Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Creating a Dragon Mythology

When the idea for a dragon fantasy series came to me, the first thing I did was decide what kind of dragon would be in my novel. What powers would he have? What would he look like? What would he eat? What was his temperament? How intelligent would he be? What kind of moral and ethical ideas would drive his behavior?

I've read some dragon novels, many of them where the dragons worked in concert with humans, letting riders on their backs or somehow sharing magic with humans. Of course, there's the Smaug from The Hobbit and his greed and cleverness. Check out Wikipedia's long list of dragons and their descriptions. Dragon myths have been with us for a long time. They're found in the tales of ancient Greece. Stories of dragons have been interlaced with other legends in many cultures for over four thousand years. There are websites that described facts about dragons as if they're real creatures alive in our world today. I won't even mention dragons in the gaming world.

But I want my dragon, Kerik, to be unique. I made Kerik smart and armed him with the memories of his ancestors. He understands more of war than any human general with the experience he can call on. He's secretive, mostly to preserve his own life. He doesn't want to share anything with humans that could be used against him. He doesn't trust humans, but against his dragon nature he cares for some of them. And how he looks? He's black with golden eyes and a graceful body. I don't want to give away more of his secrets. You'll have to read the book but you can see what he looks like. Taria Reed at Crescent Moon Press caught him perfectly.

Have you ever created your own mythology about a land or a creature? Are you looking forward to The Desolation of Smaug? Any favorite dragon myths come to mind?
You can find First Dragon at:
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Nook coming soon.
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  1. Golden eyes sure stand out. Fun to make up your own mythology about a creature

  2. I like Kerik already :) How cool to make up your own creature like this! My older brother was really into the Dragonlance books when we were kids, so of course I read them, too. I loved learning about the dragons - it was one of my favorite parts.

  3. I think this whole process is very cool. I've never done it myself—created my own mythology—and I really admire all of you who do.

    Have a great Wednesday. ☺

  4. I have just run into an important character in my own novel. He is someone who will be around later in the series, so it is important to know him very well. I have spent almost two weeks trying to capture him completely in my mind. What drives him? Scares him? Makes him happy? Exactly, who is he???? Until I know those things, I can't go forward.

    Now my guy is a PERSON. I can't imagine the amount of thinking you did about a DRAGON. The possibilities were endless....

  5. If he speaks, can I imagine he sounds like Sean Connery? Yeah, I loved the movie Dragonheart.

  6. Such interesting ideas, Sue! And I think it would be a little daunting to add another to the long line of dragons already in the annals of mythology and fiction. Kerik sounds outstanding!

  7. Alex, I actually read some bad mythology about black dragons but when with it anyway.
    Pat, if I had half your creativity, I might have come up with something better than golden.
    Liz, I've always liked Dragons, too.
    Dana, I'm definitely going to do the interpreting and recreating mythology for my next series too.
    Robin, you make a good point. I had to make sure my dragon didn't think too much like a person.
    LD, no he doesn't sound like Sean, but then who does? There's only one guy with that voice.

  8. Ooh! I love me some dragons! As a fantasy writer, I have created whole subcultures and worlds. (Yes, as in plural.)

    Your basis reminded me of "Flight of Dragons," that old cartoon with a mix of dragon fantasy in all my old hard-core fantasy novels. Oh man do I feel like a geek. Regardless, I love this stuff!

  9. I love dragons, although I personally haven't seen too many stories featuring them, sadly. Kerik sounds like such a fascinating character--that artwork of him on the cover is amazing!

  10. I love to spin off mythology. The basics are there, but I embellish a lot.
    Your dragon sounds very cool.

  11. Fantastic cover! I love creating my own myths. Or taking an existing one and twisting it.

  12. It's awesome to have a dragon as more than just a creature in the story, but a real character. I love the idea of retaining all the knowledge from his ancestors.

  13. I have never given much thought to creating my own mythological creature, but it's obvious you have. Kerik seems more human than dragon which makes me connect with him. I'm headed over over to Taria's page to read more.

  14. Oh I can't wait to see Smaug!!!

    I love your cover!! Dragons just rock.

  15. Hi Susan .. I love the cover .. and can now see Kerik keeping his golden and dark secrets to himself ..

    I admire you for creating a dragon who has learnt the wisdom of his ancestors ...

    Cheers .. and no I haven't created a mythical figure ... Hilary