Reviewer: Aragorn Signed Date: 2018.04.25 - 12:17AM Title: Palace
Well, this is certainly unique...and compelling. Look forward to where you take us...
Thank you, Gene. Kind words, and much appreciated! I'm continuing to have a lot of fun with the writing; it has become an adventure of a rather different sort :)
Reviewer: ellen Signed Date: 2018.04.22 - 02:36PM Title: Palace
This is good. Interesting, curious and slightly odd. Having fallen by the wayside (temporarily I hope) fairly early on in your recent series I am determined to keep up with this one.
Thank you very sincerely, Ellen, for the kind words! The four adjectives you used are definitely ones I would happily admit: good and interesting (I'm pleased and flattered), curious (yes, I would think so) and slightly odd (yes, definitely).
In any case, under the assumption that keeping up with a story is helped by reliable posting, hopefully I'll be able to keep up my end of the bargain. The writing goes well, to date anyway.
Reviewer: snapelover Signed Date: 2018.04.20 - 05:26PM Title: Palace
This is a lot of fun! Intense images and interesting, puzzling back story. I mean, lack of back story. Hope to find out more!
Heh heh, yes. The back story is a bit deficient. And will emerge slowly at best. That, I think, is the biggest adventure :)
But yes, it'll come out eventually. Or at least a reasonable amount of it will :) Thank you for the review, SL!
Reviewer: RighT3rantZ Signed Date: 2018.04.19 - 03:11PM Title: Palace
Just glancing at the reviews it seems your new story has been received well, Cheers!
Cool! I am currently in a meeting and will only now write the very brief first bit of what will be a multi-part response.
Your lyrics hit hard! Discriminating readers likely recognise 2002 as, globally, such an angsty time. The IRA accords of the late 90's were getting battered by splinter groups (i.e., the 'Real IRA' idiots). Progress on a Palestine solution was buried under 20 feet of smouldering 9/11 rubble. Corporate greed. Economic insanity. What a foul mess!
A lot of Indie rock really did delve into a lot of that. What I think I might do is to capture some of that societoexistential angst and apply analogies to a rather specific set of anxieties facing our four cryptomagical friends.
Author's Response: Wow -- who knew I could insert an image into these crazy pages! Interesting suggestion on the chord progression! I'm wondering if it might groove well with the Grey Veil lyrics? Need to experiment with the time sig. Anyway, 'Three Feather' I envisioned as kind of bubble-pop, though I think with the right instrument it might be made to sound a tiny bit mean :)
Author's Response: Many things to respond to so, to be suitably mysterious, I am going to leave out some items.
That said, I was surprised at your latest bit of synchronicity, which is in repeatedly using the initials HJ. You'll find out in the next chapter that this is how Harry signs his letters, notes, autographs, etc. I envision stylised cursive capitals.
Chapter 4 does get more into the negotiations aspect, indeed, and there remains the undercurrent of if/whether Harry will sell out. I am teasing with utter cliche on that, but I have a reason. I don't know if anyone will ever do a greasier, more cynical take on show biz greed than Pink Floyd / Money... though you may have an opinion on that :)
Yes on the crib, yes on the reach. A flightly little vignette, but not a throw-away.
Anyway, if anyone else is reading this, I believe we have adequately, collectively mystified. Thank you for the interesting thoughts!
Reviewer: Ronald8472 Signed Date: 2018.04.19 - 12:00PM Title: Palace
This shows promise. Please continue.
Reviewer: TomBombadil Signed Date: 2018.04.19 - 01:32AM Title: Palace
F iWell, if you twist my arm, I’ll persist in speculating! LOL! I had the same response to speculation by readers when writing my “epilogue.” In fact, one major plot twist came out of a speculative review. My only reservation was that I feared I was sounding like that smart-ass who keeps trying to guess a plot out loud in a theater! So, here are my current thoughts — thoughts that have evolved since earlier today. First, the ring: You mentioned the chain first, the the chain followed by the presence of the ring. As you said in your initial reply, this is a powerful symbol, with its perfect, never-ending circle, unbroken and unfailing. Then, both Ginny and Harry, who believe they have never met, react with great intensity. Perhaps it would be understandable if Ginny had a strong emotional response if this is the last, or even most important, heirloom remaining from the time when the “Smith” family was complete! But Harry’s reaction turns the whole scene on its ear! Yes, galant, ever-ready to save the day, Harry might jump to the assistance of any beautiful lady. But his reaction is intense and he uses magic in public. That is obviously something wizards and witches are highly desirous of keeping secret in their current environment. Then you chose to compound this situation between the two with a mutually powerful emotional attraction based partially upon the lyrics of Harry’s song, but primarily, I think, by the magical auras they can mutually sense! Wow! That got my attention and screamed in my ear, “Something major has existed between these two. Finally, disappointment leads to hair-trigger responses of pain-filled anger. Combining the intensity of these factors lead me immediately to the thought that these two were very significant in each Maybe, “engaged,” but the ring described leads to the imagery of marriage.
