Lets re-read The Dresden Files:

Total posts: [34]
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In honor of my 50lb pup
I know that the whole point of a liveblog is to see how someone who has never read/watched/played a title reacts on their first read/watch/play. Unfortunately, that is not the case here. I am doing this for three reasons: No one else expressed interest in doing it (well, one person, but they had read them too), the people who are interested in the series have probably started reading it a while ago (there are currently 12 books plus other material), and I want to do it for my own reference. It has been a while (years) sense I have read some of these so I hopefully will do alright (even though this is my first liveblog ever).

If I completely fail at making this sound interesting and/or like a first read, I will stop after a couple entries. I seem to be doing alright. Now to evolve this post and make it a table of contents/index.

Storm Front: 1  *,2  *, 3  *, 4, 5  *, 6A  *, 6B  * 7  *, 8  *

Let me know if I should add anything to the hottips.

edited 19th Nov '10 8:24:10 PM by Belian

Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
In honor of my 50lb pup
Book 1: Storm Front

Chapter 1

I thought this was supposed to be a fantasy, not a cheap mystery. Very first couple of pages and already we have the first person POV, overly detailed descriptions of the person at the office door (mailman, not a pretty woman), implications that the owner of the office/POV character has money problems (registered mail is “another late notice from my landlord”), and a sign on the office door that people occasionally change (“Harry Dresden. Wizard.”). Considering how the mailman reacts, this is not your usual office sign.

The second page and there is the first Shout-Out.

Mailman (trying to figure out what the “wizard” part means) Subtle and quick to anger?

Dresden “Not so subtle.” Grabs mail. “Can I sign for my mail please?”

… Got up on the wrong side of the bed Harry?

Bottom of the 2nd page (I swear this will pick up soon...) and we get the classic “My name is...” speech. Better if you see it for yourselves.

My name is Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden. Conjure by it at your own risk. I'm a wizard. I work out of an office in midtown Chicago. As far as I know, I'm the only openly practicing professional wizard in the country. You can find me in the yellow pages, under “Wizards.”

I'll skip the ad itself and just say it reads like a typical detective's ad (though it does include “No Love Potions... or Entertainment”). He goes on to talk about how much of a Crapsack World it is from a purely scientific standpoint and how people don't believe in the paranormal even though they are becoming more aware of it again.

We get a story about how deep in money problems he is at the moment, so it is no surprise that he answers his phone and works to keep the possible client (find my missing husband and no, I don't think the police or a normal PI would hep) talking. He even grits his teeth and offers to talk to her in person for no charge.

So she will be at the office in an hour. Just enough time to go get some lunch. *RING* …Apparently Harry does not trust electronics made after the forties when they seem to be acting up. Anyway, this time it is a woman demanding that he be somewhere in ten minutes. Harry's reply is a "saccharine" Why, Lieutenant Murphy. I'm fine, how are you? speech. Guess they know each other.

New character, new background. Karrin Murphy is the director of Special Investigations in downtown Chicago. You know, the people who get the weird cases that don't fit with normal police operating procedures. In other words, paranormal events. She is calling to get some help identifying what happened to two bodies that died by “means unknown.” And she says it is a good thing Dresden has not had lunch yet.

The chapter ends with with Dresden not taking the elevator down to the ground floor and talking about just how much danger the only wizard in the phone book is in if someone is killing others with magic. He leaves us with this tidbit:

Paranoid? Probably. But just because you're paranoid doesn't mean that there isn't an invisible demon about to eat your face.

How can I top that?

10/322 pages done. Suggestions for Pot Holes would be appreciated as well as suggestions/advice in general.

edited 19th Oct '10 9:47:33 PM by Belian

Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
In honor of my 50lb pup
No replies to the 1st chapter? Guess it was not that bad. I would appreciate some sort of reply, though.sad

Anyway, this chapter was a bit longer and does a lot of World Building. Have fun reading it! goodness knows it was not as much fun to write

Chapter 2

Dresden and Murphy should be on a poster for the Huge Guy, Tiny Girl trope. Him: Tall and Dark (maybe Handsome) with a black canvas duster (Murphy: “It belongs on the set of El Dorado”). Her: short, blond hair, Blue Eyes, never wears dresses, and has a pair of aikido tournament trophies (“She looked more like a favorite aunt or cheerful mother than a hard-bitten homicide detective”).

Oh, and Harry tries to opens the door for her. And the “old contest” relaxes her instead of annoying her. “How bad was it up there anyway?”

