Fueled by three cups of coffee, one monster energy drink and copious amounts of trail mix I am here and ready to get funky with this post! Let’s fucking do this!
For those of you that didn’t read my post yesterday, you should go do that…right now… seeing as this post is just a continuation of creature design. Yesterday I covered my method of fleshing out my own version of an already existing species and making it my own. I chose to do the Amanzile, which is my own version of the classic mermaid. Today I will tell you guys about one of my original species and how I went about creating them and their culture.
I really want to just jump right in because I am super excited to get started! Then again it could just be the caffeine…or the trail mix… probably the caffeine. Moving on!
I wanted a chance to explain my own made up species the Croendurians seeing as one of the main characters in the prelude story I will be posting here is from that race. I wanted to make a race of very human like creatures that had an almost Nordic feel to them, and were hearty and rough. These would be people that could live among the Draguns of my world and be fully capable of handling themselves in the rough living conditions in the mountains on the continent of Evrukin. I wanted them to be strong and kind of surly, in the way my moms side of my family is(they’re all heavy drinking Newfoundlanders).
Species Name: Croendur
Culture: Very hearty culture. Most work with dragons for a living. Very family oriented. These people have become a melting pot of cultures all thrown in together and very few are “pure bred” to this day.
Appearance: Appear human. Usually slightly tanned, fair haired and green or blue eyed. Freckles. Like tanned Irish. Thicker skin, stronger bones and slightly longer life expectancy than average humans. Have a closer genetic relationship to the Anaki(giants) then humans. It has actually been theorised that they are the result of human/Anaki cross-breeding but tests have yet to be done seeing as many humans tend to avoid the Croendurians due to their bad yet unwarranted reputation. Croendurians can also grow up to 6’11, while most stay around an average height of 6’2-6’6″ for men and 6’0″-6’4″ for women. Also have been known to have longer canines, like that of a wild dog, seeing as their diet mostly consists of rough and dried meats.
So this species appears more like a different race of human then a different species entirely but to the people of Cealusterra(the world they reside in) they stand out like a sore thumb. I came up with these guys by accident while I was planning for my Draguns. Originally my character Marche( of Croendurian birth) was just a dude who came from the mountains and his mom was a Dragun vet. However, the more I developed my Draguns the more I realised that I needed the people living among them to be stronger then humans, maybe even a bit rougher around the edges. I didn’t want them to be elf like in appearance though because I already had elves in my world and I didn’t need another elf like species running amuck. I already knew I was going to have giants in my world but I had already decided to call them the Anaki and have them come from my northern continent of Arkos, and I couldn’t have my Draguns living in such a cold climate. This meant I needed a humanoid species that had the sturdy build of a giant but closer to the size and appearance of a human. The more research I did into Draguns and giants and mythology the more I really ended up falling into Norse mythology and old Nordic cultures as well as a touch of the old Celtic cultures. For some reason I pictured these Dragun people to be very similar to an average sized Lord of the Rings meets Steampunk Dwarf. They’re habits and brash nature in the Hobbit book really appealed to me and i couldn’t help but think that if I could channel a bit of that as well in this race then I would be fucking golden as a midsummers day. Slowly but surely my race was coming together and starting to form itself.
The Croendurians would have thicker skin and bones to better equip them for a rough life in the mountains, many cliffs means more chances to hurt yourself in a fall. These people would also live off a diet of salted meats and raw root vegetables, and the occasional fish for a treat. This meant they were primarily carnivores, requiring them to have a stronger jaw and sharper teeth for tearing meat. Due to their Giant blood they do grow to be rather tall and that can often be a good indicator that you’re dealing with a Croendurian and not just a tanned human. Most of their differences from humans lies in their actual diet and their insides rather then their outer appearance.
Now although the Croedurians aren’t going to win any awards for amazing creature design they are the perfect, yet most simple, example of my creation process. It all starts out with just a dumb thought somewhere in the back of my head and that all leads to hours of research. Research. I cannot recommend this enough. It’s great motivation when it comes to actually designing your creatures features and even deciding on a culture. As I said in my last post, I even went into research marine biology for the creation of my mermaids. Research can be so inspirational and it’s a great way to explore the world around you.
From the research stage I move forward and do my summary profile (what you read above) and my ranting paragraphs about the species. I just go on and on about everything from the origins of the species, it’s evolution, why it has certain traits and even any weird habits they have (Croendurians have a strange thing for gold, yet all have an allergy to silver to varying degrees). These ranting paragraphs even help me develop things about the creature I never would have originally thought of unless I just shut my brain off and started to write. Okay I lied, don’t turn your brain off. It’s actually at this point I’m recalling all the research I did and pulling it forward to help in the creatures more extended production.
After writing my summary and my rants I move on to drawing the creatures final designs. Croendurians are admittedly incredibly boring from a design stand point so posting an example of them won’t be too “oh wow they’re so crazy and weird looking” seeing as they are basically giant/human hybrids.
Imagine someone of South Asian background making babies with an stereotypical red head.
Boom! Croendurians appearance in a nut shells!
After I have their appearance, background, fun facts, and general “ness” figured out I am pretty much all set to throw them into the heat of the plot. I wanted to use the Croendurians as an example for this particular post seeing as, as previously stated, they’re basic as all hell. Humans that don’t go snap, crackle and pop and easily. Not everyone has to go to the extent that I go to and do hours of crazy research for facts about the species that will never come up in the story but I will say that once you have your species super fleshed out some things in your plot tend to write themselves.
Another reason why I picked the Croendurians?
This fucker. Marche, one of the main characters in Tales of Lost, a mentor to the main character and also the main character for the prelude story I’ll be posting on here. I wanted to mention his species seeing as they are brought up a lot in fire to the skies and I didn’t want to just toss you guys in there with this strange term being thrown around. Admittedly his skin is supposed to be a tad darker and so are his freckles but this is a pretty good example of his design otherwise.
So essentially I use the same process as when I modify an already existing creature it’s just that this time I really have to research a bunch of different myths, legends, cultures, races and even a bit of science (the tiniest bit, but it’s still there somewhere in regards to the species silver allergy).
I’m thinking two more weeks of this creative process bullshit then we get started of posting the story? If I lack anything to say for any of my blogs next week I’ll post up another creative writing blog.
Monday jump starts a new month of movies watching with a brand new theme so make sure to join me for that. It’s almost midnight so I am going to bring this all to a close. Have a great weekend everyone and remember to stay Tobly awesome!