Tuesday, 31 December 2013


Name: Tyron
Story: The Shadow Prince
Status: Lord

When I split The Rogue King into its current saga, I wanted to show a little more of the academy. Especially some of the interactions that had otherwise only been hinted at and - being cocky, short-tempered and skilled with a blade - it was only natural to pair Tyron up against my poor Main Character in a duel.
No need to worry though, it was in the academy. Totally non-fatal ... at least, it's meant to be. Not sure if anyone actually told Tyron this.

I actually managed to hit this image on the first go.

Tuesday, 24 December 2013


Name: Farris
Story: Dark One’s Mistress
Status: Count of Endlight

Although Clara — my Main Character — sees him differently, I see him as sharp and perceptive, yet still a bit of a rogue because ... well, does anyone need a reason to be a bit of a rogue? ^_^
I found it rather fun writing this seventy-something year old character (I asked him for his true age, honest, but he wouldn't tell me), so much so that he kept creeping back into the sequel.

I was trying for old and strong here. I think it came out rather well.

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Cover Reveal - Cutlass

*gasp* It's getting closer...

Publication Date: April 23, 2014
Category: Young Adult
Genre: Fantasy

Pirates ... kidnapping ... magic ...
what's not to like?
Notorious pirate Barren Reed has one thing on his mind: Revenge against the man who killed his father. So kidnapping his enemy's fiancé seems a perfect plan…until he actually does it. 

Larkin Lee is more than a pretty face and fiancé to a powerful man. Her fierce personality is enough to make any pirate want to push her overboard. 

But when the King of the Orient comes to Barren with a task—to find the Bloodstone, a powerful gem thought only to exist in legend, Barren sees another opportunity to destroy his enemy. Together, Barren, Larkin and a crew of pirates set off to find the stone, only to discover it caused the death of Barren’s own mother and Larkin’s, too. As his strongest allies turn into his greatest enemies, and the life of the girl he kidnapped becomes more important than he ever dreamed, Barren’s quest for revenge becomes a fight to save the Orient.

Stalker Links:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, 17 December 2013


Name: Gloric
Story: The Shadow Prince
Status: Healer

In what seems to be a recurring tradition for The Rogue King Saga, Gloric appeared in a recently added chapter, making him a scene character and I like to have a little bit of fun designing them.
Originally, he was going to be of a lesser represented species, mainly because of a glut in certain species, but his job clashed with my in-world limitations (I do so hate it when that happens). Having illegal healers is all well and good ... I just don't see how he'd manage to become a teacher in a prestigious school if he was one of them. So he's a level down from the top species in my OMG-they're-everywhere scale.

Oddly enough, the glass is the favourite part of this picture. So much shiny...

Friday, 13 December 2013

Fighting for the Edge Blog Tour

fighting for the Edge tour

Fighting for the Edge CoverFighting for the Edge Two friends. Two dreams. One night that changes everything… Ice dancer Aubrey London scoffs at romance. She’s focused on winning a medal at the upcoming Olympics and uses that as her excuse to avoid serious relationships. But when she and longtime friend Chris Grayden are thrown together by unforeseen circumstances, Aubrey finds herself questioning everything she's ever known about love, complicating her life both on and off the ice. Pairs skater Emily Petrov embraces romance. She and her husband Sergei still act like honeymooners two years after their wedding. As Emily’s coach, Sergei provides constant support while she prepares to challenge for gold at the Olympics. But Sergei’s support might not be enough to help Emily overcome the one challenge she never saw coming. With the Games only weeks away, Emily and Aubrey are on the verge of realizing their dreams. But one snowy, stormy night sets in motion a series of events that will test them in ways they never imagined, giving them more to fight for than Olympic medals.  

