Whispers from the Ruins

Ruins speak to me. Maybe its because I can feel the layers of history in the ax and chisel marks still left behind. Time never quite erases them all. I run my fingers along the surface grooves and crevices, and history becomes overwhelmingly real. My voice goes silent; I don't want to talk. It is time to listen to what the ruins have to say.

The story is always happy at first; times were prosperous, and so much excitement and energy went into the structure's construction. How long did those prosperous times last? For a mere few years or for generations? Ultimately, though, fortunes changed. Perhaps a catastrophic battle, or a raging fire compromised it's sturdy walls. