Just a quick note to let you know that I'm still enjoying your story. Keep up the good work.
Author's Response: Thanks! It's nice to see that I've managed to make the story entertaining. Happy New Year, by the way!
Your literary style and character development have reached the point of professionalism since you began this story. Keep up the good work!
Author's Response: Thank you very much! Well, I have taken a conscious effort to improve my writing. For instance, I pay more attention to the final polishing of my chapters.
Oooh. Creepy. Falasmir's collections were most unnerving; I love the way you build atmosphere in this story, I had goosebumps for much of this chapter.
I also enjoyed the brothers' nostalgia for their home in Chapter 4 - a nice touch that added depth to both their characters.
Author's Response: Thanks for reviewing! Chapter 5 was definitely one of the most fun to write this far. At first I feared Falasmir was a bit over the top, but it seems many readers like him. I originally intended to make him less psychotic, but this version was more intriguing.
Nicely nicely...I enjoy reading about OCs and areas of Middle-earth that Tolkien didn't give us much canon info on. You've created your own little "world-within-a-world" here, which I love; you evoke the atmosphere of working-class Minas Anor perfectly, and I'm enjoying the banter between the two brothers. Well done.
Author's Response: Ah, so I succeeded in what I was trying. I went purposely for more gritty and vulgar atmosphere than in Tolkien's writing. The old Professor was a wonderful writer, but to my tastes he didn't give enough space to the average man of the street of Gondor or Rohan. I mean, we learned more even of the lives and attitudes of the Orcs! When it comes to dialogue, it's sometimes a sort of Achilles' heel for me. At times I tend to write it too heavy and preachy, so I give special attention to it. It's a particular challenge to give every character his/her own "voice", but a challenge I really enjoy.
I don't think the idea of a Thieves' Guild is particularly far-fetched; I like it as a concept :)
I see this got nominated for a MEFA - congratulations!! How did you do, if you don't mind me asking?
Author's Response: Oh, I don't mind in the least. Frankly, I didn't do too well, since my story was the last one in its category. I don't feel bad about that, though. My competitors were quality writers and I felt honoured enough when my story got nominated. I also suppose it would have been too ambitious to expect an award from the first ever writing competition I entered.
He wondered again why a fortune-teller or magician had to be dressed like a fool to be believed
This made me giggle!
I'm sorry I've come to this story so late; I kept seeing the summary and meaning to read it, but other things always seemed to get in the way. Anyhow, I've got a bit of time now, so I can work through :) I'm enjoying it so far; I love your characters, and the sense of humour in the tale!
Author's Response: No reason to be sorry, I'm always glad to have new readers. I'm happy that the story is to your liking. As for the characters, I strive to make my characterization believable and as non-Sueish as possible. It's actually more fun to write that way. Also, sometimes I can't resist putting a little pun or gibe in the narrative. Sort of lightens the mood IMHO.
OWW- what a twist! Our robbers got robbed...funny.
Author's Response: Yeah, Gutrune wasn't so sweet and nice after all. Soon we'll see how our heroes react, and I promise they are not going to just accept the theft calmly.
Sorry I have been remiss in reviewing. The new chapters are as great as usual - real good adventure story. I hope you will get a MEFA award for it!
Author's Response: Thanks for reviewing! Nice to see you like the story. There will be a lot of action in the next few chapters, when I finally find time to type them. And thanks for the well-wishes. I'd be truly proud if I won an award.
This story is very inventive and original. I love that combination. The character are realistic and charismatic as if they have been plucked out of the LOTR.
This is the first time I have come across this story, but it was a wonderful treat!
Looking forward to more.
Author's Response: Thank you for your kind words! Well, I try to aim for realism (or, realism as it adapts to Middle-Earth). I'm going to update this as soon as I can, now that my little writer's block has been cleared.
Ahh, so they have acquired a worthy new companion. Something tells me they won't be able to give her a slip anytime soon (he-he!) Seems a bit strange that a woman would travel alone, but then again in 1304 Cardolan was still a prosperous, safe land. Yet in the borderlands along the Great Road that may change. Is there war with Arthedain or Rhudaur at the time?
Your hobbits are delightful and very hobbit-y. Uninteresting objects for a fortune teller.
Author's Response: Well, Gutrune certainly won't be easy to get rid of. And we'll see soon if one of the brothers even wants that... As for the political situation, I'm going to write it so that there's much tension and bad blood, but not an open war. In general I've planned to present the situation so that Angmar's power is still relatively weak, but already felt and steadily growing at the time period of the story. Nice you liked Sigebert and his family. That sequence was actually quite a random idea out of the blue, but it fit into its place and it was mildly amusing to write, so I included it.
Wow - another great chapter. I am much enjoying the story. Real good old adventure story. And Gandalf's cameo! - Gordis
Author's Response: Nice that you like it! As for Gandalf, I'm not going to spoil the plot, but let's say that's not te last time our heroes see him...
That was a very exciting chapter. I don't blame Belhast for being sick after a bloody fight. I've been there myself.
Author's Response: Thanks for reviewing! Well, I tried to make the duo's reactions to bloodshed as realistic as I could.
Great descriprion of the storm. Loved it.
As for the last chapter, it reminds me of John Silver and Jim in the apple-barrel... Mind you, it is no criticism; a good plot-twist is always great, even if it was done before. Post more, please!
Author's Response: Thanks for your review! I must admit that the resemblance of the scenes is intentional. Stevenson's Treasure Island was one of my favourite books when I was a boy. I had already decided that there would be a mutiny aboard the Sea-Eagle, and after reading Treasure Island after many years' pause I decided to adapt the apple-barrel scene to my story, as a sort of homage to Stevenson for hours of enjoyment with his book. I think I should have mentioned this in my story notes. But as I wrote all the dialogue etc. myself and took only the general setting, I think it can be counted as a literary influence, not plagiarism. Good to see you, too, see it so.
I like how Sarge's visit puts extra pressure on Belhast.
Author's Response: Thank you! I thought that Belhast, who already was quite well off, needed some more motivation than just money to accompany Finrosc.
Very interesting new chapter... So - to Tharbad now? It doesn't bring them closer to Rhun, but I guess they will have some great adventures in places we know well about - like Moria or the High pass. Won't they? *wink*
Author's Response: Oh, yes, they will. Actually that was the reason I asked you the permission of using those Rhudaur place names. A well-known canon character will also appear when they reach Eriador. By the way, thanks for the review.