Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring, 2001

Fellowship of the Ring.jpg

December 19, 2001
Dir. Peter Jackson
Prod. Barrie M. Osborne, Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh, Tim Sanders
Genre: Epic High Fantasy
Starring: Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Liv Tyler, Viggo Mortensen, Sean Astin, Cate Blanchett, John Rhys-Davies, Billy Boyd, Dominic Monaghan, Orlando Bloom, Christopher Lee, Hugo Weaving, Sean Bean, Ian Holm, Andy Serkis

I love Lord of the Rings. The whole series is amazing and it’s definitely what kicked off my love for New Zealand.

I’ve seen the first film in the trilogy more times than I can count and think it’s absolutely brilliant. I recently bought the extended edition (finally) and have really enjoyed seeing all the behind the scenes stuff that went into making the film.

If I were to ask you to name a film (or several) that you thought was truly great I’m sure everyone would have a different answer. However, I don’t think anyone can deny that Fellowship of the Ring is definitely on that list.

Fellowship brings together an intriguing plot, fascinating characters, and a beautiful landscape and creates what is probably one of the best films of all time.

The film follows Frodo Baggins, a hobbit from The Shire, as he embarks on a quest to destroy an all powerful ring. A ring that could bring an end to Middle Earth if it fell into the wrong hands. With the help of several companies along the way, Frodo takes great steps on his journey to saving all of Middle Earth.

Now, as I mentioned before Lord of the Rings is full of interesting characters and in this first film we meet the original ‘fellowship’: Frodo, Sam, Merry, Pippin, Gandalf, Aragorn, Boromir, Legolas, and Gimli.

All of these characters are very different and not only do they each bring something unique to the fellowship, but they bring something unique to the screen that makes the film all the more enjoyable.

On the surface each character appears very simple, Frodo is the hero, Sam the loyal companion, Merry and Pippin the comic relief, Aragorn the warrior, and Boromir the traitor. But they are all so much more than that. Each character, from Gimli to Gandalf, offers comedic moments and heart wrenching moments; moments where you admire their bravery and moments where you want to slap them for their stupidity (you know who I’m talking about).

However, even at their lowest moments you can’t help wanting these characters to succeed. Maybe not at everything they attempt to do (like, you know, stealing the ring from Frodo), but at most things. You want to see what happens next, where these characters are going, what they’re going to encounter.

And what they encounter is a whole lot of adventure and a whole lot of beauty as they travel across Middle Earth aka New Zealand.

Over the years my dream destination has changed drastically. As a child of course I wanted to go to Disney World. Then as I got older I wanted to go to England and Scotland, two places my family comes from.

Well now I’ve been to Disney World and I’d still love to go to England Scotland one day, for many years now I’ve wanted nothing more than to go to New Zealand. And Lord of the Rings played a big part in that.

Fellowship was my first memorable view of New Zealand and every time I watch the film and the ones that follow I desperately want to walk the same paths the fellowship follows over mountains and trails.

 New Zealand is Middle Earth, it is magical and mysterious and full of creatures that don’t exist anywhere else.

Kiwi 2.jpg

Fellowship of the Ring is a cinematic masterpiece. Not only does it contain all the things required to make a good film (interesting plot, characters, etc.), but it also contains something that keeps the audience completely entranced. I don’t quite know how to describe it, but anyone who has watched Lord of the Rings will know what I’m talking about.

There’s just something about these films, and Fellowship in particular, that keeps you watching over and over again.

Near the start of this review I called this film one of the best films of all time and I stand by that statement. There are many films that could fall into that category, but for all the reasons stated above and many more, I think you can see why Fellowship belongs there.

What do you think of Fellowship of the Ring? Which character is your favourite?

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Character Profile: Aimee Emerson

Happy Mother’s Day everyone! To celebrate here’s a profile of the mother in Brave Young Boys, Aimee!

Aimee.jpgName: Aimee Elizabeth Emerson
Nickname: Aims
Age: 48
Age Appearance: Late 40’s – Early 50’s
Sex: Female
Gender: Female
Sexual Orientation: Straight
Birth Date: August 6th
Status: Alive
Species: Human
Ethnicity: Canadian (I did Google of this was an ethnicity and apparently it is, but it does seem weird)
Name Origin: France
Name Meaning: Beloved Friend
Name Pronunciation: Ay-mee
Archetype: The Caregiver
Western Astrological Sign: Leo
Zodiac Sign: Snake

