Monday, April 29, 2013

Creative Insults

How do you curse people out without swearing? Remember the song from "How the Grinch Stole Christmas." That's how you do it.

In my series, I wrote characters who found creative ways to insult people. Only, I had no idea what they'd say. I spent hours combing different Thesauruses and couldn't help laughing when I thought about the characters combing those words. Just for fun, below are some words I found.

Low-Life/Stupid
Mutt ( My favorite so far. Imagine calling someone a mutt)
Mongrel
Leech
Vermin
Parasite
Insect
Pig
Savage
Troll
Bottom-feeder
Rat
Rodent
Dog
Cretin
Mutant
Dismal
Vacant
Arid
Stale

Ugly

Distasteful
Nauseating
Unsightly
Repulsive
Offensive
Depraved
Foul
Spiteful
Homely
Grievous
Revolting
Cheap
Beastly
Polluted
Putrid
Moldy
Odious

Annoying
Acid (acidic)
Abrasive
Tedious
Vexing
Grating
Thorny
Intolerable
Plaguing
Twit
Bitter 
Gnawing
Gnat

Here's an article about creative insults.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Naming Your Fantasy World

As if naming our characters wasn't hard enough. On top of that, we have to name lands, buildings, foods, cultures, mountains even treaties and wars. The list goes on and on. How can we possibly come up with so many?


1. Pay attention to everything around you. You may come across a perfect name in a restaurant sign or even in graffiti. I once got a town name from an item in a craft store.

2. Think about what you want to name, a landmass for instance. What does that land represent to your story or to the people who live on it? Write down a few words. Then, go to a dictionary and a thesaurus and look up those words. Look at how the pronunciation is spelled, even the etymology- the origin of that word. Something in there may speak to you.

For instance, my race of beings can shadow but I didn't want to call it that. Instead, I looked up the word shadow and its origins. Now, my characters sceadu. It's pronounced the same, just spelled differently.

If the words you listed aren't working for you, find their synonyms and try again. Also, I like to use Latin Translations. I wanted a name for my race of being so, I wrote down words that represent them then, I looked up those words' Latin translation. After that, I pulled parts from each translation until I created a name I liked.

3. Remember, fantasy writers have amazing imaginations. Think of a letter and create a made up word from that. I thought of "B" and came up with Borterain. It doesn't have to be the perfect name. It could be incredibly silly. But, at least you have something you could work with. Play around with it. Take some letters out- put new ones in until you create something you like.

4. A comment from a Google+ group drew my attention to Random Name Generator. I do a general name search then, I keep reloading the page. Each time, the name changes. I reload and reload until I come across one I like.

5. Don't try to name everything at once. You'll only make you head explode. Instead, group them. For instance, start from big to small. Work on the names of all the landmass in your world, then the different territories within those landmasses- towns within those territories- any mountain ranges, deserts, forests, rivers near those towns.

Don't try keeping them all in your head. It won't work. I've mentioned my World Building Journal and Evernote in other posts. All names go in either of those places. I also have a colored world map on my wall with territories, cities, towns and geography.
6. The names don't have to be complicated or even made up. I have towns called Sovereign and Shepherd's Hook.

World Building is supposed to be fun. Enjoy it. The world you're creating comes straight from your imagination. It doesn't have to be anything other than what you want it to be.

Monday, April 22, 2013

The Story Behind


It's nice to back away from the novel for a bit and write something silly and pointless...well not pointless, everything we write has a purpose even if we don't see it. Writing a dark fantasy novel can sometimes feel like a chore, at least for me. World building can be such a pain. Don't get me wrong, I love the process. Wouldn't change a thing.

I've never tried writing prompts. Don't know why. They're a good way to work the creative muscles on something not as important as your own novel. When I created this image, I thought it would be fun to write what came to mind. What if you were walking through this landscape? What would be going through your mind?



...

Why in the world do I have to go to that primitive land?

My superiors said I need to blend in with the inhabitants of Terrace. That's the only reason I'm in this ridiculous costume. Either the male savages are all pigs or the women are stupid. Maybe both. How am I supposed to blend in anyway? I think they'll notice the flaming wings.

The Paladins sent me on this vulgar mission to punish me. It wasn't my fault these flames got out of control. They were demolishing those buildings anyway. I saved them time and money.

What they should do is let me go home and talk to the folks. My parents left out some important details when I was a child- like I'd grow wings on my twenty-fifth birthday. But, they live on the other side of some unfavorable territories. I heard rumors residents in the floating city above the ruins have flaming wings. I'd rather travel to the other side of the world.