A couple minutes (and a paranoid elevator ride) latter and Harry smells blood from the crime scene from down the hall. After passing the officers at the door to the hotel room with a nod, Harry is left to his own devices in the love suite's sitting room. He is Genre Savvy enough to not touch anything with his fingers, but still manages to convey a thorough description of the room including some torn off, black-satin panties. “Kinky.”

His perusal is interrupted by a new Officer. A Detective Charmichael who is “Murphy's partner and the resident skeptic.” A bit of wordplay later (they are not friends) and Harry walks into the bedroom Murphy went to earlier and Charmichael just walked out of...

And I regretted it. I looked, noted details mechanically, and quietly shut the door on the part of my head that had started screaming the second I entered the room.

An image of the two people in the room would have been quite erotic (they were in the middle of something) if it weren't for the fact that "the lovers' rib cages on the upper left side of their torsos had expanded outward, through their skin, the ribs jabbing out like ragged, snapped knives." Of course, this means that there was blood and masses of flesh, that used to be the lovers' hearts, everywhere.

Sometimes descriptions can be too much of a good thing.

One look around the room and an out of place comment is all it takes for Harry to let that little screaming voice take over and make him throw-up into the bucket Charmichael oh-so-kindly provides.

After recovering, it is time for some more World Building Exposition. Not much I can do with this because it is dry and important. Lets go down the list:

  • Someone had used magic to make the lovers' hearts explode from their chests
  • This person had violated the First Law (?) by using magic to harm another
  • “The White Council was going to go into a collective apoplexy.” ...must be related to the First Law
  • Was not a spirit, malicious entity, or something from the Nevernever (lovely name) like vampires or trolls.
  • Wizards can “tap into the fundamental energies of creation and life itself.”
    • Using this life-giving power to kill is worse than a normal murder in Harry's opinion.

Murphy needs to know how this could have happened. Harry's answer: two ways.

  • Evocation: classic spell slinging
    • Problem: have to be near/line of sight to work. A gun would have been much easier.
  • Thaumaturgy: make something happen on a small scale and give it the power to work on a larger scale
    • Problem: need something from the person

  • Killer must have known the victims to...
    • ...get the samples
    • ...have strong enough personal reasons for the method that was used
      • "Wizards have to...believe in [what they are doing] to make it work....[she would have] to be willing to reach inside them [to kill them] like that."
    • The emotions the couple were experiencing during their actions would have helped channel the spell, so the timing was probably intentional.

  • Killer is probably a woman because “Women are better at hating than men.”

Murphy Christ, you are a chauvinist pig, Dresden.

GO MURPH! Anyway, that is quite enough exposition for now. Dresden goes through the whole "I'll get back to you after I do some research" conversation. Jerk Ass Carmichael gets sent out for coffee so that Harry can learn a bit more about the victims. ...guess we just finished the relevant magical info and are moving on to the relevant victim info. How much info can fit in one chapter?

  • The girl: Jennifer Stanton. Works at the Velvet Room.
    • Place is run by Bianca and is a HIGH CLASS escort service
    • Bianca is a vamp. As in vampire. With influence in the Nevernever. (Confused? You are not the only one. Where did THAT come from?)
    • Little chance that she is working with a human because "the White Council made sure that vampires that trifle with mortal practitioners never lived long to brag about it."
      • Murphy does no know this, because you don't speak to regular people about the White Council. (These guys must be Large and in Charge considering where their name pops up)

  • The man: Tommy Tomm. Bodyguard to Johnny Marcone.
    • Make that "Gentleman" Johnny Marcone, leader of the Chicago underworld. (Even more unexpected. This is still only chapter 2 and how many plot lines/back-stories do we have?)
    • He keeps everything organized and freelancing criminals have a tendency to get turned in or "disappear."
    • Better than the alternative of anarchy in the criminal world

ARE WE DONE WITH THE EXPOSITION FOR NOW? This chapter, while writing this liveblog, is taking forever.

Back to an actual conversation (that I can mostly skip). Murphy bemoans her current position as one of the only people in the police force able to accept that the supernatural is around and actually do something about it. A few snarky comments later, and the atmosphere clears up a bit. Enough that Murphy calls Dresden out for lying about how he's not sure he can figure out how the killer did it.

...Wait, what? Another revelation out of the blue? Don't tell me... MORE EXPOSITION?! At least this time it is about Dresden and is told as part of a conversation/decision making process.

