Volume 2 The Usurper now out!!

March 11, 2014 § Leave a comment

http://amzn.to/PoP3Y0

The Usurper is now out on Amazon Kindle and this is the short code to access it.

The Usurper cover

 

The Usurper: Synopsis

March 3, 2014 § Leave a comment

Just to whet your appetite, here is the synopsis for volume 2.

The Usurper is volume 2 of the adult fantasy series The Azhad: Elgir.

7 years have passed since our hero Elghios acquired the power.

A series of tragic events provoke a power struggle in the kingdom of Atelia, and opposing factions intrigue to gain control. Elghios will have to forge unexpected alliances, and wage war to protect the throne, but what exactly are his motives? Will the Royal Army, faced with fantastical creatures and the cruel forces of nature, reach the city of Arkis in time to save it? Whom can Elghios trust, and can his old friends in Gallisport, Hederick Grunwald and Eremides Karamanis, still trust him?

A philosopher once said, “Only the puppeteer can see our strings”. Is this part of a greater story? If so, who is pulling the strings?

And what of the mysterious power, does Elghios control it or does it control him?

**FREE TODAY AND TOMORROW*

February 15, 2014 § Leave a comment

The Vispadjinn is free today and tomorrow on Amazon Kindle: download your copy now!

Wow!

December 11, 2013 § Leave a comment

As of today we have 199 likes on Facebook. Thank you to everyone that follows us.

Apart from posting on Facebook and Twitter quite regularly, we also post on some Fantasy forums: Fantasy-Faction, Best Fantasy and The Fantasy Forum. They have some interesting discussions on all fantasy areas. Worth taking a look, if you have a spare moment!

Character descriptions

November 17, 2013 § 1 Comment

How detailed should character descriptions be?

Do readers prefer to be given just a brief physical description? Once the reader has some idea of age, height, physique, hair colour is it better to leave the rest up to their imagination? Should they infer more details from the character’s actions and reactions? Of course descriptions don’t necessarily have to be physical. The way a character talks, the way he sees the world, the things he likes or dislikes, and other traits are all a part of creating detailed descriptions.

In other words how prescriptive dare an author be?

I’m sure most authors have a full picture of main characters as they write. One of the best ways to create a truly believable character is to create their world by asking yourself a myriad of questions about the person. How would they react in x situation, which is their favourite food/animal/colour etc? I have a huge list of questions that I use to bring the character to life in my mind, but sometimes it’s hard to gauge just how much of this back history to share in the book. Fantasy novels need to have a plot that carries the reader forward, a fast narrative pace and too much detail and introspection can hinder that. I think the balance between character and plot is particularly key in fantasy as readers have fairly set expectations of what they will find in this type of novel.

Perhaps the skill is of a great fantasy novel is to challenge those expectations? is that what sets apart the Tolkiens of this world?

 

Last chance saloon

October 4, 2013 § Leave a comment

Today is your last chance to download The Vispadjinn free from Amazon Kindle – http://www.amzn.to/1aS0Xlh

And don’t forget  after reading it, to leave us a review please!

Faerie folk

September 29, 2013 § Leave a comment

Gnomes, elves, dwarfs, goblins, pixies, imps, piskies, nymphs, sprites – there are so many different races and varieties! Each name conjures up its own associations and personality traits. Some are mischievous, some elegant or graceful, others spiteful or downright malicious.
Added to those are the species like the halflings invented by certain authors, for instance Tolkien’s hobbits and Weiss and Hickman’s kender.
My co-author has invented his own version of halflings. He happened to be studying the changing taxonomy of prosimians (a hobby of his!) and based our gnomes on bushbabies and lorises.
After that he scoured the internet and some of his own mythology references and discovered over a hundred different types of faeries, nymphs and sprites from all over the world. He has invented quite a few more too that will feature in future tales in our series. We think the name ‘Hobbit’ probably comes from the old word, hob, which is a household spirit or brownie. ‘Kender’ (from the Dragonlance books) probably comes from ‘kinder’, the German for children. The Dragonlance books also feature ‘gully dwarves’ which inspired our ‘elf-dwarfs’ or ‘scutters’. As you can probably tell my co-author is quite fascinated by these ‘little people’.

Only the puppeteer can see our strings!

September 18, 2013 § Leave a comment

blue eye

We’re pleased that our new tagline has provoked  quite a positive response on Facebook. We hope that it captures the atmosphere of the book and hints at various themes.

As you can see from the cover of the first volume in the series, eyes figure prominently in the plot. They are important literally and symbolically. The idea of manipulation will become even more important in volume two.

Favourite genre?

September 10, 2013 § Leave a comment

Robot hand with word fantasy

I’ve been surprised by how many people have said to me – ‘great to have published a novel, but sorry fantasy isn’t really my genre.’

It’s got me thinking about the types of books I read and whether I am excluding certain genres that I might find enjoyable. I read a lot of Scandinavian thrillers (or slice and dice as some refer to them) for pure escapism; historical fiction of the Philippa Gregory/Hilary Mantel type, usually some random titles from the Orange/Booker lists each year and masses of ‘classics’ both for teaching purposes and because I enjoy them. To be honest, fantasy as a genre hasn’t figured that prominently on my reading list in the past.  Like the rest of the world I’ve read and hugely enjoyed Lord of the Rings a few times and after watching some of Game of Thrones on Sky that’s definitely on the list, but I’ve now discovered how much really interesting fantasy literature is out there.

Fantasy literature varies as much as any other genre with some like ours tending towards the dark side. The next in our series will be much more political in nature with more intrigue and machination. Fantasy doesn’t mean that interesting characters and psychological depth have to be sacrificed on the altar of plot.

So why not try out some fantasy novels – you never know – you might enjoy them!

Fantasy genre – a male preserve?

September 4, 2013 § Leave a comment

men only

http://www.flickr.com/photos/emilyhigginson/1537823333/

As the female half of our fantasy writing partnership  I am intrigued as to why it seems that mainly males both read and write the fantasy genre. Is it because the books are often action/plot predominant with less emphasis on character/emotions? Are fantasy novels written by female authors different? Can you tell the gender of the author if the name doesn’t give it away?
I always hate to confirm a stereotype but in our partnership my preserve has been mainly to deepen the characters, introduce some empathy etc. I have to admit that although I enjoy reading fantasy(as well as writing it!) I certainly don’t read it to the exclusion of all else.
I’d be fascinated to get others’ views on this.

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