Escape Artists
November 19, 2018, 08:52:22 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News:
 
   Home   Help Search Login Register  
Pages: [1] 2  All
  Print  
Author Topic: PC224: The Navigator and the Sky  (Read 5461 times)
Talia
Moderator
*****
Posts: 2680


Muahahahaha


« on: September 04, 2012, 10:52:03 AM »

PodCastle 224: The Navigator and the Sky

by Ian McHugh.

Read by Darren Kelk, of ScifiSurplus.com.

Originally appeared in Giganotosaurus. The story text is available here.


“Sing, Kio Lea! Sing!” Tapa O heard his wife urge, even over his own exhortations to his nephews and grandsons to paddle.

The young men bent their backs. Sluggishly, the big double-hulled canoe moved out of the harbour. Huddled on the platform that joined the twin hulls, a pile of shadows beneath the platform’s roof, the men’s wives tried to quiet their crying children. The sail hung slack, dyed orange by the light of the fires ashore, its turtle motif half-hidden in its folds.

Kio Lea’s voice rose at last. Tapa O put a hand to his chest, feeling the song in his heart and lungs, the pulse and breath of the world. His granddaughter’s voice belonged to the days of the ancestors, he was fond of boasting, when mankind still had one foot in the realm of the gods.

The Wind arrived, the goddess leaning into the sail as she inhaled Kio Lea’s song. The canoe surged forward. The young men gave a ragged cheer, the sail with its painted turtle filling out proudly above them.

Tapa O hauled on the tiller, bringing the canoe around. His eyes roved the heavens, mapping the tracks of the stars without needing to check the brass cylinder of the star compass at his feet. The Wind was a slight thickening of the air around the sail, distorting his view of the constellations directly overhead.


Listen to this week’s PodCastle!
Logged
Listener
Hipparch
******
Posts: 3187


I place things in locations which later elude me.


WWW
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2012, 07:27:35 AM »

This story is somewhat similar to a novel being written in my writing group right now, and I'm enjoying that, but for some reason stories like this don't work in audio for me. I'd probably read the text if it crossed my screen, but I had difficulty listening to it. Maybe it was the narrator -- the story flowed too smoothly over me. That's not a criticism, by the way.
Logged

"Farts are a hug you can smell." -Wil Wheaton

Blog || Quote Blog ||  Written and Audio Work || Twitter: @listener42
John_in_Calgary
Extern
*
Posts: 15


« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2012, 04:21:33 PM »

I just wanted to say that I did find this story typical of podcastle's stories.

Technically well done. The story itself not flawed or bad. The voice acting well done. But I just didn't care for the whole.

There have been a number (at least I remember there being a number of) of slice of fantasy life stories on podcastle. Tales in which we spend a short time with some characters in which they basically reset at the end of the tale and the story is about their growing choice to keep doing what they were doing or to go down a different path later. I rarely enjoy these stories, as they often have characters that do not Do anything. This story felt the same way.

The story hung on the reader/listener connecting to the characters, and I completely failed to do so. So once the story moved into the mythic in which beings don't have descriptions but rather descriptors - Mother of the Earth etc- I didn't care what was going to happen I just wanted it to end with a satisfactory conclusion. When it did end I was unable to remember what the secondary characters goals were to know if they were happy or not with the outcome. This is no doubt from my lack of connecting to the characters at all.

The myth nature of the story, combined with my mental image of a canoe as being without a mast, could perhaps be pointed to part of the disconnect. I was not able to enter the world of the story, nor connect to the characters. The characters felt so very passive, not active members of their own tale. Even at the end or hero just has others overcome the challenges around him to resolve the story.

I don't regret listening to it, as it wasn't bad... I just didn't like it. I will continue to download and listen to podcastle's stories, having been with podcastle since the beginning.

