’ll recommend to their various governments. This, at the very least, will involve making them register so they can keep track on the numbers. Companies will try to sign people with powers that could be considerably useful eg. electricity generators for power companies, superfast people for… the post office? and, obviously, the military. Some countries may even want to remove those powers. I’m going to have to give it a bit of thought.

  53. Ghoston 06 Sep 2010 at 3:09 pm

    NicKenny,
    Surprisingly, much of the intel gather by all of America’s alphabet agencies is gathered through random sources like the Internet forums, new reports, and individual people. Then intel analysts take all of those random pieces of intel and try to put them together to make one big picture. So it is not unheard of from major things like pearl harbor and 9/11 to go unnoticed because none of the pieces look like they go together. So unless one of your super humans walked to to the military or something, then most likely they would go unnoticed. Any sightings or stories to them would like go into the same pile as the UFO report. However, if it works better for your story then have he government secretly recruit them.

  54. NicKennyon 08 Sep 2010 at 12:53 pm

    Thanks Ghost for the input. However, I’m planning on having about 1 – 1.5 million metahumans so there should be enough sightings on a population that large for it to have picked up a certain amont of interest. And anyway, if I was in charge of a government or secret service I’d have a plan of action for every eventuality. It’s just common sense. Although, no one did seem to have a plan for what to do if the world should enter a global recession.

  55. B. Macon 08 Sep 2010 at 1:19 pm

    “So unless one of your super humans walked to to the military or something, then most likely they would go unnoticed. Any sightings or stories to them would like go into the same pile as the UFO report.” I agree that it’s hard for government agencies to think outside the box in terms of identifying a threat they haven’t seen before.

    However, I think it’d be plausible for a police agency (either a metropolitan department or maybe someone national like the FBI) to get a pretty good idea that they’re dealing with a superpowered criminal before the public knows. If there’s a hitman whose modus operandi involves turning people into iceballs or a bank robber who teleports into the vault, they might eventually get lucky with a security camera or a witness. Or at least a pretty strong impression that this guy isn’t like other bank robbers (“That’s the twelfth bank vault this month without any signs of forced entry. These couldn’t all be inside jobs”).

  56. ShardReaperon 08 Sep 2010 at 5:39 pm

    If you’re looking for a plan of action, they could always veil some of the more flashier powers like flight and invisibility as prototype technology. At least then it’d seem plausible. It might also help if they gathered the metahumans together in a “super-city”; a place where they can use their powers without persecution.

  57. B. Macon 08 Sep 2010 at 7:08 pm

    I like the idea of a super-city. I am using a similar concept in my story. The New York police have more or less written off a chunk of the city to supercrime, so that they can better defend the rest*. That area is colloquially known as Capetown, as in “you’d need a cape to survive there.”

    *(My protagonists are mostly federal agents, so this is my way of explaining why there never seem to be any cops around when they need help).

  58. ShardReaperon 09 Sep 2010 at 10:03 am

    I don’t think the town name needs to be so blunt. Maybe giving it a number like City 17 or something. And maybe have other super-cities as well, in case something happens to that particular city.

  59. B. Macon 09 Sep 2010 at 1:16 pm

    “I don’t think the town name needs to be so blunt.” Is this addressed towards me? Well, “Capetown” is a slang term. I’ll give it an official name that’s more sterile, though.

    I agree it’d might help to have several super-cities. For one thing, it’d make it harder for readers to guess whether or not the author might let the first one get destroyed, which raises the stakes for the heroes.

  60. NicKennyon 10 Sep 2010 at 12:55 pm

    I kind of want to keep away from the whole metahuman city idea for a while at least. I’m planning on writing a series and in book 3 the world discover that about 1-1.5 million metahumans exist. I’m planning a sort of x-menish plotline. At first the government accept them with open arms, although they do force them to register as metahumans, the Grand Council become an official organisation, metahuman’s are headhunted by companies to work for them. Then, of course, public opinion begins to sour, a lot of people have been put out of jobs by the metahumans, political parties like Britains BMP start opposing them, the worlds governments start to research into suppressive technologies “just in case”. Then you get some friction, protests etc. And then if any evidence of metahumans using their abilities to hurt innocent people and we end up with riots and more extreme govenment action. And I have a mind-controlling villian who wants political turmoil. Bingo.

