August 2020 Writing Challenge Week 2

August 2020 Writing Challenge Days 8 – 14

Hosted by @ryan.ewing.writing on Instagram 

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August 8th, 2020

What would be your MCs social media username?

Merrick, my YA Fantasy main character, probably would not have much use for social media until he got to the mages’ academy and gained some friends.  He would likely have his friends help him set it up, so he would just use his first name, which the orphanage director gave him, and the last name Merrick thought up and shares with his familiar (But that’s a spoiler!).

Cinderella would not have a public personal social media account, but she would run the social media accounts for her new business ventures, and then eventually the ones for her father’s trading company once she was able to inherit it. And even if she did have a personal account, she would forever forget to check the messages she got there, which would make the prince mad when he’s trying to DM her. The prince would either wind up just sending his messenger, a runner named Trouble, to find her or he would go find her himself.  The prince also would not have a personal social media account, just the one run by the PR people of the castle.

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August 9th, 2020

What are your MCs’ dream jobs?

My YA Fantasy main character always wanted to be a powerful mage when he grew up.  He went 15 years without being able to awaken his magic, while everyone around him considered him useless.  He wants to have magic to prove everyone wrong.  He wants to be a mage who is respected by all and is not looked down up on and scorned for his humble beginnings.

Cinderella wants to be the head of the trading company her father left her in his will. However, her stepmother has refused to let her inherit control over it due to Cinderella’s “young and impressionable age.”  Thus, the stepmother, who has no idea how to run a trading company, had run the company into the ground.  Cinderella wants to get it back up on it’s feet and expand it to be even greater than when her father was the head of the company.

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August 10th, 2020

Write a scene: Your MCs in high school or college

My YA Fantasy story includes a mage’s academy, which would be the equivalent of an escalator high school to college.

All around the walls of the academy lobby were little alcoves that had candles burning on either side of the entry.  Merrick peeked his head in one to discover an adult human-sized statue of the goddess of plants and weaving.  He glanced back over his shoulder to the main alter at the back of the lobby, which held a humongous statue of the fire god, scantily clad and showing off detailed muscles and it looked like the god could come to life at any second.  The goddess’s statue was the size of a grown woman, while the flame god’s statue was easily two stories tall.  There was definitely a bit of a bias.

“We’d better stay well hidden, then.”   Merrick was extremely cognizant of his own dark magic, which had the potential to make him the most hated existence within the academy.  Until they caught him, that is.

“Yep.  Stay Hidden and learn well so we can play in the shadows!” Nisha, his familiar who also used dark magic said from within his shadow.

Merrick continued to walk around the rest of the atrium, seeing all of the other deities, but he did not see one dedicated to the dark god.  Just as he was about to return to the benches, he glanced up and saw a second alter pedestal directly opposite to the flame god’s alter.  Instead of a statue, it held a huge mirror.  Merrick had rarely ever seen any mirrors in his small town, and to see one that was two stories tall was a shock.

In between the etchings of the frame, the edges of the mirror emulated the rays of the sun, spreading out from the mirror to fill up the archway that the alter rested in.  The statue of the flame god was reflected in it, posing, as if the god wanted to look at himself in the mirror rather than at his believers.

“That’s a bit weird,” Merrick thought just as the headmaster of the academy entered the lobby and called for the attention of those present.

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August 11th, 2020

How would your MCs react to being cut off on the road or freeway?

For Merrick, his reaction would depend on if it was before or after he awakened his magic and if there were other people around to witness his reaction.  If this happened before he is able to control his magic, there is very little he can do.  In fact, he’s had this situation happen when he runs into several of the bullies in his hometown.

When he is confronted by the sons of those who are influential in town, he is unable to fight back effectively because he knows the other boys’ families will make it very hard for the orphanage to get any more donations in the town, which will mean there won’t be enough funds to feed the children.  The orphanage director has already let Merrick know he might have to work for Merchant Larse, the illegal slave merchant, in order for funds to continue to flow into the orphanage’s coffers.  So in order to not draw more ire towards the orphanage and the other children, Merrick holds his anger in until the drunken bullies trip and start fighting against themselves.

However, once Merrick learns how to control his magic, he gains the ability to temporarily enter the shadow realm and leave the physical realm behind.  If he was cut off in traffic and thought his life was in danger, lets say from a carriage careening around a corner, he could slip into the shadows and let the carriage race by.  This type of escape can only be done if there are very few witnesses, however.  Because if someone else sees him slipping into the shadows, they will know he is able to wield dark magic and the temple will begin to hunt him down.

