High-Tech Gadgets, Raw Fish and Super-Sharp Swords

The big reveal of the setting for my current novel.

I love making up my own worlds, but there was no other place to put this story than in the very real land of modern day Japan.

There was just no way around it. If I had changed it to fit into the fantastical, magical and extraordinary lands that I normally want to write in, it just wouldn’t have been… well… that extraordinary.

When you have a kind of other worldly thing happening in another world where things like that are prone to happen, it just ends up being kind of normal. It’s just another day in a fantasy world.

But take that same freaky occurrence and put it in a modern setting and you’ve got something interesting.

So that’s what had to happen.

Plus, it involves a samurai.

So Japan was pretty much my only choice.

Although it might be interesting to have a samurai in New York City or even in Spillville, Iowa — yes, that’s really a place — it just wouldn’t work quite right with this particular tale. And it might be kind of weird. Even too weird for something that’s already weird.

I’ve always believed strongly that even fantasy and magic has to make some kind of sense. You can’t just throw out the rules of logic because it’s a magical world.

If I hadn’t spent any time in Japan, I probably wouldn’t have even tackled this story. But I lived with a family there when I was studying in Tokyo. And I travelled around the country a bit. So I do have some first-hand knowledge and can still have a very simple conversation in Japanese.

Although I recently had a friend from Yokohama visit me and boy am I rusty. I couldn’t remember the word for eldest brother, but I remembered the word for cell phone reception. Strange. A reflection of the times perhaps? When technology is more important than family? Yikes, I hope not for me personally. A blog post for another time, perhaps. And probably on someone else’s blog, not written by me…

Oh bloggers of the world, if you want to write that article, let me know! And link back to here.

So, if you had to guess which of the three things in the title are featured most prominently in my novel, what would it be? High-tech gadgets, raw fish, or super-sharp swords?

Hmm…. I’ll give you a couple hints… normally a fantasy writer… writing about samurai…

Yeah. Not sure. It’s a tough one.

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