DISCIPLE continues...

DISCIPLE continues...

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Announcing DISCIPLE, PART V!

Disciple, Part V
on sale
August 29th, 2014

Kate faces winter with a broken heart: betrayed by one lover, the other lost to her.

Kiefan will not give up on the alliance his kingdom desperately needs — even though the Caer queen refuses to speak to him. 

Anders, alone and despairing, faces the Empress’s seductive offers of power and privilege. 

Each of them must carry the ongoing war in their own way, whether cold, alone, or backed into a corner. Each must patch together a broken heart as best they can. Duty will throw them together soon enough and they must be ready.

Disciple is a six-part gritty fantasy romance
Look for the last volume in early 2015!

Stay tuned for the cover reveal!

Catch up with the series...
Download Part I FREE!



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Saturday, June 28, 2014

JUDGEMENT'S TALE I by William L. Hahn

An Interview with Cedrith Fellareon
I’m pleased to present a brief interview with (but not really about) the character of Cedrith in the upcoming Tale of Hope Games of Chance. Cedrith Fellareon is an Elf and a member of the Sages Guild, visiting Conar, the capital of Hope, from his homeland Mendel. A polite and respected guildsman, Cedrith’s life has been turned around by his acquaintance with Solemn Judgement, the main character of the story. Judgement’s Tale Part One, Games of Chance will be available July 4th.


 “Say there, Sage Fellareon! Could I have a word?”

“Chief Archivist, for you always, how may I be of service?”

“Well, Sage Fellareon, it’s about this request on my desk, for a restricted tome. Seems to be from a student of yours?”

“Indeed? Is it recent?”

“Well no, there’s the thing- I, ahm, I did not get to it, had it a couple weeks.”

“You’ve been very busy, no doubt sir, I under-”

“And you yourself, I just realized, checked out the same book two days ago.”

“Indeed yes, I took the liberty, that is, I did not realize he ha-”

“So I thought most likely the matter was resolved.”

“Ah yes, so it has been, thanks for your concern.”

“Ehm.”

“Chief Archivist?”

“What about- well this student of yours, Sage Fellareon? Is it usual, I mean, do you normally take pupils older than yourself?”

“Older!”

“That is, I mean no insult to your age- that is, I’m sure I have no idea how old- oh, dear, I’ve given offence.”

“Not in the least, I assure you, sir. There is-”

“I am so unused to dealing with elves, you see, you are indeed the only visitor from Mendel’s kingdom I’ve ever encountered.”

“Please, do not trouble yourself, sir. There is-”

“It’s simply that this old man- is he indeed a human? Or perhaps another one of your race?”

“Do you speak of Solemn Judgement, sir?”

“The grey-haired one whose name is on this request. Your pupil, am I right Sage?”

“My dear Chief Archivist, I’m afraid you must prepare yourself for a shock. Solemn Judgement, my pupil as you call him, is perhaps fifteen years old.”

“Why nonsense, sir! Do you mean- ah, of course! So this Judgement youth is a nobleman, then? His servant spoke very well for a menial.”

“No- with respect, Chief Archivist, he only appears aged at first glance. And his manner-”

“Please, be serious! A youth? There’s not a hair on his head any color but slate. And such reserve, he spoke like someone from court.”

“He may have been, sir, for all I can tell. Judgement has ever been the very soul of comportment and civility, quite remarkable in someone so young. I can well unders-”

“What house is he from, then? One of the southern baronies? Or perhaps from Shilar?”

“Neither sir. He is in fact an alien among us. And an orphan. Perhaps you recall, that unfortunate incident last month, on the day of my thesis presentation?”

“What do y- by the Hopelord, do you mean- this was the fellow wh-who was… :: whispering :: arrested?”

“The very same, sir, on his first day in the city, though I must sa-”

“Oh that horrid hour! I can hardly breathe.”

“Let us sit, sir, perhaps some tea. Here, right here we are.”