Anyway, Harry Internal Monologues about all the reasons and why he can't tell her about them. In his currently unknown past, the White Council placed him under the Doom of Damocles and the Doom will drop if he even looks like he will violate one of the Seven Laws of Magic. Sounds pleasant.

All Murphy understands is that he won't use all his resources to help find the killer and threatens to throw away his number if he does not help. AKA: no more $50 per hour consulting fees from the police department to pay most of his bills. And then she says “please” in a classic Damsel in Distress manner and he caves. He will just have to keep the Council from finding out.

Scene done! Lets leave this place. Oh and it is 2:25, the possible client from chapter one should be at his office at 2:30, and it is a 15min walk. RRRUUUNNN! Down the stairs, dodge the porter, outside, and down the street! Slow down about half way there to catch breath and let the car and two men that had been following him catch up. …Don't tell me that this chapter is not done yet!?

Sense he is now surrounded by three football players, he decides to play it nice and try to talk his way out. Big guy from the car says the equivalent of “Get in the car or else you will get in with hurt/broken legs.” Guy from inside the car is much more polite and talks about giving Harry a ride to his office an how unfortunate it was that the ride could not have started back at the hotel.

(Guy in car) My name is John Marcone. I would like to discuss business with you.

Well he showed up fast. Not wanting to mess with Mister Hendricks (nicknamed Cujo in Harry's mind) and his two buddies, Harry does the smart thing. He gets in the car.

It was turning out to be a very busy day. And I was still late for my appointment.

Took the words right out of my mouth.

30/322 pages done, about an hour of in universe time, more exposition than you can shake a stick at, and plot moving so fast that if you blinked you missed it. By the way, Word of God is that Hendricks has a degree in Philosophy.

Once again, suggestions/advice would be appreciated.

edited 25th Oct '10 8:18:50 PM by Belian

Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
Ah yes, the first couple of chapters in a Dresden Files book is usually exposition extravaganza. I figure the first book can be forgiven for this, at least.

edited 21st Oct '10 12:08:17 PM by slowzombie

In honor of my 50lb pup
A response!

And yeah, it is perfectly alright for the first book to have sizable amounts of exposition. It's just that I am not a particularly fast typer so getting all that down took a while. I don't remember the actual events in the book that well, but I hope that none of the others require that much typing. ...and then I remember that each book has a "Bob" chapter. Well, at least those are silly enough that I'll have something to work with.

If I ever make it to other books in the series, I will skip the character descriptions and just reference the first time they appear. Except if there are important changes, of course.

I'll probably do the next chapter tomorrow.

...Seriously though, how am I doing?

edited 21st Oct '10 10:16:06 PM by Belian

Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
Oh, I'd say good. Undertaking a book series is a lot of work, but then again, the Dresden Files books are actually enjoyable and reasonably well-written, whereas two outta three things I liveblog is so hillariously bad it's actually a little hard to get through.

Now, I wouldn't really worry too much about making it seem like the first time you read the books. Sure, you can do that, but, like Lets Plays, it's fully possible to do a non-blind liveblog , in which case you can sprinkle liberal helpings of trivia or foreshadowing through the re-read, or you can go on as you were, which, frankly, is fine too.
In honor of my 50lb pup
Thanks for the advice. I used it a lot when talking about the Soul Gaze.

Chapter 3

Harry's first impression of Gentleman Johnny Marcone is that he seems “more like a college football coach” with dolor-bill green eyes than “the sort of man who would have [someone's] legs broken or jaw wired shut.”

After getting into the car, Harry proves that he handles stress by being annoying. Marcone is polite while Harry bugs Hendricks about driving and not wearing his seat belt with a smile because “Smiling always seems to annoy people more than actually insulting them.” This also implies that Marcone is not that important.

Maybe I was supposed to be holding my hat in my hand, but I had never really liked Francis Ford Coppola, and I did not have a Godfather

Harry does have a faery Godmother though. As in a member of the Fae. “But that's another story.”

Back to the conversation. Or should I say bribe. Marcone is willing to pay Dresden his hourly fee (the $50 mentioned before) for two weeks (or $1200 a day) to “stay out of Detective Murphy's way.” Cash. Up front because he knows Dresden is a man of his word. Dresden's response is a playing-for-time “I'm not sure” because his seat belt is unhooked, car door is unlocked, and they are almost to his office.

