This will be the final entry in the series of my fifth book design notes. Jathy is a place where I got to play with a lot of fun locations. One part I didn’t get to do that much was a mirage. I wanted to, but I couldn’t find a good place to put it in. I tried to do something, but it was more of a side thing to show off some different settings and creatures.
I did get two fun places into the desert, and that’s an underground ruins and a sea of sand. For the underground ruin, the visual I kept in mind was from Toriko, a manga about ingredient hunters. In one story, the main character is searching for an ingredient in ruins hidden underneath the desert. He enters through a massive building, but later on, it’s revealed that massive building is like the tip of the iceberg. The building was just one small tower out of something bigger. While I didn’t make mine quite that large, it still inspired me when I made the underground ruins.
That was also the place where I added in a bit more backstory on the world of Bentas. This is, perhaps, the first hint of another ongoing plotline rather than Milly trying to get home. Yes, it is kind of late, but I have alluded to it in previous books. This will just formalize the backstory of Bentas as something to be looked at going forwards.
The other area I liked doing is the sand sea. I don’t know why, but I tried to give it some kind of explanation other than somehow, the sand in this area is fluid enough for giant worms to swim through. I just like the visual of giant sand monsters. You can find them all over, and perhaps Dune is the best example. It’s just a fantastic visual for me. I tried to make the sand sea part the strangest part of Jathy, to make that place feel even more alien and out there.
Out of all the leaders in other provinces, I think I like Ashar the best. I can’t point to any one reason, but I just want her to succeed and be happy. Being the writer, I could do that, but it’s Milly’s story, and her role in that part is done.
I know this book didn’t have any of Milly trying to get home, but I wanted to change it up. I didn’t want every book to be Milly tries to get home but for some reason or another, she fails. This time, I’m showing Milly off as the Ambassador of Province Relations. She is doing work for this book, and she is decent at it.
That’s it for Jathy! Join me next time for Balab with a new POV character, Rona.