Hello and happy reading to all! Today I am chatting about the latest book I read. It is Terry Irving’s Day of the Dragonking, which is Book One of The Last American Wizard series. It is a fantasy book that is one heck of a wild ride!
The Day of the Dragonking features Steve Rowan as the last American wizard and Ace Morningstar, a female Navy SEAL who has orders to defend Steve… Well, unless it comes down to defending him or his cell phone, in which case the cell takes precedence.
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It is dark in the city where the shadows full prowl,
It is dark as the black wings of night,
It is dark in my heart where the threads are full torn,
But I know where you are, it is bright…
This poem is found in my short The Threads of Sorrow. The verse was inspired by an AMV I found featuring “The Beginning is the End Is the Beginning” by Smashing Pumpkins. Alas, the AMV has been removed from YouTube, but the memory and the haunting lyric “Is it bright where you are?” remain.
So as you can tell I really like this little writing exercise/challenge. It doesn’t take much to get me to blather on about my work, and this 777 thing (along with having my favorite number) gives me ample excuse.
The Threads of Sorrow is my only published work available in the January/February 2013 issue of Separate Worlds, which I currently can’t find on the site *sigh* This is one of the many reasons I will be seeking another publication location for this tale since SW isn’t very well known, their website is not well organized, and they’re not very versatile among other things. I regret rushing the publication of this story, but I was so excited that someone, anyone was willing to accept it that I didn’t really consider all of the details. The journal didn’t appear to be a scam so I went with it to satisfy my need for validation. Now looking back I wish I’d waited, but thankfully, SW is okay with multiple publications so it’s a matter of me re-editing and finding another magazine of better repute that has a similar policy to the same.
“You are a dark angel who serves the queen.” It was not a question, but Uriel nodded still. “Could we not then just…fly to her throne?”
Her captor cocked his head to the side observing flushed cheeks and guileless features. There were none now living who’d ever dared asked where a dark angel might hide his wings.
And are you so quick to face your fate, child? In torment he saw white steel weeping blood as cold as endless snows…
“No, little one,” he said as she shivered. “We shall take the mundane path. I shall reveal no horror to you.”
Can you tell I like stories about dark/fallen angels? I don’t think they get enough love, and I love the idea of the redemptive fallen. Redemption stories are my favorite. It’s what draws me to such narratives as Les Misérable, and one of the many factors that prompted me to write Northern Lights.
I believe three shall be the magic number here as I’m currently out of WIP stories, but that will more than likely not be the case for long. I could also potentially use the second halves of stories. The world is full of possibilities.
Disclaimer: Final Fantasy VII, its characters, and settings are all property of Square Enix so I can take no credit nor claim any ownership of that. I do take some credit for the story’s plot.
Artwork Disclaimer: I did not create and therefore own no rights to the featured artwork. It was created by artist Alegria, and the source for it can be found here. I was unable to locate a way to contact the artist and was therefore unable to ask permission before featuring their work. If you are the artist, I apologize profusely for this transgression and will gladly remove this picture from this and all sites at your request.
***Warning: Attempted rape***
“Wind in time rapes the flower trembling on the vine…”
-Sarah McLachlan “Fear”
The cats were always hungry, but they were ever wary, too. Steeped in shadow like a second skin, they clung to fear over bleak starvation until necessity drove them forth. Aeris always made sure she had something for them, knowing how desperate it was to starve. People were…not kind to cats in Midgar. Their slit eyes condemned them to pain. The bandy-legged tom with only ear was always the last to approach. The other hadn’t been lost in some back alley scuffle. The edges were far too clean… Then there was a calico who was almost friendly, though her eyes had been dug out of her skull. She would often approach albeit slowly to bump a flat head against Aeris’s shin. Though if the Cetra reached down for her, the cat would hiss and back away. The fat white one was noticeably smaller and attended by kittens today. Even at their brief age, they stayed close and made no overt sounds. Death awaited any offspring that would give a position away.
Aeris set down the two bowls of soup and tried to rub the cold from her upper arms. There was never any wind this far below the plate, just an ever present chill. She never remembered it being this frigid in the sector of her mother’s house. Dearest Elmyra, she had been a true mother, though she hadn’t given her birth. Like everyone Aeris had ever loved, she counted her amongst her dead. Of the other the Cetra only remembered a hazy shade of green and a whispered plea on dying lips.
The sun is down,
The night is old,
My sorrows shall I keep,
Let me live,
Or let me die,
But never let me weep.
The sky is burning on the wind,
And all the stars are fled,
But I shall keep my secrets here,
And not betray the dead…
For as I live this borrowed life,
This silence I shall keep,
Today I breathe until I die,
But never let me weep.
This poem is featured in my currently shelved for editing paranormal romance novel The Serpent’s Tale. It also lent its title to a fanfiction of the same (if pluralized) name Borrowed Lives. I’ve linked to that story but not posted it here because there’s an update I need to make for my own sanity/sense of rightness. Once I have five minutes to do so, here shall it be.
My plan for those so concerned is to start posting Northern Lights on Friday March 27 and continue doing so every week on that day henceforth until the tale is told. That being said I work late this upcoming Friday so the Preamble/Prelude and first chapter may not come until later in the evening, but rest assured, I will post them before I retire for the night.
A gratuitous gleaning of gratitude for all of you so interested in this tale.
I created a daydream and climbed inside,
It was the best place that I could hide.
Away from my troubles, reality’s curse.
Is this better or is this worse?
I enjoyed the first 777 writing challenge so much that I decided to do it with my other WIP, a dark fantasy/paranormal romance entitled The Serpent’s Tale. Now this original novel has been shelved for a while. It’s actually completed, but I went through a whole lot of issues surrounding rejection, depression, and whatnot with the story over five years ago. Since then I’ve edited down the first part to under 120k words, but then I wrote a short story based off of it, then became buried under the yoke of Northern Lights, and all of my time and energy went towards that, but I think of The Serpent’s Tale quite often and hope that I’ll have some time to work on it this year. I do want to eventually go for publication, but it’s going to take a lot of time and a confidence boost (which is what I’m hoping Northern Lights will bring).
Anyway so here is the challenge for The Serpent’s Tale, which is a story in two parts. This is from Part I.
In this season born from winter’s grip, the air held the wonder of potential, but Maya felt only emptiness burning to her core. A thin patina of sweat covered her brow, denying the cold its due.
She had said her goodbyes the night before after evening prayers. Throughout devotions, the normal silence fluttered with whispers like wings. Brother Alfreth’s leaky gaze more than often found her face, and the little maid was far more saddened by his unbidden tears.
Afterwards, Maya overheard Ilia and Orual giggling behind soft hands.
Nothing super exciting here really, just some Mean Girls-esque behavior and the worry of far worse things to come.