Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Thursday, October 18, 2007
How does it really work? Can a child --theoretically, of course-- inherit every trait from its paranormal parent? Admittedly, in any world-building, a story can be created to defy our current understanding of biology. Anything can go, and does. But if we were to keep to the rules of today, what does "Breed" mean?
Breed is certainly an important element in raising livestock. The Department of Animal Science at Oklahoma State tries to define breed in their article, "What is Breed?": "Animals that, through selection and breeding, have come to resemble one another and pass those traits uniformly to their offspring." The article continues to explore the problems in defining breed, which is in large part, opinion of the breeders.
For a male vamp to pass only vamp DNA and none of the human mother, then this could be termed "true-breeding." In the real world, this is closer to what happens within the plant kingdom. Picture a self-pollinating plant which will produce a plant with all the same characteristics. In this case, though, the vamp would be contributing all of the DNA. Nothing from the mother.
What does all of this mean? You can create a hybrid of your ordinary/paranormal couple, combining dominant and recessive genes, or you could assume your paranormal side of the equation always passes dominant genes. Thus, one vampire parent will always produce a vampire offspring. Vamps breeding true does actually have some real world biological basis. And who couldn't believe an alpha-type male would be dominant, even on the genetic level?
Now I can think about what that means to my own world building.
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Monday, October 15, 2007
I have a short story with werewolves who are sensitive to the scent of petroleum. I have Phoenix who are worried over the gluttonous use of energy in their futuristic world. I have a faerie goblin who is angered over damage to his river and forest. There's more, but the point is that these issues are deeply important to me, and I was completely unaware that everything I'm writing has these elements in them.
Why should I be surprised? Forget my own personal views, look at the genres I'm drawn toward. SciFi is a perfect fit for environmentalism. Many of the major themes in these works come back to the damage that men can make on their world. Paranormal heroes in Paranormal Romance also tend to be friendly to the environment, if not completely tied to it. A common theme is even a fear of extinction of species.
I know that the environment is one of the most important political issues for me, but I have to wonder if the readers of SciFi, Fantasy, and Paranormal realize they are reading thinly veiled stories promoting conservation, preservation of wilderness, species protection, etc.
I'm doing my part. Recycling, teaching my kids about the environment, and writing from my conscience. I'm also participating in Blog Action Day, which is a day for bloggers to unite. Topic is the environment.
Friday, October 12, 2007
Another popular writing challenge is National Novel Writing Month. But, I've decided to sweat with Sven instead. Good luck to anyone diving into either of these challenges. The water's deep.
Tuesday, October 9, 2007
Everyone gets something different from these events. In Atlanta, the highlight for me was the pitch workshop I attended. The workshop was set up with about ten per table, with a published author at each to run the workshop. I was at Kelley St. John's table. Lots of really good information. She runs a pitch workshop that must be excellent, based on how things went at this event. If you have the opportunity to take her class, you should.
The best part of the NJ conference was meeting many of the members of my crit group. Until this weekend, I knew most of them primarily through email. It was great.