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Sunday, October 09, 2005

An aborted fantasy novel project

No, this isn't an entry about world domination. This is more about a dream I had ever since I was 13, a dream that had lasted until today. Eight years ago, when I was 13, the very first day when Internet was installed in my home, I immediately came up with the name Eliar Swiftfire (!!!!) to join a role-playing chatroom.

THAT got me very hooked into role-playing, a little something I am still doing today. After that, I started writing a backstory for this Eliar Swiftfire character (he's a wizard), a tale about a young boy who was chosen, along with a band of other elite mages, to lay siege upon the fortress of an evil necromancer, and miraculously survived. However, he suffered grievous wounds and lost consciousness outside the ruins of the fortress.

A girl training to be a swordsfighter, Nadia, found him, and nursed him back to health. She was a cold and quiet maiden (!!!!!!) yet somehow, they started falling for each other. But Eliar fucked up, and the girl left, and since then, wrecked with guilt and regret, all he could do was try to seek this girl again.

... unbeknownst to him, a massive war was about to erupt within his continent, and he was about to be swept away by forces he cannot control.

I was 13. I thought the backstory I wrote for the character was pretty damned good. I wanted to develop upon it. What kind of war is this? Will Eliar finally seek the woman he loves? What is his role in this war? What kind of world is he staying in?

Lots of questions emerged. I wanted so much to expand upon what I have. Thankfully, a cousin of mine who used to roleplay as well was in the midst of developing a fantasy world for his character (I stole the name 'Swiftfire' from his character, who was called Johann Swiftfire). For a few months, I was excited, attempting to write a novel of sorts based on all the tale.

Alas my cousin lost interest and left. Double alas when I was left with no one to develop this tale with. I was only 14 then and I lacked the writing skills to write something as ambitious and big as this.

My vision then was very simple, create a massive world that combines technology and magic, both fantasy and sci-fi. Write a story based on this world, and everyone else can do the same too. The first person I found to help me out was a senior in my secondary school, Alex Yuen, or Alanded, since then, we spent YEARS trying to develop the entire history and geography for this world of ours, and at the same time map out the whole story we intend to write.

End of 2000, both of us started writing the so-called first draft of our novel, we only managed a few chapters. It wasn't the best-written work ever, and no, I don't think it was as good as my Blogathon story (go to the August archives to read it), but it was pretty damned fun. And it was one of the main driving forces of my writing life. Our styles clashed quite a lot, but it was good practice. Even though it, unfortunately, bore some similarities to Harry Potter books (it has wizards studying in schools too), which, I honestly didn't read until long after I've started planning and writing.

Unfortunately, various factors caused us to abandon this project, Alanded citing that he wants to redo everything due to the massive plot holes that hindered us from continuing the story any further.

That was nearly two years ago. Since then, Alanded had gone to Sydney, and I, to Perth, and became a filmmaker (Hah!).

Eliar Swiftfire, the supposed name of a character in my story, became my pseudonym. Originally a character modeled after me, the name became me. The world? I don't know. Alanded is planning everything from scratch, all we have done for the past few years are pretty much undone. Yet my inability to contact him these days have me wondering what the hell is he planning. (last time I met him, he had stack of notes scribbled for this world of ours) Judging from our last conversations (weeks ago), the world might become too dark for my liking.

However, as I've said before, since I was 13, I always had a dream of trying to create a world. A world where everyone into writing or roleplaying can participate in. Alanded wanted to create a flash-based world, with mini-games and such (think Neopets, or Gaia Online). Short stories, flash animation or comics will be done based on this world. I have different ideas, I want short films too. Things that can add to the flavour ot this.

But will this ever become a reality? I know not the answer. I assume this is not a topic most of my readers here are interested in, however, I may revisit this topic again sometime soon depending on how everything's developing.