Author Topic: Fortnightly Writing Competition - In the beginning... (RESULTS)  (Read 6607 times)

Sinitrena

  • Mittens Serf
  • Wheel of Fate
    • I can help with translating
    • Sinitrena worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Sinitrena worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Every great story has to begin somewhere. Every great story needs a first sentence, a first paragraph, a first chapter (or a prologue, depending on how you set up your story) In this chapter the author needs to set up some characters (not necessaryly the main ones), the world and probably the atmosphere of the whole story. He also needs to captivate the reader to a certain degree. After all, you would want people to keep on reading.

Let's look at some examples:

A character is created:

Quote
First the colours.
Then the humans.
That's usually how I see things.
Or at least, how I try.
Here is a small fact
You are going to die.
I am in all truthfulness attempting to be cheerful about this whole topic, though most people find themselves hindered in believing me, no matter my protestation.
Martin Zusak: "The Book Thief"


Quote
I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Treborn. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my life. I was expelled from the university at a younger age than most people are allowed in. I tread path by moonlight that others fear to speak of during day. I have talked to Gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep.
You may have heard of me.
Patrick Rothfuss: "The Name of the Wind" (Actually from chapter 7, but it's the beginning of the story within the story, so I'd say it counts)


Or an atmosphere:

Quote
Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the Western Spiral Arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun.
Orbitting this at a distance of roughly ninety-two million miles is an utterly insignificant little blue-green planet whose ape-descended life forms are so amazingly primitive that they still think digital watches are a pretty neat idea.
Douglas Adams: "A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"


Quote
Mr and Mrs Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much. They were the last people you'd expect to be involved in anything strange or mysterious, because they just didn't hold with such nonsense.
J.K. Rowling: "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone"



But a first chapter alone does not make a story, it just sets the tone. The storyline in the rest of the novel is just as important.

So, what I want you to do this time around is devided into two parts:
1. Write a short first chapter, or first paragraph, or just first sentence of what could be a whole novel.
2. Write a summary of what is to follow or something that could be used as a blurb on the back off the book.



One last example:

First paragraph:
Quote
I didn't know how long I had been in the king's prison. The days were all the same, except that as each one passed, I was dirtier than before. Every morning the light in the cell changed from the wavering orange of the lamp in the sconce outside my door to the dim but even glow of the sun falling into the prison's central courtyard. In the evening, as the sunlight faded, I reassured myself that I was one day closer to getting out. To pass time, I concentrated on pleasent memories, laying them out in order and examining them carefully. I reviewed over and over the plans that dad seemed so straightforward before I arrived in jail, and I swore to myself and every god I knew that if I got out alive, I would never never never taky any risks that were so abysmally stupid again.

And the blurb:
Quote
Because of his bragging - and his great skill - Gen lands in the King's prison, shackled to the wall of his cell. After months of isolation, he his released by none other than the King's scholar, the Magus, who believes he knows the site of an ancient treasure. The thief he needs for the long, dangerous journey is Gen. To the Magus, Gen is just a tool. But Gen has some ideas of his own.
Magan Whalen Turner: "The Thief"


And now you know what books I own in english ;) I hope I did not overwhelm you with all these quotes. In the end this is a rather simple topic, really. Just imagine you wanted to write a novel and go from there.
Deadline is the 8th february.
Go and be creative!
« Last Edit: 13 Feb 2014, 08:02 by Sinitrena »

I started something for this yesterday. Didn't have time to finish it today but it's shaping up quite nicely I think :-)
Certainly it's a cracking idea for a novel ;) Watch this space.

Baron

  • Mittens Serf
  • AGS Baker
  • Rottwheelers
  • Not-so-Evil Banana Dictator
    • I can help with AGS tutoring
    • Best Innovation Award Winner 2011, for the concept and management of SWARMAGS
    • I can help with voice acting
    • Baron worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
It was a dark and stormy night....

Hrm. :-\  This is harder than I thought.  I'll keep plugging away at it, though.

