Apr 27

Exclusive to the Paksworld Blog…

Posted: under Background, snippet.
Tags: ,  April 27th, 2013

This prologue was written way, way back, in the days when I was writing Oath of Fealty and had no idea what the mysterious thing was, where it would turn up, or how it would function.    But it actually started farther back than that,  decades before I  started the first Paks book.    It started with some verses and some music, back in the day when I wrote some of both (not outstanding, nothing worth pursuing with the level of musical incompetence I had.)    “Three white towers in an empty land, red sand like an endless sea…”   That image stuck with me, and became Old Aare when I started writing about Paks.

Some of you may figure out more than has yet been told, and I would ask you not to speculate out in the open too much  about it, just in case you spoiler it for others.    (If I need to open another spoiler topic, I’ll do that.)    Below the break, the non-prologue…as this is not really a snippet (though tagged as one) but a non-snippet, a bit that won’t be in the book.

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Mar 12

Moment of Panic (Unnecessary)

Posted: under Background, Contents, Conventions, Life beyond writing, the writing life.
Tags: , , ,  March 12th, 2013

So…I went in last night to do some late work on the book after supper (which was late)  and after typing away decided it was time to quit.   Whereupon Microsoft Word said (in my phrasing)  “I feel sick and I’m quitting and what you’ve been working on may be lost when I shut down…Too bad, sucker.”

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Jun 12

Register and Custom

Posted: under Background, Craft, the writing life.
Tags: , , ,  June 12th, 2012

I really admire Sharon Lee & Steve Miller’s Liaden books, because they handle issues of register and custom so well.  For those not dragged backwards through a linguistics course at some point, “register” refers to the way people speak in reference to social roles.    Most of us learn as children that one mode of speaking is fine with another child–a friend, say–but another is needed to satisfy expectations when talking to a friend of our parents.  That’s register: everything from the choice of words to the tone of voice to the topics considered appropriate…communication changes with social situations.

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May 27


Posted: under Background, the writing life.
Tags: ,  May 27th, 2012

Editor has asked, quite reasonably, for more information about elvenhomes.   I vaguely remember writing a post about it,  one of the background posts.  But did I actually hit the PUBLISH button?    Do any of you remember?    Here are some questions (if you feel like answering them) that will give me a handle on how much readers grasp of the elvenhome thing…(in case you haven’t seen the post about it.)

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May 23

Spoilerish: Gnomes

Posted: under Background, the writing life.
Tags: , ,  May 23rd, 2012

Since I already let this kitten roll out of the bag somewhere else, it’s loose here as well.    It’s spoiler-ish, but not a true spoiler, and it’s insight into how my mind functions on “deep logic” issues.  It’s slightly (but only slightly and not in essence) different from the version on the other venue.   However, if you fear even the faintest tinge of spoilerishness, maybe better skip this one.

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May 02

A Few Geographic Clues

Posted: under Background, Contents, the writing life.
Tags: , , ,  May 2nd, 2012

Clearly I haven’t been clear enough about the geography.   Here’s some help.

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Apr 06

What I Can Say: What Shouldn’t Be Said

Posted: under Background.
Tags:  April 6th, 2012

Things I can say–background,  some characterization hints, history, and notes on craft.   What shouldn’t be said is anything that’s a “hard spoiler” for the next book or the one I’m working on.

That’s difficult for me, sometimes–I don’t always* remember which detail is in which book, because the story as a whole (minus, unfortunately, some very important bits of Book V, but they’re coming) flows together.    When, exactly, did I first mention Character R?  When, exactly, did this confrontation occur, or that one–not in time, but in which book, in what chapter of which book?

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Mar 14

Gnome Expansionism

Posted: under Background, Contents, the writing life.
Tags: , ,  March 14th, 2012

There I was, writing away on Book V,  when something popped up that solved a mystery.   This should not be spoilerish, more like background material that we just haven’t seen yet.    It was clear all along that there were more gnome princedoms than Aldonfulk and Gnarrinfulk, but those were the only ones who had inpinged on the story so far.    My attempt to figure out where they were and who they were had foundered.   Until today.

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Feb 10

And an Update

Posted: under Background, Contents, Website Update.
Tags: , , , ,  February 10th, 2012

The history page on the Paksworld website has now been updated and expanded.   Ever wonder what they use for money in the different realms?   Want to know more about trade?   You folks were showing enough interest that when I went into the file to fix typos (and let’s hope I didn’t just create more typos)  I decided to add more information.

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Feb 05

How Things Change

Posted: under Background, Reader Help, the writing life.
Tags: , ,  February 5th, 2012

In the book I’m working on,  the Company is once more camped near Ifoss, as in Sheepfarmer’s Daughter.   In that book, the Company camped on the west side of town.    Now they’re camping on the east side.  Moreover, the town’s changed some (as most towns did, during and after Siniava’s War.   Paks at that point didn’t care whether the town had a grange;  it does…on the west side.    Ifoss is still the smallest of the Foss Council cities, but its wall is no longer complete; expansion after Siniava’s War (the war to end wars, in the locals’ minds) led them to breach the wall to the northwest, while retaining most of the rest.    Several inns are mentioned in Sheepfarmer’s Daughter, and without my notebooks it didn’t occur to me to reuse any of the same names.  Until now, when–looking for something else–I ran across them.  So  there’s another bit of revision to be done.

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