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About Literature / Hobbyist Core Member Leslie Mertz aka Lord of Cakes39/Female/United States Groups :iconthe-bards-college: The-Bards-College
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Sabre of Dusk: Chapter One by The-SelfMade-Man

I'm sorry this critique was so long in coming. Obviously, this isn't the first story you've ever written and you're quite the wordsmith...

Lady Marie Gawadunen by Whisper292

I have never seen any of your art work before outside of your tarot, screenshots and writing, so this is a real treat. You did an excel...

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Lesliewifeofbath
Leslie Mertz aka Lord of Cakes
Artist | Hobbyist | Literature
United States
Social Worker by day and writer by night.

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So What's Up, Buttercup?

Sat Aug 8, 2015, 9:53 PM
So my family made it in one piece.

Slowly, I've been putting things together. Looking for a job, getting Max situated, getting unpacked, trying to understand this crazy beautiful city...you know, all the things that go with moving.

Before I left, I started writing for the Cracked Crown Series and as much as I want to get back into gaming and writing, I'm just too tuckered out. Also, there's a part of me that's kind of afraid that I'll get swept up into other things like supporting my family, entertaining my child, etc and move away from my very favorite hobby and one of my favorite non-places in world: dA.  It scares me, but it might just be a fact of life.

Anyway, I'm not going pressure myself or worry--as that does little good.  Here's a gift from our travels: Canon Beach.

Canon Beach by Lesliewifeofbath


Skin by SimplySilent

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Sabre of Dusk: Chapter One by The-SelfMade-Man
I'm sorry this critique was so long in coming.

Obviously, this isn't the first story you've ever written and you're quite the wordsmith, so speaking about punctuation and grammatical errors is unnecessary which leaves us with the nitty-gritty: the story and style. Style we'll get to later, first let's talk about the story.

Your story--or at least the core message--is an argument against the hypocrisy of philanthropy, or at least forced philanthropy. You did an outstanding job of depicting your characters. For example: your protagonist, Martius Impius, is a kind of thugish, unattractive Sean Penn. He's fighting to help the poor and beleaguered Dunmer of Morrowind, in my opinion a worthy cause, but coming from Martius it sounds like setting fairy wings on fire. Martius is nasty, bitter, abusive and cowardly; simply put, he is utterly unlikeable. I wouldn't want to sit beside him and have a beer and talk politics because like Sean Penn, he could drive a bleeding heart like myself running and shrieking into arms of the Republican Party. His counterpart, Countess Maro, was painted similarly. You described her as thin lipped and pasty, but at least she stood her ground and was somewhat likeable.

The Breton Priestess, who you didn't name, was described as having a smooth and ivory face. Atria, who also questioned the purpose of the voyage and Martius's other failed ventures was painted as brave but frail victim of her brother's piggishness. Though in all fairness, I might have smacked her too if she had pointed out all my faults during a rather harrowing voyage.

The most interesting and certainly most palatable character was of course Wynandil, the sea captain. He is sexy, clear cut and stylishly brutal. He made is point succinctly and quickly, which now brings me to the style of writing in this story.

You are a master of setting the scene. The first three paragraphs of the story are magnificent. I can picture your character and scene with ease. But then you start to lose me. This story's only fault is that it is, at least in my opinion, too long-winded. I found myself losing interest in several spots. Your story length is 23 pages. I think you could have written a great story in ten, or maybe even fifteen at the very most.

In short, I think this is a good story and you are a great writer and I would certainly like to get to know Wynandil a bit better. Just work on paring down the next chapter a bit. Sometimes less is better, especially if you are going for impact.
So. I was at a training today called: Train the Trainer, in which each person had to stand up and give a speech. We could speak about anything so I chose to speak about the benefits of writing fan fiction. I thought I would share the speech with you. Also, much of this can be applied to Fan Art.

Opening Joke (had to share this): Why would anyone want to write Fan Fiction? Well, for me I needed a hobby. As I race toward middle age I figured I needed something to do in my spare time and fan fiction is far less expensive than getting liposuction or having an affair.

Benefit 1: Is writing something I really want to pursue? Writing fan fiction is a great lithmus test to see if you really want to pursue a career in writing. There is a saying that everyone has a book in them. Most people won't write that book because it takes a hell of a lot of commitment to write said book. You can easily start something, but the real question is: can you finish it? For me writing Nerevar Blue and the Courtesan Series was a test.  Could I commit to a multi-chapter story?  The answer was yes, but it took me a great deal of time and commitment to finish it.