“The very thing, thank you, Sage. I admit, since that day I had banished the dreadful thought- to think, the Law of Conar nearly broken! After four thousand years… and you tell me now, the criminal was this boy?”

“As to that-”

“I had heard tell it was some rough sailor, or a powerful mage!”

“Yes, the staff, and his high boots-”

“But everyone spoke of the villain as a man, sir, I mean an adult, Sage Fellareon.”

“Chief Archivist, if you will kindly recall, Solemn Judgement was found innocent of this, ah, misunderstanding. The Law remains unbroken.”

“Well, of course as it should be. But now I think on this Judgement fellow, I find more reasons to be unsure of him, Sage Fellareon. Do you think it quite politic to keep him here, and moreover looking into forbidden works?”

“Restricted, Chief Archivist, I must insist, not forbidden.”

“Let us not split hairs, Sage Fellareon. Just look at this list of sign-outs! I took the liberty, when I realized what book he was asking for. Despairing culture, reports of miracles from the past three centuries, burial customs- why, there are even tomes in the Ancient tongue here, yet you insist this is just a youth.”

“It does seem strange, I know, but his curiosity is very, eh, very widespread. I know of no subject he is not interested in.”

“But, books in Ancient? For what purpose?”

“Why to read, Chief Archivist. You seem disinclined to believe me? May I ask if you have much fluency, sir- I myself can hardly-”

“As to that, I can read well enough, yes- at my age, and after years of study.”

“Young Judgement reads and speaks with fluency.”

“Ridiculous! Speaks! Why even the preachers must stay within strict bounds with the Ancient tongue of our heroic ancestors.”

“You need not question my account, Chief Archivist. Ask his tutor- the Healers Guildmistress Natashi Ioki.”

“Healer Ioki! A scholar indeed, of the first rank. I suppose, heh, we could trust her word on the matter.”

“Or his.”

“What?”

“It is not possible to lie in the Ancient tongue- but Judgement speaks no falsehood, whatever the language or subject. Neither will he lose his temper, no matter how poorly he is received-”

“What! Say, are you-”

“He never fails to complete any research assigned, shirks no chore however tedious or long, nor will he drink wine or ale, hardly sleeps and never stops working to learn.”

“Only all that! You seem to think very highly of him. I suppose you can be forgiven for interrupting, in light of your approbation. Perhaps you will tell me next that he can fly.”

“No, sir.”

“Praise the Hopelord.”

“But he can swim.”

“Oh now, this is your Elvish humor no doubt. Who taught him to swim, pray tell me that.”

“This is the very point, sir. Who indeed? But the young man claims it is common where he came from. And I witnessed his skill with my own eyes.”

“You leave me without words, Sage Fellareon. What are we to do with this prodigy?”

“Do, sir? We are a Guild of Sages- I had not thought it unusual that I should endeavor to teach him.”

“Well of course, sir, of course! But I mean, after that- once this unusual fellow has learned, what then shall become of him, and what does he intend, answer me that.”

“Such mysteries are far beyond my poor abilities, Chief Archivist.”

“I should think, sir, with all respect to your position as guest here, that some thought might be taken. The subjects this, this alien is studying, I would say require caution.”

“As you please, sir. I’m here for a session with the youth now- you may interrogate him if you wish.”

“Me!”

“Certainly, Chief Archivist- satisfy your concerns, I assure you Solemn Judgement will answer every question put to him.”

“Why as to that- I cannot- that is, I prefer- ach! He is coming, those boots, I hear him from a furlong, his pace like some moving clock, or a horrid Makine.”

“Chief Archivist!”

“And always wearing that broad, flat-brimmed hat, with eyes that stare, and never blink- see, there he is coming now as you said. No, I leave him to your care, Sage Fellareon, absolutely.”

“You are quite certain, Chief Archivist?”

“No doubt, sir, I’m sure you may be trusted completely with his care. It occurs to me that I have, I must, some appointments. I cannot- those eyes! That is, I leave him to you.”

“Thank you sir.”

“You need not thank me- may the Heroes watch over you, I pray! Good day, sir.”

