Fantastic Friday Writers - Languages

Author: Anastasia V. Pergakis // Category:

Another edition of Fantastic Friday Writers. Today we are talking about languages. As a writer, you have many option on how to convey languages in your story. You can simply tell the reader the characters are speaking a different language, use a few sparing words throughout the dialogue, or create a brand new language entirely.

I'm going to talk about an important part dealing with the last two options. Any time you create a new word, phrase, or entire language, one thing you must consider is how you want your language to sound. Soft and smooth, or more rough and harsh?

Soft sounds include letters like d, s, l, m, b, while harsh sounds include k, t, g, p. So, when creating your new words or language, you can clue in on certain letters to make your language sound the way you want.

For example, when cretaing new words for the faerys in Burden of Prophecy I wanted their language to be very soft sounding. So I tried to avoid using k or t in the words, or if I did, I used them very sparingly. So, I came up with words like verlina (a flower that has addictive properties but most often used for healing purposes) and faena (woman).

So what about your characters in their own worlds? What languages do they speak and how do they sound?

Now, for a bit of fun, I like to doodle on paper to see what my new language would look like in text. For a soft sounding language, like the faery's in Burden of Prophecy, I decided to go with something with lots of curves, loops, and long tails to add to the softness and elegance I wanted to show for the language. I never actually made an official text of my faery's language or I'd show you a picture. However, it is still fun to figure things like that out, even just for a feel of how your characters would write a letter or a note.

Don't forget to check out the rest of the Fantastic Friday Writers to see what they say about languages! Our group has more than doubled since the last post, so please make sure to stop and welcome our newest members! They are all great fantasy and sci-fi writers, and you can learn more about them here.

6 Responses to "Fantastic Friday Writers - Languages"

J. D. Brown Says :
March 25, 2011 at 6:18 AM

Stopping by to say HI babes! :)

Charlene A. Wilson Says :
March 25, 2011 at 6:56 AM

I love how you pointed out the soft and harsh sounds. And I think I'll try writing out my words. ;) Imagine the Shilos writing a love letter in their native tongue. :D

Alex J. Cavanaugh Says :
March 25, 2011 at 10:31 AM

I knew some letters sounded softer than others. I think the names of my book's flagships were all feminine and soft.

Anastasia V. Pergakis Says :
March 25, 2011 at 11:32 AM

J.D. : HI! back. :)

Charlene : Oh I would love to see a love letter written in their native tongue! I bet it's gorgeous script.

Alex : Well that makes sense since ships (and even cars) are often called "she" right? *laugh*

M Pax Says :
March 25, 2011 at 11:46 AM

I love the ideas you lay out here. Inventing stuff and then thinking up the perfect thing to call it is fun.

I based my alien language on Sumerian. I wanted that Earth link. I would love to read sentences in your faery language. Bet it's pretty.

Elizabeth Mueller Says :
March 25, 2011 at 5:47 PM

This was such a fun post to write. I love inventing words and creating languages. Thanks for your imagication, girl!


Have a great weekend, Ana!

♥.•*¨ Elizabeth ¨*•.♥

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