1.2 NOTES

shizuru

*Please comment only on this and previous chapters to avoid spoiling.

(I probably shouldn’t be posting late at night without another read-through, but oh well.)
First, thanks to everyone who replied to research questions. It’s very much appreciated (and may even help other Mai-HiME writers).

What the crep? This whole thing was supposed to be just a transition scenario of about a page long before [blahblah]… and then I slowed the pace down to sort of match the first part (I think?). And here we have it! Something that’s five times longer than it should be. Ha ha ha ha. The only positive thing that might come of this is that the whole thing will end up being longer. Duurrrr.

I’m not sure I got Reito down because, honestly, I don’t remember his character so well. He just struck me as bland and therefore my mind just half-ignored him, maybe. ^^; Hmm. Unfortunately, what few eps I still have are when he’s OL and not Reito.

I have to admit that I really liked the opening paragraph. Buahaha.
As for Nari’s official post–I have noooo idea about the structure of Japanese student councils so I just totally made that up (got a better suggestion? I can still change it). At first I was going to cast her as the treasurer, then realized I might have to write dialogue about accounting (NO WAY). Frankly, inventing a new character is going to be easier than trying to stay in-character for someone I didn’t pay much attention to, I guess. Sorry, everyone.

What else? Internet paragraph formatting without indents is weird, and I don’t like how HTML paras automatically add the line space, since such things don’t appear in normal text editors when you use indents. I might upload the RTF version of Syncope (much) later.

I suspect I just added more confusion without clarifying anything from the first part. Whoops. Mock my lack of plot experience, please, but I will say that some things will be addressed in later specific scenarios. :(

SPECIAL EDITS: 02/2011

I’ve gone through and edited chaptes 1.1 and 1.2 as I meant to do, specifically cleaning up the bad narrative parentheticals. A special thanks to nonpresence and Anonymous from the old LJ account. I had forgotten, I think, to mention something about the 24-hour clock in Japan. In a few places throughout Syncope, I use so-called “military time.” This is because I knew that Japan and the rest of the world outside the United States operate primarily on the 24-hour clock. It wasn’t until recently that I learned actual spoken Japanese allows the 12-hour clock and am/pm differentiation (but how standard this is, I don’t know). Since it doesn’t seem to be a hard and fast rule, I think I’ll just leave the spoken 24-hour notation for now.

Next chapter: 1.3

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15 thoughts on “1.2 NOTES”

  1. No, your Reito was exactly as he should be. He’s like male Shizuru-lite, minus kyoto-ben. I’m really enjoying this. What’s wrong with Shizuru? She’s going to be okay, right?!

    Oh, and about the [click]ing, was that shizuru sort of blanking out? That’s what I’m guessing it meant, but I just thought I’d ask. Anyway, I’m really looking forward to the next chapter!

    1. Re:Reito
      That’s good; thanks for the affirmation.
      Eh, she doesn’t have cancer, that’s for certain. :P I can’t say anything about it until the actual part comes up, and then there will be a whole nice section in the matching notes. Hm.

      Re:[click]
      However you want to interpret it until it’s explained around 1.4 or 1.5. :D

  2. Wow. I was pleasantly surprised by this. Found a nice little link on SA, but I wasn’t expecting it to be this good. And this is only the second chapter…
    The interaction between Shizuru and Natsuki is nicely realistic, and the grammar’s good too. Something that usually doesn’t need to be commented on, but I appreciate the effort. Also, love the foreshadowing. Very much.
    ~Naolin

    1. New reader :D Hi!

      I suspect I could have gotten more interest on SA if I had posted the entire first chapter on the board or possibly all the chapters, but I honestly hate scrolling through pages of forum posts just for the relevant fic text. Oh well, it’s all good.

      Thanks. ^_^

  3. FINALLY!

    Yes, I am finally onto 1.2. It’s a miracle, I know. =)

    I’ve got 1.2 NOTES and Syncope 1.2 open and I’m ready to start!

    I have to admit that I really liked the opening paragraph. Buahaha.

    *cough* You know what was the first thing that came to mind when I read your opening paragraph?
    Underlying heterosexuality and activities of a rather… sexual nature. -___-

    Your word choice, with “grunted” and “prick” just set that tone, in a way. Mind, “prick” is used in a completely different sense, but the underlying tone– that undercurrent is just there.

    I don’t know, it just seemed a little weird and may possibly throw people off momentarily, since the pairing is Shiznat. I think if “grunted” were changed to something else, the “problem” would just dissipate by itself.

    “Babbled”? (Doesn’t go very well with “energetically”.)
    I was thinking of “rambled (endlessly)”, but that wouldn’t really fit in with your “trying to prick the girl’s interest” thing.
    Or maybe you’d prefer to keep it as is, and I’m just the only one with a weird mind. =)


    “Stupid radio alarm. Forgot to turn you off last night.”

    And hmm…
    It took me a while to figure out what’s “wrong” with this part, since I got one of those “gut feelings” about it when I first read it.

