Archive for the ‘Beginning’ Category

As an apology to you all for my lack of attention to this blog and the fanpage, I have decided to give you all a preview of the work I have done on the Hourglass. It isn’t much, but, it’s something that I hope you all will enjoy!  

Warmest regards,

Trisha Ellen

The Past Trilogy, of the Past, Present and Future saga.

Book One: The Hourglass

By: Trisha Ellen

Chapter one

My life has been vast in many ways, ways that most who would read this document couldn’t truthfully understand no matter how many words I use. In this vast life I have but one first memory, and over the course of uncountable years no matter how many different people I speak to about this memory, it appears that even that is different then the standard.

I remember being safe, secure against some horrible fate. If I focus on this sensation, I am almost able to pick up the vibrations of sounds, like someone is talking to me– yet the words are always drowned out. I can smell the wild flowers of my homeland, one that I am doomed to never lay eyes on again. If I am very, very lucky, I can almost see the face of my elder brother so much younger then I know him in any of my other memories, watching me with a fearful expression in his silver eyes.

I don’t try to delve further into that memory and I have never questioned Raziel about this memory. I know from personal experience that remembering the land of our birth is quite hard, and often leaves those of our kind in a state of longing. A longing that leaves us utterly useless. For beings of our creation, this is not something that should ever be done.

I will only be doing so consciously this one last time; for I promised someone very close to me that I would put to record my life so that no one would ever make the same mistakes as we did again.

A great many years must have passed before I was aware enough to cement further moments into my memory. My next memory is both a pleasant memory for me, and the first time I became acutely aware that I was different from the rest of my kind.

I was dancing across the valley of souls, a flock of souls where following my progress across the flowers of their home. These flowers are not at all like the flowers of the mortal realm, these flowers were constructed out of the very universe and the closest substance that I have come across outside of Edan that could compare were prisms. Thousands upon thousands of flowers constructed from feather light prisms, flexible just like the flora and fauna in the mortal realms, soft to touch, and the smell indescribable.

To each Edanite, what we call ourselves in Edan, the look of a soul is different. For me, the souls were multicoloured butterflies each completely different and unique from one another. They were warm like a fire, yet cool to the touch. Unlike butterflies in the realms of mortal life, the souls laughed and sang songs like children everywhere. I remember spinning and spinning along with the souls, singing along to their songs. I remember Raziel watching me from the top of a hill waving ever so slightly as I called up to him.

Alas as the phrase goes, all good things must come to an end and that day they did. This was the first time I can recall being frightened. Fear was not something we learned in Edan, at least not often, and seldom from our own protectors. Many names have been given to them by many people, the most common I have heard uttered was archangel and so we shall call them.

Laughter and songs ceased as I looked up at my brother, his waving stopped as he stretched his pure white wings wide and swooped down into the soul valley. A hand dropped down on my shoulder and I felt a jolt of energy, raw power, much like being struck by lightning– in that single touch. I cannot recall if I cried out or not, but I would not be surprised to find I had. I turned to look into the coldest blue eyes I have ever laid my gaze upon. The Archangel Michael stood behind me watching me with an intent look to his features; one I couldn’t put a name to at the time, but can only now call bottled fury.

“She is not to be harmed, smite me if you will, but she is under the protection of the three mothers. You know this well captain.”

Raziel landed at my side, and I scurried behind his legs. I remember pressing my face to the back of his thigh so tightly I thought I would push out the other side. I peeked out from around his leg, looking up at the six winged angel. His wings where so large I thought he could block out the very sky of creation! His hair looked like spun strands of the sun, so bright it hurt to look at for too long.

“And no harm will come to her Raziel. So long as you love her she cannot be touched, and nothing can break that law. I was merely trying to figure out how this little abomination could garner your affection in the smallest degree. You are after all a soldier of Edan.”

His voice was so melodious, like the singing of a thousand songbirds all perfectly in tune. He was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen, and I can only wonder if that was part of my fear of him. I’ll never know.

“It is because I am a soldier of Edan that I can love her captain. That is something I fear you will never understand.”

