In my last blog, I wrote about the value of creating a playlist as you write and for your reader’s enjoyment as they read your books. I said I would share with you my playlist for ‘The Fellowship Of The King – a Christian Geek’s Guide to Kingdom Purpose’. Well, here it is. If you’d like to buy the book to go along with it you can get it from Amazon.
The book is a guide to discovering what your purpose may be for God’s kingdom while you’re here on earth; your royal assignment and quests, what God has laid on your heart to do for others, and the personality, experiences and natural abilities He gave you to accomplish those quests. Quizzes and note pages are included.
‘The Fellowship Of The King’
The first few songs are for the introduction to Kingdom Purpose as we go about our daily lives. Axe or Sword starts the second part of the book which takes you on a journey to discover who you may be in a fantasy realm and what the king there would ask you to do as a Dwarf, Elf, Halfling, Nord or Imperial (with leeway to choose any other race you’re familiar with).
The book has note pages to write down what you discover and blank pages for your artistic talent to shine as you imagine yourself in another world. If you would like some inspiration for that, check out my Pinterest board on The Fellowship Of The King.
PLAYLIST titles and artists
Whom Shall I Fear (God of Angel Armies) – by Chris Tomlin
There and Back Again – by Chris Daughtry
Bring Me to Life – by Evanescence
These Dreams – by Heart
The Kingdom – by Starfield
Desert Song – by Hillsong
Only King Forever – by Elevation Worship
Mighty Warrior – by Elevation Worship
Axe or Sword? – from The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
The Ring Goes South – from The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
The White Tree – from The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
The Medallion Calls – from Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl
Concerning Hobbits – from The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
(For Mountain Dwarves)
Durin’s Folk – from The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
(For Deep Dwarves)
The Bridge of Khazad Dum – from The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
(For High Elves)
Evenstar – from The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
(For Wood Elves)
Vox – by Sarah McLachlan
(For Grey Elves)
Breath of Life – from The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
Minas Tirith – from The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
No Quarter – by Led Zeppelin
I managed to find videos to go along with these by simply googling the title+video, but because of copyright laws, I can’t add them here. Those of you who are tech savvy will hopefully be able to create a playlist on your device.
If you think any other songs would fit the playlist, you’re welcome to add them in the comments. Enjoy!
Til next time, know you are loved by the One who created you in His image with an imagination that invites you to take a step beyond.
Ready to have more fun? This week I’m sharing an excerpt from a blog a friend of mine wrote. She’s a talented artist and her heart is to help people discover their creativity. Here’s why I’m sharing this with you; she blogged about creating a personal (or group) flag. I thought, seeing as most of you are writers of fantasy like me, you’d love knowing how to add that creative element to your books. You could even create a flag for your fantasy world and use it on your book cover.
On her blog, Ann-Margret digs deeper and gives you links to resource further. Cool, huh? Here’s part of her blog post:
Saturday, March 24, 2018
“This activity is perfect for a family, youth group, classroom or any themed club. It would make a great ice breaker for a big event, too.
I want you to imagine that you (or your group) are a country. What would your flag look like?
There are endless ways to design a flag because you have these options to consider:
Shape (most flags are rectangular but there are a few exceptions)
Creating the character races has got to be my favourite part of writing fantasy. I discovered early on in the writing process, that when we’re writing fantasy, our characters will depend largely on the type of world we envision them living in. Let’s say you have a fantasy world similar to Earth but with beings familiar to most readers of the fantasy genre. You’d probably include Elves, Dwarves, Humans, Halflings and one or two unique species of your own creation.
If you haven’t done so yet, now would be a good time to create a Pinterest board for your main characters. I find my Pinterest boards inspire me when I get writer’s block and help to keep me focused on the story I’m writing. Pinterest now allows you to add sections to your boards so you can have sections for—
Fantasy World (more on that later)
Other things you need to keep track of (you can check out my board for my soon-to-be-published Dwarf fantasy here).
We create the visual story as we read so your readers will envision the story better if they’ve already seen what these species look like. I tried to find pins of similar races to my characters to start with until my graphic designer created amazing images for my book, The Fellowship Of The King.
If you introduce a new species remember to include a detailed description of the basic appearance of your character. Fantasy readers have good imaginations, but give them a little help by describing the character’s height, hair, skin, eyes, mouth, ears, gait, clothing and such.
You could run your description by a friend and ask them to draw what you described. Does it look like you envision your character to look like? What other descriptives could you add to create a clearer picture in your reader’s mind? You can even add a link to your Pinterest board so they can actually see the characters for themselves. Remember to add your own artwork if you decide to go that route. The board could also help to pre-sell your new novel as you write!
