Adventure Finders! by Rod Espinosa
Adventure Finders is a story about chasing one’s dream no matter what may come.
In a small town at the edge of the empire, Clariette grows up with the dream of one day becoming a great warrior. She is friendly and popular in town. Adopted at birth, she grows up with strong role models in her mother and older sister. Now, she wants to make her own way and go on the path to adventure!
Accompanying her in this quest is Jolfe Endarion, her cousin from her father’s side of the family. He is a budding wizard. Quiet and unassuming. He travels everywhere with his pet dog Jambie. Family and friends are at the center of this story. A newcomer in school by the name of Sister Ariarra Popplevensie now sends Clariette on her way to realizing her dream of wandering the land, fighting evil. Ariarra is a spirit healer. She summons spirit friends to heal and give strength whenever necessary. This gift makes her special in her order. She too, has a dream of making the world a better place for all.
The conflict and struggle
Adventure Finders is a story I have always wanted to make. We’ve all seen fantasy adventure epics starring men. And we’ve seen quite a few with women. But they all focus too much on battles won and lost. I really wanted to make a heroine who not only fights, but cares about what happens to those orphans she saved, how they are getting on, etc. A lot of our movies are one dimensional like that. After the hero walks off and saves the town, he no longer cares what happens there. In Adventure Finders, we will see Clari drawn into the everyday lives of ordinary people. Always trying to help. Always trying to make life better for everyone. And of course, lastly, we almost never see anyone like her, a peasant, rise from the bottom on up. Almost every woman character is always secretly a princess just waiting to claim her right to the throne. But what if you had no bloodline? What if you really had to work hard to get up? What if you were just raised by poor parents? In a patriarchal world of medieval eras, she will face enormous obstacles in her path.
She never gets her rightful due even on the first chapter where she tries out to join an adventuring band. She actually does the most and does the best, but somehow, gets honorable mention behind her cousin Deren, a strong young man who looks impressive, can fight, but really isn’t as good as she is. This will be a pattern moving forward in the series. But somehow, our heroine must overcome all of this to earn her place in the sun. And just like a real hero and leader, she struggles to lift her comrades up, too.
Monsters, Enemies and More!
What would an epic fantasy be without monsters and enemies to fight? Aside from wild beasts and orcs, we do have a real recurring enemy in Clari’s life shaping up. Indiana Jones had Nazis to fight. We love it when he punches the Nazis! Nazis represented terrible racism and authoritarian rule. In fact, in comics in the 40’s Superman also fought Nazis. I continue that time old tradition with a new feminine twist.
So what can be a girl warrior’s arch enemy?
What better fun than have a girl warrior fight the one nemesis that is the bane of women througout all of history? The Taliban, of course! The cult of Arao is unapologetically mysogynistic and violent. (and just like Nazis, you don’t even have to rewrite anything) In chapter one, we will see young Clari deal with the early onset of the cult in her school. From there, it just escalates! You’ll just have to read the chapters for more details.
Finally, aside from battles, I am writing this series really from a female’s perspective. We all know what male fantasy characters do in situations. But I need her to care more than just the outcomes of battles. That’s where women shine, I think. It’s in solving the nitty gritty details while the guys flounce off to the next war.
Clariette will also be left holding the bag more often than not. But she has the strength and the will to carry it through. And she relies on the strengths of her companions more than her own. And that’s how I want to write a good leader.
Well, I hope I gave everyone a good enough of a primer to check out Adventure Finders!
Check this site out for more graphics of this piece and to read additional chapters.