“Perhaps, I was not created for love; I was created to protect this paradise. Keep her from the fields of souls Raziel, we cannot afford for her to rub off on them.”

Oh the bravery of youth, one does not step up to an arch angel, and declare you will not listen to their words, for their words are law second only to God’enra. Yet that was exactly what I did. I stepped around Raziel, my beloved brother, and looked up at this all powerful being.

“That is not fair! We play and dance together, and everyone is supposed to come to the valley! I didn’t do anything wrong! You can’t punish me for nothing!”

My brother, oh how much I owe him and cannot possibly repay. He placed his hand on my shoulder and put an end to my tirade. Michael stood looking down at me, a look I still haven’t figured out plastered on his features. Locked in his gaze as I was, I couldn’t move. Every part of me felt super heated beyond tolerance, yet chilled so fully that I started to shiver.

The angel took flight with out another word; the strength of his wings was so that it knocked me to the ground, though I would have ended up there regardless. With the sudden loss of that angels gaze, I felt as if I was emptied of everything that made me what I was.

“Roasha,” My brother said to me as he too slowly sat on the ground. “Listen to me dear sister, this is very important.”

I had never heard my brother speak to me so, and turned my attention from watching one of the many soul butterflies– to him. His silver gaze so caring looked down at me, and I wish I could see what he saw, what he placed his very existence in danger to protect. His blue-black hair shifted around his shoulders like the mane of a lion after he has fended off a powerful opponent.

“Roasha, you cannot speak to Captain Michael like that. He can keep you from the soul valley regardless of what the others say. He is one of our strongest guardians, and his words are to be heeded without question. Do you understand me?”

I nodded that I did, despite the fact that I didn’t quite understand why he had banned me from the valley.

“Why did Michael call me an abom-i-nation?” I questioned of my brother, believing that he had all the answers. I didn’t get an answer that day, but I did for the first time see a look of sadness on my brother’s face.

I remember sitting up on my knees for how short I was, and reaching my hand up to place it on my brothers cheek. So soft and still childish then, yet it held the edginess that he would quickly grow into as the years passed.

“Don’t be sad Raziel; you don’t have to tell me if it hurts.” I said to him, honestly not wanting to ever hurt my brother. His larger hand pressed my hand harder against his cheek, and a smile graced his lips. The look in his eyes spoke of nothing more then pure love, the kind of love that could move mountains with its sheer power.

“I am not sad Roasha.”

That was the first time my brother lied to me.

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Creating The Face

Posted: February 27, 2013 in Beginning, Characters, Help, Writing
Tags: , , ,

character traits

This is the second installment of my advice to Character Troubleshooting.

So, You’ve thought about the setting of your book (This includes but is not limited to, the era of your novel– Is it based in history somewhere, is it present, or even future?); And you’ve even thought about what kind of character you want. (Are they Dynamic personalities? Flat? Round? Are they The Protagonist, Antagonist, Anti-Hero?) So, now that you know that, the next step is to create the FACE of your character.

I am sure by now a lot of you are reading this with a strange look on your own faces wondering what kind of drugs I am on. Honestly I’m not on any–  just hear me out.

The reason I say this is because a lot of Authors that I know, create their characters from the NAME down. To me, this is the HARDEST way to create a character, because what if your character doesn’t at the end of the day suit their name? All those hours looking for a name that you really like, and holds what you want, would then be wasted. (well at very least wasted in this effort– if you have characters, or names you like keep them handy you never know when they’ll be useful.)

Now that I have explained the why– lets get down to business.

First things first; What is your characters Ethnic Background?

This is vastly important to note, even if it’s to your self, because not everyone holds similar facial features. (Beyond that of two eyes, two ears, one nose and one mouth that is…) For instance, if your character is of an Asian ethnic origin, that will help determine they’re height, the average weight, their coloring. (Most Asian’s have dark hair, and dark eyes though this isn’t ALWAYS the case, especially with hair dye`s and contact lenses– but we won`t complicate things.)

So, go a head, pick your ethnic type. Here is a  page I have created as a Quick Reference to sites I find useful for all different types of references that don’t exactly fit into the other drop-down categories.

