There’s a ton of problems with reading today, a ton.
For starters, you have people like Stephen King making quotes like, “If you have to hunt in a thesaurus for a word, you’re using the wrong word.”
Bullshit. Sometimes I tend to use the word massive quite a bit when describing something, and not just in my writing, but in my day to day life; people tend to gravitate towards certain words; everybody does it. When writing a story, however, it’s important to take notice of that and try to keep in mind that one is writing a very long piece, not an afternoon conversation with friends, but an actual story with beginning, middle, and end, a set of characters, whom should all differ from one another, and provide a point, even if entertaining. If the writer can keep these things in mind then he or she should do their best to hunt for the proper word. For instance, if massive has been used to describe several things already then the writer may want to switch to huge, enormous, large, immense, but which one? It matters.
The enormous, hungry horse doesn’t hit the ear as well as the huge, hungry horse; this is alliteration, something most independent writers know nothing about, and it is very important, so the problem becomes twofold, but I’ll get to that.
First, I want to point out that yes, we all know massive, huge, enormous, and immense, but do you know synonyms for skinny? You can describe people as skinny, but what if you’re writing about a cancer patient? Maybe they’re not skinny, they’re emaciated. Not everyone knows emaciated, and even if they do, it may not be on the tips of their tongues, and they may need to flip through a thesaurus. What if the noun in question is not a person but a zombie? Does skinny work? No. Emaciated? Yes, but how much better is cadaverous? See what I mean? Is cadaverous on the tip of your tongue? I had to find that in a thesaurus. I didn’t just know it. It isn’t a word you just hear, so let’s get back to that problem.
For one, independent writers often don’t have the educational background required to produce a well written story. They may have the best stories around, the most imaginative, unique, inspiring tales to tell (alliteration. I didn’t say stories to write), but they often don’t know how to write them properly for other people to read.
It’s the truth, like it or not, but this doesn’t apply to every independent author any more than it is lacking in every mainstream writer. This brings us to point number two; mainstream writers like King have a team of editors up their ass turning a hodgepodge of words into a novel. There are scores of these editors working together to find the best words, and believe me, they’re the ones using the thesaurus, so maybe King won’t do it, but his team sure as hell does, but these guys, these writers, these editors, all they know is what every writer before them has said is what works, but times change.
Consider music. Every ten years, music changes drastically. The same can be said for television; Saved By The Bell, would not fly today, the episodes of The Simpsons we laugh at today are not the same as the ones from ten years prior, nor ten years before that. Movies change, and that’s why people are remaking so many movies in such a different way, because the culture of today is not the culture of ten, twenty, thirty, a hundred years ago; it’s vastly dissimilar (see I could have said “drastically different” again, but I didn’t), so why are writers, publishers, and editors trying to tell new writers and readers to use what worked a hundred years ago?
Have you tried to read Moby Dick? It sucks! I don’t care what point it’s trying to illustrate, it’s a dreadfully boring read, like David Copperfield, and this is why so many people don’t read or only read non-fiction. That said, go get a college textbook from 1967 and compare it to one on the same subject released in 1997; totally different writing, and not just because the material has been updated, but because people think and talk differently today, which is why writing should also change every decade.
This might sound like a rant to you, and maybe it is, but as a writer, I get sick and tired of hearing how great writers that suck balls are, and I get especially nauseated (see, could have said sick!) by writers who try to convince the populace of how great, and smart, and witty, and knowledgeable they are.
They don’t know anything valid in today’s social circumstances- pretentious pricks -and those people that eat the shit that comes falling out of those writers’ asses just because one guy wrote one great book and 47 other books that no one bought and try to regurgitate that shit as mental nutrition need
to learn to think, and consider, and contemplate on their own, but maybe that’s why they love those boring, old, snoring writers so much, because they haven’t been capable of a single, noteworthy (a synonym for unique), thought, so they just gobble the free falling feces (alliteration) from the mainstreamers….
No man is made great by the simple act of compiling thoughts; a man is made great by compiling relative thoughts into useful ideas, which can be employed by others to better their lives. Don’t use a thesaurus isn’t going to better anyone’s life and the fact I like Dreamcatcher doesn’t mean that I want my writing to resemble King’s, so don’t do what everyone else does, because if you do, you’ll never discover something new, or create something authentic.
The tenth installment of The Adventures of Larson and Garrett is underway. I’m wrapping up another unrelated piece before doing a final round of editing on A People Defiled. This tenth installment will wrap up The Adventures of Larson and Garrett for some time as I have more projects requiring my attention.
“Hey,” Garrett called as he jogged up to Seanessy and Larson. “What do you think about those ogres?”
“I was just wondering about them myself,” Larson admitted.
“I don’t think we’ll be seein’ ‘em,” Seanessy remarked.