BvB

Ghost

  • AGS Baker
  • Rottwheelers
  • Time to give up.
    • Ghost worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Ghost worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
First paragraph:
Usually the ghost enjoyed the busy days before Christmas. The frantic chaos of people shopping at cross purposes, the ever-same little dramas, he could watch them and forget his boredom for a while. But today was different; it was a day that would change him forever.
He had been watching the beggar girl for a while now, unable to make any sense of her, but one thing annoyed the ghost. He knew he was invisible. That was part of what defined him- no matter how hard he tried, the living could not see him, could not hear him, would walk right through him and feel nothing but maybe an odd chill. He had accepted this and knew he couldn't change it.
But this girl was made invisible. On purpose. People would notice her and then make a point of not having seen her. A businessman would check his watch or reach for his mobile. A woman would suddenly decide that she needed a coffee and head for the other side of the street. And so the girl flashed a shy smile every so often only to find everyone else urgently looking the other way.
The ghost shook his head and felt anger. Emotions needed glands and a brain, nothing of which a ghost had, but some strong feelings can be remembered, and now the ghost remembered being angry.
Christmas wasn't a time for making people invisble. He decided to make that girl a present. Something simple but needed. His aimless gaze met a man in a nice suit, arms full of shopping bags. Now let's see... matter was easy. Matter was just stupid molecules. Make them forget that they are supposed to be a bag and...
*split*

Blurb:
When you're dead you're gone, only sometimes you aren't. Ghosts, revenants, unreal cats and more frequently end up in a strange gap between life and death, known as the Long Road. Unseen and unable to interact with the world of the living, these beings mostly strive to pay their Ticket Down. Some do. But some walk the road forever, not even knowing the price of their Ticket.
Andrew Coon is a stray ghost- lost, bored and cynic until he finds an odd goal for himself. He is going to make a perfect Christmas for a young vagabond. It is going to be great. And yes, her dying and joining him as a foxfire is a bit of a drawback. Sure, hiring an unreal cat to lead them to the Last Station might've been a silly idea. Discovering that there are people actually designing afterlives, now that's a thing you don't see each century. And hell are they cheating. But they have to stick to the one rule, there HAS to be a Ticket Down.
All ghosts strive. It's almost Christmas after all. Sometimes you need to pick your own presents, even if you have to do so in the past...

"He has no clue and just mashes tropes together... and yet he really scares the hell out of me!" - Stephen King's gardener

"I can't read all the long words!" - Stephen King's gardener's daughter

"woof?" - Guybrush (Stephen King's gardener's daughter's dog)

"What? No, I'm not the gardener." - Stephen King



__
edit: fixed some typos

__
edit 2: added quotes
« Last Edit: 02 Feb 2014, 20:23 by Ghost »

First paragraph
The door opens, and a woman enters the room. She is in the kitchen looking for her cat. "Bubbles!", she cried, "I have made you lunch!". No sound is made and she does the same thing again, hoping that her pet would hear her. She had already known, though, that the first time she called the cat, she would've already been there.

Blurb
Somewhere, in a land far away, lived a charming lady named Bubbles. She lived in small box-shaped house with her loyal pet - cat named Lisa. She lived alone, isolated from rest of the society; she didn't have friends, nor enemies. Bubbles enjoyed her life in solitude. She was happy, until one day. One day everything went wrong. Her cat ran away from her, and she realized how alone she was. To stop the bad feelings she decided to leave her house, and search for her lost friend.
« Last Edit: 02 Feb 2014, 17:05 by BSP »

First paragraph
As I pulled the pocket-sized pound-shop notepad out of the pocket of my faux-worn jeans and flipped it open to the page still marked with the receipt from the day it was bought, I knew I wasn't going to like what I was about to read. But I averted my eyes from the page at the last second and placed the notepad, closed again, on the table in front of me next to where the ashtray had been before the waitress had taken it away at my request. A man shouted something inaudible from a bar opposite, at no one in particular. A couple walked past my aluminium table, she with her arm awkwardly around his long, thin back and he strangely clasping her by the back of the neck, seemingly steering her down the road.  I watched the couple for a moment longer than I should have. She doesn't love him. A taxi drove through a large puddle of water from the earlier shower and splashed the pavement and my shoes, and I might have been pissed off were it not for the image I saw in the reflection of the taxi's window: the reflection of a man bloodied, bruised and beaten, a man broken in two, a man with nothing left to lose. I got up from the table and stood there for a moment deciding which way to walk. I was in an unfamiliar town, I didn't speak the language and in a few hours I was going to be wanted for murder. The odd pale green tint in the sky indicated another shower. I left the cafe, falling in line behind the couple, taking my coffee cup but leaving the notepad on the table. Someone else can deal with it.