Games of Chance
For twenty centuries the Lands of Hope prospered from their Heroes’ peace, but suffer now from their absence as a curse thickens over the central kingdom known as the Percentalion. An immortal omniscient conspirator schemes to escape the extra-worldly prison restraining his tide of undeath, using a demonic ally in a plot to bring back hell on earth. Solemn Judgement steps onto these Lands both a stranger and an orphan, driven to complete the lore his father died to give him.

In a world beset with increasing chaos, the bravest Children of Hope must take mortal risks. A young woodsman’s spear-cast, a desperate bid to save his comrades; the Healers Guildmistress’ cheery smile, hiding a grim secret and a heavy burden of guilt; the prince of Shilar’s speech in a foreign tongue, a gambit to avoid bloodshed or even war. As a new generation of heroes, scattered across the kingdoms, bets their lives and more, Solemn Judgement- soon to be known as The Man in Grey- must learn to play… Games of Chance: Part One of Judgement’s Tale

Wm. L. Hahn Bio
Will Hahn has been in love with heroic tales since age four, when his father read him the Lays of Ancient Rome and the Tales of King Arthur. He taught Ancient-Medieval History for years, but the line between this world and others has always been thin; the far reaches of fantasy, like the distant past, still bring him face to face with people like us, who have choices to make.

Will didn't always make the right choices when he was young. Any stick or vaguely-sticklike object became a sword in his hands, to the great dismay of his five sisters. Everyone survived, in part by virtue of a rule forbidding him from handling umbrellas, ski poles, curtain rods and more.

Will has written about the Lands of Hope since his college days (which by now are also part of ancient history). With the publication of Judgement’s Tale Part One, Games of Chance, he begins at last to tell the tale of the Land’s most unique hero, The Man in Grey.

CONTACT LINKS
Will Hahn is the chronicler of the Lands of Hope tales.






Will's Blog Thoughts- Including tales of a happy childhood (which continues), hopes for a writer's journey, and analysis of Classics You've Never Read

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Friday, May 30, 2014

THE DRAGON'S MESSAGE by Lori J. Fitzgerald

Welcome to The Dragon's Message by Lori J. Fitzgerald -- when I heard she was using a Celtic-flavored medieval fantasy world, I had a few world-building questions for her...

Your stories are set in a medieval world with a Celtic flavor to it. How did you establish that in the world-building to differentiate it from, say, the French influence seen in the classic King Arthur tales? 
I use a lot of names of Celtic-Welsh origin in my writing. Rhiannon and Gwydion are also both characters you will find in Celtic mythology, although their mythological counterparts don't have anything to do really with my characters! I use the Welsh word for castle, "Caer," and Rhiannon's castle Caer Idris has a Welsh root meaning "fire." I have always loved Lloyd Alexander's Prydain Chronicles, and his character names such as Fflewddur Fflam the bard and Princess Eilonwy and the great and wise warrior Prince Gwydion always appealed to me.  However, in true Arthurian fashion, I do mix the French influence of courtly love into my narrative, and you will find references to "curtesye," or courtly manners, in the relationship between my Sir Gwydion and Lady Rhiannon.

What are some of your favorite sources of information about medieval and/or Celtic life?
My favorite literary primary sources are Malory's Le Morte Darthur, which I feel is the definitive tale of Arthurian medieval romance, and The Mabinogion, which is the collection of Celtic mythology. For historical and archaeological information my number one source is Leslie Alcock's Arthur's Britain. For literary analysis, I recommend starting with The Development of Arthurian Romance by Roger Sherman Loomis, which also includes the influences of The Mabinogion, French writers such as Chretien de Troyes, my favorite Grail story Parzival by the German Wolfram von Eschenbach, the legend of Glastonbury Tor, and Merlin. Loomis also has written various other books on the Grail and individual Arthurian characters.

