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Posts Tagged ‘Prisoners of the Wailing Tower’

A snippet from Prisoners of the Wailing Tower.

One fun snippet was not enough, so here’s another little taste from Prisoners of the Wailing Tower.

What do you think?


Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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A snippet from Prisoners of the Wailing Tower

Today I’m just sharing a snippet from my forthcoming novella, Prisoners of the Wailing Tower. It’s the fifth in my Minstrels of Skaythe series.

Hope you like it!


Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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As previously mentioned, I’ve been working on the cover copy for Prisoners of the Wailing Tower. I thought I would share what I’ve come up with.

Alemin only wanted to help an innocent. Instead, he was caught by the dreaded hunter-guards. Now he finds himself flung into the Larder, where the very walls are steeped in nightmares and his fellow inmates are dangerous killer. Worse, the warden has far too many questions about Alemin’s friends, the Minstrels, and their subversive lifestyle.

On the outside, the renegade mage Lorrah receives a vision of her friend’s capture. She’s desperate to save Alemin, but the Larder is a prison for the most vicious criminal mages in all of Skaythe. They say if you aren’t mad when you get there, you soon will be.

Luckily, Lorrah is not alone. She has help from the fierce women warriors of Badger Squad. Yet even their combined forces might not be enough to get Alemin free from Dar-Gothull’s Larder!

Well, what do you think? I’d love to hear about any strengths or weaknesses you spot.


Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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Now that I’ve finished my polishing draft on Prisoners of the Wailing Tower, it’s time for someone other than me to take a look at the manuscript. I have one friend that I’m hoping will do a proofing run. While I wait for that, I get to start on the fun parts of self-publishing.

For a couple of weeks, I’ve been peeking in at Shutterstock for potential covers. I plan to stay with the same artist I’ve already used for the series. Having a consistent look to the covers is important. After saving everything of his that I thought might work, I’ve been slowly deleting pieces. On Sunday I had it down to four, and last night I made the final pick. The piece was large enough for a full cover spread, but I know I can crop it to fit an e-book cover. Later, if I decide to do a print book of the second set of novellas, I’ll have an image ready to go.

The next step will be to create the title itself. With that, I’ll be able to start assembling the cover on Canva. I’ll also do a couple of different sized ads that I can put on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. This is one of the fun and creative parts for me, and I’m looking forward to it. The text won’t be ready for several weeks more, but that’s all right. Starting advance promotions ahead of time is all to the better.

Another exciting thing is that Teri Polen has started her book feature, Bad Moon Rising. My day is October 10th, and I’ll be featuring Dancer in the Grove of Ghosts, second in my Minstrels of Skaythe series.

The slightly sad thing is that Fall Folk Fest, where I’ve been reading my stories for the past few years, has announced the cancellation of their live performances and craft fair. Like SpoCon, this is disappointing but not surprising. I do have the option of putting together a video of myself reading for their virtual concert, but I’m not sure if I really have time or the skills for it.

Anyway, that’s what I’ll be up to for the rest of the week.


Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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This will be a short post, because there just isn’t much going on around here. Besides, after the last couple of posts, I figure you all deserve a break.

I’m working on those final revisions for Prisoners of the Wailing Tower. I hadn’t realized I started sentences with conjunctions (and, but, or) as much as I do. Also, it’s funny, but every story seems to have one certain word that keeps cropping up. This time it’s “rickety.” It’s a fun word, to be sure, but not everything in Skaythe can be rickety. I have to find interesting new phrases for those conjunctions and all my rickety objects.

In other words, writing as usual!


Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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Yesterday was my last day of school before break. The students got on their buses at 2:20 pm and the principal came down the hall at 2:25 telling us we didn’t need to stay. All the teachers burst out of the building celebrating. In a dignified and respectful way, of course.

So I’ve turned off my morning alarms. I look forward to not taking my temperature every morning, and not having a mask on for 6 hours straight during the day.

I also look forward to completing the third draft revision on Prisoners of the Wailing Tower. I’m literally five pages from the end. I also have one background character that I think I gave two different names, so that needs to be straightened out. Details, details. Then, I have a short story to work on for the time capsule anthology I had mentioned a couple of weeks ago. The story isn’t due until May, but I’d like to take care of it so I can start working on my next Minstrels of Skaythe novella.

