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The Fandoran Prophesy
The elves awoke in times of darkness. The demon, Shar, possessed pure hearts.
A kingdom born of flawless spirit was cast to shadow and torn apart.
Now demons creep in dead of night when shadow covers all.
The elves shall be the spark that leads the world to freedom’s fall.
This is an excerpt of the Fandoran Prophecy. It was a simple poem that I wrote on a whim one summer. I had an idea, and I ran with it. From those four simple lines, I crafted an entire world.
This is an adventure that started almost 20 years ago. A terrifying number when I say it out loud. That’s how long this story has been floating around in my head, and in that time it’s taken on many forms. It started as a series of short stories, and not long after, I set my sights on a series of novels. Novels became movies, and movies became an animated series. Then I added spin-offs, tie-ins, and video games.
For all that planning, I only ever published one thing. One thing that I wasn’t really happy with. At the time, I thought it would be like a kick in the pants. It was good enough, and seeing my story listed on Amazon would build momentum.
Plot twist: writing is hard, and when you see a world as clearly as I see this one, it’s really easy to look at what you write and think: “That’s not good enough.” When you hear that enough times, it’s easy to pack it up and walk away.
I think the root of the problem is that the world grew too big too quickly. The earlier versions of the map had a lot of empty space, and empty space needs to be filled. But all those extra landmarks need stories, those stories need characters, and those characters need histories.
Sometimes, I’d look at the scale of the project, and just sort of freeze. There was so much stuff that I never knew where to begin. How much of this needs to be on the page now? Can I use this to write prequels, or other concurrent side-stories? How the hell did Tolkien do this without losing his damn mind?! Seriously. The guy invented entire languages. Thanks for setting the bar so low, dude. Really appreciate it.
I’ve been stuck in the same cycle for a long time. I’d burn hot for a few weeks and hammer out a bunch of details, and then wake up one day and find that all the momentum was gone. It was too much to handle, and nothing was up to the standard that I had set for myself, so I’d just stop.
The thing is, I can never stay away from this one. I’ve never given up. Not really. I always circle back eventually, and the world just keeps growing in bits and pieces while I wait for it to be ready. But what does “ready” look like?
I know two things. First: The world needs to be smaller. More manageable. I need to narrow the focus, and bring everything a little closer together—both physically and chronologically. The less empty space I have, the less space I need to fill.
Second: Every great fantasy story starts with a map. This is just a sketch, but I have to start somewhere.
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