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WIP Dragons of Ice and Fire by serpentguy - M - A Song of...

Discussion in 'Books' started by Invictus, Jan 7, 2017.

  1. Invictus

    Invictus Heir

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    Title: Dragons of Ice and Fire
    Author: serpentguy
    Rating: M
    Genre: Adventure/Drama
    Status: WIP
    Fandom: A Song of Ice and Fire
    Pairings: Jon Snow/Daenerys Targaryen
    Summary: There are things hidden in the far north, secrets buried under ice. Jon Snow faces the White Walkers early, and stumbles upon a power that could change the world. It forges a new path for him and everyone around him - and a new journey south, a journey as a dragon. The world begins to change - with steel and snow, fire and blood...
    Link: https://www.fanfiction.net/s/12200320/1/Dragons-of-Ice-and-Fire

    First thing a first, this fic is an excellent read, despite the urgent need of the author for a beta. It's very well written, most of the time, characterization is on point, with the characters voices and thoughts being almost as good as Martin at times (his Sam is perfect. I hate him just as much as I hate Martin's Sam!). Jon keeps things interesting and it's truly the first time I see a dragon used more than just as a plot device to either 'power up' a characters position or bring problems. Sonagon is a character, and quite the interesting one at that. The reading flows quite almost always, with some glaring problems once in a while, and it's just some good to read.

    This fic, is above all, a competent take on a clichés. It also does something that I loved and have never seen before, which is to really incorporate a Dragon as a character, and make it part of the boot besides the use as medieval nuke.

    Now the issues. The first and foremost, is the author's obsession with Daenerys. His fixation on making her and Jon is some kind of ASoIaF Power Couple despite both being two continents apart the entire story up to now, makes no sense at all. There will be no room for anything organic to be developed, and I literally can't see a reason to pair them up besides author fiat to see his fandom couple.

    He brings up this parallels to the extreme at chapter Eleven, where he all but rehashes most of Danny's campaign of freedom to save the slaves, instead with wildlings and the others. It looked as dumb as it sounds, and again, there was no need for that. He could marry Jon to many other characters, who are both nearer and makes more sense for his necessities to save the wildlings (from Val, to Yigritte, to Asha and others), but he is fixated on Danny and making them 'equal opposites' as shown by the title.

    The other major issue is the repetition. The author chapters are huge, so he obviously writes it in chunks, but the final product leaves a lot to be desired in continuity, with most characters thinking the same thing three or four times over and over, which can be quite aggravating when reading all chapters at once, since it's a problem that pops up constantly. Problems with grammar, word repetition and bad choices of word are common too.

    Finally, my personal issue with this. Nowadays everyone seems to think they are GRRM and can write multiple PoVs and not suffer from extreme bloating, a frozen advancement of the plot and characters dragging shit on. While this fics handles such issues much better than your usual shitty fics, the other PoVs just aren't nearly as interesting as Jon, some aren't interesting at all. Jon's plot is the main pull of the story, hell, it's the entire reason it exists. Why not focus in it? I don't give a fuck about Sam or Bran, and certainly not to Daenerys. Or even Stannis and Davos anymore. The author seems to be afraid of breaking free from Martin's shadow and just let the story be about Jon, which is stupid.

    All in all, it's a really good read, that could be fantastic, but I highly doubt that it will live up to its potential. A 4/5 from me.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2017
  2. serpentguy

    serpentguy Second Year

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    Hello, hello, author here.

    The story definitely really does need a beta, to be honest. The chapters are atrociously long and definitely have fat to cut down. I do make lots of typos and cut and paste errors when writing too. Anyone coming through with a merciless delete key would be helpful. Anyone whose interested let me know, and I apologise in advance for all the whining I'll do about any parts you want to delete :)

    As far as the Jon x Dany pairing is concerned, well, if I hadn't stated explicitly in an author notes that it would be a Jon x Dany pairing, I don't think anyone would have realised at this point. Jon x Dany is way off in the background - don't come reading it if you want an instant Jon x Dany story - and it's not going to be forced in any sense of the word. It'll happen when Dany sails to Westeros, and will focus on Jon's story until then.

    And yeah, 'Dragons of Ice and Fire' is kind of in the name - that's why I said it would be Jon x Dany.

    The story is focused on the north, Beyond-the-Wall in particular and moving down towards Winterfell slowly. Essos has very little to do with it, King's Landing and the south gets brief mentions only.

    Right now i'd say my pacing has been fairly plodding and descriptive, a lot of setting pieces up, gathering armies, but i'm intending on speeding things up with the campaign south.

