The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

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The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Ham Nox on Wed Jan 27, 2010 10:59 pm

The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Chocolate

A Work In Progress

I'm still deciding whether or not I'm going to be able to pull off a suitable 'make everything right' ending, because this book is intended to go DEEP into the very core of things and make the reader question everything they think is true. So yeah... might wind up being in Apocrypha.

I have a bunch of crazy stuff planned for this story!!

Chapter I - Blind Men and Interruptions

1 In the time before the internet, but not before the invention of chocolate,
2 (For there would be no book of chocolate in a time period where chocolate did not exist or was not just about to be invented)
3 There lived a great spiritual leader among the Pastafari known as No-Eyed Jim.
4 He was well-loved by the people for his wisdom, which he had plenty of time to gather as a blind man paid on disability, and didn't have to work.
5 And he was indeed very wise, especially for someone who had managed to lose not just one, but BOTH of his eyes.
6 He was strong-willed, well-disciplined, and a very powerful speaker, and it came to be that his word was treated as authoritative in all walks of life.
7 Under Jim's wise words of guidance, the Pastafarian people thrived.
8 They reaped of the most delectable pasta-making grains that the land could offer.
9 They drank of the best-brewed draughts in the land.
10 The most beautimous strippers traveled from all over the world to perform for the budding young pirate men of the faith who, according to ancient myth and local gossip, were quite well endowed.
11 And though the Pastafari worked hard for all they had, they played even harder.
12 In those days, it was a terrible tragedy indeed to miss a Pastiesta, or a Bar Pastah,
13 For in those days a good party was never great until the Pastafarians arrived!
14 One night, the followers of the Great Noodley One gather about the water-boiling fire after a particularly wonderful day of celebration to hear the words of No-Eyed Jim.
15 Though the time for his story telling neared, No-Eyed Jim was nowhere to be found.
16 This did not upset the people, for they knew that he preffered to make a dramatic entrance
17 As boisterous laughter and shantying died down and gave way to the still silence of the night, the Pastafari waited with bated breath and keened senses for his entrance.
18 The dramatic tension of the crowd slowly began to edge into nervous panic.
19 Just as everyone began to wonder if a search party was in order, the fire before them suddenly flared high and bright, startling many a newcomer and burning more than a few unwisely positioned buttocks.
20 As watchers' eyes adjusted to the brightness of the fire, a dark figure could be seen on the other side of the flames.
21 And just as suddenly as it had flared, the fire died down to a soft glow of embers.
22 The soft glow lightly illuminated the deeply scarred face of the mysterious figure, allowing for it to be recognized by the crowd.
23 Of course, it was No-Eyed Jim.
24 He stood tall and proud, in rich gold and burgundy regalia.
25 He sported a custom double eyepatch over his unseen and unseeing eyes, but he seemed to look straight into the souls of the crowdmembers as they gazed upon him.
26 "Welcome, all ye faithful," He spoke.
27 Though his voice was barely above a whisper, his words were heard by all.
28 Excepting a few low groans from the fools struggling to sit on their sore butts, the crowd was silent in hungry anticipation of the night's speech.
29 "Today, we took time to thank the lord for all that he hath given us and sang praises unto his name.
30 We have feasted much upon the holy food, and drunk a fair share--more, for some of us" he said, pausing to give a pointed glance into the crowd.
31 Several of the more tipsy members giggled.
32 "But from whence cometh these gifts to mankind?
33 What hath man done in his short time to deserve such blessings?
34 Tonight, I have chosen to tell you the story of how Man came to be given the greatest blessing of all: Pasta.
35 And such a blessing it is...
36 Pasta is the sustainer of life, the pleaser of taste buds, the uplifter of souls.
37 The food that surpasses all others--"
38 "EVEN CHOCOLATE?" someone shouted shrilly.
39 All eyes turned with shock to the back row to search for the source of the unexpected interruption.
40 And lo, they found that it was a young pirate wench in the back row.
41 And her name was Clarity.


I want your input. Seriously, I do. No matter how big or small your contribution--anything from typos to going at it with a big red pen and practically telling me to rewrite it as a science-fiction novel. We writers live for literary criticism :grin:
Bayes Theorum:
............................P(X|A) * P(A)
P(A|X) = -----------------------------------
...............P(X|A) * P(A) + P(X|~A) * P(~A)

If I have learnt anything, it is that life forms no logical patterns. It is haphazard and full of beauties which I try to catch as they fly by, for who knows whether any of them will ever return?
Margot Fonteyn

~*L'Nox ti notve*~
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Ham Nox on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:04 am

