Battle Song Q&A — An Introduction to My Current Novel

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Sorry this post has been so late in coming! It’s mostly because I feel like I haven’t really made significant progress on Battle Song. I’m in the middle of scene 10 (out of 64), and I’ve written just over 11,000 words. I love my outline, and I love the story, but I still find it hard to actually sit down and write.

But here I am to talk about my novel! In a nice Q&A format that I made up myself.


So…what’s it about?

Good question. It should be easy to come up with a blurb, with all the planning I’ve done, but I still can’t come up with something I’m satisfied with. I’ll keep trying, but here’s what I have for right now:

Amrya il Osamarii is trapped in tradition. Forced to fight and kill, she longs for something besides the ceaseless battles and bloodshed of the mers. Something more. Something like the humans.

After the pain and conflict become too much, she risks all that she has in order to become human–only, the humans aren’t anything like she dreamed. Forced to fight in a war, she continues to seek for peace.

But how can it be found, when forgiveness is impossible?


Where did you get the idea for Battle Song?

This is actually a long story.

If you’ve been following me for a while, you might have noticed that Battle Song has evolved a lot.

My very first idea was written down at school, I think. I don’t remember where I got it from, but I had the idea that “the little mermaid trades her beauty instead of her voice”. I was tired of love at first sight, and I wanted a story where people fell in love for someone’s personality, not just how they looked.

Then other stuff got added in, such as warrior mermaid clans and fabulous princes. I became especially fascinated with the mentions of religion in the fairy tale, and I decided that religion would be an important part of the story.

(If you haven’t heard, in the original fairy tale, the merfolk don’t have immortal souls, but the humans though. When the little mermaid becomes human, she has to marry the prince, so that their souls can become one and she can live forever.)

Unfortunately, as I continued to develop it more, I found that both of these aspects became less prominent. I still would love to address the religion aspect as it relates to marriage more in Battle Song, but it just doesn’t work. The conflict just doesn’t work.

When I wrote (or, more accurately, started) Battle Song 2.0, I touched on some really great conflict at the beginning. However, I didn’t realize how important that conflict was at first, still thinking that the main issue of the story was marrying the prince, like the original fairy tale.

Then I began the Snowflake Method, and I realized that the real conflict of the story was about war, forgiveness, and hope. So the conflict became much more internalized–and much more complex, which is awesome and what makes it so exciting!


Who are the main characters?

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From left to right, we have Malena, Rhysdan/Rhys, Amrya, and Aeren.

Although I’d say Amrya is the only actual main character, the others do play their roles. (Plus, I drew this before the others became less important, so that’s why they’re all on there.)

Amrya il Osamarii–

In one word, I’d say she’s conflicted. Throughout the entire story, there are so many different things pressuring her. But she’s also determined and loyal, which is why she’s so great.

Prince Aeren li Sannave–

Aeren is just…awesome. Okay, I’ll come up with a better word. He’s tender. But he’s not necessarily weak; he’ll also fight for those he loves.

(And no, the pineapple shall remain mysterious.)

Princess Malena il Althair–

Malena is a princess from the neighboring island of Sannave. She’s perceptive. And she’s surprisingly kind for who she is and how she grew up, which is awesome.

Prince Rhysdan li Sannave–

Yes, Rhys and Aeren are brothers. Rhys is older. Rhys is resolute. He’s willing to do whatever it takes to keep Sannave and his people safe. Even if that means doing something good. Definitely an ends justify the means kind of guy.

There’s also another awesome character, but he doesn’t have a name yet, so I won’t introduce him. (I also don’t know all that much about him, but he is awesome.)


What do you think will be your favorite part to write?

Oooh, I have several. Of course, I can’t tell you about any of them because of spoilers, but…scenes 37-38, 46-47, 54, and 60 will be quite fun. *grins evilly*



What are your thoughts?

What do you think about Battle Song? Do you have any ideas on how the blurb could be improved? What questions would you add to the Q&A? I’ll try to answer them, if they’re not spoilerous. (Just so you know, spoilerous is probably the best writing word ever. It’s just so fun to say! Spoilerous!)

Oh, and do you like fairy tale retellings? If so, which ones are your favorites?

