Ferx

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The capital of Ferx is located in the mountains of Bormons and is known to be a mighty fortress that towers over the peak of the mountain that it is built on. Here is the story of its creation:

The fortress of Ferx was built with the aide of dragons. The first Lord of Bormons, Hareld Ferx, demanded a permanent abode, unlike the nomads of Bormons. He offered jewels and gold to those who would help him build his great home, but the nomadic people of Bormons did not rely on riches to live.

Enticed by the reward, three dragons came to Lord Hareld. Among them was the Iron Dragon. Hareld made a pact with the dragons and shortly after construction began. To build the great fortress he envisioned Lord Hareld would need to use the strongest steel.

The dragons used their own scales and infused them with steel that they created with dragon fire, thus Dragon Steel was created. Dragon Steel made walls so strong and so high that they towered over mountain peaks. It took Lord Herald and the dragons six years to complete the fortress of Ferx.

When the dragons demanded their payment the Lord of Bormons retreated into his fortress and refused to pay. The enraged dragons surrounded Ferx and bathed the fortress in dragon fire. The fortress forged by the dragons withstood the attack and the Lord was unharmed. One of the three dragons flew home and vowed never to help a human again.

The two dragons that remained scared away any who approached the great fortress. The Iron Dragon was known to eat many who wandered too close to Ferx. One day a beautiful woman approached the fortress and begged for them to let her pass, for the woman was with child and needed shelter. To the Iron Dragon’s disapproval, his young companion let the woman pass, but only if she swore to deliver Lord Ferx to them.

Agreeing to the terms, the woman was permitted entrance into the fortress. The two dragons waited many nights for the woman to keep her promise. Until one day the dragons heard a terrible cry and a babe was thrown from the fortress. The young dragon caught the infant and hid it from the Iron Dragon.

Only a few nights later the gates of Ferx opened. The woman pushed Lord Herald to the dragons. The young dragon left the Lord and took the mother, with her baby. They flew away leaving the lord at the mercy of the Iron Dragon. The dragon told Herald, “Give me all your riches and I will spare your life.” The shaking lord agreed and in the time of two nights he emptied his fortress of all his treasure. He presented his fortune to the Iron Dragon.

“I will take that which was promised to me ten years ago,” Said the Iron Dragon, “And pay you back with the same treachery you’ve shown me.”

The dragon’s jaws opened with a roar, before he ate Lord Hareld whole. The deceitful Lord met the fiery acid of the dragon’s stomach and melted into nothing. The Iron Dragon took his riches and retreated home, leaving Ferx empty.

Thank you for reading,

Lalia LaRose

Welcome to Terrivea

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Welcome to Terrivea a country made up of five lands: Bormons, Sylvespa, Lamaust, Avortium, and Medirus.

Astar is the capital of Terrivea. The royal palace and the portal both reside here.

Bormons is known for being a mountainous region with nomadic people. The capital of Bormons is the fortress of Ferx.

Sylvespa is a heavily forested region where the villages are secluded. Aurbor is the capital of Sylvespa.

Lamaust is known for the swamps that cover over half the land, along with the stand-offish Tree People. The capital of the wetlands is Demros.

Avortium resides in the Great Desert of Nalia, where the Brotherhood of Solani is the hand of justice. Sabucas is the urban centre of this arid land.

Medirus is the centre of the country and is blanketed by fields. Castilla is the capital and is the heart of the military.

This is Terrivea the main setting for my book The Last Queen of Terrivea. I plan to upload posts with more details about the lands and capitals of Terrivea, along with the people who live there.

Thank you for reading,

– Lalia LaRose 

Using Pain and Pleasure to Keep Your Readers Engaged

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There are two main types of emotions: positive and negative. Essentially pain and pleasure represent these two measures of emotion. In almost any art form pain and pleasure are used to emotionally speak to the audience. As writers we have to take our readers through an emotional journey through our storytelling. Any emotional experience includes pain and pleasure.

