Sunday, October 15, 2006

My hero, with his weapon in his hand

Have I told you how much fun I have with researching my alien romances?
Possibly the high point of my week this week was a visit to a sword master's lair. My quest was to get inside the head of my next hero: Prince Djarrhett.

'Rhett is a swordsman, which seems rather anachronistic in a high tech, albeit feudal, world, so the Sword Master and I had a wide ranging chat lasting nearly two hours, which covered the real-life Sword Master's opinions of the fight scenes in the Bond movie Die Another Day, and The Phantom Menace. (He feels that the light sabres are cool, but is concerned about the balance of the hilt, given that light can't weigh much, which is why Darth Maul is his favorite!!) We also discussed the logistics of weapons aboard space ships. Swords come in various lengths, and the big ones --like rapiers-- could be rather antisocial.

I so love this analytical thinking!
You can bet that if an opportunity presents itself, a lot of Sword Master Todd's opinions will filter through into 'Rhett's point of view.

"Have you ever cut someone?" I asked, never hoping for an affirmative answer. Fencing is supposed to be safe, right?


"What does cutting someone feel like?"

I couldn't believe my luck! After all, if I'm going to write a swordfighting duel from the point of view of my hero, he is going to have to sink some portion of his weapon into someone else's flesh.

The answer presents some literary challenges, but I can handle that, secure in the knowledge that if any Sword Masters read my next book, they will not hurl it at a wall--or trash can-- because my hero feels unrealistic sensations.

I think I must have asked more than twenty questions. I will share one more:

"Is your image of yourself different when you have a sword in your hand?"

(Oh, I did ask what he'd fight in, if he did not have to worry about protection. Would you believe, Underarmor? )

"I feel younger, stronger and faster with a weapon in my hand."
I really liked that answer, because I can make use of a double entendre. Now, I have four books to read, including The Secret History of The Sword. I had no idea there was a secret history. I cannot wait to find out what it is!

Until next week.



  1. Anonymous8:07 PM EDT

    I SO need to find out (offline, if you like) what these books are you're reading. I, too, have a high-tech (read space-faring) but feudalistic society of non-humans who are anachronistic in their ways of dress and armament (some of it, anyway). Plus, there's just something romantically dashing about folks wearing swords. Sword at the left hip, blaster on the right. And perhaps a dagger for good measure.

  2. Hi, David,

    I've put up a Wish List on Amazon. I'm not sure whether or not the public can see it, and just because I created a Wish List does not mean I want anyone to buy it for me!

    I plan to see what my local library has.

    However, check out Amberger, Richard F Burton, Cohen, Aldo Nadi, and Westbrook, and look over the reviews.

    The best source of research, IMHO, is to find your local fencing school, because you might get your Master to custom choreograph a fight scene for you.

    In Detroit, it's Renaissance Fencing... chess at full tilt!

    Best wishes,