Your Fantasy Character’s Evolution
How will your races survive in the climate you’ll create for your world?
Do they need to live underground because their skin burns easily and their world has two suns? What other attributes do they have because of this?
Will they live in trees because the world has flooded from a melting ice age? How does that affect their appearance?
Have they evolved from the original species because of some catastrophe and now look completely different?
Perhaps a Dwarf race is now hairless because a specific ingredient has been lost from their diet.
Changing a few basic features will make your characters unique but you’ll need to know why they look different from LOTR races which readers will naturally gravitate towards while they read a fantasy story. I’ll talk more about backstories later, so for now, focus on who they are and their general appearance.
You’ll need to be careful of copyright when including a race which someone else has created. It’s safer to begin writing fantasy with races which are commonly known such as the ones I’ve mentioned, or connect with a writing coach to help you with that. Any race from folklore is a pretty safe bet too.
If you decide to create a new race, chances are your creations will end up on the internet somewhere and others will use them. Are you ok with that? If not, you’ll need to copyright them.
Be sure to add a watermark to any original pictures and always link them to your website. Readers like to know the author behind the story and the artist behind the artwork.
Have fun creating your very own characters! No one else can create your characters like you can. These are your people and creatures. How amazing is that?
Til next time, know you are loved by the One who bestowed upon you His divine imagination and created you in His image.
“Do you ever dream of being more than you are? Being a super-hero who can do marvellous feats for others and for God? Someone who can vanquish evil by a spoken word? Well- You Are! …We are all part of something bigger than ourselves; a supernatural world which exists parallel to ours and which few of us see but which interacts with ours in a constant battle for Mankind.”
This is the introduction to my new book —
‘The Fellowship of The King – A Christian Geek’s Guide to Kingdom Purpose‘
Click the book to find out more.
Find Your Christian Life Purpose
What on earth does that mean? That’s a leading question because not all of the book is about this earthly realm. Half of it is about youin a differentrealm! The first part of the book is discovering how God uniquely designed you before you were born, to be an ambassador (a representative) for His Kingdom. How He gave you specific natural abilities, a specific personality, and ultimately Spiritual Gifts chosen for you to carry out the assignments He has for you on earth—should you chose to accept them.
Find Your Fantasy Alter-Ego
The second part of the book is a fun spin about who you might be in a fantasy realm, your uniqueness translating into a world of fiction and what your missions would be there for the king. It takes you through discovering your race, your choice of weapons, your class (occupation), creating a shield, and your code for the kingdom. Who do think you would be and what mission would you accept for the king?
The book’s a prelude to my upcoming Speculative Fiction novels set in a fantasy realm but written from a Christian perspective. More about those in the coming weeks.
I wrote this book with my son, Benjamin T. Collier, also a published author, who writes amazing novels of fantasy and science fiction (mum’s bragging rights). We had a lot of fun writing this together and putting the different aspects of humankind and fantasy characteristics together to explore the seen universe and the unseen realms of fantasy. He’s the one who wrote most of the second part of the book, and a good friend of ours, Kirstie Shanks, designed the cover and the artwork. It’s a blessing to be able to work with such talented people who are dear to me and follow after God.
If you’re not inclined to geekdom yourself hopefully you’ll still enjoy the reality half of the book and discover what God has for you in His divine wisdom. It also makes a great gift for a geeky friend. The ensuing conversations could be quite hilarious! You may find you have more in common than you think.
Til next time, know you are loved by the One who created you in His image—and remember:
“Biblical [Christian] Speculative Fiction is speculative fiction which uses Christian themes and incorporates the Christian worldview…” — Wikipedia.
In many of the modern Christian fiction novels, the characters are mainly Christian and act on guidance from God with no overt or miraculous divine intervention. There is almost always a non-Christian character who eventually becomes ‘born again’ and the emphasis is biblical and doctrinal, as in Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins’Left Behind series. It differs greatly from speculations on the Bible and Christianity found in fictional work such as Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code.
An example of a story which portrays a biblical and doctrinal emphasis but also features miraculous intervention would be Frank Peretti’s This Present Darkness which features demons, angels, and spiritual warfare.
So, in a nutshell, Christian Speculative Fiction is any fiction genre which gives a Christian worldview and can incorporate fantasy, science-fiction, dystopia, and other genres which invite us to connect with our Christian beliefs ‘outside the box’.
In the last few years, new venues have opened for the Christian Speculative Fiction genre. More recently, Enclave Publishing (formerly Marcher Lord Press) and LoreHaven have created a platform for writers of Christian Speculative Fiction.
Til next time, know you are loved by the One who created you in His image, which includes that magnificent imagination of yours.