Yeah, but I also want a feel like they didn't plan the transphonation (because they didn't, in the story). I want to look like it has structure but at the same time look like it wasn't made to be pronounced by anybody. (Because in the story, it wasn't) -------------------------------------------- On Thu, 2/5/15, Logan Kearsley <[log in to unmask]> wrote: Subject: Re: More Visual Alien Language (The version I sent on purpose this time) To: [log in to unmask] Received: Thursday, February 5, 2015, 5:46 PM On 5 February 2015 at 15:27, Kalem Tysick <[log in to unmask]> wrote: > In this alien invasion story I am writing the aliens come mainly to "culture" Earth and bring them to worshipping their god. (They are missionaries to Earth). Part of their religion teaches that all languages (apart from their own) were created by their devil character. Therefore it follows, that to be saved, one must adopt their language. Their own language comprises of combinations of skin colour and texture changes. But, seeing as humans cannot change their skin's colour and texture (at least not rapidly or to match those of the aliens), the aliens devise an alternative system. Assuming the majority of humans understand Latin letters, they assign each of the letters in their colour-texture alphabet a corresponding letter from various Latin-derived alphabets (as well as one Cyrillic letter, which they put in by mistake). > This is the alphabet I have decided that they come up with: > A H Þ Ç Z S Æ Ú B I Ð Œ Y R Á Ñ À C J Č DZ Ï D Q Ł ∀ Ê W K Ø Ò E P ß Å Ù V L È Я Ǎ Ö F O Ô U M G T N É Ì X > > > Later in the story I plan to have a rival group of the same species with a similar, but different religion and a different language arrive on Earth and start a Holy War on our planet. (Maybe even involving human converts in the battles). They too have this 'you must learn our language to be saved' idea. So they copy the idea of the first group and make their own alphabet. > It looks like this: > A J K T U Á Č É DZ À Ǎ B I L S V Ð Ł Ç ∀ Ï Ì C H M R W Æ ß Ú Ø Ê & D G N Q X Þ È Œ Å Ò E F O P Y Z Ô Ñ Ж Ù > > Here are the original alphabets and the corresponding patterns, as well as their numerals and some words for numbers: > https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B61Hd7qQG9rBSWQydmxKQ08yYVE > I realize of course that the patterns are over-simplified, but I won't have my character focus too much on the original language as much as the humanized version which he will be forced to speak. He will be forced to learn to understand the aliens' colour-texture version, but I would rather keep that bit as simple as an entirely visual language built from the ground up can be. > I'm still sure how I should develop a complete-enough-for-the-purposes-of-the-story lexicon for a language such as this. Thoughts? If you presume that the transliteration / transphonation that they / you derived to allow humans to speak it is reasonably precise and accurate (that is, close to a one-to-one mapping to graphemes / coloremes? in the alien language), it seems to me like you have the problem solved: develop the lexicon the same way you would for any other human-speakable conlang, using your transliteration schemes. Then back-port to the alien color-texture modality later, if necessary. -l.