While writing the sequel to 'Defenders of Rades', I had to go back into this manuscript to include a few breadcrumbs. One in particular was Vitora's medallion. That piece of jewelry came much more important in the second book. I needed it to be some sort of symbol with for her, but one that could also be misunderstood by someone else. My friend Tara came up with the idea of a amphibian creature sitting on a leaf. It was perfect.
In honor of Father's Day, I credit my love of science fiction to my Dad. Both my parents were big readers. Daddy was a fan of Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, Ben Bova... There was always a sci-fi book laying on the coffee table and at some point, I started picking them up. Due to his illness, Daddy almost never left the house, but when Star Wars came out in 1977, he and I traveled 50 miles to see it in the movie theater. He loved it.
One of the ways I tried to make the character Vitora stand out from everyone else was through her speach pattern. Her dialog is very formal. She never uses contractions. This is not her native language. For ten 'years' she only had conversations with Ghyle. Her knowledge of his language mostly from formal texts. It was a challenge on occasion. Most people speak and write with contractions out of habit. I had to carefully proofread her dialog - but I wouldn't (<-- See?) be surprised to still fine one in there.
I've recently heard the characters Rayl and Dain compared to Merry and Pippin from Tolkien. I was quite surprised by that. The two hobbits had not entered into my mind at all as I developed these characters. Yes, they are friends. Yes, they are a bit mischieveous. But they are otherwise completely different from Tolkien's characters. I suppose I can see where a person could get the idea....sort of...
The description of Delph was obviously originally based upon Legolas. I've been in love with Tolkien's elf since I first read 'Lord of the Ring's in 1976. Although Tolkien never states Legolas's hair color, I always pictured him as a blond. Delph was the first character I ever created - sometime around 1980. He quickly took on his own personality - far different that Legolas - but I've never denied his origins.
The cute scene in chapter 22 with Dain and Galis is based on a true story. Several years ago, my hubby was sound asleep on a Maui beach. I woke him with an elbow to the ribs and whispered, "You really want to see this," as a blonde goddess strolled by in a yellow thong bikini. At dinner that evening, he mentioned the woman hadn't been wearing a wedding ring. I was pleased he had noticed she had hands. I commented that with her hair braided under her little hat, I thought she resembled Bo Derek. My sweet hubby of only 18 months turned to me with the blankest expression I have ever seen. "She was wearing a hat?" Apparently, his appraisal of her had not made it to her head. I laughed so hard that people across the restaurant turned to look at me. Now, whenever I point out a pretty girl, the first thing he says is whether or not she's wearing a hat.
The physical description of the character Vitora is based on my sister Cindy. She is four years older than me. To my mind, she has always been drop dead beautiful. She has never taken a bad photograph. She has the same emerald green eyes as our mother (and me). While in high school, she had curling dark hair almost to her waist. She was the county fair queen and our high school homecoming queen. The only difference is height. While Cindy is tall, Vitora is quite small. It's one more way to make Vitora different from the Endemi.
Geez...adding a 'Pin it' button to this website was a LOT more difficult than it should have been...
I had originally refered to the original race of people on Rades as Elves. The idea being that the humans found them similar to Tolkien's Elves and referred to them by that name. However, that name became very cliched over time and a new name for them was necessary. I played around with the word 'native' and coined the term Nativi only to have the movie Avatar come out with the Na'vi people. Seriously? Sigh. Back to square one, I used the word 'endemic' to coin the term Endemi. So far, I haven't found anything like it used anywhere else.
Anne-Marie Broughton has completed the portraits for all the main characters. She is simply amazing!!
Defenders of Rades is now being hosted on the main page of WAE Network!