    I think dear little Natsuki-chan wouldn’t be speaking in long sentences in the morning. And of course, “forgot to turn you off last night” isn’t exactly long, but you know what I mean. I’d imagine Natsuki acting a bit like Garfield in the morning, like the way you portrayed her. But I think the “forgot to…” part is unnecessary; I find it more effective with just “Stupid radio alarm.”
    (Or “‘Stupid radio alarm,’ Natsuki grouched.”)


    Natsuki arched and stretched with great force

    Ehhhhh. “Great force” sounds… forced. ^^;

    1. Plodding to the kitchen, she sent out her habitual warning growl of sorts on her way.

      “Mmm….”

      I think it would be better if you had something that acts as a transition between “… of sorts on her way.” and “Mmm….” because it kind of seems like her “habitual warning growl” is a “mmm”, even though it’s “habitual warning growl” then “smell yummy food mmm“.

      (Or something to show that there’s a lapse of time between those two actions to clear the ambiguity.)


      “The miso is ready as well as your toast and eggs for each of us. The jam is also out on the table.”

      Sounds kinda weird. ^^; I’m guessing you went with “The miso is ready as well as your toast and eggs.” first? Since it sounds kind of weird with “for each of us” just like that. I get the feeling that you went with “toast and eggs” and decided you add in “for each of us” to show that Shizuru made breakfast for herself too. I think it’s more “natural” if you chopped off the last bit and had “The miso is ready as well as your toast and eggs.”

      OR if you like, I think “the miso is ready, as well as the toast and eggs” would suffice.


      The pleasant smell of fresh food was as thick as Shizuru’s warm Kyoto accent.

      Awesome. I really like this comparison. It enriches the reading experience in two ways simultaneously. =)


      Natsuki was clutching her oversized pillow to the left side of her chest, which made her look quite adorable.

      I don’t know, I think it’s just how I’m used to you being a bit more subtle? It just sounds weird having you say Natsuki looked adorable outright. I mean, if you turned it around a bit and made it sound like Shizuru’s point of view more, then it’d be a bit more natural.

      *laugh*
      Personal preference territory once again.

      Natsuki was clutching her oversized pillow to the left side of her chest, which made her look quite adorable. Blushing, she stomped back to her room to hurl the thing onto her bed and grabbed her robe along the way. Shizuru’s rich laughter pursued all the while.

      I feel that the “effect” would be amplified if the last sentence were a line down.


      … which earned her only a deadly glare.

      Eh, I’m a bit iffy with these things, but I think you’re implying/stressing on the fact that it was only a deadly glare, instead of “… which only earned her a deadly glare.” which is what I think you’re going for.


      Shizuru seated herself opposite Natsuki’s bowl of miso and plate of toast and fried egg and meticulously placed her own bowls of miso and rice beside a small plate of fried egg.

      Oho, this is the clincher, then.

      OH.
      I get it now.
      Okay, this is a lot simpler. -___-

      The comma is a necessary evil in this case as far as I’m concerned. =)
      (“The miso is ready as well as your toast, and eggs for each of us.”)

      Do you get why I was confused, now? I was just thinking “that way” and I guess I couldn’t work my brain around it to make it make sense. -__-


      Eh, in the flashback when you revealed Natsuki being unable to stand libraries… I think that aside is a little… weird. I don’t know why you chose not to put it “in” as part of the writing? I’d like to know what you think about that part.


      … eh? Why is Nari described as pretty? Or does she have a tendency towards self-castigation also? I am rather confused.

      And why is Nari referring to Shizuru as Fujino-sama here? Did what Shizuru ask of her take place after this point, or did she just conveniently “forget”? (I’m trying to be careful with my words here to prevent spoilers, but I feel that I should mention continuity problems.)

      Whoohoo for clicky. =)

      (Sorry if I divided things up incorrectly. I decided to “clean it up” a bit and make it easier to read afterwards, so I may have put a few dividing lines at the wrong places, even though I did check.)

      -I

      1. (It’s so weird to read my earlier chapters now, you know? They feel almost alien. So weird!)

        > Underlying heterosexuality and activities of a rather… sexual nature. -___-
        …That was the “off” effect I was going for, actualy, so I think I succeeded. It was meant to catch the readers’ attention by making them very uncomfortable in a “this is so not right” kind of way. ^_^; Good, bad? I don’t know. I was really just experimenting at this point.

        > I think dear little Natsuki-chan wouldn’t be speaking in long sentences in the morning.
        Duly noted, and good point. :D

        > great force
        That was supposed to lead to the grunt (that a lot of people release when stretching like that), I think. Maybe that’s redundant, though.

        > smell yummy food mmm
        Actually, I had that problem, too, but I couldn’t figure out what to do about it. :P Maybe I could just change the sound itself to something more grunty and less “yummy.”

        > (food suggestions)
        Excellent. Working with lists in a context like this is never fun when I’m more interested in retaining detail than clarity. ^_^;

        > which made her look quite adorable
        I think I’ve moved away from this sort of direct narration since writing this, but yeah, that really has to go.

        > flashback when you revealed Natsuki being unable to stand libraries
        (I don’t remember this part at all, so I’ll have to reread it, but I don’t have time at the moment. I’ll come back to this.)

