Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Trials of Hallac- Introduction

In May, I took part in a challenge to write 5000 lines of epic poetry in 31 days. I succeeded, and my "epic" poem, "The Trials of Hallac" ended right smack dab on the 5000th line. It's no Odyssey but it's something, I suppose.

I chose to forgo attempting to write in rhyme, but instead focus on syllabic count. Depending on what sort of text you're reading, the number of syllables changes. For reference, here's how things break down:

General exposition has 5, 8, or 14 syllables to the line
Hallac speaks in 16 syllables to the line
Good characters speak in 11 syllable-lines
Evil characters use 6 or 13 syllables
Neutral characters speak in 9 syllable lines
Deities use 3 or 7 syllables to the line
Battle scenes have 12 syllables to the line
Prayer is spoken in 10 syllable lines

For flow purposes, I do on occasion use the half-line. Much of the first three parts of the poem are spoken and described by Hallac, so to keep him from being too long-winded, some lines are only 8 syllables rather than the full 16. Some battle scenes have 6-syllable lines, etc.


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