Is the book always better than the movie? Are there any exceptions?

By eugena On August 31st, 2011

A WordPress Prompt Post — Audience, what do you think?

No. Nothing is ever always better than something else. Usually for those of you who read a book and enjoy it then it is a disappointment to see the movie or television adaptation. It will never be similar enough (some exceptions).

As a writer, technically, I could write anything any way I want. Novels are generally written as they come to me and I edit them. Structure per se is not a necessity.

Movies, however, are an entirely different story. The majority of American scripts are written in a particular formula or structure. There are certain variations and sometimes trend changes. To a certain degree, I have started planning my novels in the same structure as a screenplay, at least for its backbone.

An example in action: Number of Characters

The Age of Merrik: The Anointing has a very large cast. I will be cutting down on that cast in Rise of the New Masters, but will probably be expanding it in Dark Desires since it focuses on the Swordmasters. When I wrote the screenplay adaptation of The Age of Merrik: The Anointing, however, I reduced the number of characters and turned The Four and Miriam into two characters.

Movies and novels are generally different. They usually can be both appreciated. Fans may not like a book’s adaptation. I think the Stardust movie is much more enjoyable than the book.

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New Masters and Dark Desires Simultaneous Development

By eugena On March 26th, 2011

I am writing more of Dark Desires than Rise of the New Masters, but New Masters will be a “bookend” to may of the events of Dark Desires. It will provide closure and return The Age of Merrik series to a more lineal development.

I originally planned 6-8 novels but right now here are the definites in reading order:

Dark Desires
The Age of Merrik: The Anointing
The Age of Merrik: Rise of the New Masters

It will probably be a very short “Rise” and although I will try to have it stand on its own, reading Dark Desires will give the reader a better understanding of the small details.

Killing off the Cast

For Dark Desires, I will have to create a lot of swordmasters. And most of them will die off. They are having a massive war, after all. So here is a list of known masters.

**Spoiler Warning**

Anara, Elenas, and Children — Historical figures, featured in DD, TA, ROTNM
Areya – TA, ROTNM
Eleya, Regina – DD, TA, ROTNM
Merrik – TA, ROTNM
Nathan – DD, TA, ROTNM
Zaedrif – DD, TA, ROTNM
Zibiah – DD, TA

And for the “floater” awards: Skye, Zaelen, Nemara

The characters get last names in DD and ROTNM.

I suppose King Malik has to get defeated in one of these books, but I might give him a long reign for now.

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Zine Article: Eleya, Zaedrif, and The Fall of Nemea

By eugena On February 11th, 2011

Eleya has suffered much sorrow in her life. After surviving the destruction of Antham, her home country, she seeks refuge with the Sword Masters and the Wizards of the North. After revealed as the prophesized Regina, Eleya loses all opportunity of a life just for herself. She takes on the mantle of ruler and becomes a powerful figure with the Sword Masters, second only to The Serafin.

Because of Skye’s prophecy regarding Zaedrif and Eleya, she stays in Nemea with Zaedrif and Zibiah. Zaedrif and Eleya grow closer together and eventually become engaged. Zaedrif’s childhood friend, Oroco, is in love with him. Zaedrif cannot let go of his unresolved feelings for Oroco, and this becomes a rift between Zaedrif and Eleya.

Zaedrif abandoned Nemea shortly before its fall, presumably due to his involvement with Oroco. He left Eleya alone to defend it. Nathan of Anthama (who renamed his country in honor of Eleya’s home country) came to Eleya’s rescue and sacrificed himself to save her.

Many Nemeans died in the battle and more became slaves of Malik’s generals.

In The Anointing, both Areya and Cle’an become the voices of the victims of The Fall of Nemea. They both lost loved ones. Edric, Areya’s husband, was the brother of Valerie, Cle’an’s fiancée.

Although Zaedrif dies at the end of The Anointing, his memory lives on in Rise of the New Masters. Eleya must confront her past, including her relationship with Zaedrif.

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Zine Article: John + Miriam

By eugena On February 11th, 2011

John and Miriam are the central couple of the latter part of The Age of Merrik: The Anointing. Their naivety speaks to their simple desire to connect with others. They found love in the midst of war, a reoccurring theme throughout history in humanity.