Benefit 2: An easy start: Fan Fiction has the benefit of a universe already being in place. You know roughly where your character comes from and what kind of world he/she/it was born into. You know the political structure, culture and the underlying laws of the land. World building is difficult and time consuming, if you want an idea of how time consuming it is, check out Spaghetti-Mayhem 's journal entries called AWB: .AWB #1 - Rise of Bob Another person to ask would be own co-founder Whisper292 who has written a book called The Order of the White Guard.

Benefit 3: Support: If you can find a community of supportive writers, the experience is far nicer then say, just putting your stuff out there like I did when I first started. (Eh.) Also, you can give back to other writers who are starting their own journeys through feedback and encouragement. I can't tell you how much it means to get any sort of feedback when submitting your works to the public.

Benefit 4: It is a springboard to other projects: Upon finishing the Courtesan Series, I have branched out into other forms of writing. I am currently a part of a team of writers creating The Skyrim Romance Mod. skyrimromance.com/.

Benefit 5: Confidence:
That warm, fuzzy feeling you get when you see that you have created somethinig out of your own mind. Yes, the universe is set up for you, but you have to give your OC a soul and that and comes from talent and ability.

Ok, end of lecture. Hope I didn't put you to sleep...

On doing a contest. I think we will do one, but we'll make super easy. It will be the a single submission. They'll be categories for art, stories, poetry, screenies and even cosplay, if anyone submits anything. All first place winners get 50 points and all entries will be featured. The theme will be warm weather.  That's right. Anything that involves warm weather. Frolicking, dancing, the other f-ing, swimming, chanting, casting--whatever. Just make sure warm weather is involved. If you guys want a greater challenge, let me know and I'll put it to a poll. I'll announce something more concrete in May.
The Benefits of Fan Fiction and Fan Art
This was journal entry for The-Bards-College. I thought it might also might make a good tutorial, so I just put it in tutorial form.
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51 deviations
Lady Marie Gawadunen by Whisper292
I have never seen any of your art work before outside of your tarot, screenshots and writing, so this is a real treat.

You did an excellent job on the hands and bracers. Hands are so difficult to draw that I give you mad kudos for your mastery.

You also did an outstanding job on her hair and face. The coloring and shading were perfect, particularly in the case of her eyes. Also, the earrings were a great touch.

On things that could be improved: you could have shown more detail in her arms (more muscle tone). Her collarbone and neck also need more detail. Her stomach is fine, and her top is adequate, but again, I think it needs a bit more detail. The skirt needs redone entirely as the edges appear flat.

Overall, this is a great composition, especially if you are new to this kind of medium.
Anni and Jules by Lesliewifeofbath
Anni and Jules
Just an old screen shot from Nerevar Blue of Annika Blue and Julan Kaushibal I'm going to change the cover of Chapter I

Nerevar Blue Series: lesliewifeofbath.deviantart.co…

kateri-t's incredible mod Ashlander Julan can be found here: lovkullen.net/Emma/Kateri.htm

Annika Blue is my creation, though I have followed some of the prompts in the game and the Mod Ashlander Julan.

Morrowind © 2003 Bethesda Softworks LLC

Please see the Read Me located in my gallery for a complete listing of Mods. fav.me/d5epbgt
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So What's Up, Buttercup?

Sat Aug 8, 2015, 9:53 PM
So my family made it in one piece.

Slowly, I've been putting things together. Looking for a job, getting Max situated, getting unpacked, trying to understand this crazy beautiful city...you know, all the things that go with moving.

Before I left, I started writing for the Cracked Crown Series and as much as I want to get back into gaming and writing, I'm just too tuckered out. Also, there's a part of me that's kind of afraid that I'll get swept up into other things like supporting my family, entertaining my child, etc and move away from my very favorite hobby and one of my favorite non-places in world: dA.  It scares me, but it might just be a fact of life.

Anyway, I'm not going pressure myself or worry--as that does little good.  Here's a gift from our travels: Canon Beach.

Canon Beach by Lesliewifeofbath


Skin by SimplySilent

On the Road

Journal Entry: Fri Jul 10, 2015, 6:52 PM


So. My family and I have been on the road for two days now. We left Martinsburg, WV on Wednesday and now we are in Wisconsin, heading for Portland, OR.


I am exhausted.


And this computer is being a wang, so this entry won't be long. I'll be sharing some pics as soon as I have the energy and connectivity to upload them.


