Author“s diary - 02 - Criticism
Spoilers for volumes 01 to 05!!
Hello readers, author of the novel here. Volume 06 is almost finished and will begin to be uploaded daily probably later today. I know it seems weird considering that I said I would take a break after volume 05 considering the last chapter was something like five days ago, but the thing is, I actually wrote the last chapter of vol. 05 a loooong time ago.
It's just that instead of updating two chapters a day I decided to slow down and updated one chapter per day. Thus I managed to have a lot more space to breathe. God bless the automatic uploading system!
So anyway, before going into the next volume I would like to take a look back just like last time, but instead of talking about how much I love working on this book, I would this time try and point out all of the things that pissed me off about it.
For a while now I have been doing something called "Review swap" with other writers, where we read a bit of each others's novels and try to make a review from our experiences.
I decided that it could be cool to try and review my own novel and see what problems I could find with it, so let's do this then.
Here are my top 10 things I hate about my novel:
1 - I'm an absolute disaster when it comes to detailing things. What I mean by that is that many times a scene will just say "There was a young girl, there was a city, there was a creature", and that would be it. What was the girl's hair color? What was she wearing? How tall was she? Was she thin or fat? What did the city looked like? Stuff like that I always forget to detail properly and it always makes me fear that it will be to vague for the reader to picture in it's head.
The worst offender is probably the character of Ashley. I think it took me something like five chapters for me to actually say what she looked like because I legit forgot to give he a design.
2 - Speaking of forgetting, I keep forgetting my own lore!! There were so many times where I would write a development and then I would read early chapter and find out "Shoot!! These things don't match!". Like, I wrote that Evlin was the only Expert magician in the world below the age of twenty, but then she imidietly fights the prince who is about her age and is also using expert magic.
To fix that I had to explain in later chapters that the prince was actually using white crystals during Ashley's conversation with Xadi.
Probably the biggest wasted opportunity however was Daren's fear of heights. Until someone pointed out in the comments, I had totally forgotten that Daren was also afraid of falling just like Evlin. This really pisses me off because during the Evlin x Daren fight, her strategy consists of making Daren fall and this could have been a great opportunity for me to explore his character development since he did overcome his fear in the chapter "Silver hair" (Which was also one of my favorite chapters btw and I completely forgot to put on my favorite chapters list!!! See how easy it is for me to forget things??).
I try to address this up in volume 06, but man... What a huge, huge wasted opportunity for Daren and Evlin to talk about their shared fear...
03 - I keep focusing on Evlin too much. Yeah, this is just straight-up favoritism, no excuses about it... During the fight against Boris it honestly would have been a great chance to put the spotlight on Lilith, but I imidietly knock her out and make Evlin fight instead. Same thing with the fight with Marcus. Everyone gets knocked out in seconds and only Evlin remains left to fight. I need to stop putting so much focus and Evlin and let more characters shine.
Don't worry thought, I feel like I handled this really well in volume 06!
04 - Speaking of fights... I suck at doing fights! Yeah, I think I mentioned in volume 03 but I never know when it's the right time to end a fight. The battle with Marcus honestly made me feel like I could have done much more... I feel like in the hands of a better writer that fight could have been much more epic... But that brings another problem... Which is...
05 - I'm too soft on my cast. I mean... Ok, no I'm not... "Fragile Heart" is living proof that I have no problems giving characters a hard time. But when it comes to physical damage I always get really nervous and get cold feet. Sure they will get hurt or stabbed or whatever... But I always hesitate when it comes to causing some real damage.
Going back to the Marcus fight, I feel like I could have made him much scarier if one of the characters had lost a hand or a leg or something... But I just didn't have the guts to do that.
In fact, originally, the reason Evlin couldn't fly with sphinx was because the hunters were supposed to have cut off his wings. But again... I just found it too cruel and made it so Sphinx would inherit Evlin's fear instead.
06 - Every single Evlin fight ends the same way. She makes a gauntlet and punches someone in the face or stomach. I kinda joke that this is her signature move, but yeah, I need to work on that.
07 - My bizarre obsession with ten chapters for volume. For some reason I keep trying to finish the volumes all in ten chapters as if I was handling a season on a netflix show. Because of that, things will sometimes wrap up a little too rushed. I mean, the first three volumes came out fine since there wasn't so much plot yet... But volumes 04 and 05 I feel like I should have added more stuff. Starting from volume 06, volumes will probably go on for twelve or fifteen chapters so that I can have more space to build up the premise, explore the premise, and finish things up in a proper climax.
08 - My other bizarre obsession with changing the status quo. This is more of a volume 01 problem, is not that big of a deal right now... But during volume one I just could not stop changing the status quo.
I just imagine the reader going, "Oh, guess we will follow Daren's adventures with Marceus then! Switch!! Oh... Guess we will be following Marceus time serving the Goddess then! Switch!! Ok... Guess we will be following Marcus serving the goddess then Switch!! ... Will... Will we follow Daren and his team waking up from their sleep? Switch!! Evlin...? Who the heck is Evlin???"
09 - The bad grammar. I am not native English speaker so for the longest time I had no idea that you were supposed to use "I" in caps in sentences instead of "i". I installed the "Grammarly" plug-in to help me with that, but I still keep finding so many mistakes whenever I return to old chapters...
10 - And the last thing that I hate about my novel, which is kinda also part of number 05 and 07's problem, my bad guys lose too easily... Because I keep trying not to hurt Evlin and the gang too much and I keep trying to keep volumes condensed, it sometimes feels like my villains will suddenly run out of hp just so we can move on.
I think that's enough bashing my own novel for now... Let's hope I can learn from my mistakes and can do better next time... Enjoy volume 06 Coming tonight, something around 18:00 pm Gmt+1.
Never mind! The timer for the chapter release came out wrong and I can't hide it again... Huh... Enjoy the early chapter release I guess...
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