Brief Post: Weather and Glasses

Nasty weather’s heading this way and plans to stick around a while, so I’ll keep this brief. One thing I do like in a setting, especially anime but any setting, is attention to details. Two things that really show those off are… heh. Weather, and glasses.

Weather is, as any general would tell you, a critical factor in a fight. From heat so bad it gives your fighters heatstroke, to freezing blizzards that kill you mere feet from shelter, to rain that makes all the footing slippery. Mother Nature may not be deliberately out to kill you, but she doesn’t have anything against making it easier for someone or something else to do you in. I like works of fiction that pay attention to that.

And glasses. Hee. From the Scary Glasses Flash to subtle reflections of oncoming enemies to the near-inevitable “what happens if I lose my lenses in a fight?” Which, depending on the character, can range anywhere from “that’s inconvenient” to “I’m blind!” to “killer eyebeams now, duck….”

Details. Give me details – show me you’ve put thought into the setting, and the consequences of everything outside normal life – and my bunnies will follow you anywhere.

So when I’m editing, one thing I try to do is devote at least one run of edits to details. Are there enough to set the scene? Is there any way I can rewrite the details that are there to be clearer, more precise? What specific detail could I add that will make the reader feel they’re there?

Get those right, and who knows; maybe the readers will follow us anywhere, too….

15 thoughts on “Brief Post: Weather and Glasses

  1. Details are critical, yes. They’re where I hit most of my problems with SoD. Make your setting self-consistent, and I can accept most things, but if you aren’t careful with the details then even near-real-world/history breaks SoD.

    One habit I have that some of my gaming group occasionally complains about is exactly this. I care about the setting, and actually make “living characters” even if it makes them mechanically underpowered because I’ve spent character generation stuff on “fluff”. And even if it’s not system-mechanically important, I still ask questions about “how and why does this work?”. (figuring out how a winged humanoid character would carry all her gear was _interesting_, as she couldn’t just wear a backpack but still had a really high carry-limit according to the system-mechanics) I even go so far as making sure that not only is there room to carry the gear, but that the gear is accessible (carrying a spare weapon isn’t much help if you can’t get at it because it’s at the bottom of your pack, and even if it is technically accessible there’s the question of how easily you can draw it safely).

    And yes, this is one reason I really like your stories, because you do an amazing job at including the little details and actually making them work.

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      1. Try figuring out how to stick a shirt on a species that has wings stretching from the bottom of the back to above their heads like bat wings. Without cutting them. And if You involve the arms how the heck do they wield weapons in the air. Don’t think I ever solved if they had an elongated torso to support a second set of should blades. Otherwise, it messes up the shoulder joint. But there are other internal organ shifting that would need to happen, and would someone please direct me to the anatomy of the bat wing?

        World building, that’s where it’s at. Literally. I think the Kinsmen series by Ilona Andrews is very well done in that regard.

        And you, but that goes without saying. Adore what you do!

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      2. Actually, I got some of my ideas for potential designs for both winged humanoids and humanoids with extra arms from an old (defunct) webcomic, which had some very interesting designs and arguments for why those designs were chosen:
        While it doesn’t work for all character types, it did lead me to incorporate some design features from cheetahs in my ideas of how winged humanoids or humanoids with extra arms might actually work. Specifically, the “floating shoulder” assembly, where the shoulder doesn’t actually attach directly, instead being held in suspension by tendons and ligaments, and the way the spine is similarly “loose”, with tendon and ligament support so it can extend and retract during movement. And yes, elongated torso makes it all a lot easier.

        Also, I’ve not tried batwing designs. I was working with feathered wings (Aasimar characters), so the wings weren’t actually attached over such a large portion of the side, allowing clothing to be a _little_ easier to design for it. I made a lot of use of small (buckled) pouches, and utility-belts. Most of the larger carrying capacity was in effectively super-sized fanny-packs (since I didn’t have magical storage at the time).

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  2. As someone who is severely near-sighted, I totally get what you mean by stories missing details. Like, is the person far-sighted or near-sighted? How extreme is it? Do they have a back-up pair? etc.

    Although… the “pushing glasses up your nose to cause the Scary Glasses Flash” is a bit of a pet-peeve of mine. The reason why people have to push glasses up their nose is because they were looking down at their book/phone long enough for their glasses to slip down their face. So practically this happens too often for it to be a meaningful character tic…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. As someone who has worn glasses since preschool, I would just like to say that its nice to find a storyteller who thinks about how glasses effect the story. One detail I’ve never seen come up is headaches. When we aren’t wearing glasses, my twin and I get headaches. It can take anything from a few minutes to about half an hour, mostly depending on light conditions.

    Liked by 1 person

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