Chapter II - Heresy and Adventures

1 Clarity's face flushed marinara red with embarrassment as she realized that yes, she had just said that out loud.
2 No-Eyed Jim face scrunched up in dramaticized confusion.
3 "Wha? Who said that?"
4 "M-Me," Clarity managed to squeaked out,
5 She did not handle being the center of attention well.
6 "Me, eh? Well I'll be covered in pesto.. I could've sworn that I was hearing young Clarity's voice!
7 I 'spose my hearing's not what it used to be.
8 Anyway, Me, I don't think we've been properly introduced: I'm No-Eyed Jim," spoke No-Eyed Jim mirthfully, holding his hand out to empty air with an amused grin on his face.
9 Despite herself, Clarity let out a small giggle.
10 Satisfied that the girl was no longer too mortified to speak coherently, No-Eyed Jim's face grew more serious.
11 "Now, what was it that ye were saying?" He asked gently.
12 It appeared at that moment that Clarity had suddenly gained an intense interest in the material of her pirate boots, as her eyes lowered to the floor and began to examine them with absorbed focus.
13 A few seconds of silence passed as she gathered her thoughts and the courage to speak them.
14 "I-I asked if you truly meant that Pasta was better than Chocolate." She said breathlessly, unable to truly grasp what the words passing through her lips meant.
15 There was the sound of sharply inhaled breaths as the congregated Pastafari gasped at the scandal unfolding before them.
16 The silence lasted but a second before the crowd fell into tense whispering amongst themselves.
16 No-Eyed Jim was the only one to retain his composure.
17 "Now, now, everyone.. Her question is a valid one, and deserves to be addressed with respect.
18 Clarity, to answer your question, I do in fact hold Pasta to be greater than Chocolate.
19 While Chocolate is quite delicious, it is not in any way divine.
20 Nor does it fill the stomach and give nutrition to the body, as does a good, diverse dish of Pasta.
21 Man cannot live on chocolate alone."
22 The crowd nodded appreciatively at this statement, seeing that it was good and required no further argument.
23 Clarity shook her head, not quite so convinced.
24 "If the reasoning were so, then should not Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches be just as holy, if not more?
25 A Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich provides balanced nutrition in three major areas--Protein, Carbohydrates, and Fruit.
26 A plate of Spaghetti, on the other hand, is comprised mainly of straight carbohydrates, with the only other nutrition coming from whatever you decide to pour on top, or eat on the side.
27 Such a high carb diet is almost inadvisable for most men, and downright impossible for some.
28 Man cannot live on Pasta alone either," she concluded with a wavering voice.
29 'Wherefore are such blasphemous things coming forth from my mouth, unbid?" she thought incredulously.
30 No-Eyed Jim appeared thoughtful, though it was hard to tell for sure seeing as his eyes were covered and all.
31 "Is it fair for me to ask ye, then, if you do not hold Chocolate to be above Pasta?" he questioned lightly in return.
32 Clarity did turn quite pale, for she had not thought out her heretical thoughts quite so far as this.
33 "I--I do not know."
34 And she did not know, so she closed her eyes and searched within herself for an answer.
35 Was not chocolate quite heavenly?
36 Was chocolate not universally liked, but for a few weird freaks?
37 (No offense intended to said weird freaks.
38 Everyone is entitled to their opinion.)
39 Did she not most days desire its sweet taste more than Pasta?
40 Could such sweetness be described as anything less than divine?
41 She knew her answer, though it pained her greatly to know it herself.
42 Clarity opened her eyes and spoke,
43 "Yes. I suppose I do,"
44 Confused tears ran down her face as she was forced to wonder where the false idol in her heart left her belief in the Sauced One.
45 She was no heretic; Her faith had always been true and pure.
46 But if the most Holy Meal, crafted in His image with His blessing, was not therefore the most delectable of dishes, how may it be that He was the greatest of all things?
47 She could not bear to hold the contradiction within herself.
48 "I apologize for the interruption. Please, continue with your story," she said meekly
49 Clarity plopped back onto the ground, and prayed fervently that No-Eyed Jim would simply proceed as she asked, and not press the matter further.
50 Her prayer was almost answered, for No-Eyed Jim did continue on with his story, but only after procuring a promise that she stay after for a short time to speak with him.
51 Clarity curled into as small and unnoticeable a ball as she could while No-Eyed Jim told his story.
52 She was not sure what she believed anymore.
53 She was so absorbed in her own thoughts that she could not hear the story.
54 Her discomfort and unease continued to grow as the night progressed.
55 Finally, Jim concluded the story and then everyone began to head home.
56 Clarity contemplated sneaking out amongst their number, but decided against it.
57 No-Eyed Jim had a knack for finding those people who did not want to be found.
58 Reluctantly, she meandered her way toward the blind man, who was warming his hands by the remains of the fire with a serene smile playing across on his face.
59 Clarity let out a small, conspicuous cough to make her presence known.
60 No-Eyed Jim carried on his activity blissfully, showing no indication that he had heard her.
61 She coughed again, louder this time, and still he did not respond, though she was sure that he had heard her.
62 "*Cough* This is the part where *Cough Cough* you say something deep and meaningful *cough* that makes me realize where I am *cough* wrong *Cough Cough Cough*," she hinted.
63 To this, No-Eyed Jim let out a great bellowing laugh.
64 "I think ye may be over-estimatin' me, child," he shook his head.
65 "I do not have all the answers.
66 If I did, I'd have to think that I knew everything.
67 Only a**holes think that way, and Pastafarians are not a**holes.
68 If this is where your heart lies, then who am I to tell you that you are wrong?"
69 "I don't want to be right in this!" Clarity cried in despair.
70 Clarity knelt to the ground to sit beside No-Eyed Jim, and her voice took on a pleading tone.
71 "I want everything to make sense, and for all the things I know to be true to fit together!
72 But I don't... I don't know what's true anymore."
73 Clarity’s face fell into her open palms.
74 "I don't know what to do," she whispered.
75 No-Eyed Jim extended his arm to give the distressed girl a comforting (if slightly awkward) pat on the back, then drew his arm back, seeming to think better of it.
76 "You know, where I come from," he spoke casually, "It is not unusual for a follower to make a pilgrimage to Bobby Mountain now and again to seek spiritual truth and enlightenment."
77 Clarity looked at him questioningly, her curiosity piqued.
78 "Not something I'd usually suggest, especially for someone who is not as well… /prepared/ for it.”
79 Somewhere deep inside of her, something fierce and powerful stirred at the mention of this perilous journey.
80 Though Jim did not see it, Clarity's face had broken into a fierce, reckless smile.
81 "But, in this case, I think it might be very beneficial for you to try.
82 So, are you up for a road trip?"
83 "Aye," she spoke, with noticeably less fear than just a few seconds before.
84 "A Piratess is always ready for an adventure!"

