The First Internet Resources I Found

For a few years, my conlanging stumbled around in a big dark room. The only thing that kept me going on my conlang were a Middle Earth Encyclopedia book I had, that got me excited about language creating whenever I leafed through it and looked at the interesting names Tolkien had created for various things through out Middle Earth. Occasionally I would look up stuff on other languages, to get ideas for stuff I might integrate into my language, but it wasn't much help.

The first resources I found that started me going in any direction some sort of a semblance of a direction, were the Ardalambion and Langmaker websites. I was able to learn a great deal about Quenya, Sindarin, and Tolkien's other languages, and I was able to start playing around with creating words out of sounds using the langmaker word generator. Here is an online version to play with.

Something that I loved and really got me moving in the right directions, were these newsletters I found on langmaker.com. Jeffrey Henning's writings about having a "proto language" that your actual language grows out of; this sounded very interesting. I decided relatively quickly that with my language, in this world I was going to create, that there would be no Tower of Babel, that everyone spoke the same language or an accented form or dialect of the same language. The proto-language would basically be the language, some of them believed, that was taught to the first man and woman on their world. The idea excited me because I could already envision how the language would change over centuries, and then revert, and how there would be language purists, and others that didn't give a care, and there might be a language and culture institute, like they have in France, etc, etc.

Thats all for now. Check out the resources I cited; they were helpful to me, they might be helpful to you! Feel free to comment and share your conlanging experiences. :D

2 comments:

baalak said...

One of the first online resources I discovered was a website discussing Tolkien's Dark Speech, Glaubuurz. I was fascinated by the amount of effort the community had put into it, and disappointed that the professor never worked on or cared for this misfit tongue.

As I got to reading more, I discovered that people were creating their own dialects of the language, and I wanted to do that, too. I had my own ideas as to what the language could be used for, and modified some things and added some others until I had a basic framework for what I wanted. It's basically sat there ever since, cold and empty, as I've moved to other projects. Abandoned, though perhaps only for now.

The process taught me a lot, however, and I learned from my plethora of mistakes. I've carried my hard-fought knowledge on to other projects.

- Baalak Nalzar-aung.

baalak said...

A proto-language. That is my goal now, as well.

My greatest hurdle to conlanging has always been the lexicon. I can create words, but assigning them meaning is a process which has escaped me utterly. I hope I've found a way to rectify that, and it is a proto-tongue.

I have thought that if I could create the roots of a tongue, that the stem and leaves would follow. But what words deserve to be roots?

I plan to create a neolithic language, simple in construction and use, which can be the mother of all the languages of my world. Each language it spawns can borrow words from its mother and assign them root status. Each language which is derived in this way can share some roots with others, while having other roots which only they've adopted, making the relation there, and deeply ingrained, but at the same time difficult to see.

The words and concepts in the proto-language can be very simple, one and two syllable words, which convey concepts which a neolithic people would need to discuss, while skipping over entirely the more complex and difficult concepts which a modern language would undoubtedly utilize.

Part of the problem I'm facing, though, is the challenge of making a language which is primitive, and yet fully functional. How do you compare how primitive or advanced a language is? No one would like their tongue being called primitive, so I fear that discussing this could be stepping into a minefield. I've yet to truely come up with a way to make a primitive language, besides restricting the subject matter to primitive concepts, which is insufficient to me.

- Baalak Nalzar-aung.