Tag Archives: Magic’s Stealing

The Shadow War – Launch Day!

After an extra month of waiting, The Shadow War is finally here! It’s the second book of The Wishing Blade series, so if you’ve been wondering what happens next, that wait is over!

*Squee!*

I’m both excited and nervous with this one. For this one, we get to see Daernan’s point of view for a large part of the story (60%, to be exact), and we get one short scene from Siklana at the end. But don’t worry, Toranih and Shevanlagiy also get their fair share of scenes, too. Not only that, but we get glimpses of both Maijevan and Cantingen cultures, and the bit of rivalry that might be brewing between the various countries and cities. 😉

So, without further ado…

The Wishing Blade - Section Break - Magic Swirl

The Shadow War

Upper MG / Lower YA

The Wishing Blade - Section Break - Magic Swirl

The Shadow War - Book Cover

The Wishing Blade - Section Break - Magic Swirl

Though a shadow is as good as a ghost, with no free will to speak of, they may still be saved…

The kingdom of Cirena is under attack from an army of shadows—beings who can only be hurt by magic or fire. Magic has been stolen, and as the shadows spread, infecting all they touch, the last two ribbon mages race to the nearest port city to warn them of the impending invasion. One of those mages, Toranih, is among the few who can see the Trickster-cursed army, and she’s determined to get magic back—no matter how much she distrusts it. When she is captured by shadows and a dark secret is revealed about her future, her best friend, Daernan, is left to defend the city. But his only methods of stopping the shadows are by fire and the devastating magic of the shodo’charl.

With the knowledge that the shadows are innocent townsfolk forced to do a warlord’s bidding, Daernan must choose between saving the shadows or saving those who have not yet turned.

The Wishing Blade - Section Break - Magic Swirl

Now Available!

Amazon US ~ Amazon UKBN.com ~ iTunes ~ KoboSmashwords

Paperback Edition

Add to Goodreads

The Wishing Blade - Section Break - Magic Swirl

A sneak peek…

The roof afforded a smoky view of the burning courthouse and the surrounding mayhem, and here Daernan understood the madness of the shadows. As their victims faded, turning into shadowy wisps, they, too, turned on the crowd. The more the shadows converted, the faster the crowd disappeared.

No wonder they used the explosions. People in the affected areas fled from their homes and the markets, trying to evacuate because the smoke in the distance meant the whole southern side of the city might be burning. But the ghostly shadows waited for them with impromptu weapons, and the refugees fled right into their hands.

“It’s so easy for them,” Daernan whispered. “Lord Menchtoteale found a simple way to conscript his army.”

Siklana frowned as she dug the shodo’charl free from the bag and passed him the stone. “What are they doing?”

“Using the explosions to force people from their homes.” Daernan reached to take the bundle, then stopped. Siklana’s brown eyes were wide with worry, her lips forming an unhappy frown. He quickly turned away and clasped the oilskin tight in his fingers. There were so many shadows. If he released the stone now, he might be killing countless innocent people. But if he didn’t release the stone’s magic, more would be trapped.

“Should we do this?” he asked softly.

Siklana peered over the ledge. “You’re asking me?”

He whispered a soft prayer to Madiya—primarily because she was responsible for taking the dead through her realm—but he fervently hoped he was wrong. Hoped that somehow, some way, the shodo’charl did not kill them.

He hooked his fingers under the oilskin, trembling, already feeling the cold sweat forming on his neck and soaking his back. To do this . . . if he killed them . . . he wasn’t sure how he was going to sleep. How he was going to account for their deaths? But the longer he waited, the more who would die when he finally released the oilskin.

The Wishing Blade - Section Break - Magic Swirl

Enjoy! Feel free to tell your friends, or anyone you think might enjoy the book. 😀

4 Comments

Filed under Business Ventures, Writing

Book Signing – February 25th

A quick update…

Isaac and I will be participating in a book signing at the new Reader’s World in Warrensburg, MO, on Saturday, February 25th from 1 – 3 pm. (See their Facebook page here). There will be several local authors also signing their books, so there’s a bit of something for everyone. Isaac and I will have Magic’s Stealing and Distant Horizon available. Feel free to stop by! 🙂

Click on the covers to find out more about the books:

Distant Horizon - Book CoverSBibb - Magic's Stealing Cover

 

In other news, we’re just about done getting new cards ready for Battle Decks, as well as preparing a new game to demo at Stealth Con. And I’m in the process of proofreading The Shadow War before formatting it (updated release day is March 16th). 🙂

Leave a comment

Filed under Business Ventures, Writing

The Shadow War – Now Available for Pre-Order

If you enjoyed reading Magic’s Stealing, then good news! The pre-order for the next book in the series, The Shadow War, is now avilable for pre-order!

The book is still in progress (The Shadow War has been through three beta readers, and now Isaac is reading it), but I expect to have it completed by February 2017. Actually, I’m hoping to have it done sooner, but being realistic, I’m trying to give myself a bit more time to complete the project. Once it’s finished, The Shadow War will probably be about 47,000 words long, though the final word count may vary.

