Tir na Nua
Primarily Tir na Nua is the setting for my Epic Celtic Fantasy. This makes it your home for development ideas, short stories, and information about the world of Tir na Nua created (or rather in the process of creation) by L. Stephen O’Neill.
But What is Tir na Nua Really?
Tir na Nua, the New Land, is a world far from the Earth we know. Three stars light it, three moons circle it, and there are three worlds associated with it. Tir na Nua might look like Earth, there are trees and rivers and seas, there are beasts, and monsters, and men, AND these all live together in varying degrees of harmony.
Yet there are differences. The South is warmed by the sullen glow of a small red dwarf star, Ember, that the planet of Tir na Nua cartwheels around. Much of the weather of this world of necessity comes from that most important and close relationship.
The north draws rain from the south, but it never sees Ember’s light save painted on the world’s satellites. Both north and south are lit by the ghostly blue light that shines from blue/white dwarf, Spark, that seems to wax or wane in relation to the world’s most Earth-like light coming from distant Sol na Nua. The pair of them in close association mark the day, sharing it in the North and brightening the South as well.
Tir na Nua is a world that is marked by cataclysm. The violent genesis of the planet is painted on its moons as well. Nearest is the Wanderer, a blasted lump that hurtles around Tir na Nua, racing across the sky. The Stranger is next nearest, but it is not very reflective, making a ghostly shape in the night sky. Farthest of Tir na Nua’s moons is Bright, truest reflector of the three suns of the world.
I have several stories, likely novel length, that I am in the process of writing. Most if not all are set in the world of Tir na Nua. This new world is a world apart from the Earth that we know and has been, there are names and situations that may seem familiar, but though they echo the world we know, they are not from that world at all.
The People of Tir na Nua
Human habitation has diffused from the center of the Gaellic Plain, over the Western Mountains, across the seas, to the South and the East until it has met its opposite in isolated islands like the volcanic island group of the Losterlies. Man exists on the top of the world, on the ice sheet above the Iron Mountains of the Rus and man also inhabits the misty hot forests of the South. He lives on and in the mountains and he exists and even thrives on the islands of the seas.
Here are some of those peoples:
The Monsters who ravaged the Plain, The Gobli.
After the great hordes sweep the Gaelish Plain, the Norfolk, the people of Oatey Moss and of Jella, still live where the Great Ice Sheet ended and now on the Plains to the South the horse folk, the Scythians, rule unchallenged. (CPSL to continue these stories.)
East over the Saffron and driven down into the great isthmus and the mountains there called Scotia.
Above Scotia is a land of Slave camps and warring city states often called the Disputed Lands. Before the Hordes of Gobli and Darklings ravaged it, the land was controlled by Balor and his Slave Raiders who became the Fomor.
North of the Disputed Lands and East of the Norfolk are the Cold Forests of the Darklings. The Sinoese live above them on the pinnacles of hard rock that stand after the lighter ash of that volcanic lowland was washed away and overgrown with rainforest.
The Great Mountains to the West of the Great Gaellic Plain are ruled by the Lokians. Some call these folk Dwarfs, they are dark and stocky in general, they are miners and workers of metal who live in the continental ridge that divides all the east from Umircea.
Across the Mountains to the Western Seas is Umircea, but in the North of that land is the Ribbon Wood, from whence come the Ui Uilsen, the Ribbonwood Elves.
What is the Purpose of Tir Na Nua
On lstephenoneill.com I plan to gather research material, scene drafts, character development studies, back stories and perhaps short stories that contribute to each novel or at least flesh out this new land, Tir na Nua.
I want to write, fantasy stories, sword and sorcery novels, epic fantasy, you know, the whole lot, and Tir na Nua makes this possible for me. But having the place to write, having stories to tell, wanting to do it, none of these things mean that I can do it. I can put it out there, but frankly, I was never that good a writer, so says my report cards. (Sad to say I thought I did much better in English than I actually did. This was a bit of an unwelcome surprise. Still, I have these stories. . .) I guess my point is that I really need to practice. I need to try to write and see if I can do a good job. Perhaps most of all I need to get faster.
