Whoops

Sorry for the lack of updates for the past few weeks. My better half came home from a month away working, so I’ve been a bit preoccupied with seeing him as of late.

The other day I was walking around at work, as I do, and I was struck with inspiration work seems to be the best place to find inspiration – I wonder why that is. I’ve wanted for a while now to expand on the First Men in the world of Changeling – the ancients to the people of modern Cyril who are like the Romans to us. Ruins of their civilization dot the countryside, and modern culture and government is built on their foundation. So I came up with a bit of a plan. I might write a novel (once I power through all the other work I have to do with WIPs) about one of the last kings of the First Men. It’s going to be brutal and bloody, because it will be set in the peak of their conquering. I’m pretty excited about it, myself. The past is always fascinating.

I’m also going to write another collection of short stories to go between Changeling and Abomination, as a partner anthology to The Time Between. The current working title is Paint Them All Red. It will take place in Canton during the Reclamation, when Sophia Henson conquered the country after the death of her father. So I’m pretty excited about that too.

Anyhow. That’s basically a brief update from my end. How’s everything else going in the interwebz?

Songs of the Earth: a book review

Songs_of_the_Earth_Tor

Gair is under a death sentence. He can hear the music of the earth – music with power – and in the Holy City that means only one thing: he’s a witch, and he’s going to be burned t the stake. Even if he could escape, the Church Knights and their witchfinder would be hot on his heels, while his burgeoning power threatens to tear him apart from within…

Songs of the Earth by Elspeth Cooper is an epic fantasy of, according to a Library Journal review, A Song of Ice and Fire proportions. It was an extensive story with a unique setting, and a very interesting and intricate magical system. It was a good read altogether, but it was one of the most confusing books I’ve read in a very long time. Let me explain why: Continue reading

The Subtleties of Magic: Changeling teaser

Leto left the holies’ cave in a numb haze. Snow began to fall while he was inside the cave, but he barely noticed it as the flakes obscured his vision and soaked the shoulders of his tunic.

The magic of the world could rip. He never pretended to have understood magic beyond his specialty, but if someone had suggested this earlier, he would have thought it ridiculous. It seemed like such a steady thing, like a flowing river.

But rivers had bends and falls, didn’t they? Even the wisest of holies and scholars didn’t truly understand how magic worked; why some people were born with spirits and some weren’t; how a specialization was determined; what originally gave them the power to use it in the first place. It was as enigmatic now as it had been when it was first utilized by the ancients. So why couldn’t it be rent in two? Before the beasts began to act erratically, no one would have thought it possible, but what did they really know? Continue reading

Parental Embarrassment: Changeling teaser

Holding back the eager power of his own spirit, Alistair closed the rest of the distance between them, and his son’s spirit came into view.

“Spirits, Father. You’re a wolf!”

“You too? Good. I’m glad it isn’t just Aisling who sees it that way.” Alistair peered at the creature sitting timidly in front of him. “You are… odd-looking.”

The thing lifted its forepaws and looked around as if seeing itself for the first time. “Why? What am I?”

Alistair frowned and let out a groan. “Oh, I know the name. You know in all those Cyrille and Althaean fauna books your grandmother gave you when you were a boy?”

The thing put its forepaws down and its nose and whiskers twitched. “Yes…” Continue reading

A basic writer Q & A

Because they can be insightful, because I have nothing better to do that’s a lie, I should be developing the world of Changeling more, or writing more Abomination, or editing Purity, or starting on the rewrite of Of the Arbour, or–

And hey, maybe it’ll give everyone else more of an idea of just why I do what I do, and where this all comes from.

Taken from the deviantART page of Elisa Nuckle.
1. When did you start writing?

I’ve been writing stories for most of my life. I cleaned out my closet recently and discovered so many little half-baked stories that I’d come up with when I was younger than ten. I’ve known I’ve wanted to be an author since I was 13, but only recently have taken the major steps toward that goal, and actually written something worth publication.

2. When you were a beginning writer, what did your write primarily? What do you write now, primarily?  (i.e. romance, fan-fiction, poetry)

I wrote plenty of Star Wars fanfiction that will never see the light of day. From there, I began to write sci fi stories that were based closely on Star Wars. In grade seven, a friend and I wrote a novel about vampires called Tears of Blood, which was completely scrapped save for one character: Fane, the son of Dracula, who now resides in Purity. I now usually write fantasy, high and epic. Continue reading

Fantasy is ever-evolving

When I first started writing Changeling, the story was set on a single continent: Cyril. It was, like much fantasy, a decidedly medieval European setting – of the thirteen territories, five are based on England, one on France, one on Scotland, one on Wales, one on Poland/Czech Republic, one on Greece, and one on English colonies. Then as the story progressed, I added a second continent, which was based on Indian and Arabic settings of the real world; this was called Kriss.

Imagination progressed, as it is apt to do, and a third continent was imagined: Althaea. Although none of Changeling is set on Althaea, references are made to the culture to the east, and it is mentioned in passing. Althaea is based on German and Native American cultures, as well as English colonies, because the people of Cyril have shipped across the sea to try to claim it as their own.

So here I am, 70 000+ words into Changeling’s sequel, Abomination, and out of the blue while I’m working, I come up with a fourth continent idea, the tentative name of which is Thörstaag.

It, obviously, will be based on Norse and Scandinavian cultures. Continue reading

Naming a book

And what a bloody process it is.

The title of the book is, obviously, one of the most important parts of the writing process itself. If you have a stupid name, despite how good the book may be, people are going to judge it and be less likely to pick it up or buy it.

Being that I work in a bookstore, I encounter some pretty heinous book titles quite often. Namely, romance and mystery titles. They’re often punny or just straight up ridiculous.

Ideally, you would name your book something enticing that relates well with the plot or characters. For example, my favourite book, Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon, is called Outlander because the main character, Claire Randall, is nicknamed Sassenach by her confidante Jamie Fraser; Sassenach is a Scots Gaelic word meaning, you guessed it, outlander (at worst; at best, it means Englishman, which Claire also is).  Continue reading