Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Introducing: Zeb Stream

Zeb is good friends with Rachaya in The Rachaya Series.

Zeb is a water dragon, and yet it is his greatest wish to be able to fly. He doesn't care if this makes him weird, the thrill of being in the air is worth any jibe that may come his way. Zeb is often the peace-keeper between the more fiery dragons in his friendship group. He is the best friend of Morhol and often keeps him grounded.

Hobbies: dreaming about flying,

Appearance: Like all water dragons, Zeb is rather rotund. He has a large, square face and innocent eyes. He almost always wears a cheerful expression.

Key qualities: Zeb is happy-go-lucky and friendly, always looking at the bright side to any given situation.

Elemental type: Water dragon

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Introducing: Morhol Ash

Morhol is a close friend of Rachaya in The Rachaya Series.

Morhol comes from a some-what disgraced family in Perfero Village. He often has to steal to support his mother, and he knows what it is like to go to bed hungry. He is fiercely loyal to his friends, often placing himself in front of them if he ever perceives any hint of danger.

Hobbies: eating, reading, eating, hanging out with his best friend, Zeb, and eating.

Appearance: Morhol has dark features with rather thick eyebrows. His is of average build.

Key qualities: Morhol will always be the first to join you in a fight and is not afraid to put his body on the line. He is intensely intelligent, and uses this to help his friends.

Elemental type: Fire dragon

Image source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/7a/Ch_Bale_02.jpg/170px-Ch_Bale_02.jpg

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Introducing: Nazish Cinder

Nazish is the best friend of Rachaya in The Rachaya Series.

Call her Nazish and you can expect a decent sized bruise to appear on your arm. Her name is Naz.

Naz was held back a year at Wyvold the Fierce School for Dragons because she cannot learn to meditate properly. She is also super clumsy and regularly sports a black eye from her weaponry class. She has an annoying little sister called Sunni, who is thankfully too small to attend Wyvolds yet. Naz is sassy and tough and Rachaya's go-to person on all things dragony.

Hobbies: setting things on fire, slogging people on the arm.

Appearance: Naz is very attractive, with wavy black hair and a winning smile. She would be unrecognisable without her usual black eye thanks to her clumsiness.

Key qualities: Naz is confident and not afraid to speak her mind. She is also a loyal friend and will stand up for what is right.

Elemental type: Fire dragon

Image Source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/d/d5/Zoe_Salda%C3%B1a_2009.jpg/170px-Zoe_Salda%C3%B1a_2009.jpg

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Book Review: The Name of the Wind, by Patrick Rothfuss

- Rothfuss' writing has an almost musical quality to it. Some sentences are so beautiful you can meditate on them for days.

- The way the story is told deviates from the norm when it comes to fantasy fiction. This is a recount of events past, as told by a man who has become something of a legend. Here he is setting the record straight, for the first time telling his story from start to finish. In a stroke of pure genius, there is a scene at the end where local villagers are recounting stories they have heard of Kvothe, so similar and yet so wrong to the actual events. It was the perfect way to cap off the story.

- Rothfuss has managed to be deliciously ambiguous with so many things, and I keep turning turns of phrase over and over in my mind to figure out what he means. This story truly is a puzzle that I am struggling to solve. For this I am grateful for that rarely happens for me in books anymore.

- There is the most stunning character, a waif-like girl called Auri, in this book that is a quiet treasure. I cannot wait to read The Slow Regard of Silent Things to know more.

- My goal in reading this book was to learn a lot about story telling. I have done that, and feel I have learned from a master craftsman. For that I owe my thanks to Patrick Rothfuss.

- The first half of the book had me hooked. The second half dragged so much I broke my "read a chapter a day" rule and read the last hundred pages or so in one sitting just so I was done. The scenes I found incredibly boring were the scenes with the love interest, Denna. She herself didn't annoy me, but entire chapters were dedicated to Kvothe mooning over her, searching for her, his love unrequited. It stagnated the story and, where previously I had struggled to put the book down, here I struggled to pick it up.

- This is a long read, and yet the story really is only beginning. It's quite a commitment to undertake. Personally, that's what I liked about the story, but I can see how that might be a deal breaker for some, especially since the series is incomplete.

Considering my pros far outweighed my cons, I can unhesitatingly recommend The Name of the Wind as a must-read book of a lifetime.

Notable Quotes:

"It was deadly as a sharp stone beneath swift water."

"'So you went looking for a myth and found a man,' he said without inflection, without looking up."

"'It's safe to say I'll need more time than that. And you'll get none of it tonight. A real story takes time to prepare.'"

"'He's eighty years old, and done two hundred years' worth of living. Five hundred , if you count the lies.'"