Since I was running the promotion for “Stone and String” on Kindle (a short story set in the world of The Wishing Blade), I wanted to make sure I had the second book of The Wishing Blade series available to pre-order. The series starts with Magic’s Stealing, and continues in The Shadow War.

Now, for the book cover!

The Wishing Blade - Section Break - Magic Swirl

The Shadow War

Young Adult / Middle Grade Fantasy

The Wishing Blade - Section Break - Magic Swirl

The Shadow War - Book Cover

The Wishing Blade - Section Break - Magic Swirl

 

The kingdom of Cirena is under attack from an army of shadows—beings who can only be hurt by magic or fire. But magic has been stolen, and as the shadows spread, infecting all they touch, the last two ribbon mages race to the nearest port city to warn them of the impending invasion. One of those mages, Toranih, is among the few who can see the Trickster-cursed army, and she’s determined to get magic back—no matter how much she distrusts it. But when she is captured by shadows and a secret is revealed about her future, her only chance of survival may be to fight the shadows from within.

Available for Pre-Order:

Amazon US ~ Amazon UKBN.com ~ iTunes ~ KoboSmashwords

Add to Goodreads

The Wishing Blade - Section Break - Magic Swirl

Enjoy! 😀

Leave a comment

Filed under Business Ventures, Writing

Thoughts on Writing – A Blurb for The Shadow War

I’m preparing to create the pre-order page for The Shadow War, the second book of The Wishing Blade series. I’m still in the editing phases, and it’s going to be a little while before it releases (I’m planning to set the release date for February, though I’m hoping to release it sooner). But I want to have the page up before I do the Stone and String freebie days from Kindle Select.

Before I can create the page, however, I want to have a blurb ready (those dreaded, tricky things that entice readers to buy the book). The Shadow War is a YA/Middle Grade fantasy novella (47,000 words), the second of The Wishing Blade series. (You can read the blurb for the first book by clicking here).

So I’ve been thinking about a blurb, and this is what I’ve come up with:

The kingdom of Cirena is under attack from an army of shadows—beings who can only be hurt by magic or fire. But magic has been stolen, and as the shadows spread, infecting all they touch, the last two ribbon mages race to the nearest port city to warn them of the impending invasion. One of those mages, Toranih, is among the few who can even see the Trickster-cursed army, and she’s determined to get magic back—no matter how much she distrusts it. But when she gets captured by the shadows and a secret is revealed about her future, her only chance of survival may be to fight the shadows from within.

While this may be what I use for my initial post of the pre-order page, I want to make sue it works in the long run. So my questions for you are these:

  1. Is the blurb intriguing?
  2. Does it reveal too much? Too little?
  3. Does it show clear goals and motivations?
  4. If you’ve read Magic’s Stealing, does it interest you in reading The Shadow War?
  5. If you haven’t read Magic’s Stealing, does it interest you in learning more or looking inside either of the books?

Thanks for your input! I appreciate it! 😀

I hope you find this post helpful for your own writings. What pitfalls have you run into when writing a blurb?

Leave a comment

Filed under Writing

Thoughts on Publishing – “Stone and String” Unboxing

It’s been a while since I’ve uploaded a video blog post, but I received my print copies of “Stone and String” today (a day early!) and wanted to do the unboxing. So I’ve got a quick announcement about the Infinitas Publishing booth at Burg Fest, the upcoming dates regarding Distant Horizon, and the first look at the print copies of “Stone and String.” Check out the video below, and I hope you enjoy it. 🙂

 

Click here if you can’t see the video.

Leave a comment

Filed under Business Ventures, Writing

Thoughts on Writing – How A Deleted Scene Turned into A Short Story Idea

Hello, again! I realize I’ve been silent for awhile, and I thought I’d give a quick update. See, I’m sort of between projects. Distant Horizon is being read by a proofreader, and I’ve gotten notes back for The Shadow War… and I apparently have a few plot holes that need to be addressed before  I can make much progress. That, and I finally finished the beta-reading project I’ve been long overdue on!

But that left me in writing-limbo. It’s not like I don’t have a bunch of projects to work on. (Trust me, I’ve got plenty of rough drafts begging to be polished). But I didn’t want to start anything big until my two main projects were finished.

And, well, I’ve been reading a lot about short stories and the concept of short stories and then I kind of decided… why not write a short story while I’m waiting?

It started with edits to The Shadow War. One concern had to do with the numerous point of view shifts. There are two characters in particular who had scenes, but, upon second look, I realized might not add much to the story itself (Never mind that I thoroughly enjoyed them).

My first thought was to take one of those scenes (since I rarely delete anything, I copied them into a separate document before removing them from the book) and flesh it into a short story from the point of view of one of the antagonists or semi-antagonists.

Problem with that was two-fold. First… spoilers. All the spoilers. There would be no way around it with the scenes I wanted to write. Second… background details that I wasn’t ready to explore. There’s a highly-detailed world behind The Wishing Blade, and not all the details have been worked out. The ones pertaining to the main plot are mostly in place, but some of the ‘how did this character get here‘ have not.

So I pushed those ideas out for now (Someday I want to write a novel or novella that looks at the antagonists of the series. I could have so much fun with their stories).