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Beautiful People: Parental Edition (with Aleria, Iris, and Garic)

PAPERFURYThis month’s Beautiful People interview is about parents! The character we shall be talking about today is Princess Aleria of Esclia, whose parents are Iris and Garic, so basically I’m just talking about Iris and Garic anyway. See how clever I am, talking about what I’m currently working on?

If you missed my excerpt with Iris and Garic, you can check it out here (Spotlight #5: Iris) and understand why I’m casually just fangirling over my own characters…

Beautiful People is a monthly character interview hosted by Cait @ Paper Fury and Sky @ Further Up and Further In.


Now for the questions!

  • Overall, how good is their relationship with their parents?

Pretty good. Garic and Iris both try to be close to their daughter, but they also try to protect her from a lot of things, which causes some tension. They’re also gone a lot and it’s hard for Aleria to always communicate with them, but she does know that they care about her.

  • Do they know both their biological parents? If not, how do they cope with this loss/absence and how has it affected their life?

Yes, she does.

  • How did their parents meet?

Well, this is the story that I’m writing currently, so I could give you the very in-depth version, but in short, Iris is famed to be “the prophetess of Eyspar” and Garic comes to her for help because he’s the prince and he’s afraid someone wants to kill him.

  • How would they feel if they were told “you’re turning out like your parent(s)”?

Aleria would get that warm, fuzzy feeling inside because she admires her parents, especially her mother. She wants to become like them, and if she were told that she was, she’d be thrilled.

  • What were your character’s parents doing when they were your character’s age?

Well, Aleria’s story starts when she’s younger than Garic and Iris are in their story, so nothing extremely exciting. Garic was doing princely things, like preparing to come of age and being tutored in all sorts of things and trying to deal with his father’s remarriage. Iris was probably embroidering pillows and starting to look for suitors and being dragged on adventures with Rosie and Samuel.

  • Is there something they adamantly disagree on?

Garic and Iris trust their adviser, but Aleria does not, and in fact does not like him at all. She wants them to get rid of him, but they won’t, and she doesn’t understand why.

  • What did the parent(s) find hardest about raising your character?

Raising her to not thinking that she could have whatever she wanted…which they didn’t exactly succeed at. She’s the princess and the only child, and she did get what she wanted. But they did manage to raise her to be kind, which was a partial success.

  • What’s their most vivid memory with their parental figure(s)?

Aleria remembers more with Iris, I think, and there’s not specifically one that stands out more than the others. She loved to sit and watch her mother embroider in the night, by light of a candle, humming…

  • What was your character like as a baby/toddler?

Adorable but willful. She liked to get into things she wasn’t supposed to, but you know, with that innocent smile and chubby cheeks, how could one be angry with her?

  • Why and how did the parents choose your character’s name?

Aleria is Garic’s mother’s name, and she was awesome. They wanted Aleria to grow up as strong and gentle and royal as she was.


Also!

Because I love you, when I was supposed to be writing yesterday, I made a Pinterest board about my story with Garic and Iris. There are adorable pictures & mysterious captions and little quotes from the story, so check it out and tell me what you think!


let us talk!

What are your thoughts? What would you ask Aleria, Iris, or Garic if you could ask them one question? What are the best kind of parents in books/in real life? If you did this Beautiful People interview, link me to your post!

The Liebster Award

By my order, this week is decreed The Week of Blog Tags, in which I shall gift you with a blog tag each day (in an attempt to finish all the ones I have been tagged for). Therefore, I shall not tag anyone, else there be a multitude of tags. If you wish to be tagged, you are! Thus ends the decree.


Sorry for not posting yesterday, or the day before! My sincere apologies. Also, this is the last blog tag I could find that I was actually tagged for personally, but I swear there was at least another one. So if you remember tagging me for something and I haven’t done it yet, please let me know!

Anyhow, I’ve seen this tag around a lot and was quite pleased to be tagged for it by Kellyn Roth @ Reveries. Thank you!

Rules:

  • Acknowledge the blog who nominated you and display the award.
  • Answer the 11 questions given to you.
  • Share 11 random facts about yourself.
  • Nominate 11 bloggers that have less than 200 followers who you think deserve this award.
  • Let the bloggers know you have nominated them.
  • Give them 11 questions to answer.

Kellyn’s Questions:

  • When did you start blogging? Why?

I started blogging around last December, mainly because a few of my NaNo friends had blogs and I thought it would be fun. One thing led to another and here I am now!