Have to say I'm thrilled to by the cadre of highly engaged readers I've somehow managed to acquire! I find it immensely good for the writing to have the images and implications read back to me, filtered by someone else's eyes, though another's words. It's a bit like the graduate level creative writing course I audited a long long time ago.
I'll share a secret: people talk about out-of-body experiences, but there are times when writing is, to me, an out-of-brain experience. I'll get going on a creative riff, then turn around later and discover tons of implications that had not consciously occurred to me when I was writing. Sometimes those implications later turn out to be great little plot twists that even I (obviously) might not have guessed :) Anyway, you can see why I value other people's interpretations.
Without yet commenting in detail on your remarkable elaborations, let me ask that you retain in mind one word that wrote. 'Anger'. While I am going to emphasise that each of the four primary characters are good, kind and, indeed, gentle people who are generally making the best of the lives to which they have been assigned, there is nonetheless some 'anger'... or perhaps 'defensiveness'.
Reviewer: TomBombadil Signed Date: 2018.04.18 - 11:41AM Title: Palace
Well, crap! I have twice written lengthy reviews only to drop my iPad and, upon picking it back up, found the reviews as lost as you have written our characters’ memories! It is fascinating to read the emotional whirlwinds that have become Harry and Ginevra. You still have me convinced that the appearance of the ring nd Harry’s willingness to risk discovery by either summoning or levitating it from the depths of London’s drainage system point to this symbol as being extremely important to your story. However, I will stop speculating in public!
Agh! Very sorry to hear that you lost reviews! Very frustrating.
Rather hope you don't stop speculating. Certainly it's your choice whether or not to make it publicly, but the reader/writer dialogue is immensely useful to me. There's no end to the ideas that I get when responding to reader questions or speculations. It is very much like quantum mechanics: the plot trajectory between two points can be virtually anywhere, until the moment when the writer is prompted to make a measurement (i.e., reply to a comment) that pins things down. Whenever a comment pins me down on an issue I had not considered, the plot shifts a little. Usually somehow, better, richer.
Reviewer: MollyandArthur Signed Date: 2018.04.17 - 06:02PM Title: Palace
Love this backstage look into what members of a band go through just prior to a performance! Harry and Ginny seemed to actually sense one another for a brief time during the concert. That makes me wonder what kind of bond and what experiences they had in the past. I suspect that they must have at least met before the magical world was torn from their memories (perhaps they at least made it through Harry's second year and he had the experience of saving Ginny from the basilisk in the Chamber of Secrets). As to the fundamental mystery, I'm just wondering and worrying about the existence of Tom Riddle and what the future may hold for all of these magically unaware former wizards and witches.
You know, I definitely did consider a possible Chamber of Secrets scenario -- it is so very tangible and visceral an experience to bind... but I ultimately went a different route. This diverges from canon really quite early now, and plays out a hypothetical that I 'think' may be quite unique.
That said, yes, it would be very reasonable to assume that Harry and Ginny must have met before. I have just recently (rough draft; chapter 4) touched upon the first evidence of that.
In truth, your fundamental question is quite likely more fundamental than what had in mind, so complimentary tickets to you! For extra credit (let's say, back stage passes) though, you might look at a bit of a broadening and generalization of your question / concern.
The challenge for a somewhat more basic behavioural question remains for other readers to poke at, though. Expect another brief tip or two in next week's A/N.
Well, wasn't this an exciting little review to reply to :) Thank you!