Marcone: I want “to establish a positive working relationship.” Double your normal rate. Dresden: “I just don't think it's going to work out.” And looks into Marcone's eyes. Marcone doesn't look away.

PAUSE THE STORY! Ok, I need to backtrack here. Up till now Dresden has made it a point to not look directly into a person's eyes (He looks at people's noses) because if he does so for more than a second or two an event occurs. Commonly called a Soul Gaze, the wizard and the person he locks eyes with see into each others souls. Each time is unique and literally unforgettable. PLAY!

Dresden's conclusion is that Marcone has a tiger's soul. Marcone gets everything he wants in the most efficient way possible. If that means killing someone, so be it. If that means minimizing the suffering he is causing so that his business runs more smoothly, all the good. He is also dedicated to his goals/people and wants to deal with Tommy's murder in his own way because “his rightful dominion had been invaded and challenged.” He also draws his strength from a shameful event in his past that he would do anything to undo/erase.

Remember the part about how the other person looks into the wizard's soul as well? Harry does not know what other people see in him, but whatever they see usually makes them go pale and, in one case, faint. Marcone did not even blink. This, combined with everything else, convinces Harry of two things: The Soul Gaze was the whole point of the conversation and Marcone scares the shit out of him. And what does Harry do when scared? He shoots out wisecracks/threats. Not smart.

They get to his office and Harry gets out if the car. His thoughts after leaving such “a rotten first impression” are in a different subject entirely:

Oh, well. At least I was going to be on time for my appointment

Nice silver lining.

38/322, and it has still been barely an hour.

edited 28th Oct '10 12:44:23 PM by Belian

Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
Almost done with introducing the major characters now, but at least we're getting some PI-action next, if memory serves.
In honor of my 50lb pup
Not quite yet. Did a bit of reading and there is a little at the end of the next chapter, but it takes till chapter 6 for him to get going.
Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
Chaotic Greedy
Whoah. Timing is great here, I just started reading it for the first time (bought Storm Front last saturday). I'll have to maintain a steady reading speed if I don't want to be spoiled by you...
"And as long as a sack of shit is not a good thing to be, chivalry will never die."
In honor of my 50lb pup
If you pass where I am (not hard atm) and want to do a chapter or two, go ahead. It would be interesting to see how someone who has not read the books handles the blog. And less work for me. wink Ether way, let me know if I start putting in too much foreknowledge. Example: I expanded on the Soul Gaze in chapter 3 because I had to backtrack and it made it easier to understand.

There is also the thread for The Dresden Files if you want to post your reactions.

@ everyone: Modified the 1st post into a table of contents/index.

edited 25th Oct '10 6:15:02 AM by Belian

Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
In honor of my 50lb pup
Chapter 4

Ah, here is the Damsel in Distress that promised to come to the office in chapter 1, currently standing outside said office. In her mid-thirties and good looking, natural blond hair, enough makeup to look good but not overdoing it, and clothes that did not match but still looked good on her. “Wholesome and all-American.”

Quick run through of the conversation and just imagine that everything she does implies that she is nervous (stutters, uses “um,” etc.) and never meets his eyes: Introductions. Harry is glad she does not want to look him in the eye. Offer some coffee to calm her down (she declines) and drink himself to calm down after Marcone. Pick up the conversation where they left off in chapter 1.

New information about the husband: Just packed up and left without mentioning anything to anyone three days ago. Came to Harry and not the Police or a normal PI because the husband had been looking into real magic (like tarot-pronounced ''carrot''-cards) and his disappearance might be related to that. Worked at SilverCo, a financial advising company. *hesitate* Name is George.

...guess how well Harry took that last answer. Harry follows that up with a lecture about how stupid her preconceptions are (wizards are people too... just with a better understanding of the world) while playing to a couple of those preconceptions (put his hands together and steepled his fingers). This gets him the husband's real name: Victor Sells. Back to your regularly scheduled info-dump.

Could be at the lake house on the other side of Lake Michigan. Has never spoken about his family. Friends at his job, but he was just fired so... Harry would like to see the books he was looking at and the lake house address. “Of course.”

Almost done here! She is not worried about the money and, after Harry gives her his rate/disclaimer speech, hands him an envelope. With $500 in it. AKA: enough for “last month's rent and a good bit of this month's, too....At least I wasn't crass enough to dump the money on my desk an count it out.”

Next envelope has the only magic item the husband left behind and a third one has his picture and her number. Then she has to go because school's almost out. Now Harry gets to look in the envelopes.

