On the Prowl Again!

It’s been quite a while since I’ve made a blog, so I figured I should get back into the swing of things and let you all know what’s happening.

Basically, since you’ve been gone I’ve gone to the liberty of editing the book even more-so than it was before! It is now at 399 pages (a travesty for a person with slight OCD, but I have no important things to add and so I will try not worry about it). There’s a lot more character interaction in this version, grittier themes and even more epic fight scenes. Less gore, more grit is how my mind works. Although the old version simply touched on the themes of the destiny, this one also adds the themes of humanity, war, family, morality, and whether or not a person is really inherently good.

Also, since I last posted, the very first hint at character looks is shown in the art for Chapter 4.
Ch4painted
I personally love Annika’s work. She’s a champ. I can’t wait to see her continued work, as she plans to do some work for each chapter. Amazing!

Also, because I could, I added some more depth to the hinted love triangle that was already there. I’ve just plain had fun with it, because why shouldn’t I? My favorite part as to now has been the two characters in the book, Luc and Roach. Roach is pronounced Roak, but I didn’t like the “k” look so I switched it to something that I thought looked better. Then I realized what that spelled, and for comedy kept it. As both characters have deep accents, I will admit what they are based on: Scottish. I happen to have a deep love for Scotland, as everyone from my mother’s side is at least part scottish. I’m a fourth-generation American, and one of my oldest family apparently still remembers the boat ride. This boggles my mind, and so in order to make my extended family proud, I put some people in there who sound Scottish. Also, it’s just fun to write for.

However, I am a busy man and just am not in the mood to do a heavily long and detailed speech regarding everything that’s happened, so I will let the work speak for itself. Please observe a certain scene, which I will remove spoilers for and add things to help with context. Also realize that I cannot display some names because I switch constantly between evil and good characters. I don’t want you all to know who goes bad and who doesn’t just yet.

“Whit’s aw thes?” He asked with a drunken slur. He then saw ******* and his eyes widened. “One ‘e you!” he bellowed, grabbing the sword that was resting on his hip and rushing toward *******.
He put his hand out and a blast of air flew towards him. To his surprise, Roach dodged to the left and continued rushing at him. *******’s eyes widened. He continued shooting blasts of air at him as Roach swaggered out of the way drunkenly, hiccupping between dodges occasionally. ******* let out one giant wide-ranged blast [of wind magic], hurling Roach into the house and also knocking the house over.
As the dust cleared, he saw Roach’s brother sat in the rubble next to a table. He took a cup off the table and took a sip. The table and chair he was sitting on crumbled. He looked at ******* angrily as he stood up and took another sip.
“Whit is thes, ye comin’ ower an’ knockin’ mah hoose doon loch ‘at? Bludy rude, e’en fur a monster.” He picked up a sword from the rubble and threw the cup over his shoulder. “Ye need some ‘elp Roach?”
Roach hiccupped. “Ah dornt need yer help, Luc! i’ve got thes! It’s jist one ‘o ‘em!”
Roach’s brother joined Roach and also ran toward *******, but taking a route with the clear intention of coming behind him.

And so, now that that’s all over, I will admit that I am on the prowl for an editor. I don’t know who it will be yet, but as a college kid, it’s hard to find time to do it myself. But I’m happy to have someone else giving it a try, someone a little more professional and who has a fresh look on it.

Adios, my dark friends, keep on following and viewing!

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Building Characters

So as it turns out, doing college and writing a book is hard. I have a lot of college classes, and so I hardly find time to write, and when I do I have writer’s block. This is mainly due to the fact that I’m working on an extra chapter that has a lot of explaining of things. It’s like the Doctor Who episode that we never got, because he just keeps saying “I’ll explain later.” I want explaining now! So I decided I would be different.

I’m not going to really talk about that chapter, as much as I would like to. It would mean that I would be spoiling quite a lot, as I seem to do all the time. I don’t try to, but I end up saying random things about characters because I feel they need explanation. So I’ve decided to focus this blog on one of my favorite characters I’m writing for, which is Roach.

“What a horrendous name, Roach!” you might think. It’s actually based off one of my favorite characters from The Cosby Show, Cockroach – the name at least. The personality is totally different, mainly because he’s a soldier who’s been battling for a long, long time. I decided long before I would do the book that I would make my characters as realistic as possible. I decided recently when I started improving on Roach’s character that he would be one of these, as he is an especially tormented character, although it’s only mentioned in whispers, except in one possible scene I’m writing, where it goes very deep into his history. The reason he is as tormented as he is is due to his PTSD. Yes, a fantasy character has PTSD. Why has nobody questioned Legolas or Aragorn not having something of the same? Seriously, they’re killing people left and right. So what if they’re mostly orcs, I’m sure they’ve killed others in battle who weren’t. Yet no one seems to have any doubts, any distress, over this. I am just about done with this concept, and I wanted to address it in the series. He isn’t the only character with PTSD, but no, I will not spoil who the other one is. However, he is the one with the most clear problems, such as drinking and cursing and fear of any and all dragons, even though he sees them semi-regularly. The cursing is mainly cut off before anything can be said, as even though this has horrendously gory material at times, I do also want an audience with Christians who might be all right with extreme violence but not all right with some occasional language. I’m still not sure why some think this way, but so it goes.

