In my latest fantasy release, Children of Yden, the Earth-born children of Yden’s wizards return to the magical planet in order to learn magic. Two such wizards are Ian and Ilene, a brother and sister from Scotland. I enjoy writing Irish and Scottish characters because Scotland and Ireland are where a great many of my forebears came from. Unfortunately, that was many, many generations ago. So how can an American author write authentic Irish, Scottish, or British accents and slang without a native speaker around?
Consult a robot.
Aye, there’s no need to go further than Whoohoo! It’s an online translator that will take your dialogue and spit out Irish, Scottish, Cockney, and Jolly Well Spoken translations, to name a few.
For example, type in:
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
(From the Gettysburg Address, Abraham Lincoln)
According to Whoohoo, a Scotsman might say it differently:
Fower scair an’ seven years ago uir faithers brooght forth oan thes continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, an’ dedicated tae th’ proposition ‘at aw men ur created equal.
Good morning! How are you today?
Whoohoo Scottie translator would translate thusly:
Guid morn! Fit loch the-day?
And then, the ever popular:
What sayest thou to that, Mr. Scott?
Haud yer weesht!
Just for fun, I checked out the Jolly Well Spoken:
Do you want to come over and hang out?
The queen would say it this way (according to Whoohoo):
Doh you, one’s old bean, fancy to come ovah and hang out? Goodness me!
Try it for yourself. It’s fun. Or as the Irish might say, “Try it for yerself. ‘Tis craic.”
~ S.G. Rogers
The Earth-born children of Yden are returning home, and it’s time to choose sides. The Fox Clan is building an army, but its motives and goals are unclear. As Jon begins his magical training, a reckless skirmish with Guinn of the Fox Clan has unforeseen repercussions. Not only has Jon placed himself in danger, but nobody around him is safe. When Jon discovers Guinn is looking for a secret weapon, a magical artifact called the Portal Key, he vows to find it first. Jon does not yet realize the Fox Clan’s most potent weapon in its quest for power may be his heart.
The apprentices were eating dinner when Jon finally transported to Dragon Isle an hour later. Although Ronny had also traveled to Earth to go shopping that weekend, two more apprentices had joined the group — Eagle Clan siblings from Scotland.
“Aye, Aeltin came nosin’ around to offer me a spot with the Fox Clan, but Ah turned him doon flat,” Ian said, in response to Jon’s question. “Ah didnae wish to leave ma poor wee sister defenseless in the world. She’d be lost without me.”
“Stuff it, Ian,” Ilene said, from the other end of the table.
When Jon entered the bungalow at bedtime, Ian’s lusty Scottish brogue was belting a lively folk tune from the shower. Max and Jon shared a laugh.
“I should warn you, Ian’s fond of practical jokes,” Max said.
“I’ll keep my eyes peeled.”
Jon threw himself onto his hammock… and promptly bolted out. Underneath his blanket were a bunch of prickly pinecones. Max howled with laughter.
“Funny,” Jon said.
Ian emerged from his shower into a darkened bungalow, his skin still glowing from the heat of the warm water. He padded over to jump into his hammock, but gasped when he landed in a pile of dripping snow.
“Which one o’ ye louts did this!”
A pinecone came sailing out of the dark and hit him in the chest.
“Och, come on, laddie. T’was a wee welcome joke.”
“Ah dinna ken enough magic to remove the snaw, Jon.”
“Don’t worry. It’ll be gone by morning.”
Jon turned over, a smile on his face. I bet I won’t have to worry about anything finding its way into my hammock again.
Children of Yden (Sequel to The Last Great Wizard of Yden)
Available now for the Kindle at Amazon, for the Nook at BN.com and in all e-formats at Astraea Press.