    Primarily the story is Jon Snow focused, and the response to the different PoVs has been mixed. My personal view is that world-building and different perspective are necessary, it builds up to the overarching plot, and that even if some characters are less active than others at points, the storylines will change and they'll have their moments. If I kept it to Jon's POV solely, it would just feel very, very limited.

    I won't rate my own story, of course. I hope you like it, but, well, I can understand if you don't :)
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2017
  3. Invictus

    Invictus Heir

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    I see you're going for something a la Watson. Hmmm, will wait and see. The fact that you had to state what the pairing was is part of what makes me
    Worry, but I've bitched enough about this, I'm sure.
     
  4. Hawkin

    Hawkin Minister of Magic

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    I've only read up to chapter 8 so far, but I'll finish it up tonight.

    I don't share Invictus' problem with the pairing. I mean, yes there was some questionable foreshadowing, but it was done just as Martin had done it; through the red priestess whose name I never remember.

    I find the shifting PoV to be good too, and refreshing actually. The scene where Robb dies and we're actually in Bran's PoV was nice, if a bit short. It also helped situate the timeline of ASOIAF a bit better for me. Considering the changes concerning the Night's Watch, I believe Sam's PoV were also warranted.

    The pacing is good, not excellent but good enough. Stuff is moving relatively fast, and there is progress on all front in term of plot so far.

    It's major flaw is the writing in itself. There are a lot of typos or grammar error; the author also has a tendency to repeat himself and I'm not talking about small thing like "hair as white as bone" twice, but more like:

    When Jon meets Bloodraven for the first time, the old man tells him is going to warg into the Dragon to bring it to safety. Accordingly, Jon is surprised, and completely lack confidence in such an endeavour. As such he needs to train. A bit later, Jon is training his sword fighting with one of the children and thinking about his training with Bloodraven and how it's hard and difficult to warg; it's not instinctual. In the same chapter, a few paragraphs later Jon speaks with Bloodraven who explains to him that he has to warg into the dragon to bring him to safety, and Jon is shocked at the idea...again.

    I'd give it a 3.5 up to 4.0 maybe once I'm done reading what has been posted. It could easily go up to 4.5-5.0 if the author corrects his grammar and his tendency to repeat himself, as well as how the story progresses in term of plot.

    Keep writing @serpentguy!

    EDIT: I just finished reading this. The same problem as before in term of grammar, but otherwise the story is good. There are plenty of original ideas; I really liked the in-depth exploration of the warg concept with both Bran and Jon, really well done.

    This is definitely a 4/5 for me. Like Lindsey suggested, I think you should post your next chapter in the WbA section and we'll give you a hand in catching these little errors.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
  5. serpentguy

    serpentguy Second Year

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    Yep, that's my fault, the chapter was messy. Generally I write in chunks, and I usually don't write sequentially. When it comes to putting stuff together, i don't always spot the overlaps. In, any case, I've just went back, reread it, and sorted it out. Thanks a lot :)
     
  6. Lindsey

    Lindsey Order Member

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    Easily 5/5 for me; one of the best stories being written right now.

    Yes, it needs a beta, but even without one it is still amazing. Your characters feel real and in-character, and you have a great plot going on. You actually managed to get Jon a dragon but still be original. That is hard alone.

    I also have never seen Jon become King-Beyond-The-Wall, which is a very pleasant surprise. It also makes him truly against the wall. I don't think he can convince them this time unless the white walkers show themselves to Mormont.

    The ending of the chapter you posted yesterday was great. Hearing the rumors of Jon Snow and some beast. It was great.

    I am sad that Robb is still dead as him hearing about Jon Snow would be great.

    If you want a beta, you should post your story in the work in process forum. People would help restructure your story and make it better. We won't be too hard.
     
  7. Invictus

    Invictus Heir

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    Last chapter was quite interesting. Val is a favorite of mine, and it had less repetitions than other chapters. However, they were still present, and I found that Val really lacked a 'wildling mindset' at times, like a slip up.

    Thess aren't terms I would associate with wildlings, things like Free Folk and she doesn't really know southern customs to compare, so it's weird for her to even bring that up. Seems like a very meta thing to do.

    This was a little jarring, and quite unecessary. It broke the flow of the moment, and could've been easily.done through dialogue later, in a more intimate setting. No why idea it popped up though, it's exposition without an objectove.

    And another excellent, if anger inducing, Sam's pov. Forgot about it.
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2017
  8. nahdawg

    nahdawg First Year

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    I like the fact that the author dives into some of the perspectives that have been influenced by Jon's journey. It's cool that we get to see Bran's POV when Coldhands can't come. There are too many ASOIAF stories that do the multiple POV thing with characters we don't know the voice of (I've seen fics with Oswell Whent or OCs or other things) and they end up being dry. It's a delicate balance between too many and too few.