1st one (money): $500 in fifties that “always look new...because they get so little circulation.” 2nd(pic and phone): pic is of the couple and phone is on an index card. Harry pulls out his cross-listing book and gets more information from that (why do people get nervous about giving their names and then hand him ways to find them out?). 3rd: a scorpion talisman/necklace falls out onto the desk. Nothing creepy about that. Especially with how they are normally used.

Info about scorpions in magic and this particular one: Used in petty/mean spells and supposed to be worn around a neck such that the legs would prick your chest and the tail could poke someone if they hugged you too hard. “Not evil, as such— but...”

Some internal debate about the implications later (the husband actually could have gotten his hands on the supernatural and secluded himself, don't want to test out the scorpion by using it as a focus for a spell) and Harry does the first thing any good detective does: he calls the local hospital morgues to see if there is a matching John Doe. At some point it looks like the scorpion twitches. OK... *double check for enchantments* ...nope, nothing.

So I scooped it up with the corner of the phone book and popped it into the middle drawer of my desk. Out of sight, out of mind.
So I have a problem with creepy, dead, poisonous things. So sue me.

Don't blame you a bit.

50/322 pages and about 2 hours from the start. And there has been no action yet. Nearly done with the set-up, though.

edited 25th Oct '10 8:19:27 PM by Belian

Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
So, tracking down a guy who dabbled in magic and owns a creepy scorpion-amulet. How hard could that be?
Chaotic Greedy
About doing a chapter: That's an interesting offer, but I discovered I suck at it. I tried describing chapter 18 (the one I got to read by the time I was on my computer) and it wasn't pretty... and it was awfully short, to boot.

I loved the book, loved the final confrontation, but as any of my French teachers would tell you, I'm really bad at describing texts.
"And as long as a sack of shit is not a good thing to be, chivalry will never die."
Just a teapot
Nice work so far.smile

I would like to try this too but, I'm always busy and I also am bad at describing anything.
Insert witty one-liner here.
In honor of my 50lb pup
^^Took a look at that chapter. Probably should have tried one with less Navel-Gazing.

^Thanks for the support.

This chapter is giving me some trouble. The conversation with Susan is hard to paraphrasesad. (it does not help that part of it is describing something that was barely mentioned in chapter 1 and I did not mention it there.)

...Also adding The Dresden Files to that trope page.
Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
In honor of my 50lb pup
I AM STILL DOING THIS. But I just got Bioshock and had other stuff to do. AKA: Distracted By The Shiny and Real Life got in the way. Anyway to TO THE CHAPTER!

Chapter 5

Harry now has some money in cash. What's the first thing he does with it? He goes out to dinner at McAnally's pub, just a couple of blocks away. AKA: the local hangout for those in the supernatural world. The entertainment is the company and an old player-piano. “It's less likely to go haywire...”

It is a small place, recessed in the ground, and has has a thing for the number 13. 13 stools, tables, windows, mirrors, and columns (“carved with likenesses from folktales and legends from the Old World”). These are placed to dissipate the random energy that comes off of “broody, grumpy wizards.” Mac, the owner, makes his own beer/ale (best in the city), cooks on a wood-burning stove, and thinks people should get up and pick up their own food instead of having it taken to them. “It's my sorta place.”

It is impossible to tell Mac's age. He is tall, has squinty eyes, a mischievous smile that you almost never see, and “there is a sense to him that speaks of enough wisdom and strength that I wouldn't venture that he is less than fifty.” Did I mention that he almost never speaks but when he does, it is worth listening to?

After giving his order, Harry picks up a newspaper near-by and reads the headlines. One jumps out at him (not literally): another ThreeEye rampage. This is a new drug that supposedly gives a person the third sight, but Harry does not believe that because “If it was serious stuff, the department would have called me by now.” Oh, and Harry was followed to the bar.

Considering his day, his initial reaction is to prepare some quasi-Latin phrases (how he casts spells) and watch the person approach in the mirror while “Mac went on cooking, unperturbed. Nothing much perturbed Mac.” It took until the person was close enough for him to smell her perfume for him to recognize the person as Miss Susan Rodriguez.

She is a “dark beauty” who is currently wearing a business outfit. She has “dark, strait hair” arranged to “enphasiz[e] the lazy appeal in her dark eyes.”