        > Nari
        That part will have to be rewritten for a proper intro as well. I did remember the “sama” detail; originally I was going to go for the “forgot” route, but I may have to just clarify that. Or do away with it. Whichever. ;)

        Thanks!
        >
        >
        >
        >

        1. So, is Nari supposed to be pretty or not? I don’t know how to “see” her in my mind anymore. I keep thinking of Nari with Midori’s hair, for some reason. I think it’s partially because of the colour. ^^;

          I mean, naturally, she doesn’t have Shizuru’s allure so she wouldn’t have fangirls on her case (mostly because she’s one too) but… yeah. *wants to know if she’s pretty or not, even though it’s unusual to have an ugly anime character if it serves no “purpose”*

          (It’s so weird to read my earlier chapters now, you know? They feel almost alien. So weird!)

          *laugh* Is it that weird feeling of “Ehhh…? Did I write this?” I sometimes feel that “weird” feeling when I read stuff I wrote that I haven’t touched in a while.

          Oh, and I take that back. Nari does have fangirls on her case. Just Shizuru’s fangirls. =)

          Regarding Natsuki’s stretching… I see her arching quite a bit, like having her arms or hands and her head on the bed and just arching/stretching like that? In that sense, your wording works perfectly since you got the right image into readers’ minds, but “great force” just sounds plain weird in there. Just chopping them out wouldn’t be such a good idea (in my opinion) since it leaves the nature of her stretch amidst ambiguity.

          Hm. Regarding her yummy mmm and morning growl, I think it would suffice if you just scratched out the first yummy mmm, since I was thinking that Natsuki already sent her growl on the way, before I was thrown off kilter (off-kilter? =\) by her “mmm” (since it took me a while to figure out that the mmm and the growl were supposed to be different things).

          It may be even better, since it puts Shizuru’s cheery greeting and Natsuki’s adorable growl closer together. Juxtaposition wins!
          But mostly because visualising it would make any Shiznat fan melt. =)

          I think I may have not been clear enough. I’ll just show you which part I meant for the library thing.

          She had discovered that having Shizuru in the room, even if inattentive, helped her concentration a bit in that unfamiliar and uncomfortable silence (she can’t bear libraries).

          Eh, I just felt that “she can’t bear libraries” was out of place. It didn’t serve a real purpose (except for being a point that you’ll refer to in later chapters) and it just felt weird. So like my suggestion from before– I’d suggest you writing it into your writing. What I mean is, maybe, something along the lines of, “She had discovered that having Shizuru in the room, even if inattentive, helped her concentration a bit in that unfamiliar and uncomfortable silence since she couldn’t bear (stand?) libraries.”

          I mean, with the Nari aside where you tell the readers that she just gets bossed around by Haruka, that works well because it does something by being there. And it makes readers grin (possibly) as they imagine Haruka on one of her rampages (but when is she not?) and Nari feeling the extent of the Haruka-esque wrath.

          On a different note, it makes me grin to think of Shizuru getting Haruka to do more work again with the lingerie Orphan incident, where Shizuru seems to be having a very nice dream (featuring Natsuki, of course) as Haruka gets bitten by mosquitoes. =)

          Yay.

          -I

          1. > Nari
            Actually, I visualize Nari as having a very similar character design to that “bad” otome who served the bald Evil King in Otome, except with longer hair. Yes, I don’t remember any names there. ^_^; (And maybe I should use that exact description in the description post. Ha ha ha!)

            And yes, looking back on these early chapters, it feels like I didn’t even write these. Really creepy, you know.

            > great force
            Eh, okay, I think I know what you mean. I’ll think of another way to say it (eventually). :P (And that’s the correct image.)

            > (since it took me a while to figure out that the mmm and the growl were supposed to be different things)
            OH WAIT, I actually understand what you were saying before (meaning I shouldn’t reply to comments and stuff too early in the morning). Actually, the “mmm” is supposed to be the warning growl. So you were right the first time. ^_^; Eh, I think you confused me about confusing you, ha. I could change the “mmm” to mmph or something to make it even clearer, perhaps. Maybe on the same line?

            > libraries
            Oh, I see. Yes, that makes a lot of sense. I think I’d rather just chop it, though, and reword entirely or something. Hmmm.

            1. Huuhhhhh? …
              I’m really confused now. Yummy mmm and habitual growl are the same thing? o.o
              Well, if you changed it to “mhhh…” or something, that would work too, I suppose?

              Um… bad Otome… um… bald king. Uhhhh, not ringing any bells! ^^; I just kind of forgot everything in Otome. Was it the one where Mr. Bald Head was in that dark, stony room with his Otome?

              By the way, don’t you think that the “smilies” they offer here on LiveJournal are simply atrocious?

              Choppy!

              -I

              1. Yep, “Mmmm” is Natsuki’s growl there. “Mmhh” works just as well.

                Re:bad otome
                I’m talking about Fia (of Argoss, I guess).
                I don’t know about the Livejournal smilies. ^_^;

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