Wednesday, December 10, 2014

A Song of GoT and Generators

Oh! Is it "Pretend I was writing" day already!?

As I forewarned, I wasn't going to be able to get much writing in before the end of the year. However, same deal as it has been for over a month now: brain has been brewing.

Thanks to a friend of ours, Hubby and I were able to finally watch the first season of Game of Thrones just before Thanksgiving. We loved it so much we quickly used Hubby's one birthday gift to purchase season 2. We plowed through the whole thing yesterday.

It wasn't as gore-filled as I expected, but it was as bloody, as foul-mouthed, and had way more nudity than anticipated. That aside, it really is an addicting story. You don't really know who to root for. There's backstabbing, allies actually secret foes the whole time, sweethearts becoming complete jerks, murderous villains becoming the heroes, hatred birthing love, and if all else fails, once you've chosen whom you wish to root for, they get killed off.

I know, I know, if I enjoy it so much, I should actually read the books. However,
  1. My reading list is already far too long.
  2. The book could ruin the series for me, but it's unlikely that the series could ruin the books aside from giving me images instead of letting my mind form them based solely on the words.
    • Actually, I think with such a large cast of characters it would be a LOT easier for me to picture the actors in my head instead of trying to start from scratch with a mental image and get all sorts of confused as to who is who.
  3. The man takes FOREVER to write! I don't wish to be like everyone else and wait a decade for the next book. I'm content only in waiting until we can buy the next season. I'll then wait until George R. R. Martin is either done or dead before I'll start actually reading the Song of Ice and Fire saga.
Aside from praising it, my point in even bringing up GoT is this: Martin took YEARS researching and world building. He has then spent nearly two decades in the world of A Song of Ice and Fire - almost 25 years if you count that he started writing the first book in '91. It may be confusing and hard for even him to keep track, but it is an intricate world as well thought out as Middle Earth or Narnia. Maybe even more so considering he has something like 250 characters to keep track of...

As much as I enjoy the series, I find myself entranced by the land. I never skip the phenomenal opening sequence; loving that it changes to showcase where the characters are going to be based in that episode's tale. I study the maps included in the season box sets; trying to memorize the layout of his two-continent world.

It drives me to get lost more in my own world, but more on that in a moment.

The show inspires my husband as well. Shows usually do; the really good ones anyway. He loves them so much he wants to be able to play in them. And play we usually do.

After watching X-Men: Evolution and a few other X-Men based cartoons, Hubby created the X-Future Play by Post forum roleplay game.

Now, he's working on a D&D adaptation of Game of Thrones. In truth, he's working diligently in making his own world and seven ruling families. He toiled away - doing little else - for about three days straight. He drew maps, named reigning cities and families. He came up with their family tree, sigils, and phrases/words-of-honor. He doesn't have seven like GoT does, but he does have a family for each of the six stats in D&D: Strength, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma. Each family has a bonus in one particular stat, dependent on the environment of that house. For instance, one family is the protector of the realm's largest university. Anyone in that family gets a familial stat bonus to Intelligence. Another rules over farmers and receives a bonus to their Strength. So on; so forth.

THREE DAYS my husband did this! Granted, it isn't as detailed as most fictional fantasy worlds, or the one I'm trying to build. Still, that's an impressive feat for someone who's unsure of his own storytelling abilities.

So, I now have yet another character to play with: Airis Castilien. She is the eldest daughter of the king and queen; heir apparent for about two years before her younger brother came along.

In the past my characters have been cold. They have been snarky. Most were sarcastic and witty. Some were bleeding hearts. All were generally "good" characters.

I'm switching it up with Airis.

Keeping true to GoT, I'm treating the eldest of royal birth as a bratty young woman with entitlement issues. Namely, the fact that she's the eldest child and yet her little brother gets to rule over her simply because she's a woman.

It is well known between her and her parents that she is now little more than their best bargaining chip. If their reign begins to wobble, she'll be married off as a peace offering. She is being groomed specifically for that purpose: the land's greatest and most coveted commodity, and possible bargaining chip to keep the Castiliens as the rulers of the realm. Airis has accepted that she'll never marry for love, but she sees her marriage as more of an investment than an olive branch. Her goal is to sway her parents in to allowing her to marry the perfect patsy. A man who has enough power that it would be deemed a good match by her parents; a man with enough pull that he could topple the kingdom if he wished; a man fooled easily enough that Airis could take rule from him.

She'll be sweet, proper, may even display herself as the damsel in distress in order to manipulate protection. She'll also be cunning as she craves power. She'll listen to every little whisper and follow every subtle plot. She will be patient, but she'll also be ruthless.

Most of all, if she doesn't get killed, she'll be tons of fun!

But let's backtrack to my world building. In order to help Hubby quickly build his own world, he searched for some fantasy name generators. He found a few that he could work with, but one in particular is now our new favorite.

It has a generator for nearly everything, including things like plant or food names, character descriptions, or even PLANET descriptions. You can practically write a short story using only this guy's generators.

I found it only mildly interesting at first as Hubby had me search for my character's name - I chose Airis because it's pronounced like heiress, and I couldn't resist. However, as he showed me all the other generators on the site - and I took a mini self-guided tour later - I realizes how fantastic this can be for breaking down my writer's block.

Here, check it out for yourself! I'm totally putting it on my Handy Links tab that I've neglected this year. This generator is a must-have for any stumped writer. That, or ones like me who are just really bad at naming things. Although, after names like Middle-Earth and Westeros, is Gyateara really that bad?

Anyway, not writing a fantasy? Writing a horror, historical, mystery, sci-fi, or futuristic tale? He's got generators for that too!

Just go ahead and check out the link: Fantasy Name Generators

I'm a kid in a candy store right now, and so I'm not really advancing anywhere in my world building at this point. I'm having too much fun seeing what the generators come up with. The closest I have is a spreadsheet of deity names and titles. I take the ones I like and just keep going. Eventually - perhaps in the next week or so - I'll narrow it down and start working on my pantheon again, but it's the first time I've really thought about it in months. I call that a victory.

Now, to try to help Ronoxym rekindle. Poor guy confessed that the only tales he has in his head right now are about Devon. I told him he can still write them out as non-canon tales or to tuck away for my comic reboot of X-Future. Not sure if he's alright with those options though. Maybe I can get him to co-write with me again, at least to get his creative juices reflowing.

We'll see what I can do.

No comments:

Post a Comment