This week we're exploring The Birthday Present/Millhaven Castle a little bit more. The book is a pairing of two longer short stories (about 10-20k each) and I've highlighted below some of the main characters to look for in these stories.
Lucy Hintara (The Birthday Present). Heroine. She is human and comes out of a last hidden colony to speak to the Emperor. She lands on the doorstep of a boy's school and her adventures go on from there. She is a bit of a flawed character--overly brave to come out on this mission and a bit stubborn. Imagine a naive, ditzy girl wearing a school-girl uniform with her hair in curly pigtails and you've got the idea.
Alyce Lomlossa (Millhaven Castle). Heroine. Unlike Lucy she is very quiet and she doesn't come out of her sheltered group, the Sherbans, voluntarily. Instead, she is summoned by a king for really shady reasons. Alyce's people dress in a self-consciously traditional way, so Alyce does also--but she has a sense of humor about it and like Lucy, she can be very, very stubborn. Imagine a girl wearing an old-fashioned 19th century farm dress and her hair in braided puffs around her ears and you've got the idea.
General Metagaf (The Birthday Present.) Comedy Character. He is supervisor of the boy's school that Lucy strays into. He is a prominent official with much experience, but is now quite out of touch and deaf as well. While he believes he's in charge, he's often clueless and just gets on the boy's nerves. He's garrulous and rough around the edges, as he's accepted things in the world for a long time, so I wouldn't call him sensitive. Imagine a grumpy, surprisingly sneaky man with tufts of white hair and a wrinkled, stuffy uniform and you've got the idea.
Blancha, Ralph, and Lulu (Millhaven Castle.) Comedy Characters. They are other Sherban young people, who are Alyce's friends. When they are invited to the ball, she must travel with them. She's known them since childhood. Imagine Blancha is slender and some might call her pretty. She wears white a lot and often deliberately tries to misunderstand situations. Imagine Ralph is a teenager with a flop of untidy hair and he's awkward as the dickens, mostly hanging his mouth open and getting in the way. Lulu is very young and seems even younger than she is. Imagine a friendly, sometimes rude girl, she likes to make noise but actually has little to say.
And there will be more updates.
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I live surrounded by cultivated fields that rapidly give way to wild flowers, wild plants, and wild life. I get most of my ideas while drifting innocuously around my house and some of those ideas get into print.
Bellevere House has been featured on Ezvid Wiki video "10 Wonderfully Inventive Retellings That Interpret Classic Stories in a New Way." Click to see the video.