Lets take a second to list what we’ve done so far,

  • Thought about the setting (When/Where)
  • Thought about Personality Types
  • Role the character is to play in the story
  • Ethnic Origin of the character*.

Given all the information you have compiled for this character you can now:

  • Give a Height
  • Give a Weight
  • Body Type
  • Hair& Eye Color (With out worrying over Hair style or Contact lenses for a moment)
  • Give a Generalized Facial Profile (This is the height of cheek bones, Broadness of the Brow line, The Shape of the head Etc)

You have now built from the ground up, a person- and it’s easy to give a person a Name– Especially when you know what they’re like. It’s no different then giving your family members Nicknames– Only your character isn’t going to be named Marshmallow-butt.

But what about all that work in figure out the Personality Type?! 

This is a critical part of your character’s creation. It’s the Heart and Soul of the character as it where. This part of the process (done early on in the creation process) serves three roles.

  1. The Role: Establishing the importance of the character. It’s important to know where your character is going to sit in the story line, as without knowing this you could wind up wasting valuable writing time making 500 characters that won’t be noticed in your book for more then a few lines. If this character your creating isn’t going to be important in the current book your writing, then it’s alright to blur the image of the character for the reader– after all you don’t want to confuse your readers with useless information. Too many names creates chaos.
  2. The Presence: Given the personality type you have chosen, this enhances the presence of your characters. Are they the calm silent type? Possibly a soldier? Well if they have a scar on their face– or a noticeable limp, this is a good way to give Back ground AND add to the Basic profile of your character.
  3. The Naming Process: With all the information on the personality type of your character, you have narrowed the list of names for your characters. From Personal experience, And reading experience  I have found that the personality more often then not goes along with the name. In other words, since you now know the way your character thinks (given the personality) you can choose a name that summarizes the character. For example  a character who is a pacifist, or even maybe a coward probably shouldn’t have a name that reflects being a warrior.

Just one last note on Name’s, Remember how I mentioned that the Ethnic Origin of your character can help you pick your character’s name? Well for Instance, if your character hails from japan- then your character isn’t likely to be named Elizabeth. Yuki is a more likely name. You can find a number of Helpful links to find names in My Names Page.

If your having trouble finding a name, you can apply all the different tactics that I gave you in my post Pen Names R Us. All those tactics apply to any naming endeavour that you may find along the road of your own writing. Best of Luck!~

Don’t forget to comment down below, and let other readers know what you have done to create your characters.

Always Writing,

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Often times I am asked by people– how do you come up with so many different characters with so many personalities. My answer is usually given with a smirk and/or chuckle:

Because I have so many wonderful people running around my head.” 

Never am I taken seriously with that statement– yet here’s the irony. Despite the chuckle or smirk, I am being 100% serious.

Every day we come into contact with several different personalities, some unable to be placed in a category. Friends, Family, Teachers, Peers, Co-workers, Editors, Publishers, Random people at the train station asking for a lighter, or just wondering what time it is. Our lives are constantly looking at different people– yet when we authors try to write– all we see is a school of oddly dressed fish. Zero personalities stand out to be remembered.

When we try to pull up the images in our minds of how someone stood, they’re composure etc, they end up as faceless bodies– or i could just be completely way off– after all aren’t all Authors hermits that hide in the houses and sleep during the day writing fervently at night. Burning the mid night oil as the phrase goes.

Well, in my case, this author doesn’t have the luxury or the funds to burn any oil– there for i have to work at a “real-job” to bring home the bacon. So that forces me to be out in the general public– maybe more often then i’d like to be. However, that doesn’t mean i have an eidetic memory; I’m not Dr. Spencer Reid from Criminal minds.. far from it. Heck I sometimes forget which direction to go in the local mall, and wind up having to walk Around the outside to figure out where I am going.

So how is it that i remember actions, reactions, and even more difficult, Personality traits.

Well, I don’t– at least not in the sense that you may be thinking. Let me explain;

I first use the scene setting as my first clue to what is going on.