My son is in the hotel room, playing Skyrim Minecraft.


Much love to you all.



Esme in the Sun-- Myasthenia Gravis Awareness by Lesliewifeofbath
Esme in the Sun-- Myasthenia Gravis Awareness

Excerpt from The Cracked Crown Series

Esme was a girl of no consequence, blown to and fro by the winds of chance.  She was the middle daughter of five children born to a tavern keeper and a failed mage.   She was a nobody with a bleak future lingering just over the horizon. But she had something, a spark of the divine. Esme was blessed with a fateful mixture of curiosity and cunning that would pull her away from the path of drudgery and lead her to a destiny far beyond anyone’s reckoning.

Esme is a character from the new Cracked Crown Series that is currently in the works. She's also a part of the June Myasthenia Gravis Awareness month project.  MG is a rare autoimmune disorder that not many people know about. Please check out the website to learn more about the disease and show your support:www.myasthenia.org/ .  A friend of Whisper292 has this debilitating disease, and we're doing what we can to raise awareness by wearing teal, which is the representative color.

Skyrim Bethesda Softworks©

Modified in Gimp 2.6

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High Flying Adored by Lesliewifeofbath
High Flying Adored
My Oblivion gal, Isodole. She'll factor a bit in the next series.

Rendered in Gimp 2.6

Oblivion © 2006 Bethesda Softworks LLC
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An Interview with the Dragonborn

Fri May 8, 2015, 11:02 PM


As I'm really busy packing, I really haven't had time (or energy) to start the next series, so I figured I'd sit down with Marceline and pick her brain. Enjoy. If you'd like to do this, the rules for this particular tag are below the interview.


Marceline Interview by Lesliewifeofbath



I met with Marceline shortly after her arrival to Solsthiem. Heavily pregnant, Marceline deigned to spend a rollicking half hour with me.

1. Hello! What's your name?
Annka Marceline Kaushbael, but you knew that, I think.

2. About how old are you?
It's not polite nor is it wise to ask a woman's age, but as you've asked and as I have nothing to hide, I'll tell you. I am 33 years old.

You are radient.
Darling, there is life after 30.

3. What food tempts you?
With a body like this? Eh, nothing normally, but seeing how I'm eating for three, well, I do crave a crispy baguette and some butter, occasionally, the odd bagel and lox.

Oh come on, no sweet rolls?
(Marceline scowls)

4. Do you go to school?
I was taught by the finest mind in all of Tamriel. His name was Master Ayron.

5. What animal are you or most related to you?
Odd question, but as I am at your disposal, I'd say a Dragon. After all, I am Dragonborn.

6. Are you straight, gay, or what?
(Marceline looks taken back, then sneers) Whichever one gets me where I want to be.

7. Have you hurt anyone in anyway?
Many, and in many ways.

8. Have you killed someone before? (Preferably human)
Of course. You don't get to be where I am with out stepping over a few dead bodies.

9. What class are you? (Low, medium, high)
High class, darling...high class.

10. Strengths? (Speed, strength, etc.)
A sharp mind, strength of purpose and ravishing looks. Don't roll your eyes, dear; it's unfitting for a person your age.

11. Well then. Any family?
Of course.  I'm living in the home of my father,
Turimar Kaushibael, Factor of Raven Rock and my mother Igna Morte Kaushibael. And of course, my husband Ondolemar.

12. What're your hobbies?
Turning gold into more gold, political intrigue and....interior decorating.

13. Got a crush?
I am fortunate that my husband is my crush. This time I married for love. It's been quite rewarding.

14. Thought about marriage or kids?
I believe we've already covered that, and I am sitting here in my last trimester. I'm due any day.

15. Are you female, male, or both?
Look at me. Do you really have to ask?

16. No, of course not. I'm sorry.  Anyway, are you human, werewolf, ghost, etc.?
I am Dunmer and Nord with a smattering of Breton and Imperial blood.

17. Any pet peeves?
Oh, just the usual. Stupidity for one (she glares intensely at me). I also don't like hearing the answer no. I rarely take it. There is always a way.

18. Do you have any special abilities?
I would say I am empathic. I know what people want and what they want to hear; that's helped me out of a few tight spots.

19. Any nicknames?
I was named for my great-grandmother Annika Blue, as is half the population of Raven Rock. After all, she was there Nerevarine and first Factor. I mean if you yelled out "Annka!" a dozen or so heads would turn. Actually, you should do that during the Feast of the Dead. It's hysterical. Anyway, I decided to distinguish myself from my counterparts and took my middle name. Marceline was my great, great-grandmother's name.