Blurb
When he finds his girlfriend dead and all circumstantial evidence pointing towards him, Peck knows he has been framed. But by whom? And why him? Beaten, bloodied and wanted by police in a strange land for a murder he didn't commit, Peck is about to give up all hope when he suddenly finds himself a national celebrity as the unwitting hero of a wholly unrelated crime. Can a wanted man hide in the spotlight? As Peck is forced to live a double life, he remains committed to a single goal - justice - from the first captivating paragraph until the explosive, mind-bending finale.

"I've never read anything like it. I quit." - Stephen King

"People will be quoting Stuart's work for years to come." - Oscar Wilde

"I haven't read it yet." - J. K. Rowling

Ghost

  • AGS Baker
  • Rottwheelers
  • Time to give up.
    • Ghost worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Ghost worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
I was in an unfamiliar town, I didn't speak the language and in a few hours I was going to be wanted for murder.

I'm going to quote this for years to come, Stuart!

Wyz

  • anno 1986
    • I can help with making music
    • I can help with story design
    • I can help with translating
    • I can help with voice acting
    • I can help with web design
    • Wyz worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Wyz worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Allright, I had fun with this :D

First paragraph
“That's one small step for a man,... and an even smaller step for mankind.”, He jokingly said to himself as he hurled himself in the vessel. And indeed it was in the most literal sense one could take; the step Herbert took was not much bigger then a finger’s width.
He shut the door behind him and firmly tightened the wheel that was attached to it. This was important since even a small gap could make water seeping in; something he definitely could not use during his journey. Even more since the water was actually raw sewage.
He strapped himself to the chair of the submarine and turned on the console. He checked if the com was working and contacted his assistant. “All right Geoffrey, I’m seated. You may commence flushing.”
“Ay captain!” Geoffrey sounded from the radio with a bit of a chuckle. And so he did, with a big whoosh Geoffrey flushed the toilet making the miniature submarine wash away into the depths of the toilet hole.

Blurb
Herbert Hill—an acclaimed university professor—has found a way to shrink people to miniature format. A risky business surely but this is not stopping him from trying it out on himself. We follow Herbert on his journey into the deep as he flushes himself down the toilet. Interestingly enough he finds out that there is more there then what meets the eye. Can he escape from the dangers that lurk below and can he get out in time before he starts unshrinking again. We all get to know this and how his assistant Geoffrey in the mean time has to conceal his public disappearance.

“A compelling story that is more then just a gimmick.” – Rowling, J.K.

“Ok, this story is literally about shit.” – James Spanos
Life is like an adventure without the pixel hunts.

Hmm... haven't entered one of these for a while!  Nice theme.

First Paragraph

I awoke to the sound of a silent scream from a distant dream, voices of the dead echoing in my head.  As my dulled senses came back to me, memories came back to me – memories of terrible cruelty, abominable acts, intolerable atrocities.  I had been told by my captors, time and time again, that I had been the perpetrator of these evils – yet something deep inside of me told me that they were lying.  Yet the memories, the dreams… I couldn’t deny them, couldn’t rid myself of them.  The sound of approaching footsteps reached through the stupor of my drug-induced state through to my consciousness.  They were coming.  Again.

Blurb

Imprisoned and tortured for the worst atrocities the land of Akolanthia had ever know, Yssan Allondor faced years of suffering, but a nagging doubt over his own guilt plagued him almost more than anything done to him by his gaolers.  When a small group of his former comrades manage to free him, Yssan embarks on a journey to discover his true identity – and in doing so, uncovers and incredible secret about the land of Akolanthia itself.

