Tag Archives: Fiona

After Midnight – Early Scene

“That’s what happens when you don’t think about one wish, but just wave your wand over everything,” Fiona said, with a smirk. “What are you going to do about it, since you now know how powerful you are, and you’ve learned that no one else can undo your hasty and ill-formed magic?”

Fiona stood there with her arms folded, tapping a black wand against her shoulder. She didn’t usually handle her wand unless she was casting a spell. She never just played with it like that. The crockery on her shelves seemed uneasy too, though they often vibrated or rattled. Today they seemed to shrink back as far from the edges of the shelves as they could get, huddling together, backs to the wall.

Maven swallowed. She really didn’t want to get the amphibian perspective, even though she had just doomed a number of people–dozens–to that fate this morning and was not sure how to change them back. “I don’t know what to do. I really didn’t mean to transform so many of them this morning, but they were going to be crushed in the crowd. They wouldn’t listen to me.”

“That was the first smart thing you have done since you came here.”  Fiona leaned back on her desk, her wand pointing at the floor, the tip of it inscribing small circles that sparkled for an instant before fading. “Now they remember why they don’t come running to magic to solve their problems. Magic makes things worse, unless carefully and sparing applied.”

“What have you seen in your crystal ball?” Maven hoped Fiona would go and look, that she would stop playing with the wand that seemed more and more ominous every moment.

“I haven’t looked,” Fiona said. “I’ve been listening to you and your story, and this ridiculous situation, which is now all yours. It’s up to you to sort it out.” She crossed her arms, with the tip of the wand still moving, as if it had a will of its own. “What are you going to do about it?”

Maven listened for any suggestion from Bump of Direction, but got no sense of even having intuition, much less anything helpful, except to get out of Fiona’s office and see if she could think more clearly away from Fiona and her wand.

“I’m going back out there and muddle through.”  Without waiting for any sort of instruction or orders, since it appeared there would be none, she took out her wand, swizzled it and poofed back to the grounds of the Palace.

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Planning to be Evil Today

I’m working on the WIP today, focusing on my antagonist character Fiona Silverthorne, Fairy Godmother Superior. I have been told that her emotional content is lacking, and that it’s not clear why she decides to do some of the things she does to the protagonist, Maven.  I want to dissociate her from Shrek’s Fairy Godmother with her polluting industry and Oompa-Loompa slavery of her potion-making minions, yet the same sort of manipulation seems to come with the job–power corrupts.

So, today I will crawl into her head, perhaps riff-writing, as suggested by Elizabeth Lyon in Manuscript Makeover.  A truth about antagonists and villians is that (unlike in the cartoons), they think they are the heroes.  They feel justified in taking the actions they take for the higher good, even if it’s just good for themselves.

I intended the story to be about a struggle of opposition and perspective, rather than good and evil, but I chose the wrong genre for that. Fantasy is always about good and evil, usually clearly delineated and often over-simplified.  The Great Sauron does not even have a cat, like Dr. Claw, to soften his all-destructive evil. After all, what does he plan to do to Middle Earth after he conquers it? Lay it to waste.

I did not write Fiona to be evil, only authoritarian,  rule-bound and traditionalist, where Maven has issues with authority in general and with traditional fairy tale patterns in particular.  Hence parody.

Originally, I saw Fiona  as similar to the chief of police in detective TV, where the wise-cracking detective is always in hot water, but never in serious trouble except from the bad guys–Lethal Weapon in gossamer– although I usually think of Maven more like Peter Falk than Mel Gibson.  Fiona would have told me that wouldn’t work.

Still, to make the story work, Fiona must be as well developed as Maven, and that’s the task for today, to begin to  locate and revise the scenes written from her point of view,  to show her thought process, which Maven does not know, of course, and to justify her actions, at least from her point of view.  Those around Fiona see her as calculating and emotionally distant, but there has to be a heart  in her  somewhere for her to have the passionate rages that strike fear into most of Faery when she is around.

“But Evil’s still Evil,” according to Don Henley, so today I am studying Evil. Wish me luck.

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