Why the Making of the Mark

at the port  This picture represents the story very well. The port below pictures Norbert’s world-colorless, dull, depressing. Clean, organized, but not much else of freedom or life in it. But the night sky above is the rebellion shining with hope, with the golden orb of light in the picture as the lost prince and princess that should come back, according to the villagers

Picture Source


Okay, so now you’re wondering: Why are you publishing this now when only the first four chapters have been published?

My answer: Today seemed like a good day to do this.

Time I tell how the story came on to my mind. And it’s very interesting (I’ll even let you know how I got Goswin’s name). And how certain details came in the making.

A few months ago, May, I think, I was in class, done with the Math State Test. So were everybody else around me. In fact, we were done with math entirely.

You see, our schedule seemed rigged against us in a way. Like after four periods of the Math State Test, (as usual as it can be, since this year, New York is testing how we do without a time limit) the class will endure two periods of more math in math class. Which, I don’t have to tell you, is overkill.

But our math teacher, whom I’ll kindly leave him to remain anonymous (I hope this is good grammar in this sentence, and why that problem would come to me, no clue), knows our misery, and decided to let us watch movies. And during one of the three-day testing agony, we chose to watch the 2001 movie, Shrek.

My opinion about it: Okay? Maybe.

The Shrek is completely disgusting sometimes-like who would think otherwise-but he’s a great character, in my way. He doesn’t expect people to like him, and he is fine with his lifestyle and his home. So when every fairytale creature-from fairies to Pinocchio-retreated to his home to be protected-or were they exiled there? It’s been a long time since I last watched it-Shrek decided to go to the king to discuss with him matters on dumping strangers upon his less-than-nice-looking-but-at-least-that’s-how-he-likes-it property.

I wonder if this gives you a text-to-world connection, like how my teachers at my elementary school taught me. When this problem gives you a connection on what’s happening in our world today? Though let’s not talk about that right now.

The king (I so forgot his name) was a cruel king, and very perfectionist to a straight fault. Also, he’s short, but I guess his cruelty was what made up for it. When he and Shrek meet, the king makes him rescue a princess he wants to marry, in order for him to be convinced to free Shrek’s home of these magical exiles.

Let me speed things up, so we can get to the how-my-story-got-formed part, since I found myself sliding off topic.

Shrek saved princess from tower, and the two-along with Shrek’s donkey friend-hike back to the king for their promises to come through.

One day, the princess sang in the woods, just like any Disney princess would, and sang to a bird, who sang back. Then she sang with so much force that the bird exploded-don’t worry, nothing ugly to see-leaving eggs behind for the characters to eat.

Too soon, the period ended, but something about that scene clicked into my mind.

Then, I had a scene in my head, where a girl was singing in the woods, and listening to what she thought was a bird’s chirp, and then a guy showed himself from hiding behind a tree trunk, whistling back to her with a flirtatious look on his face.

As I walked with my class to the auditorium, the scene grew and developed into a story, and a story it was by the time I entered.

I had the earliest version in my head when I entered. Which I’ll tell you quickly, and as concise as possible.

A girl runs away from a burning house from the King’s Men, and her mother tells her to “run and the white bird will find you”, and she does, into the dreaded Night Woods.

A spring night, the girl gets tired from all her running and decided to sleep under the shade of a tree.

From far away, a hunter was climbing a tree, and saw his friend, just in snowy owl form, who tells him that a strange girl was in the woods, and they soar-with the lithe hunter jumping from tree to tree, following his now winged friend-to the tree where she sleeps under.

His friend chats endlessly about topics they may be interested in, but the hunter doesn’t listen as he stares at the girl, wondering who she is, and how beautiful she looked. After a few minutes, though, both the hunter and his friend-now in human form-leave the girl alone and disappear into the night.

The nest day, the singing-girl scene I mentioned earlier happens, and the girl meets the hunter and his friend and they bond together with happiness and jokes, and the girl tells them about her quest to find the white bird. Since none of the three likes the king so much, they confidently walk together towards the path where they see the brilliant yellow sun shining at their faces, as they go to overthrow the cruel king.

I guess by now you know who is the girl, the hunter, and the hunter’s best friend.

Answer: Swan, Goswin, and Rafael.

Now, you know the early version. And you can see that it’s lighter, more cheerful, more like Disney’s animated films in a way. For there are always some part(s) in the movies that we can lift our spirits seeing. I guess I should’ve just put the more cheerful version in my blog, rather make it depressing and like the trending sci-fi at every turn.

I love fantasies, and I loved the fairy tales where girls are princesses, or mermaids, or fairies that either save the day, or have them being saved by someone noble. Now, I’m in the dark teenage world of destructive governments and science fiction, where girls can violently kick butt.

