Saturday, February 15, 2014

Tips for Creating a Mythical Language

Image from tumblr
When I first started making a language, Ventwenoian, it was a mess. I didn't know what I was doing. So here's some tips to make the way smoother for you, if you're going to make one:

  • Get a three-ring binder. You could make your language digitally, but I don't carry a laptop or a phone around, so a binder is more convenient. I believe mine is a one inch.
  • Get a notebook that has holes punched into it so you can put it into your binder. Creating a language needs a ridiculous amount of paper, so have a notebook handy.
  • Make grammar rules. I cannot stress this enough. When I first started Ventwenoian, everything was random. What was the future tense with one word could be totally different for another one. The rules don't have to be complex; just don't forget to write them down!
  • Make two pages for each letter of the alphabet. One page has the English words, and the other has your language's. Here's an example:
                         THE A PAGE: ENGLISH
                        Across = seed
                        All = omn
                        Ask = rog
                        And = e

                         THE A PAGE: VENTWENOIAN

                        Amath = baby
                        Ama = face
                        Ai = far
                        Al = get

  • Translate your favorite songs into your language. It's time consuming, but it broads your vocabulary.
  • One last thing:  don't worry about how other authors made their words. I have no idea how Tolkien made Quenya, but I think a lot of them have Old English roots. The only language I know is Latin, so occasionally I derive words from that, such as omn. Usually, however, I just string together letters that sound good.
And there you have it! Good luck with creating your own language. :)

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