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#7188 · 5
· on Dawn · >>Trick_Question

Hey! It's been a while since I've entered a writeoff. Sorry for the late reflection post, I was away in Vietnam over the weekend and Monday. =x

So yes, I wrote Dawn. One version of the First Draft of the First Draft of a vignette (more like a scene, actually) the morning after the rescue of Crystal Quartz by her boyfriend. Well, it's actually a part of a much larger OC Romance story that I'm still writing for my Anthology of Chaos and Harmony. Clocking at 476 words, it definitely needed another writing pass before submission but it's the writeoff, I don't get enough inspiration unless it's 3 hours from the submission deadline and grasping for ideas. That and my other idea was a cringe comedy involving a human and Princess Celestia the morning after a one-night stand where Celestia insists that she is a human named "Sarah Personson". :trollestia:

Getting back into writing after a few months wasn't making it easy either.

Serious spoilers for the entire plot after this:
Read at your own risk. =P
Warning: Contains copious Tom Clancy tropes.
The plot ignores Griffonstone onwards as this was formulated way back in Season 3.
Crystal Quartz was a maid working in Canterlot Castle and Gerhard (originally named Erhard) was a clerk/dispatcher working in the Griffon Embassy. She fell in love with him after he saved her from a fall from a tower. That in itself isn't remarkable—interspecies couples aren't exactly unknown in Equestria. But the incident caused problems. Gerhard was the son of a prominent general back home and due to the lag in communications—Equestria and United Griffon Kingdoms (UGK) were separated by an ocean—a rival general twists the facts of the incident in an attempt to discredit his father.

When Princess Celestia transfers Crystal Quartz to be her personal handmaiden, the rival general had her kidnapped by a band of mercenaries/terrorists led by Gerald. He also issues Gerhard a race against time to save Crystal. Eventually, the rival general would have Crystal brought to the UGK to implicate Gerhard's father in an "unauthorized intelligence operation for 'personal' glory" scheme. Fortunately, Crystal was saved by Gerhard with the help of a Counter-Intelligence Officer of the Equestrian Royal Intelligence Service by the name of Whisper Wind, who was assigned to "watch over" Crystal for this very scenario. This entry takes place the morning after this rescue.

Gerhard and Gerald weren't brothers or even rivals of Crystal's affections. Gerald called Crystal a "wench" and a "slave" as a method of terrorizing her. He had plans of selling her to sexual slavery after her interrogation by the general, so calling her a slave wasn't out of the norm for him. Gerald wasn't a pleasant guy.

I really need to finish this story. =P

Gerald's name was a big problem. I pronounced Gerhard and Gerald differently: Gerhard with a hard G and Gerald with a soft G, so reading them wasn't that problematic for me. But I forgot other people probably didn't pronounce it the same way as I do. x.x

I was in a mood to update my story canon to Season 6 standards and that meant "G's for Griffons"... I should probably go back to my old naming scheme. =P

The problem with OCs is that we know nothing about them ahead of time. You forfeit one of the most convenient aspects of fan fiction, the preexisting connection between reader and character, and thus must make the former care about the latter.

That was a big problem with the entry, I needed a rewrite but I also had only 5 mins left for the deadline. =x

Also, you should really consider renaming one of the griffons. Having two very different characters with nearly identical names can prove confusing for the reader.

At which point, the similar names don't really go anywhere ...

The name similarities between our two griffons hints at a greater connection, but we don't get one.

I'm not sure what the name similarity is supposed to mean in the first place? It's drawing a parallel between the two Griffons, but I'm not sure what sort of parallel that is.

Because there really isn't any connections between the names. I thought the names were different enough to pass but it didn't. =P

I don't think it's a story-puzzle I'm not getting and I simply need to piece together; there's just not enough pieces, I think.

At only 476 words, I missed out a number of things, stated in the spoilers above.

Picky stuff: does blood really pound in your ears? I don't get a lot of exercise, but I have good hearing and I can't remember ever hearing my blood.