Instead, I started looking at areas in the world which interest me, but have nothing to do with the main story. Or, well… are only vaguely related. In this case, the Cantingen Islands. Remember that word magic conlang I’ve been working on? It features heavily in the rough draft of the third book, but from an outsider’s perspective. But I’ve wanted to do more with it, and actually take a look at their mythology and culture.

Enter the short story idea for Stone and String (tentative title). My goal was to write a short story between 5,000 to 10,000 words, with a cohesive beginning, middle, and end. And that goal has been achieved, completing the story at 8,000 words!

The story takes place in the Cantingen Islands, around the time of Magic’s Stealing but not tied to any of the main characters. It explores word magic to a degree, but focuses heavily on their afterlife, as the main character is a young girl who trades her death magic for a chance to see her little sister after an accident kills her.

The story is off to beta-readers now, but I’m hoping that edits go smoothly and I can publish it here in the next couple months. Hopefully it will tide readers over until I can finish The Shadow War.

If people enjoy it, I may write more short stories following the particular character. If not… well, it’s a stand-alone, so it won’t leave anyone on a cliffhanger.

Now, the caveat is that I plan on releasing the short story through Kindle Select so that it can be placed in Kindle Unlimited. Which means, at least for a few months, it won’t be available outside of Amazon. I’m curious to see if it might bring new readers to the series.

But the main books will continue to be available through multiple channels, as I prefer not to have all my eggs in one basket.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this post! Have you tried using Kindle Select, or had luck writing stand-alone short stories? 🙂

Leave a comment

Filed under Business Ventures, Writing

Thoughts on Writing – Fixing a Derailed Plot

While working on the third book of The Wishing Blade series (I’m writing the rough draft for Camp NaNoWriMo) I ran into a snag. I knew how the book should end, but I wasn’t sure how to get it there.

Without getting into too many spoilers (since the second book isn’t even out yet!) I can say that the three main characters have been split into two groups (not by choice). Toranih’s off dealing with the shadows directly, while Daernan and Siklana are trying to get to Soralsyn (a place where magic doesn’t like to play nice). They’re following Nihestan, a mage they don’t really trust, in hopes of getting glass-stone, a precious material that might help them defeat the shadows. But Nihestan decides they need training first–whether they want it or not.

Now, this whole training thing was running too long. Siklana was attempting to learn word magic and getting nowhere because Nihestan doesn’t trust her, and he is actively trying to slow her progress. Then Kirse’Ve, an immortal companion tagging along with them (who isn’t quite as blind-sided as Nihestan), decides to take Siklana to Soralsyn on his own, in hopes of clarifying some of his own suspicions.

In the meantime, Daernan is stuck learning how to use magic’s lure from an uppity god of wine and merriment. Since the god decides that the best way to make someone who doesn’t want to use magic’s lure is to use magic and force him to practice, the concept was starting to run too similar to another story line I’m working on. That… and the god of wine and merriment was starting to feel just a little too similar to the trickster god.

With those arcs in place, the plot was getting nowhere.

I discussed the problems with my husband, Isaac, who pointed out two things that helped me make the necessary changes.

  1. Don’t have Kirse’Ve take Siklana to Soralsyn so early in the plot. Since it’s supposed to be difficult to get to Soralsyn, having him fly there on a whim cheapens the danger. (Plus, having him refuse to take her earlier, on the grounds they aren’t prepared, raises the tension as she tries to convince them to go).
  2. Make it clear that Nihestan doesn’t plan on reuniting Daernan and Siklana with Toranih (quite the opposite, he thinks she’s the enemy and needs to die). This raises further tension between the characters.

Both concepts were important as I tried to run through a mini-synopsis in my head–especially when I came to the point where, (yay, pantsing), Daernan and Siklana decide they’re going to sneak off without the mage and go to Soralsyn on their own.

Bingo!

At that point, I realized a bit of rearranging would help the plot. Kirse’Ve isn’t going to take Siklana to Soralsyn on his own, thus leading to more frustration and the final decision that they need to leave.

The earlier plot point I had regarding Daernan’s training is also going to be changed. His trainer isn’t going to force him to use magic’s lure (at least, not directly), but he does show such a disregard for mortals that Daernan is absolutely ready to leave the moment Siklana suggests they go off on their own.

Since Nihestan seems dead-set on killing Toranih, now they have a ticking clock because they need to figure out how to fight the shadows before he does if they even want to get close to her.

And perhaps, once they get themselves lost in Soralsyn (because it is supposed to be difficult to navigate), Kirse’Ve, who’s a bit wiser in how to treat them, comes to their aid–but not without a price. He’s on the same side as the mage who wants to kill Toranih, and he sees the means to do so based on what our heroes learn (but hey, they aren’t lost anymore!).

Now it feels like I know how to get the story on track, and I’m ready to move on to plotting what’s happening with Toranih.

With a little rearranging and a few tweaks to how the plot plays out, you might find that it’s easier to get a derailed plot back on track than you might first think.

I hope you enjoyed this post. Have you ever run into a derailed plot that was fixable with a few tweaks? 🙂

Leave a comment

Filed under Writing