My biggest worry about these chapters is that people will look at the map we put in the front of the book and realize that it doesn’t match the text. I really do like Jeff’s map–it’s well-drawn, and it has a very cool feel to it. I love the little city designs; they give the map a different feel from many fantasy maps. Overall, I think this map fits the ‘mood’ of the book quite well.
However, I myself didn’t give him good enough instructions on how to develop the map, and now it doesn’t completely fit what I talk about in the text. Since the landscape of the land is so important to the development of the book and the magic system, this could be a problem for some readers.
Anyway, yes, Raoden makes the connection here. The Chasm line is what has been missing all along. I tried to emphasize the Chasm several times in the text, reminding people that it’s around. However, as I may have said in other annotations (the spoiler sections), I now worry that the Chasm is TOO obvious. Anyway, I suspect the discovery will work for some people, and not work for others. Hopefully, the characterizations and the events in the book are interesting enough that even if some people think this discovery is obvious, they’ll enjoy reading anyway.
You’ll notice that I start this chapter with a block of narrative, going over what has been happening since our last triad. I do this with some frequency in the Raoden chapters. Not everything in a book can be ‘in scene,’ and I sometimes find myself throwing in these narrative sections at the beginning of chapters. It’s a bit of a triad-break, but not a huge one. After all, you can just assume that the narrative is coming from Raoden as he thinks back about previous events.
Speaking of that, I haven’t really talked much about viewpoint in these annotations. You may or may not have noticed that I’m a big fan of strictly-limited third-person viewpoints. Third person past tense has pretty much become the industry standard during the last fifteen years (before that time, you saw a lot more omniscient–look at DUNE, and to a lesser extent, ENDER’S GAME.) You almost never see it these days, though, and I personally think that’s a good thing. Omniscient is a little better for plotting in some places, but limited is far better for characterization.
Any time you read one of my books, you should remember that I’m almost always in strict limited. Whatever you read in the text, it is something that a character feels or has observed.