It would be so much easier if I could fly to Terrace. The mutts in the floating city shoot down anything flying over the Sea. The Paladins refused to give me any transportation. Whatever. Forget blending in. I have barbarians to destroy.

That was fun! If a passage or line comes to your mind, feel free to share. I'd love to read it!

Monday, April 15, 2013

It Started With A Theme Song

Have you ever gotten a character, scene or worldbuilding idea you never thought you needed?

Last year, I read a post by Kelly Hashway where she talked about the playlist for her book. It got me thinking. If my characters had their own music video, what would the song be? It's been a lot of fun. I can't hear a song without trying to match it with a character.

Funny enough, something unexpected happened while listening to "A Little Faster" by There for Tomorrow.
It had become the song for one of my characters. I suddenly got the idea the way she was using her power wasn't its true form. She'd simply been letting it go out of control. "A Little Faster" gave me her power when it was under her control.

This seemed to come out of somewhere. I mean, the song became her theme because of the beat not the words. Besides, I thought I was done with her power.

Then, there was "Hero (The Legion of Doom Remix)" by Skillet.
The original version is the song for two of my characters because they're each other's hero. The thing is, I never thought of them that way until I heard that song. It's so obvious now.

I was listening to the remix and suddenly, an epic battle unfolded. I saw who was fighting, why and what each characters was doing. Now, I have an idea of how my series will end. I can't listen to "Hero (The Legion of Doom Remix)" without picturing that battle or the trailer for the final book in my trilogy.

Finally- well not really but if I listed all the songs that inspired me we'd be here all day- "Awake and Alive (The Quickening)."
I felt the beats and pictured one of my characters dancing to it. Not once had I ever thought of her as a dancer outside of her fighting skills. Through "Awake and Alive," I saw every one of her moments and felt the emotions behind them. Then, a scene unfolded where one of my POV characters was watching her dance. Now, I have another chapter for book 2 and another dimension to those characters.

What about you, have you ever gotten an idea you never thought you needed?

Friday, April 12, 2013

Poster for The Sciell

I haven't been this excited in awhile! I said before I work for my mom's new publishing company, Aubey LLC. She's also my publisher! We'll have a booth at BookExpo America this year. First time exhibiting. So awesome!

For the expo, I designed a poster promoting my book coming out next year. The book's titled The Sciell (pronounced shield without the "d"). It's the first in my Merging Worlds Trilogy. I love this poster so much and I've been so looking forward to sharing it with you. This might even be my book cover. Haven't decided yet.


Monday, April 8, 2013

2013 NY International Auto Show

All those shiny, gorgeous cars make me so happy. I almost missed it this year. That is so unlike me. I'd been going through my email and happened to come across a newsletter for the NY Auto Show. I knew the time was coming soon- or so I thought. Turns out, the dates were March 29- April 7. I read this the night of April 5. Seriously. I stared at the screen for a good minute going, how could I not know this.

 Anyway... made it!



And just like last year, the auto show nerd it out.



I had such a hard time taking these pictures without people in them. The one thing about the show in NY is...

So. Many. People. You have to take a picture in under, like, a second. That's all the time you have before someone parks themselves in front of you and leans against the car for a twenty minute photo shoot. I exaggerate but you get the point.

What I'm curious about, though, is how in the world they perched that Corvette on the wall.

This thing is several feet above the ground and it's not sitting on anything. What, did they like Gorilla Glue the tires? *I know they didn't but still...*

Don't know what to make of this monster but it is awesome to look at.

Friday, April 5, 2013

And The Winner Is...

First of all, you guys are all awesome! Thanks for voting! It was an interesting battle. And the winner is...

The Rogue



So, why did I want you to pick an image? The main race of beings in my series has a mark on them. It's like a tattoo or a brand they get when they reach of age- only the mark seemingly comes out of nowhere and it hurts like a beast when they get it.

I set the brand as the blue butterfly because I like what it represents. However, this particular symbol is feminine even the name is girly. There isn't a girly bone in my body and male characters have this symbol too so... I had to do something about that.

The Rogue will be the mark of this race and, because it's so important to the series, I'll be using it for like promotional posters, bookmarks, stuff like that and I love it! Thanks guys!

Monday, April 1, 2013

You Choose

I created three images for my book. This isn't the cover- more like an image to represent the entire series. Should've stopped at one though. Now, I don't know which one to use. I love them all equally. Let me know which one you like. The image with the most votes wins. Thanks!

The Serpent





The Flame





The Rogue




Come back Friday to find out who won!