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Friday, May 22, 2015

Jaye L. Knight: Half-Blood

EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! JACE! *clap hand over mouth* *clear throat* Sorry about that...
BUT THIS. IS. AWESOME!!!
If you haven't read Ilyon Chronicles yet, you should. I can't describe it without using the words, "amazing," "gripping," "soul-wrenching," "real," and did I say "amazing" already? :D
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Check out the cover of Jaye L. Knight’s upcoming novella, Half-Blood, and learn about this prequel story to Ilyon Chronicles! Make sure you also enter the giveaway at the bottom!
Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00026]

About the Book

The gasps and murmuring grew. Though some were hardly more than whispers, clear words reached Jace’s ears—dangerous, monster, animal, soulless. He tried to back away from their accusing eyes, but the collar pulled hard against his throat and held him in place.

For all his years as a slave, Jace has known nothing but the hatred people hold for his mixed blood—one half human, the other half the blood of a race considered monsters. Always, he is the outsider and quickly learns it is better to keep to himself. But, when his volatile ryrik blood leads him to do the unthinkable, he is thrown into a world of violence and bloodshed.

Forced to become a gladiator, Jace finds more and more of his heart dying as his master works to break down his will not to become the monster everyone believes he is. When a stranger interferes with his master’s harsh punishment, Jace’s world is upended yet again. But with it comes the possibility of hope that has long since died. Could the man possibly hold the key to escaping the hopeless darkness that is Jace’s life? Is there such a thing as life beyond the cruelty of slavery?

See where Jace’s story all began . . .

Coming This Summer
goodreads

About the Author

JayeAuthorPhotoJaye L. Knight is an award-winning author, homeschool graduate, and shameless tea addict with a passion for Christian fantasy. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God’s love shines as a light to offer hope. She has been penning stories since the age of eight and resides in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.

You can connect with Jaye on her website, blog, Facebook, Google+, and Twitter.



Giveaway

As part of a month long celebration for the one year publication anniversary of Resistance (Ilyon Chronicles - Book 1), Jaye is giving away several fun prizes! Enter for a chance to win using the form below! U.S. entries only please.




Friday, May 15, 2015

Character Encounters

I found out about this thing called Character Encounters via Dreams and Dragons, and it sounded neat, so I've decided to go ahead and participate. :)
The Character Encounters come from Knitted by God's Plan.
 
There's not a park that's actively featured in my story, so I brought one of the characters (from True Heroes) out into my world. Without further ado...

