Ossalene Rite of the Cistavrian Order of Marosites

I have been permitting myself to wallow — yes, wallow — in background for the past couple of days. It’s been great fun, and eye-opening, and because I already know how the book ends, I’ve been able to skip the unnecessary side trips and actually focus just on the parts of the background that will give depth and richness to the book in this rewrite.

There are costume sketches of the Ossalene monks (who are all female), with each part of each costume labeled.

    (Why monks? Because — “A monk is a person who practices monasticism, adopting a strict religious and ascetic lifestyle, usually in community with others following the same path. The word comes from the Greek monachos (μοναχός), commonly translated as a solitary person and can apply to either men or women,” while, “the duties of a nun usually lie in the areas of religious education, nursing or charitable service,” and that’s not what my Ossalenes do.)

A map of the Ossalene Citadel, though not of the secret tunnels that lie beneath it.

The background of the religion of Marositism, the Cistavrian Order, and the Ossalenes themselves. Timeline of travel and expansion of the religion, the magic system of the Ossalenes, the philosophy, the fighting style and names of various moves.

Today I have a number of other Ossalene-related things to explore. But this is my LAST day of wallowing, I swear. This stuff is important, and I know it’s important or I wouldn’t be taking time out to do it. I need to have this framework fully nailed together before I start digging in, because I’ll be using this from page one. But I really do want to get in and start digging on the actual manuscript.

This is such fun, though.

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About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and self-publish my new ones.

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