    P.S. “(“That’s the twelfth bank vault this month without any signs of forced entry. These couldn’t all be inside jobs”).” – I may use this B.Mac.

  61. B. Macon 10 Sep 2010 at 1:15 pm

    P.S. “That’s the twelfth bank vault this month without any signs of forced entry. These couldn’t all be inside jobs”) – I may use this B.Mac.

    Go for it! That’s what it’s there for. 🙂



    If you’re interested in covering the police investigation, a superobservant detective might notice that there is physical evidence of someone walking around in the vault itself (like dirt from outside, especially on a rainy day), but no footprints or other physical evidence leading out of or into the vault. And I assume the thief would sabotage the video cameras somehow.

    Also, one other thing that might stick out about a teleporting bank robber is that he’d clear the place out extremely quickly, so quickly it’d probably look like it had to be more than one guy, especially if he was stealing gold. Gold is heavy (65 pounds per million dollars, roughly), so this guy might well be making off with tons of gold in mere minutes. That would probably stick out to an observant detective, because he appears to be carrying away hundreds or thousands of pounds worth of loot without using mechanical assistance. (The teleporter is probably teleporting back and forth between the vault and his safehouse with 50-75 pounds worth of gold at a time).

    Also, it’s possible that one of the banks would have something like a homing beacon embedded in one of the wads of cash or bars of gold. That could play out in a few ways. If the beacon works, they’d get what looks like a crazy reading, like the bar of gold just jumped hundreds of miles in the blink of an eye. Alternately, the beacon might malfunction for whatever reason–maybe it moved out of signaling range or the teleporting process fries electronics or the safehouse is deep underground and/or made out of something thick like concrete, like a retired missile base or fallout shelter.

  62. B. Macon 10 Sep 2010 at 1:23 pm

    “At first the government accept them with open arms, although they do force them to register as metahumans, the Grand Council become an official organisation, metahuman’s are headhunted by companies to work for them. Then, of course, public opinion begins to sour, a lot of people have been put out of jobs by the metahumans, political parties like Britains BMP start opposing them, the worlds governments start to research into suppressive technologies ‘just in case.'”

    I find this gradual transition more interesting and (hopefully) more believable than X-Men’s mutants being instantly reviled from Day 1. For one thing, it makes the humans in the story seem less one-dimensionally evil, which I think will make readers care more about whether they get saved. In contrast, the humans in X-Men are almost uniformly portrayed as despicable.

  63. NicKennyon 21 Nov 2010 at 2:43 pm

    Wow, I’ve been off for a long time, new school year, busy busy busy etc. Thank’s B. Mac. I hope it’ll come across as believable. I’ve thought up a few other possible factors.

    Normal Human’s cannot register as superhero’s, making them vigilantee’s and thus, criminals. (I’m planning on bringing in a superhero registration act, although this will only apply to mutants who wish to work as superhero’s, not people who just wish to get along with life) I’m imagining this will piss some people off.

    I’m planning on a cure for lycanthropy being discovered in Book Two, so in Book Three, which is were this will occur. The few remaining uncured werebeasts will essentially go on a rampage and kill people. This will breed dislike.

    Still thinking up a few others.

  64. NicKennyon 26 Nov 2010 at 3:30 pm

    Okay, I’m going to give a brief summary of my novel. MAJOR SPOILERS WILL OCCUR! If you steal my plot, I will destroy you. I’m going to write it up in Parts beacause it’s pretty long.
    Part One:

