Pages of Awesome

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Guardian's Tree: Finished!

Those of you who have been watching the sidebar of my blog may have noticed that under my list of projects is a novella entitled The Guardian's Tree. I was struck with the idea a few weeks ago and it was one of those ideas that when you get just have to write them.

I grabbed the first writable surface and scribbled down the image that came to my mind: an old man guarding a tree. I'm no artist, and so the original sketch looked like the photo above.

Pretty detailed huh? lol But that was the image that hit me. I was thinking over something someone had said to me earlier, either my preacher or Creative Writing teacher...not sure which one. But they had mentioned the band U2's album Joshua Tree.

I've been in this thing recently where I think up ideas based off of song titles and lyrics and so when I was thinking of Joshua Tree I was buried by an idea.

What if I wrote a story literally about Joshua's Tree?

I took the title and made it an allegory.

And then it all struck me. I literally think the basic plot was inspired. It all came at once.

I envisioned a Tree guarded by one man and his double-edged sword. And then I pictured five shining stones circling about the Tree in the air. [see above for a similar image] And then came this image:

I think you can click to see the image larger. The camera wasn't taking the pics right anyhow.

What that is, is a large dead tree. People are chained to its roots, and bat-creatures with whips are tormenting them, and one man is trying to escape.

Those two images hit me like a freight train and I just had to write them. These stick figures were drawn on my church bulletin LOL. I literally ran out of the sanctuary while we were singing to get a pen. Then I jotted down the images and a brief explanation.

I had heard that Flaming Pen Press was going to be opening for novellas soon, or it was at least rumored, and I got really excited. This idea was definitely a novella/novelette idea. Too long to be a short story, too short to be a novel.

And then, of course, the company's owner Scott Appleton came and spoke at my school. And all that kind of awesomeness.

So not only did the idea seem inspired, it appeared destined to be published as well [Please note it's not yet been contracted. But FPP has asked me to submit].

So I threw my novel aside and got to work on the novella. And now, a week or so later, I have finished it. All 13,000-ish words.

So what is it about? I know, hope...beg....plead, some of you are asking that now :) Glad you asked (or at least read the question)! Here is my teaser written in about two seconds:

In the dark world of Hethra there are two trees. One tree is living, the other is dead. The living tree is tucked away in darkness, guarded by the only man who knows it. The dead tree is enormous and all of humanity is chained to its roots, tortured day in and day out by evil bat-like Damans. The living tree is the only light this world has and it is the only hope humanity has for deliverance. And so the Damans hunt it. And so the man, bearing a double-edged sword, protects it. When a captive escapes into his chamber the man is faced with task of freeing the captives. He must.

A chamber of darkness. A double-edged sword. Damans. And two opposing Trees.

This is the tale of the Guardian’s Tree.

If any of you are interested you can read the opening scene here.

Let me know what you think of the idea and the scene!

To the end,


Seth said...

Awesome job man! This thing is going to be a hit, no doubt. But, just got to let you know one thing... You HAVE to post when it's ready for pre-order lol. Anyway, looking forward to seeing it published man.


Brenna Dixon said...

Bravo, Nathan. Bravo. =D
It sounds totally awesome. Good job. :)

Israle Surrnak said...

Wow, this is more than publishable. It is like, how do I put it in comparison? Like J.R.R. Tolkein quality (I am talking about the opening scene) I am amazed at how you make it so awesome!!!

Barie-ah Hue-en-la said...

Oh my gosh Keeneye! Your stick people are adorable!!! lol. Now I understand why you thought my watercolor was so impressive. :P
Mighty brave of you to post those pictures, though.
Bravo on your novella!! I can hardly wait for it to be published so I can finish reading it!

Anonymous said...

dude... mind blowing opening. i can't wait to get my hands on the rest of it.

Anonymous said...

above comment by Pyrosian Heir, slip of the fingers

Storyteller said...

Ah! You finish at long last! Congratulations, Keeneye!!! I am so excited for you! May God light your path as your journey begins.

Anonymous said...

Huzzah, Keeneye! :) Can't wait to read it. Please keep us updated!

Jessica said...

Love this post Nathan. Love your drawings they are great! Yes I mean great they capture the thoughts of the moment and it makes the rest of us feel better when our art looks... sadly similar.

It is wonderful that you get inspirational from your pastors messages...that is the reason I became a pastor gave a message "Will you be a ready writer?" and I have been scribbling ever since.

Love the last line in your novella it gave me chills....looking forward to the final production

Celebrilomiel said...

Oooh, wow, Nathan! It sounds awesome.
And the excerpt - whoa. I can't wait to read the whole thing!

Nathan R. Petrie said...

Seth, I certainly hope it gets published. And then a hit would be AMAZING :) LOL I'll be sure to keep you posted.

Israle, that means a lot! Thanks man!

Barie, I'm an aspiring artist :) LOL JK

Heir, mind blowing? Wow. Thanks man!

Jessica, I've gotten better ideas from pastors :P U2 isn't the most godly of topics haha
Thanks. I thought the last line was a killer too :)

Thanks to all for reading and commenting! Means a lot! I'll keep you posted!

Cloe said...

That was so great, Nathan! I love it! Can't wait to read the whole thing.

Scott Appleton said...

So... we're both catching up to Jacob now! LOL I tried his method of looking through people's blogs and now I have 50 followers. LOL I can't believe it works! (-:

Nathan R. Petrie said...

Scott, I noticed! Great job! I still have yet to try Jacob's method LOL So I claim a one up on ya ;)
I'll have Offspring finished this week just FYI. And Jacob starts the TGT crit on the 1st hopefully haha

BlueBengal said...

That's definitely an epic opening! Very visual as always! :D I commend you for jotting down those ideas like that! I do that too quite often when planning ideas for illustrations. Thumbnails are very useful! I'll admit, you're not the only one sketching down ideas on church bulletins. :D

Nathan R. Petrie said...

@BlueBengal, thanks man! I think it just might be the best scene I've ever written :o lol Glad you enjoyed it :D
I was making a sketch of a weird creature the other day in church as well. This older guy kept staring at my shoulder. I assured him, I was not drawing the devil.

Three Cheers for bulletin vandalizing! lol

"Stand tall now and proclaim what you have seen, speak in whispered roars..."