Saturday, January 30, 2010
I talked about the when and the where in the last posting. The next step in my way means I have to find the characters. For this book I needed a hero, a heroine and at least one villain plus characters that would be important to this story and would perhaps become important to the other stories in what I now saw as a trilogy. One thing I really need to learn is to name my characters. Some people may think this is strange but until my characters have a name I really can't write about them. Somehow the name helps me define their character. For my current book the name I chose for the heroine was Tira and that name just popped into my head. Finding the names for the other characters was more difficult. I took some of the books I have about Egypt and used the names I found there to develop character names. The hero became Kashe. Hos older brother became Pian. There was a reason for these names sunce I was injecting some Nubian influences into the characters. Tira is a young black woman and Pian is a throwback to an ancestory his father has tried to deny. Kashe's younger brother is named Namose which is a take off of an ancient Egyptian name. Of course when I began the rough draft of the story, Kashe's younger brother was his sister called Merin. The change came about during the planning of the story. I'll explain later. Now for some villains. The nomarch of Mero and his son Pian are among the less that nice characters and so are the priests of Aken Re. There are two main ones in the story. Oris and Hebu, these men have come from a different country, actually they belong to the Hyksos, the mysterious invaders of the land. One more character crept in and this was Tuten, a retired member of the nomarch's guard and Kashe's mentor. Once I had the characters there were other needed things but that will come later.
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Writers get an idea and run with it to strange and interesting places. Let me show you how this works. I've always been interested in Ancient Egypt and have used it in one book but I wanted to do perhaps a time travel using the setting of the area where I've read many books. So I thought of a number of things that would be needed. Where was easy and that led me to do reading in one of the many books I have. Actually this was kind of an encyclopedia of Egypt. One thing I learned was there were no camels in Egypt until around 1 AD. That sort of took me on a turn. I really wanted camels and horses and chariots. This was when I decided I needed to cast the story in a different Egypt or an alternate world with enough the same to make the world recoganizable. Once I had the basic research done, I was ready to plan. To plan, I need to know how my story ends. I also plan the way I'm going to get there. Not that this is carved in stone and in future posts I'll show how this happened with this story and with other stories.
Sunday, January 24, 2010
I'll be posting some writing tips here several times a week. When I began writing, I read every book I could find about how to write and I tried and picked a bit from this one and a bit from that book and evolved my own system, sort of. I am partly a plotter and partly a pantster. This often confuses my critique group since my early drafts are very sparse as far as detail. I'll be talking here about ideas and how they develop into stories, about the various things I need to know before I can begin writing and about the drafts I do and the lists I make. I absolutely love drafts. For me writing is sort of like painting in that I apply layers after layers until I find I can't continue to add to the story. Then I breath a sigh of relief.