Praise for Fighting for the Edge "Emily and Aubrey's final challenge is Jennifer Comeaux's greatest victory. Both touching and suspenseful, Fighting for the Edge is a game changer that will have fans of the series giving both the characters and the author a standing ovation once they've turned the last page. If I could pass out medals, Jennifer would earn gold for writing my favorite romance of all time." - Jenna at Jenna Does Books "Jennifer Comeaux puts you in the action, makes you smell the ice and hear the roar of the crowd during the nail-biting competitions, and she's a master at creating first love jitters in your stomach from the steamy scenes that are so hot without being explicit." - Christina Jean Michaels, author of Epiphany  

Life on the Edge (Book 1) Nineteen-year-old Emily is new to pairs skating, but she and her partner Chris have a big dream–to be the first American team to win Olympic gold. Their young coach Sergei, who left Russia after a mysterious end to his skating career, believes they can break through and make history. Emily and Chris are on track to be top contenders at the 2002 Winter Games. But when forbidden feelings spark between Emily and Sergei, broken trust and an unexpected enemy threaten to derail Emily’s dreams of gold.

Edge of the Past (Book 2) Summary: Emily's skating career and personal life have never been more golden. She and her partner Chris have won every competition they've entered this season, and she's found the man of her dreams in her coach Sergei. But when one of the biggest competitions of the year takes Emily and Sergei to Russia, Sergei's past explodes into the present and makes Emily doubt everything in their future.  

Author Bio
Jennifer Comeaux is a tax accountant by day, writer by night. There aren't any ice rinks near her home in south Louisiana, but she's a diehard figure skating fan and loves to write stories of romance set in the world of competitive skating. One of her favorite pastimes is travelling to competitions, where she can experience all the glitz and drama that inspire her writing.
When not working or writing, she is an avid follower of the sport of figure skating, travelling to competitions around the country. Those experiences allow her to see another side of the sport and serve as an inspiration for her writing. Jennifer is blessed with a wonderful family and many friends who have encouraged her to pursue her dream of being a published author.

Tour Giveaway
$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 12/19/13
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

Tuesday, 10 December 2013


So, my introducing posts took a little hiatus during November. But it's back!


Name: Xinn & Linn
Story: Dragon
Status: Ancients

The shell-brothers. Unlike a large portion of the Dragon 'cast' who came from the original story whether as they stood or merged with other characters, these two were brand new additions.
These guys got shoved to the background more and more throughout the edits. As it stands, their names are mentioned once. Maybe they'll show up some more if I ever decide to enter this realm again.

Most of Dragon takes place in the mountains, so seeing these two originated in the grasslands, I thought why not do a picture of them there?
Who's who? Well, that's always the problem with identical twins, isn't it? ^_^
I've always seen Xinn as the more level-headed of the pair, because being able to measure your years in centuries doesn't automatically mean you won't be immature. Just look at the Doctor...

Monday, 9 December 2013

We have a winner!

So Dark One's Mistress' mini blogtour is over and fun was had. I'd like to thank David, Loni, Angeline, Krista & Katie for helping me out as well as everyone who dropped by.

But we're all here wondering who won that $20 Amazon Gift Card, yes? Well, wonder no more, it was...

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, 6 December 2013

Legends of Windemere: Allure of the Gypsies Blog Tour

It's the final day of my mini blog tour and I'm over at Katie Teller's blog with an excerpt of my début novel, Dark One's Mistress. So I'll be handing over my blog to Charles Yallowitz as he announces...


Legends of Windemere: Allure of the Gypsies has Arrived!!!

Book Blurb:
The epic adventures of Luke Callindor and Nyx continue after their journey down the L’Dandrin River in Legends of Windemere: Prodigy of Rainbow Tower.
Reeling from his failures in their previous adventure, Luke leads his surviving friends to his hometown.  With his mind frayed and his confidence fractured, Luke must face the family and fiancée he left behind.  It is a brief homecoming when the vampire Kalam attacks the village, forcing Luke and Nyx to break into his lair for the key to resurrecting a fallen warrior.  It is a quest that will force both young heroes to reach new heights of strength and power that they never knew they had.
Can Luke and Nyx escape the lair of Kalam?  And, what role will the orphaned gypsy Sari play in their looming destiny?

Wondering what you’re in for? Check out the praise earned by the first two installments of this high fantasy series.