Physical Traits: Average height, tan from working outside so much
Height: 5’10”
Weight: 170lbs
Glasses/Contacts: None
Eye Colour: Brown
Hair Colour: Sandy Blonde
Hair Style: Shoulder Length, Usually tied up
Facial Hair: None
Distinguishing Marks (Scars, Birthmarks): Couple scars from over the years
Dress Style: Jeans, tshirts, blouses, pastel colours

Strengths: Proud, Charitable, Organized, Loyal, Caring
Weaknesses: Wilful, Jealous, Easily Frustrated

Allergies: None
IQ: 101
General Health: Healthy except for the occasional migraine
Medical History: Nothing too serious
Handicaps: None
Mental Health: Depressed post-Kyler
Blood Type: A+
Medication: Headache pills
Speech (Pace, Vocab): Fast paced, Vocab depends on who she’s with

Parents: Elizabeth and Michael
Siblings: Maggie
Pets: None
Relationship Status: Married
Significant Other(s): Todd
Children: Nova, Kyle (d), Nathan
Other Relatives: Josh, Caleb, and Autumn
Places Lived: Canada, volunteered for a year in Cambodia
Birth Place: Canada
Birth Order: Oldest
Class: Class
Friends: Three currently unnamed friends as I haven’t written that chapter yet
Relationship History: A high school sweetheart, brief relationship with fellow volunteer in Cambodia, few failed dates over the years before meeting Todd

Education: College Graduate
Degree(s): Business
Average Grades: N/A
Criminal Record: Couple speeding tickets
Occupation: Florist
Employment History: Dental Receptionist
Own/Rent: Own
Lives With: Todd and Nate
Transport: Car

Lefty/Righty: Righty
Handwriting: Neat
Accent: Canadian
Languages: English, Some Khmer
Groups/Alone: Groups
Leader/Follower: Leader
Introvert/Extrovert: Extrovert
Attitudes: Positive
Planned/Spontaneous: Planned
Daredevil/Cautious: Cautious

Hobbies: Jogging
Quirks: Reorganizes things when frustrated
Confidant: Usually Todd
Habits/Mannerisms: Taps Foot, Crumpler things when nervous
Accomplishments: Opened Shop
Talents: Floral Arranging
Wishes: Pre-Story: Typical things like a wish for a new car or to win the lottery. During story: Wishes for her family back
Phobias: Spiders
Religion: Not Practiced
Politics: Avoids Politics
Secrets: Depressed (trying to hide it)
Insecurities: Started questioning and doubting herself after Kyle joined up
Memory: Scarily good memory, ‘mom of three teens memory’

Priorities: Family and the shop
Goals: Maybe open a second shop
Short Term Goals: Make it through each day
Long Term Goals: Give the kids a good life
Addictions: None
Smokes: No
Drugs: No
Alcohol: No

Sleeping Habits: Light Sleeper
Dream Job: Florist
Relaxes Them: Gardening, Walking
Excites Them: Jogging, Holidays

Favourite Food: Garlic Bread
Favourite Sport: Not a big sports person
Favourite Book: Interview With a Vampire – Anne Rice
Favourite Music: Country
Favourite Animal: Otter
Favourite Colour: Red
Favourite Season: Spring
Favourite Holiday: Christmas
Favourite Show: Pushing Daisies (Thought it was a gardening show, ended up staying for Lee Pace)
Favourite Scent: Violets
Favourite Pastime: Gardening (especially with the kids)
Favourite Film: Mamma Mia, 2008
Favourite Quote: “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” – C.S. Lewis
Favourite Place: Cambodia
Favourite Number: 12
Favourite Curse Word: None

Least Favourite Food: Fish
Least Favourite Sport: Basically all of them
Least Favourite Book: Doesn’t really have one, though she isn’t a big fan of new – age vampire novels
Least Favourite Music: Rap
Least Favourite Animal: Fish
Least Favourite Colour: Green
Least Favourite Season: Winter
Least Favourite Show: Game of Thrones
Least Favourite Pastime: Fishing (Todd took her a couple times and it started a lifelong phobia)
Least Favourite Film: Inkheart
Least Favourite Place: The dentist, freaked her out since she was little so Todd always took the kids
Least Favourite Number: 13

Imagined Actor Portrayal: Julianne Moore

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Character Creation: Giving Them Goals

Goals.jpg

Everyone has goals. I have goals, I’m assuming you have goals, and your characters should have goals.

Have you ever read a book or seen a film in which the main character(s) didn’t have goals? No? That’s because the story would be really boring!

Imagine Harry Potter where Harry doesn’t go after Voldemort; The Hunger Games where Katniss doesn’t lead the Rebellion; Star Wars where Luke doesn’t destroy the Death Star.

Those stories would all be over pretty quickly. I mean, sure, they made for some interesting Alternate Universe fanfics, but a story where the main character doesn’t have a goal isn’t much of a story.