((Lines 66-68 Quoted from the Gospel of the FSM, may be slightly paraphrased as I didn't have the book on me as I was writing. The swearing is all Bobby though, BLAME HIM NOT ME!!! He didn't even bother with censoring.))
Bayes Theorum:
............................P(X|A) * P(A)
P(A|X) = -----------------------------------
...............P(X|A) * P(A) + P(X|~A) * P(~A)

If I have learnt anything, it is that life forms no logical patterns. It is haphazard and full of beauties which I try to catch as they fly by, for who knows whether any of them will ever return?
Margot Fonteyn

~*L'Nox ti notve*~
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Iamtoo on Thu Jan 28, 2010 7:45 pm

Ham Nox wrote:The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Chocolate

this book is intended to go DEEP into the very core of things and make the reader question everything they think is true.

Chapter I - Blind Men and Interruptions

1 In the time before the internet, but not before the invention of chocolate,
2 (For there would be no book of chocolate in a time period where chocolate did not exist or was not just about to be invented)
3 There lived a great spiritual leader among the Pastafari known as No-Eyed Jim.
4 He was well-loved by the people for his wisdom, which he had plenty of time to gather as a blind man paid on disability, and didn't have to work.
5 And he was indeed very wise, especially for someone who had managed to lose not just one, but BOTH of his eyes.
6 He was strong-willed, well-disciplined, and a very powerful speaker, and it came to be that his word was treated as authoritative in all walks of life.
7 Under Jim's wise words of guidance, the Pastafarian people thrived.
8 They reaped of the most delectable pasta-making grains that the land could offer.
9 They drank of the best-brewed draughts in the land.
10 The most beautimous strippers traveled from all over the world to perform for the budding young pirate men of the faith who, according to ancient myth and local gossip, were quite well endowed.
11 And though the Pastafari worked hard for all they had, they played even harder.
12 In those days, it was a terrible tragedy indeed to miss a Pastiesta, or a Bar Pastah,
13 For in those days a good party was never great until the Pastafarians arrived!
14 One night, the followers of the Great Noodley One gather about the water-boiling fire after a particularly wonderful day of celebration to hear the words of No-Eyed Jim.
15 Though the time for his story telling neared, No-Eyed Jim was nowhere to be found.
16 This did not upset the people, for they knew that he preffered to make a dramatic entrance
17 As boisterous laughter and shantying died down and gave way to the still silence of the night, the Pastafari waited with bated breath and keened senses for his entrance.
18 The dramatic tension of the crowd slowly began to edge into nervous panic.
19 Just as everyone began to wonder if a search party was in order, the fire before them suddenly flared high and bright, startling many a newcomer and burning more than a few unwisely positioned buttocks.
20 As watchers' eyes adjusted to the brightness of the fire, a dark figure could be seen on the other side of the flames.
21 And just as suddenly as it had flared, the fire died down to a soft glow of embers.
22 The soft glow lightly illuminated the deeply scarred face of the mysterious figure, allowing for it to be recognized by the crowd.
23 Of course, it was No-Eyed Jim.
24 He stood tall and proud, in rich gold and burgundy regalia.
25 He sported a custom double eyepatch over his unseen and unseeing eyes, but he seemed to look straight into the souls of the crowdmembers as they gazed upon him.
26 "Welcome, all ye faithful," He spoke.
27 Though his voice was barely above a whisper, his words were heard by all.
28 Excepting a few low groans from the fools struggling to sit on their sore butts, the crowd was silent in hungry anticipation of the night's speech.
29 "Today, we took time to thank the lord for all that he hath given us and sang praises unto his name.
30 We have feasted much upon the holy food, and drunk a fair share--more, for some of us" he said, pausing to give a pointed glance into the crowd.
31 Several of the more tipsy members giggled.
32 "But from whence cometh these gifts to mankind?
33 What hath man done in his short time to deserve such blessings?
34 Tonight, I have chosen to tell you the story of how Man came to be given the greatest blessing of all: Pasta.
35 And such a blessing it is...
36 Pasta is the sustainer of life, the pleaser of taste buds, the uplifter of souls.
37 The food that surpasses all others--"
38 "EVEN CHOCOLATE?" someone shouted shrilly.
39 All eyes turned with shock to the back row to search for the source of the unexpected interruption.
40 And lo, they found that it was a young pirate wench in the back row.
41 And her name was Clarity.


I want your input. Seriously, I do. No matter how big or small your contribution--anything from typos to going at it with a big red pen and practically telling me to rewrite it as a science-fiction novel. We writers live for literary criticism :grin:


The first thing you need to ask yourself is: who do you want to read your book?