And what’s not to love with Roach? He’s tormented, but he’s also got a heavy Scottish-style accent, which makes everything he says somehow less disturbing. Don’t ask me why, it just does. It might be due to the fact that I’m American. So sue me for finding every and all British accent amusing. Everybody else probably wants to sue me anyway, this is America after all!

In closing, one of the most important things of building characters is to not try to censor anything they say. If you wish to have a child-friendly character, make one beforehand, do not make a character who would not be normally child-friendly and try to make him one. Then you will have a terrible relationship with your own characters, and no one will believe them, because of course, they aren’t real. Keep this in mind. I’ve actually multiple times based characters of friends I know, including personal struggles because, let’s face it, everyone’s human, even if they’re not, in fantasy. All humans, all have family, or lack of family. They all have weaknesses along with their strengths. Otherwise, they’re just characters, and they just aren’t real, and your readers will not like them. They will probably not like your book either, because humans are relational creatures. They like to feel close to someone, and gosh danggit you oughtta give ’em that chance to do so with ink on paper, too! That’s why books are awesome, they make everyone insane for the time that they’re reading your book. They fall in love with people that don’t exist, never have existed or will exist, and then their hearts break when they have a loss or even die, as though they were mourning a loved one. As do we all. Excellent stuff, we are made of.

A Storm is Brewing

Now that the nationwide ad has officially gone out for the book, I feel like I can talk about Dark Soldier and all its gothic steampunk goodness a bit more. Dark Soldier is a novel I have been working on for two years, and I’m very proud of it. Although, I can’t say it is all due to me. Malkeon, Zenti, Trizkol, Ashlin, Zelena, Vaeryl; all the characters have put their fare share into the book just as I have. So here we go, just the basics. No spoilers!!

Who?

Many characters, of course, but it all starts out with a boy named Malkeon Redwing, who will soon become a man.

What?

The basics of Dark Soldier, how to start? I’m not one for short summaries, but if I WERE to write a short summary, it would be as follows: A young Asynthandian boy with a dark secret is quickly flung into a chaotic set of world-changing events when he is charged unfairly and left to die. No spoilers, nothing. Many apologies. Expect to be seeing some regular fantasy creatures, some familiar creatures with an unfamiliar twist, and some not-so-regular creatures. In fact, expect some creatures that have not been mentioned or conceived before.

When?

The series takes place in what the series refers to as the Age of Night, which corresponds best to our Medieval Age here on earth. However, due to the new amounts of technology rising up everywhere, who can really describe the age that is to come?

Where?

Although the story begins in Asynthandt (apologies for my own spelling if it’s wrong, I don’t care if I invented the word it’s hard to spell), it travels across the landscape, hundreds of miles, some by dragon, some by horseback, some by foot, some by the steeds of Jevruun and some by the smoke of a shadow. Prepare for some world-hopping excitement.

Why?

Because I can. I loved telling stories since I was young. I used to do it through drawing on the walls and explaining my story to my mother, but she did not appreciate that. I have taken to doing it through a medium that is far more appreciated than drawings on walls, one that everyone can enjoy and I do.

I would say that honestly the characters keep me going far more than I keep myself. I, personally, am lazy, but my characters are not. Their stories are hard, unforgiving, and filled with wonder; they deserve to be told without a second thought to it, if anyone deserves anything.

So, with this knowledge at your fingertips, check out the Facebook page for Dark Soldier, coming 2016. Can’t wait to see you there!

 

College Weekends

Story Time! You can get the video version of this here.

So it turns out that waking up on the weekends is hard. I’ll admit it, I think most people will. I mean, what’s the point even, it’s an entire weekend of nothing if you let yourself do so! Who would want to wake up at that point, especially when you get to hang out with your best friend? My best friend on earth is probably my bed. I love you, bed! *kisses*

This morning was like all those before a regular weekend – staying up way too late because you know you have nothing to do that next morning, even if you do, but you don’t care because it’s the weekend and you are your own boss!!! So I found myself waking up at the unusually early time of 10:57, and after a few seconds got up in a panic. The reason I was so panicky was because I had church in 3 minutes, and it was a 15 walk. Thank God for buses. Still, I wanted to make it on time, so I quickly spiked my hair (because this is apparently my main concern in the morning other than clothes) and got on fancy clothes and started running out to the bus stop. I didn’t question why the rest of my dormies were staying in bed, I just assumed they were going to skip church, as we’d stayed up till 2 in the morning the previous night playing “Mafia”.

