Monday, July 23, 2012

Thesis Inspiration Part 2--"Quest for Camelot"

If you attempted to click on a link in any of my previous posts, they did not work. This has been fixed. Blogger and I had a minor dispute over proper html format. I won, and Blogger is now awaiting trial. So, if you go back and click on stuff, it will take you there now. Lol.

Okay, back to our regularly scheduled program. This Monday is week 2 of thesis inspiration. Last Monday, today, and next Monday are dedicated to the three children’s movies that inspired my thesis novel for Seton Hill—Disney’s “Mulan,” “Quest for Camelot,” and “The Swan Princess.”

So, without further a due—“Quest for Camelot.”
Based in Arthurian Legend, “Quest for Camelot” tells the story of Kayley—daughter of a Knight of the Round Table—and her dream to become a knight. Her world is turned up-side-down with the death of her father at the wicked Sir Ruber’s hand. Ten years later, Kayley’s world is further turned to chaos by the theft of Excalibur—King Arthur’s famed sword—and the arrival of Ruber at her home. Kayley escapes Ruber’s watchful eye and flees to the Forbidden Forest where Excalibur has been lost. There, she meets Garrett—a blind hermit who is as good a fighter as any knight—Devon and Cornwall—two heads of a dragon that refuse to get along—and Aiden—a silver-winged falcon. With the help of her new companions, she finds Excalibur and returns it to Camelot only to be intercepted by Ruber. With Garrett’s help, Kayley defeats Ruber and saves Camelot. She is knighted by King Arthur and finds herself in possession of everything she’s ever wanted—knighthood and Garrett.
That’s a lot. I did say last week that “Quest for Camelot” had the largest impact on my thesis. I wasn’t kidding.

Some similar themes between “Quest for Camelot” and “Mulan” in terms of my thesis. A form of the military figures prominently in both. Jayleen—my protagonist—desires nothing more than to be admitted into the Royal Guard—thirty elite soldiers charged with the protection of the royal family. Like King Arthur’s knights, the members of the guard ride on horseback and are formidable warriors. I can’t say that the idea of the Royal Guard came directly from the knights, but the Round Table certainly had a hand.

Jayleen herself—I originally gave Jayleen auburn hair (similar to Kayley’s). Then, my mentor pointed out that the red-headed heroine was a bit overdone. I privately fumed at this. It wasn’t true. I mean, the red-headed heroines that I can think of are only Kayley, Kahlan (“Sword of Truth” series by Terry Goodkind), Ariel (“The Little Mermaid”), Thumbelina, Merida (“Brave”), Ce’Nedra (“The Belgariad” by David Eddings), and Anastasia (from the 20th Century Fox animated feature). Err, all right—maybe it was overdone. So, I relented and made Jayleen’s hair sable brown. It actually fits her better.

That said, I did base a lot of Jayleen off of Kayley. Jayleen looks up to her father—general of the army and captain of the Royal Guard. Jayleen also finds herself in a situation where she reluctantly, at least initially, has to work with a member of the opposite gender. In her case, though, there are two members of the opposite gender—Crown Prince Kylander and, in different ways, her brother—Julian.

Okay, Jayleen—you’re a spotlight hoarder. Step aside so I can talk about the overall impact of the movie on my thesis. The idea of Camelot—the powerful kingdom—had an impact as well. It’s in no way based on Camelot, other than being a powerful kingdom, but that’s where the idea of Edalya came from.

Most important, at least to me, I will now talk about the romance. Is there any, yes. Do Jayleen and the Prince end up together—not saying. What I will say is that, regardless of whether they do or not, they are given real reasons to grow together. What does this mean? As I say in my post about “Tangled,” the romantic couple is given a chance to get to know one another and fall in love for the right reasons. Kayley and Garrett do this as well. They fight, run, and struggle their way through the Forbidden Forest until Ruber wounds Garrett. In that moment, Kayley and Garrett realize they’re in love. Corny, maybe, but it wasn’t love at first sight, and it wasn’t “I haven’t even really looked at you but let’s get married.” It’s real.

All righty, I think that just about wraps it up. Next week will conclude the Thesis Three (I just made that up, and it’s catchy) sequence with “The Swan Princess.” And, next Friday—could it be? Spoilers?

See you out of the box,

P.S. Check out my duet (thanks to my duet partner) of “Looking Through Your Eyes” from “Quest for Camelot. I’m working at getting “On My Father’s Wings” up as well, but life keeps happening. Stay tuned.


  1. Quest for Camelot is one of my favorites movies ever. Sadly, not many people know about it. I even know all the songs in the Spanish version!

    Haha The red-headed heroine is overdone yet I wrote my thesis heroine knowing this and purposely ignoring it. She's a half-fey and the faeries in my story have odd colored hair. To "change it up" a bit instead of calling it red hair, its berry-red hair (berry-red...very red, get it? lol). That in turn spawned the idea of using nature names when describing colors in faery clothing and hair (lime-green, ocean-blue, pumpking-yellow, etc)

  2. I know, right? No one knows about that movie, and I love it sooo much.

    Love the colors thing, and it makes a lot of sense. It also really defines your world--always a plus. :)