My name is J. R. Jovanovska and I love telling stories. I also love to read books, especially fiction, science-fiction, and fantasy. I am working on a fantasy novel, which will likely become a series of novels, because the story can’t possibly be expected to fit into just one book.
It is my addiction to words and what they can do that brought about the inspiration for this blog and my dream to be an author. Ideally, when the manuscript is ready, I will have several background and short stories featuring my novel’s characters already out there in the blogosphere. I also plan to share some of the vocabulary for the language I created that the desert tribes speak. These stories and resources may form an anthology to go along with the novels in the future, or could remain a free thing for readers to enjoy and help bring them more deeply into my world.
My love for words has also manifested in a love of languages and I’ve spent lots of time researching, studying, and working on learning several of them. I’m happy to say that I’ve got a pretty good repertoire of them tinkering around in my brain, but none as strongly as I would like, save for the two that I’m actually fluent in. Mostly, I know enough foreign language to survive if I were ever dropped off in Europe, either Europe of the present or Europe of the ancient past (Yay for studying Latin, Old & Middle English, and Middle French!) This love for language brings me around to the title of this blog…
One of the storylines that will feature prominently in my work here and in my currently unfinished/unpublished novel deals with a race of nomadic people that live in the desert. I decided to create a language for them, to aid in the immersion and sense of depth and culture that I loved exploring and playing around in. These people were first introduced through the medium of Online Role-Playing, which is similar to table-top games like Dungeons & Dragons, but rather than being run by a DM/GM (Dungeon Master/Game Master), the characters are generated to play off of and interact with one another in chat rooms and on message boards, turning a game into more of a session of interactive story-telling.
For several years, this was where I spent hours and hours of my time. I was very fortunate not only to create some fun, exciting, and deeply developed characters, but to form some fun, exciting, and deeply developed friendships with the players of some of those other characters.
But, back to my language experiment…
I spent a great deal of time and energy molding, crafting, and detailing the nuances of this group of people. Given my background in studying language and the mechanics and history of such, I labored for many months to birth my creation. I had a large vocabulary that included verbs and their conjugations into various tenses, rules for word structure and grammar, and even details about what letters could be put together and what would not be used in their alphabet.
Suffice it to say, I was and still do remain very proud of my language project.
Then, one of my friends who was playing a character who knew parts of this language asked me how his character would say, “sand”.
I admit that while I created this language and even played at using phrases and such in casual conversation to get better at it, occasionally I still had to consult my copious notes and word files for reference.
I couldn’t find a word in my records for sand. Anywhere.
“This is impossible!” I said. How could I work for YEARS creating this community of desert folk, down to the minutiae of everything… and not have made a word for sand?
But, I had not… and I had to tell my friend that, as I created one on the spot. This then became a running joke among our group that I still laugh at myself about to this day.
So, when I had to think of a title for this blog I wanted something that summarized my creativity and the joy I had in inventing stories and characters, and that would also remind me that I’m not perfect no matter how much hubris I may fall victim to. Herein the name was born.
Aside from reading and writing, I love making beaded and stone jewelry, blending scented oils, and making bath salts and soaps. I enjoy cooking, music (listening to and performing), board games (especially trivia), stargazing, bowling, going to movies and plays, and researching anything that happens to pique my interest. I never know where a new idea will lead me until I’m there. Along with this, I love trying new things to see if I will enjoy them because even if I don’t, I’m always richer for the experience.
I have a cat, Saladin, and a wonderful such-long-term-we-might-as-well-be-married boyfriend, Phillip, who I am devoted to and grateful for every day of my life.
I also love naps.
So welcome to No Word For Sand. I hope you will enjoy sharing my stories and my journey with me.