Cinderella would plot revenge.  She would first investigate who it was that cut her off or tried to run her over, and if they were intentional in this action, she would begin to scheme how to take revenge on them. Her actions would depend on what the other person held dear.  If they were a noble who values their reputation, she would begin to spread rumors that would ruin their reputation, arrange for them to be caught in a scandal, or dig up evidence of their wrongdoing.  If they were a someone who valued their business ventures above all else, she would begin moving behind the scenes with her network of informants and merchants to ruin their business interests, causing them to lose money and waste time in their endeavors, essentially allowing their rivals to succeed.

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August 12th, 2020

What would your MCs do during a natural disaster (tsunami/typhoon, flood, earthquake, tornado)?

Both of my main characters would do their best to make sure they and their loved ones were safe and secure first and foremost. 

During the event, Merrick might slip into the shadow realm to avoid the possibility of physical injury, despite what it may cost him in the long run. 

Cinderella doesn’t have any special skills that would allow her to avoid a natural disaster.  She would know all the hiding spots that were secure either in her house or on her estate, so she would be able to at least find a safe spot for herself. If she was in town, she would try to get to the trading district, where the merchants’ guild and her father’s company were headquartered. However, since there are no more servants left on the estate, she doesn’t have anyone else to worry about there (especially not her stepfamily who are so obnoxious).

 Then, after the event has passed, both of my main characters would each try their best to help others.  Not necessarily because it was their first inclination, but because their loved ones either have a passion for it or have the duty to take care of others due to their social positions.

Merrick would make sure that his friends and mentor were safe.  One of those friends is a healer’s apprentice, which means that as soon as the disaster was mostly concluded, the healer would be out trying to rescue others and heal wounds.  Another one of his friends is the daughter of a duke.  She has the responsibility and the training to take charge and allocate resources in times of need.  Between these two friends, Merrick would be put to work immediately, either helping to rescue people or sending supplies to take care of the people once they have been rescued.

Cinderella, likewise, would first make sure that the people she cared for (those loyal to her father and the prince) were safe.  Then she would, as the heir of the trading company, make sure that she sent out supplies and resources to those who need it. After all, a trading company can always use a good reputation boost; plus, it makes sense to take care of her customers so they can continue to spend money at her trading company.

August 13th, 2020

Your MCs have the chance to alter the past-fiction or real world. What would they do?

Both of my main characters, from the Cinderella retelling and my YA fantasy, would choose to change the past of their fictional worlds. 

My YA fantasy MC would change the past so that he could use magic as a child.  As an orphan without magic, Merrick has been told that if he had magic, his parents wouldn’t have “abandoned” him to the care of the orphanage.  Growing up without being able to awaken his magic, he has constantly wondered if his parents abandoned him because of his lack of magic.

Therefore, Merrick would change the past of his world so that he could grow up in the care of his parents, knowing that someone loved him and thought he was worthwhile. 

As for Cinderella, she would also like to change the past of her fictional world.  Specifically, she would firstly like to change her mother’s death.  That way her father would never have the opportunity to be “available” when he met the woman who became her stepmother.  A less ideal change that she would like to make would be to make sure her father did not fall for her stepmother’s marriage ploy, or that her father would find evidence of the stepmother’s crimes and divorce her before she hired the assassin to do away with him.

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August 14th, 2020

What were your MCs favorite toys as children?

Merrick, the main character of my YA Fantasy, mostly made toys out of bits of nature and his environment.  He and the other orphans grew up drawing pictures on the ground with sticks, competing to see who could kick a rock farther, or skipping rocks along the riverbed.  He made slingshots and sharpened wooden javelins for hunting in the woods.  Merrick and the others would occasionally receive gifts as donations to the orphanage, but the usual gifts would be clothes, food, or dolls for the girls and wooden swords for the boys.  The orphanage director would sometimes let them stare at the market toys like tops, pinwheels, and decorated masks, but there was never enough money in the budget to get something for everyone, so no one wound up getting anything.

As for Cinderella, she grew up as her father’s trading company was flourishing, so she had plenty of luxurious toys.  She had dolls, stuffed animals, music boxes, etc.  But one of her favorite things to play with was her mother’s vanity desk.  It had so many small and secret compartments to open.  Her father always left little gifts for her mother to find, so Cinderella spent time looking for the small gifts when she spent time with her mother. Plus, her mother taught her how to put on her home-made cosmetics at the vanity.

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