Thanks for the story, even if I don't want to ever hear it again Smiley
Logged
Unblinking
Sir Postsalot
Hipparch
******
Posts: 8660



WWW
« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2012, 09:13:57 AM »

Yeah, this story didn't interest me much.  The part where I started getting interested is when the stars started getting knocked from the sky, and I felt like there were actually some stakes here which my mind had just been wandering before that.  After that it kept up a reasonably brisk pace, but the story was way too long for its content.
Logged
Father Beast
Lochage
*****
Posts: 515


« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2012, 01:42:31 PM »

[Yawn] Yet another story where the gods live close to the people and magic is woven closely into the lives of ordinary people. [Yawn]

Just Kidding. I love this kind of story and will listen again soon.

So much here to love: The price of magic, determination and perseverance, Family ties.

I think it's a win on almost every level.
Logged
Moby Click
Palmer
**
Posts: 35


« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2012, 11:02:11 PM »

Something that often happens to me when I'm listening to podcasts is that I lose the thread of the story or thought. I do a lot of my listening while walking my dogs, driving or doing jobs around the house, so if I get distracted by the lawnmower playing up, the dogs tear-assing through the kitchen or just something shiny, I'll find myself 5 minutes in with no idea of what's going on. This happened 5 or 6 times to me withing the first few minutes of "The Navigator and the Sky". I found myself repeatedly wondering who was who, what they were running from and where they were running to! I think a combination of mental preoccupation, the names of the characters, and the way the story flowed so smoothly (as Listener mentioned) combined to let the thing wash over me. Sometimes its nice when this happens, but this time I persevered, skipped back a bunch of times and was glad I did.

Stories about family, loyalty, and generations passing on their gifts and knowledge really tug at my heart strings these days. I think it's because I'm at the stage where my wife and I are thinking about having kids, and we have a great extended family with little nephews that I adore, but every time there's a sniff of family peril I get really emotionally involved. So, I loved the relationships between the characters here. I also thought the scene with the stars falling was brilliant. The part where Tapa O dragged and guided the canoe through the water was beautiful; a perfect fit for the themes of the story and a great metaphor for how the older generations can guide and support their descendants.

This story isn't one I'll particularly be coming back to over and over, but I really enjoyed it after a little persistence!
Logged
Max e^{i pi}
Hipparch
******
Posts: 1038


Have towel, will travel.


« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2012, 08:00:41 AM »

Fascinating story, terrible reading.
Apparently Mr. Kelk was absent from school the day they learned about punctuation. He never paused at the end of a sentence, often paused in the middle of a sentence and had a complete disregard for question marks, quotation marks and various sundry other little notations that humans use to convey meaning and further intent to the text. Add that to the oft-remarked complaint about the lack of an audible cue between sections and what we are left with is what might be a wonderful story that was totally ruined by the ineptitude of the narrator.
Hopefully I'll have the time to read the text, because this story really does interest me. (I gave up 20 minutes in)
« Last Edit: September 11, 2012, 08:15:14 AM by Max e^{i pi} » Logged

Cogito ergo surf - I think therefore I network

Registered Linux user #481826 Get Counted!

Talia
Moderator
*****
Posts: 2680


Muahahahaha


« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2012, 08:26:12 AM »

Please remember the forum's main rule.

There are ways to say you thought an improvement could have been made without being derogatory.

Please, please people, remember to be kind.
Logged
Max e^{i pi}
Hipparch
******
Posts: 1038


Have towel, will travel.


« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2012, 09:22:08 AM »

Please remember the forum's main rule.

There are ways to say you thought an improvement could have been made without being derogatory.

