Monthly Archives: May 2013

Publishing update

Here is the latest update on the Silent Blade Chronicles.
We are now in the process of having book two “The Tomb of Sharakir” put into paperback format, and hopefully this will be available to buy on-line very soon.
Book three “Deathbane” is now being proofread, and as soon as “The Tomb of Sharakir” is out in paperback we shall have it out on kindle format for you all. My editor will be sending me… a sample of the cover for “Deathbane” very soon, and once i have it I will post it for you to see, so you will all know what you are looking for.
Thank you to all my friends and fans who have been awaiting the third instalment, for being so patient… but remember, good things come to those who wait. So share this amongst your friends and pass the word along.

Happy reading everyone

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A few points on research

 

Many people would think that writing High Fantasy would not require research… that it is all just made up; invented, if you like.
But this is not the case…!
High Fantasy has a great world-wide following, and because of this it is actually more important to get the facts right than in any other genre.
So what does this actually mean?
… Well, there are certain intrinsic values embedded within the High Fantasy genre which must always be adhered to, e.g: good v evil, mythical creatures, magic, world-building, and several other significant matters.
So why are these things important?
The answer is simple. There are many fans of High Fantasy out there who would baulk at the idea of a badly researched tale.
Mythical creatures, for example, must seem to appear real. This means that the author must be on familiar terms with such things as: the fae folk, trolls, spirits, and of course dragons. It would be no use writing about a great drake without first knowing how they would move, eat, hunt, and even speak. All of this means reading and absorbing the subject matter ( writen by so many others over the years ) then puting your own unique spin on it
Then we come to world-building.
Unlike normal fiction which is predominately based on earth, most High Fantasy tales are acted out on some imaginary world. Once again this must have a “real” feel about it. Towns and cities must have a reasonable population, with proper marketing and trade. The construction of buildings must be consistant with available local materials, eg: if there are huge forests about then most houses would be of a wooden construction. Depending on the technical advancement of the world they may have used bricks and have proper slate on the roofs instead of thatch. So here it is wise to work out the equivolent era on earth and research the types of buildings that were around at that time. Distances between towns, and even diferent realms, must be worked out, along with a road/track network, as it will become apparent very quickly that your characters will be travelling to these places. Travelling times are also important; whether by foot, on horseback, or on a winged horse, which means you will need to know how easy each route will be, and if there are any obsticles that might add a day or two on to the journey.
And finally i come to the magic.
High Fantasy is usually full of magic users of some kind, whether they be the ubiquitous wizard, or a shaman, or a druid. But again, no matter what kind of magic is used it is important to do some research to make sure that what you write is going to sound as if it can really happen.
And that, of course, is the real trick with High Fantasy… making it seem real ! ! !

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Why do we write

Many people ask me how I became an author.

The answer to this is not as simple as a lot of people might think. To begin with it is not something that you instantly decide to be when you leave school ( at least this applies to most of the authors I know ). Instead writing comes to people over a period of time. For many it may be the creation of a few poems, or an essay on a praticular subject that they feel passionate about. these small things may lie around in a drawer or in an unopened box for many years, before the writer once again comes upon them. Of course, I always believe that age and life-experiences help in the creative process, and this could be why many of todays authors look at these previous small works and decide to expand on them.

But there must also be a deep, heart-felt passion towards writing before anyone can truly call themselves an author. To spill your emotions onto a page, knowing the entire literary world could concievably  will read it, and possibly even critisise the work, means the need for a certain kind of bravery, too.

So, becoming an author means many things to many people. But most of all it means commitment to your own heart, and to your emotions and beliefs.