It does for me but usually when I had a migraine or maybe when I'm sick. It's more of an unpleasant sensation than hearing.

I messed up my descriptions again. x.x

My main problem: who the hell are these ponies and what is going on and why should I care? It seems fairly clear early on that Gerald is Sombra, and Crystal might be a symbolic representation of the nation of Crystal ponies, but then what does Gerhard represent? I have no idea. There must be a deeper meaning here that's going waaaay over my head. I don't see it. I don't even see what this has to do with ponies.

Like FoME said, you read too much into the whole thing. =x

Gerhard saved Crystal, she had a night terror and Gerhard comforted her in the morning.

I think there's a ton of data in the author's head that didn't make it onto the paper.

Certainly! The entry's only 476 words long. =(

See the spoilers for more details. :3

It didn't help that Crystal's own name is spelled differently one time as well, making me think the one-letter-off names were more significant than they are.

That was a typo I missed before submission.

There are several other technical problems that need to be cleaned up as well.

Are there examples you can list?

I'm happy you guys liked the premise, watch out for the complete story coming out in the future!

Thanks for all the reviews!
#6495 · 3
· on Through Obscurity · >>GroaningGreyAgony
Well, this horror piece would have been much better if the Vigenère cipher was easier to decode...

I ended up more frustrated because I (still) can't figure out the key for the Vigenère cipher.
#9249 · 3
· on Subject Theta 32
Subject Theta 32

I blame my recent binge reading of SCP Foundation's trope page.

(I probably simply wanted to write an SCP report just for funsies.)

Spike attempts to write a Special Containment Procedure Friendship Report dictated by Twilight Sparkle for her own record.

But the SCP report and Spike's adorable attempts to sound out words over 3 syllables don't mix quite as well as I'd have liked. That and the premise of the Subject in question vying too much for attention made the end result a bit of a mess.

The entry was an unholy love child between my interest in protagonists from The Voice Among the Strangers and Misunderstandings and the aforementioned SCP Foundation. Also, Spike's snarking about Twilight's word choices amused me.

I had fun writing this. :3

Hmm. Looks like Twilight takes over on writing the document after a bit.

Actually, Spike took down the entire thing, except for a few expunged portions. He was still sounding out words but he had a dictionary now.

>>Morning Sun
The problem with this as said by others is that what does the SCP format add here? There's none of the other hallmarks of SCPs beyond the vocabulary used; as in there's no massive paranoia, no comedic-callous disregard for human life, so forth;

This was the major issue. Namely because Twilight (and by extension, Equestria) isn't a paranoid, callous institution. Instituting that paranoia and callousness into the report warps Twilight's character, which I consider even worse than having a "neutered" SCP report. It's a Morton's Fork, really.

whereas DATA EXPUNGED in SCP-verse is a thing for 'This is too dangerous for eyes', censoring here appears done for...why?

There are twofolds to this. Any "Data Expunged" in the editorial section is under the Rule of Funny (Noodle Incident). Anywhere else, It's under "standard" censoring rules. As far as I can tell with the new Normal that the Magical Land of Equestria anyway. =P

The blackbox censors are a throwback to the older versions where those censors still show some partial information. Sadly, this has been discontinued since they cleaned up the articles several years ago. The partial reveal of information taking away from the article was probably the reason why it was cleaned up in the first place.

That said, I will say I'm curious about the actual premise here. A human and a griff-i-taur child? Yes, tell me more! Tell me that story, don't just tease me about it under black bars and edited text!

I know, right? That's what makes SCP articles so maddening sometimes. But their aim is to always encourage the readers to fill in the details themselves. Because Nothing is Scarier. And the interesting stuff never gets revealed. Probably why the censorship was even more serious nowadays.

Very Greek mythology-ish there with subject 2's combination of traits.

I was actually basing it off how hippogriffs traits were expressed. One description I missed was actually mentioning 32-2's beak-mouth, making her look somewhat like the Tengu from Japanese mythology.