« Last Edit: 09 Feb 2014, 09:59 by CaptainD »

Ghost

  • AGS Baker
  • Rottwheelers
  • Time to give up.
    • Ghost worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Ghost worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
When a small group of his former comrades manage to free him, Yssan embarks on a journey to discover his true identity

That would make for a cool origin of Yssanspirit Dennis! Is one of the former comrades wearing a really nice felt hat? The possibilities! (nod)

When a small group of his former comrades manage to free him, Yssan embarks on a journey to discover his true identity

That would make for a cool origin of Yssanspirit Dennis! Is one of the former comrades wearing a really nice felt hat? The possibilities! (nod)

Perhaps in the sequel... also, Akoanthia may be synonymous with Reality on the Norm, who knows?

There are few sounds on my side of the road. Everything else is fog. A little light, congregating in puddles, tinting the fog and the night a sickly orange. Even the smells are muted: overflowing garbage bins, sewer drafts, the lingering aroma of countless defunct exhaust pipes, all overpowered by the fog as well. It fills my eyes, it fills my nostrils, it fills my lungs, it fills my ears, it fills my world. It is my world.

As I stop, the sound of footsteps is gone, too and cottonlike silence surrounds me. I stand and listen, in the uncertain, murky brown area between two orange glows. And I listen. Yes. The other footsteps are silent, too. Well. It has come to this, then. This is where and when. How appropriate.

----------------

Silent Nina is a woman with a past. Too much past for a single woman in her late twenties. This is her story, the story of her struggles to survive in a world that falls apart around her, haunted by past mistakes, uncertainties and misunderstandings.

------------------

„<<The Fox in he Fog>> is both mesmerizing and entrancing. One can but avidly follow the adventures of Nina, feverishly turning page after page.” The Times New Roman

„Hard to pick up (it is, after all, almost 1000 pages long), but even harder to put down.” The Onion

„A must read of the season.” Cosmopoolitan
I think, therefore I am, I think.

Baron

  • Mittens Serf
  • AGS Baker
  • Rottwheelers
  • Not-so-Evil Banana Dictator
    • I can help with AGS tutoring
    • Best Innovation Award Winner 2011, for the concept and management of SWARMAGS
    • I can help with voice acting
    • Baron worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Web of the Black Widow
Chapter One
   
   Sir Lionel of Beauchamps rode proudly through the Forest of Cray, the late-spring sunlight dappling the steel flanks of his armour so that he shone like an angel of the Righteous God himself.  His bright white stallion strutted more than trotted over the potholes and branches of the seldom used Forest Road, the nuisance of the effort revealing itself only in the animal's haughty sneer.  Behind rode John Brownlips, a gentleman of many sycophantic talents who served as both squire and troubadour to the shining knight.  At present he was composing a song relating the valiance of the great Sir Lionel on this very quest.  He sang:

    “Through the savage wooded lands
      The brave hero charged unswervingly
         To the rescue of such maiden fair,
      The flawless beauty Athesley.”


   Sir Lionel gave the signal to halt, squinting through the wooded fastness of Cray, a forest infamous for its false paths and deceptive twists.  Yet the birds still sung cheerfully to the rhythm of the whispering leaves overhead, signalling that there was yet no danger upon them.  Sir Lionel frowned.  “Flawless beauty?  I rather thought her a matronly figure the one time we met.”
   John Brownlips plucked the strings of his lute in contemplation.  “Delicate rose?” he suggested.
   Sir Lionel was too well bred to chuckle aloud, but he could feel the sensation twitching inside of him nonetheless.  “If I recall correctly, she is a crone-faced scold that could take paint off the wall with her tongue,” he stated definitively.
   John continued at his strings in thought.  “Dutiful grandmother?” he offered at length.
   Sir Lionel shook his head solemnly.  “No, she's only 19,” he sighed.
   A string snapped discordantly on the lute.  “Begging your pardon, milord,” John Brownlips began knavishly, “but why pray would we be riding through the Uncouth God's own middens heap to rescue such a lady?”
   Sir Lionel straightened in his saddle.  “Because her family is rich, you twit.  Never mind about the lady, just focus on me.”
   John Brownlips bowed in the saddle.  “But of course, milord.”  He busied himself with replacing the broken lute string while Sir Lionel tried to get his bearings.  To John Brownlips Sir Lionel looked the very epitome of chivalry, with a strong chiseled jaw and piercing eyes.  He held his head nobly aloft so that his well-groomed hair flapped like a blond pennon over his broad shoulders.  Who could get ever get enough of Sir Lionel the knight in song?
   “Three furlongs past the hoary oak along the forest path,” Sir Lionel quoted, starting forward once more.  “There is a cottage wherein the Lady we do hath.  That's what the ransom note said, although I suppose the churls that left it might not have measured the distance out so carefully, given their patently weak grasp of common grammar and poetic style.  What do you make it past the hoary oak, man?”
   But John Brownlips was still daydreaming about the primped perfection of Sir Lionel's golden locks.
   “No matter,” Sir Lionel continued.  "It cannot be far down-”
   And then the ground gave way beneath his steed, and Sir Lionel disappeared into the darkness.