Harry's offers to buy her a drink “while I refuse to tell you anything.” Apparently she is an Intrepid Reporter for the Chicago Arcane who has been following Harry ever sense he set up shop (this makes her a Hot Scoop as well). Considering how it is a magazine that reports on paranormal/supernatural events, this makes a certain amount of sense. Usually the articles are completely wrong, but occasionally true. Harry even tells her about some of the smaller stuff that occurs. This case is not a small event so he does not want to reveal anything about it to her. Also “...if Murphy heard I'd tipped someone off about what happened, she'd have my heart between two pieces of bread for lunch.”

Anyway, back to the actual conversation. And for once they are making eye contact. “She was the one who fainted” from the Soul Gaze during their first interview and it can only happen between any two people once. After the initial banter and round of “Please tell me?” and “No”s, we get a piece of conversation I just have to repeat verbatim:

Susan Just a hint. A word shared between two people who are very attracted to one another”
Harry Which two people would that be?
*Beat* Harry Dresden, you are a thoroughly maddening man. You didn't look down my blouse even once, did you?
sips ale Guilty
Most men are off-balance by now. What does it take with you, anyway, Dresden?
I'm pure of heart and mind. I cannot be corrupted.

Anyone who knows Dresden would react to that sentence the same way. When Susan “tilted back her head to laugh” Harry did look down at her chest. “A pure heart and mind only takes you so far-sooner or latter the hormones have their say, too.” His primary reason for not falling for those sorts of tricks is that his past experience with “the fair sex” has not turned out well ((Understatement, but more on that later).

Susan resorts to simple “Yes or No” questions to find out something about the case. This is actually a fairly effective technique, considering just how bad Harry is at lying. This time he gets flustered after a couple questions where she twists a “No” answer into something important. Then Susan interrupts him with this:

Susan Would you mind having dinner with me Saturday night?
Harry No! I- blink What?

Yep. She just tricked him into agreeing to a date. I won't get into the details she proceeds to lay out, but suffice it to say that it will be a very good dinner and both parties will have to dress up. Oh, and Harry is worried about it turning into an interrogation session.

She leaves and there is a brief “discussion” between Dresden and Mac to help Dresden figure out what just happened. This also means that Harry has to change his plans for the week. New plan is to check out the lake house tonight, talk to Bianca the vampire tomorrow night (little chance Murphy would get anything useful out of her), and then the date on Saturday.

Harry is most worried about the date at the moment for two main reasons. He has no idea whether or not the date will turn into something else and he is not sure if he even wants it to turn out that way.

The second part is an issue because he ended up murdering the first girl he was in a relationship with.

Yes you read that correctly. Serious information in a mostly light hearted chapter that Jim Butcher wrote? Happens more often then you would think all the time. Anyway, the end of this chapter:

I shook my head, bewildered. They say we wizards are subtle. But believe you [and] me, we've got nothing, nothing at all on women

Hard to argue with that after this chapter.

Ended up skipping a lot of details, including most of the flirtatious-gestures/communication/attraction between Harry and Susan, but I think I got the point across.

Along with introducing Mac, I am going to keep track of how much he says in each book. More words=darker overall plot. At least that is the theory.

61/322 and an estimated 4hrs 6 hours from the start.

Mac word counter:

  • words: 9
    • 4 in one sentence.
  • audible non-words: 6

Edit: strikes are because chapter 8 proves I was probably off by a couple of hours.

edited 9th Nov '10 12:43:36 PM by Belian

Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
Chaotic Greedy
Ah, the Intrepid Reporter Going for the Big Scoop. Never a good thing when you have a Masquerade.

edited 1st Nov '10 4:54:02 AM by Medinoc

"And as long as a sack of shit is not a good thing to be, chivalry will never die."
In honor of my 50lb pup
I ended up skipping the part in her description where she has enough instinct and brains to get into ten different kinds of trouble.wink

*steals tropes and retroactively adds them as well as Hot Scoop*

I should start looking at the "related too..." feature and the trope pages more oftain while writting this.

edited 1st Nov '10 10:09:58 AM by Belian

Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
In honor of my 50lb pup
Thought I could get a bit more done before going to bed. I was extremely tired at the end of writing this, so let me know what should be changed (if anything).

Chapter 6A

Dresden stops by his house to pick up a few things: “fresh-baked bread with no preservatives, honey, milk, a fresh apple, a sharp silver penknife, And Zoidberg and a tiny dinner set of a plate, bowl, and cup that I had carved myself from a block of teakwood.”

...What? Not the sink too? Well, I'm sure all will be made clear in due time.

