The Voidstdier Saga is a sweeping epic ranging from Earth and the Moon to Mars, the Asteroid Belt, the moons of Saturn and beyond.
Billions of humans live and work on these scattered worlds and stations. They speak a variety of languages.
These are the key, primary tongues of The Voidstrider Saga.
Anglic – derived from American English, common on Earth and parts of the Belt. Would be largely recognizable by an American English speaker of the 21st century, although some words would be unfamiliar and pronunciations will have changed somewhat.
Lingwa – derived from Spanish and Portuguese with Chinese, Arabic, English, and German influence; the common tongue on Mars. A slight majority of the original Martian settlers came from South America, and brought their native dialects with them.
Guanhwa – “high Martian,” the official Martian language; rarely used except for profanity. Although Guanhwa is primarily descended from modern Chinese, it was never meant to be Chinese. In crafting the Guanhwa words and phrases that appear in the story, I have used modern Chinese. It’s worth pointing out that I speak exactly zero Chinese, and my usage of these words and phrases is probably horribly wrong. And I’m OK with that, because they are used only as an approximation of a fictitious language that might evolve from modern Chinese in about 400 years. *For some common Guanhwa prhases and their English approximations, see below.
Interslavic (Меджусловјански) – common in the Belt and parts of Earth, Interslavic is descended from a modern tongue of the same name.
Unish – a supposedly universal constructed language, Unish is most common in the outer Belt stations such as Pallas, Hermione, and Hygiea. It was designed for simplicity and short words. Its grammar is also simple. Unish is the language spoken by Nadezhda Khatami in Revolt on Vesta. “Wat de want wid mi?” translates as “What do you want with me.” Slightly less obvious is “Was de nas-il wid dats,” which translates as “What are you going to do with those?”
Some Common Guanhwa Words and Phrases (including High Martian Profanity)
Gan bei – “cheers”
Zhu ni haoyun – “good luck”
Bie guan wo – “begone,” “leave me alone”
Pi-yan – “asshole”
Fant’ong – roughly “goddamn”
Qu ni – “shut (the fuck) up” (lit. “To your mother”)
Gan ni ma – “fuck your mother”
Bai chi – “idiot”
Wo kao – exclamation of surprise or amazement, sort of “fuck me!”
Chang fu – “bitch”
Biaozi – “whore”
Pi jing – a derogatory term referring to sexual preference
Ni bu shi ren – “you’re not human”
gunkai – “go to hell”
Chi si – “eat shit”
Fang pi – “bullshit”/”nonsense”
Na shang’ye wan – “that business is finished”