StarFall: Spellbinder #1: "Take This Job and Shove It"

William Strickland indomitable.william at
Thu Dec 16 17:35:46 PST 2010

On Dec 16, 2:50 pm, Andrew Perron <pwer... at> wrote:

Wooo! A comment! I love comments!

> This is neat, and an aspect of Medusa that we don't get to see much.
> (Mind you, most female characters in Greek myths would have cause to
> similarly rant, except for the ones who were manipulators *of* men.)

And in some cases, those too.

> This is awkwardly phrased.  But then again, maybe it's supposed to be.

It is and it isn't. Both Chel and I are still hitting our storytelling
stride. She's
new, I'm rusty. On the other hand, words tend to fail a lot when
about insanity, and clinical language isn't Chel's style.

> Weird switch to third-person in this section, by the way.  Yet it
> feels natural later on, in the "origin of Spellbinder" segments.  I
> think it's because here, it switches from first to third to first
> while talking about the same events.

Part of this is that there will be story elements that Chelsea has no
way of knowing herself, or else would only know secondhand; for
Maddy watching television is not something she had direct knowledge
of (although she could guess at it, since she knows Maddy). Even if
she came into the knowledge later on and could relate it, she doesn't
like telling other people's stories; it makes her feel awkward, like
was caught stealing.
I, of course, have no such problems.

> > After a bit of cajoling, he obliged and I popped the top off the case
> > and let the newt out. Tracing patterns and chanting under my breath, I
> > invoked the power that would remedy this little problem. "By the Law
> > of Valcaan, Obeyed to the Letter; 'Es turned into a Newt, Now Make Him
> > Get Better!"
> Heeheehee.  I wonder if this is a case where it doesn't really matter
> what the words were, or if the entity she's invoking simply has a
> silly sense of humor?

This is entirely possible. There is an array of ancient and mysterious
who adore mortal pop culture. This will be a recurring idea in the
story, to a

> Miiiiiigh-ty willpower! *hee hee hee*

<Chelsea> There! See? Isn't it *great*?

> Ahhhhh, so there's an origin before the origin.  Neat!

I decided to move the origin back and break it up into flashback
fragments because
doing it all at once, and all up front, would set almost the perfectly
wrong tone for the
rest of the story. In this story I'm going for, predominantly, a fun,
kind of zany tone.
Chel's history with her family... isn't like that. It'll all get told,
but in small, easily
digestible pieces.

> That is a *great* way of expressing the fuction and the awesomeness of
> the Internet.

Thanks. One of the fun bits about bringing magic into the modern world
toying with the way they interact, and how people used to one set of
view things made by the other.

> Hm.  So, wait, who comes from Realm Nine?  A traditional mythic
> pantheon, or something else?

Something else. Certainly a mythic pantheon, but there's little about
them that's traditional. You might even say their way of doing things

> > "One more thing," added the god. "This... 'internet'. Does it have
> > erotic literature in it?"
> Wonk wonk waa~

I think I'm going to be having fun with Zeus for a while yet.

> That last line doesn't seem to fit.

Perhaps an explanation is needed, but I can handle that in the next
issue. Which should be out before the new year anyway, so hey.
The short version would be that this has to do with certain basic
assumptions that creatures of magic, including the gods, demons,
monsters and so on, have about their relationship to humanity.
The most basic assumption being that they're in charge, and that
they can and will break humanity if it gets too uppity.
But they *like* humanity. Humanity is fun. So one of the Mystic
Defender's jobs is to keep humanity from getting uppity.

> The thing is, here, I'm thinking back to the example with Maddy, who
> really doesn't seem like she needs - or deserves - something harsher
> than that.  It certainly didn't sound like she was turning her ears
> off when chatting with Chelsea - indeed, it looked like she was taking
> the advice to heart.

Maddy means well. However, she's gotten the same advice a few dozen
times by now, and it hasn't gotten her to be cautious about things
that might
set her off, nor has it prompted her to consider finding a way to get
at the
underlying issues. She isn't a bad person, but she *is* being
pampered. And
everyone likes being pampered, right? Of course, considering that
she's been
treated as an abomination for three thousand years, maybe she deserves
little TLC.

> But I'm wondering if this is deliberate - if Spellbinder's bitterness
> is going to lead her to going to the opposite extreme, and if she's
> going to learn a lesson about finding a balance between the needs of
> humanity and the needs of the magical world.

He he he.

> One way or the other, we'll see, I very much hope!  This is good
> stuff.

Glad you liked it! And thanks for commenting.

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