Back of Book Blurb

   Grunbald the Snatch was the typical middle-aged she-dwarf: buxom, bejewelled, and bearded.  But the normalcy of her appearance masked a quite abnormal appetite: capturing and seducing the handsomest men of the realm.  Filled with self-loathing at her own depravity, she is suddenly offered redemption when a song about her passionate affections becomes a sensational hit throughout the land.  Now Grunbald must adapt to the baffling condition of fame, while coyly dodging the legions of lustful fans who flock to her wooded redoubt.  Will she come to terms with who she really is in time to find true love, or will she allow the medieval minstrel media to goad her into becoming an even greater monster?
   
   
   
« Last Edit: 06 Feb 2014, 05:44 by Baron »

WHAM

  • WHAMGAMES
    • I can help with AGS tutoring
    • I can help with play testing
    • I can help with scripting
    • I can help with story design
    • I can help with translating
    • I can help with voice acting
    • WHAM worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • WHAM worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
First paragraph

It was so cold.

Sanna pressed her arms close to her body, pulling her coat tight, and shivered as she made her way through the main street of the city she had called home. There were cars still parked on the sides of the street, the fuel in their tanks frozen solid, their cracked windows frosted over and covered with a thick layer of feathery snow. There was no wind or birdsong, just a hollow silence in which the crunch of snow underfoot seemed to echo and roar like thunder. The air stood still and heavy, and the dark clouds She had been alone for a few days now, ever since Antti had disappeared in the middle of the night, and the food she had left in her stolen rucksack was running out. Behind the sunglasses she had taken from the dashboard of an abandoned car, her eyes scanned the storefronts and displays. They were all in ruins, looted or burnt down in desperate attempts to gain entry or just to stay warm. A lone Finnish flag hung low in a flagpole. Someone had smeared some red paint over the blue and white cloth and had then reeled the flag back up. Sanna paused to look at it, wondering if it was a sign of something. A crunch of snow echoed in the lifeless street, but she had stopped walking.

It was so cold, and she wasn't alone anymore.


Blurb

Climate change? Nuclear winter? Galactic radiation?

Everyone's guess was as good as the next.

Whatever the cause was, the effects were obvious. A winter in June, darker and colder than any before, had stranded the entire city of Tampere under a blanket of snow. As temperatures crept down to -40c and below, vehicles ceased to start, trains froze on their tracks and people shivered in their homes as the power went out. Radio stations went quiet, phone lines and internet connections went down and the thick cloud layer blocked even satellite connections. In days the people went without food and water.

And then the fight for survival started.
My Fortnightly Writing Competition collected works
https://goo.gl/VUQbzU

The deadline for this has passed and Sinitrena hasn't been active since about 6 minutes after she posted this theme.  Should we just go ahead and start voting?

Sinitrena

  • Mittens Serf
  • Wheel of Fate
    • I can help with translating
    • Sinitrena worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Sinitrena worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
The deadline for this has passed and Sinitrena hasn't been active since about 6 minutes after she posted this theme.  Should we just go ahead and start voting?
Sorry about this. I had a couple of busy weeks, but I haven't forgotten. And you are absolutely right, time is up and voting starts now.