Anyways, he takes it all out to the coolest car you have EVER NOT SEEN! He even has a Badass Nickname for it! Are you ready for this? IT IS *drum roll* THE BLUE BEETLE! It comes with all the comforts you could ever want for your wizard friends: green and white doors (the previous ones had claw marks), a red hood for the front-end storage trunk (the original one ended up with a burn/slag hole in it), and a mechanic who asks no questions and keeps it running 80% of the time OR MORE!

Oh, come on. It is the (formerly) Blue Beetle! How could I not be a Large Ham about introducing it? Ok, I didn't have to, but Rule of Funny. Once I got started, I had to keep going.

He takes his car to the lake house and we get a beautiful description of the drive, lake, and house. Moving on, ...what you want some of that description? No way! It goes on for over a page and I'll come back to it if it is plot relevant. MOVING ON, he pulls around the back, pulls out a black-nylon backpack, and takes a closer look at everything. For a number of reasons, he determines that the house is used a fair amount and would be ideal for a novice sorcerer looking for a secluded retreat.

The only thing that really caught his eye was a red plastic film canister with a gray cap (the kind you take to the developers) that was beneath the deck. Harry picks it up because film canisters are good for holding various ingredients he sometimes uses.

Harry proceeded to check all the entrances and found them locked. This would not be an issue if it weren't for the fact that entering a house uninvited is not an easy/smart thing to do for supernatural entities. Most things that are completely supernatural can not get past a threshold while mortal wizards end up leaving most of their magic outside the door. (This is not articulated vary well till later books.)

That is why he does not break in. “Also, it just isn't polite.” And has only a little to do with the TecTronic Securities control panel Harry saw through one of the front windows]].

He did follow an instinct that the house was not empty and knocked on the front door, but no one answered. While completing his walk around the house he notices some empty trashcans by the house which, being a ways from the road, means that someone must have taken them down the drive and brought them back recently.

He walks toward the lake and thinks about the weather. As in how “it was a perfect night for catching faeries.” This is what those supplies he picked up at home are for.

To Catch a Faery, By Harry Dreasden.

Two things you need to know about before you can catch a faery: True Names and Magic Circles. Each and every being has a True Name unique to it. Two people might have the exact same name, but, when asked, will say their names differently and this is their True Name. Knowing a person's True Name is just as good, in a magical sense, as having some of their hair, blood, etc.

“Most magic involves a circle of one kind or another.” These set a limit to the magic being used and help wizards refine, focus, and direct the magic by putting a screen around the wizard to stop random magic from interfering. Blocking “magic” includes magical creatures. It still requires a bit of magic to close the “circuit.”

Follow these steps: Put the milk in the cup and honey in the bowl. Use the knife to prick your thumb and put a drop of blood on the bottom of the bread then place bread on plate.* Put inside a non-magically charged circle. Whisper the True Name of the one you want to see and it will come to you.

* The blood has a little bit of magic power and, when the faery eats it, that would seal the magic circle.

...And that is quite enough for now. Even skipping that one page of Scenery Porn did not help that much. Other than the part about the car, I have been keeping the descriptions as short as I reasonably can and I am only through 6/15 pages for this chapter.

edited 4th Nov '10 11:04:08 AM by Belian

Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
21 hollow494th Nov 2010 06:52:48 AM from Southwest England
It's amazing how much there is in some of these chapters, isn't it? And so much of it does eventually come back in some form, if not in the same book then a later one.

Really impressed with the amount you're writing on the book. Thank you for the enjoyable read.
22 MurkyMuse4th Nov 2010 04:25:48 PM , Relationship Status: Shipping fictional characters
Magical Girl
This is awesome! I'll be keeping up with it.
Ooooh, awesome character coming up, and one who isn't quite as awesome, but gets better. grin
In honor of my 50lb pup

… ok, don't take that too seriously. tongue

^^^Tell me how I could have possibly written less and still have gotten the point across. Please. Because I don't have a clue. It takes a long time to get through some of these chapters and, at the current rate, I will have reduced the book down to about *quick bit of mental math* 50 PAGES OF TEXT IN THE WORD PROCESSOR I AM USING!? (70 pages book=11pages of blog, 322 pages book total) Luckily, I can shorten the later books a bit by linking back to previous descriptions but still...

Believe it or not, but I don't particularly like writing. I just felt like this had to be done and no one else was doing it. It will also help me remember the details of the books. (There are a LOT of details that can be forgotten.) Now I am not so sure this was a good idea... Oh, well. I will continue for now at least.

