6
Apr

The Eye of the Lion Saga

   

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The deeds of the mighty and the bold shape not only their own world, but the future as well, sometimes for generations.

A thousand years in the past, blood flowed not in mere rivers, but in tsunamis. Men laid hands on that which they should never have possessed, the power of a god, and promptly turned it to dark ends: war, terrible and destructive in the way only divine might could achieve.

The world teetered on the brink, the end nigh. Only the courage of great heroes held back doom, men of strength and vision capable of setting aside their enmity before they killed the whole of the humanity.

But one god was not sated, and swore revenge far in the future, when the heroes would be naught but dust, unable to stop him. “The world will become as ash,” he promised.

 

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The heroes buried their dead and began to rebuild, the terrible knowledge in their minds that their children would face the Dead God again. They left records of their struggle, and warned of the danger, but men forget easily when life is good and peace is easy.

Today, few of their descendants even know of the Dead God’s prophesy. Of those, fewer still agree on the source. They only remember ancient enemies. They have forgotten that by the end, they were allies.

Elgar, the Dead God, may well have his due.

Still not there

As I am sure is obvious, I did not make my end of summer deadline, but I did accomplish a great deal, nevertheless. I'd say I am about 75% to a beta, and if I work really hard, I can finish that by end of October. It will take me another month to edit, get feedback, make fixes, edit, and get ready to publish in time for Christmas. I am looking to build a launch team to help with this and offer commentary, so by all means, if you're interested, contact me.

 


New Cover Sketches

As part of the release of book 3, I have had to face something I did not much like: I have been told that my previous covers were not 'genre appropriate', and would hurt sales. I like them, but sadly, I have come to accept that the people who know this business are probably right.

Fortunately, as a programmer, I know a lot of artists. Thanks to Darren Bartlett of Liquid Development for introducing me to Egil Thompson, who has just sent me roughs of his proposed new covers.

I will miss the old covers, but I am really stoked to see someone with great skill bringing these characters to life. The symbols for the gods, the Xanthian and Nihlosian styles, Nihlos and Torium in the backgrounds, it's pretty amazing.

 


"The War God's Will" schedule

Yup, still going, and still about 50%, maybe a little more. It's tough to know precisely, but it's going, and I am pretty proud of some of the stuff I have so far. I should have it mostly done in early June, and I'll put up a pre-order while I finalize proofreading. Maybe I can release part of a chapter next month, something that will be cool to see but not spoil things.

 


Not going to make it

(sigh) I am not going to make my 1st Quarter deadline for "War God's Will".  New baby, day job, and some personal matters. I am now gunning for a summer release. I think that gives me enough time to finish. What I can promise is that I am definitely working on it, and it's coming along well.

 


Roadmap

Faith from Goodreads asked me about my intentions regarding the number of books in the series, and I realized I haven't actually laid this out anywhere, so I'll do that.

Given that this is a story that spans a thousand years or more, I have the notion that for any particular time period, there still needs to be decent closure. I know well the nuisance of waiting for something to resolve over decades, or of dealing with a story that simply has no end. I think one can tell a long, epic, interconnected tale and still have good resting points, and to that end I intend to write the series in "arcs of three".

What I mean by that is that each arc will cover the events of a specific time period, and probably be three books of moderate size, say 100k-150k words or thereabouts. That's how this first arc is planned and being delivered, and I think that's the right length to be able to develop a quality product and release on a relatively timely schedule. The characters of one arc may or may not be prominent in another, but their story within their arc will resolve as best as possible within the larger conflict. The larger conflict will remain, as this is a saga spanning many generations. There will certainly still be questions readers will have, but those questions won't be cliffhanger cheese that by the time you hear the resolution, you don't actually care anymore. They will be more broad, like "What will happen to Nihlos in the future" versus "I wonder if Ahmed will somehow avoid being melted in the lava he was falling toward when the last arc ended."

The next arc will be set roughly 20 years after the resolution of WGW, and I certainly intend to do a full arc for the Great War in the past, so that is at least 9 books. The future story line might expand into two arcs, depending on how I decide to go with things, and could bring it to 12, but that remains to be seen. No current plan for anything beyond that, though there is plenty of room for stories in the millennium between those two times, so plenty of space for more if I change my mind.

Let's call it the Agile method of book series development: the project will grow over time, but I intend to try to make regular deliverables that will function well on their own.