I should be writing an article right now. But since I have literally no motivation to do that, I figured I'd write a new blog post. There was actually some interest about my novel on the MC Forums the other day, so I thought I'd do some novel-related rambling.
So, there was this really neat traveling exhibit that was near my town not too long ago called Pterosaurs: Flight in the Age of Dinosaurs (unfortunately no photos were allowed). I got my boyfriend to take me to go see it and holy cow, was it incredible. The exhibit was set up as winding path that you had to follow, and around every corner there was a new surprise. There were so many beautiful fossils and life-size sculptures to see. I was particularly happy to see pterodaustro, nemicolopterus, and jeholopterus featured there, because I plan to include them in the "Aviary" of my novel. There was also this "pilot a pterosaur" game where it tracked your arm movements and matched them to the pterosaur's wings so you could "fly" it. It was very fun.
But what really took my breath away about the whole exhibit was the life-size quetzalcoatlus sculpture. Sure, I have seen quetzalcoatlus fossils before, but you can never imagine how massive it really is until they put muscle and skin onto that skeleton and hang it a few feet above your head. When I rounded the corner of the path and suddenly found the incredible large beast suspended above me, I couldn't look away. Its jaws were longer than my body. Its wingspan was impossible wide. It was huge. It was bigger than I had ever expected. It was amazing.
It was that moment, standing there staring at this monstruous pterosaur, that I finally made a decision about my novel. Often, in man-vs-beast stories, one animal proves to be a bigger danger to man than the rest. Of course in Jurassic Park, this animal is the velociraptor. But I had been wanting something more original and intimidating. I liked the idea of quetzalcoatlus because it was terror from the skies. It seemed like such a cool idea. I had a scene all planned out; I'll have people walking through tall, prehistoric grasses and all of a sudden something soars overhead and blocks out the sun for a moment, and there's a big thud as something lands. They can hear it moving toward them, but don't know what it is. Then, all of a sudden, silhouetted by the sun, the massive head and neck of the quetzelcoatlus comes into view above the grasses, peering down on them hungrily with its big, round eyes. When I finally saw that quetzalcoatlus sculpture, I knew I had to do this. The quetzalcoatlus had to be my monster.
Of course, "monster" isn't the correct term. It's a wild animal, just looking for its next meal. It isn't this bloodthirsty creature that attacks humans for no reason like the JP velociraptors. Its just incredibly dangerous and shockingly intimidating, and will make for a great final obstacle for my characters.
So yeah, that about sums up this blog post. If anyone is curious about anything or just wants to chat, feel free to leave a comment.