“I’m inclined to agree,” the warrior nodded.
“Lyalla is convinced Thomas was telling the truth,” Garrett mentioned.
“And you?” Larson asked.
“Well…I didn’t believe in kobolds until I saw them kill my friends,” the fencer sighed.
“You never mentioned that,” Larson said.
“Never felt it was necessary.”
Garrett drew a long breath and peaked overhead. Puffy clouds washed over the deep blue sky. Some of the clouds were very high and looked painted over a blue canvas; it was a breath taking sight, yet the fencer grew despondent.
“It doesn’t really matter, but I think in this case we should be prepared for ogres. They certainly could live in the mountains, and the men from Faaltosk seemed convinced of their presence.”
“I’m sure they’re real,” Seanessy said.
“They may be, but I would think they could have easily killed an unarmed traveler…I’m just not sure his story adds up, but we’re here to provide safety,” Larson acquiesced.
“Well, technically, we’re here to enter Glenmoor unnoticed,” Garrett corrected.
“Speaking of,” the warrior mumbled, “Mathew wasn’t exactly clear on the details.”
The fencer peeked around then slowed his gait. Larson slowed as well, and Seanessy, who was practically running, slowed to a dwarven mosey in order to listen. Since Garrett felt no one was able to hear them over hooves and wagon wheels, he answered his compatriot.
“So far as I can tell, we’re simply here to escort these merchants into Glenmoor. Once they’re there, our contract is over, and we can parade around the city as tourists. As usual, we’ll hit the taverns, shops, and temples, and see what’s what.”
“But we’re s’posed ta’ flush out Parish, no?” Seanessy asked.
“Yes,” Larson and Garrett said. Then, Larson added, “But flush him out from where, and do what? Where do we corner him and how will we make him talk? We couldn’t even see Owens without Mathew’s magick; he nearly killed us.”
“The detective kind of left that up to us,” the fencer said and pushed back his hair.
“You have a plan, don’t you,” the warrior smirked.
“I do, but I won’t talk about it now,” he trailed off, mysteriously.
Their trek rolled on in relative comfort. There were no monsters and no sights of other traders taking that particular trail. The others of Larson’s crew mixed and mingled with current company, and spirits were high. Marching across the vast landscape of northern Ruvonia was indeed a wonderful sight. Between the northern, jagged mountains, the southern, rocky hills, the pleasurable weather, and the decent company, the adventurers nearly forgot their quest, or at least they were able to take the time to enjoy life. While Larson thought about his brother from time to time, he kept his troubles to himself. He suspected the others were doing the same, and decided to chat about something more amenable.
“So,” he started and cleared his throat. “Seansy, how’s your wife feel about you traipsing all over the country while she’s at home?”
“What’s that s’posed’ ta’ mean?” he barked.
Raising his hands in a half shrug of disbelief, he said, “I mean; she must not miss your terrible attitude too much.”
The warrior smiled. “Tell me about your wife, man.”
“What’s ta’ say? She’s tall, pretty, she can cook, she’s a great mother–”
“Mother?!” Larson and Garrett exclaimed.
“Yes, mother! We’ve a beautiful, baby girl together!”
Laughing, they joked about what a child bred from human and dwarf must look like. “Well, she ain’t got a beard!” Seanessy howled.
The others overheard and laughed. “Did, did you know humans and dwarves could mate?” Larson snickered.
“I did,” Garrett chuckled. “You’d be surprised how many people are half dwarven or elven. They don’t always look like the other races; humans have a way of making their features prevalent…as much as the orcs do.”
“Huh,” Larson mused.
The dwarf shook his head in aggravation. “I’d hate ta’ see yer’ child.”
“Well, now, hold on,” the warrior said. “I didn’t say your girl was ugly.”
“Well, I’m sayin’ yer’ daughter would be!”
Again, they all laughed. Roaring laughter from behind them also ensued. They glanced to their rear. Apparently, the others near the forefront of the group enjoyed themselves just the same. Eventually, as the laughter died down, and feet grew sore, and knees grew tight, and bellies rumbled, they came to halt atop a propitious precipice overlooking the eastern meadows. The greening grasses a thousand feet below them danced, and as the zephyrs caressed the delicate blades, white puffs of dandelions cascaded over the expanse.
Once more, camp was made, except no tents were raised. Someone made a fire from some old wood pulled from a supply wagon. Larson’s crew gathered a dozen or so yards from everyone else.
“How’s erryone’ doin’?” Wilma inquired.
“Traveling in armor is absolutely dreadful,” Lyalla claimed and plunked down on the ground. Garrett had talked her into purchasing a scaled vest like his own. She tugged at the padded seams by her armpits. “My gals are smooshed.”
“Mf, oh yeah,” Garrett said and bit his lower lip, playing sexy.
The elf exhaled and shook her head.