"If not for him I would never have become the man I am today. Please do not hold it against him. He meant well."

"He raised an eyebrow. I had kept him busy of the last several months, and he hadn't had the leisure to accidentally burn them off."

"The day we fret about the future is the day we leave our childhood behind."

"It would be wrong to say that I was disappointed with sympathy. But honestly, I *was* disappointed."

"He then proceeded to yell at Alpha and Beta, a sign that he was in a genuine good mood. They took it as calmly as ever, in spite of the fact that he accused them of things I'm sure no donkey has ever willingly done, especially not Beta, who possessed impeccable moral character."

"Ben's training has given me a memory so clean and sharp I have to be careful not to cut myself sometimes."

"You have to be a bit of a liar to tell a story the right way. Too much truth confuses the facts. Too much honesty makes you sound insincere."

"Besides, anger can keep you warm at night, and wounded pride can spur a man to wondrous things."

"There are three things all wise men fear: the sea in storm, a night with no moon, and the anger of a gentle man."

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Introducing: Rachaya Butcher Perfero

Rachaya is the main character of The Rachaya Series.

Her name is pronounced Ra-shay-ah.

Close friends and family call her Chia (Shi-ya).

Rachaya grew up in a small village in the human world of Escoria. She is the daughter of a talented human butcher, Krishn, and the fiery fire dragon, Adara. At the beginning of Fyrebyrne Island the time is ripe for Rachaya to embrace her dragon heritage and learn about all things dragony.

Hobbies: sword fighting, feeding her fat cat, Tibbles scraps from the table, oka riding.

Appearance: Rachaya is on the small side, with red hair and brown eyes. She is strong for her small stature, the product of working in her father's butcher shop every day.

Key qualities: Rachaya is loyal, loving and determined. She certainly has a backbone, which is going to stand her in good stead now she is around dragons.

Elemental type: Fire dragon

Image source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/ab/Isla_Fisher_2013.jpg/220px-Isla_Fisher_2013.jpg

Monday, June 26, 2017

Book 2 Has Been Re-Written

I have been telling everyone for some time now that Book 2 of the Rachaya Series has been written. This has never been a lie, and in fact it has already gone through a rigorous round of beta testing. Unfortunately, though, I was never entirely happy with the book and I wasn't going to send it out into the world in the state that it was in. Once Fyrebyrne Island had been published I was able to find the time I needed to reassess Book 2 and properly give it the love and attention that it deserves.

I am pleased to be able to announce that Book 2 is not absolutely complete. I have spent just over a month wrestling with all of the difficult scenes that were so poorly written the first time around. In a couple of weeks I will give it one last editorial sweep before sending it back off to my wonderful beta readers. After that it is off to the editor to be primped and preened. I am still well on track for an end of year/ start of new year release (this will depend on the availability of my editor, which is up in the air at the moment and out of my control). 

Thank you to those of you who have read and enjoyed Book 1 - Fyrebyrne Island so far. I don't have the words to express how wonderful it is to see my book out in the world and in so many hands.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Supanova Wrap-Up

I had an absolutely amazing time at Supanova Melbourne with my book, Fyrebyrne Island. I met so many readers and fellow writers. I was so much more exhausted afterwards than I had expected, but it was worth it.

Look at my booth! 

I am so thrilled that I sold all of the copies of Fyrebyrne Island that I had ordered for Supanova, as well as the copies I had ordered for family and friends. I want to say a huge thank you to Steve and James, my helpers over the weekend. You guys rock!

My favourite thing about Supanova is all of the amazing cosplay that people create. I am speechless about the level of talent and creativity I saw in all of the costumes that passed by my booth. I didn't have my phone on me, and just now I've realised how many photos I missed out on getting. Here is a small snapshot of the few my helpers were able to get (holding copies of my book, of course!).

Thank you to everyone who stopped by for a chat, and for filling in the "What Type of Dragon Are You?" questionnaire. The winners for my small competition have been drawn, and will be announced shortly, once I have contacted them all. These cute guys will be heading to homes soon. I will also be creating (in the very near future) an online version of the quiz for anyone who missed out on finding out their dragon type.

Although I didn't have as much time as I would have liked to check out all the other authors' booths, I did sneak off Sunday morning before the doors opened to the public and purchased these little beauties. I cannot wait until I can sit down and have a good binge read of them all.

Book haul:
The Khalada Stone series, by Russell Meek
Surrender, by G.R. Thomas
Wildfire, by C.L. Aire

Lastly, I want to say a very special thank you to fellow authors G.R.Thomas and Alex James for making me feel so welcome at my first ever convention as a writer. Your advice and kind words along the way meant so much to me.

 Here is G.R.Thomas on the left, and the lovely Renee Spryou in the middle.