If you want readers to question the truth of everything then I guess the first things you want to make people question are all the words in bold. I suggest replacing or explaining them instead of just using them. Here are my suggestions:
stuff we write, thoughts and feelings, the ability to make others feel stupid, productive activities, fun you can not have (anymore), the ability to have people do things you can not or won't do yourself, the ability to make other people want to do what you can not or won't do yourself, things you get for doing stuff others can not or won't do, sexual attraction and fantasy, non-productive activities, fun you did not have, fun, the Great Noodley One, you, fun you're not having, lord, important things,things you get for free, things you get for free that make you feel better, pasta, chocolate,obscurity.
You could also change definitions halfway. That should suffice to confuse people. fiction to fact, thoughts to reality, and so on.

You could just introduce the characters in your first chapter, let them demonstrate their wisdom and introduce concepts later on before you shock your readers by exposing Jim as a not so blind beggar who secretly eats chocolate and likes ordering/manipulating people, the Great Noodley one as unresponsive to prayer and all the concepts as false/relative/uncertain. With an introduction this early Clarity looks like the wise one and there is no shock and no fun. Maybe Clarity saying anti-pasta instead of chocolate would be more effective. Giving Clarity another name (Obscurity) could also help.

A book of chocolate can describe a period before the invention of chocolate. Just avoid mentioning the book of chocolate was already in the top drawer in many hotel rooms by then. Or just ignore the inconsistencies and have Jim abuse a copy of the book of chocolate for his own benefits.

Of course it's your book and I am probably not your target audience since I'm unable to locate truth. Since there is no truth in what I said but only opinion, feel free to dismiss my comments as a failed attempt to inspire you.
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Ham Nox on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:31 pm

Iamtoo wrote:The first thing you need to ask yourself is: who do you want to read your book?

If you want readers to question the truth of everything then I guess the first things you want to make people question are all the words in bold.

Hmm. Maybe not quite what I meant... I'm writing the story of a heretic's journey to find truth. I just have hopes it'll strike a chord with anyone who has ever doubted the faith <3

Iamtoo wrote:I suggest replacing or explaining them instead of just using them. Here are my suggestions:

I'm a little confused by what you mean.. What's wrong with them exactly? And what are you going for with the changes?

Iamtoo wrote:You could just introduce the characters in your first chapter, let them demonstrate their wisdom and introduce concepts later on before you shock your readers by exposing Jim as a not so blind beggar who secretly eats chocolate and likes ordering/manipulating people, the Great Noodley one as unresponsive to prayer and all the concepts as false/relative/uncertain.

Funny.. I'd originally intended for Jim to be a total hypocrite when I first thought of him, and the Pastafarian people mindless sheep. But going that route, I would've wound up writing it as a tragedy where her faith in the FSM and humanity breaks down completely.

Iamtoo wrote:With an introduction this early Clarity looks like the wise one and there is no shock and no fun. Maybe Clarity saying anti-pasta instead of chocolate would be more effective.

Well, I don't know what to say.. That's just not my story. The Divine Flavour that is Chocolate is the only reason that I ever wanted to write it. It was inspired by a topic on a Facebook Church of the FSM group that suggested merging IPUism with FSMism. One of the arguments for it was that a chocolate fountain could be arranged for under the IPU's juristiction of heaven.

Iamtoo wrote:Giving Clarity another name (Obscurity) could also help.

You're right, the good little author in me fought the name Clarity so hard cuz it just doesn't make sense.. It was an indulgence--Clarity is my fake name. Whenever I make up a fake account on something, I always use the name Clarity ---------.

Iamtoo wrote:A book of chocolate can describe a period before the invention of chocolate. Just avoid mentioning the book of chocolate was already in the top drawer in many hotel rooms by then. Or just ignore the inconsistencies and have Jim abuse a copy of the book of chocolate for his own benefits.

Actually, THIS is the Book of Chocolate. It is a story of a girl who loved Chocolate.

Iamtoo wrote:Of course it's your book and I am probably not your target audience since I'm unable to locate truth. Since there is no truth in what I said but only opinion, feel free to dismiss my comments as a failed attempt to inspire you.

Nah, I still feel inspired. ish. Nice to have someone say something about the content of my book instead of just my grammar and punctuation :grin:
Bayes Theorum:
............................P(X|A) * P(A)
P(A|X) = -----------------------------------
...............P(X|A) * P(A) + P(X|~A) * P(~A)

If I have learnt anything, it is that life forms no logical patterns. It is haphazard and full of beauties which I try to catch as they fly by, for who knows whether any of them will ever return?
Margot Fonteyn

~*L'Nox ti notve*~
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Qwertyuiopasd on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:35 pm

I was wondering how you'd respond to your post. My reaction is very similar.

I for one, really like Jim. I think he's a very good example of what a Pastafarian clergyman should be. Smart, wise, but not full of himself, well aware that there is not one ultimate truth. Also, the right amount of dramatic flair. :grin:

However, Obscurity may be a better name than Clarity. But what do I know? I've got Pete and Frequently over here. XD
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Edd on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:59 pm

Ham Nox wrote:Nice to have someone say something about the content of my book instead of just my grammar and punctuation :grin:

Which is hard to do, at least for me. Especially with an unfinished product. One really needs to know the direction an author intends on going, if not the ultimate goal, otherwise, the temptation to insert one's own agenda is great.
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Iamtoo on Thu Jan 28, 2010 9:34 pm

Ham Nox wrote:
Iamtoo wrote:I suggest replacing or explaining them instead of just using them. Here are my suggestions:

I'm a little confused by what you mean.. What's wrong with them exactly? And what are you going for with the changes?


The bold words leave room for interpretation if you just drop them in the way you did. It allows people to choose definitions for them that you didn't intend. They will do that and misunderstand what you mean. The changes serve to reduce that potential problem.

