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Author Topic: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!  (Read 13579 times)

Offline JMack

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The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« on: May 29, 2016, 06:33:19 PM »
We are chaining @G_R_Matthews to his computer for the entire month of June to answer all your questions about The Stone Road. Want to know his inspirations? Want an explanation for something he totally f*'d up you didn't quite get? How about his address, and advice on stalking your favorite authors? Here's your home for:

Q&A with G_R_Matthews

(comic sans. just for you, @Raptori)
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You are being naive if you think that any sweet and light theme cannot be strangled and force fed it's own flesh. (Nora)
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Offline Raptori

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Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2016, 06:35:31 PM »
I wish the world was flat like the old days, then I could travel just by folding a map.

Offline G_R_Matthews

Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #2 on: May 29, 2016, 07:21:31 PM »
I'm here... ready to answer/deal with your questions.

I'll cheerfully own all the F*** ups and mistakes. They're totally mine :)
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The Stone Road (4/5* Bookwormblues.net) : myBook.to/thestoneroad
Silent City : myBook.to/silentcity

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Offline Peat

Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2016, 11:45:58 PM »
I'll lead with the obvious one - Why Ancient China?
This is the blog of Peat - http://peatlong.blogspot.co.uk/

Offline Kitvaria Sarene

Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2016, 01:09:38 AM »
What was your first inspiration to write the stone road? Was it the setting, our one of the characters, or a part of the plot? What sparked this story in the first place?

Offline G_R_Matthews

Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #5 on: May 30, 2016, 10:06:51 AM »
I'll lead with the obvious one - Why Ancient China?

And I'll answer, why not? :)

The longer answer; I've loved Kung-Fu movies since I was old enough to watch them (probably a bit before that). The video store on Eastcott Hill in my home town (now sadly gone... the shop, not the hill) was a my hunting ground and in those days Film Certificate ratings were more guidance than actual, you know, rules. So I watched a load of them. Then Jonathan Ross did a Jackie Chan series on the new terrestrial channel in the UK (C4) and I was totally hooked. I studied Kung Fu for a year or two and read a lot of Sci-Fi and fantasy books.

Every fantasy book was set in a version of Medieval Europe... every single one. AD&D ruled the fantasy world. There were some outliers, Elizabeth Boyer's Alfar series for instance, though even those were set in a northern European world (though one I loved for its mysticism and hidden worlds... if you haven't read them, they're worth checking out).

So, my fascination with the Far-East, Martial Arts, Magic all got wrapped up in the setting - I wanted to write something a little different, set it elsewhere, in a different culture. The thing is, people usually prefer to read the stuff they know, so I knew it would be a hard sell.

Link to Guest Post on World-building... may contain spoilers!
Staff Writer and ponderer of many things @ fantasy-faction

The Stone Road (4/5* Bookwormblues.net) : myBook.to/thestoneroad
Silent City : myBook.to/silentcity

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Offline G_R_Matthews

Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #6 on: May 30, 2016, 10:10:37 AM »
What was your first inspiration to write the stone road? Was it the setting, our one of the characters, or a part of the plot? What sparked this story in the first place?

This one is simple to answer. In John Keays' book "A history of China" which I was reading as I work on my Diploma of Creative Writing was a single line (maybe two, but single sounds better) about an old Chinese myth. It laid out in a few words the basic story of The Stone Road, cities (unnamed), roads and cattle. I just built the characters,world and magic around that.
Staff Writer and ponderer of many things @ fantasy-faction

The Stone Road (4/5* Bookwormblues.net) : myBook.to/thestoneroad
Silent City : myBook.to/silentcity

www.grmatthews.com

Offline JMack

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Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #7 on: May 31, 2016, 12:11:58 AM »
What was your first inspiration to write the stone road? Was it the setting, our one of the characters, or a part of the plot? What sparked this story in the first place?

This one is simple to answer. In John Keays' book "A history of China" which I was reading as I work on my Diploma of Creative Writing was a single line (maybe two, but single sounds better) about an old Chinese myth. It laid out in a few words the basic story of The Stone Road, cities (unnamed), roads and cattle. I just built the characters,world and magic around that.

Would love it if you can find the two one lines and put them in Spoilers. Possible?
Change, when it comes, will step lightly before it kicks like thunder. (GRMatthews)
You are being naive if you think that any sweet and light theme cannot be strangled and force fed it's own flesh. (Nora)
www.starlit-lands.com

Offline G_R_Matthews

Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2016, 08:54:30 AM »

Would love it if you can find the two one lines and put them in Spoilers. Possible?

I think I know where the book is :) The joy of memory... READ UP TO CHAPTER 17 before looking :)

Spoiler for Hiden:
OK, it was a little more than 2 lines.

Re: King Hui of Qin and the King of Shu (p81-82, China; A History by John Keay)

Five life-size stone cows… were commissioned and, when sculpted to naturalistic perfection, were mischievously embellished by spattering their tails and hindquarters with gobs of purest gold. The herd was then put to grass where emissaries from Shu might observe and reflect.
Shu people being, even by Qin’s doubtful standards, unenlightened in the ways of civilisation and so somewhat credulous, the emissaries reported this remarkable phenomenon to their king; and he of course, excited by the idea of an unlimited supply of gold cowpats, indented for ‘the stone cattle’ as a gift . King Qui of Qin assented. But because of the impossibility of hauling a herd up the scree-trails and panda-paths of two major mountain ranges, he graciously offered first to construct a suitable drive road.
Whatever its origins, this ‘Stone Cattle Road’, of which archaeologists have since uncovered some convincing traces, was a major undertaking… the ruminants (on arrival) failed perform as expected.
Not so easy to repel, though, were the heavily armed and armoured Qin storm-troopers… who followed along ‘Stone Cattle Road’.
« Last Edit: May 31, 2016, 10:42:58 AM by G_R_Matthews »
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Offline JMack

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Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #9 on: May 31, 2016, 10:38:33 AM »
Oh the temptation to look...
Change, when it comes, will step lightly before it kicks like thunder. (GRMatthews)
You are being naive if you think that any sweet and light theme cannot be strangled and force fed it's own flesh. (Nora)
www.starlit-lands.com

Offline G_R_Matthews

Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #10 on: May 31, 2016, 10:42:01 AM »
I'd wait until you've finished Chapter 16 :)
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Offline ScarletBea

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Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #11 on: May 31, 2016, 10:47:58 AM »
Yes Jmack, please wait! Otherwise you miss the impact of a revelation.
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Offline G_R_Matthews

Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #12 on: May 31, 2016, 11:32:55 AM »
Yes Jmack, please wait! Otherwise you miss the impact of a revelation.

What she said!
Staff Writer and ponderer of many things @ fantasy-faction

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Offline observantraven

Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #13 on: May 31, 2016, 06:05:40 PM »
I'm still in and looking forward to it :)

Offline G_R_Matthews

Re: The Stone Road: Ask the Author!
« Reply #14 on: June 01, 2016, 01:15:38 PM »
Once you've read a little bit about Haung... you can look here for the historical basis.

Spoiler for Hiden:
Yes, the Jiin-Wei really existed... and you can check out 14 Blades (film) about them too. I wrote the book before the film came out :) I should sue them... if they hadn't been a historical reality anyway. :)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jinyiwei
Staff Writer and ponderer of many things @ fantasy-faction

The Stone Road (4/5* Bookwormblues.net) : myBook.to/thestoneroad
Silent City : myBook.to/silentcity

www.grmatthews.com