Is there an aspect of Celtic life that was especially difficult to work into your world? Or especially fun and easy?
Although I knew from the start that my main characters would be named Rhiannon and Gwydion, the other names were a bit more difficult. I looked at a lot of Welsh/Celtic name lists and roots to get Idris and Aelwyd, which both have "fire" connotations. Aelwyd, Rhiannon's great-great grandmother's name, actually has a root meaning "hearth," which can have several symbolic connotations in my story. And I don't want to give away too many secrets, but there is another character's name whose translation gives his secret away!

Excerpt from The Dragon's Message
When Rhiannon was small and had just learned to read, her mother brought her into the hall one day when her father was on campaign, and led her to the large table upon which a great map of their lands lay.  She instructed Rhiannon to read the words of the landmarks: castle, road, mountain, forest, village. The young girl touched words inscribed over a place where trees met craggy peaks.  “What does that say, my love?” her mother prompted.

“Here be dragons,” Rhiannon answered, glancing up at her mother.
         
Her mother nodded, smiling.  She knelt down in front of Rhiannon so they were at the same height.  The lady’s hazel eyes sparkled as she whispered, “I have a secret to share.  But I can only share it with a little girl with red and gold hair,” she pulled playfully on Rhiannon’s braid,” who knows how to read.”  Rhiannon giggled.  “Are you a little girl such as this?” Rhiannon nodded eagerly, and her mother laughed.  She stood up and gestured at a tapestry on the wall.  “Come, child, the dragon guards our treasure.”
         
Hand in hand they walked to the tapestry of the sleeping dragon.  “Your great-great grandmother wove this tapestry when she was an old woman.  It took her a long time to complete, with her hands gnarled so, like the twisted oak by the drawbridge.”  The dragon was curled up in front of a turret, with stone dolmens in a semi-circle behind it, interspersed with trees and a mountain peak in the background and bright blue sky above.  The dragon’s scales were crimson and woven through with glittering gold thread, and its curved horns and talons were gold.  As they paused in front of the large tapestry, Rhiannon looked closely at the eyes of the dragon; she thought perhaps she could see a slit of gold, as if the dragon were only pretending to be asleep.
         
Rhiannon’s mother stood on tiptoe and moved part of the tapestry to the side, revealing a slit in the stone wall.  With her free hand she reached in and drew out a large leather-bound tome.  She motioned her daughter to come sit with her on one of the benches that lined the walls.  “Look and listen well, my daughter,” she said, and ran her fingers along the smooth cover, “this book is our special treasure, and it contains many secrets within its pages.  I am going to teach you how to read them.”  She opened the book as Rhiannon snuggled closer to her, her mother’s loose red-gold hair falling over the girl’s shoulder and brushing the crinkly parchment pages of the book which she turned until she came to the picture of a girl.
         
“The first secret is a story…”

Back cover blurb
A dragon writes a cryptic message with its ember breath in the evening sky...

Lady Rhiannon watches from the turret wall with an ache in her blood. She's the only person who can decipher the message as the sole keeper of the Dragon Tome. When an old enemy threatens the castle, her father charges his knight with escorting her to a safe haven—the same knight Rhiannon had a crush on as a girl. But she must now convince him to change his plans, for she has her own sacred charge to fulfill...

So begins a journey to hidden ruins where magic slumbers in the stones and love lies in the heart, waiting to awaken. As Rhiannon and the knight face seemingly insurmountable odds, only the dragon knows if they can fulfill their destiny...

About the Author
Lori J. Fitzgerald lives in New York with her fellow English Major husband and their two little bookworms. Medieval literature is her passion, and she wishes she could spend more time traipsing around Renaissance Faires and shouting “Huzzah” at jousts. She was a middle school English teacher for many years and was best known for her dramatic readings of The Princess Bride. Lori is currently a Staff Writer for the website Once Upon A Fan, the popular fansite for ABC’s hit show Once Upon A Time. You can contact her by email at WhiteRaven829@gmail.com.

The Dragon’s Message, A Dragon Tome Novelette, 
is available on Kindle and Nook for $1.99


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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Try DISCIPLE for free!