Reality is not the issue, that's probably not what you want readers to question. The bold words are ideas you probably do want people to question. In order to do that you need to make readers understand what you mean.

Here's an example where your definitions and mine don't work well together:
12 In those days, it was a terrible tragedy indeed to miss a Pastiesta, or a Bar Pastah,
For me missing an event means being somewhere else. I don't appreciate your tragedy
If instead you would say
12 In those days, if you found out a Pastiesta, or Bar Pastah was held in your absence, the fun you missed out on was buried in a ceremony that cost a years pay.
That would make me appreciate the tragedy of missing out on an occasion to have fun.
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Ham Nox on Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:03 pm

Iamtoo wrote:Here's an example where your definitions and mine don't work well together:
12 In those days, it was a terrible tragedy indeed to miss a Pastiesta, or a Bar Pastah,
For me missing an event means being somewhere else. I don't appreciate your tragedy
If instead you would say
12 In those days, if you found out a Pastiesta, or Bar Pastah was held in your absence, the fun you missed out on was buried in a ceremony that cost a years pay.
That would make me appreciate the tragedy of missing out on an occasion to have fun.


I dunno, that statement seems more confusing to me... It jumps straight from a party to holding a burial ceremony and then saying that the ceremony would cost a lot... There's a lot of extrapolation and it's a bit hard to see the connection at first.
I was thinking would be a more direct step in the thought process to say that fun lost by not going to the party would be mourned. (Which is what I was attempting to convey by saying it was a tragedy to miss it.)

Besides.. An ample amount of ambiguity is essential in a good holy book :haha:
Bayes Theorum:
............................P(X|A) * P(A)
P(A|X) = -----------------------------------
...............P(X|A) * P(A) + P(X|~A) * P(~A)

If I have learnt anything, it is that life forms no logical patterns. It is haphazard and full of beauties which I try to catch as they fly by, for who knows whether any of them will ever return?
Margot Fonteyn

~*L'Nox ti notve*~
User avatar
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Ham Nox on Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:04 pm

Chapter III - Lace and Drunken Monkeys

1 It was a long way to Bobby Mountain from her bustling port-side town, but No-Eyed Jim had confidence in her ability to make the journey.
2 He spent many an hour with her, helping her research the writings of ancient Pastaleogians and teaching her the skills she needed to survive in the harsh land environment.
3 Clarity couldn't understand why he would go to such great lengths to help her prepare for her journey to find her faith, but she accepted the aid with graceful appreciation anyways.
4 After much exacting instruction and hard work to prepare, Jim deemed her ready to go on her journey.
5 "All right, does ye have everything ye needs?" asked Clarity's mother.
6 "Yes, I have everything," Clarity responded, resisting the urge to roll her eyes.
7 "Clean Regalia is packed?"
8 "Aye."
9 "Down Captain's coat?"
10 "Aye."
11 "Dehydrated Pasta and other cooking stuffs?"
12 "Aye."
13 "First Aid Kit?"
14 "Aye."
15 "Ninja Repellent?"
16 "Aye."
17 "Cell phone?"
18 Clarity sighed impatiently, "Mom, cell-phones haven't even been invented yet."
19 "Oh, right.. You know, we can always postpone the trip until the technology advances a bit mo--"
20 "Tristen, stop babying the girl," Clarity's father stepped in, hands held behind his back.
21 "She's near a grown wench now,"
22 Clarity beamed at the acknowledgement of her maturity, deserved or not.
23 Her father returned the smile, and continued his speech.
24 "If ye weren't, you know we'd never have considered letting you out o' our sights fer a heartbeat, an took a lot of persuadin' as it were on Ol' Jim's part to get us to agree."
25 "Which brings me to an important point..
26 I have somethin' to give ye before ya leave."
27 Clarity's father brought one hand forth and opened it to reveal something small, black and... lacy.
28 "Oh no. Oh no, no, no, no, no..." She protested, absolutely mortified.
29 "You never know when you're going to need something REALLY nice to wear," he said suggestively.
30 Clarity hid the bright red skin of her face in her hands.
31 "You can't be serious! She cried, "I can't bring THAT!"
32 "Honey, love can strike anyone, anywhere, and at any moment.
33 I want you be prepared--"
34 Clarity had a terrible inkling of what was hiding in her father's other hand, and threw her hands away from her face to grab her traveling pack before he could give any other thoughtful going away presents.
35 "OKAY!! I REALLY ought to get going...
36 I'll send a homing-parrot or something soon, kay?" She exclaimed, running out the door before her parents could protest.
37 Once a respectable distance into her journey, Clarity collapsed against a tree-trunk and reached into her bag for her rum bottle.
38 Before she could take a swig, a small monkey dropped down from the tree above and snatched it from her.
39 "HEY! That's mine!" She shouted, reaching out to grab the bottle back.
40 The monkey jumped back, out of her reach, and went on to imitate her shout in mocking screeching sounds.
41 The monkey took a deep swig from the bottle.
42 She stared, livid, at the unabashed monkey sloshing down her precious rum.
43 "Oh, it's ON!!" she shouted, and leapt at the monkey.
44 With quick-thinking agility, it evaded her grasp again.
44 Clarity pursued the monkey, and it continued to drink deeply from the bottle as it ran from her.
45 When the bottle was finished, and Clarity lost sight of the monkey as it stole up into the treetops.
46 'Well that's just lovely.' She thought with frustration.
47 She plopped down on the ground and spared herself a moment to fume.
48 With startling suddenness, something huge and fuzzy appeared to take over her whole field of vision.
49 Focusing on the object, she realized that it wasn't huge and fuzzy--it was just really, really close to her face.
50 And it was her rum bottle.
51 She looked up, seeing the monkey looking down at her with a sorry pout on its face.
52 "Oh gee, thanks." She said sarcastically, taking back her empty bottle.
53 The monkey grinned happily at her acceptance of the peace offering and jumped down into her lap.
54 Or it tried to, at least.
55 Its balance was a little off from drinking all of Clarity's rum, and it more fell out of the tree than jumped.
56 Clarity stifled her urge to laugh.
57 The monkey hiccuped, and wrapped its arms around her neck with drunken over-affection.
58 "You know, you're sort of adorable when you're drunk." Clarity admitted grudgingly, fighting hard to stay pissed the ridiculous little creature.
59 She was failing miserably at it.
60 "I think I'll name you Pepe.
61 Having you around will add an interesting aspect to this mission, I am sure, much as adding a dash of seasoning may greatly enhance a plate of pasta."
62 Her face grew solemn as she remembered what that mission was.
63 'I best be on my way again,' she thought, carrying the drunk monkey in her arms as she ventured back to the tree to get her stuff.
Bayes Theorum:
............................P(X|A) * P(A)
P(A|X) = -----------------------------------
...............P(X|A) * P(A) + P(X|~A) * P(~A)

