Friday, March 21, 2014

"Jimmy and Cinder" and figuring out how dragons and trolls speak

My next middle grade story is titled "Jimmy and Cinder". The main characters are Jimmy, a 13 year old human prince, and Cinder, a dragon prince of similar age, who meet one day in the forest. Cinder is lost and Jimmy agrees to set him on the correct path home. Both have similar backgrounds, both are Crown Princes, both are skipping school when they meet. However, their fathers are life long enemies. Over the course of the story, Jimmy and Cinder find out that their knowledge of the other's race is full of misunderstandings, and things are not as they were led to believe. Their new friendship helps them work together to get out of a bad spot involving Mountain Trolls and ultimately brings their families together as well. Big "Disney" finish.

The freelance editor I'm working with, a person who is really making me push the envelope, wants me to be very distinctive using dragon language and troll language.  I've decided that dragons will speak a form of old English. However, that isn't easy as I thought. I've been learning a lot about "thee", "thy" and "thou". Thank God for the source of all information - Google.

I've been putting the Trolls farther down the intelligence scale, which may be unfair to trolls, but that's just the way it turned out. I have them speaking a broken, more basic English, hoping it is different enough from dragon language that young readers don't become confused. This is my first attempts to introduce dialects into a story and it has been a challenge for me. I think the different ways of using the languages makes the story stronger, but I don't want younger readers to get discouraged or have a struggle understanding the story.

I'll keep you posted and next time I'll see if I can post the first chapter.

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