I greatly enjoyed the vivid characters, the gripping plot, and the refreshingly unique writing style (present tense).” – kdillmanjones

This is a sophisticated and delightful read. I recommend this book to lovers of Fantasy or to General Fiction readers. The story is compelling enough to entertain a wide audience.” – John Howell

“One of the things that won me over was the bouts of humor. Especially in the beginning. "This is not possible! I am a Paladin!" I thought I was going to die with delight.” – C.N. Faust

“Something I find unique about this fantasy novel that I don't often find in others, is that the hero, Luke Callindor is rather of the unlucky variety. He does not get everything he asks for, he stumbles, falls, gets knocked down (literally)and taught lessons as he goes. This is helping him to grow into the hero that was promised in the first book.” – Ionia Martin

“Nyx is such a strong personality. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know her and more of the other characters, new and already known, with the rich tapestry of Windemere unfolding in between intense actions scenes and moments of kindness and budding friendships.” – Danielle Taylor

“Almost like the Harry Potter series. The books start out so young and innocent, but by the last book - watch out!” --  Momto4Booklover

Author Biography:
Charles Yallowitz was born and raised on Long Island, NY, but he has spent most of his life wandering his own imagination in a blissful haze. Occasionally, he would return from this world for the necessities such as food, showers, and Saturday morning cartoons. One day he returned from his imagination and decided he would share his stories with the world. After his wife decided that she was tired of hearing the same stories repeatedly, she convinced him that it would make more sense to follow his dream of being a fantasy author. So, locked within the house under orders to shut up and get to work, Charles brings you Legends of Windemere. He looks forward to sharing all of his stories with you and his wife is happy he finally has someone else to play with.

Twitter-  @cyallowitz

Another big event to celebrate the debut of Legends of Windemere: Allure of the Gypsies
is that I’m holding a Goodreads Giveaway! The prize is a paperback copy of ALL THREE LEGENDS OF WINDEMERE NOVELS. Winners will be picked at the end of December, so go HERE to enter the contest.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Thanmir War Release Day!

I've been swapping stories with Loni Townsend for forever. Okay it's been a few months over a years, it feels like I've known her for years. So while I'm sharing some fun facts about myself over at Krista McLaughlin's blog...

I'm also super excited to announce the release of her début fantasy novel...

So need this in paperback
The Earth Clan has declared war and a landscaper is at the dead center of it.

Derek thinks his chronic headaches are the worst of his problems.

He's wrong.

He wakes up in the middle of an unknown forest, surrounded by a couple dozen dead men he has no memory of killing. His only way back to society as he knows it is MaTisha, an amnesic woman with the power to transcend world boundaries.

But going home isn't as easy as he had hoped, not when MaTisha is sought by two opposing armies prepared to do anything to keep her from the other side.

Derek finds himself caught in the center, mixed up with mercenaries and guardians. And now, he's been possessed by a murderous alter ego with a personal mission to keep MaTisha safe. He wants nothing more to return to the life and family he loves.

But his alter ego has other plans.

Author Bio:

Loni Townsend
Wife. Mother. Writer. Ninja. Squirrel.

By day, she writes code. By predawn darkness, she writes fantasies. All other times, she writes in her head.

People call her peculiar with a twisted sense of fashion, but don't let those understatements fool you. Her behavior is perfectly normal for a squirrel disguised as a human. That's part of being an epic ninja—blending in.

She makes her home in Idaho with her sadistically clever—yet often thwarted—husband, two frighteningly brilliant children, and three sneaky little shibas.

Thanmir War is her debut novel.

Be sure to stalk her in style via...

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Dark One's Mistress Blog Tour - Day 2

This time where hopping over to my CP, Loni Townsend, for a Top Ten of Mundane Animals in Fantasy.

Because, sometimes, you need ordinary...

Monday, 2 December 2013

Mini Blog Tour Kickoff!

Today is the start of my mini tour and it's kicking off with a guest post on David King's blog. Don't forget to enter my giveaway whilst you're over there for a chance to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card.

Saturday, 30 November 2013

I did it! I won Nano!

My first time participating in National Novel Writing Month and I won! I actually managed to type 50,000 words on one story in 30 days!
I knew it'd be tough, I knew it was likely to involve late nights and pouting spouse faces. Since the first day when I started with a wedding that had people drinking someone else's blood, I've combined planned chapters and divided others when they grew gigantic. Things happened that I wasn't expecting and, even though I was certain I'd fall short by 5,000 words, I plugged on.

All in all, it's been one crazy roller-coaster of a month.