There was nothing wrong with that kind. I actually enjoyed movies like Divergent, and the Hunger Games. Read voraciously the book called Legend. But as much as I love to see independent, rough women show who’s the one with more power, I feel we also need to see the sort-of delicate, beautiful women who still save the day, and stuff like that. Basically, the world and the fantasy genre has lost touch with each other.

Which to me, is kind of devastating, since some of the books, are a bit repetitive, with the same destructive, crazy modern government, and it’s citizens fight back, with a huge rebellion and courage, etc. etc. etc.

The only fantasy that’s left is the fairy tales in the children’s section in the library, the classics like Narnia and Lord of the Rings that are somewhere in the No-One-Reads-This section (There’s no such thing, but I’m just patronizing real life), and the Song of Ice and Fire series (aka Game of Thrones) that are in the YA section, where your demise and explicit scenes are at every turn.

Okay, I’m biased towards fantasy, but I think no one reads them anymore (at least the joyful, lighthearted ones), since some of the fantasies I’ve read in the YA section are dark, sad, cynical, sadistic a bit, sexy, and more sad and dark. Like gosh, as if I wasn’t in the midst of some happening when sometimes I have, like no real emotion whatsoever.

Where’s the fun? Where’s the light comedy?

What were we talking about again?

Right, the story.

So, since the characters are there, I had to give them names, like who wouldn’t. I wanted to make the names people can remember, like Luke Skywalker, Katniss Everdeen, Beatrice Prior, Noah (I’m kind of kidding at this point. But tell me if my humor isn’t funny).

When I was thinking about the girl’s name, somehow the name “Bella Swann” from the Twilight series. Somehow, the name “Swann” sounded pretty cool, for her. So “Swan” was her name. Along with “Petterson”, inspired from a character from my earlier attempts of stories.

Yes, I try to write stories. Have been since I was little. The problem was how to reach the ending, since my stories tend to be long, like a chapter book. And, how to keep my story from descending into “that’s just stinks” level-the level I don’t want to be in.

Anyway, finding a name for the hunter and his friend and the king’s, didn’t seem so far away to remember, since I completely remember well how I got them.

Let’s start on the hunter. So while looking for a name for him, I looked at a nice-looking teacher, his name is Mr. Oswald, and I thought of the name, “Oswin, his name is Oswin.” But I didn’t think it was right. Then, the word, “gosling” suddenly appeared in my mind…

Hell no! Are you crazy?!!! Do. Not. Think. That. I did NOT get that from Ryan Gosling! It’s the truth! Gosling is some kind of bird! I think!

Later, I heard it’s a baby goose. From my twin sister. BUT STILL!!!

Then, with “gosling” in my mind-and I remember the word “Godfather” came after that one, too. Strange is my train of thought-I’ve finally decided that the name shall be “Goswin”

Next, is the friend.

I had a crush on someone a long time ago, and I thought I saw someone a few times. A boy with really dark skin, with wavy black hair. I haven’t seen him in a while with him recently, which made me question if he was real or not. Whether a figment of my imagination or real, I gave him a name. Rafael. The name seemed interesting, so I decided, that his friend was called Rafael.

Finally, the king. After watching the movie, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone in my ELA class, including the part when a baby dragon hatched from an egg, and Hagrid named him Norbert, I thought Norbert was a cool name, for a cruel king. So Norbert it is.

I wish to tell you a whole lot more, but maybe I can, hoping from my rambling that you’re not the least bit bored. Cause, I hope the next would be interesting.

Can I tell you how I named the kingdoms?

Personally, I was bit inspired from the theme song video of Game of Thrones-the TV series. If you hate the show, at least like the song-it’s a knockout.

So I decided it should in an imaginary continent, called Savokriston, and two mighty countries, named inspired from the animals on their royal family’s sigils. Like the Stark’s sigil is a direwolf, and the Lannisters-a golden lion.

Pholuxon is the first, after their brilliant sigil of a phoenix, a symbol of power and hope for many people in history. That was easy.

Sowlengard was a little harder. I just couldn’t find a name for their country, whose sigil is a white snowy owl. The owl was inspired from a Disney movie I watched with my little sister, Tinkerbell, and the Secret of the Wings where a snowy owl was featured there. Later, I found out through research, that they are very protective of their homes, which make it even better a symbol of not only power, but defense.

So while struggling to find a name, I then thought of the wicked kingdom Isengard from the trilogy-turned-movies Lord of the Rings, and thought Why not? Inspired from the name, I finally got Sowlengard as the name of a country.

Therefore, I got a full cast, and their settings.

That’s a wrap. Whoo! Let’s see…I wrote, more than 2,ooo words of info! Gosh, that’s a lot of words, though I have typed posts with more words and books with tons of more. Hope you enjoyed this post that was written in a few hours!!