If you do what you have always done, you will get what you have always had.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Good holiday!

I made mention on Tuesday of Holly Lisle's "busman's holiday." I decided not only to take her advice, but also to get her to go with me, in a matter of speaking. Holly has written several wonderful clinics on world building and plotting. I have yet to make it completely through any of them because I get excited part way through and run with what I learn!

The clinic du jour was her "Create a Language" clinic. I'm not a linguist by any means. I picked up some French in 8th Grade and remember some of it, but my Italian was awful. To say that I was skeptical about creating a language is an understatement. I went through it, though, step by step, starting Tuesday evening. Honestly, I was so far behind on my time goal that I figured even if what I got was total crap, I'd at least make up some time. I didn't even have a specific story in mind when I started.

I grossly underestimated Holly's ability to teach. I'm three minutes short of my time for Sunday, and I have the start of not one but two languages. Yesterday I decided to use my language for a new story I'm outlining. I was going to work on adverbs and pronouns on the first one today, and then I thought it might be better to work up the bones for another one so I could translate the prophecy in Sword and Scabbard. Before you ask, I didn't use the first one because the sounds are quite different than what I needed for Sword and Scabbard.

I'm purposely not 'translating' the prophecy word for word; I don't have articles (the, a, an) in that language, so literally translated it will be much more crude, as an ancient prophecy should be. It will drive the applicable characters slowly insane, too, which will be MUCH more fun! It might mess with Scott, too, which is an added bonus.

I'm finally excited about S&S again. That book has been such a roller coaster; I really just want the first draft done so I can legitimately not look at it for a couple of weeks. The new language will mean re-writing some parts, but it's going to add some texture to the story where I had flatness before, and it will solve a problem that was bugging me. I can't remember the last time I was so into a project that I didn't want to do anything else. Thanks, Holly!



Blogger Valerie Comer said...

Oh VERY cool, EJ! I bought and downloaded the Language and Plot clinics last week (already had the other two) and I'm excited to hear your opinion. I've skim read it and plan to use the whole set on my newest project, when I have time to get started.

You give me hope :)

10:20 AM  
Anonymous Danny Ing said...

Good luck on creating your new language for S&S, EJ. I see the muse of J.R. Tolken has talked with your muse, Lenny on this inspiration. Good idea on not translating the prophecy, it will create more confusion and drama for your characters, EJ.

4:31 PM  

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