The reality of my life is that there isn’t much time to develop. . . . . . or write. So I’m going to jump on in and do it. As such, these pages are intentionally rough (not because I’m trying to make them bad, I’m trying the best I can as quickly as I can) so that I get the ideas out of my head and onto the page. I think I’ve mentioned that I think of these pages as something of a writer’s notepad.
SO, What’s in the Works?
I’m trying to write an online novel right here in front of you, the reader. Firstly I plan to write a first draft, and I’m not being very picky. I can’t, I’m trying to do it by my birthday. Wish me luck. You can follow my progress here at my progress page for the novel: The Abbott and the Djinn.
I’ve started a story that involves one of Dana Bailey’s children, Lugh, and a young woman of the Norfolk, Oatey Moss. The third main theme of this story is giants. Start to read Child of Moss HERE.
Currently I am focusing on a novel set in a island archipelago, the Losterlies, that is effectively on the opposite side of the world from where humanity was first established and from where it diffused. The working title for this novel is “The Man Who Forgot Himself.”
On the Losterlies are a people known as wanderers or gypsies who are descendants of a particular Inuit by the name of Anuniaq. “Anuniaq Goes to Sea… …Again” is a tale from his life as is Anuniaq and the Storm Tossed Sea.
People groups converge on the Losterlies and one of the cultures that has great impact are the Inuit peoples, known by the Rus as the Icefolk, who leave with the Russians and are later enslaved by them. I want to develop a tale about one of these people, a whale talker, who’s people are annihilated by the iron Rus and who in turn gets revenge and then must rebuild a life afterward. The working title for this novel is “The Poet and the Ice Princess”.
I have a few stories developing in an area of the world, Northern Umircea, that involves or evolved the Ribbon Wood Elves or UiUilsen as they are known. “the Lost Prince”, “Sasha and Faolan”, and a trilogy of stories, “the UiUilsen Cycle” will develop and expand both the peoples of this part of Umircea, the land beyond the Western Mountains of the Gaelish Central Plain.
I love the movie “a Knights Tale” and would like to write my take on the idea of nobility. I also like the idea of warfare as sport presented in that story (I’m an American Football fan) and think it has application, especially in the gaming community of today, but also to the Celtic lifestyle or my perception of what the Gaelic people were about. I want to set my knights tale in Umircea, but I may move the setting to the cities of the Disputed Lands though nobility is much less a factor in that wild land.
An important part of the development of my fantasy world are figures who make a huge impact by virtue of their many talents and even more because of their longevity. The children of Dana Bailey are intended by Dana herself to be a Celtic Pantheon. These genetically altered super Celts make contributions both by virtue of their leadership, and also in just being a tie and a memory to a technological past that is being lost and replaced by new progress informed by the past but not dependant on it. Among the characters stories will touch on: Balor, originally Llyr, who was first born and most willing to serve Dana Baily’s purposes, but came to work hardest against those goals as the leader of the Fomorians; Lugh of the long reach, a wanderer and a philanderer at first, godlike in his self-absorption, his many talents are at last turned to good when he learns responsibility; Bridget, maternal in truth and in temperament, she must learn how to be good at her role; Epona, but more her most impressive daughter, Scythia, who’s leadership gives the freedom loving horse folk of the Gaellic plain a name, an identity, and a mother; Loki the miner and technical genius who’s folk live under the mountains, and many more.
In the Disputed Lands life is cheap. Warlords carve out kingdoms among the fortified city states of the broken and war torn landscape in a section of the northern continent east of the Safron River that drains much of the Great Gaellic plain, north of Scotia and the fortified wall that splits off the Scots Highlands from the rest, west of the Great Sea that has become dominated by the Fomor, and South of the lands of the Sinoese and most notably the Darklings. Several stories will be set or will touch this volitile region. Among them are “Icarus Flight”, “Kitsuniko”, “Led from the Dark or the Blind Deaf Mute and the Idiot” (a story about overcoming disability, frustrated revenge, and simple peace), “Fitch in His Majesties Service”
All these ideas are exciting possibilities, but I am laboring without a lot of time to bring them to fruition. Still, I press on and am currently hoping to push through and finish a shorter tale about the Ribbonwood that involves the main Christianizing agency in Tir na Nua, the Biblious Monastries and monasticism in general that was a major force in insular Ireland and had its impact in the west.
I hope you will enjoy my world of Tir na Nua in all its many shapes through the ages that it exists.