Of course, I didn't expect to be doing this whilst fighting off the big blargh and spending a couple of days editing Golden Dawn and The Rogue King (the latter alone bringing my actual total to over 52k).

And even though I was putting these 50,000 words onto the 24k I already had, I've still got the last two chapters to finish in full. But I am officially too wiped and not at all emotionally prepared to do them justice right now. Maybe tomorrow...

Monday, 25 November 2013

Cover Reveal: Allure of the Gypsies

Legends of Windemere: Allure of the Gypsies
By Charles E. Yallowitz
Cover Art done by Jason Pedersen

Release Date:  December 1st, 2013
(You better be writing that down.)

Not sure what's she's conjuring, but
that is some wicked blue fire.
The epic adventures of Luke Callindor and Nyx continue after their journey down the L’Dandrin River in Legends of Windemere: Prodigy of Rainbow Tower.

Reeling from his failures in their previous adventure, Luke leads his surviving friends to his hometown. With his mind frayed and his confidence fractured, Luke must face the family and fiancée he left behind.  It is a brief homecoming when the vampire Kalam attacks the village, forcing Luke and Nyx to break into his lair for the key to resurrecting a fallen warrior. It is a quest that will force both young heroes to reach new heights of strength and power that they never knew they had.

Can Luke and Nyx escape the lair of Kalam? And, what role will the orphaned gypsy Sari play in their looming destiny?

Previous Books:

Author Bio:
Charles Yallowitz was born and raised on Long Island, NY, but he has spent most of his life wandering his own imagination in a blissful haze. Occasionally, he would return from this world for the necessities such as food, showers, and Saturday morning cartoons. One day he returned from his imagination and decided he would share his stories with the world. After his wife decided that she was tired of hearing the same stories repeatedly, she convinced him that it would make more sense to follow his dream of being a fantasy author. So, locked within the house under orders to shut up and get to work, Charles brings you Legends of Windemere. He looks forward to sharing all of his stories with you and his wife is happy he finally has someone else to play with.

Links to stalk in style:
Blog | Goodreads | Twitter

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Can I get a little help here?

November has been quite the month. Don't let my past blog posts fool you, I haven't been all that active. A small part of that, okay a huge part of it, was due to being hit by the blerg bug from the deepiest deep, deep, deep of the Earth's core! I'll spare the details. Safe to say I'm feeling better now ... if spontaneously hacking up your lungs for no obvious reason can be classed as better, but I digress...

This link will take you
to Goodreads. Go on, you
know you want to.
Alongside being sickly and having Dark One's Mistress released into the world , I've also had the first edits for Golden Dawn come through and I've assurances that the preliminary edits for The Rogue King will appear by the end of the week.

What energy I've had left has been channelled into Nanowrimo. I'm creeping up on 39k there with three chapters to go before I'm done. Seeing that I'm adding it to the 24k I'd already written, I'm not convinced I'll make the full fifty thousand. The way I'm going I'll be about 4k short.

Obviously, I've not had much brainpower over the last week to handle the sudden release of a book I'm in the middle of writing the sequel for. To be honest, I never thought my début novel would be a clean romance, just thinking about it is sort of surreal.

But, again, I digress...

I'm thinking about doing a mini blog tour for a week starting on December 2nd and going until December 6th, providing I can get a little help.

I know, I know, it's short notice. Obviously, I'm not asking for reviews to be a part of this one. But if anyone's willing to have me guest post, top ten, interview me or just post details (with or without an excerpt), it would all be appreciated.

And, of course, there will be a giveaway. A $20 Amazon Gift Card.

If you want to join me in spreading the word ... drop me an email at aldreaalien[at]yahoo.co.nz or leave a comment with your email.

Edit: All spots have been filled.