Disciple, Part I 
download it FREE
both Kindle and EPUB formats available at Smashwords and AllRomance

    

Now that I have four volumes of my Disciple series published -- plus the Half-Omnibus to collect the first three parts -- managing where they are on sale takes a bit of work!

constantly updating!

You can always find Disciple at:
AmazonBarnes & NobleSmashwords

And I'm glad to say that my paperbacks are available at:

 

Note that the Half-Omnibus is ebook-only

Stay tuned for Disciple, Part V
and other exciting announcements!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Welcoming UNION OF RENEGADES by Tracy Falbe

Union of Renegades Book Blast

Indie Fantasy for People Who Don’t Do What They’re Told

Union of Renegades: The Rys Chronicles Book I is a free fantasy ebook worldwide. This week fantasy fans can sign up to receive a coupon to get The Goddess Queen: The Rys Chronicles Book II ebook for free. See details below.

About Union of Renegades: The Rys Chronicles Book I

The epic begins as Dreibrand Veta and the conquering Horde of the Atrophane Empire reach a mythic Wilderness that beckons with a magical call to glory. But Onja, Queen of the rys, a race far more powerful than the greatest human state, guards this land. She has the power to imprison souls and her genocidal rage is legendary. Everything is at risk for her desperate enemies, the union of renegades.

Meet the Players – Insights into the Main Characters in Union of Renegades by Tracy Falbe

Dreibrand Veta is in his early 20s when the saga begins. He’s been fighting with the conquering horde of the Atrophane Empire for two years. He is a character born of my disgust with following rules and not getting what you want. He’s an ambitious person but he’s done some things he’s not proud of. When he finds out he’s not going to earn what he expects for his efforts, he makes a decision that will change his life and ultimately influence the history of his world.

Miranda represents a woman at the bottom deciding she’s not going to take it anymore. When I developed the heroine for Union of Renegades I very much did not want her to be an innocent young female. She came from the place inside me that weeps for the suffering and oppression faced by so many women in the world. When the story opens she is kept as a slave by an abusive master. She’s also the mother of two young children. Although she is a compassionate person there is an edge inside her sharpened by hard use.

Shan is a rys with immense magical powers. All rys possess magic but the elite among them are capable of battle magic, mind reading, healing, and even enslaving the souls of the dying. Shan is a young rys who wants to overthrow Onja who rules their race and the humans of the western tribal kingdoms. He abhors her wicked tyranny but to challenge her he must use his magic to kill, something his good heart has never allowed him to do before.

Onja is the Queen of the rys and the Goddess of the people. She has ruled for over two thousand years. Her character represents the status quo, the all-powerful always-been. She believes she has the right to rule because she made the world as it is. During her long reign she closed off her realm from the east with a haunted wilderness, but when a curious whim prompts her to let people through everything will change.

You can download this novel and enter the world of The Rys Chronicles for free.


How to get The Goddess Queen: The Rys Chronicles Book II for free ($4.99 value)

It’s easy. Join my email list and I’ll email you a Smashwords coupon to get The Goddess Queen in your choice of ebook format. Smashwords serves readers worldwide. Fill out the form at this link http://eepurl.com/Tb_9P and I’ll email everyone the coupon code on May 10th. (Form link will expire on May 10th.)

Read 3 Chapters Right Now


Thursday, March 20, 2014

KIYA: RISE OF A NEW DYNASTY by Katie Hamstead

Congratulations to Katie on finishing her trilogy! I was really looking forward to asking her about world-building her ancient Egyptian setting, because it's so very different from our current society. Don't miss the Rafflecopter giveaway, either!

I love research, so I have to ask how much research on Egypt you did in preparation for writing KIYA. Books? Videos? What were your sources?
A ton of research had to go into the story. I had to build a timeline of events and figure out where each of the historical figures fit with their age and where they appeared and disappeared in history. To do this I hit the library and also museum and university websites and journals. I have a list of sites I used for each book, as well as several books on my personal shelf.