  1.  Train station? I have a couple thousand of those trips,
  2. High school– I spent four years there, and had the rather agonizing experience of going to four DIFFERENT high schools.
  3. Your character at a dance club?
  4. Police station?
  5.  Hair dresser?
  6. Mall (of any size or shape)

I try to stick to where i have been, and what I have done ; drawing off of my own personal memory for the setting. This allows me to fill in the background noise, the faceless mash of the crowd, and even the description of the scenery it self. It’s always a lot easier to write about somewhere you have been, then somewhere you would like to go. (You can also always expand on this later.)

“But that doesn’t help me create a character from scratch! Why is your title so misleading!

Don’t fret, I was getting there. The reason why i listed setting first, is before you have a character you should at very least have an idea about what you want to write– what kind of story, and what scene’s (or places) are you going to most likely find in said story. You don’t have to have a complete plot web (indeed if you do, then you already have a character{or 12}– and all you need is a name.).

We’re talking the bare bones here. Okay, now the next question is, what KIND of character do you want?

  1. Dynamic
  2. Static
  3. Round
  4. Flat
  5. Stock

Are they going to be:

  1. Major or central characters
  2. Minor characters
  3. Protagonist –
  4. Antagonist
  5. Anti-Hero
  6. Foil
  7. Symbolic

These are important questions to ask, because once you know the answers to these two questions, then you know how much detail you need for this character– are they nameless and just in passing; Eg, the jerk that rams into your self conscious Protagonist, knocking him/her to the ground? Are they the Main Antagonist who is going to be the subject of the Self couscous shy Protagonist’s torment in the book– Are BOTH characters Rounded? Dynamic? Are the polar opposites? Are they two-bit players in a larger pond that has nothing to do with them?

Just like every person is Different, every character should reflect that in fiction. Not everyone falls into the stereo types, BUT there are enough people in the world to make the Stock “Mad Scientist” Scheme a viable option.

Before you get all tangled up in the Creation of your character- Name Age, DOB, DOD, Height Weight, Ect ect ect. Ask your self the above, and figure out which number applies to your character. That Will make it a crap tone easier to figure out the next step. (Post to come soon)

(For those of you who do not remember these terms presented from high school– or are still new to the writing game Check out my New Page “What the Heck are These” )

So, I know I haven’t been very active in the online writing world for a while. Well here is another reason (see Excerpt for the first I have given). I have found, quite literally, an instructional DVD called Budokon: Flow and Flexibility. Now I won’t lie, It follows the new-age trend that has hit in the last 5-10 years, but that’s a-okay with me; I quite enjoy “New Age”. With that being said, it takes three of my personal interests/passions and merges them in to an hour exercise program that is quite fun.

Now if your not a fan of Yoga, or meditation, then feel free to skip this entire blog post– however, if your interested or practicing/learning any martial arts, then stick around (Even if Yoga and Meditation make you want to go to sleep.)

A little background before we get into the nit and grit.

I have always held an interest in Yoga, though until recently I haven’t really looked at classes or even free tutorials online. Shame on me I know.

However, one morning, I decided hey what the heck I’ll give it a go, and looked for yoga for beginners on the good ol’ youtube. What I found was a wonderfully relaxing ( And helped me cut back on smoking.) full class of what is called Hatha Yoga Flow from a Yoga class company called Yogayak. However, I quickly lost interest in this style of Yoga, and just stopped practicing it. Why? Because i didn’t feel like i was gaining anything accept the feeling that i had slept in. My flexibility wasn’t showing any signs of improvement, nor was my endurance because it was all slow flowing and typical yoga. Which is fine, it’s just not for me.

Then I came across this DVD I mentioned earlier.

 Now, don’t think that if you run out and pick up this DVD (which I strongly suggest you do) that it’s going to be a walk in the park– because it’s not, let me tell you.  This style combines Yoga, Martial Arts, and Meditation to give you not only a renewed sense of self movement, and achievement  but also strength.

