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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

more imagery from the story arc

At this point, I'm thinking that each world that Topaz visits on his Journey will get its primary inspiration from a particular song.

Opal:  Bring Me to Life,  by Evanescence

Sapphire:  Shut Up and Drive, by Rihanna
                Ordinary Day, by Great Big Sea
                Downeaster Alexa, by Billy Joel
                St. Elmo's Fire, by John Parr

Peridot:    Almost, from the movie Enchanted
               The Cup of Life, by Ricky Martin
               American Wake (The Nova Scotia set),  from Riverdance

Ruby:     Awake,  by Godsmack
             Return of the King, from the sountrack to the movie 300

Pearl:     Serenity, by Godsmack
             Moonlight Desires, by Gowan

Emerald:   Welcome to the Jungle, by Guns 'n Roses

Diamond:  ?

Aquamarine:    Pirates of the Carabbean, (nuff said)

Amethyst:   Take On Me, by A-Ha.

Garnet:     That Don't Impress Me Much, by Shania Twain

Turquoise:  Circle Game,  by Joni Mitchel

Topaz:     Wanted Dead or Alive, by Bon Jovi
               Firework, by Katy Perry

Now that I've captured this list, and can actually see it with my eyes, I understand why some of the story elements that I've imagined are not all that clear for me.  I need to get some powerful, image-ful songs in my head for Diamond, that's for sure.  We'll see.  This is a side thought for me, of course.  Still chugging away at the first one here. 
Morgan, the daughgter of a friend of the family, read the first few chapters, and liked 'em.  Being 13, she's the target audience.  Yay for me...I'm writting in a way that is accessible for the adolescent mind, so far.  Now to keep it up.



Saturday, October 8, 2011

Epiphany for me

Hello folks.  (warning: longish post here....sorta got away from me, but I'm leaving it.)
I type quietly in my brother Stephen's basement on the night before a big family feast.  The drive to Burlington was uneventful.  I taught my little 3-year-old cello student this morning, and was listening to music on my phone.  (I often do this, since many of the scenes which make up my stories were inspired by the imagery that songs in my eclectic collection grant me.  Doing this, I've acquired a taste for groups like Rob Zombie, Godsmack....who else...oh yeah...Evanescence.  The modern cultural context aside, contemporary music is written to capture raw and un-namable emotions that society is trying to cope with silently.  I guess that all my musical training has left me somewhat aware of that level of music.  I listen to the Emotional content...and that allows me to bypass the words now and again.  It's all very esoteric of me, I know, but I've read about established authors drawing inspiration from a wide variety of sources.    You all know my background, so I'm sure that all this comes as no surprise to you.  ;)

     So, as I was saying, I was listening to Rihanna's Shut Up and Drive, seeing Topaz/Elpis at the beginning of his Academy Journey on the Sapphire home world.  He's found a friend by the name of Sapphiro, and this leads to his helping that world.  But his new friend is not allowed to participate in a race that occurs annually there...very prestigious, lots of competition.  Because of Topaz's unique abilities, he helps his friend construct a faster airship than anything that world had seen in generations.

     I started pondering what kind of emotions would be running through Topaz's head as he helped rebuild a ship that is more linked to him that he suspects, or when he and his friend take it for a test flight.  More on this later.

     The song uses the analogy of the fast car to represent the girl, of course, and that's the selling point for the song in today's marketplace.  I went strictly with the words that were used, and put the voice into the ship that the two boys had re-built.  Can a ship want to have the right pilot to fly it?  Sure, in these stories, why not?  Then another thought occurs...

     The ship had belonged to the Sapphire OpalStar, who died 2 generations ago.  It was her private vessel and had been as much a part of her as it was a machine.  She had participated in the Race, but sabotage had made her crash.  The ship was wrecked and wound up in the junkyard...where Sapphiro and Topaz could find it. (Opaluck at work, of course)  That kind of ship, built in a Realm like Opal, would have been able to develop a mind of its own.  It would be forlorn, and despairing, this sentient ship.  Sensing Topaz's hidden powers and Sapphiro's Opal-refugee lineage would be enough to awaken it.  It was an OpalStar's ship, so it latched onto Topaz right away, even though he's not achieved his full Powers yet.  His touch unlocks it, and allows him to give it to his friend....

     OK, yes, my thought-imagery comes out in biggish chunks.  For that, I apologize.  I don't want to drag you all through my mental morass too much here.  However, hashing through this I saw something that I needed to fix in the manuscript that I have on the go now:  Topaz needs to feel frightened exhilaration when he flies with Sapphiro for the first time.  It has to be a  really visceral feeling in him, like he's overcoming a deep emotional block that has prevented him from doing (something).  Experiencing the feeling of freedom reveals part of his hidden Opal nature.  That lead me to realize that I need to make sure I show how deeply the bullying and the self-doubts / lack of self-esteem affect him as a growing child in the topaz Realm.

     So, now I have to finish grammar checking my draft #3, update it based on the corrections and additions that I've made to the hard copy that printed last week...THEN I need to go in and find the places where Topaz's actions and inner monologue can show his inner conflicts and tweak them mercilessly.  I predict that there are about 4 or 5 scenes that can address this fairly well.

     There.  My brain, at the moment.  My creative process is like an old record player - using a needle to read the random wiggles and bumps on a wide black-vinyl disk to create an electrical pattern that gets sent to a speaker and turned into sound.   Needle = pen,  Record = the emotional content of the music, Speaker = the distilled words on the page.  (and a brief technology lesson for the younger members of the crowd.)

     Thanks for reading my ramblings.  Feel free to add your 2-cents-worth. 

Take care.
Fate favor you.