What's the oddest thing you learned about Egypt in the process?
The oddest thing? The Egyptians in general were odd; incest, mummification... But I think in general I found myself impressed by them. They were clever and resourceful, understanding things like medicine that other civilizations didn't discover until the 1700/1800's. 

I'm familiar with how much mental adjustment is needed to think about living in a medieval-style society... how difficult was it to feel comfortable describing life in an ancient world like Egypt? Were there any resources that were particularly helpful? 
The Egyptian culture is very different from our own. Things like incest and polygamy that aren't acceptable in our society, were normal every day things. Also, writing the period in a woman's perspective meant understanding the role a woman was expected to play in those times; mother, housewife, property of her husband. These are things that the women would have accepted and not questioned because that's just how it was. It was difficult to dig up information about these things because men wrote history and more often than not, the day to day activities of a woman didn't register as worth recording.

What's one of your favorite aspects of KIYA's world?
All the people. That's my favorite thing about all history. The people who lived in their times shaped their world and as a consequence, ours. I believe these long dead voices still have lessons to teach us with the stories they left behind.

What's the next project in your pipeline?
I have another 2 book series signed with Curiosity Quills due for release later this year, and am currently querying the first book in a sci fi/fantasy series. I'm working on the other books right now, and plan on having seven books total for that series.

Back cover
Tut has grown into his position as Pharaoh, but he is a wild young man. Naomi fears for him, not only because of his recklessness, but because he has put his trust in Ay–the man determined to destroy Naomi—despite her and Horemheb advising against it.

Meanwhile, death and slavery hang over Naomi and her family. With fear of the booming Hebrew numbers causing talk of enslaving them, conscription is reinstated and Naomi fears 
for the lives of her other children. Especially since Ay's children are now adults, and just as dangerous as their father. They threaten to take Itani, conspire against Tut, and pushing for power.

But Tut is in trouble. While Ay's daughter draws Horemheb's attention, and Naomi deals with the struggles of her family, everyone's distraction could spell death for the young Pharaoh.

Available at
AmazonB & NKobo

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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Reader goodies for DISCIPLE, PART IV

Disciple is a fantasy series, so maps are to be expected. All of my books come with a map of the kingdom of Wodenberg, which includes some of its neighbors. Part II and Part III included a city map as well.

Part IV begins to introduce Wodenberg's neighbor Caercoed a bit more. I hope the index in the back of the book helps with the rush of new characters. There's a new map for the place names.

Since an ebook's screen is only so big, I always include a link to the goodies page where readers can see a larger map. Introducing the newest addition to my Reader Goodies page:

Click to embiggen, of course.

Caercoed is divided into five ancient duchies. Within those are an as-yet unknown number of margravates (along the borders) and baronies. A line of high mountains cuts the kingdom off from its neighbors, save for two well-guarded passes: Dwyncraig and Eryr. Nearly all trade comes by sea to the port at Arforddinas.

It's a large and rich land. The alliance between the two kingdoms needs a marriage to cement it solidly, and Prince Kiefan was naturally the top candidate in Wodenberg. Now that he's king, he's even more eligible -- and Kate knows he will obey the saints, however much she loves him or he loves her.

Back cover of Disciple, Part IV
Kate can’t avoid the simple truth any longer; as much as she loves Kiefan, he’s now the king and his duties leave him precious little time for her and their newborn son. Kate’s husband Anders, the ne’er-do-well knight, is the one who kisses her cheek every morning and soothes the baby to sleep on his shoulder. 

Kiefan’s protective jealousy still casts a shadow over her life. He would gladly throw Anders to the wolves if it will keep alliance negotiations from collapsing. Their homeland desperately needs these allies against the invading Empire. The kingdom barely survived the first wave of the enemy’s monstrous army and more is to come. 

But Kate can’t stand by and let Anders become a victim — or let Kiefan suspect she’s falling in love with her husband. 

On sale now at

New to Disciple
The Half-Omnibus collects the first three parts into one meaty ebook.

Or try Disciple, Part I for only 99 cents!
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