I NARRATE THE RAVEN

I made a video of me narrating Edgar Allen Poe’s The Raven. In order to get the mood right, I included the song Lilium from the anime known as Elfen Lied. Enjoy!

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AN IMPERIAL MAUSOLEUM

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Every dynasty should have a proper resting place for the entire family. In my fantasy series, the current family who rules Gradaia have such a place inside of the Imperial Palace. I have taken inspiration from one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World: the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus. There is even a unique custom of how an Imperial funeral is held. Whenever a member of the Imperial Dynasty dies, their body is publicly and ceremonially cremated before being poured into a vat of molten gold. The ashes are mixed with the gold and molded into a statue in the deceased’s idealized likeness. Then the statue is placed in the mausoleum with the others with their name plastered underneath it. So the mausoleum is a combination between a tomb and an art gallery.

SAGES OF GRADAIA

Like all civilizations, Gradaia has its own religion and holy orders who serve it. Gradaia’s religion is based on five nameless Elemental Gods: light, earth, fire, air, and water. There is also a sixth god, the god of darkness, who is shunned from the pantheon. As a result, he is referred to as the False God and worshipping him is considered taboo. The temples worshipping these gods resemble a collection of five pyramids (one for each god). In rare cases, some temples even have an underground inverted pyramid that is dedicated to the False God. These temples operate like tabernacles and the religion’s ideology is similar to Old Testament Christianity. The priests who serve this religion are known as Sages. They can be both men and women and they are considered equals. Sages can be distinguished from their snow-white robes and ceremonial silver helmets. In addition to serving the Elemental Gods, Sages are known to record and safeguard all the world’s knowledge, much like how monks did during the Dark Ages. Due to their extensive education, Sages often serve as healers, advisors, and scribes wherever they go. One of the characters in Numen the Slayer is one of these Sages.

OWNING A DRAGON

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What would you do if you could own a dragon? How would you take care of it? Where would you keep it? Personally, I would keep a dragon on a cattle farm in Australia. It may sound strange at first, but there is a reason to my madness. First of all, like snakes, dragons keep growing for the rest of their lives so they would need a lot of wide open spaces for them to roam. In Australia, there are cattle farms that are millions of acres and can house thousands of cows. All that land would give the dragon enough room to maneuver and it will be filled with enough beef to last until the end of its days. Also, there would be rivers that would provide plenty of water as well as crocodiles for extra sustenance. The Australian Outback used to be home to thirty-foot long monitor lizards in the Ice Age so it would make sense that it would be suited for a dragon. How about you?

A GOLDEN DRAGON

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I am thinking of including a magnificent dragon in my second fantasy book. This dragon will have gold and bronze scales with eyes that are colored copper. Also, his great wings will have membranes that glitter like diamonds and as big as galley sails. In terms of size, this dragon will be as tall as a three-story mansion when standing at his full height and teeth as long as short sword blades. I am thinking of naming him after a Mesopotamian god.