Friday, August 30, 2013

Memorable Worlds: Findenland

And now on to a world of my own...

Findenland is one of the twelve kingdoms in my fantasy world. Yes, all of my fantasy stories take place in one world. It's my own planet and universe in a sense. I'd go into more on that, but this post is strictly about Findenland, so we'll skip the universe topic.

Anywho, the following picture is what I do on Paint. It's not a grand map, nor is it very detailed. It would be, but alas, I do not know all that there is to know about each of the twelve kingdoms. Not yet, anyway.

As you can see, there are twelve kingdoms, all part of a rather large continent. Terretmere is technically an island, but we'll overlook that for now. Findenland, the kingdom in which my story The Twelfth Kingdom (TK) takes place is right smack dab in the center of the other kingdoms. I also marked it with the story title (The Twelfth Kingdom) so that it will be easier to find. And it's entirely landlocked. That actually has quite a bit to do with the story. I'm not sure how well my map is going to turn out, so let me give you a quick tour. Above Findenland and to the left is Darancia, followed by Calottes, Troisem, Renarda, and Veymark. Malarber and Moyena flank Findenland on the left and right, respectively. To the south we have Cot├ędor, Sablia, Pennin, and the island nation of Terretmere. Those, m'dears, are the twelve kingdoms. And Findenland is the twelfth kingdom.

Findenland's inspiration comes from northern countries near the UK, namely Denmark and Norway. The name Findenland really isn't anything special, as I just made it up one day thinking of country's names and realized I didn't have any names that ended in "land" such as "England," "Iceland," "Greenland," "Switzerland," "Thailand," etc. I wanted one at least to end in "land" and then I just stuck "Finden" in front of it. I want to say that "Finden" was derived from a French word meaning something pertaining to the kingdom, but I neglected to write the inspiration down and thus have forgotten it's meaning. I tend to do that a lot.

Geography-wise, Findenland is a mountainous region, with little summer and harsh winters. The mountains surrounding the kingdom harbor terrific storms, so everyone knows to take shelter when they see gray clouds on the horizon, coming over the peaks. Findenland has little to no agricultural resources, so to receive a simple salad with dinner is a major event. Most of the greens that are able to grow in the rocky terrain is tough, and Findens eat more roots and potatoes than any other fruit or vegetable. Just to give a little bit more, this is what Princess Nattalaris says about her kingdom:

“[W]e have no access to the sea and our trade can only come to us from over the mountains. Now, because we have a strong mining industry, we're economically stable. However, we have a weak military and absolutely no navy. That gives us a disadvantage when it comes to political power.”

The people of Findenland are tough like the land. A great epidemic swept through the kingdom previous to the start of TK, and it left a great many of the children in Tellorn, the capital city, as well as many of the other major cities, orphans. It is not uncommon to traverse the streets of Tellorn and see homeless people in the gutters and alleyways. In fact, one of the kingdom's most well-known laws pertains to the orphans. Those who are among the poor and destitute, the orphans and the urchins, are not allowed real names. Instead, they are given letter labels at birth, such as B, J, N, T, Z, etc. This is obviously a rule written by a rich royal, for we all know there are only twenty-six letters in the alphabet, and there are many more than twenty-six orphans. But what do the royals care that the orphans stumble about in confusion due to so many people having the same label? They don't. That's the urchins' problem.

Inside the great castle in Tellorn live the twelve princesses, the people's pride and joy. They are very proud of their princesses, and even though there may be twelve princesses in all, each Finden could recite to you each of their names. Why are they so proud? Because the princesses each used to be part of the dirt on the streets. They were orphans and urchins themselves before the king took pity on them and adopted them as his royal daughters. Who wouldn't be proud of such a king? Well, to be truthful, the princesses themselves, but we won't get into that. That's more about the story of TK rather than the kingdom itself. ;)

The most popular way to travel about Findenland is by horse, although when traveling through the mountains and passes, carriage use is not suggested. The kingdom boasts a great expanse of wilderness amidst the rocks and crags, and it is not uncommon to meet up with the animals of the mountains while traveling. Wild cats, lurking on cliffs and in canyons, are among the worst threat to the safety of travelers, yet the beasts stay away from the lighted and noisy cities. Deer, elk, and other such creatures thrive in the wilderness, and venison is considered a staple on most Fiden tables.

I realize this isn't a very long post, but I want to save some of the info I could put in here for future TK posts, when I'm writing about the story itself and not just the kingdom. So, this is all you get for now.

This post was written as part of the Memorable Worlds series, and by request of Kendra of Knitted By God's Plan, as she is anticipating the release of her new book, The Ankulen. Do stop by her blog!

God bless!

1 comment:

  1. Findenland sounds like a fun world, not least of all because of the twelve princesses ;). I can't wait until you finish the book. I'm sure it'll be really good!