Please, please people, remember to be kind.
I generally try too. When I have something negative to say about the story or narrating I often usually hint at it rather subtlety and in a sort of apologetic manner. And I waited 4 hours from my failed attempt to listen to this episode before posting, to give myself time to calm down.
But when I started reading the story, and realized that Wind, Sky and Earth are proper nouns, I lost it again. And for that I apologize.
There is a way to pronounce words with capital letters, and now suddenly, when I realized that these are proper nouns, the story makes so much more sense.
Again, I apologize for the way I wrote my previous comment, I was out of line. But let's also remember that this is an audio production, and therefore one of the main things that people will notice is the quality of the audio. If the narrator completely fails to deliver the story in a coherent manner, then we have failed to deliver a good podcast.
The problem, I think, is that the quality here (and on the sister podcasts) is usually so good that I've come to expect such excellence as a matter of course. And when that quality is lacking it is really quite noticeable.
Again, sorry.   Undecided
Logged

Cogito ergo surf - I think therefore I network

Registered Linux user #481826 Get Counted!

ThomasTheAttoney
Palmer
**
Posts: 27


« Reply #9 on: September 12, 2012, 10:41:13 AM »

story was maddeningly slow

the dogs tear-assing  <- funny.   through the kitchen or just something shiny,   <- funny    I'll find myself 5 minutes in with no idea of what's going on. This happened 5 or 6 times to me withing the first few minutes of "The Navigator and the Sky".  <- true   I found myself repeatedly wondering who was who, what they were running from and where they were running to!   the names of the characters, <- yes, fancy names for no reason.  writer should give the fancy name and then a short nickname,. bringing back the full name for something official 

 I think it's because I'm at the stage where my wife and I are thinking about having kids,   <- you should totally do this.  If you have healthcare, there is no reason to wait.  People who say "having kids is the toughest job you'll ever love" are people who complain about everything.  It more like "the only hobby you'll ever have that loves you back"  And the costs of raising children is greatly inflated by money managers.  Children are less expensive than most adult hobbies.  And college is no longer a question for children born today. It will either be government paid by then or few people will bother because its useless. 

http://www.smbc-comics.com/index.php?db=comics&id=2729#comic     (comment on college)

Your  comment had better description, character development, and motivation than this story.  Perhaps the writer could send things to you for critique?

Logged
Unblinking
Sir Postsalot
Hipparch
******
Posts: 8660



WWW
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2012, 11:47:17 AM »

story was maddeningly slow

the dogs tear-assing  <- funny.   through the kitchen or just something shiny,   <- funny    I'll find myself 5 minutes in with no idea of what's going on. This happened 5 or 6 times to me withing the first few minutes of "The Navigator and the Sky".  <- true   I found myself repeatedly wondering who was who, what they were running from and where they were running to!   the names of the characters, <- yes, fancy names for no reason.  writer should give the fancy name and then a short nickname,. bringing back the full name for something official 

 I think it's because I'm at the stage where my wife and I are thinking about having kids,   <- you should totally do this.  If you have healthcare, there is no reason to wait.  People who say "having kids is the toughest job you'll ever love" are people who complain about everything.  It more like "the only hobby you'll ever have that loves you back"  And the costs of raising children is greatly inflated by money managers.  Children are less expensive than most adult hobbies.  And college is no longer a question for children born today. It will either be government paid by then or few people will bother because its useless. 

http://www.smbc-comics.com/index.php?db=comics&id=2729#comic     (comment on college)

Your  comment had better description, character development, and motivation than this story.  Perhaps the writer could send things to you for critique?


Any chance you could clean up the quoting there?  I don't think Moby Click said everything that is quoted as Moby Click saying, and I'm having trouble separating out what Moby Click said and what you're responding to.
Logged
Kaa
Hipparch
******
Posts: 614


Trusst in me, jusst in me.


WWW
« Reply #11 on: September 12, 2012, 12:30:58 PM »

Hmm. I was going to comment that I rather enjoyed this story. Then I read all the comments up to this point and wondered what I missed.

Doesn't matter. I did enjoy it.
Logged

I invent imaginary people and make them have conversations in my head. I also write.

About writing || About Atheism and Skepticism (mostly) || About Everything Else
Unblinking
Sir Postsalot
Hipparch
******
Posts: 8660



WWW
« Reply #12 on: September 13, 2012, 08:45:34 AM »

Hmm. I was going to comment that I rather enjoyed this story. Then I read all the comments up to this point and wondered what I missed.