If I have learnt anything, it is that life forms no logical patterns. It is haphazard and full of beauties which I try to catch as they fly by, for who knows whether any of them will ever return?
Margot Fonteyn

~*L'Nox ti notve*~
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Iamtoo on Fri Jan 29, 2010 9:02 am

Ham Nox wrote:
Iamtoo wrote:Here's an example where your definitions and mine don't work well together:
12 In those days, it was a terrible tragedy indeed to miss a Pastiesta, or a Bar Pastah,
For me missing an event means being somewhere else. I don't appreciate your tragedy
If instead you would say
12 In those days, if you found out a Pastiesta, or Bar Pastah was held in your absence, the fun you missed out on was buried in a ceremony that cost a years pay.
That would make me appreciate the tragedy of missing out on an occasion to have fun.


I dunno, that statement seems more confusing to me... It jumps straight from a party to holding a burial ceremony and then saying that the ceremony would cost a lot... There's a lot of extrapolation and it's a bit hard to see the connection at first.


No less hard than finding a connection between finding out you could have had fun in the past and feeling sad about that fact in the present, or losing fun you never had or mourning fun you never had.

Your confusion is a complement, because that means you realize you don't understand and start thinking and questioning which is kind of, or exactly what you wanted to see in your readers. I admit the burial ceremony that costs a lot is not a good substitute for tragedy, mourning or loss. There should be a better example of something real that makes you feel bad. Maybe the bank could just confiscate a years pay if you fail to maximize your fun.

Ham Nox wrote:I was thinking would be a more direct step in the thought process to say that fun lost by not going to the party would be mourned. (Which is what I was attempting to convey by saying it was a tragedy to miss it.)


Losing fun you never had or mourning fun you never had still doesn't ring a bell for me. Also these are not very interesting ideas but quite common. Doesn't force me to think about or question anything, fails to set a mood, fails to explain anything before or after it, forces me to suggest a shorter version of your book by deleting number 12 resulting in a relative increase in Clarity. Same for 2,spiritual in 3, for his wisdom which ... gather in 4, 10 (I get the FSM reference, but don't see a function), 28, 30 holy, 32, 33.

If you want your reader to learn about the FSM than you should not use lord and Great Noodley one or pasta without explaining a bit more. It will discourage non-pastifarian readers. For them reading a chapter of your book would be similar to viewing a single episode of lost. :barf: :shocked:

Ham Nox wrote:Besides.. An ample amount of ambiguity is essential in a good holy book :haha:


If you go for ambiguity I suggest the following:
12 In those days, it was a terrible tragedy indeed to miss a Pastiesta, or a Bar Pastah. The bank would confiscate a years pay for failure to maximize your fun, unless you could prove you had at least a ton of fun elsewhere.

The purpose would still be to make readers think and question not so real (impractical) concepts of fun, tragedy and absence by giving them real (practical) consequences. I doubt very much it will work because it's more likely to be read as "if you miss an appointment you will be fined" or a (failed) attempt at humor. At least the ambiguity is there because it's no longer evident that missing a Pastiesta is a tragedy because you might have had a ton of fun elsewhere. I think it's better if to either go for ambiguity or making people think and question. Either one can be entertaining. Both will be distracting

The criticism gets kind of destructive after this, so skip if you can't take it (remember it's only true as my opinion not as a fact and opinions can change). I can pretty much guaranty no fun will be had by reading on.

Can you tell me what I am supposed think about and question or what's ambiguous about:
In chapter 1 wise people can be wrong? what's better chocolate or pasta?
In chapter 2 it's no fun being different? don't hide your knowledge? wisdom comes with respect?
In chapter 3 getting drunk is worth stealing? being drunk can make you adorable? stealing helps to make friends?

I don't get the pasta-chocolate controversy. Blasphemy in a parody religion? A parody of a parody religion. It's like looking in the mirror and see my self looking at my self, looking at my self, .... Sure, it makes me think for a millisecond or two, but then I just stop and accept that I don't get it.

