Wednesday, May 16, 2012
Since Blood Spirit is taking up so much of the space in my head, I might as well stick with that book for this post. I'm spending the day researching Spain in the 1300s, particularly names and the political landscape. The hero of Blood Spirit, Terek, was a man who lived in the 1300s. He had a wife and child, but after they died, he entered the monastery to dedicate his life to the church as a monk. While these details won't be the main focus of the book, they make up the foundation of who he was that's so important to understanding who he is now.
I find research to be a lot of fun, but I'm a history geek, so this is like a vacation for me. :) I know the outline of the history of the Iberian Peninsula during this time period, but the finer details are what I'm looking for today. For me, this is what adds that genuine flavor to a story.
One of the first things I have to do is give him a name. Terek is the name his sire gave him, but he had a different name as a human. Sure, I can choose any name that sounds Spanish, but I want to be accurate, so I have to spend some time deciding what part of what we today call Spain Terek lived in. Since at the time there really was no "Spain" to speak of but instead a collection of kingdoms, both Christian and the remaining Islamic ones, the choice I make will then determine a number of other issues I'll deal with later in the book.
I'm off to travel back in time to 1300s Spain. Enjoy!