Author Journal: Of Maps and Heroes

Old World MapPaper littered the card table around my sketch of a portion of Elderland, the fantasy world of my Tales of Faeraven trilogy. I worried my bottom lip and murmurred to myself. “I’m in big trouble.”

It seems fantasy worlds are much easier to imagine than to chart. With the artist waiting for my preliminary sketches, the rubber had to meet the road.

It wasn’t that I was unfamiliar with Elderland. After years of carrying the story around in my head, not to mention the year spent writing the novel and the additional months of editing, I knew it like the back of my hand.

No, the problem stemmed from the amount of detail an epic adventure requires. The three books of my trilogy chew through a lot of terrain. Certain plot elements demand accurate propotions and even dictate the shape of the landscape.

I paused to respond to a Facebook comment from the artist who will render the finished maps. “Oh boy, do we have our work cut out for us. Why’d I have to create such a complex world?”

She responded with a Pollyanna-esque, “It’ll be great.”

This remark from someone who, also a writer, has been known to carry an entire universe in her head failed to reassure me. I’m not sure what I’ve done to warrant such an expression of faith. How could I fulfill her expectations?

Enter my husband, John, who gave me valuable advice on the geography of Elderland and even offered to draw a neater version of my map. John has a mathematical bent whereas I, well, I write poetry. I accepted his offer.

The last time I accepted an offer from this fellow, it turned out well. 😮

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Written by Janalyn Voigt

Janalyn Voigt

As an author I love to escape with readers into creative worlds of fiction in three genres: medieval epic fantasy, historical fiction, and romantic mystery. My aim is to make this website an immersive experience for readers. Care to join us?

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2 thoughts on “Author Journal: Of Maps and Heroes”

  1. I see the importance of getting it right. If your novel does well and takes on the kind of following such as Tolkien or other fantasy writers enjoyed (wouldn’t that be GREAT?) you won’t want to have to go back and ‘fix it’. Fans of this type of fiction can get very particular about the details! (Not trying to worry you – “It’ll be great”!!

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