20. Birth defects?
(Marceline raises an eyebrow and sighs. I quickly move on to the next question.)

21. Do you have a pet, sidekick, partner of any kind?
My husband is my true partner, but I am closely affiliated with Atvir Dres and Aela. Angela Morrard is dear to me.

22. Do you have a picture of yourself?
Outside of the cover shot.
Yes, you can use this one. It's one of my favorites.

Interview II by Lesliewifeofbath


 
23. Someone stole your sweetroll?
Let them have it. I don't eat sticky, peasant food.

24. Who/What faction is your arch-nemesis?
Humph. I have a few enemies as I feel it's better to be feared than loved. As for an arch-nemesis, well, it's clearly  Elenwen, I'll never forgive that bitch--and trust me, one day you will read about her demise. I will wait and strike at her when she least expects it. I will make her suffer...and I will make her beg.

(Gulp) Anyone else?
Well, there's always Delphine, but she's no equal. She rather pathetic and not worth my enmity.

25. Where did you grow up?
I grew up in here in Solesthiem amid the rock and ash. It is the land of sea and fog.

The prodigal daughter returns.
Yes, you could say that.

26. Any tragedies that you would be willing to share?


Of course. Life is a series of little tragedies and I will tell you this: it is a liability to love.  The greatest tragedy for me, outside of my brother's death, was watching my great grandfather die. You see my great grandmother, Annika Blue, the Nerevarine lived for a long time, long past the average lifespan of a Breton or Imperial, but even then her life ended long before that of my grandfather, Julan Kaushibael, who was full-Dunmer. When I was young I watched him drink himself into infirmity.  You see, he never recovered from Annika's death. After witnessing that, I tucked my heart away, until I could hide it no longer...but...well, I know this sounds terrible, but I hope to outlive my husband, although I know there's little chance of that happening outside of some tragic accident as Altmer men live...well, they live for a very long time.

Interesting. Care to elaborate?

Not really, but I will. I...I just don't want to see Ondolemar to suffer as Julan did. It seems to me that women bear suffering and loss much better than their male counterparts.

She then turns away and stares out the window. It feels like an eternity before she turns back to me.

"Are we done here?" she says, almost coldly.

Yes, Marceline. Thank you for your time.

"My pleasure," she says as she rises, taking my hand into hers. I stand here mesmerized by her. She a thing a beauty and true force to be reckoned with.

Want to interview someone? Here are the rules:

Rules:
A) Choose an OC.
B) Answer the questions as your OC.
C) Add an extra question and answer.
D) Tag four people please. (I doing more).

:iconheiwako: :iconalice-in-black: :iconsciencefinerd0725: :iconnorroendyrd: :icontarnisis: :icongaspode5:

Thank you :iconwhisper292:




Texture by Seykloren
Skin by Riemea

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:iconk-mar:
K-mar Featured By Owner Jun 15, 2015  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank you so much for the fave!!
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:iconlesliewifeofbath:
Lesliewifeofbath Featured By Owner Jun 15, 2015  Hobbyist Writer
No problem!
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:iconfloweroftheforest:
FlowerOfTheForest Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2015  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks for adding my work to your +favs. Tight Hug I appreciate it a lot. :TipOfTheHat:

              Pixel Rose - White version Pixel Rose : Yellow version rose  ... first time ... by FlowerOfTheForest   rose Pixel Rose : Yellow version Pixel Rose - White version
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:iconalixmaria:
AlixMaria Featured By Owner May 24, 2015   Traditional Artist
Thanks for the fav !!   
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:iconclu-art:
Clu-art Featured By Owner May 17, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you for faving 'Shine on Harvest Moon' Leslie! :D
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:iconnorroendyrd:
NorroenDyrd Featured By Owner May 10, 2015
Happy Mother's Day! Flower 
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:iconlesliewifeofbath:
Lesliewifeofbath Featured By Owner May 10, 2015  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you! Today I make slaves out of my spawn, muhahaahah.

Actually, my kids are awesome and we had a great day.
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:iconnorroendyrd:
NorroenDyrd Featured By Owner May 10, 2015
That's so great to hear! :D
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:iconbareha:
bareHa Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2015  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks for the fav
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:iconnorroendyrd:
NorroenDyrd Featured By Owner Apr 4, 2015
Happy Easter! Easter egg 
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