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A playground. Who am I going to meet at a playground? Only one of my characters would have motivation to go to a park for socialization, and he’s busy on a role play thread. Most of them are, actually…
The evening sun colors the clouds various shades of orange and pink. A breeze kicks up, and shakes the tops of the cottonwood trees.
On my trek across the park, I pass by the skate bowl (a couple guys look at me; my nervousness kicks in and I fidget past), the restrooms (and nearly collide with a couple of bikers going way too fast around the curve), a pavilion, and arrive at one of the playgrounds. The munchkin-sized pink and purple slides, swings, and stairs are devoid of their intended occupants.
I continue on and arrive at the exercise “park.” Yellow bars, blue benches. A chart with health tips and instructions for the seven pieces of equipment there.
And…
“Oh, hey! You!” I smile at the character, who is barely noticeable, sitting beneath a small pine.
A boy of about thirteen years leaps to his feet. His jacket hood catches on the low branches, and pulls back to reveal a ski mask. Brown eyes jerk between me and his progress at disentangling himself from the tree.
I take a step forward. “Hey, calm down. I’m not going to kill you.”
He chuckles, an “I don’t believe you” look written on what little I can see of his face. His voice wavers between a tenor and soprano. “Can you…turn around? Please?”
With a shrug, I say, “Alright.”
Grunts and slight tearing sounds reach my ears. “Um, are you okay?”
“I’m fine! Just give me a minute…there! You can look now.”
I shake my head and turn. Then I slap a palm to my forehead. The boy—Fireblast—is in costume.
A white jumpsuit. With stitched on flames (or are they supposed to be explosions?) covering nearly the entire thing. Red leather gloves. Aaand a really, really tight red mask with opaque eye holes.
My hand slowly drags down the length of my face. “Seriously?”
“What? I can’t let anyone know who I am, so…”
 “You thought that dressing like that would make you less noticeable or something?”
Clacks and stifled laughter sound. I turn and see a company of several skateboarders. They say nothing to us, but I swear that I can hear laughing mumbles about “cosplay” and (an impolite phrase for) “botched” when they pass.
 My face reddens. I turn back to him quickly. “And I thought you didn’t care about the Deputy’s rules.”
Fireblast steps out from his no-longer-so-great hiding place behind the tree. He puts his hands on his hips and kicks at the border between the park foam and grass. “Well, I care about that one. I don’t want anyone to recognize me.”
I think that’s more memorable than regular clothing, but whatever.
“Dude…” I sigh. “Never mind. Anyways, how’re you doing?” I walk over to the nearest piece of equipment with a slab of latticed plastic and sit on it. Fireblast follows, his head swiveling until I swear he’s going to go owl and rotate it 360 degrees.
“Fine, I guess. Besides not being able to have any interaction with anyone but my fellow inmates, living in cold, artificial metal rooms all day, and practicing setting people’s rear ends on fire by night, I’m golden.”
I lean back on the bench (which doesn’t have a back) and reach for the grass. “You forgot to mention your free time in the afternoon.”
My character laughs nervously. “What do you mean? I go straight to my room, same as everyone else.”
“Uh-huh.” I sit back up and twiddle with blades of grass.
There is silence for a time. Then, “Alright! So I’m going out into the city. What’s wrong with living for a few hours?”
“Other than disobeying direct authority and putting both yourself and your ‘fellow inmates’ in danger of being discovered?” I raise my eyebrows.
The wind pushes clouds over the sun. I tug my jacket closer around me.
Fireblast crosses his arms. “When you put it like that…” He flops his hands down to his sides in frustration. “Look, all I want is to be a hero! ‘Naptime’ is the only chance I have to get out there and be that.”
Before I speak, I look at the ground. “But you’re not being a hero.”
“What?!”
“You’re putting lives in danger.”
“What do you mean?”
How much should I tell him?
I bite my lip. “The Council has a way of running things…”
He snorts. “Yeah. They do. Oppression and lies.”
“And their own version of order. Licenses, approval, papers. Everyone in the city follows their plans like a script.”
He stares at me. “So you’re saying…that…what, exactly?”
“Council. Licenses. Script. Think about it.”
He grips his head. “Ow, owowow…” After a minute or two of him thinking, he looks at me. “You’re saying that none of it is ‘real’?”
I nod.
“I never thought I’d do this to you, but…” He does a clumsy flip over the bench and stands behind me.
I groan and put my head in my hands. “It’s not going to work.”
“We’ll see. Liar, liar,” he begins, “pants on…” A pause, during which I know he’s pointing at me. “…fire.”
Nothing happens.
Fireblast exclaims, “Aw, man!”
That strange, out-of-nowhere, maniacal urge to giggle builds up inside my chest. I choke on it.
“What? It’s not enough that the entire reality I thought I knew is now shattered, you have to laugh about my powers?”
Unable to stop myself, I double over and nearly fall off the bench. My entire body shakes. At first, there is no sound. Then a high-pitched, roiling, scream-like laughter. I fall off the bench, holding my middle and wishing I wasn’t laughing so hard. It hurts my sides…
Fireblast says something, but I can’t hear him because I’m laughing so loudly.
I’m able to (not really) contain myself. Tears stream down my face, and I’m still resisting the urge to all-out laugh.
“So…sor…sorry…about…that.”
I can barely see Fireblast through my tears and fogged up contact lenses; he looks like a blur of messy color.
“I…just…” I gasp for breath. “It’s just…aaaa, I can’t help it!” As I speak, I dissolve into another fit of laughter (though it’s not nearly as loud as the first.)
“Alright, I get it! You find my powers hilariously lame. Can you stop?”
No reaction from me other than more laughter.
“Um…can you stop?”
I manage to gasp, “No!”
He waits.
Eventually, I stop, gasping for breath. “Okay, okay, I’m done.” I clear my throat and wipe my eyes.
Fireblast raises an eyebrow. “You sure?”
“Yeah. In all seriousness…” With a sigh and a few grunts, I rearrange myself and sit in a cross-legged position. “I know you want to be a hero. But what if being a hero isn’t—”
“What I was meant to be?” He tries to lower the pitch of his voice, but it…doesn’t work. He prods a finger against his chest. “I’ve heard that before, and I’m not buying it!”
“Are you going to let me finish?”
My super pauses, and I can tell that his face is nearly as red as the mask it’s beneath. “That’s…not what you were going to say?”
I shake my head.
“Oh. Sorry.” He sits down on the bench. “Please continue.”
“I was going to say, what if being a hero isn’t what you think it is? What if being a hero means doing something that goes against what you’ve always believed?”
He scoffs. “Well, you already took care of that last part. I guess…I’d do my best. Same as always. Not that it does much.”
“Hey, despite—in addition to—your, uh…unique power, you contribute something.”
“It’s definitely not knowledge, strength, or anything like that! And that’s all the useful stuff…”
There’s a smile (that’s not as insane as my earlier ones) on my face. “I have another question for you.”
“Shoot. It’s not like you can break my reality any more than you already have.”
“If you weren’t dressed like a circus clown—”
“Hey!”
“—what’s something you do very, very well?”
He leans back and shrugs. “I don’t know. Eat?”
“Sneak. And I have a feeling that you’re more of a people person than you’re letting on.”
“How would I know? I don’t exactly get out much.”
“Well, next time you’re out, why don’t you try? Talk to the first person you come across—hero or villain. See what happens.”
Fireblast stares at me as if I just said something unbelievable. “Wait, you’re not going to stop me?”
“Nope.”

