Monday, February 22, 2010

Fantasy Characters

We've batted characters around a couple of times, but I want to look deeper at fantasy characters. How are they different from contemporary characters? How are they the same?

We are all familiar with elves, dwarves, wizards and the like. How can we come up with new fantasy characters that are fresh and interesting?

How can you take an "old" fantasy character and make them new?

In my WIP, I use fairies. They aren't the main characters, but are crucial to the plot. I wanted to do something different, so I researched them and bought books about them. Then I took an idea from one book and used the four elements: earth, air, fire, water. I gave each group of fairies a specific job in the world I created. I want to do something similar in each book I write and have already come up with two other types of fairies that are different from what I've learned about fairies.

I have two groups of people I totally made up: the Kazmura (cave people) and the Acadians (forest people). It took some time, but I worked at developing them before I added them to the story by figuring out their habits, history, beliefs, environment, etc. I came up with new words and phrases for each group.

I also have dwarves, but wanted to make them fresh and different somehow, so I took what I knew about them and only tweaked them a little. They look like regular dwarves and they are miners ... but my dwarves mine salt. It adds a new dimension to an old group of characters.

Let's talk fantasy characters. How are you handling developing new ones or making old ones fresh?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Struggles and Writing

Hope you enjoyed your "snow day!" I had a real nice weekend in Williamsburg and got quite a bit of writing done. Not as much as I would have liked, but I'm pretty satisfied. Akeela is out of the caves, but has accidently fallen into a Moon Dancer ring. How will she get out? We'll find out in the third part of the book. Right now, I have to finish the second part. And I'm so close, I can smell it! HA!!

I came home to find out a couple of writing friends are experiencing some struggles with their health. They want to write, but are being interrupted by doctor visits and worries.

I've heard it said rough times make for a better writer. We actually become better writers after we've experienced pain of some sort ... especially emotional. What is up with that??

Are you experiencing struggles this week? How are you handling them?

Has going through fire and trial made you a better writer? Any idea why?

Let's talk.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Snow Day

Here on the East Coast, we've had a pounding of snow and we're expecting more tomorrow. Thankfully, the power stayed on in my area. Those down the shore are not so fortunate.
I'm giving myself and you a Snow Day. We'll have another topic for discussion next week!
Talk to you then ~ keep writing!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Building A Fantasy World

First, an announcement: I want to let everyone know about an incredible workshop possibility for MG/YA fantasy novelists. Highlights is sponsoring a week-long, mentoring workshop with established fantasy authors. They are only taking 8 authors. Check out the details here:

I've applied and am waiting anxiously! You never know what God will decide.

We talked about Character Arc for our heroes and villians - some secondary characters should have complete character arcs, too, but we don't need to talk about at this point.

Let's talk about building our worlds. Fantasy writers have somewhat of an advantage over contemporary writers in that we can do anything we want with our worlds. We don't have to obey the laws of nature or have a world that is like Earth. Of course, we want to make our worlds real so the reader feels part of the story. How do fantasy writers create fantasy worlds that seem real? What do we include? What should we avoid? I look forward to good discussion!