All in all a lot of words that do lead to questions, but you won't make your readers wonder about their beliefs but about your message (at best), your writing ability (if your reader is a critic)), or (worst case scenario) why they are reading your stories. Maybe there is a lot of entertainment value in your chapters, but I'm not able to find any in chapter one and just a little in chapter two and 3. I am not a big reader but if TV shows and movies are an indication entertainment comes from
tension I see the attempts but there is no tension when you know whats coming e.g. one eyed Jim's arrival in Ch1 or when nothing important is at stake e.g. a bottle of rum in chapter 3.
plot twists Present and accounted for in 2 and 3. Chapter one is more of a blog with the facts in chronological order.
humor Can't find it. Maybe your humor is a variety unknown to me. There are so many varieties. Please pick varieties of humor you reader will recognize and make it obvious.
identification/recognition I could identify with Clarity or Jim if I could understand their actions You probably want me to feel a bit of what Clarity feels but it's just not happening. Maybe more realism/background would help. In a simpler story such as a roadrunner cartoon less background is needed. There I understand the problems and desires. Your story needs more introduction. Tell me why chocolate is so bad, why nobody feels like Clarity, why ...
emotion That sort of depends on the other ingredients especially recognition/identification.
originality I see your originality in the chocolate-pasta controversy. More originality is always better as long as readers still understand your stories.
story lines and arcs Is it just the Clarity likes chocolate arc? Or am I missing something and do the chapters have a story as well. Your story reads like Clarity's diary. Don't get me wrong, diaries can make for an interesting read, but you have many more options with your title.
formula's You could exploit the FSM formula a lot more or create a chocolate versus pasta formula.
surprise/shock Just let something unexpected happen. I don't mean create plot twists, I covered that above. Jim telling a joke would be a surprise. A new character could be a surprise. Writing what makes no sense could also be a surprise.

I'm sure the internet is full with tricks and methods used by creative writers. I'm not a creative writer, so don't trust me. It's strange to realize that I used all of the techniques I mentioned to get my science papers published.
Humans are strange beings, you can catch monkeys with them.
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Qwertyuiopasd on Fri Jan 29, 2010 10:49 am

Iamtoo wrote:Your confusion is a complement, because that means you realize you don't understand and start thinking and questioning which is kind of, or exactly what you wanted to see in your readers.


There's a difference between making a person think, and communicating ineffectively. True, if you communicate ineffectively, the audience will probably have to think more, but if they truly don't get it, they probably will just skip over it or just ignore the whole thing.

She's creating her own setting, which needs to be fairly straightforward, and should have those elements of certainty, because what ends up happening is Clarity bringing up questions, like about chocolate.

Oh, heres's a great example. The 95 Theses. They were very straightforward and plain, but they still made people think about what was going on. Every single word in the story doesn't have to be confusing, or add elements of uncertainty, to have the ultimate effect of questioning religion, or whatever. Like I said, she needs to create a status quo, and then break it down.

However, what I suspect will happen, or what I would do, is have her, and perhaps others, come to the realization that the status is not quo. What I mean is, since there isn't that many set rules, practices, dogma, whatever, in Pastafarianism, if Clarity asks these "blasphemous" questions, she'll find the proper Pastafarian response is "Oh yeah, good point."


Also, that cyan is hell to read without highlighting it, though that may simply be my background template, and that may be your intent. If so, I disagree with the reasons, since you already put in a disclaimer saying the rest was a bit more harsh.

Also I just don't agree with most of it.

tension I see the attempts but there is no tension when you know whats coming e.g. one eyed Jim's arrival in Ch1 or when nothing important is at stake e.g. a bottle of rum in chapter 3.
plot twists Plot twists are good, but need to be there to serve a point, and probably don't belong in exposition anyway. We seem to be in agreement here.
humor Dunno what you mean. I find this plenty humourous. Perhaps not laugh out loud, but her parents with the list of things to remember is funny, the monkey is funny (gotta have a monkey), and just the main premise, with this girl who is like "but chocolate is amazing" (because I know plenty of girls like that. :wink: ). Again, not laugh out loud, but it's certainly on par with the narratives in scripture already.
identification/recognition It sounds like you've never brought up something in class, or in some public arena, only to be proven wrong, or at least not entirely correct. I certainly identify with Jim, because so far he seems to be a lot of what I'd like to be as a Pastafarian, and I don't see much trouble with Clarity. Another note is that identification isn't as important in religious texts. I mean, most Christians probably don't identify with Jesus, Moses, or most people in the bible. They're there to either be good examples, or be bad examples.
emotion Again, religious text. It could be entirely allegorical/educational. That being said, there's certainly time for more emotional tension.
originality I don't see how this is unoriginal at all. Not that it sounds like you do, but your wording is strange.
story lines and arcs The story line is her going on this adventure. So far, it actually looks like it could follow the Epic Hero Cycle.
formula's Not sure what you mean by this at all.
surprise/shock I don't see what you mean by this either. You say adding a new character might be a surprise, but she just did that with the monkey. Also, writing things that make no sense, as stated above, I'm not sure is really the right idea, unless done very carefully i.e. a character who only speaks in gibberish, but then that's just another quirk.