He shakes for a second, then leaps to his feet, shouting, “Alright!”
Fireblast does a few fist pumps, a little jig, then shakes one of my arms enthusiastically. "Thankyouthankyouthankyou!"
I chuckle. "No problem. Now...can you put on a regular outfit?"
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Hope you enjoyed reading! Any questions, comments? Let me know what you think. :)

Thursday, May 14, 2015

About the Story: The Races: General

My chronicler (Robby) only recently arrived and helped me find the book about the races of Ciraven. He has a lot of records... ;)

The following entries are from the latest edition of Robby's writings, and include the basic information for the main races.

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Races
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Dragons: An intelligent race (the first race to be created) with many different forms. The leviathan, the ones who dwell in the water. The behemoth, those who dwell on the earth. The Wyvern, rulers of the sky.
Finally, there are dragonlings; a rare generation of dragon hatchling that possesses a human form in addition to their dragon form.
Dragonlings are meant to be protectors of humans.
Dragons were created to be healers, helpers, and givers of wisdom.
(For information on the subtleties and abilities of each species, search their names under Nuance.)
...
Humans: The last and most diverse people to be created. They are by far the most adaptable and imaginative of the races.
These were created to rule this world named after our Creator, and to worship Him.
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Scavengers: Mutations of Seekers; were not part of the original creation. Are spirits that can take on the appearance of the physical, but are unable to be touched by races such as humans.
Since their fall from the role of Seeker, they have been assigned with the task of collecting and guiding the souls of those fallen in battle.
Seekers: These are companions of humans, and often take on the form of a large dog. They were created to guide and advise  humans in times of trouble.
...
Vampires: One of the species of the Children of the Night [...have incorporeal forms that solidify in the moonlight].  They are proficient in metal-craft [some in architecture]...
Created to be a wonder and teacher of humans [in their arts].
...
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(Just so you don't freak out and say something along the lines of, "Vampires?! Created for wonder?! And you call yourself a Christian!":
My vampires are like humans in the sense that some can be good, some can be bad. They can use the abilities given them to further their purpose of creation, or twist and magnify/diminish them so that they accomplish a purpose of their own design.
I'll do a short Nuances post on the races mentioned here sometime next week.)