As I got on the bus, I looked around and noticed I was the only one in fancy clothes. I’m not normally one to judge. I used to be the guy who dressed in t-shirts and ripped jeans on my way to church. Come as you are, they say. But the elderly baptist preacher came out of me, and was like:

People. Going to church. In track uniforms. On a Sunday? HEATHENS.

And as we were getting out at the edge of the bus stop, I’m walking away in a panic. You may question that little line there. Nobody else was running, really. They were just kind of at this steady jog that looks like its going a lot faster than it is. It’s really just walking really hard. So I did their hard walking along with them, you know, make them feel good about themselves. And I notice they’re all going along with me to church. Very nice, how devoted that you would go right after running for quite some time probably! Physical and spiritual exercise! What great men and women of God! Then I noticed them going into the track room, before the service.

They’re already late, but they’re going to the track room?! The baptist preacher returned, saying:

People. Going to the track room right next to the church. When they should be going to the church. DOUBLY HEATHEN.

As I’m walking up to the doors, determining the heathenness of the people behind me, judging them silently, I looked to the doors to see no greeters at all! “Wow, I must be late!” I thought. “No one’s here!”

I opened the door.

There was no one there.

It was Saturday, not Sunday.

So as I walked back to the bus stop, head hung in shame *cue sad music and rain* I looked around and saw people in track uniforms at the bus stop, probably silently judging me, just as I had done, thinking:

Wearing fancy clothes. On a Saturday. As if it were a Sunday. Not even knowing what day church is. HEATHEN.

The moral of the story? Don’t judge too quickly. You just might be totally wrong.

 

If you’re all wondering, why isn’t he posting anything about Dark Soldier recently? Well, basically I’ve set a plan in mind to wait until I have a debit card to do any more advertising, which should be soon as it’s literally in my mailbox. Expect to be seeing a worldwide Dark Soldier phenomenon coming soon!!

Full Steampunk Ahead

For those who were unaware, I’m a steampunkaholic. Yes, that’s correct, I’m coming out of the steam-filled, clockwork-powered sky pirate’s closet of aviator goggles. I’ve always been a fan of antiques and scifi, meaning I like futuristic things like mecha robots and laser cannons along with antique things such as top hats, steam trains, civil war cannons and 19th century upper-class dress. Mixing future and past is therefore one of my favorite things in the world. This is probably why I make so many steampunk-style things in the series I’m writing, The Soldier Chronicles, coming 2016. Expect bronze robots, steam trains, top hats, elves with top hats, elves with Civil War-era pistols, that sort of thing.

But as a introverted college student, I have come to notice something. I personally enjoy sitting alone. It’s not that I don’t like people, although depending on the people I probably won’t. It really all boils down to me not enjoying somebody judging my capability to ingest delectables. I don’t mind it so much with people that I already know. However, those that I don’t know, they’re just not going to catch me doing something, at least probably not, especially when I’m actually hungry and not just eating for social interaction.

Anyway, the point of the matter is that at this college it seems like nobody wants to sit in a group. They must all scatter within groups of two to each table to make absolutely sure that those that want to sit alone or with another friend cannot do so without interrupting their personal space. Not that I’m bitter, mind you, I’m just perplexed at this phenomenon. So there I am, at lunch, drink in hand, trying to find someplace to sit. There is literally no place to sit that there is not someone there already. I could feel the judging glares down my skull asking me “why don’t you have some large variety of friends or ability to socialize that you can’t sit anywhere?” I didn’t actually feel the judgment, but it felt like I felt the judgment, if that means anything. It took me a while of cruising, probably about five minutes, although it felt like forty. Eventually, I did find someone from my own dorm, an awesome dude who rocks his shortness. I swear he is a real-life Tolkien-age dwarf, due to his height and beard. Although, he doesn’t eat very much at all, so he’s not quite at Gimli status.

I have come to realize that I have not posted any artwork of any sort. I will fix that problem immediately. Here is Cyberland from quite a while ago:

cyberland_by_darkgabriel23-d67ufpl

There we are. Problem solved. Now you may all bask in the sheer awesomeness of a weird-as-heck cybertech robot breathing out a Utopian city.