    A group of hitmen are hird by the main villian, Christopher Shepherd, to kill the main character, Adam Lawless. Later, Adam and his girl/friend, Grace Fahey, are walking through Dublin when the hitmen drive by, firing upon them. Adam throws himself to the ground but Grace is shot. Adam lures hitmen into an alley and beats the crap out of them. By the way, he has wings. He flee’s Ireland with his guardian, Sidney, a talking dog made out of metal. A few years later, they’re slumming it in New York but Adam is uneasy and leaves NY. They’re camping out by an old train station in the middle of nowhere when a car somes raging out and attempts to run over Adam, who dodges and attempts to escape when another car drives by, a door opens and Grace shouts at him to get in. The driver turns out to be Christopher Shepherd, although of course Adam does not know that he’s the person who hired the hitmen. They’re taken back to Shepherd’s house where Grace reveals that she can regenerate. Adam is left to himself after meeting some of Shepherd’s friends whom Shepherd is meeting with. He wanders around the house, gets lost and breaks through a locked door and finds himself in a room surrounded by dead bodies. He freaks out and is cornered by Shepherd who tells him that he is a necromancer and absorbs people’s abilities by killing them. Adam dramatically jumps through a big window on a second or third story and flies off. Shepherd conjures up a fireball and is about to hurl it at Adam when a woman (Lady Devine) appears and stops him, telling him that he has no idea what Adam’s ability is, maybe he can defeat attacks back to the attacker or something. A man appears out of the shadows with a rifle and shoots Adam as Adam passes over the horizen.

  65. B. Macon 26 Nov 2010 at 5:07 pm

    Some ideas…

    –When presenting your synopsis to a publisher, I’d recommend covering at least one major choice of the main character. (For example, maybe why he chooses to flee Ireland or leaves NY).

    –What is Shepherd’s incentive to tell Adam that he’s a necromancer? (It might sound cheesy if it’s a “By the way, before I kill you, there’s one thing I’d like you to know…”) One alternative that may make Alan more interesting would be to have him see the weird stuff, successfully escape, and then try to discover what it was he saw back there.

    “Shepherd conjures up a fireball and is about to hurl it at Adam when a woman (Lady Devine) appears and stops him, telling him that he has no idea what Adam’s ability is, maybe he can defeat attacks back to the attacker or something…” This seems to me a bit contrived for a few reasons. First, if he were worried about what powers Adam might have, it was pretty silly to leave Adam by himself. (There are many powers that can break someone out of a locked room).

    A possibility that might work better is having him fire a fireball, but having Adam outrace it. However, a sniper round is extremely fast (probably just below the sound barrier) so it’d make sense if Adam were not able to outrace that.

    Alternately, if it’s important that Shepherd is cautious about people whose powers are unknown to him (which is very prudent), it might help if you established that a bit earlier. Maybe Shepherd uses a sedative in the taxi to knock Adam out (so that he can kill Adam while he’s unconscious) BUT Adam’s ability to fly gives him such a crazy metabolism that he wakes up before the ritual is ready.

  66. NicKennyon 27 Nov 2010 at 5:38 am

    Thanks for the comment B.Mac. Adressing points.

    1. This is a brief summary. I’d definitely write up a more detailed summary to present to a publisher.
    2. Shepherd is a gloater. He’s also incredibly overconfident and wants revenge for his father’s death, who was killed by Adam’s parents despite the fact that Adam’s parents were killed in the battle.
    3. Adam isn’t in a locked room, he’s allowed to go wherever he likes within the house (which is pretty big) he then breaks into a locked room after getting lost. Shepherd also has no reason to believe Adam will turn violent, he’s just after apparently rescueing him from a group of attackers and Adam’s busy talking to Grace. And the skeleton in the closet is behind a locked door…
    4. Shepherd has no need to sedate Adam, he’s just rescued him and Adam’s to shocked by Grace’s appearance to take note of anything else.

    I apologise for not making these points clear. It was a brief summary. I do think I need another reason for Adam discovering that Shepherd is a Necromancer. Bodies in locked room… Meh…

  67. NicKennyon 14 Jul 2011 at 12:06 pm

    I appreciate that there’s been a long break from me, school’s been brutal. Putting this book on hold for the moment because I think the plot’s become too convuluted in my head and I’m trying to mash too many different things together. Am going to ask B.mac for another review forum for another book that I’ve begun writing which will contain elements from this book, although hopefully with a more concise plot and stronger characters. Watch this space.

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