Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Pinterest Storyboards

One of my New Year's resolutions was to blog more. Since I'm making my first post of 2017 in the latter half of February, you can see how well that's going. However, Elisabeth Grace Foley is hosting a Pinterest storyboard party that invites authors to share their visual inspiration for stories they've written or hope to write. That sounds like fun, and seems like a good way to ease myself back into blogging, so I've joined in!

I tend to gather images as inspiration fairly early in my writing process. (Actually, I've started saving them to my computer, rather than Pinterest--less chance of distraction that way). My storyboards are a hodge-podge of images and ideas to draw from as I plan the story, not necessarily a strictly accurate picture of the story that springs from it.

That said, here are my storyboards!

The first is from a high fantasy novel with the working title Star of the Sea. It revolves around an arranged marriage between a woman who comes from a culture that lives on sailing ships and a prince from a small land nation. There's a lot of focus on culture clash and religion, and the story draws inspiration from The Little Mermaid, Joan of Arc and the biblical story of Joseph. My Pinterest board contains ocean images and sailing ships, as well as clothing and jewelry from Ancient Rome, Byzantium, and medieval times as I try to nail down the visuals for the three main cultures of the book. This story's run into some plotting issues, and is currently on the back burner, but I hope to return to it later this year.

My second board is from Stargazer, a retelling of "The Twelve Dancing Princesses" that takes place on a space station. This board is kind of crazy, because I have sci-fi concept art for the space opera aspects, fairy tale pictures for the retelling aspects, and lots of random pictures of girls to inspire the looks of my twelve princess characters. This is another story I hope to write later this year, once I resolve some plot and pacing issues.

My final board is from The Fairy's Daughters, another retelling of "The Twelve Dancing Princesses". It was inspired by Rilla of Ingleside, and takes place in a fairy tale version of post-WWI Prince Edward Island that has fairies, sea monsters, giants, sylphs, mermaids, pixies, and all sorts of other creatures and characters. I wrote 75,000 words of the story before I abandoned it to work on my entries for Five Magic Spindles. Coming back to it after that experience, I realize that the story needs a complete rewrite, and I'm not certain that I'll ever finish it. However, I still love this universe and I really like this Pinterest board, so I want to share! Who knows, I might return to it someday (and this board is reigniting my enthusiasm for it).

Elisabeth's storyboard party continues until tomorrow. Stop by her blog to see the other great storyboards, and join in if you feel so inclined.


  1. These are all beautiful! Though I write almost entirely straight historical fiction myself, I'm continually amazed by the variety that you fantasy writers come up with when you mix fantasy with historical settings.

    By the way, I read your story in Five Magic Spindles and thought it was terrific—and that's coming from someone whose tastes are usually as far removed from sci-fi as possible! :)

    1. I'm glad you like the boards! Historical fiction was my first love, and I love drawing from history for worldbuilding. (I don't have the research skills to attempt straight historical fiction, but I might gather up the courage to try it someday.)

      And thanks for the compliment on "Out of the Tomb"! I'm so flattered that my story has gathered positive responses from people who aren't into sci-fi.

  2. I love The Twelve Dancing Princesses! I wanted to marry that soldier dude myself when I was a kid. Such a smarty. Looking forward to what you do with all three of these!

    1. I LOVE the soldier. He's my favorite fairy tale hero--he gets chosen for a quest because he's such a good person! What's not to love?

      The Twelve Dancing Princesses is my favorite source for retellings. I have a document that contains twelve different ideas for retelling the fairy tale. (In the time since I made this post, I've even plotted out another one). It's got so many fascinating elements.

    2. AND he completes it because he's intelligent and clever. I really dig him. That's cool you have so many ideas for retellings!