Research this, research that, learn something else entirely…

All I wanted, really, was a list of names commonly found in East Anglia. I now know more about the really amazing assortment of people that have called the southern, eastern, and south-eastern coasts of England home, and the only name I have is Swithin — and I have no idea if I’ll use it for a human or a horse. I did finally settle on a place to set my next story (the aforementioned East Anglia), primarily because I decided that the horse in question is going to be a Suffolk Punch. Which means I now need to know more about horses.

Also, I was reading about Martin Luther last night, and now I need to look into the history of the Lutherans in France, in the hope that maybe my former Welsh pirate and his Breton farm-boy will be less fearful for the future of their souls… *Pats them*

Fridge Logic:

Something that makes sense at the time, but when you go to get a snack you open the fridge door and suddenly realize that it didn’t make that much sense after all. (Or it didn’t make sense, and then you realize that it did). I’d link to TV Tropes, but I’d like to go to bed within the hour…

Anyway. So, I’ve gotten some reviews for First Flight; some are great (Serena Yates!) and some are…less so. (Getting the plot that’s outlined in the blurb is apparently not enough for some people.) Some of the other reviews (they liked it, but…) have been nudging at me for the last few days, so I did something about it. I start with a tangent, but stick with it: I promise I have a point.

I like to draw. I’m not all that great at it, but I’ve amused myself and at least one other person – as well as having inspired someone (because, as they said, they could do better than my paltry doodles). This is not a bid for sympathy, but rather the set-up for my next statement, which is this:

If I have to label the parts of the drawing, then it’s a pretty crappy drawing.

I hold a similar attitude toward my own stories: if I have to write a paragraph or more explaining the story, then I’ve pretty much failed and need to start over. That said, what follows is more or less an explanation. It’s most definitely justification, as well, but I’m more comfortable with justifying things. (Friends and family know that they can count on me to justify nearly anything, heh.)

This is in response to a reviewer on Goodreads, who said that there are some big/important issues that are glossed over in First Flight; it’s also something of a response to another that said First Flight was “unrealistic”.

Nota bene: I am not writing this out of anger or a desire to make the reviewers see the errors of their ways – quite the opposite (it’s hard to argue for realism when one of the main characters is a guy who used to be a bird). I know there are some places where I basically painted some vaguely building-like objects on a piece of canvas and nailed it up over a hole in the background, then pointed off into the distance and said ‘Look! Something shiny!’ in hopes people wouldn’t notice.

Short version is: yeah, there are some holes, and here’s why I left ’em instead of trying to explain in-story. Cut for mild spoilers, just in case.

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*Happy sigh*

So I just finished rereading Shea Meiers’s The Wishing Box. It’s like a Christmas cookie, really, but better in that you can reread it as many times as you want.

And if you’re reading The Wishing Box, you might as well read Michelle’s Enchanted Grounds — it’s sweet in both the traditional sense and in the non-explicit sense (a few kisses, but nothing else).

As for me, I think I’m going to go work on my shy snake-boys story in hopes of giving it away for Pancha Ganapati.