Monthly Archives: November 2013

My Interview with The Florence Reminder & Blade Tribune

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Click here to read the interview. Then hit up the comments section and let me know if I put my foot in my mouth.

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Filed under Education, Fantasy, My Writing, Publishing, Rants, Reading, Science Fiction, Writing

Mascot Time! (The Wolf of Descarta Art Contest)

Right, I know. I already have Balmus all over this site, and thanks to Caelicorn, he looks absolutely amazing!

Given my comic book/anime/video game influences, most of the characters in The Wolf of Descarta are designed to be pretty slick looking–all except for one.

The dreaded Coquil.

There’s no sense in keeping the Coquil a secret any longer. My novel’s excerpt on Amazon.com nearly concludes the chapter in which Balmus and his notorious guild of player killers, The Order of the Blood Moon, knuckle down with this bizarre creature in Bladescape (who just happens to be guarding a legendary weapon). If you’ve read 7 Fantasy Cliches That Need to Disappear (For the Good of All), you already know that I’m easily irritated by the cutesy, overpowered helpers that infest the Fantasy genre.

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Phoooooo!!!

So I decided to throw in a cutesy, overpowered monster that hulks out and nearly murders all my heroes just four short chapters into the novel.

My inspiration for the Coquil came from an MMORPG called Dark Age of Camelot (and probably my not-so-secret desire to take a battle ax to an Ewok).

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Now this game was old school. You didn’t start off with a nifty armor set and bearing a majestic sword and a shield–more like sporting a loin cloth and armed with a rock and a stick.

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To be honest, you didn’t feel very hard core at the beginning of DAoC. Most of the time you’d be grinding and get waylaid by things like bunnies in the woods. Winning at PVP was easier than walking through the friggin’ forest or through a farmstead! I distinctly remember finally getting my chainmail and an imposing greatsword, strapping on a crimson cape signifying my guild, and feeling so very accomplished–maybe about 40 seconds before I was ruthlessly mauled to death by a homicidal badger just chillin’ on the hillside.

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Mushroom, mushroom!

You heard right. A stupid badger.

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Mushroom MUSH-room!

And yes, someone already did this:

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Argh! We’ve got a Snake!

While I’m at it, does anybody remember those stupid, overpowered rabbits in Final Fantasy VII with carrots for swords? Urrgh! Screw them too!

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WTF?! Cloud’s dead?!

So the Coquil–in all its a pink, fluffy evilness–is product of pure rage at the comedic irony of being beaten down by seemingly helpless woodland creatures that should have been laying chocolate eggs for Easter and clucking like a chicken or some damned thing.

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What? You steppin’ to me, hero? You’d best beware–I cluck, and it don’t make a damn bit of sense! Neither does the beat down imma give you!

Now, in my infinite wisdom, I think the Coquil should be the mascot for the blog. The trouble is that I can’t draw to save my life. This is where you come in.

For the next two weeks (ending December 6), I will be accepting fanart submissions of the Coquil at blackknightofbladescape at gmail dot com. The winner of the contest will receive free, autographed copies of both The Wolf of Descarta and RealLies (hopefully in time for the holidays) and a permanent link on this blog to his or her artist page.

No purchase is necessary to participate. Just head over to Amazon and read the free excerpt. Once you’ve got a good idea of what this ruthless, quadrupedal abomination looks like, sharpen your pencils–or fire up your software–and get cracking. The top three entries will be posted on Monday, December 9 and receive what accolades I can bestow upon you in the form of written praise. 🙂

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Filed under Fantasy, My Writing, Rants, Science Fiction, Writing

So I’ve Been Busy… (And The Book Is Out Early!)

Yesterday, I had an interview with Daniel Dullum at the Florence Reminder and Blade Tribune regarding The Dream Box series and the balance I’ve struck between writing Speculative Fiction and teaching high school English. The feature is scheduled to run in the Thanksgiving weekend newspaper. I couldn’t be more pleased!

This afternoon, The Wolf of Descarta, the first novel in the trilogy, received its first review, which came from Fabulous and Fun. Mike (who got his hands on my book early) had this to say:

“This was a remarkably descriptive dystopian sci-fi adventure that you will need a map, some notes, and possibly a chart or two to keep up with! Multiple layers, upon layers, upon, layers of plot twists intertwine through a large cast of characters and several planes of existence to weave together a story that will leave you wanting to know what will happen next.

The book manages to toss around some hefty concepts such as sentience, free will, artificial intelligence, caste systems, and such without getting heavy handed. I thought it also does a good job of pacing itself so the reader isn’t too overwhelmed with the depth of content involved. That being said, I’m sure I missed stuff, so I’ll gladly re-read this when the next book in the dream box series is unleashed!”
5 Stars (5 / 5)

Tonight, I realized that–for whatever reason–Amazon is already selling the Kindle edition of the book despite its official release date being tomorrow. You can get it right here. Charge your batteries and let me know what you think!

If you’re holding out for the print edition of The Wolf of Descarta, it’s scheduled for release on November 29. I’m sure it’ll be easier to sign than your e-reader, and as you’ve seen, the cover alone is worth the ruthless murder of a few unsuspecting trees…  

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