Thursday, January 13, 2005

of Mice and Monarchies

3:12 pm. Sigh. Apparently this is not a writing day. So much for the best-laid plans of mice and men.

Oh, speaking of mice. A couple of days ago I went into our porch and heard a rustling sound. There is an open bag of cat food sitting in the corner as our six starving motherless, kittens...require feeding several times a day. So I bumped the bag with my toe and this mouse leaped in the air. He couldn't quite make it out of the bag, but not for want of trying. So I called Jim, he grabbed a work glove and went rooting around in the cat food until he'd caught the little dude. He threw it out the door and watched the six vultures set in for the chase. End of that story.

But don't worry, I have another. This morning at work I heard this little rustling sound, and after awhile I caught a glimpse of a little mouse scurrying around. He'd found a dry soup package that I'd had here in case I needed a meal one day in town, and he'd nibbled through it. So after lunch my boss brought back some cheese and set up our trap, and went back to work. I peeked behind the cupboard and watched the mouse proceed to eat all the cheese and run all over the trap without it going off. Then he resumed work on my dry soup. (Yes, I could have thrown it out in the meantime, but THEN where would he have come looking? I'll leave it right there until he's a goner.) For over two hours I've listened to him (and sometimes seen him) move around over there, not four feet from me. I think Rustle is having a nap right now. It's blessedly quiet at the moment.

By 11:15 this morning I'd gotten a whole 200 words or so written around customers. The phone rang incessantly this morning. The two best writing hours of the day were shot, and I'm not good at late starting. Someday I may have to learn to do that, but today, it just wasn't happening. (By then a good percentage of my concentration was listening to Rustle, too, which didn't help).

So I decided to declare the remainder of the day a Shann Day. I'm receiving extremely valuable feedback on the topic of Christianity being portrayed in a fantasy setting over at Faith in Fiction, and spent some time going through that. Then I started reading through Zette's assignments for 2yn to jumpstart ideas as to what decisions about my world I should make first.

Today's topic is government. So many fantasies have monarchies or empires, but Zette gave us a long list of governmental types to consider. If I choose an empire, it will be because it works best with my story, not because of laziness. I'm getting a bit of an idea as to what Shann will be up to in the neighboring country, and why he was sent, etc. His own governmental leaders would say they were under God. Did you know that a hagiocracy is government by a group of persons believed to be holy? That might work. Or possibly hierocracy, rule by a priest or clergy. Here's a couple of interesting definitions: thearchy is government based on divine sovereignty, while theocracy is government by church officials who believe they have divine sovereignty. Zette did not quote a source for her definitions, of which these are but a few of very many.

I thought about playing the name game and choosing my language styles, but I'm going to need internet access to follow it to the next level, so I have to do that at home. I can pop on for a few minutes at a time at work, but can't really do extensive research here, as it ties up the company line. I usually open a page online, disconnect, read the email or thread or whatever, formulate an answer in Word, then pop back online to post it. So now I connect for just a couple of minutes again.

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