Thursday, March 15, 2018

On Writing War & Grace: Video Update #5

Pre-Order War & Grace!

In a time when the Realm of Faerie and Planet Earth exist in symbiotic union, the epic journey of a young half-faerie woman will transform the future of both worlds ...

My name is Melia Albiana and I stand on the edge of the abyss.
Before I leap, I exhale a breath out of time.
The beauty of the Whole unfurls before me—its intricacy, its complexity, its endurance, its mystery, its majesty.
I am filled with awe.
The universal awareness passes and I am left with the poverty of my personal legacy.
I will die young.
I will die broken.
I will die grief-stricken.
I will die lonely.
And I will die a monster.
I will also die consumed by love.

Whimsical and edgy, Daughter of Light is an epic fantasy with an intriguing cosmology and well-developed characters for readers of all ages.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Come Away, O Human Child

Illusion, magic, seduction ... a tangled knot of obedience and betrayal, loss and a desire for vengeance give rise to Isolt's enchantment.

Ahead, an enormous marble palace seemed to rise from the ground. Its polished turrets pierced a darkening sky. Isolt dropped Tarquin’s hand. Her elegant feet refused to take another step.  She wrapped her arms around herself to quell the uncontrollable shivering that possessed her. Tarquin faced her. His face swirled in a spiral. Isolt rubbed her eyes. All this marching. She was exhausted.

He held a key forged from a luminous dark metal in his palm. She let her gaze rise. His shock of blond hair and familiar broad shoulders shushed the foreboding within.

“This is our home,” he said. “Use the key to unlock the door. Please, so we can live here forever.”

With one hand cradling her belly, Isolt reached with the other. The metal was so smooth. So mesmerizing. Clutching the mysterious key, she walked slowly to the palace door. The key practically slipped itself into the lock. As she turned it, she looked back to smile at her beloved king.

He waved her on as she pushed opened the door.

A malignant force gripped her and yanked her within. The air reverberated. The walls of the palace disintegrated.

No one heard her cries.

Her first thought was of her son. There was no way to save him.—Isolt's Enchantment.

Loreena Mckennit sings about faery's and the seduction of a nameless human child in Stolen Child:


Stolen Child lyrics:

Where dips the rocky highland
Of Sleuth Wood in the lake
There lies a leafy island
Where flapping herons wake
The drowsy water-rats
There we've hid our faery vats
Full of berries
And of reddest stolen cherries

Come away, O human child
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand
For the world's more full of weeping
Than you can understand.

Where the wave of moonlight glosses
The dim grey sands with light
By far off furthest Rosses
We foot it all the night
Weaving olden dances
Mingling hands and mingling glances
Till the moon has taken flight
To and fro we leap
And chase the frothy bubbles
Whilst the world is full of troubles
And is anxious in its sleep.


Where the wandering water gushes
From the hills above Glen-Car
In pools among the rushes
That scarce could bathe a star
We seek for slumbering trout
And whispering in their ears
Give them unquiet dreams
Leaning softly out
From ferns that drop their tears
Over the young streams


Away with us he's going
The solemn-eyed
He'll hear no more the lowing
Of the calves on the warm hillside
Or the kettle on the hob
Sing peace into his breast
Or see the brown mice bob
Round and round the oatmeal chest.


For he comes, the human child
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand
For the world's more full of weeping
Than you can understand.
Isolt of the Waters is an ancient water elemental whose betrayal and enchantment has forever changed the Whole. When a young scholar in Idonne discovers her story, along with tales of dwarf magic and the birth of Umbra—a malevolent entity dwelling in the Void—he dreams of a life filled with adventure and heroism.

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Monday, March 5, 2018

Ignorance Is Bliss?

Two stories, two radically different outcomes.

Are we born rooted in the garden (planet Earth)—along with our animal and plant compatriots?
plant communication
If the answer is yes, we can expect/hope for outcomes like this:

What if you could talk to animals and have them talk back to you?

Andrea Breytenbach has dedicated her life to what she calls interspecies communication. She sends detailed messages to animals through pictures and thoughts. She then receives messages of remarkable clarity back from the animals ... the amazing story of how Diabolo became Spirit:

If we believe the answer is no, we can expect/predict more outcomes similar to this:

Endangered Sumatran tiger disemboweled, hung up in Indonesia.

Cats of all shapes and sizes appear throughout Daughter of Light.

The maned visage roared in Celeste’s mind. Etched on a lambent gold shell, harvested from the depths of the Great White Sea, its regal quality drew the mortal woman’s hand. Above all the exquisite rattles on display, the lion’s tawny head resonated most deeply with the hopes she held for her child.—The Stargazer, Isolt's Enchantment

“Come in,” the invitation drifted from the interior.

As Melia crossed the threshold, cats—real ones, not botched spells like Malachi—froze, watching her. She felt as if she were a four-armed, blue-skinned sorceress from Kyrakkos who’d wandered into a crowded bar at Southend. She took another step. The creatures resumed their feline movement—re-curling in their high perches and stretching on the front room’s magenta sofa.
feline friends
A unique fragrance filled the cottage. Vanilla? Cinnamon? She couldn’t quite place it, but it made her want to curl up on one of the sofas, alongside the cats, and take a nap. She forced herself to stand straight.

“Coffee?” The Illustrator’s question came from the back of her studio
Before Melia could answer, the woman returned with two plates. She set them on a table then brushed a fat black cat from its seat. The cat glared at Melia, straightened its tail, and padded from the room. —The Illustrator, Half Faerie

Sinjiin roared.
Tiger, mage, Sinjiin
Flora and Aldous had almost reached the bottom of the stairs. Jade’s arms circled Lola. They were trapped together in the center of the dais. Ryder shielded them, wielding a dagger he’d wrested from a knight. Sinjiin tread a menacing perimeter. Three knights taunted the tiger from a safe distance.

Gavin urged them on.

Melia circled the chamber. Volcanic heat rose like bile in her throat. Sinjiin’s mighty bulk stretched across the dais. Blood stained his fur. Three separate blades pierced his throat, flank, and hindquarters. Their hilts quivered as the tiger gasped for air.

Jade and Aldous knelt beside the large cat. Jade eased the blade from the wound in the tiger’s throat as the elf stemmed the flow of blood with a strip of cloth. Lola hovered over them, batting her hands. Ryder and Flora parried with two knights.

Melia released her anguish in a guttural blast that shook the entire chamber.—The First Battle, Half Mortal

A vast plain of dried grass and brush stretched before him. He sniffed the air: the dust of dry earth, the wet of water—a river, and the blood of a fresh kill. He threw back his head and roared. Overheard, dazzling light punctured a pitch-black sky.

He tore across the plain, his mighty paws kicking up dirt and tiny rocks. Another mighty beast raced by his side, his mate. They pounded the land in unison. By the time they reached the blue wildebeest, the hyena that had killed it was long gone. He crouched to rip a chunk of meat from the dead animal. It was a good night.

After his mate finished eating, they curled around one another and slept deeply.—The Heart of a Lion, War & Grace

I'll leave you with this powerful visual and instrumental tribute to all felines, freedom, and nature, John Barry's Born Free.

And if you've never heard the lyrics:

Born free, as free as the wind blows
As free as the grass grows
Born free to follow your heart

Live free and beauty surrounds you
The world still astounds you
Each time you look at a star

Stay free, where no walls divide you
You're free as the roaring tide
So there's no need to hide

Born free, and life is worth living
But only worth living
'Cause you're born free

(Stay free, where no walls divide you)
You're free as the roaring tide
So there's no need to hide

Born free, and life is worth living
But only worth living
'Cause you're born free