By Janet Quinn Cornelow
Dragons. The mythological creature that breathes fire and graces our fantasies. Everyone seems to love dragons. Even Harry Potter had dragons.
I wished that I had put dragons in my Augeas fantasy series and have been trying to figure out how to work them into it.
Then I saw this television program about dragons. They found what they thought could be a dragon in a frozen cave in
All cultures seem to have a fire-breathing dragon myth. The strange thing about all of those myths is the fact that the dragons are physically the same. Besides the fire-breathing part, they also all flew and had large mouths and teeth.
When the frozen dragon was dissected, they discovered that it would have been able to breath fire. Those studying the body of the dragon figured it had to have been a pre-historic creature that developed during the dinosaur period. They think it was a large predator and that dragons may have caused some of the damage that has been found on the skulls of tyrannosaurus. The dragons were one of the first birds and soared in updrafts like condors. They lived in the mountains and may have used their fire abilities to keep their eggs warm.
Then the dinosaurs disappeared. Those studying the remains of this juvenile, female dragon theorize that the dragons must have returned to the water at that time and that is why they survived. Maybe that is what the Loch Ness monster is.
Then, when the world changed again, the dragons left the water and returned to the land. Then they returned to the mountains and their frozen homes where they were hunted by man. The myth of the knight hunting the dragon to save the lady in peril could have come from this creature found frozen in a cave with the three men she took with her.
It was a fascinating special and if I could find the channel again, I would tape it.
However, it does help with my dilemma of how to put dragons into my Augeas series. When Rayna goes after Gideon into the mountains, there can be dragons there.
This is the Tax Collector from my short story, Weaving A Dream, part of Whiskey Shots, Vol. 17. Myna must face down the tax collector and not allow him to cheat her out of her money and her home.
The new year has started, and with it, new ideas. I have been judging the Ritaâ€™s and I always seem to come up with a new story idea while I am reading. It is a â€œOh, I have never done this type of story. What could I do?â€ The Enchanted Hawk was one of those books. I read a shape-shifter book and decided I wanted to write one. However, I didnâ€™t want to write werewolves or any other type of were animals. So, Brylyn of the Hawk Clan came into being. Of course, when you have shape-shifters, there is always the clothing problem. When they shift, they are no longer dressed as humans, so when they shift back, theyâ€™re naked. I read one book where the werewolves carried backpacks with a change of clothes in them so they didnâ€™t have to run around naked. I decide I didnâ€™t want my shape-shifter naked, running through the castle with evil men after her. So, I decided the clothes turned into her feathers or fur. I can do that. It is my world.
Sometime last year I came up with an idea for a short contemporary dark fantasy involving a Chimera. My plot group told me it was too good of an idea with too much to it for a short. I thought about it and decided maybe they were correct, but then I had to come up with a new idea for the short. I havenâ€™t done that, but, while I was reading the books I was judging, I decided maybe the characters were too good for just one book. I could make a serious out of this. The hero and heroine could chase more monsters after they kill the Chimera.
That leaves me with more work. For a short, the world doesnâ€™t have to be as developed as it will for a series. Also, I have to come up with new monsters. I donâ€™t want to be using the same monsters as others. I donâ€™t do were-creatures or vampires. I guess while I finish my sequel with Sam â€“ heâ€™s still in bed with Jubilee â€“ and write a sequel to my mystery, Iâ€™ll be doing world building. Lots of world building.
by Janet Quinn
I have been spending a lot of time working in Augeas lately and finally have managed to finish story five and six. One is about an inn keeper with secrets. The second is about twins who have very powerful magic. The two tie together, which is the first time Iâ€™ve done that with a set of stories. Working with magical children was fun, but as always, working with children is a challenge. Trying to make them sound like children and keeping them from being boring is like walking a tight rope.
As with any society, when there are two races, there is interbreeding. So, the half-breeds are born and along with them societal statements. Are they accepted or shunned? Do they have magical powers like one of their parents or none? If they do have magical powers, can they be as strong as a purebred. How long will they live? So Brencis finally settled on an age. Heâ€™s not an Ancient One, however, his father was. Heâ€™ll live longer than a human, but maybe not as long as an Ancient One. Other half-breeds might live only as long as a normal human. He has magical powers, but not all of his kind does. His powers are strong, but other half-breeds have weaker powers or no powers. And what do the half-breeds want? To be accepted? To rule? Do they all want the same thing? Probably not since even the purebred canâ€™t all agree on what they want. But the half-breeds bring another layer to the world as they hide and work within the society.
Last month I was talking about the drawings I had made and wondering if my characters wore underwear. My critique partner, Debra Young, and I finally met and I showed her the picture of Dorjan. Her comment was that because of the era, they probably didnâ€™t wear underwear, which makes the picture even more risquÃ©.
This month I have a picture of Carissa. She is a very strong Ancient One in one of the first set of short stories. She is middle aged for her kind with an agenda of her own.
She could see the lordâ€™s guard. They were coming for them. She jumped up. â€œGrandmother!â€ she shouted.
All turned to stare at her.
â€œQuiet her,â€ snapped Inuus.
â€œNo!â€ shouted Dyna. She looked directly at her grandmother. â€œCarissa, we must leave now.â€
Carissa blinked at her, searched her mind, then rose.
â€œSit down,â€ ordered Inuus. He stood and glowered at Carissa.
Carissa smiled at him. â€œI must quiet my granddaughter. For some reason, she is distraught.â€ Carissa stared into Inuusâ€™ eyes, unblinking. â€œIt is nothing but a fit. I would never consider leaving before we discuss what we are to do.â€ Her voice came in a low, soft murmur.
Inuus slowly sank back onto the cushion. She motioned to Govert and Elga. â€œCome.â€ She beckoned to Dyna.
â€œWe must take the child.â€ Govert moved toward the back of the house.
â€œLeave the child.â€ Carissa swept past Dyna.
With each step in creating a fantasy world, as in adding half-breeds to the mix, the world changes and grows. It becomes an ever evolving society with added intrigue and layers.