Excitement is building like the thunderstorm over my head…

… and I mean that quite literally – we’re having thundery showers in Wales today and my head is pounding with a pressure headache.

Our weather in the summer goes from this:

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Beautiful blue skies, warm sunshine, soft breezes…  to this:

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Dark grey clouds, portentous and foreboding, brisk winds and chilly rain so fast you’re not sure if you imagined the first sight at all.
*sighs*
It’s something that I’ve grown used to. Where I come from in Suffolk, summers were either so hot and dry that we had dust storms forming from the fields as the light breezes picked the topsoil up and turned everyone orange with it; or they were grey, chilly and dankly depressing.

So I moved to Plymouth to go to Uni and found the weather much more to my liking – more blue skies and warm sunshine than cold and wet (except in the winter of course) – although there was that memorable day one summer where we went from hot sunshine to snow / hail and back to sunshine again.
Wales was a bit of a shock to the system, to be completely honest. However, after living here for more than ten years, I’m now inured to the changeable weather!

Anyway, back to the excitement.

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It’s hard to define this feeling. It’s definitely excitement, but there’s a lot of fear involved as well. This new edition of the story is all five books in one and it’s a Poison Demon of a book – a proper, epic sized fantasy book.

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The cover, as ever, is beautiful – Elizabeth Bank from Selestiele Designs at her best. The editor at Blue Hour Publishing has polished and burnished the content until it gleams, shining like a shiny thing under the bright welsh summer skies (when it is sunny here, it gets very warm and bright) and there’s a little bit of new content included, so even if you’ve read the first four books from when I published them myself, I really would suggest you get this edition!

The fear comes in when I look at how well the fantasy genre is doing in general. The boom produced by the LOTR / Hobbit films is fading and Game of Thrones readers are still waiting for the author to produce the next book in the series (and moaning about it at the same time) but my sort of fantasy, the kind with battles and creatures and destinies, doesn’t seem to be doing that well.
I’m scared that it is going to be too big a book, that it’s not going to do well… oh so many worries that go through my head before I drop off to sleep each night.

All of this is completely normal of course! Ask any writer about the run up to the launch of a new book and you’ll hear the same sort of thing.

If you want to be there for the virtual Launch Party… yes, I’m actually being launched properly… then pop over to facebook and click join at the other end of this link –

The Tower and The Eye Launch Party

I’ll be happy to see you there; the more the merrier!

Fan Fiction Fun… and some Good News!

You may have noticed that I’ve added a new section to the Free Stuff to Read called Morning Rituals.

I had a bit of a word drought recently. The ideas were there, but the words just wouldn’t do what I told them to do.  So as I normally do, I picked up my knitting needles and added a few rounds to the jumper I am knitting GIL.

My first thought was to  take one of the WIP’s I am working on and print them out, chapter by chapter, look carefully at them and then improve them. That idea got scuppered when I realised I only had enough ink in the printer for another 100 pages and the WIP was over three hundred!

So I printed out “Statues of Justice”.

It hasn’t been selling very well recently, so I’d taken it down with the idea of seeing what I could do to improve the story.

I started going through with a green pen, adding comments about changes and generally sorting out what was bad. By the time I got to the end of the first page, the printed word had been obscured by the pen.

Whoops.

So I scribbled rewrite on the top and started out on that.

Then this morning, unable to knit because my wrists were hurting and doubly unable to rewrite because I just couldn’t face the amount of work it was turning into, I jumped into the shower.

No, that’s not my shower, I wish it were, but I only have an ordinary one…

I did all the things I usually do in the shower and as I was watching my hair spider its way down to the plug hole, I had a brainwave.

TOH was playing Batman: Arkham Asylum downstairs and he was engaged in chasing Harley Quinn around the mansion. Harley has always been one of my favourite villainesses. I love her outfits – so casual, carefree, practical and fun – so much like her attitude to life. So I thought I’d do a piece about Harley.

As I was in the shower when I thought of it, I thought Harley’s morning routine would be an interesting angle to go for, so  I started writing.

As I was writing, I decided that I’d do the same to a few other characters I like. Not necessarily all Batman, just characters that I liked, from TV, Comics… anywhere really. I’ll be posting them under the same heading if you want to keep up with them!

* * * *

Now for the News.

The Tower and The Eye Series has been picked up by Blue Hour Publishing.

This is why it is being taken off of sale, in preparation for an extensive editing and adjusting process (should my new editor feel they need them) before being re-released!

So watch out for more news on this process!

 

The Languages of Tolkien and other communications

While I’m writing, especially in a Quargard story, I need to render a spell from English into a different language. Normally the character I am using is elvish, so I use the languages invented by Papa Tolkien himself to create the spell.

That’s when I’ll go to a site like this – 

alphaDictionary * Free Tolkien Languages Dictionary – Free Tolkien Languages Grammar

Sometimes I might take a leaf out of J K Rowling’s book and write everything backward … Mirror of Erised anyone?

Occasionally, I’ll turn to the Celtic languages for inspiration, so you might find a jumble of Welsh, Irish or Gaelic making an appearance.

I apologise to speakers of those languages for the mangling I put them through… it’s all Google Translate’s fault you know…

And just sometimes I may even combine all three… you never know what I am going to do to make sure the spell sounds particularly mystic…