Example 1: I experienced pain after the death of my sister.

Example 2: I experienced pleasure after finding a boyfriend.

Two difference experiences, right? Both of these examples happened in my life at the same time. Actually, the day that my boyfriend and I were supposed to go on our first date was when I found out about my sister’s death. I’m not just rambling on about my life here; I have a point. Pain and pleasure exist simultaneously. Every individual experiences pain and pleasure throughout their lives, so do our characters.

It’s our job as writers to constantly fluctuate the levels of pain and pleasure that our characters experiences, which then translate to the emotions our readers experience as well.  A death of a character can bring your readers either pain or pleasure. I’ll be using events from The Game of Thrones as examples. (Spoiler Alerts!)

Pain Example: The death of Ned Stark.

Pleasure Example: The death of Joffrey Lannister.

Every single plot point in your novel has a different measure of pain and pleasure. Everything that happens to your characters should produce an emotional response in your audience. Just like how the Red Wedding and the Battle of the Bastards illicit emotions in fans of The Game of Thrones.

Pain and pleasure are natural results of any situation, but as a writer we must carefully calculate how we control these emotions. The emotions must must always be changing, but in a natural way. We cannot over exaggerate or under estimate the use of emotions in our writing. 

Here’s my advice: when crafting your story follow the pain and follow the pleasure. What brings you pain or pleasure as the writer will also bring the same emotion to your audience. But remember: always do so for a good purpose. Killing a character just for the sake of giving the reader a painful experience is not wise and not advisable. 

I wish you all happy writing.

Thank you for reading, 

 Lalia LaRose

Quick Update and Apologies 

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Hey everyone, 

I’ll start with the apologies: I’m sorry for a lack of posts. After making my schedule I was doing good with making regular posts, until I got a call from my mom. My grandma passed away. I don’t want to use this as an excuse. My grandmothers death isn’t the reason why I can’t seem to keep myself on a strict schedule. It’s me. Once something, anything, breaks my flow I always have a hard time catching up or getting back into the flow again. So for this, I am sorry. I can’t promise that this won’t happen again, but I am hoping to get myself back into a flow for the rest of the summer. 

Updates: I am working on an in-depth scene-by-scene outline for my rewrite of The Last Queen of Terrivea. After I finish this I will start my rewrite. 

Also, I have found a new job position for the fall. I’m excited and relieved to know I have work lined up for the next school year. 

In regard for future blog posts: I am hoping to make 2 posts a week. I’m not going to try and restrict what days I post, since it would seem I have a hard time with schedules and deadlines. The goal is to post twice a week for the remainder of August.

In September I may have to reduce to 1 post a week if work keeps me too busy, along with the rewrite. 

That’s all for now. Thank you for you patience and your understanding. 

Thank you for reading, 

Lalia LaRose 

How Art Can Save Your Novel’s Life!

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Hey everyone,

Above is a little sketch I drew about a year ago when The Last Queen of Terrivea was just an idea. The sketch is of the necklace Ophelia wears throughout the book, it’s the one her mother gives to her. Anyway, lets get down to business.

How can art save your novel’s life? Easily, by giving your ideas a physical space in the world. This not only solidifies the image you have in your head, but makes it easier on you when you have to describe said idea in writing.

Having a visual reference is always helpful when it comes to writing your book. Sometimes you can’t find the right reference you need online, so you’ll sketch it out for yourself. This is commonly referred to as concept art. It’s a helpful tool to turn abstract thoughts into concrete creations.

You don’t have to be an artist or good at drawing at all, since these pieces of art are generally only meant for you as a reference. I am going to suggest something to you that I think is really important, not only for sketching concept pieces, but for your writing in general.

Carry a small sketchbook around. Why?

