Etcetera

Ideas for novel writing month: Maitreyan rebellions, fairy queens

I have decided to participate in national novel writing month. My usual writing pace is slower than cloud-drift, and I would like to see what would happen if I write a massive amount every day.

I have two ideas that I want to pursue so far.

One is a novel based on the Maitreyan rebellions in ancient China. Factual details here and here. The Maitreyan rebellions were a series of intriguing and surreal uprisings that used the name of the future Buddha.

A skilled magician named Song Zixian claimed to be Maitreya in Tang County (northwest of Yingzhou), and allegedly could transform into the form of a Buddha and make his room emit a glow every night. He hung a mirror in a hall that could display an image of what a devotee would be reincarnated as – a snake, a beast or a human being. Nearly a thousand “from near and far” joined his sect every day, and he plotted to first hold a Buddhist vegetarian banquet (wuzhe fohui) and then make an attack on the emperor who was then touring Yingzhou. The plot was leaked out, and Song was arrested and executed with over a thousand families of his followers.

The other idea is a chronicle of the reigns of several little girls over a fairy kingdom, most of which end in catastrophe. I’ve always wondered what would happen if the children who in so many books stumbled into other worlds really became rulers of them. Thoughts I have so far: the Thith people in the land of Wee Nodd; the queen wears a long cloak red as bull’s blood; Thith horses are the swiftest north of the desert, being made half of moonlight and shadow.

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