Reviewer: Aurorofthelight Signed Date: 2018.04.17 - 04:52PM Title: Palace
Well this one got off to a raucous start with the boys butting heads - small wonder with a name like the "Stags"! ;) Wonder if that came from someone's patronus? Great tribute to my favorite rock band, Led Zeppelin & their hit,"Stairway to Heaven"(1971)! (Historical note: I had the pleasure of seeing Led Zep live in concert in 1977 during my sophomore year of college and I will never forget the experience! I still own an original Stairway to Heaven poster!) When Lee said to Nevi *groan* we're rollers, I couldn't help but think of the scottish rock band, The Bay City Rollers and their hit "Saturday Night"(1974)! However, I didn't see anything in this chapter indicating their concert was on a Saturday night! Strange, I would swear Ginny was describing seeing Hagrid come out of that alley! Maybe I'm still confused by this thing! Nice seating upgrade for our girls! That description of how Harry was dressed gave me the weird impression you were describing one of the Village People! It seemed like Ginny was having a deja vu moment when Harry started singing! With all the vibes Ginny and Harry were having toward each other maybe he should have been singing Frank Sinatra's "Witchcraft"(1957)! Hated to see their connection get busted, leaving them in a sort of haze that of course reminded me of the song, "Purple Haze" by Jimi Hendrix(1970) which seemed to be an apt ending for this review if not the chapter:
Mysti Stags? Patronus? Hmmm... Good question, yeah?
Harry's get-up? I would say closer to Nirvana perhaps. Village People had their wacky headgear (construction, cowboy policeman, admiral, etc.) and heinous corresponding outfits. Some of those 1970's costumes... shudder!
Concert was on a Friday night so, not quite an alignment with the tartan kiddos from Edinburgh. Another case of shuddersome costumes. Didn't these people realise that people were going to take photos and, er, keep them??
All that aside let me hurry along to what I've been dying to respond to which is *great thought* on Purple Haze! It just barely misses the image that I need, but provides a perfect seque. See next chapter for the allusion, and chapter 9 for details. Brilliant man! That way more than makes up for scarring my visual memory with Village People and Bay City Rollers ;)
Cheers for the Guinness, mate!
Reviewer: zorica Signed Date: 2018.04.17 - 08:06AM Title: Palace
Your use of words is as usual pretty amazing. But those words are confusing me but at the same time I want more.
First and foremost, thank you for the review, and I'm glad to hear you're intrigued!
As far as confusing you, I always listen to reviewers and hopefully learn from them. I'll need a little more to go on, though. This, I would think, is a substantially more basic story than Fires of Time (through which you prevailed). The vocabulary and dialect ought not be terribly thick, though the characters have a human tendency toward somewhat scattered thought. I can imagine the lyrics would be a bit puzzling to a literalist... that's kind of just the way it is with that musical genre.
Anyway, more feedback would be greatly appreciated!
Author's Response: Oh! If you're referring to the plot twist at the very end of the chapter, then it is a good sort of perplexity -- the sort that leads to questions, that lead (eventually) to answers...
Reviewer: Gin110881 Signed Date: 2018.04.17 - 07:23AM Title: Palace
What exactly is the fundamental mystery here?
A German dropping French phrases to an anglophone? La società globale è meravigliosa, non è vero?
Regarding my little challenge, I suppose I suppose I could have mentioned that (in full fairness) I only ask something for which I have already given clues toward the answer. The clues to date will be reinforced here and there, to the point where (even without my prompter) a few readers may start to raise eyebrows. I guess I could also clarify that my challenge was seeking the right 'question', rather than the actual answer.
Regarding your dramatic hypothesis, I suspect FoT has slanted your thinking.
Compared to FoT, this is jarringly different. The main magic is the resilience of ordinary human mind and spirit. Instead of 'Mighty Earth Power', we are left to rely on the strength of human convictions to do right and struggle past life's obstacles. Instead of garbled past-present-future, it is all in the mundane 'now'. Great heroes and awful villains are few and far between, yet little heroes remain to be quietly admired.
Thank you very much for the review, Martin!
Author's Response: I made myself re-read this gem of commentary and noticed one other thing I must respond to. I must admit with all sincerity that I have never performed in anything like my very imaginative rendition of a Camden Palace performance ;) Fun fact number 2, though: I actually did once give a talk in a venue even more grand than the Palace... but I spoke to an audience of *8* people (yes, I counted...) I can recall standing up there, looking way up to the empty balconies thinking, 'Wow, there must be a good joke somewhere in all of this."
Reviewer: Pottermum Signed Date: 2018.04.17 - 06:43AM Title: Palace
Very intriguing, loved the way you described Harry onstage, singing to Ginny but not knowing who or why. Looking forward to more xx
Thank you, thank you! Very kind of you to say, Anne Marie!
More shall be on its way fairly soon -- a reasonably steady stream of weekly posts for the time being unless life gets too odd.