Okay! We are heading out of the borderlands toward the king’s city of Avaras.
Ryo thinks it’s hot and is resigned to allowing people to work cantrips to help him cope. He’s shortly going to (a) have more trouble with the heat, and (b) encounter a more powerful magician, someone who can use real incantations, including something pretty powerful.
We didn’t meet Aras’ family in the borderlands after all. I moved them back to Gaur because there was enough stuff cluttering up the borderlands part, but not enough to do on the way to Avaras. We’re going to visit Gaur for sure and probably the Peacock Desert. Stuff can happen in those two places — I have vague ideas — and then I may write something like, “fourteen days later, we arrived in Avaras.” I mean, not quite that abrupt. But close-ish.
You realize I’ve referred to the grand architecture of the Lau several times in various books. I am going to have to describe that architecture shortly. I may seek inspiration from reading bits from other authors’ work. Who does really good grand architecture? I can think of two authors offhand:
(a) Martha Wells, in practically everything she writes. Huge ruins everywhere! Also, remember that city built on a turntable? No explanation, as I recall. Just a city slowly rotating on a giant turntable in the mountains. That’s in The Cloud Roads. But there’s plenty of grand architecture in her other books as well.
(b) Victoria Goddard, in The Hands of the Emperor. The Emperor’s palace is exceedingly grand.
Does anybody else spring to mind for any of you?
You know what, I should also look at images of real-world actual no-kidding grand architecture. Anybody have suggestions for must-see examples?
Anyway, I have only vague ideas about what’s going to happen before we get to Avaras. That will probably slow me down a bit. I have extremely clear scenes in my head for what happens IN Avaras, so that should be both fun and fast. I don’t intend to jump forward and write those scenes next and let the journey wait, but you know, that is not actually impossible, so we’ll see.
Then we’ll cross into the country of fire, the country of sand, the land of two Suns. We will have a good reason for doing that, but after we are well into the country of sand — too far to easily turn back — things will get much more fraught in a hurry.]
I just passed 120,000 words, by the way. A normal-sized book would be finished. But to be fair, if I were aiming to write a book that would be about 120,000 words in the final draft, I would fully expect the first draft to go to at least 150,000 words. Plus I always knew Tasmakat was going to go long no matter what. Even if I’d shown nothing of the journey back across the winter country, it would still have gone long. I therefore decline to worry about length, especially length of the first draft.