Blog « Official Author Website of Melissa McPhail

What’s in a Name? Naming Characters in Fantasy Worlds

“What’s in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”  So says Juliet in her soliloquy about Romeo. As Shakespeare points out, names are a combination of symbols, associated with sounds, which are assigned to represent a person or thing in our minds. Often times in life, the superficiality of a name. . . Read More


The Lie

I was reading an article recently by Sherrinda Ketchersid on The Writers Alley Blog, where she introduces the concept of The Lie. Sherrinda wrote: “Character development hinges on The Lie. You see, your hero needs to overcome something in his life. There needs to be some lie he believes that taints every part of his belief system, every action, and. . . Read More


Oh where, oh where is Book 2?

I’ve been getting numerous requests for an update on Book 2, The Dagger of Adendigaeth.  So here goes! The manuscript is complete. Yes, truly.  It’s not quite as long as Cephrael’s Hand, but you’ll have lots of time with your favorites, plus an introduction to Kjieran van Stone, the truthreader sworn to King Gydryn who. . . Read More


Björn van Gelderan Is Good (or is he?)

“Björn van Gelderan is good.  I’m telling you, he is.”  (reader quote) If you’ve read Cephrael’s Hand, perhaps you have an opinion on the Fifth Vestal’s motivations and actions.  Perhaps you’ve decided that he’s been wrongly maligned by the other Vestals and the rest of humanity, the stories of his ill deeds compounded with each. . . Read More


Everyone says you have to have a blog.

It’s true.  You do.  Everyone says so. I’m not a big fan of the “everyone” generality.  First, because it’s horrifically glib.  Second because it’s rarely accurate.  But the statement is so darned prevalent everywhere from forums to eBooks telling aspiring writers how to be Kindle bestsellers that you can’t spit without hitting another guru who’s. . . Read More