Chapter 6B

The faery that Dresden calls has a very musical name that we never find out (“Please, do you think wizards just give that information away?”) and goes by the name Toot-Toot. Toot-Toot flies on by after about 10 min and he is described as being maybe 6 inches tall with silver dragonfly wings; a humanoid, pale/beautiful face and body; a silver nimbus of light; and pale magenta hair.

Toot-Toot is the equivalent of a dockworker. He does not have much power, but if there is information to be found he ether knows the information already or knows who does.

The food items that Harry laid out are all things that faeries (especially small ones like Toot-Toot) like and can't get themselves: milk from cows, honey from hives, and grow/harvest/etc. wheat. This is one trap that Toot-Toot has fallen for many a time and... yep fell for it again. Even recognizes the setup and knows Harry is nearby once the circle closed.

Toot-Toot is a perfect example of the Fae: They all think very highly of themselves and, when caught in this sort of trap, initiate a battle of ability and wills. Unfortunately for Toot-Toot, he is not very strong or strong-willed. The worst he can do is threaten to tell the more powerful Fae about this (can't contact them while in the trap and they would laugh at him for falling for the trap) and do bad things to Harry (Toot-Toot admits that the only one he could do is “Fill [Harry's] mouth with dung”).

It does not help Toot-Toot's case that he is easily distracted. In the middle of a rant about how humans used to be, he spots the food again, saunters over to it, and resumes eating. Even compliments Harry on the bread (because it has no preservatives). Anyway, to give you a better idea of his personality, here is the conversation from after he finishes eating:

Toot-Toot Very well. I have deigned to grant you a single request of some small nature, for the generous gift of your cuisine.
Harry (tries to keep a strait face) That's very kind of you.
(looks down nose at Harry...somehow) It is my nature to be both benevolent and wise
(nods sagely) Uh-huh. Look, Toot. I need to know...*asks question about if someone came to this house recently*
And if I tell you, I take it you will disassemble this circle which has, by some odd coincidence no doubt, made it's way around me.
It would only be reasonable
*“considers” it for a moment* Very well. You will have the information you wish. Release me.
Are you sure? Do you promise?
*stamps foot* Harry, you're ruining the drama!
I want to hear you promise.
*throws hands up* Fine, fine, Fine! I promise, I promise, I promise! I'll dig up the information you want to know. *starts buzzing around in the circle* Let me out! Let me out!

Quite a change of personality at the end there, no? Anyway, “A promise thrice made is as close to absolute truth as you can get from a faery.” Harry lets him out and Toot “vanished in a twinkling, just like Santa Claus.” Who is “a much bigger and more powerful faery.” Explains a lot.

Harry walks around to stay awake because Toot could “fulfill his promise by telling me the information while I was sleeping” and get revenge for the humiliation of being captured.

Half an hour later, and: “Hah Harry!” “What did you find out, Toot?” “Guess!” “No” “No fun at all.” and a comment about Harry's love life to show how closely he is being watched... which makes sense with the knowledge of what happens later, but anyways. Toot is all excited because a pizza car came to the house last night because mortals were “sporting” and needed to “regain their strength.”

Apparently faeries love pizza and only consider things “sporting” if there is “a lot of nudity and lust involved” as they have no concept of normal sports. Now the only question is if Monica will be willing to accept that her husband has a mistress. Well, time to head home...

...or it would be if a guy with a naked sword in his hands did not just pop out of nowhere right in front oh Harry. He is dressed in dark colors, except for his starch white undershirt, and has eyes that the light glints off of like light glints off a sword.

Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden. Irresponsible use of true names for summoning and binding others too your will violates the Fourth Law of Magic. I remind you that you are under the Doom of Damocles. No further violations will be tolerated. The sentence for further violations is death, by the sword, to be carried out at once.

77/322 pages, guess about 9hr 11hr from the start which puts the time at about 10pm 12AM that night.

Ended abruptly because that is how the chapter ends.

Edit: strikes are because chapter 8 proves I was probably off by a couple of hours.

edited 9th Nov '10 12:43:17 PM by Belian

Yu hav nat sein bod speeling unntil know. (cacke four undersandig tis)the cake is a lie!
25 MurkyMuse6th Nov 2010 10:18:50 AM , Relationship Status: Shipping fictional characters
Magical Girl
You know, Toot-Toot has some impressive development...And yay! It's Morgan.

Total posts: 34
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