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Moonless Blog Tour - Top Ten Reasons to Eat Cheese

Top Ten Reasons to Eat Cheese

First of all, let me explain something about cheese. We all know it’s delicious. (Unless you’re crazy, in which case, I can’t help you.) But did you also know cheese is the well-spring of happiness? Let’s break it down:



My default mantra is: If all else fails, eat cheese and be happy. So, with that in mind, here’s the top ten reasons to eat cheese:

10. Because you like variety. (All 800+ types.) 

9. It tastes good, and your taste buds need some excitement too. (Yes, Annasophia, like that.)

8. It can apparently help you lose weight. Check it out!

7. Can't afford to travel the world? WELL YOUR TASTE BUDS CAN!

6. According to this website, it’s an awesome source of vitamins. Duh!

5. It keeps you from aging. No, seriously. (The experts told me so, and I believe them!) 

4. Strong teeth which=a great smile—which means your celebrity crush will suddenly and completely fall for you. 

3. You’ll sleep better—it’s a proven fact. (Because this shirt says so.)

2. And you’d rather not end up like this. --->
(Strengthen your bones. Adopt a cheese.)

1. Because Crystal Collier told you to go eat cheese!

And if that's not enough to convince you, give me a month. The scientists locked in my Floridian basement are just about done with that brainwashing ray gun...

Crystal Collier, author of MOONLESS, is a former composer/writer for Black Diamond Productions. She can be found practicing her brother-induced ninja skills while teaching children or madly typing about fantastic and impossible creatures. She has lived from coast to coast and now calls Florida home with her creative husband, three littles, and “friend” (a.k.a. the zombie locked in her closet). Secretly, she dreams of world domination and a bottomless supply of cheese. 

You can find her on her blog and Facebook, or follow her on Twitter.

Buy MOONLESS HERE or add it on Goodreads.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

It's Out! It's Out! Eeeeeeeeeeeee!

I'd no idea when Dark One's Mistress would be released, but it's now! You can buy it through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords or via Astraea Press' site.
Looks like I'll be laying the groundwork for a blog tour earlier than expected. A blog tour! I thought I'd be wading into that depth next year. But hey, it's my early Christmas prezzie!
For now, let me bedazzle you...

For centuries, the people have lived under the protection of their so-called Dark Lord. Now, with news of his death reaching the quiet village of Everdark, rumour whispers that his son, Lucias, is hunting for a mistress to beget him an heir.

Clara doesn't put much stock in village gossip, until she finds herself forcibly taken to the Lord's fortress. Escape is not easy. She has no way out and, against a man with magic, little chance of fighting back. But the Lords are still men and the death of Lucias' father is proof that they die just the same. And yet, if Lucias dies heirless, his army will be free to terrorise the land.

Such is the goal of Lenora of Ne'ermore, an old enemy and ex-prisoner of the kingdom. She is sending a man to slaughter Lucias and, to ensure there's no chance of an heir, his mistress must die as well.

Caught between regaining her freedom or losing it for the good of the kingdom, Clara struggles to decide her path before certain death breaches the gates.


I guess that makes me an officially published author! ^_^

Monday, 11 November 2013

Cover Reveal: The Rogue King

Yep. This was never
meant to be a
professional cover.
It's here! The time for me to reveal my cover is here! *happy dance* ... okay, no one really needed to see that. But I've been harbouring this bad boy for some months now.

See, I love to fiddle with creating covers. They help me envision the day when the story behind them would be published. It's a motivational thing. And this story has been through four versions over the years.
But I know my limits when I originally decided to self-publish The Rogue King, I knew mister Main Character over there was not going to make the grade.

And yet, he is what I've wanted on my cover for a long time since the story focuses around him.

As you can no doubt guess, he's not something you can get from your average photo.
So ... I took to the web, scouring the sites for an artist who could render my guy better than me. After back-pedalling from a few sites before I'd a heart attack and umming over a few other sites, I was no less confused than before.
One night, while half awake, I turned to deviantART. That's where a lot of the artists I found kept a large portion of their portfolios, and they've a forum for people to commission commercial works. This is where I fell upon my knees before the artistic community and explained my situation ... poorly, I may add. This eventually led me to Ros Kovac (Warning: Graphic Images).
Now I had never commissioned anything like this in my life and I was still a little fuzzy on the whole process, but Ros was kind enough to lead me through all that. Even when I forgot one crucial detail. *blush* I did a lot, I mean a lot, of private squeeing for each stage, but the final image had me bouncing around the house.
I regret nothing as I, for the first time in sixteen years, finally have an accurate image of my MC.

And that's how the cover went from my poor attempt to this...

