Sunday, July 02, 2006

At Present, It's Prologue

Well, I finished the scene I've been working on for Mages of Mâvarin. It still needs work, mostly because I have very little idea how to describe a swordfight on anything approaching a blow-by-blow basis. The ending is probably a little weak, too, but I'll wait and see what my beta readers have to say about that. Still, I've merged the two-year-old fragment with my handwritten draft (above) and finished it off. Overall I feel good about it. It gives the reader a concrete example of the kinds of troubles that beset Mâvarin as of the beginning of the book, establishes (sort of) who is doing this particular bad thing, and gets him out of the picture so his brother can take over starting in Chapter Two. What do you think of the first sentence?

Keni Tarso couldn’t help noticing that his father was trying to kill him.
--from Mages of Mâvarin

Rani Fost, when he was human.I can't decide whether I like that or not.

(And yes, I did watch Inigo Montoya fight Westley. It didn't help me at all. Plus the DVD refuses to play past the "head jiggle" on my laptop.)

This scene is something I resisted writing for over two years, and not just because I didn't know how to kill off Dendoris. I've spent years rewriting and tweaking the first scene in the book, which sends my protagonist, Rani, out into the world and into trouble. I wasn't at all sure I wanted to tack on a new beginning in front of it. I actually tried to paste the Keni and Dendoris scene in after the Rani and Carli one, but it really didn't feel right to have it there. So now, unless I change my mind again, Keni leads off the book. Then he's not seen again for 285 pages in this 1,200 page saga. Is that a problem? I'm not sure.


Days like this one make me wonder why we Tucsonans always long for the monsoon to arrive. It was hot and sticky all day, but it never did rain over my house. I was thoroughly uncomfortable in the alb this morning in church. It's only a light cotton thing over my sleeveless shirt, but even that's one layer too many in a church sanctuary that was probably 85 to 90 degrees. And I couldn't feel even a light breeze from the church's "swamp cooler." I don't know how the priests manage Tucson summers in their layers of ecclesiastical garments. I really don't.

Maybe it will rain here tomorrow. And yes, I am working on Monday.


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Bea said...

Regarding sword fights, you might want to watch some movies with sword fighting scenes, read books known for sword fighting scenes, then let your creative skills do the rest. Some recent movies that come to mind are Hidalgo, Lord of the Rings series, Pirate movies, Medieval tales, you can probably think of others. I've been reading the "Sword Dancer" series by Jennifer Roberson,and there's quite a bit of sword fighting in each volume, along with magic and mystical events. Short of taking fencing lessons, I wouldn't know what else to do unless you could witness a staged sword fight, like at Medieval Times or other dramatic reenactment. There is always your imagination! Bea

DesLily said...

I've never tried to write a sword fighting scene... I think mine would go something like this:

Clank, clank.... swoosh... clank... clank, clank, clank.... swish... clank, clank..

I'm sure you get the picture! lol

Becky said...

I've got the PERFECT sword fighting reference movie for you. The first Highlander film. There is loads of sword training. Good flick too. And I LOVE the first sentence. Makes me want to read more, that's for sure.

Carly said...

I am convinced I would never survive anywhere but the Bay Area. It has odd microclimates, but I don't mind that so much. It's the weather you guys have in Arizona that would make me wilt. Nope, "Californy is the place you ought to be." LOL