Friday, August 15, 2014

in which i DO eventually reveal SKYRIAN

(hm, yes, well... this was actually supposed to have published last friday, but it seems i checked the wrong box on the calendar... derp!)

I would love to introduce my dearest story with great pomp and a spectacular, scrolling name, but the fact of the matter is it... doesn't have one. Yes, the story I have been scribbling in odd notebooks since I was thirteen still has a working title. #awkwardauthormoment
 Jenny once posted that you're no type of author if you can't come up with a decent name for your creations. I must admit this knocked me for a loop until I was reminded that opinions (even from such admired and esteemed wordcrafters like Jenny) are not necessarily fact. The more I thought about it, the more I agreed (and not entirely out of self-pity, either - ha). Different people are talented in different ways (have you seen Jenny's titles? Katelyn's? I drool, I drool!). Some people can pluck award winning titles like berries on a bush, others - like me - have to wait (and wait) for them to spring out of said bush, a bit like a rabid squirrel: at once sudden and alarming, but also excitedly anticipated.
 Basically, you should assume that all of my titles are working titles (or in some cases placeholders for Pinterest board names), with the exception of Winterkiln. By some miracle that squirrel leaped quite early on.
I think that's far enough down that rabbit trail...

Summary of So Far-
Skyrian is a tale that unfolds in the land of Ithreal. A country renowned for it's horses and horsemen but divided by feuds, its history has been anything but peaceful pastures.
 Civil war is again brimming on the horizon between an oppressed north country and the affluent Crown Loyalist counties to the south. But Cilla could hardly care less about the future of a land that cared not for her when her own was at stake. At nearly fifteen, she, Tyrel, and Emy are nearing the end of their lives unless they can escape the Master.
 When an escape plan goes awry in the northern seaport town of Daryn, Cilla has little hope of seeing the next dawn, let alone her birthday.
 Yet lilies grow in the midst of mire.
 With the sudden eruption of civil war, a Keltish horseman, and a black stallion, Cilla is given a second chance. But the price of freedom may prove too heavy...

Cast of Characters-
dark brownish-black hair (contrary to the above picture), blue eyes
At this point, Cilla is kind of hard for me to summarize since I know her better post-big change, and it's that version of her that talks loudest in my mind. But here it goes...
Like Tyrel and Emy, she has grown up under the Master's hand, scrounging, stealing, and playing card tricks in dirty ale houses and inns up and down the country to appease his wont of money.
Cilla is streetsmart, light-fingered, and a good judge of people. She has a sharp tongue, and can be cruel with it. She cares for little besides Emy and her own skin. She doesn't get into trouble without having a quick way out of it.

red hair, hazel eyes, freckles
Tyrel and Cilla, while close, often butt heads. He often takes unnecessary risks. Quietly, Cilla resents that instead of acting like an older brother he dodges any responsibility toward the girls, and will even hide behind them if a scheme goes particularly badly. 
But he's not all bad. He's clever and charming, wickedly gifted at expunging coin from even the most tight-fisted widows. Think of a young, moralless Flynn Rider with lying eyes and you'll be close.

light blond hair, blue eyes
Cilla describes her as 'angelic'. She is not stupid or naive but has, despite her surroundings and experiences, maintained an air of innocence. She is the only religious one in the band, owing to a monk's kindness to her as an orphan before she was taken by the Master. Right away Cilla began looking after her, and continues to try and shelter her from the worst. But sometimes - in Cilla's opinion - Emy's virtue goes too far. Emy stubbornly refuses to steal, though the penalties of not bringing in enough money are high. Instead she does grotty jobs for strangers, washing or mending clothes, cleaning filthy inn rooms, and often being rewarded with less money than she was promised.
She has but one earthly good, and that is a small metal cross set with a red stone.

The Master
Here's a real pice of work; Skyrian's first villain. A palm reader once told him he would die at the hand of a child turning grown. (In Ithreal, the age at which one begins adulthood is 15.) rarely travels to the southern counties, were he is wanted for warcrimes committed during the Rebellion. Carries an old military dagger on a leather cord around his neck.
Still tweaking the finer points of his motivation.

The Keltish horseman, Aidan
(just imagine him a good 15 years older)
The Kells, where Aidan is from is a huge high plain stretching between the western mountains and the sea. If you need a mental image, you can think of it as Wales only... flatter, higher, and surrounded by mountains, and prime horse country. Technically it's all Ithreal, but if you were to ask a Kelt or a Northman, they would tell you to go boil your head (Northmen are more likely to identify with their clans). The Kelts are semi-nomadic, grazing their herds of horses far and wide over the plains. They have few 'cities'. By Ithreal's standards of stone, brick, and mortar, they're more wooden outposts and shantytowns, and ruins of castles whose names and purposes have long been forgotten.

The black stallion

The Northcountry, Port of Daryn
& its peoples
The Northcounrty is a rough place to live. It's cold, it's damp, and if you don't like fish or mutton, you're going to starve. They're a breed of their own up there, with volatile alliances and long memories.
 I'm using primarily pictures of vikings to give you an idea of these people, but please note: they are fishermen - not marauders.

I hope you enjoyed this post as much as I did writing it! I will continue to write updates as I steam along (albeit rather slowly), and can't wait to write up the next installment of this little blog series!
 If you would like to see more about Skyrian, here is the link to its pinboard.

disclaimer: all images via


  1. Oh my gosh, this is so cool! I've never looked on Pinterest to find ideas for character appearances, locations, etc., so this was thoroughly enjoyable. Best of luck as you write the rest of your novel(s)!

  2. It sounds awesome!

    I really like the fact that you would think Tyrel would look after the girls, but he doesn't - he sounds like an interesting character :)

  3. It sounds really interesting!

  4. EEEP IT LOOKS SO AWESOME!!! :D And I loooove your pinterest board for it. (I came here to comment and got distracted looking at the board. XD)

    Sorry about the title problem... Yeah, I don't think that's true that titles show whether one is a good writer or not. Rubbish. Titles can be HARD. Seriously. I hope you find the right one! (Though I've always thought The Legend of Skyrian had a sort of flair, myself. ;) And Winterkiln... wow. o.o)

    Anyways LKSJLDFKJDLJK THIS STORY. Every time I hear more about it I get more excited! :D The plot sounds awesome and adventurous, and the characters sound fascinating, and it looks like you're putting a lot of effort into the world too! (Something I fail at completely... >.> Ahem.) All that to say, I wish you the best of luck in writing this thing because I can't wait to read it someday!!! Keep at it! *cheers you on* It'll happen someday!

    Looking forward to more loverly posts about your writings! ^_^

  5. I called it The Legend of Skyrian for a long time because I thought I was going to involve a lot of myth and well legends, but in the last year or so it just hasn't been working with the story I want to tell. Also "the legend of..." has never set well with me because it's been used and abused so much already :P

    Thank you so much for all the feedback! It seriously keeps me moving forward on the toughest days!
    Coming up next WINTERKILN....