Happy reading everyone

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The blurb for book 2

After their success in recapturing the stolen Cloak of Etherical Light, the Silent Blade return to Mount Oragil for a well earned rest, but after a few months of respite they soon become bored, and long for adventure. And they do not have long to wait. When a fishing boat discovers two unconscious men drifting far out to sea in an open sailing boat they rush to save them. The Captain discovers one of the men is carrying something he recognises from a description his brother once gave him. Realising the importance of his find the Captain returns to port and promptly has his brother take the find to Mount Oragil. The finding of this small, bejewelled pendant will trigger a search for the fabled, long lost Tomb of Sharakir. But as the Silent Blade struggle to return the pendant to its original home, a dark and ancient prophesy begins to unravel. Old wounds will be re-opened; ancient secrets will be revealed, and the hearts of those involved may never be the same. This time the forces of evil mean business!

For those of you wishing to view the books, please click on the links at the top of the page.

Happy reading everyone

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The blurb for book 1

When an ancient symbol of power is stolen from the wizards’ citadel, which stands atop Mount Oragil, a timid teaching wizard named Amvaar is sent to retrieve it. Despite strict orders from the Grand Master of his order to keep his quest a secret Amvaar enlists the help of three people. But as the four new friends venture onwards, they gradually discover that horrifying events from eight hundred years earlier, are about to unfold once again. They also discover that fate has brought them together for a special purpose. Only working together, as The Silent Blade, can the four hope to defeat a terrifying foe, and hopefully save the world.

This is the begining of an epic journey, telling how four friends come together to fight against an evil that could potentialy destroy their world.

And if you want to take a look at the books, please click on the link at the top of the page.

Happy reading everyone

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The author’s desk

Where would we be without authors? The answer, of course, is “Nowhere”, for without authors we would have nothing to read.

But let us now take a look at a typical author.

An author will use many tools in his trade: computers, paper, pens, and in some cases a hammer, chissel and slab of stone. But no matter what tools he uses in his daily toil, there is one thing that is common to all, and that is the Desk.

Every author has one, and these sacred items will  be found in many shapes and forms. As far back as time will allow, authors have found the need for a flat surface on which to work. These “Desks” are always cluttered with writing tools, along with piles of paper, papyrus, or stone slabs ( depending on which era you belong ). There will also be found many strange items, in the form of good luck charms. These can be anything the Author likes, or believes in and can range from such divers items as: toy ducks, plastic dragons, small stones, and even in one case a “mystical toy helicopter” ( although why this was regarded as being mystical i do not know ).

As I have already mentioned, these “Desks” are very sacred to the Author, and must never be defiled by anyone. This includes the following few simple rules.

1: Do not move anything on the “Desk” as this will confuse the Author.

2: Do not attempt to clean the “Desk”, as this will not only confuse the author, but will create anger.

3: Do not draw little stick figures in the dust. This is not only unproductive, but also rather silly.

4: Never empty the waste bin underneath the “Desk”, as this is where the Author keeps his best work ( once he realises that is where he put it ).

5: If you find the “Desk unattended for any reason, do not sit at the keyboard and have a go at finishing the last sentence on the screen. The resulting family feud is not worth the bother.

6: Whatever you do… DO NOT unplug the computer to use the hoover. The screen may only be in sleep mode, and you may inadvertantly scrub many hours of hard work on the last two sentences ( these can never be replaced, as the Author will have forgoten what he wrote ).

7: And finally, if you do happen to accidently do any of the above, my advice to you is to pack your belongings immediately, and as quickly as you can and book yourself on the next flight out of the country. Do not attempt to return till you have seen the Author’s obituary posted in the local paper, and even then it will be important to remain in disguis as his family will remember you.

And so, always remember that throughout history the humble Author has sat at a “Desk”, quietly working away on his latest piece of work, for your enjoyment.

Happy reading everyone

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Back to the writing

So, even at the begining of the fourth book i find myself having to tie in various small details from the previous books. This, of course, will be where the reader will get that “Oh, so that’s why ! ” momment. So for those of you who perhaps thought that parts of the first three books were a bit slow, or that i had just slipped incidental bits in to bulk it out, you are about to find that these small things really do tie in to the story…. Remember, the Chronicles are one large epic tale, s[plit into five books to make for easier reading.

Happy reading everyone

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