Or, a completely made up work.
First of all, an update. In the last rant, I talked about Beneath the Blue Pale not appearing on the ARCHIVOS podcast. I should clarify. I'm not giving up on the story altogether. I'm still working on it, I just need to get over this concept. This thing that holds me back and is going to probably haunt me for a long while.
We'll give it a name.
It's the name of this rant. Ataxonomia. These are the things that sum up my work. My writing and stories and projects. My identity. It's the avoidance of classification. It's hating to put complex ideas into little boxes. It's when presented with the label of something, I immediately want to do anything in my power to defy it. A little angsty rebellion.
Don't think this is some /r/iamverysmart shit, with this bullhockey that my ideas are too big, too grand for that. No. They're not. Beneath the Blue Pale is as a I described it when submitting my story to ARCHIVOS. I'm not going to list all the ways I wanted to avoid it with Beneath the Blue Pale, but the avoidance and insistence to abandon classifications makes a terrible product. It makes an idea too hard to sell. Too awkward to present. And I'm not talented or well connected enough, all zero-readers of this here blog, to even attempt something like that. Something that morphs and changes the further you look into it because I disdain the grain of the status quo, even if it's this shallow facsimile. Like wearing a Star Wars t-shirt and ranting about the military nostalgia complex sapping adults with the fondness they have their own childhood.
Not saying I'm innocent here. I'm just pointing out the ridiculousness of it.
If there's a simpler word for ataxomomia, it's being difficult. And you, Neek, are being difficult.
Or, a completely made up work.
So I had to give it a rest. With Moonbarred or Beneath the Blue Pale. The podcast episode with the Roundtable probably won't happen, either.
Also, the podcast has been renamed to the ARCHIVOS Podcast Network, which is a lot more poppy than The Round Table (a fact that was pointed quite frequently on the show.) It would have been a Brainstorm episode, had it happened. They're doing some cool stuff with it (link), though. I'd check it out.
The reason it's not happening is, well, I broke it. I'm what they call a seats of a pantser, someone who writes on the fly. The whole concept behind Moonbarred, which is about a young woman taking a vacation to the intergalactic equivalent of New Jersey and finding trouble (no crap), was that I had an idea. And I started pouring that idea out page after page, taking the plot through a shaky idea in my head. Except it broke apart the moment I tried to define it. I had to piece together a 6-8 minute pitch, with theme, setting, characters, and plot... and the more I worked at it, the worse it all got. The dumber it seemed. The more untenable the plots and events, that had been burning in the back of my mind, became. So I gave it up.
Instead I've been toying around the idea of a new story. An old story, I guess? Based off D&D settings and half-baked ideas, inspired by video games and some books I've been reading recently (omg the Expanse series is awesome. Sort of.)
But there's one story I've been wanting to tell. A demythification of a myth that's never happened. A story of lives, civilizations, and a world on the cusp of falling apart. And in a setting that interests me greatly: The Bronze Age.
Meet the Infamy series, a work in progress of half-assed world-building and "epic" fantasy (where, were it for not the facts of the characters, it'd make a pretty trope-worthy epic). It follows mainly Rodah, the mercenary with a hereditary curse of just poor luck, as well his father's own bad luck (or bad decision making) falling into Rodah's lap. To regain his father's honor, and his place in his clan, Rodah sails to the Edge, where the sphere of the Earth is shattered and everything falls into the Oblivion, to slay a dragon. It's cool. The oracle told him to do this... except... he fails to kill the dragon, but snatched her three eggs out from under her.
So what happens, when you have an egg sweating water? One sweating dust? And another never falling, sometimes floating, and sweating wind and cloud? You could say, there are four elements: Water, earth, and air... except, where's the fire egg? And why were they about to teeter off?
And so on. The first book, of this tentative series, is titled Rodah and the Sweat of the Seas, where he's joined by the warlock Svaitlaugas, a strange being? man? who has seen the beginning and end of time a thousand times over, but he knows this time around, he hasn't seen things before, and his assistant Dalia, a bastard girl with hopes and dreams of nobility and a knack for a hustle, and a forlorn princess, daughter of a king who seeks to throw his empire away on good will.