The goal doesn’t even have to be anything major like saving the galaxy, it can be simple. Ever read The Very Hungry Caterpillar? I did. About a million times as a kid. And that caterpillar had a goal. It’s goal was to eat everything in sight.

This might be a bit of a weird example, but you get the point. The goal can be as tiny as eating four strawberries or as huge as saving the planet or galaxy from someone set on destroying it.

Whatever they may be, give your characters goals. They need it and the story needs it.

What goal does your main character have?

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Names of the Week

Andrea

Female
Nickname: Andy; Andie
Pronunciation: An-dree-uh
Origin: Italian
Meaning: Brave
Well-Known Andreas: Andrea (Yesterday’s Child, Barbara Wood), Andrea (The Walking Dead), Andrea ‘Andie’ McPhee (Dawson‘s Creek), Andrea ‘Andy’ McNally (Rookie Blue), Andrea Joy ‘AJ’ Cook (Actress), Andrea Russett (Youtuber)

Carol

Female
Alternate Spelling: Carole
Pronunciation: Care-uhl
Origin: French
Meaning: Song of Happiness
Well-Known Carols: Carol Danvers (Marvel Comics), Carol Peletier (The Walking Dead), Carol Ross (ER), Carol Baldwin (Coronation Street), Carol Higgins Clark (Novelist), Carol Ann Sheilds (Novelist)

Glenn

Male
Alternate Spelling: Glen
Pronunciation: Glen
Origin: Celtic
Meaning: From the Wooded Valley
Well-Known Glenns: Glenn Rhee (The Walking Dead), Glenn Masters (Star of Babylon, Barbara Wood), Glenn Danzig (“The Misfits”), Glenn Worf (Country Music Bassist), Glenn Lee Beck (American TV Host)

Hershel

Male
Pronunciation: Her-shul
Origin: Hebrew
Meaning: Deer
Well-Known Hershels: Hershel Greene (The Walking Dead), Hershel Agasa (“Case Closed”), Hershel McGriff (NASCAR Driver), Hershel Layton (“Professor Layton”

Judith

Female
Nickname: Judy; Jude
Pronunciation: Joo-dith
Origin: Hebrew
Meaning: He Will be Praised
Well-Known Judiths: Judith Grimes (The Walking Dead), Judith Miller (American Journalist), Judith Butler (American Philosopher), Judith Shakespeare (Daughter of William Shakespeare)

Lizzie

Female
Alternate Spelling:
Nickname: Liz
Pronunciation: lih-zee
Origin: Isreal
Meaning: Form of Elizabeth
Well-Known Lizzies: Lizzie Samuels (The Walking Dead), Lizzie McGuire (Lizzie McGuire), Elizabeth ‘Lizzie’ Bennet (Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen), Lizzie Lakely (Emmerdale), Elizabeth ‘Lizzie’ Lillian Marvelly (New Zealand Singer-Songwriter), Elizabeth ‘Lizzie’ Mickery (British Writer)

Merle

Male
Pronunciation: Merle
Origin: England; France
Meaning: Blackbird
Well-Known Merles: Merle Dixon (The Walking Dead), Merle Haggard (Country Singer), Merle Evans (Circus Band Conductor)

Mika

Unisex
Alternate Spelling: Micah
Pronunciation: mee-kuh; my-kuh
Origin: Isreal
Meaning: Humble
Well-Known Mikas: Mika Samuels (The Walking Dead), Mika Grainger (Waterloo Road), Mika Boorem (American Actress), Mika Abdalla (American Actress), Mika Brzezinski (TV Host and Journalist), Mika (Singer)

Morgan

Unisex
Pronunciation: mor-guhn
Origin: Celtic
Meaning: By the Sea
Well-Known Morgans: Morgan Jones (The Walking Dead), Morgan le Fay ‘Morgana’ (King Arthur Legend), Morgan Flynn (“The Sims 3”), Morgan York (American Actress), Morgan Freeman (American Actor)

Rick

Male
Nickname: Ricky
Pronunciation: rik
Origin: England
Meaning: Brave Ruler; Diminutive of Richard
Well-Known Ricks: Rick Grimes (The Walking Dead), Rick Blaine (Casablanca), Rick (“Portal”), Rick Riordan (American Author), Rick Springfield (Australian Singer)

Sasha

Unisex
Alternate Spelling: Sacha
Pronunciation: Sah-shuh
Origin: Greece
Meaning: Defender of Mankind; Diminutive of Alexander (Russia)
Well-Known Sashas: Sasha (The Walking Dead), Sasha (Absolute Friends, John le Carre), Sasha Braus (Attack on Titan), Sasha Filippov (Enemy at the Gates), Sasha Issenberg (American Author), Sasha Skenderika (Bosnian Poet)

