Immortality and Gods in Fantasy

January 19th, 2015

It’s interesting to me how many novels, plays, poems (and even, dare I say, religions) deal with immortality without really dealing with immortality, i.e. immortality is automatically assumed, more understood than explored. In our concept, gods are immortal. In fact, immortality is usually a qualifying aspect to being considered a god. In my experience, even […]

Writing Kingdom Blades (PSOL Book 4)

January 12th, 2015

Many of you have been asking when book four in A Pattern of Shadow & Light will be released. All I can tell you right now is that I’ll have Kingdom Blades to you at some point in 2016 (the Muse willing). For comparison, each book in this series runs around 300,000 words, and the first […]

On Isabel and Pelas in Paths of Alir

October 28th, 2014

****SPOILER ALERT***** When I wrote the scene with Isabel and Pelas in the second half of Paths of Alir, I expected it could become controversial. I knew it would hit some readers in a way that felt morally uncomfortable, but I never imagined that the scene would be interpreted as a rape. I’ll explain more of what I did expect […]

3 Reasons Every Indie Author Should Be Advertising on Facebook

October 13th, 2014

As an independently published author, I’ve noticed a lot of advice floating around about building my author platform, establishing my brand and the importance of having a social media presence. What I haven’t seen people blogging heavily about is the value of Facebook ads for indie authors. If you’ve been in this business long enough […]

Ultimate Epic Fantasy Writer’s Playlist

October 6th, 2014

“Two boys arrived yesterday with a pebble they said was the head of a dog until I pointed out that it was really a typewriter.” ~Pablo Picasso Inspiration comes in many forms. There are as many sources of inspiration as there are artists to be inspired. A simple turn of a woman’s face might become the basis of a […]

3 Things Every Indie Author Needs to Know Before Starting Out

September 29th, 2014

Paths of Alir, the third book in my award-winning epic fantasy series, released in stores on Saturday (Yay!!). Along the runway to this book release, I started my own publishing company and created the imprint Five Strands Publishing. Since starting on the indie publishing path in 2010 with Cephrael’s Hand, I’ve learned from the wisdom and experience of […]

4 Steps to Writing Organically, Part II – Viewpoints, Mimicry and Imagination

September 15th, 2014

Think of writing like sailing a massive ship. There are an enormous number of mechanical actions that synergistically combine to keep the ship plowing forward through the waves. It behooves you, as the captain of the vessel, to have an understanding of all of those mechanical workings. Yet if a ship’s captain spent all of […]

Pantser or Plotter: 4 Steps to Writing Organically (and the Science Behind Why You Should) – Part 1

September 8th, 2014

After my last blog post on the four things you must know before starting a novel, in which I suggested not inventing a character, kingdom or creature until the story calls for it, a number of readers wrote in to ask, should nothing be planned? My answer is absolutely plan the four points on the list I gave […]

How to Avoid Cliches (or The 4 Things You MUST Know Before Starting A Novel)

September 1st, 2014

A reader recently wrote to me and asked, how do you write a novel when every time you start (oh, so many times!) you get a few chapters in and suddenly become deluged with doubts? And how, when you’re so well-read in the genre that you’ve read it all and seen it all a hundred […]

4 Steps to the Ultimate Compelling Villain

August 18th, 2014

I want to talk about villains. Not the blackened-to-the-core, maniacally twisted kind or the ultimate evil, soul-devouring kind—I’d say genre fiction is all too familiar with stereotypical antagonists of this ilk. No, I want to talk about the villains you love to hate. Once upon a time in fiction (say, twenty years ago), good and […]