Apr 6, 2015

Dear Writer (from Adair)

Dear Meri,
Oh! I get to be a POV character this time! Cool! I hope Gilly doesn't mind that you moved her plot into a later book, but... umm... this series is really supposed to be mine and you kind of had it planned so I wasn't a POV character in book two or three. I guess me and Blade can play Rock, Paper, Scissors to see who gets the third POV slot in book three since you only ever have three POV characters per book and the other two are already assigned. I think I might throw the game so she gets it- you have big plans for her in that book and I'm a pushover for someone I love. Besides, she always plays Scissors. It's not like throwing it in her favor will be hard. Just don't let on that I did it, okay? She'd cross her arms and glare at me and I hate when she does that.

I have a big question for you. How are you planning on having me develop as a person when you keep making me the damsel in distress? I spend more time unconscious, kidnapped, injured, and targeted than everyone else combined (excepting maybe Sol) and this is only book two in a series of more! I spent all of book one in some amount of pain or disorientation from my map, then spent the final battle with a sprained ankle. If it wasn't for Etch- and Sol's weird vacuum thing- the others would have had to rescue me at the end. (As it is, Etri technically did, but we worked together so that's okay.) I snuck a peek at your outline for this draft of book two and things aren't looking better. My first chapter starts with a flashback where Feren saves me from a rockfall. Then I'll get poisoned. Then Etri has to rescue me in a dashing feat of courage and gallantry. (Umm... I'm actually really flattered by that. It sounds romantic! Too bad I'm going to be unconscious for most of it.) Then Blythe has to de-poison me. Then I'm too oblivious to see that my ex-would-be-Sentinel is trying to get back with me and then back at me. Then my disguise gets blown and it ends up being everyone else who has a hand in bringing the bad guy to justice. Ick.

As Blade says: newsflash. (Wait, does that expression even work in our culture?) Just because I'm an artist doesn't mean I can't sometimes take care of myself. I know I don't have the smarts or the intuition of a Sentinel, but that doesn't mean I can't have good ideas, too. I mean, look at how well Etch and I did in solving book one's problem! Let me contribute something this time around. I'm the only artist who ends up with two Sentinels. Please make this be for reasons outside my control instead of because I'm so weak that the test goes against centuries of tradition to throw me a bone. Drop me into trouble where I need Blade and Etch- but keep me active rather than passive in solving the trouble. Don't get me wrong, I can still swoon over their protective traits. But... I'm a master artist, I have my own surname, and I found my two muses. These things mark me as a full, respected adult in my culture. I can do illusions that other Colorweavers have long forgotten, if only you'll let me practice more. I even have an imp's ability to steal the power of other Weavers. Not that I ever wanted this one, but I will work out how to control it so it doesn't control me. If I need help to figure it out, that's okay. I just don't want to be passive anymore. Let me be strong for Etch and Blade. For myself.

-Adair Travellarri

PS: Umm... you really need to update my name banner thing since at the end of book one I get my new surname. While you're at it, you should update Etri's. Blade hasn't decide what name she's going to go by yet. And for the Creators' sakes, can you figure out if Sentinel gets capitalized or not? It really shouldn't, unless it's being used as their title before their names. Other words with the same problem: master, docent, journeyman, and curator. Just thought I'd help by giving a list.

Apr 5, 2015

So long, old layout!

After quite some time of dragging my feet, I finally updated the layout for my blog. The old one served me well for many years and went wonderfully with the feel of my Messenger characters. The only problem was that I haven't written those characters since 2013. With my artists and carnival performers now residing in my head 24/7, it was time to give them a chance at a layout for this blog.

I picked out a few templates that were colorful and art-themed. When I couldn't decide on one, I asked my husband's opinion. He immediately pointed to this one and said "Go with that! It looks like Adair's!" He's right. All purples and blues and paint splatters- that's Adair, and since Adair is the character driving my current series... yup, it made sense.

I might still do some fiddling since I'm not sure how I feel about black text and I'm not sure if it's easy enough to figure out where the stories posted on this blog are located. (The link at the top of the screen gets you there.) I'm also going to eventually swap out the photo at the top of the blog with a drawing said husband does of the characters. Who knows when that'll be, though, so until then I'm using a picture of the dolls I made of the characters. This layout really is all about the new artist/carny crew!

Edit: And my share buttons seem to be gone, which is something I just noticed and don't like- I guess that's what I get for picking an outdated layout. Blogger shows them in the post settings, but I can't get them to show up in the actual layout. Nuts. That might actually mean I'll be changing the layout again at some point since aren't sites supposed to be all about social networking buttons? Then again, it's unlikely I get enough blog readers to worry about sharing since I can do that manually and I think I was the only one actually using those buttons, lol. This blog is a very solitary, quiet place. Just me and my characters, procrastinating and being silly. Who needs anyone else? ;)


Apr 3, 2015

Turning my words into art

I saw a link to Wordle and decided to try it out with the short story I wrote recently that goes along with the series I’ve been working on for a few years. The top image is from Wordle. Then I saw a link to Text Is Beautiful and decided to try that out, too- that’s the bottom one. I think I like the second one best because it eliminates a lot of superfluous simple words.

These came out pretty neat! I’m happy with the words it picked out, so I must have used them with the right frequency. There are only two characters in the story, so their names ended up super large. The plot is about an imp adjusting to human society, so “human” comes up a lot. “Feed” and “food” are because he feeds off of magic, which he calls “glow”, and come from mages, which he calls “sparklers”. He has a slight obsession with coins and words since both baffle him, so those came up pretty large. I also love that at least the second one got “fire” and “stage” because Firedrake is a fire dancer. Some of the smaller words in the second one is how Talan recognizes Firedrake: arms (tattoos- kind of surprised that word didn’t make it), hair, and voice, as well as Firedrake’s body language (eyes, hands, lips, and smile come up in the list). I’m glad it caught these because a big thing about Talan is how he’s terrible at telling humans apart- except for Firedrake.

I think the first one has “Firedrake’s” larger than “Talan’s” because I often use “Firedrake’s” instead of a pronoun. Drake’s pronoun is “they” in this story (although I think I’m using “ze” in the novels), so to avoid confusion with they-plural, I tend to use a name. Talan just gets “his”, so it made the instances of “Talan’s” less.

I picked reds for the color theme because Firedrake wouldn't let me have it any other way. Talan didn't care because he can only see the world in variations of greys. ;)