Truth up front. I love the English language with all its inconsistencies. I especially like the subtle shades of meaning described by different words, and the roll of vowels and consonants to give an aural assist to a visual impression. I am hooked on alliteration.
Foreign words like Vatulele and Srivijaya catch my attention. The first is a tiny island where the great South Pacific meets the Coral Sea and the second is an empire that fizzled out in the early eighth century. Where history has gaps, I feel free to fill in. Bodacious, I know. But it is a lot of fun to imagine, “What if…?”
When it is cold and dark on my mountain, and the wind is whipping the 75′ oaks outside my snug loft, I can travel back in time. There are stories to be told. I can envision a canoe headed out for unknown destinations. Maybe a kaunitoni that sailed from mystical ancient islands and carried tribal gods. Archaeologists have excavated ruins from Melanesia to Samoa, finding pottery with the same dentate pattern they ascribe to the Lapita people. The historians do not tell us much about them except they were probably a common ancestor of several Polynesian cultures.
Sounds like a story to me. In my novella, “Rampart of the Phoenix,” an ancient tribe who respects the spirits of nature in sky and sea is decimated by a smallpox outbreak on the small island of Vatulele in 650 AD. The survivors question the potency of their traditional beliefs and turn to the leadership of shipwrecked sailors cast on their beach in a storm. The plot proves that proud oppression provokes punishment. (I told you I like alliteration.)
The characters are figments of my imagination. I indulged in hours of research of this magical island’s background, and I took pleasure in creating a world through which I can escort those seeking an adventure. Check out my article coming out on December 3, 2014: http://www.buddhapussink.blogspot.com