Let me know what you think! :)

Friday, May 8, 2015

Draven's Light

I was given an influencer copy of Draven's Light, I finished reading it, and now I'm doing a blog post on it. :)
Note: the following is going to be more fan-girl raving than anything. If you'd like, you can read a more organized review of mine on Goodreads.

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My eyes were watering like crazy (and no, I didn't have an onion) when I finished. It was beautiful! *sob*

I loved the sibling relationship (no surprise there ;)), and the intimacy/conflict that arose from it.
Ita is a strong one.
Draven is a "coward".
They both care for each other deeply, enough to sacrifice their lives. They are also willing to push aside their fears/discomforts in order to help the other.
Then there's the "ungentle" side of the relationship. ;)
Sometimes, Ita gives Draven a few kicks (literally) to get him going.

What really caught my attention was the difference in the telling. Akilun tells the tale for the most part, but it starts out from the view of a cowardly girl. I loved it. The reason for that is because you can see both ends of the story play out and fit together (without having to wait for a sequel).

Speaking of the Brothers Ashiun...*fan girl squeal*
The Brother's Ashiun!! The Faerie brothers! The wielders of Halisa and Asha!
No, the story doesn't focus on them, but it does feature them building a House of Light. It was just so great to have them actively featured (together) in a story!

What else to love? Let's see...
The little explanation about who/what Guta is (I don't know about anyone else, but I've always wondered.)
Ita's disability; a club foot. It really heightened the way her character was portrayed. A "wolf pup," who has to sometimes rely on others to help her. She knows when she needs the help, but that doesn't mean she likes it.
Draven. I already said that he was called a coward, but that's not what I saw. I saw a hero. I would like to say more about why I think he was a hero, but I'm afraid that explanation would have a few too many spoilers. So you'll just have to read the book and see for yourself.
The ending. Normally, I don't like endings (because that means the end of the story :( ), but with Goldstone Wood, there's always more to be told. That, and this is a bit of the history of the world, so you know that there's more after in the timeline. ;)
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There's my two cents on Draven's Light (which you can pre-order on Amazon.) Hope you enjoyed reading it! :)

Saturday, May 2, 2015

End of Camp Nano

I meant to write up a post about this yesterday, but I didn't have time, so here it is now!

My goal for this session was to work on True Hearts, and to get an outline (30,000 words) done. I did it! Sure, I validated my word count at eleven o'clock, but I did it! ;)

I tortured my characters (mainly in the Character's Corner thread), racked my brain, and otherwise stressed about getting my outline finished.

The synopsis changed a little bit:

The daughter of a dragonling seeks atonement for her past failures by traveling through her world's time and repairing rifts caused by a runaway princess.

The princess is a character of mine who, originally, wasn't going to do much. Other than be there for the guy who was the original hero of the story. And she wasn't even supposed to be a princess!
Now...now she's being a pain in the butt. (BTW, the "hero" changed, too, and does almost nothing other than be a stereotypical cartoon superhero. Complete with stupid fighting moves. "Oh, I didn't know the bad guy was going to move!" *propels self off rooftop into trap that only cartoon bad guys are supposed to fall into*)
*sigh* Characters. Love-hate relationship. They change everything. :P

I will be doing a post that goes into some information about my world sometime within the next week. (I'll tell what a dragonling is, the various species in the world, etc.)
I'm going to shoot for a Wednesday post, but if RL interferes, I'll have to post it later.

How have your characters rebelled on you? Was it a good thing?

Friday, May 1, 2015

Fractal Friday

Update: Fractal Fridays are going to be sporadic, but at least twice a month. Friday keeps coming up too fast for me to come up with good snippets to share. :P


Don't go looking for fame with your book. You'll get nowhere meaningful.
If you start out trying to make money from your book, if that is the only goal in mind, your writing will suffer for it. Instead of writing a convincing story with memorable characters, story line, and a plot that makes the reader think, you'll end up with words alone.

Don't seek the glory of man for yourself. Seek the glory of your Creator, who gave you the mind to seek, the heart to find, and the hands to write. Then get off your rear, fight your fear, and publish the words He gave you. :)