  • What were/are your original blogging goals?

My original blogging goals were mainly just to keep this blog going and not stop, and just have people read it. So, so far I’ve achieved them, haha!

  • Are you a fan of potato chips?

Ooh, yes. I probably shouldn’t be, but they’re so good… I especially love barbecue potato chips.

  • Do you enjoy singing? Are you a good singer (by your own estimate)?

I love singing, and I’m in choir at my school. Music is a big part of my life and though I haven’t posted about it recently, I do have a few posts. My singing and music is one of the reasons why this blog is called The Music of Words. I’m a decent singer, but I’m not very good at soloing and there’s always room for improvement. I’m taking voice lessons this summer, though, so hopefully I’ll be improving!

  • Do you ever sew? Knit? Crochet? Enjoy any of those activities?

I’ve sewn quite a bit since my mom loves to quilt, and I’m working on a quilt right now (though I’ve been procrastinating a bit… *coughs*). I’ve tried knitting once but have never done anything with it since. But I love to crochet, and I usually crochet all of my friends’ birthday presents, which is fun. I love being able to create adorable things, and also customize the patterns to make them specific to my friends and what would make them the most happy.

  • Does it snow a lot where you live? Do you enjoy it?

Yep, during the winter! I enjoy it for the length of December (and it had better snow on Christmas…or else) but afterward it just gets cold and I don’t enjoy it much. It’s super pretty though and I love looking at the intricate snowflakes if you can catch them just right.

  • Does your laptop run out of batteries easily?

Ehh…not really. It takes several hours, at least, but I never really pay attention since I’m almost always sitting next to a place where I can plug it in.

  • If you could time travel, where would you go?

Ooh, fun one. I usually say back to around 30 A.D. so that I could meet Jesus Christ in person… It would be fun to go back to lots of different times though, and I would love to see what life is like.

  • What’s the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?

Say a prayer and read my scriptures.

  • What’s the last thing you do before you go to bed at night?

Check my email and turn on Pandora so I can listen to music while I fall asleep. 🙂

  • What’s your least favorite color? Why?

Hmm…as a color, I don’t really like black. It looks good if you pair it with other stuff, but just on its own it’s not very exciting.

11 Facts About Me:

  1. Along with crocheting my friends’ birthday presents, I also write them cheesy poems that generally flow really badly but are fun.
  2. I don’t like wearing shoes and would prefer to wear none at all–or flip flops if at all necessary.
  3. I like mechanical pencils better for all purposes than ones you have to sharpen.
  4. I know a little bit of Spanish (but only a little bit).
  5. love to eat bread (though with plain white bread, it has to be homemade). If you give me a loaf of sourdough bread, a book, a notebook, and some orange juice, I will be totally satisfied.
  6. I also love Thai food, and curry is amazing. If you’ve never had it, you should.
  7. I have never had braces and will probably never need to. (I have had retainers, though.)
  8. I’m the middle child in my family.
  9. I love to learn about cultures and religion and would happily talk to anyone about their religion. I just think it is so fascinating to learn about.
  10. I’ve actually filled up an entire notebook with stuff (two, actually). I was so proud of myself…but I have about 30 other notebooks full of halfway-filled randomness. 😉
  11. I’m in the color guard of my high school marching band.

Tags:

Ha, I don’t have to think of eleven people to tag, because it’s the Week of Blog Tags! If you want to do this tag, you can! Remember, the only stipulation (what a fun word) is that you have to have less than 200 followers.

Questions:

  1. How long have you been blogging for?
  2. What do you think is your greatest blogging achievement?
  3. What do you want to be when you grow up? Or, if you are grown up, what are you?
  4. Who is your favorite book character and why?
  5. What is the funniest tradition you or your family has?
  6. Are you going to be celebrating the 4th of July? What will you be doing?
  7. What book or movie has made you sob?
  8. What is the best chocolate you have ever had?
  9. What is your favorite fruit?
  10. Do you think you would ever switch to using the Dvorak keyboard? Why or why not?
  11. What is the worst picture you have ever drawn? (Pictures are appreciated! 😀 )

P.S. Guess who remembered…today…that Camp NaNoWriMo started…today? *points at self* How many of you are doing Camp NaNo? What is your project about, and how far are you into it by now? I want to hear about it!