Iron Crown



Behringer, Christiana

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The manuscript I am submitting to you is the first part of a novel I am writing for the internet. I intend to publish it in installments as a serial. What you will read is the pilot episode. The audience I am aiming for is teenagers and young adults. The story is set in a kingdom called the Sundered Lands. Conflict has caused the country to break into the North and South. The North is ruled by Sulih and Curran, while the South is controlled by the Durbar brothers, Kovik and Jenner. Both sides are tired of the feud, but have different ideas about how to put an end to it. Kovik wants to annihilate his enemies. Jenner is indecisive and Curran hopes that someday they might have peace. To find out whether this is possible, Curran travels across the border to assess the Durbar brothers’ intentions. The stakes are raised when, fearing the worst, Sulih sends Grusha and several other warriors after him. Grusha ends up captured by the Durbars and executed and Curran is thrown into prison to face an uncertain fate. A secondary subplot involves tension between Kovik and Jenner. Kovik has started to resent Jenner. He wants the Sundered Lands to be reunified at any cost and with tuberculosis slowly killing him, time is not on his side. The bonds between the brothers snap when the Basilisks Kovik has been secretly raising attack. Jenner orders them destroyed and Kovik begins scheming to undermine him. There were several challenges I faced with this thesis. Because I was writing this, like it would be a pilot episode, I needed to be mindful of pacing. A lot needs to happen within a pilot. You need to have the story move and make the characters and the world feel real. I also struggled with making the characters dynamic. In the initial version, I was dissatisfied with what drove them. Curran’s original plan was to sneak into Helgen to find out how many men the Durbars would gain and there was silliness with Kovik wanting to nail a skull outside of the town. I strengthened the story by changing what the characters wanted. Curran now was willing to consider peace. And Kovik was driven by being terminally ill and racial hatred. I made what he did with the basilisk ambiguous. Some other changes I made included removed confusing filler scenes, such as Jenner and Kovik talking by the river; rearranging the sequence of chapters to improve the pacing; and toning down the fantasy elements. Curran and Kovik became normal humans. Kovik was no longer a magician and Curran was no longer a shapeshifter. I also changed a plot line that was confusing. My original plan was for the reader not to know one of the main characters was Curran himself. In the first version, I called him Kiernan and Sulih “the Earth Delver”. It made the story hard to follow by trying to be coy about who they were so in the end, I figured, let’s just call them Sulih and Curran and not try to make a secret out of who they are. Lastly, I wrapped up some plot inconsistencies. There were unanswered questions, such as how was Kovik able to conceal his pets for so long? Thank you for reading my thesis.



Fantasy, Online publishing