I am undergoing more training as a writer with my favorite author, Christopher Paolini. Our most recent lesson revolved around the following:
Me: “When it comes to medieval battle tactics, where did you get your inspiration from?”
Paolini: “The Face of Battle,” by John Keegan; “On Combat,” by Dave Grossman; “The Book of the Five Rings,” by Musashi; “The Art of War,” by Sun-Tzu; “Beowulf”; and of course, lots, and lots of fantasy novels.”
This training session gave me more potential sources to seek out for my fantasy book. I cannot tell you how blissful it is to be trained by your role model. It’s like being trained by Clark Gable or Alan Arkin. I will keep you updated on any further developments.
I uncovered something extraordinary in my medieval research that happened recently. After five hundred years, the remains of Richard III, the last Plantagenet king to rule England, was discovered under a parking lot. The skeleton’s identity was confirmed through carbon dating and DNA tests with a descendant of Anne of York, Richard’s sister. While Richard III may not have been a hunchback, he still had scoliosis. Apparently, the Tudors and William Shakespeare exaggerated Richard’s spinal issue to portray him as a hunchback. As for the cause of death, it became clear that Richard’s crowned helmet fell off his head during the Battle of Bosworth Field. Due to this, Richard received a number of head injuries such as an axe grazing his scalp, a dagger puncturing his skull, and a sword slicing the back of his head to the point in which his brains spilled out. Also, evidence pointed to Richard receiving a stab wound in his pelvis, but it may have been postmortem to add insult to injury. Still, the fact that it took all of those head injuries to bring Richard down means that Richard died a badass! He died the way he wanted: as a warrior king with his sword in hand. This made Richard III the last English king to die in battle. Fortunately, Richard III got a funeral fit for a king five centuries after his death and it was beautiful. During his funeral, I learned that one of my favorite actors, Benedict Cumberbatch, is Richard III’s second cousin 16 times removed. That makes my favorite actor Plantagenet royalty! Despite Richard III’s death and the fact that the Plantagenets lost their royal status, they still endure to this day. They are Richard III’s legacy because he lives in them.
After several days of back-breaking work, I have finally finished fixing the flaws and plot holes in what I have written in my fantasy book so far. Now I can proceed to write the story out. It took a lot of time and effort to reach this point, but it was well worth it to make the fantasy book a higher quality story. I will keep you updated on any further developments.
I am toying with the idea of having dragons take human form in my fantasy book. There have been cases in which dragons do this such as World of Warcraft and Dragonlance. When I think of a dragon in human form, I envision them being similar to high elves in that they are tall and inhumanly beautiful. However, they would be covered in soot and smell like ash. I will tinker with this further as I continue writing.
One of the most common themes in fantasy is the concept of dragon riders. Authors who have included dragon riders in their works include Christopher Paolini, Cornelia Funke, George R. R. Martin, David Burrows, Anne and Todd McCaffrey. The list is VERY long. Each of these authors have depicted their own unique interpretations of dragon riders. Some dragon riders domesticated and trained dragons while others form telepathic and empathic bonds with dragons. Some dragon riders become keepers of the peace while others become unstoppable conquerors.
Personally, I find the idea of telepathically and emotionally bonding with a dragon to be the more fascinating concept. The reason for this is because dragons as a species are overflowing with pure emotions and vast memories. Once you bond with a dragon, your emotions are augmented to primal levels. Your rage, hunger, willpower, and other emotions become a potent mixture between human and beast. With memories, bonding with a dragon would grant you access to visions of both creation and destruction. The psychological and spiritual impact of bonding with such a powerful and ancient animal is immense.
As for either peacekeepers or conquerors, I think using dragons for peacekeeping is too idealistic and unrealistic for my tastes. Realistically, due to the inevitable greed and ambition of human nature, dragons would be used as weapons of war. Why bother marching an army against invaders when you can summon a dragon to burn them to ashes? Why participate in a siege when you can send a dragon to burn the castle? The possibilities of using dragons for warfare are limitless. Even a war elephant cannot compare. Only magic or other giant war beasts have any hope of fending off a dragon.
Because I am a devout fan of dragons and love the idea of bonding with them, I am thinking of including dragon riders in my fantasy book, but they will have my own unique flare (pun intended) to them. I will also be exploring the psychological and spiritual effects of bonding with a dragon as well as the long term price that comes with it.
I saw on the news that a 10 year old autistic boy was arrested for kicking his teacher. As an autism ambassador, I am completely appalled by how the so-called police handled the situation. I was in that kid’s situation when I was his age. Back then I had little to no control over my emotions and impulses and there have been people who were cruel to me as a result. Rather than accommodate the child to calm him down they outright arrest him like a common criminal. I am officially losing all faith in our society. We have become brutal and sadistic to the point in which we traumatize autistic children over petty little things. I hope this video finally motivates the people to do something to change the way schools and the police handle situations like this.
In addition to owning two pit bulls, I also own a desert tortoise named Speed. He just woke up from hibernation, had a turtle spa treatment, and had a hefty breakfast. One could argue that he is a labrador retriever in a turtle’s body because whenever anyone is near, he just walks right up to them begging for affection. Like my pit bulls, I also draw inspiration from Speed. Since my fantasy book features reptilian monsters, I am thinking of studying Speed’s mannerisms and the texture of his scales and incorporate them into my book.