Herman Miller wrote: > I imagine that languages created for fantasy novels have a number of > constraints that we ordinarily don't take into consideration in > artlangs. Most obviously, they should avoid sounds that English > speakers have trouble with, and try to spell things in a way that > won't confuse English speakers too badly. Tolkien might have been able > to get away with spelling /k/ as "c", but how many of his readers got > it wrong on the first reading? > Oddly enough, I apply exactly those constraints at least some of the time. I've got fantasies about persuading a few of my less linguistically-inclined friends to 'play along at home' (i.e. learn some of the language du jour), so I sometimes try to make various sketches anglophone-friendly from the start. (I do a lot of conlang doodling, some of which ends up being worked into my more developed projects, and a lot of which gets shoved into drawers.) So far, my persuasion hasn't worked out, but I am sure it will, right after I win the lottery. > Probably more useful for conlangers would be a "Create a World > Clinic", with tips for putting together a consistent background for > the speakers of your language. Where are you likely to find mountains, > and what effect do they have on the local climate? What does it take > to run a civilization of a given size? How does the technology > develop? At the very least, before giving your language a dozen words > for "snow", you should have some idea whether snow is likely to be > found in the climate where your speakers live. > That would be an amazingly useful book for me! I'd jump at the chance to have a hard copy of something that would help me sort out and firm up the vague notions I have about the imaginary places my languages come from. Mia.