I’m aware that I’d tell you that my life–especially my “day job” gets in the way of my writing…which can be true time wise… and which in a another very fundamental way is far from the case. I can give you an example. The other day I was talking to someone who was saying how the only way to farm these days(to essentially do what you love, as the only reason you’d actually farm now is that you can’t imagine doing anything else)… is to keep track of the bottom line, that is to focus on the money, and how to make whatever profit you can; otherwise, you’ll go under. And that interaction helped me to get on with my writing, and to create the character I needed to move on in my novella.
I was at a point in my novella, where Connie, the protagonist, having entered the 17th century fantasy hero of Xavier, is about to enter the land that she could rightfully inherit. She needs Xavier’s help however as the antagonists– the corrupt Prince Rainier, and the powerful Leblanc– are also making a claim on the land. The land is being farmed by a group of peasants that have no real say in the matter; and who Connie feels really own the land. But their only hope to stay on it is if Connie’s claim is accepted. They are also suspect as their land is at the edge of the Agincourt kingdom, and they are thought to be under the influence of some Guian traditions–the Guians being a defeated enemy whose very existence was seen as threat to Agincourt.
So Connie and Xavier–with their guide Bre’en–were about to enter “Connie’s” land. And I didn’t have a real focus…until I thought of a character, Joachim. Joachim is one of the peasants; but he is one who leaves, who lives in the outside world…Connie get a brief glance of him riding on top of LeBlanc’s carriage before encountering him in his homeland (thus his association with one of the antagonists)…and sure enough when she meets him in his homeland, she is wary of him. And not without reason… To quote from the story, beginning when Jochaim addresses the people:
” I,Joachim, am one of you. I have seen the larger world, studied their ways. We can’t stay here. We barely feed our families. Whatever we sell to Agincourt brings in less and less!” He pauses. “They want our land. Let them take it. It is of no use to us anymore!”
People begin to mutter among themselves. Bre’en puts up her hand as she stands up to speak.
“Use to us? Is our land—a thing to be tossed away on a whim? Is it not part of us, as we are part of it?’…”
Xavier then steps in with the traditional Agincourt position–that the land belongs to Connie, whose cause he will champion…pulling away for the moment from Joachim, who I have other plans for…
And so as I often find–the inspiration that I need comes from the world around me, as I seek to write about themes that I care about in this genre
Just some thoughts
P.S. Often my biggest headache in putting out some writing is formatting…and so today–try as I might I can’t seem to get the quotation marks before “I, Joachim” to go the right way. I’m sure it’s something small but right now I’m driving myself crazy by trying to change it…so I’ll leave it for the time being…M.C.