Sorry if I seem a bit argumentative or anything. I just see the large, mostly critical (not a bad thing) posts, and not much other feedback, and since I don't agree with most of your criticism, I feel I should rebut. Sort of playing the Devil's Advocate, I think. I might be doing it wrong though. Oh well. :roll:
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Iamtoo on Fri Jan 29, 2010 6:32 pm

Here is the result of editing the first chapter to
-Make the not so obvious more obvious
-Remove words/sentences that have no purpose but to distract from what is said elsewhere
-Use more similar words to say similar things

Chapter I - Blind Men and Interruptions

1 In the time before the internet, but not before the invention of chocolate,
2 There lived a charismatic leader among the Pastafari known as No-Eyed Jim.
3 He was well-loved by the people for his ability to make people see truth, which he had for time as a blind man paid on disability.
4 And he was indeed a man of vision, especially for someone who had managed to lose not just one, but BOTH of his eyes.
5 He was strong-willed, well-disciplined, and a very persuasive speaker, and it came to be that his word was treated as truth in all walks of life.
6 Under Jim's leadership, the Pastafarian people thrived.
7 They grew the most delectable pasta-making grains that any land could offer.
8 They brewed the best draughts.
9 The most attractive strippers from all over the world strived to perform for the budding young pirate men and wenches.
10 And though the Pastafari worked hard for all they had, they partied even harder.
11 In those days, a good party was never great until the Pastafarians arrived!
12 One night, those of the pasta persuasion gather about the water-boiling fire after another great party to hear the words of No-Eyed Jim.
13 Though the time for his story telling neared, No-Eyed Jim was nowhere to be found.
14 Voices died down and gave way to the still silence of the night, as the Pastafari waited for his entrance with bated breath.
15 The dramatic tension of the crowd slowly began to edge into nervous panic.
16 Just as everyone began to wonder if a search party was in order, the fire before them suddenly flared high and bright, startling many and burning more than a few that were unwisely positioned.
17 As watchers' eyes adjusted to the brightness of the fire, a dark figure could be seen on the other side of the flames.
18 And just as suddenly as it had flared, the fire died down to a soft glow of embers.
19 The soft glow lightly illuminated the deeply scarred face of the mysterious figure, allowing for it to be recognized by the crowd.
20 Of course, it was No-Eyed Jim.
21 He stood tall and proud, in rich gold and burgundy regalia.
22 He sported a custom double eyepatch over his absent eyes, but he seemed to look straight into the souls of the crowdmembers as they gazed upon him.
23 "Welcome, all ye pastafarians," He spoke.
24 Though his voice was barely above a whisper, his words were heard by all.
25 Excepting a few low groans from the fools struggling to sit on their sore butts, the crowd was silent in hungry anticipation of the night's speech.
26 "Today, we took time to thank the Flying Spaghetti Monster for all that he hath given us and sang praises unto his name.
27 We have feasted much upon the pasta, and drunk a fair share, some of us more" he said, pausing to give a pointed glance into the crowd.
28 Some of those who drank more than a fair share giggled.
29 "Tonight, I have chosen to tell you the story of how Man came to be given the greatest blessing of all: Pasta.
30 And such a blessing it is...
31 Pasta is the sustainer of life, the pleaser of taste buds, the uplifter of souls.
32 The food that surpasses all others--"
33 "EVEN CHOCOLATE?" someone shouted shrilly.
34 All eyes turned with shock to the back row to search for the source of the unexpected interruption.
35 And lo, they found that it was a young pirate wench in the back row.
36 And her name was Obscurity.


I possibly misread the original intention or even did what Edd was afraid of and inserted my own. All I can say about that is: I did not do it on purpose. Truth coming from obscurity instead of the charismatic leader alone would it a worthwhile read for me. It just isn't that obvious if the truth comes from clarity instead of a spiritual leader.
Humans are strange beings, you can catch monkeys with them.
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Re: The Book of Chocolate: A story of secrets, heresy and Cho...

Postby Ham Nox on Fri Jan 29, 2010 6:58 pm

Iamtoo wrote:Here is the result of editing the first chapter to
-Make the not so obvious more obvious
-Remove words/sentences that have no purpose but to distract from what is said elsewhere
-Use more similar words to say similar things

I possibly misread the original intention or even did what Edd was afraid of and inserted my own. All I can say about that is: I did not do it on purpose. Truth coming from obscurity instead of the charismatic leader alone would it a worthwhile read for me. It just isn't that obvious if the truth comes from clarity instead of a spiritual leader


No, that's actually a pretty good edit. A few minor things I might change back, but nicely done :D
I myself was a little afraid that I was attempting too much non-stop humor, and detracting from the story itself. And I have a tendency to force myself to use a lot of synonyms so I don't get too repetitive. Good chance I could have been overdoing it.

The name Clarity was not meant to have any symbolic meaning whatsoever in this story, but I think I will have to change it just because it looks like it's supposed to have one. I don't know about using Obscurity, though... Kind of a weird name to give a kid, and it would run a little contrary to the way I'm planning to end the story.

I may have to choose a name of a pasta. Or I could name her after Theobromine :lol: (Chemistry... It's the addictive component of Chocolate, related to caffeine.)
... Or Anne. Yeah, I like Anne :grin: [/tangent]

If it's alright, I'm gonna file away your edit to work in once I've actually got a good chunk of story. Gotta know where I'm going before I start changing everything, ya know?
Bayes Theorum:
............................P(X|A) * P(A)
P(A|X) = -----------------------------------
...............P(X|A) * P(A) + P(X|~A) * P(~A)

If I have learnt anything, it is that life forms no logical patterns. It is haphazard and full of beauties which I try to catch as they fly by, for who knows whether any of them will ever return?
Margot Fonteyn

~*L'Nox ti notve*~
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