I hope you all get a break, too, in whatever form it comes to you.


Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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The third draft revision for Prisoners of the Wailing Tower, that is. I’ve done my first read-through, where I highlight everything that I might want to fix. Now I’m on about page 20 of 120, going through word by word.

I’ve discovered a few words that I definitely used too much. Some characters don’t walk, they either strut or swagger. Others can’t just look at you, they scowl or glare. When they talk, they all sneer. So obviously I’m working to refine my vocabulary and eliminate those redundancies.

The only plot related problem to work out is the horse issue. (Will the horses run away in the middle of a battle.) I thought I had it solved, with the horse being well trained enough not to trample my protagonist. Then I remembered that the horses were also blinded in the battle. So I still have some thinking to do there.

Over all, I’m pleased with it. With school being fairly intense, I’m only getting through about 10 pages a day of careful work. I still should finish before Christmas, though. I’ll have a completed novella to toast at New Year’s. My expected publication date is in May of 2021.


Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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First, I appreciate all of you who responded to my question about what makes a good ending. Blogging can be a bit like talking to oneself, so thanks!

I am still, in fact, working on the ending for Prisoners of the Wailing Tower. Not the “grand finale” with its running battles, but the aftermath. Those last reflections that show how the characters have changed during the course of the story. To me, these quieter moments of thought are almost as important as the outcome of the plot. And, since this is fourth in a series, there’s also a bit of looking ahead to the trials that remain.

It isn’t perfect yet. However, it is good enough to print out and give to my first readers. We writers get scolded a lot that we mustn’t let anyone see our work until it’s ginger-peachy-perfect. I think that’s a mistake. Writers can’t guard our stories like they’re the Hope Diamond. We have to let them out into the world. Anyway, I can continue tweaking those last five pages without affecting the first readers.

So — Yahoo, the second draft is finished!


Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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As in, temperatures over 100 degrees for three days in a row. Anything I needed to do outside, I’ve done it as early as possible. That allows me to hunker down inside with the family, and play video games…

Uh, write! I meant write.

Seriously, I have been pushing ahead on revisions of Prisoners of the Wailing Tower. I’m just about at the 3/4 mark. Quite often I find myself thinking, “Man, I really went easy on these characters.” Then I remember how I just slammed words down to finish the first draft. I always knew the second draft would require more concentration on the ending.

Anyhow, it looks like I can finish this draft before I report back to school on September 2nd. Woot! However, I still need at least one more draft. Since school is also going to require extra concentration, my hope to publish in November is coming more and more into doubt.

Don’t worry, I have a backup project! And I’ll tell you about that if it becomes necessary.

The other fun thing is that I’ve had a “heat wave” on the next Minstrels of Skaythe novella. (Which will be #5, if you’re keeping track.) Many details remain to be discovered, but at least I know what the core of the story will be. It might not exactly be the concluding volume I had assumed. Either there will be a sixth novella, or… I don’t know.

This is 2020! Why am I even trying to plan ahead?


Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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Something strikes me as I continue working on revisions of my latest novella. The next one will be the the last of the Minstrels of Skaythe series.

Up to this time, the individual novellas have stood more or less on their own. My minstrels have had their separate adventures, trying to fly under the radar of Dar-Gothull’s oppressive regime. That will be much more difficult after the end of Prisoners of the Wailing Tower. So in addition to fixing this draft, I’m starting to gather my thoughts about the next one.

There are already quite a few characters in the four novellas. I need to consider which ones will appear in the finale. Likewise, the evil mages who have grudges against the various minstrels. What will their roles be? Also, there is one specific image, predicted near the end of The Tower in the Mist, that I need to make real.

Most of all, I need to decide the outcome for the total series. Can a rag-tag band really take down an evil empire? If they do, what will replace it? I believe it’s important to be honest with readers. A flimsy, pat ending might be comfortable, but it would also feel hollow. And I’ll tell you now, I’m not setting out to write a flimsy, hollow story with Minstrels of Skaythe.

Those of you who have read these novellas know that I’m not afraid of gray endings. That’s intentional, really. I want to leave space for the readers to think their own thoughts about what will happen in the new status quo.

So that’s what I’m pondering at the moment.


Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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