Nomination comments: I realise this is more a short story or novella than a novel, even though it is labelled as such. And as this is my story and I nominated it, I more or less have to fix things rather than vote.
A guard walked through a door carrying a locked metal box, placing it on the counter in front of Jali. The guard pressed his thumb against the plate on the front of the box and the lid sprung open. He started to take the items out one by one, checking them against a datascreen as he did so.
“A wallet, synthetic leather,” the guard said. “Four currency chips, two holographs and a key-access card for 17329 Permel Apartments.” Jali grabbed the objects as the guard took them from the box. “One Coruscanti identification in the name of Jali Dawler, planet of origin Coruscant, born thirty-five standard years ago, occupation Coruscant Security Officer, rank Sergeant.” The guard looked up. “You’ll have to get a new one, soon.”
Jali didn’t smile as he tucked the ID into his wallet. What description did they give to those in his position? “Unemployed”? “Ex-criminal”? “Just got out of jail for something I didn’t do”? It was something he had considered in his time inside, just one of the many things waiting him on the way out.
Just a few minor bits that didn't read correctly for me:
Chapter 1: "He had wanted to visit while Jali had been inside, but since he was married and had children he could risk his job that easily." Seems like could should be couldn't.
Chapter 8: “What was that you meant before? About Tollan?” Should this be What was it you meant before?
Chapter 10: “I’s heads what’s youse doings,” Balor said, shaking his head. “Thiss warnings froms Nuadas.” Heads didn't sound right, so I thought maybe it was supposed to be heards or hears.
That's all I see right now. It was a very enjoyable read. --Kathkira talk 19:33, 20 February 2009 (UTC)
I spoke with Brandon a little while ago, and in the interest of having a story for next month's featured work I am going to pull this and Brandon is going to re-nominate it so I can vote. Choosing a new archivist will take a little while. KatanaGeldar 10:21, 24 April 2009 (UTC)
Minor issues posted above. Waiting for those to be addressed and looking to see if anyone else has any comments. Good work Katana! --Kathkira talk 19:33, 20 February 2009 (UTC)
From the investigative Desk of Atarumaster88
On your main Seventh Star page, you alternate between referring to yourself as "Katana" or "Geldar." Please select one and be consistent in its use.
"Seven years in there, he had missed seven years of life cut down from his initial sentence of fifteen. Misuse of an official position, accepting an illegal payment and tax evasion." These two sentences could use some tweaking. There's some awkward wording, and it took me a minute to realize you were referring to his crimes.
"Jali said, that didn’t interest him one bit, but Balor was always like this" Awkward wording in this particular dialogue attribution.
Some idea of who Cergan on first mention would be a good idea. Who he is, even just a brief phrase giving his species and possibly occupation before the larceny bit, would help a lot.
"but since he was married and had children he could risk his job that easily. " Should this be couldn't?
Some basic physical description for Jali in the chapter should be good. Paint me the picture of the character, maestra. Don't make me guess.
For this chapter, recommend a descriptive buff for 1) Didi's Cafe, 2) Maybe the prison, though I'm less set on this one.
Tira needs a description on first mention or shortly thereafter. At this point, the reader doesn't even know that she's human. Unless you're trying to intentionally obscure her identity, I see no reason to not do so. You may, of course, correct me on that point. ;-)
"A few buttons showed the image of Tira, she gave him a grin with her purple-tinted lips and held up several plast-sealed packages to the camera. " Comma splice, which just reads weird. An mdash; might be better here. (And in case you didn't know, the "long dash" is generated by mdash;.)
"No inhibitions, no hesitations whatsoever, when they parted, Tira tried to remove some of the lipstick from Jali’s face with a wet finger" Another comma splice.
For this chapter, strongly recommend a descriptive buff for Jali's apartment on first mention
"The locker room of Coruscant Security Force headquarters was made on utilitarian lines and could cater for most humanoid species" Awkward wording in "made on utilitarian lines" and "could cater."
Needs a physical description of Tollan.
"He wondered for the hundredth time if Captain Vantel has something to do with it, " Tense.
"Tollan couldn’t wait to seem him. " Perhaps should be "see"?