  1. It gives you somewhere to jot down your ideas when they hit you.
  2. It allows creative freedom for notes and sketches, since the paper is not lined.
  3. Keeps your mind active and sharp, which can lead to great brainstorming sessions.
  4. It’s less distracting than electronics when doing brainstorming sessions.
  5. Is portable and easy to jot/sketch at anytime you feel the urge.

You can buy a cheap sketchbook pretty easily, but you can also make one yourself. Pinterest and Youtube have great tutorials for this. Here are a few photos of my most used sketchbooks.

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Your writing probably won’t suffer if you don’t bother sketching or jotting your ideas down. From personal experience, I find that it makes the process of brainstorming a lot easier, whether it translates to your prose or not.

One last tidbit of advice: write down any and every idea that comes to your mind, even if it seems stupid or bad. Just do it. Some of the best ideas sprout from bad seeds.

Thanks for reading!

-Lalia LaRose

P.S: Here’s a list of links for tutorials on how to make sketchbooks:

How Cue Cards Can Be Your Best Friend

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Hey there everyone!

I wanted to talk to you all about something I’ve used to help improve my writing as I’m writing. This trick is pretty simple anyone can use it, plus they can tweak and change it to their needs.

This trick is to use cue cards to remind of important aspects of writing that you need to include. For example, under Story and Plot I have questions like: Are the stakes high enough? or Is the story predictable?

On my ring I have cue cards for Story and Plot, Character, Writing Tools, and Scene. Under each category I have a pile of cue cards with questions and tips about the category. The really nice thing about this is that you can add new tips and questions at any time and easily. You can add new categories or sub-categories to suit your needs.

It’s nice to have these cue cards by your side while your writing so remind yourself of the things that make good writing. You can customize it to target the areas you need the most help on so you can improve your writing. They are meant to be used as a tool to help you get into the habit of asking yourself necessary questions and learning how implement them as you write.

It’s like using flashcards to study. For Writing Tools I used Roy Peter Clark’s book Writing Tools: 50 Essential Strategies for Every Writer. I didn’t write down all 50 writing tools, but I went through and wrote down the ones I know I need to implement. One I particularly like is “Put odd and interesting thins next to each other.”

This cue card technique can be used for just about anything, not just writing. I find that is more compact and easier to use than making check lists on papers to look at. It’s a but more engaging and more fun to make since you can be creative with it. Mine are basic and adjusted for my needs.

It’s simple, yet helpful, tool I wanted to share with you!

Thank you for reading,

-Lalia LaRose

Book Update (including a life update)

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Hey guys and girls, thought I should give you an update on how The Last Queen of Terrivea is coming alone. Still on the second draft, which entails writing in large chunks of story to fill in the plot points that I have added. The next step is to rearrange my current manuscript to reflect the changes I made to the plot. Once I’ve rearranged, filled in blanks, and make a list of my common mistakes to avoid, I will be moving onto the next step.

The rewrite. Probably going to be one the most daunting tasks thus far. Let me be clear, I’m not rewriting my manuscript because it’s unfixable or horrible. I am rewriting my manuscript because I know that I can make it even better that way. In the same amount of time that it would take to fix everything up (including all my boring/mediocre prose), I could rewrite it. The rewrite will also help teach myself how to avoid some of my most common mistakes while writing. Two birds one stone.

After the rewrite I plan to look through the novel, again, and find anything I missed, should add, or should change with the plot further. At this point I hope that there are only minimal plot changes and that my characters are on point. Then I can look at some smaller aspects that might need tweaking, like scenes and prose that need some life. Dialogue and descriptions will probably be on that list as well.

From there it’s redrafting and editing until the manuscript sings.

Now, for the life update.

I’ve been laid off of my day job. Due to budget cuts and union bumps, I will no longer hold my position at the end of June. It’s unfortunate, but life goes on. I will be looking for new positions and in the meanwhile I will be on the casual list. If I cannot find a new position I can remain on the casual list and focus on my novel in the meantime.

Thanks for reading,

-Lalia LaRose