Author's Notes: The Emperor's Dream Chapter Five

Hello and welcome to my author’s notes for chapter five of The Emperor’s Dream! These shorter notes are my reactions to the chapters that I have posted, as well as some fun facts about the writing process. So if you like peeking behind the curtain, or if it’s helpful to hear how another writer looks critically at their writing, read on! If that’s not your cup of tea, don’t sweat this one. See you next week with chapter five.

If you haven’t read chapter five yet, you can read it here.

If you just saw “The Emperor’s Dream” and you had no idea what I was talking about, no worries! It’s my ongoing epic fantasy novella that I’m sharing a chapter at a time here on my website. You can read chapter one here. These are first drafts only, so the final published version might change a little or a lot, but hopefully you either enjoy or learn something from seeing the process.

Now on with this week’s author’s notes!

  • This is actually almost a second draft of this chapter. At first, it came in at about a thousand words, and it was just Wanyi trying to figure things out before Nensin walks in. I knew I wanted to flesh it out a bit, so I added him picking up his Lan Banti wand again and knocking the rust off.
    • I also needed to do it for… let’s say… reasons.
  • That said, it was fun getting into some of the mechanics of Lan Banti. A new magic system to explore! Hopefully you enjoyed it as well. I’m a tad concerned it’s a little too technical here, so let me know what you think!
    • Additionally, I’m not sure how I feel about the names of the forces that Lan Banti uses. “The force of stars” is a bit of a mouthful and I sure as heck am not going to write “star force.” So that could potentially use some tweaking. Naming things is the hardest part of all this anyway.
  • My wife told me (very kindly, mind you) that Wanyi comes across as a little whiny in this chapter. I see where she’s coming from. I’d rather he came across as frustrated or annoyed, though, so that’ll need some tightening up. Chief Wanyi of the Owl Clan does not whine. It would be dishonorable.
    • But he is allowed a certain amount of leeway when he’s talking to his mom. Who doesn’t revert a little bit when your parent barges into your room and tells you to go do your chores?
  • I didn’t have much of a plan for Nensin when I went into this chapter. This is the first time she’s made it onto the page, and I’m pleased with how her voice and personality turned out. I don’t know why this is, but sometimes it seems easier to let the side characters come to life more than the main character. Maybe it’s just because you get Wanyi’s perspective on the other people. He doesn’t really think about what he himself is like.
  • All in all, it’s a decently quiet chapter, which part of me worries about. But then I remember that books I love have lots of chapters like this, and while they can at times be boring, they often help flesh out the world and the characters a lot more than just having a bunch of fight scenes back to back.

I think that’s all for this week, friend! What questions do you have? I’d also love to hear your feedback. Let me know your thoughts!

And again, if you haven’t read chapter five yet, you can do so here. That’ll make this whole post make a lot more sense.

If you’d like to support the work I’m doing here, you can buy me a coffee here. Or, if you’d like to become a monthly supporter, you can do so by becoming a paid subscriber on my website. Whatever floats your boat. I’m grateful either way. See you soon!

Until next time!