They are naïve, because Miriam chooses to live a sheltered life, and John is too afraid to stand solely on his own. John, however, grows as the story progresses. After Cle’an leaves to visit the hidden survivors of Shattered Sky, John becomes the first Second to Merrik.

They are devoted to each other, and their relationship is a symbol for the relationship of others. Areya sees hope in Miriam’s child, a replacement for the two children she miscarried. Surprisingly, Zsastar encourages John to find Miriam for their child’s sake, foreshadowing Zsastar’s disconnection to and abandonment from his biological parents.

Additional Notes (Blog Tags): Areya’s husband was Edric. Miriam will name her child Merris.

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Rise of the New Masters Continues

By eugena On February 11th, 2011

I’ve got several concrete plots going, and I have already written a draft ending–now just have to get there.

CONFIRMED RETURNING CHARACTERS:
Merrik, Eleya, Oroco, Zaedrif, ZIbiah, Zsastar, Jonas

and

Areya, Miriam and new child (whom she names “Merris” in reference to events of The Anointing)

There will be several new sword masters and old sword masters (that did not necessarily get mentioned in The Anointing).

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Defining Characters

By eugena On February 11th, 2011

Characters become part of you. You are their creator, their “god.” You define their beginning, trials, end. Sometimes when writing, you amaze yourself in the amount of evolution/personal growth you go through.

I remember when I first wrote The Age of Merrik under the title Crystal Destiny, focusing more on the powers of the crystals. I had three main characters other than Merrik, Queen Zira, General Zsastar, and Zaedrif. I eventually kept some ideas from Zira to keep her as a character of the same name in the sword master past**. She was married to Zsastar I, the namesake of General Zsastar. To a certain extent, Zastar of Crystal Destiny and Zsastar of The Anointing are the same. For Zaedrif, I only kept the name. While genetic characteristics are similar, the first Zaedrif was merely a teenager, adopted son/ward of both Zira and Zsastar, their common bond. Then Zaedrif became a bit older, a noble swordmaster, more like that of Zaedrif of The Age of Merrik: The Screenplay Adaptation.

While Oroco and the other members of The Four have always been part of the story since version one (Kaeya did have development), Oroco became a focal point of version three (final) Zaedrif. Zaedrif and Oroco are childhood friends. They shared in a very naive love, which eventually develops deeper. Oroco can’t let go, but Zaedrif can, because *enter Eleya.* I really like the name Eleya, one of the many that I made up. It’s perfect for her. Merris is ok, and Merris becomes *spoiler* the name of Miriam and John’s first child.

I could have left it at that. But when I began to develop an even deeper history for the sword master characters, I decided that this is really why Zaedrif betrayed his people. He did not cower in fear, he was not incapacitated. He failed them because he chose Oroco. Idiot. Choosing a pitiful love over responsibility for an entire nation.

Compare him with Merrik. Again and again he chose his responsibility as a leader over that of his own love, interest, and family. Yet Zaedrif is supposed to be a sword master and closer to the god character (Serafin).

Who are Merrik’s parents? Two-fold question. His bond/adoptive parents are much like himself. They both chose their positions as leaders first in as their priorities. As for his blood parents, I promise at least one of them will eventually be revealed. Did they make the same choice? Yes, I could answer that question, but I prefer to keep you all hooked.

Reflecting on it now, the Zaedrif/Oroco connection has an impact on many things in the storyline. Cle’an was once a minor character, taking entrance and exit, with Jierin then on stage. Now he became more rounded. He has a past. All characters do, but the more minor they are, the less the pasts are revealed. (Perfect fodder for fanfictions.) Cle’an, native of Nemea, obeyed his lord, Prince Zaedrif, to send Oroco away and protect her; he left his beloved Valerie. While Zaedrif’s love lived, Cle’an’s did not. Neither did Cle’an’s beloved queen escape unscathed. Rise of the New Masters reveals more of her suffering.

Many love Eleya. Mostly courtly love. Look that one up if you need to. They admire her, adore her. Is she god on Earth? No, but that doesn’t stop Zsastar in his “create-a-Serafin” plan.

Another character I enjoyed the development of is Areya, but I will save that for another post.

** Zira later renames herself Kerris, and this is the name recorded in Swordmaster historical records. Therefore, Zira is tagged as “Kerris”. The “Zira” tag is for the main character of version one. Eleya later becomes the main character instead of Zira.

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