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This is a weblog of one person's multi-year quest to write, draw, and publish a graphic novel. This is my story: my trials, tribulations, successes and failures. -- Robert Stradley, Weekend Artist
Started rewrite of the Races and Cultures notes from 2018. Inconsistancies were noted and revised.
The Structure of notes in this tome was changed to: Name of Race, History, Location, Habitat, Appearance and Physical Attributes, Food, Clothing, Family structure, Community organization, Common names, Core values and Beliefs, Magie, Race to Race interaction, Trade, and then Language -- with Dictionary, Common Phrases, Epithets, and Sayings.
Calendar was rationalized, using powers of 8, the magie number of Amberleigh. 8 days per week, 5 weeks per month, 8 months per year, 320 days per year. Days in Leeland are 15% longer than ours, with 64 seconds per minute, 64 minutes per hour, 24 hours per day.
The details of the Great Plague were fleshed out to keep consistancy over the various areas and cultures.
Wrote the Elfes section, the easiest and longest to write. Added all notes on 20 Familles and Houses, including historical notes on defunct houses and the Nouveau Familles. It turns out the Nouveau Familles aren't as politically cohesive as originally imagined, due to the semi-chaotic nature of expansion in all directions. Fleshed out the Family Sidhe, Gwendolyn's family at the tip of the Oligarchy including the role of Grandmere. This will require a rewrite of sections of the Crumbling Castle Chronicle as we bring in the political maneuvering of the Oligarchy and Baron von Wurtemburg's efforts to stymie it.
The language of the Elfes is Franglais, a modified French/English concatenation.
Bethrothal notes were defined, but marriage notes which are lengthy and complicated for Elfes are currently left open. They will need to be codified before the final Chronicle on Marriage and Babies is written; that occurs after the Great Conflict is resolved.
Drew and colored examples of male and female Elfes. Made a standard Elf design sheet.
Wrote the Zwergen section, also relatively easy after consulting the notes on Rolfe Felsig. The Zwergen culture is based on the Pensylwania Deitch from family memories and information on mining as modified to their short stature. Researched and wrote the Fersommling section, a Festival combining elements of a Deitch Folk Festival with a real Fersommling dinner.
The language of the Zwergen is the Pennsylfania Deutsch of my grandparents, a Plat-Deitsch/English conglomerate with the strong accent of Deitsch and words that are somewhere in between.
Gathered notes on the wedding of Gwen and Rolfe, including the bundling bed and the marriage bed as well as the rock breaking ceremony. Gwen and Rolfe are married in the Prelude, prior to the Great Conflict.
Developed the Zwergen religion based on Gott and Belsnickle.
Drew and colored Rolfe and Bluette, his sister as examples of Zwergen.
Started the Human sections, Midlanders, Foresters, Mountain Men, Calabrians, and the msicellaneous groups such as Freelanders, Scarlets, Bandits, and Pirateers.
Researched and wrote the Mountain Men section based on Slavic peoples and traditions. Reworked the geography to include food producing lands in the Finger Lake region. [They must have something else to eat besides meat.]
The language of the Mountain Men is Tata, a combination of English and Eastern European Cyrilic Slavic languages. The primary festival is Frost Fest, overseen by Father Frost and Sneignoda.
Developed the Mountaineer Vanir Pantheon of Njord the wise old man, Erce the loving fertile woman, and their child: Frija who is mostly nice, but occasionally crabby when tired and mischievous when bored. They live in the Vanir land of Vanhalla, over the rainbow.
Drew and colored the Mountain Men, Ogluszic and his sister Agniezia.
Took some time to expand the Manorial/Baronial system of Feudalism in the Midlands. It needed to include all the variations of people and circumstances used during the Great Conflict by Baron von Würtenheim. It is based on the Feudal concepts of France, Germany, and England during the Middle Ages, with no king and a bunch of rowdy Barons vieing for power and control.
