Wednesday, March 30, 2011

They slumber in the briar-cage of dreams...

Do you know, according to this tool (<===click!) that analyzes one's writing for similarity to published authors, I write like Anne Rice and / or Neil Gaiman (that last name expecially got a squee of glee when it came up). At least, I did when I checked poetry. Depending on the poem, the tool also gave me Mary Shelley, H.P. Lovecraft, and Ursula K. Leguin. And Shakespeare, but sadly I think that was merely because of the words "alas!" and "mem'ry." Well, I'm in good company. (But where was Edgar Allen Poe?) Which writers will have written like you, I wonder?

Speaking of good company, thanks to my new and very first followers! I much appreciate having an audience to regale with the escapades of my spookily inclined dreamers.

First-drafting books Three and Four has petered out for the moment, but luckily ideas for the first book's second draft (ack, too many numbers) have been flowing in rather encouragingly. More about this in the character introduction posts which are to come, but so you won't be lost, Book 1's premise is: Goth girl Taralyn moves from California to Tokyo with her family. She feels a bit lost until meeting some fellow black-clad types, which include Lorcan, an Irish student at the nearby University. All this plus faeries and vampires and oracular visions.

On that note, Taralyn is a seer and doesn't know it. She has a dream at the beginning where she visits an otherworldly "midnight ballroom" (hence the name of my other blog, if you were curious), where mysterious dancers waltz in their brocade and silk and velvet. She dances with a strange person she comes to think of as the "shadow-prince," because the impression she gets of him is that of a silhouette--even his face is obscured by shadows.

This dream prophecies Taralyn's meeting of Lorcan, who is secretly a prince in Faerie. Recently I learned from Taralyn (you know how it is,  when your characters surprise you) that she continues meeting the shadow-prince in subsequent dream-visions, and part of her quest, if you will, is deciding whether to believe that he's real (she wants him to be) or a figment of her very vivid imagination. Lorcan can't confirm one way or the other, despite being the person she's meeting, because he doesn't remember the dreams.

This feels rather confusing to explain, but I won't worry because I know my readers are a smart bunch. ("Never assume your readers won't get it" is a rule I try to live by.) Anyway. A big theme in my writing is not only "becoming one's true self," but accepting all the different sides of one's personality/self, if that makes sense. The Shadow-prince, known henceforth by his/Lorcan's fae name, Starsilk, is who Lorcan is meant to be, or who he is in Faerie, or who he would be without the issues he's carrying (that's right, let's keep it vague) that weigh him down. Lost yet? Good.

Lorcan doesn't remember the dreams because his subconscious/fae nature is buried much deeper than Taralyn's (yes, Taralyn has a fae nature--only she doesn't know it).  I already have references to the Sleeping Beauty fairytale for both Lorcan and Taralyn in different ways, and now here's another one in which the kiss of a princess must wake the prince who slumbers beyond the rose-briar hedge.

So that's my recent plot breakthrough. What sorts of breakthroughs have you had?

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