"This time Tollan forgot his scruples, he sauntered closer." Comma splice.
"Jali knew that he would see Tollan here tonight, they both used to stop here as a matter of course every evening unless one was staying late. That way you could have a late serve of information before heading home. Jali had ordered a Salna Spritzer, yet the bright green drink had remained untouched." Confusing perspective shifts from 3rd person limited (3PL) to 2nd person back to 3PL.
Descriptive buff recommendations: Sorel's
"That way there could be late serve of information before heading home." This sentence needs reworked; fixing the perspective messed with the wording.
Maybe a brief descriptive buff for Tollan's place would be good. Also, I thought Tollan didn't really like Tira?
"she said, she sounded rather worried." Comma splice.
"It took a few goes at the motor but Jali’s speeder bike finally started, he gunned the engine and took off at a breakneck pace." Comma splice after started.
"Anyway, an airtaxi driver would give you a very strange look if you asked to be dropped off at a CO2 processing plant at this hour of the morning" Awkward perspective shift.
"white synth-rubber glove walked towards the main group" I think you're missing an "and".
" He decided against it, it wouldn’t do to have too many knowing about it." A semicolon or — might fit better here.
A sentence or two more on the actual funeral ceremony might not be so bad, but it's up to you on that.
Probably a good to idea to provide some more context on ryll. At least say that it's a spice or drug when you introduce it.
"He quickly reversed the throttle of his bike and he zipped backwards, the speeder going right past him but Jali was ready. He quickly changed gears " Maybe vary up the use of "quickly"?
" Jali watched, disgusted " Missing a comma after "disgusted".
One general recommendation: At least in this novel, you seem to enjoy using a compound sentence structure that looks like this: INDEPENDENT CLAUSE, INDEPENDENT CLAUSE. I.e. "He picked it up, it was his wife Verda." I would recommend that you vary up some of these sentences, as they don't necessarily read well, especially if heavily used. An example of how I might reword the example above would be "He picked it up, and a glance at the display told him that it was his wife Verda calling him." or for a less drastic rewording, "He picked it up and found it was his wife Verda." Just trying to avoid joining the sentences with only a comma.
Another general recommendation: Adjectives are your friend! Also, don't be afraid to use different labels for your central characters once you've introduced them. Ex. "Jali" can be referred to as an "ex-convict." I can't think of too many other labels for your other central characters thus far, if only because there's almost no physical description of the characters, though.
I've made specific objections regarding this, but a brief physical description ranging from a short phrase to a couple sentences will do wonders for helping the reader visualize the character. Important characters to do this for include Balor, Jali, Tollan, and Tira thus far. I'm having a hard time particularly with Jali, which is bad, since he's the protagonist. The bare minimum is species and gender, but it could be a lot more. Things to include with that might be height, build, hair color, eye color, skin tone, any scars or distinctive features, possibly hair style or facial structure (e.g. narrow-set eyes, high cheekbones, etc.) if you're feeling really ambitious. Naturally, you wouldn't generally want to use numbers here, but a general one sentence description. "The brawny Corellian was easy to pick out, given his height of nearly two meters and the long brown mane of hair trailing from his head as he swaggered through the crowd."
Review complete, definitely fewer grammar errors that I noticed as it got later in the book. Story is gripping, if short. I still think a lot of it could use more description. Except for the detail objections, most of these are small, easy fixes. Atarumaster88(Talk page) 01:30, 6 March 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for the heads up guys, I'll get onto them ASAP. KatanaGeldar 04:48, 26 February 2009 (UTC)
Done chapters 1 and 3 with descrptions and fixing the text. Will try and get the rest done by the end of next week. Sorry about the delay guys but my computer has been down. KatanaGeldar 04:30, 20 March 2009 (UTC)
Finished! I've worked on a few more things and tried to work in most of the suggestions, the funeral one I didn't as it isn't where I wanted the story to go. I'd rather get on with the story rather than having characters spout bad platitudes. Anything else I should change? KatanaGeldar 23:32, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
Almost all done. I had one wording complaint and one objection got skipped. Otherwise good to go. :-) Atarumaster88(Talk page) 02:13, 24 March 2009 (UTC)