12.29.2005

#48 Crapometer

Genre -- Dark Fantasy


The king of a small island is awoken by his elderly advisor, to discover that he has been entombed for eight years. Unable to offer any explanation for the king's apparent death, the advisor re-introduces him at court, only to encounter suspicion from the new king, and his wife
and advisor, suspicion that rapidly breeds a mutual distrust.

The king is appalled by the changes since his entombment. Why did the holy dragons revolt, and where have they gone? Is the industrialization by The Path of the Moon responsible for draining the land of magic, or are more sinister forces at work?

WTF? A synopsis is an explanation of things. I have no, zero, zilcho clue what is going on here. Magic drains? Holy dragons? Holy Confusion, Batman, conk me with the cluestick, I’m lost.

The old king and his advisor find themselves in secret opposition to the new king's rule, and are accepted by a group of displaced magic workers; in a twist, the new king’s own advisor provides the means to help fund them.

Magic workers. uh huh. WTF?

A raid on a factory uncovers new horrors: surviving dragonlings have been enslaved as power sources, and the magical beasts are little more than imbeciles.

WTF? Dragons are factory made?

While investigating other factories, the old king is pursued by a raving madman who resists all attempts to shake him off.

Yea, this happens to me in Macy’s a lot.

When his group is almost wiped out, the old king must persuade the scattered remnants to make a final raid--their last chance to uncover the truth.

He learns to his dismay that the factories have one purpose: to distill nectar from the sun. Just one taste of the nectar drives him out of his mind. When he confronts his son with his discoveries, his ravings land him in the infirmary.

nectar from the sun? like yanno...liquid hydrogen?

Following a daring rescue by his advisor, the old king learns that his son's advisor is an imposter, and the madman who had trailed them his son’s true advisor. Easing the madman from his magical delirium, they deduce that the island kingdom has been infiltrated by demons who have driven the dragons to the moon and raised their eggs as slaves. The old king and his advisor concoct a plan and summon the dragons back from the moon.

The danger escalates when the new king's advisor deposes him. Seeking an answer to why the demons are leaving the royal family alive, the old king and his advisor realize that the purpose is to prevent their souls asking the gods for intercession.

The new king's wife is rescued in a daring assault on the palace, and a desperate plan is hatched: one of the party must die so that the gods will intervene.

The old king stakes his claim but is pre-empted by his guilt-ridden son. God demands that Hell control its own, and the dragons attack the factories to rescue their young. Faced with an assault on three fronts, the demons are driven back down into Hell. The old king resumes the
throne, and new hope comes to the kingdom when his daughter-in-law is discovered to be pregnant.

This is a mess.

I don’t even know where to start.

It’s not so much that it’s a recitation of events without any kind of coherant world view or structure, or that the physics of the world don’t make sense at all, it’s that it looks like you took every SFF element you ever saw and threw it in.

The initial entombment is never explained. What or who The Path of the Moon is, is never explained. What the old king is raiding is never explained. That's just three examples.

Mess. Big big mess.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Easy enough to explain this mess: the writer is sadly addicted to some of the less organized aspects of Japanime. Cultural differences make some of it wholly incomprehensible to non-fans.

Thank you again, Miss Snark, for doing this. I count myself singularly blessed to be able to observe your courage and insight.

Now where's that tub full of gin...?

kaolin fire said...

Thanks much for the gut reaction. Definitely a case of 'too close to the story to see what needs to be explained'. We did do the christmas grab bag of fantasy elements, but you'd be amazed at how they actually work together. Shame we didn't make that show in the synop.

Anonymous said...

Miss Snark: off-topic comment here:
before Xmas, you said that if an agent dies while her agency is not a formal company (LLC) but only in her name, "good luck getting your money." You also said the money "becomes part of her estate."

Two lawyer friends of mine say this is hogwash. (one is a Harvard JD) Sure, her bank accounts become part of her estate--yes this will take maybe a year to settle. But if you have a written contract, that money will be paid out to you by the executor of the estate. It's his or her job to pay outstanding debts before turning over the monies to whom the will designates.

I thought the clarification would be uselful for fellow readers of your blog.

Cheers!

Anonymous said...

Can't speak for my co-writer but no, Japanime (ugly term!) is not something I'm addicted to, or even more than mildly interested in. Nice try, no points :).

Beth said...

Many writers name too many characters in a synopsis; this is the first one I've seen that named none. I should think that at the very least, the old king and his advisor should be named.

Robin Gorrell said...

Well, speaking as a non-Harvard J.D. (ahem) Ms. Snark IS right (except in the instances in which she would be wrong...now THAT'S lawyer talk to be sure :)

You getting dough back would depend a whole helluva lot on how much dough is left in the estate and who else is standing in line with their hand out. You file a claim against the estate, if there's money left over after the lawyers and the morticians get theirs, you might see some money back. If not, you might be screwed.

Don't agent's have to keep client funds in a trust account? Lawyers do.