Doesn't matter. I did enjoy it.

Trust in the one with the snake avatar to be the voice of dissent.  Wink 
Logged
Kaa
Hipparch
******
Posts: 614


Trusst in me, jusst in me.


WWW
« Reply #13 on: September 13, 2012, 10:37:35 AM »

Trust in the one with the snake avatar to be the voice of dissent.  Wink 

I think you mean "dissssssent." Smiley
Logged

I invent imaginary people and make them have conversations in my head. I also write.

About writing || About Atheism and Skepticism (mostly) || About Everything Else
Max e^{i pi}
Hipparch
******
Posts: 1038


Have towel, will travel.


« Reply #14 on: September 13, 2012, 11:11:21 AM »

Trust in the one with the snake avatar to be the voice of dissent.  Wink 

I think you mean "dissssssent." Smiley
You do know that every time I look at your avatar I hear Trussssst in me.... Jussst trusssssst in me.... in my head, right?
Logged

Cogito ergo surf - I think therefore I network

Registered Linux user #481826 Get Counted!

Kaa
Hipparch
******
Posts: 614


Trusst in me, jusst in me.


WWW
« Reply #15 on: September 13, 2012, 11:27:06 AM »

You do know that every time I look at your avatar I hear Trussssst in me.... Jussst trusssssst in me.... in my head, right?

My work here...is done.
Logged

I invent imaginary people and make them have conversations in my head. I also write.

About writing || About Atheism and Skepticism (mostly) || About Everything Else
Unblinking
Sir Postsalot
Hipparch
******
Posts: 8660



WWW
« Reply #16 on: September 14, 2012, 08:31:39 AM »

Trust in the one with the snake avatar to be the voice of dissent.  Wink 

I think you mean "dissssssent." Smiley

Ah yes, forgive my poorly executed dialect!  I mean, "Ah yesssssss".  Smiley
Logged
MDS
Extern
*
Posts: 7


« Reply #17 on: September 14, 2012, 02:17:55 PM »

Couldn't get focused -- I lost the thread many times and never quite caught on to who was the wife, who was the daughter, etc etc. Maybe I'll try listening from the beginning again.
Logged
Anfractuous
Extern
*
Posts: 5


« Reply #18 on: September 14, 2012, 08:28:03 PM »

I enjoyed the story quite a bit.  There aren't many stories of any genera set in a Polynesian milieu so this was a pleasant change.  I think the story was well written and the grandfather character was interesting.

Now to the narration.  I liked the narrators voice and some of this vocal story telling, particularly some of his emphasis on descriptive passages like the cold emptiness of the sky palace but the comments regarding pacing and understanding of punctuation are all spot on.  If I had to guess I would say this was the first time he'd read the story, at least that's how I sound when I'm reading new work aloud for the first time.  Besides being more familiar with the work he may find it helpful to print the material with CLEAR  indicators of sentence ends, I occasionally have complete paragraph breaks after each sentence so I know when a phrase is continuing.
Logged
InfiniteMonkey
Lochage
*****
Posts: 483


Clearly, I need more typewriters....


« Reply #19 on: September 15, 2012, 02:01:17 PM »

Again, another story I found uncharacteristically long for me*. I've been having a problem keeping up with the podcast, and the length actually hasn't been helping (though that may change soon).

I too have a problem with connecting with the characters early on; I think part of it may have been the narration. The cadence at the beginning to my Gringo ears sounded like the sound of someone wrapping up a story rather than starting it out; it was a little rushed.

But I did like it more when it was stripped down to the main character and the daughter-in-law simply because it was easier to follow, and I appreciated the Polynesian roots of this fantasy. 


*(and don't think I've not noticed that the next story is a "Giant" as well  Wink )
Logged
Pages: [1] 2  All
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!