    The story itself is interesting but there is a sense of repetition and some dull moments. Nonetheless, it's one of the best pure ASOIAF stories in a fandom where good stories are extremely hard to come by.

    4.5/5
     
  9. Spanks

    Spanks Minister of Magic

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    Good story. I will reiterate the good things mentioned above; original take on Jon getting a dragon, King Beyond the Wall and so on. All are refreshing to see in this fandom which keep rehashing the same ideas.

    I don't mind the altering POVs. However, I would recommend that you avoid writing POVs for characters whose situations haven't changed much from canon. So, unless something drastic has happens for Dany's story to change it would be best to avoid writing about her or else you will be falling into dreaded canon rehash territory. Bran's POV was fine because the changing situation beyond the Wall has affected the Watch, which inadvertently changed Bran's situation. Now, he isn't going beyond the Wall, and might've found some allies in the North. I'm just as curious about Bran's storyline as I am with Jon's at the moment. Are you going with the Great Northern Conspiracy theory?

    4/5.
     
  10. Cxjenious

    Cxjenious Supreme Mugwump

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    The story is novel and interesting. 4/5 on that account. As for the alternate POV's...it's rather necessary, within so large a world, but I don't particularly like them. But I didn't care for a lot of the POV's in the books either.

    The writing...isn't terrible, but it isn't great either. 3/5. Right around average. As I read the latest chapter, I'm struck by the sheer amount of telling during Val's narrative. I'll quote specific sections when I have access to a computer.

    You don't need a "beta". Just post the chapters in the Work By Author forum before you upload them to FFnet.

    Edit: can't copy from ffn in my laptop.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2017
  11. I Burn Water

    I Burn Water Seventh Year

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    Thoroughly impressed by this story. It certainly started off rough and unpolished, but by chapter 5 or 6 it really hit its stride and I burned right through it.

    Unless the author has done some serious edits recently, I couldn't tell for the life of me that there was some heavy handed jon/dany foreshadowing. She was in it, and he was hinted at, but I'd almost say that Val in the most recent chapter has a clearer path to a relationship with Jon.

    Definitely in need of an editor, but even without one, this is at least a 4/5
     
  12. Menace

    Menace Minister of Magic

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    Don't tell your readers about future plot events in an author's note. It's not necessary. It's never necessary.
     
  13. serpentguy

    serpentguy Second Year

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    Well, I decided to take your advice and post the next chapter in DLP Work by Author. I've just copied chapter 14 there now, before I upload to FF.net. The thread: https://forums.darklordpotter.net/showthread.php?p=963469

    Thanks for the comments :)


    Normally i'd agree, but pairings are maybe the one exception. Lots of pairings are polarising to lots of readers, I figured it was just fair to warn them in advance what was coming. Besides, it saved me replying one by one to the two dozen reviews asking 'who's Jon going to hook up with?'
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2017
  14. Menace

    Menace Minister of Magic

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    In warning the readers that don't enjoy the pairing, you spoiled the latter events of your story for the rest. No matter what happens from here on, we know that Jon and Daenarys will be together, we know that Jon and Ygritte will not, and it is all so pointless. Why are you more concerned with warning people who aren't going to enjoy your story anyway, due to the pairing, than you are with keeping future plot events secret for those who actually care about the narrative you're putting together?
     
  15. Cxjenious

    Cxjenious Supreme Mugwump

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    I agree. The whole "pairing" phenomena is maddening. That's why I keep mum about my own.
     
  16. Rincasta

    Rincasta Squib

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    I can’t really think of anything to criticise about this story, sure there are a few minor gripes but nothing that wasn't easily ignored. This story has been pretty good throughout and these last few chapters have really been great; I look forward to seeing where it goes.

    5/5
     
  17. Robbery

    Robbery Squib

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    After reading the most recent update, I'm excited to see where the story will go. With the Attack on the Wall part mostly done, its time for politics(I guess).

    The story is great, took the premise of Ice Dragons and combined it with the plot of the north wonderfully. Also because the dragon is fully grown to begin with, there is no dragon-rearing phase which is a relief.

    While I appreciate the author sticking to GRRM's style, sometimes it feels a little too spread out over the different POV's, though that is less recently as most of them are in the North in recent chapters.

    Also the author is the guy who wrote Nine minutes, one of the best One Piece fics I have read, so I expect great things.

    4/5 because some chapters need minor editing for flow, grammar and the occasional spelling.