Time for a new weekly writer’s roundup of my works-in-progress and those ready to read!
I managed to get the first two parts of my science fantasy space opera, PRINCE OF STARS posted to the Reddit writing challenge that inspired it on Christmas Eve. I think they turned out pretty well, and I started in on the third part (“Chapter XII”) on Sunday. Thanks to a winter storm combined with an overlooked, “use it or lose it” vacation day, I was able to spend yesterday getting the chapter two-thirds finished with a day-off!
The day allowed me to resolve the cliff-hanger that the prior chapter ended on. In the process I wrote what I felt was a really good scene involving one of my teenaged protagonists overcoming her sense of inadequacy in a life-or-death moment. I was listening to John Williams’ Star Wars scores to maintain my mood at the time, and when Binary Sunset (A.K.A. “The Force Theme”) surged while I wrote the crux of it, it suddenly felt so very right!
Part of what I felt worked so well about it was how it builds on what I had already shown of the relationship between Kensei Kenara and her four daughters in the developing story. She’s not just their mom; she’s also a skilled mentor who lets her children learn between a balance of her instruction and their own explorations. What worked for me was a paragraph where Kenara combines her emotional insight as a mother with her instructional insight as a teacher to help her daughter see a strength in herself that she didn’t know was there.
I really enjoy writing Kenara. It’s probably because she is very much an Obi-Wan Kenobi kind of character, and he is without a doubt my favorite character in Star Wars. Although they share a lot of character traits, situationally I’ve made Kenara quite different from him: She’s a middle-aged mother of teenaged girls, instructing them in her mystical warrior ways. That’s something that fundamentally brings a very different feel to the story compared to the Luke – Obi-Wan dynamic. And although Kenara is a pragmatic traditionalist in the same vein as Master Kenobi, her traditions differ from his. This is obvious in the fact that she does not show the (prequel introduced) Jedi prohibition on family-emotional attachments, and likely isn’t required to be celibate by her Order either.
These deviances not only help make my Manaurians in PRINCE OF STARS distinct from the Jedi of Star Wars, but also craft a story that is distinct in its focus and tone from that saga as well. And it’s intentional.
I’ll very openly state that PRINCE is lovingly inspired by Star Wars in the same way that The Lord of the Rings has inspired much fantasy fiction since its publication. Star Wars itself was inspired by the likes of Flash Gordon, Buck Rodgers and Japanese Jidaigeki films… I’ve used those sources and others to craft my own story that alludes and honors the tale that inspired it, rather than creating a fan-fiction or rip-off. Hopefully, it will stand on its own and with a strong pair of legs when it’s done. :-)
I plan to work on the story more in the coming week, perhaps finishing it. Then next weekend, it all becomes about The Brynesmark again. I’ll be skipping the January Challenge on Reddit to focus on that piece specifically, and get it done.
Alright, time for me to stop blogging and get back to writing some more fiction! Take care!