The first time i tried this DVD (Which comes with tutorials of how to do the moves in the practice) I was sweating buckets, and wondering if my heart was going to explode through my rib cage and make quite the mess. You Begin with a 5 minute seated meditation, and then jump right into the program. Though out this program you do a lot of back exercises, My personal favorite is the Dancing dog– Very interesting movements and stretches (makes me feel like I am dancing). But then, oh boy, you get into the martial arts side of the program. Lunges  Knee strikes, Front kicks, Blocks, Warrior poses (ALL OF THEM) and even side punches, and forward strikes.

Then you go through a couple cool down stretches, and another 10 minute seated meditation. The flow from yoga to Martial arts, is so fluid that it’s hard to tell at times what is YOGA and what is Martial arts… okay you can clearly tell what is martial arts, but my point is, you don’t realize how easily they are able to interconnect until you at least TRY this DVD.

Now, remember how I was saying that through the Hatha Yoga Flow, I felt no improvement? This is over the course of TWO WEEKS.(or was it three?) With Budokon, it took me ONE week to be able to get through the DVD, and when i did get through it (still panting and sweating buckets) I felt a sense of accomplishment that i haven’t felt in a very long time.

You really notice the difference, and yet, as you work through it, your finding ways to correct yourself, and it becomes once again a difficult process to keep up with. This in my opinion, is a good thing, Cuts back on plateaus (If you have ever tried to lose weight, or watched the show biggest loser– then you know that is when your body just stops losing the weight, or even stops creating muscle because it has become to accustomed to the motions.)

I really LOVE this DVD, and good news for me, is when I don’t need the DVD anymore, to run through the reps, there are two more that i can choose from in order to expand my learning.

The added bonus of this collection, is I am also doing research for a few of my characters for a secret project I am working on (a pet project if you will); But enough of my shameless free advertisement– Just take my word for it, Go right now, get this DVD where ever you can, and give it a try.  I love it. (And I am almost certain that you will too.

(Almost) Always Writing,

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P.S. I Promise, Next time I post– It will have more basis on the writing side of my life.

Hello everyone, I figured since i have been on this blog for a couple weeks now, and my silence over the last couple days has barred fruit I’d share some of it with you dear readers.

Welcome to the excerpt of “The Hourglass”

[preface]

The three sisters sat around the fountain of life. A spinning wheel whirring away as one spun the thread on the wheel, another measured its length, and finally the last sister snipped and gathered the thread. Silence reined the blackened area around the three sisters, yet they heard everything in existence all the same. The deities of fate and destiny, called by many names by many people. These three ruled even the gods.

As if one, they lifted the thread from the wheel, each taking their sections with delicate fingers. They walked slowly away from the fountain; quickly it was absorbed by the darkness that surrounded them. All too soon, a large hourglass stood before them; carved out of the finest of materials found in the realms of gods.

Atropos- third of the sisters lifted the top of the hourglass, slowly taking her section of the bundle she slid it into the container. As she let go of the thread, it started to thrum in time with a heart beat. That beat echoed through the vast silence.

Lachesis- second of the sisters removed the ‘reed’ from the length of thread, guiding it further into the hourglass. As she too stepped away from the thread it shimmered faintly a silver tone. The heart beat grew louder, fluttering.

Clotho- the first sister stood before the hourglass. Her spindle still clutched in her ebony fingers. She took a slow breath as she let the spindle drop into the hourglass. She reached up and closed the lid.

Three hands rested on the top of the hour glass. No words where spoken, yet a blessing passed. The hourglass began to hum. Vibrating, the ‘glass’ singing a high note through the vast emptiness. The thread brightened within as if silk touched to flame, yet -nothing burned. A dragon’s head and feathered wings where etched into the top half of the hourglass by an unseen hand.

As if in response, the room filled with the resonance singing of uncountable hourglasses, their inner threads all glowing the same silver colour. Suddenly as if it had never happened, the hourglasses blackened and became silent once more. Not even an echo remained from their singing.

Only the distant sound of the spinning wheel could be heard in the void of the fates.

I hope you enjoyed this (first) draft preview of my new fantasy novel, The Hourglass.

If you did enjoy this, Please remember to Like my fan-page at www.Facebook.com/TrishaEllen You can also follow me on twitter @TrishaEllen1. Or you can always do the one step method– On the left hand side bar!

