New Evidence for Dragon Flight

Since the first dragon skeleton was discovered in 1908 by Ernest Hathelwhite, in the Khumara Basin in what is now northern Sudan, experts have been split over the flight capabilities of such beasts.

When the skeleton (Dragonus Primus) was shipped back to England, experts at London’s Natural History Museum rebuilt it, discovering many predicted traits – the distinctive rippled spine and chest construction serving combustion – but no evidence for wings except vestigial nubs over its forelegs.

Dragonus Nova

Up until April 2018, several other examples have been unearthed, notably the famous Dragonus Duoignis (two fires), discovered during excavations in the grounds of Crimliegh Castle, Cumbria in 1982. None so far have provided evidence of wings.

So, the announcement yesterday by a joint team from Cambridge, England, and Paris-Sud universities, that they have found a perfectly preserved specimen in a peat bog in Combourg, Northern France, has peaked interest in the scientific community, international media and of course Game of Thrones fans. The most notable revelation is the existence of its perfectly preserved wings. These are composed entirely of musculature, explaining the missing skeletal evidence at previous sites. This as-yet-unnamed creature is quoted by lead archaeologist Bernard Vitton as being approximately twelve metres in length, with an estimated wing span of thirty metres.

As this specimen is not thought to have been ceremoniously buried or to have died on its ‘nest’, local authorities are keen to point out that treasure is unlikely to be found at the site.

More Drama, Less Action

FightI am currently getting feedback from my brilliant Beta readers on Bindcrafter, and the question as to whether certain sections are too slow has cropped up. But what do we mean by too slow?

Assuming you haven’t added extraneous characters or plotlines which are frustrating to readers, most likely they mean it’s dragging. They don’t often mean slow in the normal sense, let’s get it out there – they mean boring.

So how do you make things less boring? Explosions, fights, murder, deaths?

Not necessarily.

Adding action won’t make your story seem any more interesting to readers, if they’re not invested in it.

So, what’s missing?

DRAMA.

DEF: an exciting, emotional, or unexpected event or circumstance

Exciting can be anything from getting a new puppy to opening exam results. Emotions manifest in interaction between characters and good point of view. Unexpected events can be anything from getting a fly in your soup to finding out your house is about to be demolished by your local council.

You can add a fight scene for drama, as long as it’s exciting – but you need to leverage drama to make it exciting. Getting punched in the face isn’t in itself very interesting. Imagine if you went to see some Shakespeare and the actors spent half the play hitting each other? And we’re all hoping for longer fights in the next Transformers movie, aren’t we? The point is, action in itself isn’t interesting if it’s not dramatic.

Cheap cliché alert: Make that punch an emotional one 😉

The best drama comes through interactions between characters, and change in your protagonist’s feelings. Takeaway: Look for the emotional impact your characters are having on your readers, before adding another explosion.