Maybe I'll pitch this one to ARCHIVOS. It's not starting with me just putting words down, but actual planning. And I don't feel like I'm breaking anything, only improving. Let's see how they feel about that!
Alright. Well, the site's been going through some minor changes. I've completed the new registration form. I've modified the forms' CSS so that it looks nicer (of course, possibly I'll only see the nicer aspects of it).
The new postit seems to work effectively. I'm still working/adding/tweaking elements to the site as things go on. We'll see how well this works.
So I haven't quite really updated this page in a while...
And it's not for a lack of trying. Holidays can be fun like that. But it's been a damn long time since I've had something resembling free time. Hopefully, once things get settled and evened out, I can relax into a strong routine and do what I'm supposed. Like write. And update this blog.
And wonder why the hell no one is signing up for the KneeQuickie. C'mon, guys! It's right there. It's not broken. It works perfectly fine.
Or, better known as LANGUAGES... IN... SPACE!
Alright. Alright. Settle down there. Do I got my scotch? Yeah, I got my scotch. Good. Good.
So I've been working on something. For a story I've been dragging my feet on. Can't really flex my writing muscles without also pumping my worldbuilding pec juices. If it's not coming up with fictitious geographies, it's making up languages.
And for this project, I've been especially lazy.
For this story, project titled Beneath the Blue Pale (aka, Moonbarred), a novel about a young woman going on vacation at what can best be described as an oil refinery and quarry, except it's a moon. Where she finds love, intrigue and answers. Some of them, to questions she didn't even ask.
But we'll talk about that later.
For the setting, I needed languages. Real languages. Things to bring breath into place names. Our heroine, Tessa M. Prosiri, is a native of Montarzejo, the Mountain Planet. Though she grew up speaking Polish, the nature of Montarzejo (and the rest of the human-habited worlds) is a multilingual, multicultural Pollockesque hell.
So, of course, people default to lingua francas when they can. And I'm working on three. Three languages spoken by people, people in space. You could call them space languages. SPACELANGS!!!
There're three: Spaceperanto, Spaceskrit, and Spacitic. If you know anything of languages, you can sorta guess what this is all about.
Spaceperanto: Esperanto. Spaceskrit: Sanskrit. And Spacitic: Arab. Or close enough on the last two. Spaceskrit is an Indo-Iranian style IAL (international auxiliary language, not international anime language. That's Japanese), that's a simplified and reduced form of Proto-Indo-European. Spacitic is the reduced, consumable form of Semitic languages, in the same vein that Esperanto is a reduction sauce of European languages.
What's so great about Spaceperanto? And why wouldn't Esperanto work?
Because, as much as I find Esperanto to be a fun little language, and I love its goals and aims, it's not that great of a language overall. It sounds funny. It doesn't match up to what we learn about certain European languages (you mean, adjectives end in -a and nouns in -o? bona amiko sounds silly!) So I made some stylistic changes from Esperanto, as well as plugged it with my innovations.
The problem, so far as I see it, with making whole languages for a story is that it seems to be a self-serving process. Very few people will truly appreciate the work the same you do. You can make a 100%, accurate and realistic language... yet no one is probably going to learn it. The success of Klingon and Quenya, among others, is based not on the novelty, the Europeaness, or some other ephemeral quality that we can ascribe, but the popularity of the work.
If people like it enough, they'll make an effort. But that's not entirely true, either. I remember when I discovered Zompist's Verdurian. That language still has me in perpetual awe, and by today's conlanging standards, is rife with tired tropes and retired cliches. But it's the carefulness of the language, the attention, the narrative around it that holds me.
And most other conlangs are absent that.
So while I can post a grammar of that language on this blog (or at the very least, just the changelog from Esperanto), it doesn't seem right. There's no discussion that I can make from it.
So just know. When the story's out there. There's going to be some weird phrases. And there'll be a place where you can figure it out if that's your bag.