Thanks for the read and reviews, even if I confused you with some obscure piece of fanfiction. :3
#6708 · 2
· on Alfred's morning
It was a TCB fic? I got the impression Alfred had always been a pony and his old passport didn't work anymore because he blurted out his identity over the Internet.

But it being a TCB fic makes more sense overall.
#8503 · 2
· on Reveries
From what I can tell, the entire canon Friendship is Magic is basically the dying dream of Night Light as a potted plant after Twilight's magic surge.
#3363 · 1
· on Skirmish · >>FanOfMostEverything

After a little slow start, I didn't expect so many reviews, thanks everyone! :3

I apologize for the confusing lack of context. To ensure the "scene" to be as standalone as possible and fit in the word limit, I ended having to cut quite a bit of setup and description before I even began. Irony.

(Should have been a warning sign that I should have submitted this for short story instead. =P)

So the context is this (expanded some since what I've submitted):

Bright Spark is part of a team in a youth sports called PaintWars, which basically Paintball with medieval weapons (and controlled unicorn magic). Several other races also participate in the sport, mainly the griffons and deer. It was a few years after First Contact with the humans in another parallel world (it's a very long story) and humans have been migrating to Equestria, bringing their own form of the sport, which is of course, Paintball. Since ranged weapons weren't unknown or banned (crossbows and magic were allowed after all), the humans were allowed to play (not necessary in actual competitions, since everyone is still unsure about the humans). And they were decimating their competition with superior small arms tactics and rate of fire.

So the actual premise is that Bright Spark had been hearing rumors about these humans owning her rivals but didn't quite believe it. One fine day, after a war session with a griffon team (which they beat handily), a group of humans approached them for a friendly match, which her team leader Sun Skimmer accepted (and Bright Spark can't help but add a few disparaging remarks, after which it escalated into a bet that if the ponies can't get even one of the humans, they'll have to buy the humans a dinner). Note: expansion in brackets.

And the entry is of course what follows.

actually I liked the "excessive shaky-cam" effect here, because it's used intentionally.

In all, this does a good job of conveying the confusion and desperation of the climax, but it’s the narrative equivalent of excessive shaky-cam; you captured the mood, but I can barely make out what happened.

That was probably because it needed an editing pass, only the first half barely got any editing done on it.

Also, it’s not really clear how the humans did what they did

At the very least, I would have liked to know what the humans did to win.

Like I said above, the second half needed editing to make it clearer (and to figure out exactly how the humans located and tracked the ponies).

What actually happened was they had a lone gunner in the ponies' path to the thicket and two more further back (all in concealed positions). The lone gunner initiated harassing fire (which took down Broccoli and Lily Vane) and spooked them into an ambush by the other two (which took down Sun Skimmer and Stratus Cloud). Bright Spark and Cauliflower were finished off by a paintball grenade.

On top of that, the mood itself feels kind of indecisive. It's treated as extremely serious, yet it's just a Capture the Flag game. We're not really told why this is (is there some kind of political stake? are these war games?), so it's hard to figure out if the description of the event is meant to be taken seriously, or if the description itself is supposed to invoke hilarity through its over-seriousness. Either way, I'm just left scratching my head.

It probably has to do with my writing style and me haven't nailing down the narrative voice yet for this entry. First drafts tend to do that to me. D:

And I don't know if it was inspiration or coincidence, but the ponies' weapons reminded me of this.

This is totally what I envisioned for the pony weapons. :pinkiehappy:

Once again, really thanks for all the reviews! :3
#6612 · 1
· on Through Obscurity
The 10 o'clock bit was pretty obvious.

I tried it and it didn't work. D:
#8505 · 1
· on True Ascension
Not sure if this is a shout out or reference to Andy Weir's The Egg but it certainly is very similar. Hmm.
#4 ·
· · >>Frogmyre
Oh snap.
#1177 ·
· · >>Baal Bunny
>>Baal Bunny
And I've been wondering where you've been. o_o