I have come to feel like there is not quite enough in this post, so I am adding one more paragraph full of crazy sorts of things. I am unsure of what those are going to be up until this point, but give it time. Eventually I will realize that I wish to make some sort of comment on the current problem of some sort in our current society that nobody cares about at all. I think that seems to be the Christian Goth community. You were probably not aware that there is such a thing. However, it totally is, and for some time I would have considered myself part of it, and still partially do, although I am not quite so high-flung as to be wearing black on all occasions and parting my neon-dyed hair over one eye. (I am not saying I actually have neon-dyed hair. It is a hypothetical suggestion.) The reason they are referred to as Christian goths is their intense love for all things dark and disturbing. How, one might ask, can one fall in love with things that are sinful and continue to call yourself Christian? I do not think we really love death as much as one imagines, it is merely the things associated with death. For instance, skeletons are considered to be something most Christians would not enjoy, because it is a reminder of our sinful nature and the causes of it. Why so? I find that skulls and skeletons hold our bodies together. They are very much a symbol for if not the living, then the thing that once was. We should appreciate them more. I see the same with things like bats, blood, darkness. All are created by God, and he would not have made them if he did not also find them beautiful.

That is all. Have an odd and wonderful week!

Good Morning, Earth

Well, hello. I’m not exactly sure what you’re supposed to say for your first blog. I’m a writer, not a blogger, danggit! I don’t know how to work these things!

The point of the matter is they tell me that in order to have a good following as an author, you’re supposed to write a blog, because people reading your Twitter and Facebook are just not enough to gain a fan following. Probably true, but it seems a little strange. I mean, nobody reads these things anymore. They just don’t have enough attention span. I’ve probably lost about 100% of my ADD audience by now. Waffles. See, now I’ve brought about a third of them back. The other 66.666forever% are completely gone, though. Sadly, good sirs, there are no waffles. Much sadness is felt, I’m sure, but trust me, there are better things than waffles. This blog post, depending on the person reading it, might be one of them.

It’s not easy being a college author, although it is convenient. Often you have plenty of things to read from the local bookstore, much like The Fault In Our Stars, which I just finished today. Excellent writing by John Greene, by the way. That’s the kind of writers we don’t see too often, who literally make the readers putty in their hands. I could literally switch from near-tears to laughter in a matter of seconds. That’s a good thing, seriously. You can turn your readers into complete maniacs just for the fun of it. I’m determined writers will probably rule the world someday, having such great power over the minds of people.

You’re probably thinking to yourself, is this guy just going to prattle on and on about nothingness? Well, first of all, I’m offended, I didn’t think it was nothingness. You should be ashamed of yourself for not thinking about the feelings of the blogger. Upset, are you? See? Writing. But I will get to important things, as of right now.

Your next thought was, well, if this college kid is some kind of a writer, what does he have to show for it now? Nothing yet. Nothing, you ask? My response is how are you writing in my blog? That’s just strange. So is me writing this at the ungodly hour of 11:42 at night. So it goes. However, around 2016, I will have something to show for it with the arrival of the first book of the Soldier Chronicles, Dark Soldier. I’ve been working on it for about two years now, and have been a bit lazy with the writing of it – not the writing, per se, but rather the actual amount of time I put into it. I wasn’t working hurriedly on it every waking moment of those years. If I had, I’d have been done by now, but it wouldn’t have been quite as good of a story as it’s turning out to be. Thank God for procrastination.

The series is some sort of a weird steampunk/goth/fantasy young adult fiction thing going on. I probably didn’t need that fiction part in there. I don’t think there are nonfiction versions of those sorts of things. If there are, someone let me know, because that will mean I’ll need to add something to my reading list. Anyway, it’s that way because it’s set in an area in fantasy in which there are dragons, pistols, elves and clockwork all at the same time. It’s an exciting time in history when an elf can be blasting holes in people without anyone questioning it. Except that people do question it. The first book has a really rough progression into the steampunk-ness. I think I may have invented a new word back there.

I’m pretty lame, I know, giving away that part of the story. I swear I’ll try to avoid spoilers as much as possible. It’s just that when you see genius on a page you feel you have to tell somebody.

So, I don’t just write prose, as much as I like prose. I also write poetry. I read it too, when I can. The problem is that everyone writes it, never shows it off and then expects someone else to read it. How can one find a good poem these days? So I have to go back to authors like Edgar Allan Poe and such. Brilliant man, right there. I get a lot of inspiration for my style from him at times.

I have no plans for any extra things to say, except that I hope perhaps this has intrigued your interest and made you want to do something about all this knowledge. Go write your own book. Not meant in a snarky way, mind you. I’d like to read it is what I’m saying.

Anyway, it’s rather late and I think it’s best to get at least seven hours of sleep. Good luck to you all, may you have excellent sleeps and never tire of the art of placing ink on paper, whether that be by hand or computer.

Good night.