Most of y’all know that for me to say this summer has been crazy would be putting it mildly. Between my awesome but hectic job and exciting but looming writing deadlines, there was no time for planning anything by the way of cover reveals or news drops or future blog tours for Orphan’s Song which is going to be releasing this fall. I was trying not to stress about it, and then everything came to a screeching halt a week and a half ago, when I got into a car accident, wound up in the hospital for a week, had two surgeries, and am now recovering … with a little bit of time to kill before I’ll be well enough to head back to working my day job. (You can read the full thrilling tale here!) Cue planning. This my friends, is where y’all come in. I am faced with a difficult mission, a task I can by no means accomplish on my own, so I have come to ask you to take a stand by my side. I am in need of a few good men and women, warriors of the pen, readers of fantasy, and bloggers of renown. You see, some authors build tribes. Other establish street teams or set up undercover operatives. I on the other hand am establishing a clan. The word clan carries with it a strong sense of family and community (not to mention incredible brogues and kilts). Clans are united in purpose and mind, with all the members pulling together for the same goal through thick and thin. My goal is to gather together a clan of readers who get excited about the same sort of fantasy novels that I do and would be willing to stand by my side and help spread the news about Orphan’s Song and the future books in the series. The requirements? Clan members must have either a blog, twitter account, facebook page, or other online form of social media where they would be willing to post links, important announcements, and blog tour information. Brogues are encouraged. Kilts are not required. Remember, word of mouth is one of the best ways to spread the news about a novel! In return, clan members can expect sneak peaks at future books, backstage character access, discounts, freebies, giveaways, and more! Interested in joining the clan? You can either leave a comment with your name and email address, and I’ll add you to the list, or if you would prefer, you can send me an email at thesongkeeper(at)gmail(dot)com with your contact information. Once you join the clan, you can expect to receive an email from me in the next few days with your first mission! I appreciate your help as I try to prep Orphan’s Song for release this fall!
Some of you may live in parts of the world where ’tis always winter, but never Christmas. Or the end of school and the beginning of the summer holidays is at least another fortnight away. Perhaps even two. But it’s summer time at camp in Texas. And those of you who’ve followed this blog for any length of time know what that means. The beginning of silence. For those of you who scratching your head in bewilderment over the correlation between summer and silence, let me explain. When I’m not creating fantasy worlds, I work full time as a ministry specialist and equine program manager at a Christian youth camp. As you might imagine, summer time is on time for us. Fourteen plus hour days spent in the summer haze, full of activities and kids and behind-the-scenes-work and most important of all, the chance to share the Gospel … it’s my dream job! One of them at least. At night, I’m busy working on book two of the Song of Leira trilogy. It won’t be long before I’m squeezing edits for both Out of Darkness Rising and Orphan’s Song in there too. That said, I fully intend to pop over here at least once a week to keep the conversation going—whether it’s through a fantasy reflections post, updates, or something of either a heroic or villainous nature from the respective academies. But for once know that silence is a good thing. It means I’m working hard on polishing my books so you can read them. So if the silence ever gets too much for you, imagine the clicking and clacking of the keyboard as I type through the wee hours of the night to get the Song of Leira trilogy into your hands.
For the past several days, I’ve been practically bursting to share some news with y’all. And yet, each time I fingered the keys and started typing this post, something held me back. By the time you read this, I will probably have scrapped and rewritten multiple drafts only to pause at the very end with my cursor hovering over the “publish” button at least a dozen different times before finally summoning enough courage to release my news to the world. It is good news, actually. Thrilling news! You see, the Song of Leira trilogy found a publisher! (Thrilling, right? Cue whooping and hollering and dancing all around!) The first book, Orphan’s Song, is slotted to release Fall 2014 from Marcher Lord Press! Many of my favorite books and authors are with Marcher Lord Press, so it’s an honor and a thrill to join the “team.” It’s been a long journey from start to finish, and it’s not over yet. There were many times along the way where I was temped to lose heart and wonder how I—an ordinary gal from Texas—could have been insanely confident enough to venture into the unknown wilds of the publishing world and expect to return with a contract! To be sure, I had plenty of help and encouragement along the way, and an incredible agent in Amanda Luedeke! More news will be forthcoming soon. I’m about to dive into the busiest time of my year, and I’m also pounding furiously at the keys trying to work on book two of the trilogy, but I will try to keep y’all updated as we reach the important milestones prior to the book’s release. For now, to find out more about the series, check out the Song of Leira page. (Be sure to stop by and meet the characters too!)
For this challenge, I chose Cade Peregrine from my fantasy novel Song of Leira. Bent on fighting the Khelari, Cade serves as an Obstacle Character to Ky who cares less about fighting the soldiers and more about keeping his friends safe.
Excuse me, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Cade.
I’m the leader of a people you don’t know exist. You might say we’re invisible. But that’s just because you people won’t look beyond the comfort of your homes and the warmth of your fires to the horrors taking place on the streets outside.
Horrors committed by the Khelari.
We’re not hard to find. Just look beneath your feet. And know that we are not dead and we will not be forgotten. We are coming. And when we do, the Khelari will rue the day they claimed our city.
Join us. Help us fight. And together, we will win our freedom.
I told you he would try to recruit you.
But you get used to it eventually. That’s just the way Cade is …
Ahoy there mateys! So today, I’m discoverin’, is rather a grand day for those of us who follow the sweet trade.
Tis the one day of the year when we can go around shouting our favorite nautical phrases at the tops of our lungs and no one thinks any the worse of us.
Well, at least, no one admits that they think any the worse of us.
So in honor of this fine day, I’d like to challenge you fine seadogs to test your piratical knowledge with the Shiver Me Timbers Quiz.
Do you have the knowledge it takes to be a true pirate? Or are ye naught but a landlubber pretending the sea flows in his veins …
Holding his dirk by the tip, Amos focused on
the pirate’s broad back—an easy target. He let fly, and a moment later, the
dirk sprouted between the pirate’s shoulder blades. He paused to retrieve his
dirk from the body and looked up to find himself standing in the midst of a
cluster of pirates.
Something slammed into him from behind,
shoving him down and grinding his face into the sand. He gasped for breath and
inhaled a mouthful of dust. He lashed out with his dirk and struggled to rise.
Thud. A boot crashed into his side, followed by a
kick to the chest, and then another and another. Blows poured down upon him.
Beneath the crushing weight of pain, Amos was conscious of only one thing.
He had failed Birdie.
broke into a run. Harpoon in hand, bare feet punching the sand, he raced toward
the sea-demon. He didn’t know what he intended to do. Didn’t even know what he could do. But the sheer audacity of the
action sent his heart pumping with excitement.
least the beast would have a fighting chance.
scadtha’s jaws opened wider and wider till Ronan feared it would swallow the
sea-demon whole. Not that it need to. The rows of jagged teeth filling its
mouth were more than capable of handling the job.
battle cry ripped from Ronan’s lips. He flung himself onto the scadtha’s back, hands
slipping on the slimy scales, and pulled himself up into a crouch at the nape
of the towering neck. He drew both hands back and plunged the harpoon into a
gap between the scales.
It’s time to reveal those dastardly villains of yours! Drag them out of the dark. Boot them out of their evil lairs. Grant them the spotlight for one moment.
For the longest time, I couldn’t decide which antagonist to highlight for this challenge. Eventually, I settled on the antagonist from my fantasy Song of Leira.