May 31, 2014

300: Rise of Fantasy

Return to Tar'Tron
science fiction cover
Last May I blogged about reaching 200 posts to this blog. Now, one year later, this is the 300th blog post. Last June I began developing my ideas about the writing career of a character named Thomas in my science fiction novel Exode. Within the Ekcolir Reality, Thomas went to New York City to launch his writing career, but he became a carrier of a swarm of alien nanites. During the past year I've developed an understanding of how Thomas found his way into our Reality and the role that he played in making sure that I would be the one to "inherit" both his nanites and those brought to Earth by Izhiun. Here, in this blog post, I want to explore the influence that Thomas has had, and continues to have, on the rise of fantasy in this blog.

For the past few weeks I've been thinking a lot about Thomas Iwedon's fantasy novel Daveed the Luk'ie. I'd previously mentioned another novel, Return to Tar'Tron, also written by Tomas Iwedon. I guess I have always previously thought of Return to Tar'Tron as a science fiction story, but now I'm wondering if Thomas might have entered into his "fantasy period" as a writer as soon as he had his mental breakdown. I like the idea that Thomas only found it possible to write fantasy after being institutionalized for mental instability.

Thomas' secret ring
Thomas' end game
What if Return to Tar'Tron is also a fantasy novel? I've previously outlined how the writing of Thomas was influenced by his odd genetics and his environmental exposure to nanites. How might removal of those nanites and his loss of contact with Trysta and the Sedronic Domain shape his imagining of Return to Tar'Tron as a fantasy story?

Fantasy cover - version 1
Previously, in classical science fiction style, I imagined Obsidia as an alien from the distant planet Tar'tron. In order to transform my thinking about the book cover, I'm trying to picture Obsidia as a mythical creature such as an elf rather than think about her as an alien.

I've been trying to imagine the "Hierion Domain" as an adequately ambiguous name that could be interpreted as a magical domain for fantasy stories. So, if Obsidia originates in the Hierion Domain then how should she be magically summoned to Earth?

In this first draft of a fantasy-style cover (to the right) I tried to depict Obsidia in both our world and within the Hierion Domain. See below for a description of where I obtained the photographic elements that went into this composite image.

I tried to give Obsidia an elfish fantasy appearance within the Hierion Domain (inside the crystal ball).

What I'd really like is to have an animated version of the cover that shows a version of Obsidia with non-human features emerging from the Hierion Domain and transforming into human form.

The animated gif (to the left) is my first draft for such an animation.

The individual elements used for this cover are shown below.

Image Credits. I used two images from Robert Elsmore at deviantART.

I wonder who this model is?

For the top part of the background I used an photograph of St. John's Chapel Tower of London from deviantART. This photo and the next three, all with huge pixel counts, were very useful.

The bottom-right part of the background is an image from Wikimedia Commons.

A second image from Wikimedia Commons has a few buildings from a "hidden" village, hidden there in the image, in the background inside the crystal ball.

The crystal ball is from vanhookc at Flickr.

To make the elfish appearance of Obsidia within the Hierion Domain, I used Elven Archer by atistatplay at deviantART.

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