Fifteen credits

At three credits per class, fifteen credits is five classes.  Twelve is considered full-time, so fifteen is a heavy load, but I usually did fifteen to eighteen.  When I was taking Japanese, that was a four-credit class, so I was taking 16 or 19 credits, and at 19 I needed an override.  Ah, college…

In those days, I was all study, little play.  for a while, I even took karate at the community college.  A little manga or anime when I was done studying.  Unless I was taking a light load at the CC, I probably didn’t have time for gaming. Work, work work, read a novel.  I was striving for straight As, or as close as I could get to it, and I had some challenging classes. 

Having gotten my master’s degree, the thought of going back to college makes me get glassy-eyed.  My master’s program was excruciating; I’m glad I earned it, but I do not want to walk those fiery coals again.  I graduated with high honors, and I am proud of that, but I have so much else going on in my life, I don’t think I have it in me to go back to school full time.  

Having said all that, there is one thing I miss: linguistics.  I absolutely adore studying foreign languages.  By the time I transferred to the university that I graduated from, I had taken French throughout high school, German and Latin 101, and first year Japanese (i.e. 102 & 102). Somewhere along the way I took Spanish 101. My counselor told be that if I did not complete second year of something. he would hunt me down! I love that I love languages enough that I have to be threatened with that.  Anyway, It was simple to take the logical route and complete my second year of Japanese.

With my major in Anthropology, I had too many course requirements to take other languages or advanced Japanese and also graduate when I wanted to, and that’s really the only thing I regret.  If I went back to college now, it would be to study any language I could get my hands on.  I dabble in my free time, a little Korean, a touch of Burmese… I at least want to listen to them. 

The thing with studying Anthropology and linguistics, besides learning the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA), is that you realize just how limited your literacy is.  These are just some of the languages that you cannot read if you are monolingual or just focus on Western Languages:

Japanese, Chinese, Thai, Korean, Cherokee, Cyrillic, Greek, Myanmar (Burmese), Georgian, Hebrew, Arabic, Greek, Hindi, Tibetan, Armenian, and Mongolian.  Check out to find more, although they are not by far all-encompassing.  Ethnologue might also be useful to you. 

I keep thinking to myself, how can I be literate If I only the sound of maybe a tenth of the world’s writing systems?  Even the ones that use the Latin alphabet take plenty of learning–especially Gaelic.  That one’s sounds match the letters waaaay differently than English does, and English is inconsistent enough on its own.  Pick me up and drop me in another country, and there’s less than a 50/50 chance that I can read anything.  It would be an interesting experience, just to see what illiterate people go through. 

Learning Klingon is a joke I tell people.  I am definitely a Trekkie and I am tempted to actually learn it, but I have so much else going on.  Still, it shows how much I love languages.  IF you’ve seen my sketch of Shu-Giri (check back to a couple weeks ago), you’ve notice that I am *creating* one for my novels.  I have an alphabet for Elvan, and it’s fairly similar to English in the sense that the consonants and vowels are separate characters.  Did you know there are language where a consonant carries an inherent vowel with it?  Those are called syllabraries.  Some of them have symbols or diacritics that change the sound.  I don’t think I’ll make a syllabary, but I certainly could.  Anyhow, I also have rudimentary alphabets for Draconic, Fae and Starr.  Draconic looks like claw marks, so it’s almost similar to cuneiform.  Dae is whimsical and curvy. and Starr is going to end up similar to Tibetan and Hindi, where the shapes hang from a bar. 

I will probably go back to college to get my PhD someday, but I don’t know in what.  There are so many possibilities! That will be in the distant future,when I am old and other things have settled down.  For now, I am going to scurry around and wok on getting Legends of Lorata published!

About Legends of Lorata

Eleanor Willow is the author of the high fantasy series Legends of Lorata, which takes place on a medieval-style world filled with elves, dragons, and faeries. There is also a fourth race, one that is rare and magical: the angelic Starr. Lorata is a distant planet watched over by four deities: good, evil, elemental, and celestial-- and there are plenty of legends about them all! One of the most important ones is the prophecy of Jenh's champion, Loracaz, who is promised to return to the realm whenever evil threatens to take hold. There are currently three books completed, and the first one can be read online. Book four is currently being written, and a fifth will most likely be in the future.
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