If you have been reading my most recent posts, you may, very likely have developed an impression that I am not physically, emotionally, or just generally, well. You would be correct in this impression. Yet day in and day out, I persist in writing like I have never written before in this journal and elsewhere. Continue Reading
One challenge that all fantasy authors face when they decide to write characters that belong to a different race or species than the stock-standard Human is how to keep track of the relative abilities and shortcomings of the different races. The disadvantage of writing designs for each race in one’s stories is that it involves a lot of homework and researching things about how other authors have written characters of similar or even identical racial traits. And if your characters are anything like the characters in my stories, one also has to figure out how one is going to depict how being born of parents from two different races is going to affect the resultant child. So the question to ask oneself first is how are the peoples of different stock-standard races designed, and why? Why, as a question, is an author’s best friend. When an author is struggling to come up with material, asking why Trór Gravewater should be noticeably taller and heavier than other Dwarrow can give them a few thousand words to divert into whilst thinking over the story’s next move.
In that spirit, I will show you a rough translation of all the notes I have in my collection about the different races of Kali-Yuga and how they differ. Differ both in function and abilities. Take note that these are only guide notes and not game design notes. None of the rules given here should be taken as absolute, especially since one of the spices of writing longform fiction is to turn characters into individuals.
The first race of Kali-Yuga we shall concern ourselves with in this writing is the Humans. Continue Reading
There are three basic types of scene other than exposition that are essential to any fantasy novel (or science fiction, or war, or spy, you name it). Battle scenes, if written well, can keep the writer going for as much as a tenth or even a fifth of the total length of their novel. But one of the big challenges of writing a battle scene, to put it simply, involves investing enough development in your characters to make your audience care about them. Exposition scenes are one way to make this investment. In fact, in the early stages of your story, they tend to be the only way. Explaining to your audience why it is that one character cares enough about the other to invest the time to get to know them helps the audience to care about that character enough to care when something significant happens to them. Telling the audience a story about why a character does what they do, and why they do it a certain way, is also a good way to deliver exposition. It is not enough to tell an audience that your veteran character is obsessive about washing himself. You have to explain that during, say for example the Battle Of The Sleeping Village, a particularly troublesome event resulted in him spending hours stuck inside the rotting carcass of a River Troll. Hence, he now washes his entire body in hospital-grade soap at least once after every time he spends a significant period of time outside of his home. Continue Reading
Sometimes, when I inform people that I speak to online that I am an aspiring author who still would like to find a break even though he has given up hope with much of anything else, I get asked what it is I write about.