Writing Always,

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fry hair pulling

Have you ever felt a little like this guy?

Well I sure have, at times the whole process of plotting and organizing a story line– even if it’s just for one character and chapter of a novel is at times more then a little frustrating. If you know where this cartoon character is from, then your probably looking at this post with slight disdain – because lets face it Fry isn’t exactly a literary genius. Which is the point.

Not everyone can be a literary genius, but even those who are considered the high honor of genius– well they usually look like that guy more often then you would think. writing isn’t simply stringing words together to form a sentence.

-Okay technically it is, but that doesn’t mean it’s written well.  Isn’t that the whole goal of (most) authors? To string those perfect words together to make the perfect sentence, further strung together to make the Perfect story.

Regardless of everyone telling me that Perfection doesn’t exist, I Still strive for it every time i write my novels. Then once i have gotten to a point where i feel comfortable with it (or the rare times i am bouncing because of muse co-operation), I set it down and move on to something else.

Eventually one has to re-read what was written, either to make positive of the position in the time line- or to pull a minor reference from that writing. Sometimes it still feel like 100$….

Other times– I look at the page with this look of utter confusion only to suddenly explode into animation much like our friend fry up top.

What The Heck Was I Thinking?! ” Is usually growled, groaned or even yelled at the top of my lungs, following the self condemnation and avoiding burning the evidence of my none-genius, I force myself to breath and take a second cringing look at what i wrote.

Sometimes I can salvage something from that passage– most times it winds up in the compost heap of crunched cyber paper.

Fry: ‘Take that one, and that one. This sentence I don’t understand, but take this one.’

 

So that’s one way I fell like fry, the after effect as I call it. Then there’s the plot effect– trying to decide which characters do what…. again an apt Fry Quote.

Fry:”The lizards..no the parrot..no wait, the lizards, no, yes, no, yes yes yes…the parrot!”

There isn’t a heck of a lot one can do when they are feeling a little like fry, accept maybe walk away from the writing and take a moment to compose yourself. Or You could just go with it– because sometimes very rarely magic happens when you feel like fry. And even if it doesn’t– at least you can laugh about it later.

Always writing;

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hello_my_name_is_One_of_a_Kind

So you gone through the painstaking process of doing your research, and agonizing over what your new writing identity will be– it’s important because it is going to be your Identity for the entire time of your writing endeavours. (That’s not to say you can’t have more then one pen name– but we won’t go there today lets allow your brain to settle on this new name first).

A lot of people once they have a pen name don’t know how to check the originality of their chosen name. Of course this is a must, after all, you can’t have Two Nora Roberts writing out there– it would get confusing. So there are a few ways to check your pen name:

Amazon Logo

This is a great place to start. Amazon.com has a listing of nearly, if not, ALL the book listings ever created. You can type in your chosen pen name in the search bar and if “NO RESULTS” come up for that search: THIS IS A GREAT SIGN– but don’t get too excited.  You still need to check another source:

google_logo_41

Do a second search using good old fashioned Google! If you don’t get anything dealing specifically with writing then you should be in the clear– but if you want to be sure you should try doing a basic search on:

Facebooklogo And

twitter-bird-callout

If nothing comes up– no fan-pages and no twitters…

Then Stake your claim! 

Create that first FAN PAGE, and TWITTER account, Make a personal Email for your Authorship, that way you can keep real life and Writing separate. The reason for this is you are effectively creating a cyber paper trail to prove your writing identity– should the issue arise.

I have heard that you can make your pen name more concrete by registering your name as a business– which then places a trade mark on your pen name– however this could have complications as it may change how you do your taxes and other aspects of your legal standing so i would strongly suggest speaking to a TAX expert and/or a lawyer before proceeding with that extra step.

Once your done– congratulations you have created a new personality for your writing! Welcome to the world of authorship!

I hope this short and bitter sweet post has been helpful to you~ I had to figure all this out more or less by my self; my biggest help (besides the internet) Was my good friend and Fellow Author Fox R. R. Haddock who helped me through the basics and introduced me to Doutrope. So a great big shout out and thank you to Fox for all her help and friendship.

Writing Always:

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