 Admit it, you skipped to here. ^_^
Outside is dangerous.

 Such is the warning Koral has heard for twelve years. Born a product of genetic manipulation, he knows little else of the world beyond the steel walls of his home.

When fate gives him the choice between certain death and the unknown, there's no question in what he must choose. But he's about to find out the sands he must brave are full of more than mere monsters.

Providing the desert doesn't kill him first.

This is a world ruled by instinct, where innocence is drowned in blood. Here, men are offered up to the great Serpent God, Lorric, only to emerge as the most feared killers on the planet: The Rogues.

With the god's sights set on turning Koral into a legend, he must sacrifice himself to survive and be reborn as... The Rogue King.

It seems so much more real now. Well, this and having the little section on Goodreads.

Of course, I love the full spread of the paperback version even more.

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Cover Reveal: Branded

Coming to you in 2013 by Soul Mate Publishing...
A New Adult Romantic Suspense...

Branded by Katie Hamstead!

That brand sure looks like it would
seriously hurt.
Blurb: Terrorists have invaded Sydney, and Allison King barely escapes her brother’s wedding reception alive. She and her siblings flee, but their parents are killed by firing squad.

Now Ali’s on the run and terrified. While searching for other survivors, she is captured by the General who leads the invasion. He’s smitten by Ali, and when she refuses to submit to his whims, he brands her for death. In a wild act of defiance, she snatches the branding rod and sears the mark onto his face. Marking not only him but also sealing her fate. Ali manages to escape and flees into the bush once more where she finds a group in hiding. Even with the scars left by the General, Ali learns to love and falls in love with the young man who found her—Damien Rogers.

But the General is hunting her. When he discovers their location, and finds her with another man—Damien—his wrath is kindled and his obsession is inflamed. Ali must put herself on the line or the General could kill her family, those who help her, and most significantly, the man she loves.

Author Links: Twitter | Facebook page | Blog | Goodreads

Monday, 4 November 2013


Last night, after a stretch of typing for NaNoWriMo (three days, 5700 words, no one's more surprised than me), I played around with a little program called Aeon Timeline. Apparently, you can get 40% off if you "win" at Nano.

But if you're going to play with the trial, I recommend doing so when you've some time as I started tinkering and only surfaced hours later. It's an interesting little thing and, much to my delight, you can customise a calendar, which really matters for those fantasy worlds with more than the average amount of days in their years.
So, naturally, I'm not using this for my current story, but for The Rogue King Saga and the Godless Series seeing that the first series encompasses thirty-four years. I already had a basic timeline stripped down by years to ensure ages were all correct. I've been using it for years, yet had no idea why it worked so well.

It seems, as I punched in all the details for The Rogue King and some of A Game of Cat and Horse, I've been keeping a mental timeline holed up and waiting for this program. I've only got the first story fully inserted, but so far, every age I'd typed, each passing of the time, all add up. You'd think I'd be more impressed, but after sixteen years, I'd be mad if they didn't.

So here's to hoping the other three of the saga follow suit and it'll help with The Gems of Thardrandia once I start writing it, because I'm keeping this program.

Friday, 1 November 2013

Cover Reveal: Ribbon of Darkness

Today we have Decadent Kane and her cover reveal for Ribbon of Darkness.

Rank of elves
Old Norse mythology claimed that when a man died he could be ranked as an elf in death.

Short book blurb for Ribbon of Darkness:
An old family secret draws Ribbon into an Elven world while Draven is forced to find a way to drag her back home to save Christmas magic.

Book information:
Ribbon of Darkness is set to release December 13th 2013
Sign up for the newsletter to be notified of publications.

Find out more about the author, Decadent Kane by stalking her via:

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Good ol' Murphy and his Law

You'd think, seeing it's only a few days before Nano and a week since I last typed, that I'd be either kicking back and relaxing for a bit or getting all sorted before jumping into Dark One's Wife.

Do you hear it? The hollow laughter of the universe?
Scary, isn't it?

Of course, I've had no such luck. Silly me for hoping I would have time.

