Wednesday, March 19, 2008

I has a trillojee. :)

I don't know if LOLCats actually have a picture for this. Shame.

I think I might just have a trilogy on my hands now. The third one ambushed me this morning.

What happened? Well, I was bewailing my lack of a decent Roman villain in either the Flavian or Antonine novels. Suffice to say, I'm writing novels in which the main storylines concern the Caledonians fighting Roman imperialism and all the nasties that implies. And all the properly villainous characters are... Caledonians. Not the usual situation, I grant you.

Agricola pretty much refused to be a baddie (at least until the seventh season), and since Emperor Domitian never actually appears, he doesn't really count. In other words, the Roman "villain" in The Ancestor Crown is the concept of imperialism, rather than an actual person. It's a different case to that of the Severan invasion, where we have Septimius Severus ordering an actual, recorded policy of genocide. Which would make Severus, and those two sons of his, rather suitable villains. The situation for the Caledonians would be more dire than that of the Flavian invasion. Instead of "We're all going to be enslaved!" it'd be, "We're all going to be slaughtered!" Good novel material there, I thought.

But I left it alone, and went back to mulling over my current two books; in particular, about how to tie up the Antonine novel. Now, if my MC Eilwen, a royal blood-carrier of the Taexali, does go on to marry Centurion Firmus, any children of theirs would theoretically have a claim on the throne of the Taexali through her. The scenario came to me then: a descendant of theirs (an older child or a grandchild) comes to Caledonia at the time of the Severan invasions, makes a successful bid for their birthright and ends up as a leader against Severus. Naturally, this character would be torn between their Caledonian and Roman blood, and leave room for much internal conflict. ;)

It's the bare bones of a story, right there. A continuation of both the stories of Roman-Caledonian warfare, and the family lines established in the first two books.

Then, in a moment of pure inspiration (er...), accompanied by comedy angelic singing, it hit me: what about the historical figure Argentocoxus? Like Calgacus, all we have of him is his name (and the fact that his wife had a chat with Empress Julia Domna about their sex lives), so this is the novelist's ideal opportunity! Maybe this hypothetical descendant of Eilwen and Firmus' goes on to become a Caledonian war-leader, and becomes known as Argentocoxus! Eureka! It all fits together.

And not only would it continue the overall plot, but also this tradition of funny phallic-sounding names! Cocceius Firmus, Argentocoxus... you get the idea... Lol!

I love the writing process. The only problem is... oh dear God not another one please not another one!


Gabriele C. said...

I'm sure your plotbunnies meet with my plotbunnies and do what they can best, breed more plotbunnies.

I already have a trilogy spanning several generations (Varus battle and Germanicus' campaigns, Mons Graupius and the Chatti, the incursions after Trajan's death and Hadrian's visit in Britain), and it's giving me ideas to continue to - yes, the Severian invasion.

And there's that Cartimandua story that would fit right in as well.

Gabriele C. said...

visit to Britian - I haz English, I does. :)

Kirsten Campbell said...

Lol. I think you might be right about those plotbunnies.

At this rate, I'll probably have the Barbarian Conspiracy of 367 fitted in by the end of the week. A trilogy of four, heh.

Then there's that founding-of-Dál Riata subplot trying to get into the first book... bloody plotbunnies.

Really, I shouldn't complain. I'd be more annoyed if my plotbunnies were sterile.

Gabriele C. said...

Yep, and the additonal German setting would give me the crossing of the Rhine in 406.

That way, I could tie the whole mess in with the Visigoth novel and The Charioteer. :)

Crystal said...

My real question is concerning the
"comedy angelic singing" that inspired it all. Do tell yer secret songs please;)LOL!!!

Kirsten Campbell said...

Lol, it was just that the idea hit me so suddenly, and so clearly, it was practically accompanied by a beam of light and a choir of angels going, "Da-da-da..." in the background.

Oh no, I'm hearing voices now. Can't be good...

Sarah Cuthbertson said...

Isn't it just the most wonderful feeling when a story suggests itself like this and everything fits!

Re: phallic-sounding names - don't forget Titus Annius at Vindolanda. Yeeeew.

Crystal said...

ROFL!!!!! For a writer hearing the "voices" can be VERY good indeed!! LOL! Have a good evening!!!

Kirsten Campbell said...

Sarah - It's the best feeling, especially when it's as neatly tied in as this one. Often makes me wonder - though I know it's not the case - that I've caught a little whisper from the past!

Oh, dear... Titus Annius. Honestly, Bigus Dickus has nothing on these guys. They're actually real.

Crystal - Hearing voices would be fine if only they would just shut up for a while! :)

Crystal said...

Hey girlie, I changed my URL site name. Its

I noticed that Google engine hits on me WAY too much and just to protect my site I made it a little more difficult to do. Anyone can just type in my name and it pulls up. For people like the EX husband i'd rather not make it so easy. Just change it in your links section and it should change it. Hope your having a good day;o)

Jack Dixon said...

Hey, you. Nice post. Careful with those distant mystic melodies, lass. Might be the Picts coming to steal you away in the night...

Nice new blog, Crystal. Looks like Harley weather for you already. I'm jealous.

Kirsten Campbell said...

Crystal - Thanks for the heads-up!

Jack - Hi! Good to see you.

I don't think it's the Picts. Probably just the gnomes. They're very tuneful this time of year.

...I am sane. Honest.

Jack Dixon said...

Crystal, isn't it a compliment, or flattering or something, if the Google engine hits on you a lot?