I spent a chunk of the last couple of days putting together a grant application. I had to talk a lot about Hild. So now I want to share something of her with you. But I hate sharing fiction before it’s finished. So I made this Wordle:
The day before yesterday I went to wordle.net, uploaded the first 20 pages of Hild, hit Enter and sat back expectantly. Phht, nothing. My security levels were set too high. I fixed them. Tried again. Phht. And again. Phht. At this point, I *really* wanted that knife. Then Kelley (saint Kelley, pretty Kelley, nicekind Kelley) took pity on me and touched 3 keys and mended some Java crap or other. So I put down the chair I was about to throw through the window and gave her a neck rub and now everybody is happy.
If you click on the pic you can get a bigger version. Note all the short words. That’s my aim: simplicity. I feel smug.
Info about some of the names: Hereswith is Hild’s sister. Onnen is the woman who is more mother to Hild than her actual mother, Breguswith. Hild and her family are Anglisc (the ‘sc’ is pronounced ‘sh’). Onnen is British (or wealh, as the Anglisc would say–a slave; wealh is the word ‘Welsh’ comes from). Cian is Onnen’s son, about the same age as Hereswith: three and a half years older than Hild. Hild and Cian grow up together. They speak British when they’re alone (a filthy language, the Anglisc think) and Anglisc at other times. They have very different paths but fate, being fate, takes a hand. Oh, and Ceredig is the king of Elmet, who, through an act of kindness, changes Cian’s life utterly. A gesith is a full-time warrior, much given to boasting, drinking, and killing people. (Note the prominence of the word ‘sword’.) Cian becomes a gesith, even though technically he begins as a slave.
I am having fun.
taunt tantalise you with more Wordles in the future.
10 thoughts on “for your delectation and delight: Hild”
I hope you rewarded Kelley with an ice-cold Oranjeboom.
“Then Kelley (saint Kelley, pretty Kelley, nicekind Kelley)…” Cracked me up!! :]> >I’m wondering how you have patience to ‘hear’ the words on paper? I hope Hild, the novel, will be good and thick so my mind will grow accustomed to the pronunciations. I’ve always learned languages best by hearing them (out loud) then practicing (out loud). Print is a whole different beast.>>P.S., Love the Wordle. A colleague discovered this last year and we plastered people’s doors with them. Endless fun. >>-Sarah
That wordle bit is magic!>>I had to do this same word exercise with my therapist yesterday, with the word “lake”. Fun!!
That totally rocks, thanks for the link. I put half of chapter one of my mystery novel in & wordled it — very cool :)>>Can't wait to read Hild!>— Jo
Good luck with the grant application. :-) >>What a pretty wordle you got for Hild. It is indeed delightful—and such a tease. I want to read! >>Since I can’t read yet, I played: went and asked randomness to create < HREF="http://kemotes.com/images/MexMetroWordle.gif" REL="nofollow">a wordle<> for my Mexico City < HREF="http://kemotes.com/2008/mexico-city-metro-line-3/" REL="nofollow">Metro poem.<>
Nicola,>>Two minutes ago I stumbled on these two pages of prose scanned and put online by someone I’ve never heard of; they’re from a novel I’ve also never heard of by Ron Miller, of whom I’ve never heard. But I doubt I’ve ever read anything to compare to this text, so I thought of you and whanted to share, which I hope you can accept as a compliment. Anyway, if you have a couple of minutes, take a look: http://vandonovan.livejournal.com/1088311.html>>Enjoy may not be the word. Read and weep, perhaps. Or laugh your head off.>>John-Henri
Your Wordle is lovely – so many fascinating original words and it looks good on the page. Can’t wait to read the book – very tantalising! I had a little play with Wordle and my own effort was clumsy in comparison!!
<>clindsay<>, with Rioja, actually, and just the right temperature, sitting in front of the fire…>><>sarah<>, names are especially tricky in this novel. They are all pronounced according to the rules of their native language. So, for example, Gwladus, a <>wealh<> (in A-S terms, anyway–she says she’s from Dyfneint), is pronounced something like OO-la-doos. But the term gemæcce (an Old English word meaning ‘mate, equal, one of a pair’ which I have repurposed for this novel to mean weaving and other woman-tasks partner, best fried) is spoken as something like yem-ATCH-eh. Doing readings should be interesting :)>><>realmcovet<>, lake, eh? Lots o’ water in this novel: meres, bournes, pools, springs, rivulets, seas, estuaries…>><>sonicbooms<>, I suspect Wordle is a little addictive at first–like Twitter–then it just becomes one part of that online mosaic. So what the biggest word on your Wordle? Was it a surprise?>><>karina<>, thanks. I sincerely hopes it works out–but mostly I apply for these things and forget about them because I’m never sucessful. I don’t think I write granterly fiction. There again, I had a hot streak in 1988–won a scholarship to Clarion and couple of minor corporate grants–and again in 1992 when I scored Georgia and Atlanta grants. But things seem to have changed. I suspect The Powers That Be think I’m too successful to need their money. Or something. But, hey, maybe I’ll hit a hot streak again.>>I liked your Wordle. Very big city vibe.>><>john-henri<>, you may not believe it, but I’ve seen worse. Some of the first CW teaching I did we had one submission so terrible that the other teachers thought it had to be deliberate pastiche. I said, nope, it just sucks. They didn’t believe me, didn’t believe it was possible to write that badly by mistake. Sadly, I was not wrong.
The evidence that wealh means slave evaporates when you look into it. Its in the anglosaxons dictionaries as slave because of a glossary by a single author. He uses wealh for servus 4 times, and thats probably a commentary on the wealh church i.e. servant(slave) of God. Other than that theres no sensible evidence. Sorry.
Anon @ 3:53, please give me some more info: your sources, or perhaps a way to contact you.
Here is where I got the definition: wealh  m (wéales/wéalas) foreigner, stranger, slave; Briton, Welshman; shameless person
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