Shane

Unisex
Pronunciation: Shane
Origin: Ireland
Meaning: Gift From God
Well-Known Shanes: Shane Walsh (The Walking Dead), Shane Collins (Morganville Vampire, Rachel Caine), Shane McCutcheon (The L Word), Shane Botwin (Weeds), Shane Edward Smeltz (New Zealand Footballer), Shane Dawson (Youtuber)

Tara

Female
Pronunciation: tar-uh
Origin: Gaelic
Meaning: Tower; Hillside
Well-Known Taras: Tara Chambler (The Walking Dead), Tara Duncan (Tara Duncan, Sophia Audouin-Mamikoian), Tara Brennan (13 Gifts, Wendy Mass), Tara James (Chrissa Stands Strong), Tara Knowles (Sons of Anarchy), Tara Reid (American Actress), Tara Gilesbie (Apparently an Infamous Fanfiction Author)

Tyreese

Male
Alternate Spelling: Tyreece; Tyrese; Tyrees
Nickname: Ty; Reese
Pronunciation: Ty-reese
Origin: America
Meaning: Enthusiastic
Well-Known Tyreeses: Tyreese (The Walking Dead), Prince Tyreese (Dirt), Tyrese Darnell Gibson (American Singer), Tyrees Allen (American Actor)

The Walking Dead returns tomorrow and I decided to celebrate with some Walking Dead names! I’ve also been celebrating quite a bit over on my other blog with a Top 10 Favourite Episodes countdown which you can find here!

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Character Creation: Favourite Things

This one isn’t a requirement when you’re creating your characters, but it’s definitely fun.

Favourite books, films, music, their idol. Obviously if you’re going to include any of this info in the book it should be accurate to your writing. If you’re writing a Victorian Era novel, your main character probably wouldn’t have One Direction as their favourite music.

However, if you’re not planning on including that information in your novel and you think, “if my MC was alive today, what would he/she like?” and you come up with One Direction? Go for it! Knowing your characters favourite things, even if they aren’t included in the book, can help you as the author to connect more to your characters.

I created these character creation sheets (which I’m desperately trying to convert to PDF so I can share them with all of you) and at the bottom of the second page it looks like this:

Fave Things

Now I know most of these don’t say ‘Favourite’ or ‘Fave’ in front of them, but that’s because so far I’m the only one using these sheets and I know what I mean. I may actually make these character profiles longer to include more info.

I’ll use Nathan from Brave Young Boys as an example because I’ve already posted a full profile of him on here in the past. BYB is a pretty easy one for me to do since it’s set in modern times so coming up with stuff Nathan would like was easy.

Favourite television show would be Once Upon A Time. Favourite colour is yellow. His favourite food is spaghetti and hot dogs. He doesn’t have a favourite sport because he dislikes sports and would rather either read or play video games. But why include this information? Why do I need to know any of this?

It’s not likely that he’s going to be sitting down to watch an episode of OUAT is it? I don’t have the copyright for that. But it gives me a sense of what this character is like outside the story.

His favourite colour is yellow so his bedroom is probably yellow. He’s thirteen years old and going through a rough time and because of that he spends a lot of time in his room so having an idea of what that room is like is great.

He doesn’t like sports so when he’s at school in the novel he isn’t going to like gym class, but English or Drama (his favorite subject) would probably be much better.

These are tiny details, things that may never make it in to your novel, but they’re a great resource for you as the writer. It brings the characters to life and gives you the chance to turn them into three-dimensional characters instead of these flat beings that last only as long as the book.

I’ll keep trying to convert my character biography sheets to PDF format and hopefully I’ll be able to post it soon. I’m also hoping to post another character profile for another character from BYB, maybe next weekend!

Update: It’s been converted and posted below!

I’ve only got two more posts in this character creation series, but if you have anything else you’d like me to talk about then let me know!

Do you give your characters favorites? What are they?

Character Creation Chart Template PDF

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Character Creation: Archetypes

Archetypes

I learned about archetypes in school and never understood them. For the life of me I just didn’t get it.

However, more recently, I’ve started to understand them. Not completely, but in context to my own characters and what they mean for representation in my writing, the concept of archetypes does make more sense.

I once again found a helpful chart (which I have included below) on GoTeenWriters.com that lists a bunch of different archetypes along with a description. This has been incredibly useful and helpful to me in figuring out what archetype (or archetypes) fit my characters best.

But what exactly is an archetype? And why do we need them? What are the main archetypes? How do they help your story?