“You’ll get used to it,” Wilma claimed.
“I certainly hope not,” Lyalla fired back.
Yoris looked at Larson, who smiled back. The brute was certainly a strange mix of races. Though a bit greenish of hue due to his orcish heritage, he looked more like a human, but bald with angular features, a big, bottom jaw—which gave him a bit of a somber appearance—and he had dark, shiny eyes. The steel bracers and greaves Mathew had bought him accentuated his immense physique, and the straps holding his leather cuirass in place were ready to burst from his thick torso, yet his placid expression and intellectual demeanor made him an enigma.
“What is it, friend?” Larson asked, his brow furrowed.
The rest turned to him as well, and he said, “I have seen creatures moving through the low peaks.”
“What creatures,” Garrett demanded.
“I believe they may have been the ogres Thomas fled.”
“Did you see ogres?” Larson pressed him.
“It is difficult to say…I saw something,” he answered, looking to the ground. “Yet, whatever it was has only been following us.”
“What exactly did you see?” Lyalla pried.
Slowly shaking his head, he said he saw only figures, shadows that occasionally appeared and vanished before he made an inference. He then admitted they could have been anything, even cultists, undead, or possibly spies of some sort.
“I’d hate to think the forces of destruction already know we’re here,” Larson stated.
“We should take that into consideration,” Garrett posed. “We fought Lionel in Stormguard, and he teleported away before we could do anything. Since he’s in league with Parish, and they can certainly both teleport, they could in fact communicate with one another. No doubt they’ve eyes and ears in Stormguard that told them we joined these merchants, and spies could very well be tailing us.”
“Ya’, or goats,” Seanessy added.
Some clicked their tongues in disgust. Others frowned or bit their lips. Larson removed his helmet to rub at his hair. He heaved a sigh and ventured a glance at his friends. Whatever previous exuberance they experienced from the views of a mountainous terrain quickly morphed into trepidation.
“I doubt these are goats…I’ve heard no bah-ah-ah’s,” Larson joked. “So…this plan, Gare.”
“Right,” the fencer nodded. “I’m going to take into account that Parish is in Glenmoor and that he knows we’re coming. If what Thomas told us is true, Gonzalo and the merchants won’t be able to enter the city anyway, so I figure we escort them to wherever this blockade is. The citizens probably won’t want to let us in either, so we pretend to leave, and once we’re out of sight, we’ll leave Gonzalo to head back to Stormguard. We’ll then head back to Glenmoor to find another way in; this is a city without a wall and east of the mountains, so there won’t be anyway topography stopping us from entering, and once we’re in, we’ll hit the temples and so forth. Besides, Magister Saren had mentioned he sent his clergy there, so they may help us.”
The warrior had allowed his friend to speak without interruption, but when Garrett came to an end, he had a few comments. “First of all, Tarielle’s court wouldn’t even help us remove the White Wraith threat in Stormguard; I doubt they’ll be much help in Glenmoor, and besides, even if we do mosey on in there, won’t a group of warriors stick out like a sore thumb?”
“I doubt it,” Garrett replied, convincingly. “Glenmoor is pretty big. They may be an agricultural community, but that’s our ticket; the people owning ranches on the outskirts of town are far less likely to be caught up in any conspiracy and for a few coins, or charm spells, can probably help us in. I also don’t think anyone would give some warriors a second look; it isn’t like the thousands of people there are all going to know each other.”
“Maybe you’re right….”
“You’re worried,” Lyalla asked.
Shrugging, Larson admitted he was. “I’m still not sure how we’re going to find Parish.”
“We can storm the Church o’ Thaud,” Seanessy suggested.
“That’s a plan I can get behind,” Wilma agreed.
“We can certainly attend a sermon,” Yoris proposed.
“Then, we what, drag Parish out at knife point?” Larson asked.
“I’m hoping Mathew will meet with us before any of that,” Lyalla said.
“He insinuated he would,” Garrett added. “For all we know, all we have to do is get there, but I think we’ve enough of a plan to improvise once we’re inside Glenmoor.”
“Oi,” someone called. The group nearly jumped out of their skin; they had forgotten they were among people, and Doris of Faaltosk had called them.
If you liked the excerpt then do yourself a favor and get started on the series today. You may be surprised that the portrayal of The Adventures of Larson and Garrett is much like Hercules, The Legendary Journeys– sometimes comical, sometimes horrifying, but always with great dialogue and some of the best characters around. try it, you won’t be disappointed!
But don’t just buy books from Smashwords. Sell books through Smashwords. Smashwords offers a super simple type of affiliate marketing where if you simply post a referral link on your site, and people buy the book through your link, you earn a portion of the sales.
Got a bookblog? Constantly discussing books with friends? Well, then, you’re selling books. Might as well earn a cut. Learn more here.