We have 8 incredible entries:

Ghost
BSP
Stupot+
Wyz
CaptainD
UnLady
Baron
Wham


Impressive, I didn't expect so many entries.

As always, we do the voting in categories:

Character: You find one or several characters really believable/captivating/magnetic/unique, etc.
Plot: The story arc was well-organized, coherent, and well-executed with appropriate pacing (focus on the blurb)
Atmosphere: This is all about feeling: did the story evoke strong feelings due to excitement/humour/intrigue/wonder/emotional intensity? (focus on the first chapter)
Background World: The best setting or milieu for a story; a place brought to life.
Word Choice/Style: The technical art of combining words in clever or gripping ways
Connection: Do first chapter and blurb fit together? Could this beginning lead to the storyline?

You can vote three or less people per category. Every vote counts as one point. Whoever recieves most points wins. Voting is open untill the 12th. I should have some trophies ready by then.

Can I just point out a typo on my first line (duh) - It should be "I awoke to the sound of a silent scream from a distant dream" - corrected now, but I'd managed to type scream a second time instead of dream!

Wow, this was tough... :confused:

Character: Baron, Stupot+
Plot: Stupot+, Ghost
Atmosphere: UnLady, WHAM
Background World: Baron, UnLady,
Word Choice/Style: Baron
Connection: Wyz, BSP

Baron

  • Mittens Serf
  • AGS Baker
  • Rottwheelers
  • Not-so-Evil Banana Dictator
    • I can help with AGS tutoring
    • Best Innovation Award Winner 2011, for the concept and management of SWARMAGS
    • I can help with voice acting
    • Baron worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
There were some impressive reads here, given the brevity of the entries.  I want to personally single out Stupot+, UnLady, and WHAM for chastisement: how dare you write so little and leave me hanging in suspense!  By the same token, Ghost's background world/Long Road begs to be fleshed out further.  I hate to assign votes when I'm still frustrated with all of you, but you leave me little choice:

Character:
Stupot+ (Although the character himself is hardly described, his thoughts and appearance through the environmental description paint a complex and intriguing picture).

Plot:
Stupot+ (How will Peck navigate and reconcile the dual worlds of hero-dom and murder suspect?  I must know!)
UnLady  (What ghost of Silent Nina's troubled past waits for her in the muted orange glow of the hard city streets?  I must know!)
CaptainD (Who is Yssan and why is his mind betraying his conscience?  What is the terrible secret of the realm of Akolanthia?  I must know!)

Atmosphere:
CaptainD (The conflict of the mind -"the memories, the dreams… I couldn’t deny them" and the horror of torture to come create strong emotional intensity)
UnLady (Muffled sounds, unpleasant smells, and a vaguely glowing world create a suspenseful feeling of otherworldliness)
WHAM (The desperation conveyed by the desolation of the Finnish apocalypse gave me a feeling of dread menace)

Background World:
Ghost (intriguing backdrop of the semi-afterlife)
UnLady (the smells and sounds of a half-seen world)
Stupot+ (how objects not necessarily part of the story -couple, taxi, notebook, the weather - drive the narrative: it's the background world telling the story).

Word Choice/Style:
WHAM (It seems I always vote WHAM for the way he puts words together: "the crunch of snow underfoot seemed to echo and roar like thunder" -perfect.)
CaptainD ("They were coming.  Again." -Your descriptions were good, and I love how these two short sentences/fragments invoke a simple but powerful terror)

Connection:
Ghost (The motives of the main character connect intriguingly with the backdrop/plot described in the blurb)
Stupot+ (The action of the first paragraph flows flawlessly into the broader plot)
WHAM (I liked how you conveyed the unknowability of what was really going on in the chaos of the apocalypse, using it as a theme to link the action in your first chapter to the blurb).

Janos Biro

  • Real life has some pretty unfair puzzles
    • I can help with play testing
    • I can help with story design
    • I can help with translating
Sorry about it, but who is allowed to vote?
I'm willing to translate from English to Brazilian Portuguese.