Let’s start simple: what is an archetype?

“The original pattern or model from which all things of the same kind are copied or on which they are based”
Dictionary.com

Pretty simple, right? The original idea of hero is what other heroes are now based on. Obviously there’s some deviation and not every hero is the same, but the general idea is there.

But why do we need archetypes? How do they help your story?

Technically I guess we don’t need archetypes. At least, we don’t need the word archetypes. We’d still have them, these general ideas for what certain people in stories are like or should be like, even if we didn’t call them archetypes.

There’d still be a hero and a villain, we’d still have characters classified as anti-heroes and survivors and temptresses.

I find that the idea of archetypes really helps the story in the sense that it gives you a base line for what your characters can or should be like. It allows you to have some idea of the traits your character may have or the skills they may possess.

A character classified as a Survivor can probably go one of two ways. Either they’re a survivor in the sense that they’ve been through a lot and have come out the other side. This kind of character may have scars, physical or mental or both, to show for their struggles.

You may also have someone classified as a Survivor who lives out the wild and literally does whatever they have to to survive. This kind of character may have hunting skills or wilderness skills.

You get the idea.

One of the characters in my novel is the archetype of Analyst so he can explain anything in a totally rational way. This goes together with some of his other traits (he’s really nerdy and loves technology) and it really gives me a sense of what this character would actually be like.

Finally, what are the main archetypes?

Carl Jung, a psychiatrist from Switzerland, is the one who came up with the idea of archetypes and he believed there to be four main archetypes:

The Self, which Jung often represented using a circle as it is the unification of all the parts of the person that make up The Self.

The Shadow is the archetype based in the unconscious mind that is basically our human instincts.

The Anima or Animus (The Soul) represents our true self as opposed to what we show to the rest of the world

The Persona is the opposite of The Anima or Animus as it is what we show the world as opposed to our true self.

While these are the four main ones Jung came up with, there were several others he talked about including: The Father, The Mother, The Child, The Hero, The Trickster, and a few more.

Along with these, the four main archetypes have also been divided into sort of subcategories which include twelve archetypes:

The Innocent
The Orphan
The Hero
The Caregiver
The Explorer
The Rebel
The Lover
The Creator
The Jester
The Sage
The Magician
The Ruler

You can see these twelve and how here. This website has lots of great information about the twelve archetypes I just listed.

You can also find more information about the four main Jungian archetypes I listed by going here.

Archetypes can be a great help to your novel and when you’re figuring out your characters. They’ve definitely helped me a lot in writing Herro.

Check out the links for more info and the chart below for a list of archetypes!

Which archetypes do you find represents your characters?

Character-Archetypes

Twelve_Character_Archetypes

Character Creation Chart Template PDF

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Names of the Week

Adelaide

Female
Nickname: Addy
Pronunciation:
Origin: Germany
Meaning: Of Noble Kin; Nobility
Well-Known Adelaides: Adelaide Brooke (Doctor Who), Adelaide Langdon (American Horror Story), Adelaide Anne Procter (English Poet), Adelaide Crapsey (American Poet), Adelaide Clemens (Actress)

Berlyn

Unisex
Alternate Spelling:
Nickname: Lyn
Pronunciation: Ber-lyn
Origin: Germany
Meaning: Son of Berl
Well-Known Berlyns: Berlin (Pop Band, 1980s), Ava Berlin Renner (Daughter of Jeremy Renner)
*These are the only ones I could find, but if you know of others let me know and I’ll add them to the list!*

Elise

Female
Alternate Spelling: Elize
Nickname: El; Ellie
Pronunciation: eh-lees
Origin: Germany
Meaning: Consecrated of God
Well-Known Elises: Elise McKenna (Somewhere in Time), Elise de la Serre (“Assassin’s Creed: Unity), Elise Rainier (Insidious), Elise Neal (Actress), Elise Crombez (Model)

Jaeger

Male
Alternate Spelling: Jager; Jaegar
Pronunciation: jay-ger
Origin: Germany
Meaning: Hunter
*Common Last Name**
Well-Known Jaegers: Jaeger Willis (“The Willis Clan”), Werner Jaeger (German Classicist), Hans Jaeger (Norwegian Writer), Gustav Jaeger (German Painter), August Jaeger (English Music Publisher)

Otto

Male
Pronunciation: aw-toe
Origin: Germany
Meaning: Wealth
Well-Known Ottos: Otto Klopp (Leviathan Series, Scott Westerfeld), Otto Octavius (Marvel Comics), Otto (Sons of Anarchy), Otto Graham (Football Player), Otto von Bismarck (Politician)

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