Do ya get the title now?
A few days after typing THE END on A Game of Cat and Horse, the universe dumped so much horror on me.
Never mind my little novella has crept up close enough to the 30k mark after two days of editing that I might as well label it as such. I'ma too sick to care and stuck battling off mind-fogging colds, parties that happened, one that'll happen in the future and the big what-do-you-mean-your-school-Halloween-party-is-cancelled? drama. And after I got a costume. Bleh.

Let me make this clear. Halloween as a holiday had barely caught on in my youth, so trick-or-treat was a foreign beast to me and, being rural, I never got involved in it. Ergo, the idea of going door to door is scary. So the hunt for a new party is on. I have two days.

But the most terrifying thing in my life at the moment is my office chair, the one I've owned for around nineteen years. The bugger has been creaking and squeaking for some time now. It's old, it's allowed to squeak. But, recently, the seat will occasionally rock when you sit down.
Unnerving, Even though it's not supposed to. Only yesterday my fiancé found out why...

It is cracked right were the seat is welded to the base!

As of right now, I'm sitting on a time bomb that could crack and dump me the next time I sit down. Considering the space I sit in is just big enough for the chair, falling promises to be bone-cracking nasty. Seeing my only other option is standing, I can but hope is it stays together long enough for me to save up for a replacement. Might as well get me a decent one.

Can someone please give me a redo of this last week?

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Introducing ...

Name: Klara
Story: The Rogue King
Status: Roguess

Klara, the all-round pest of the desert.
Having been hanging about the story for as long as the Rogue King Saga itself, I actually have a certain hate-filled fondness for Klara ... despite her insanity, the jealousy streak that's half a planet wide and her long-standing tendency to want to drug people for her own purposes.
She stuck around more in the original than she does now and did a ton more poisoning (she's had a 100% decline there), although I can't recall why she wanted to bump off practically everyone. I never asked her, still not sure if I really want to know.

I can't help but wonder why her fingers look so long. I swear, I did nothing to make them that way. Sadly, the computer ate the file, literally did not want to save so ... she's stuck this way until I feel like revamping her again.

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

One of these days, I'll get it right

First it was 20,000 words, then as I plotted the chapters, it jumped to 22k.
As it whizzed by that target, gaining chapters as it went, I decided it must stop at 26k. After all, that's how many chapters it had. But no, that was not to be.
28k then, I cried. For surely, it cannot grow any larger. Again, it sauntered on by that number.
Please stop at 29k, I begged. And, at last, as I heave a sigh, it has listened.


What's that? What am I talking about?

Oh, A Game of Cat and Horse, my companion novella for The Rogue King Saga, is finally finished! Huzzah! Just in time for me to get some edits in before Nano arrives and, at 29,000 words, way over its original targeted estimate.
Although, knowing me, it'll likely gain another thousand during edits and critiques, if not more. I'm just glad it didn't turn out big enough to become a novel. I could've done it so easily, showing scenes already written in The Rogue King Saga through their eyes, but no. This has always been intended as an extra. No rehashing of old scenes via another point of view.

Now onwards to Nano and Dark One's Wife! I've got a wedding to attend and a bride to kidnap ... ah, already, I feel a change of plot coming on.

But before then, purely because I can, I present to you A Game of Cat and Horse's prologue. (Oh my yes, it has both a prologue and an epilogue)


Sunlight streamed through the gaps in the canvas. Far from a sleek beam, the light came in haphazardly as the caravan bumped and slithered its way over the sand. Laccindy glared blearily at the fingers of light. What was the time?

She stretched and yawned, taking in a lungful of hot, dry air. The dustiness within the caravan tickled her nose and a fit of sneezing soon banished all traces of drowsiness. Smacking her lips, she made her way over the bundles of cloth and tightly wrapped food. Her father would have a waterskin at his side.

Tucking the canvas flap back, Laccindy brushed the long straggles of hair from her face. She stared out at the bright yellow desert ahead of them, bringing an arm up to shield her eyes from the glare. How did the suns manage to shine so much brighter out here than back home?

At the front of the caravan, her father sat hunched over in the driver's seat, the reins lax in his hands. He twitched as she clambered over the planking to flop next to him, pushing back the russet hair tangling around his ears. The sunlight glittered upon his earrings. "You should stay inside, sharra. It's not safe."

