On July 9, 2018, I published my debut novel and officially got myself out there in the self-publishing world.
Bowman Leafwing is always flying himself right into trouble. In an idyllic forest haven, a young wood sprite must make his own adventures, and Bowman does so by sneaking out at night to fly in the dark. After a race with his friends is interrupted by an owl, Bowman makes a discovery that the village of Wellwood hasn’t seen in generations.
Shadow sprites are a bit different from their cousins. Rather than having to open up a connection to their Spirit and voice a Prayer for magic to use, they are always connected to the Night Spirit. The Lady of Secrets grants Her children a few basic abilities that they can tap into at any time, but this ease comes at a price.
Direct sunlight will drive Her back, and it is painful for the sprite caught in it. Other forms of light are a bit itchy, but don’t have the same symbolic effect on them. As the Spirit retreats from sunlight, so does the magic the sprite needs to survive in the shadows. They can be blinded and their skin can be permanently lightened in places that were illuminated. Healing takes a while, though the Spirit will eventually reconnect if the sprite survives.
So I, like many, was very easily won over by the Good Omens miniseries over on Amazon. I loved the book, and this adaptation launched the bar for book-to-movie adaptations into space. I ended up wanting to try to write a story with the characters from it (as always, with an OC of mine thrown in to help me keep up momentum). This is an excerpt from the resulting WIP.
As the sudden loss of its exit thwarted the little creature, Aziraphale resumed his approach to fetch it.
He knelt down as soon as the little thing fell into his shadow. One hand left his side in preparation to hastily gather the little mouse up and put it outside (no way in heaven or earth did he have it in him to kill it). But he stopped.
I set some small but concrete goals for myself this month. It is the month of Camp NaNoWriMo, but I’m going to skip it this time around because I don’t think I have the focus to work on just one story that much. I may try to open prompts of some kind soon.
Air sprites are children of the Sky Spirit, the Lady of Freedom. She emphasizes creativity and out of the box thinking in all endeavors, even the magic She provides to the sprites. Prayers to the Sky Spirit usually have wildly varying results, with only a few of them being consistent in any way.
In most cases, a sprite can try to Pray for improved luck, or influence a certain outcome of events. They can also Pray for new ideas or perspectives to help them tackle a problem. This gives them a lot of choices for how they want to approach a task.
This AU version of Jacob still has roughly the same backstory as usual. Son of Greek immigrant parents, lived in Carlisle, Iowa. His father died when he was 8 years old and his mother didn’t remarry until he was 16. He’s an avid outdoorsman and is very good at roughing it, a skill which came in handy once he took up residence in Lilliput.
His memories of how he shipwrecked in the first place are very hazy. The next thing he knew, really, was waking up to find a tiny little person on him. True to Jacob fashion, he was grabby; he’s often grabby when he encounters tiny folk. Once it really sank in that he wouldn’t be leaving anytime soon, Chase sort of became his guide and his anchor. It’s kinda scary to be lost in a strange land, but he has a buddy so he’s okay!
The little folk of Lilliput tend to be very fussy. They’re full of energy and a willingness to scold him or boss him around, and Jacob finds this very amusing. He prefers it to them being scared of him, so he tends to go along with what they say without much argument. He lets Chase think that he’s the one who tamed the giant.
He’s been working on getting the local livestock used to him. A lot of cows have learned that he’s pretty good at giving them scritches, and he very rarely tries to lift them up, so they’re learning. The sheep are more skittish, but he has high hopes. Goats never cared how big he was.
It does bother him sometimes that he has no clue how to get home. He does his best not to let that show when the feeling comes up, since he doesn’t want his small friends to worry. They can’t do something about it any more than he can.
Elias has many middle names, and listing them all off gets tedious for him. The city/culture he’s from tends to have a tradition of adding more middle names based on titles earned and accomplishments won. He was already born with a few: Elias Orson Phineas Kingspeaker* Dawn. Since his mother is the Oracle of a temple, he assumed the role of a temple speaker just by being born. Very few people can make sense of what Cira Dawn says due to her difficulties communicating, but Elias always had a knack for it.
He takes after his mother in looks. Since his father is a deity with no set physical form, his natural physical traits were all inherited from Cira (deep red hair, sapphire eyes, sienna skin, strong nose). He’s met his dad a few times, and while there’s no animosity between them, a part of him does blame the guy for the way Cira’s mind was broken.
Elias is pansexual and genderfluid. Since he’s a shapeshifter, he can play around a bit with his presentation. Usually, he will give the people close to him an easy visual cue so they know which pronouns to use, but not always. He sometimes enjoys dating and develops crushes fast, but the thought of anything like marriage or any implication of “forever” sort of freaks him out for reasons he keeps quiet (he has a set “destiny” and he already has a hard enough time with that).
Elias as a character is fun to write because he’s what most people would call “overpowered”. He’s a demigod with a lot of abilities, including storm manipulation, shapeshifting, summoning items out of thin air, and making copies of himself. He also sort of combines his storm and mischief aspects into something he calls “electrickery,” in which he manipulates the electric impulses in someone’s brain. He saves that for dire circumstances since it’s hard to do.
* ”Kingspeaker” is the most convenient translation from what the word is in his first language, since it doesn’t have a distinction between a male and female sovereign.
Chase’s actual name is Qi Shi, which according to my research means “to enlighten”. I guess if he keeps chattering away like he’s prone to do, he’s bound to teach something, right? He and his sister Minnie (Minxia, or ”Bright halo”), were given anglicized names by their parents when they moved to the US from Jiuquan. Since they were young kiddos who had to move rather suddenly, their parents wanted to give them some kind of edge, socially.
Chase is bisexual (happy pride month!). He has an ex-girlfriend and an ex-boyfriend, both relatively short relationships that ended on friendly terms. He helped set Jacob Andris up on the one and only date Jacob went on.
Chase’s health is actually quite fragile – he’s not athletic due to his asthma, and cold season tends to lay him low once a year. Despite that, the whole reason his family moved to Iowa was for cleaner air and a less stressful environment, so he’s doing better than he might be elsewhere.
I really really love how much Chase has grown into his own character since I first invented him. He’s technically a side character in the story he originated in, but I could probably write a whole story about him and his misadventures (Chase in Lilliput, anyone?).
Water sprites come in a couple distinct varieties, with different fin shapes and general skintone ranges to fit their environment.
Lake/River: Their finwings are the most reminiscent of butterfly wings. They have soft curved shapes, and the patterning on them tends to run perpendicular to the many bones within the fins. These sprites have a silvery grey range of skintones.
Ocean/Tropical: These water sprites have more blue than grey in their skin, and often the pattern on the front side of their finwings is lighter than on the back. The patterning tends to run parallel to the bones in the finwings, which are slightly more angular in shape.
Deep Ocean: Elusive deep sea water sprites’s finwings are very sharp in shape, and don’t bear any patterns on their own. These sprites have very dark blue or grey skin, and the fins on their legs are more pronounced than on other varieties. Their skin and wings can light up in bioluminescent patterns for communication, and because of their deep ocean adaptation they are extremely durable beings.