The language of the Midlands is Midish, the central basis for the definition of the human tongue. Since there is no central authority to confer standardization, Midish has as many variations as there are Manors. A Hollywood/Modern Romance version of Robin Hood English is used with some dialectical Irish thrown in for variation.
Drew and colored the Midland Barons.
Calabria was detailed based on Renaissance Italy and the interesting City-State politics and problems of the Renaissance. Capitalistic competition and transportaion by sea is the basis of the economy and country. Each City-state has a commecial speciality, its own food, its own climate and geography, and its own diety and festivals. Much of the country was based on notes from Claudio's backstory and adventures.
List of City-States: Borghetto, Collectivecchio, Firenzia, Geniale a Mere, Milano, Monticello, Neopoli, Pisa, Raverino, Robbia, Szforza, Stabbia, Tore a Mare, Venetzia, Urbanisimo. The pantheon of the Calabrians is based on the deities of each of the City-States.
The language of the Calabrians is an Italian/English blend.
Drew and colored male and female Calabrians, Claude and his sister Francessca.
The Foresters of the Black Forest are an interesting bunch of loners and individualists living the good life deep in the primeval forest. Based on the hunters and trappers of the early American west combined with the settlers of Vermont and New Hampshire, these people are strong, hearty, and insular.
The language was a bit of fun, combining New England English with backwoods Appalachian.
Drew and colored male and female Foresters.
Pirateers are the counterculture sea pirates of the Tyrrhenian and Argus Sea. They picture significantly in the Great Conflict, so a background culture was needed. The pirates of the golden age of piracy was the obvious Hollywoodian answer. It was also quite fun.
Talk like a Pirate Day was the source of many of the nautical language euphamisms in the Pirateer language.
Drew and colored male and female Pirateers, Red Flintstone and Black Anise.
Also wrote the miscellaneous sections on No Man's Land including the fameous Chateaus located there. Also wrote and illustrated the Scarlets.
The Swamp Thals were fleshed out using Beaumarais's background information on Thals. Also researched the swamps and bayous of Lousiana for the geography of the Swampland.
The language is primarily a Modern Romance version of Cajun/English mix with some Bayou and Baton Rouge words and sayings.
Finished up Races and Cultures with the Forest Thal section. This was the hardest to write, combining Zanteena's and Cyrus's stories and background with the general Thallic culture from Beau. Zanteena is a Thallic Shamaness of great Seidr and magie power, and is half-sister to Gwendolyn. .
Generally the Forest Thals have a migratory hunting/fishing/planting culture as I remember the stories of the Eastern Forest Indians I absorbed 50+ years ago as an Order of the Arrow Boy Scout, adapted to fit the Thallic ways of Leeland.
The language of the Forest Thals is a melodic vowel rich combination of Celtic Welsh and the Cajun/English of the Thals.
Drew and colored male and female Thals, Beaumaurais and Zanteena.
Edited the Races and Cultures tome, and then added the illustrations.
Started writing " How I Write the Amberleigh Chronicles™ Webcomics and Novellas" book. In this first book I describe the the artistic endeavors and shortcuts I took in developing the characters, the backgrounds, and the storyline of the Amberleigh Chronicles™ as a Weekend Artist. The primary purpose of this book is to show the reader that, using what I have learned over the last 15 years, you too can write webcomics and novellas and publish them on-line as a Weekend Artist.
Published Amberleigh Chronicles: Field Guide to the Races and Cultures of Leeland.
Completed and published How I Write the Amberleigh Chronicles™ Webcomics and Novellas" book
Note: The Amberliegh ChroniclesTM Webcomic is on hiatus. Twisted Tail ProductionsTM [TTP] continues to develop the Amberleigh Chronicles adventures in book form. The Webcomic will be continued sometime in the future.
TTP is also developing Steampunk Engineering, a book containing a series of monographs applying Engineering and Scientific Principles to Steamwerks in Steampunk designs, giving writers of Steampunk a bit of reality to their fantastic stories.
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