Redheaded Neanderlady

Redheaded Neanderlady
This is a photoshopped version of something I found in National Geographic about the time I started researching

Thursday, October 2, 2008

October odds and ends and some good advice from Holly Lisle

As usual, I'm behind. I wanted to write about odds and ends, to begin October. Odds and ends about the writing process, for example. Well, it turns outn I'm not writing the "odds and ends" I thought I was going to be writing about! For one thing, I had an idea, right around the start of October, and now it's October 6, and I can't quite remember what the idea was, that I'd originally planned. That's because I couldn't find the time to write in The Writer's Daily Grind! Lesson one: if you have an idea about something --- for a blog or anything else ---write it down!. That's the only way to remember anything. Especially millions of brain cells later!

Which brings me to lesson two: the more you write, the more you find out about your characters. It's a growth process. Well, I learned something about my "antihero" character a few days back, when I started reading a book that has some of the same characters in it(iincluding the "antihero", who was a real person, but in the otherbook, he's just a stupid, well, idiot). His grandma was a (sort of) witch --- okay, I know what some readers may be thinking --- this is just in time for Halloween! But that wasn't my intention at all. A woman called Melusine is referred to on various occasions, and the legend current in the period my Great Medieval Science Fiction Masgterpiece With Neandertals takes place, she was supposed to be some sort of demonic witch. But the Dauarga(that's what the Neandertals in my story call themselves)know her as Mala, and her story was tragic. Well, by various means , the grandma is descended from Mala/Melusine and, well, by the time the "antihero" is old enough to be really conscious of her, she's thought to be kind of senile, because she tells wild tales. She also has, or had, a reputation as a "cunning woman", which is what they called witches at this time(mostly, these "witches" were left alone, because they knew something about herbs and healing). In any case, it partially explains the name of the character, and partly explains how he happens to be what I call a Conduit --- one who has Dauarga DNA in a certain combination, which is quite rare, and makes people unusually in tune with their surroundings, in a way(for good or evil, so to speak). This will not appear in my "Invaders" trilogy. It will come up in the prequel. For now, it just remains "backstory".

Finally, there is one more "odd or end", and that's the Holly Lisle website. She is a prolific writer who actually makes her living writing and believes in "paying forward" to other writers, published and otherwise. The other odd bit I was trying to find was something she wrote about style, and sticking to it, which I couldn't seem to locate. However, if you click on that website, you'll find a cornucopia of information, all of which is chock-full of really good stuff for any aspiring writer, at any stage of their writing process. And I'm only too happy to pass this information on.
Anne G

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