She snorted and rolled her eyes. Nowhere was considered safe ever since they'd left Catsckin, be it the weeks travelling aboard the cargo ships, or the journey along the main trade route and the short time spent in Maxia City. "You worry too much, papa." It wouldn't be worth Lady Perjarno's time or coin to chase them beyond the Maxian border.

Squinting, she surveyed the surrounding desert. The ruddy bulk of Rogue Rise sat on the horizon. Hazy from dust and distance. Nothing moved out on the sand. Just us.

Her father smiled down at her, warping the pale brown spots around his eyes. "I'm your father, 'Cin. Worrying comes with the territory and Rogues are not something to be made light of." He fingered the hunting knife at his side. "Dealing with her thugs would be easy compared to them."

And yet we run. The noblewoman had taken everything from them. Except me. That's why they ran. Her father would prefer to face the Rogues than hand Laccindy over to Perjarno. He may think the woman's hired muscle easy now they were beyond their reach, but that hadn't stopped her father from stealing a cart in the middle of the night just to escape them.

Laccindy return to examining the sands. Had it really been just a few months ago? It felt like years. Now here they were, with two caravans of cheap cargo, searching for a future and carrying so little of their past. None of which would be able to remind her of what she once had.

This was all her mother's fault. Why did she have to go and die? Perjarno wouldn't be after Laccindy if her mother still lived. They could be back home. Sniffing, she blinked away her tears. She would still have a home.

"Hey." Her father cupped her chin and tipped her head up. "Mama wouldn't want us to cry, now would she, sharra?"

She sniffed again and, unable to halt the smile forming on her lips, shook her head. She'd been her father's 'precious' for as long as she could recall, whereas her mother hated people being the slightest bit sentimental. If her father had fallen instead, Laccindy had no doubts her mother wouldn't cry over it. Neither in private nor in public.

Her father stiffened, his gaze focusing on somewhere beyond her. "Get back inside."

Laccindy didn't waste time in arguing or searching for whatever her father had spotted. She already knew the answer. Rogues. But her father swore they were safe. Had somehow ensured the caravans wouldn't be a target.

She'd heard tales about the dangers of the desert, of the Rogues. Even in Catsckin, where meeting one would require sailing from Jepol then trekking across half the Zan continent, the bitter stories of a Rogue attack was ever prevalent. In the absence of Shadow Speakers, of dark borns, of true monsters, the Rogues became the new source of terror.

Did the Rogues themselves care? Of course not. They revelled in their title.

To a passing caravan, they were every fear rolled into one. Looting? A given choice in the harsh clime. Arson? A personal option, but why leave the spoils for another? And death? Everyone agreed it was death that the Rogues excelled at. Fast or slow, torturous or painless ... rumour said they could do them all.

The canvas ripped open. Her father barrelled into the confines, crushing the parcels in his wake, his large ears flattened against his head and his azure eyes impossibly wide. "Run!"

Laccindy tore out the back of the caravan. Her pounding heart driving her on, she ran blindly into the desert. Something grabbed her tail. She stumbled and slammed face first into the sands.

Hands grabbed her legs, hauling her towards her doom. Screaming, she fought their grip, scrabbling for purchase and finding none. They had her! The Rogues had her! She was going to die!

"Get away from my daughter!"

Laccindy managed to roll over in time to see her father, his hunting knife glittering wickedly in the sunlight, slam into the Rogue. They tumbled across the dune in a ball of snarls and roars. Blood splattered across the sand and, as the sand settled, her father stooped to wipe his knife clean on the raptereon's hide.

Behind him, the caravans burned. This had not been a lone Rogue.

"Go!" Her father pointed off into the desert. His head snapped to face where more Rogues were coming, his claws extending. "Hurry, 'Cin. Hide yourself!"

Laccindy raced across the dunes to throw herself into the soft sand pooling at its base. Behind her came the snarls of people fighting. The smell of burning cloth reached her nose and in the distance, she caught the crackle of flames. She lay huddled in a hollow, the sand slithering down the slope to coat her hide, tiny stinging grains of it burrowing into her wound.

Then there was silence. A horrible, numbing calm. She knew. Without moving, without lifting her head to see, she knew the horrid truth.

She was alone.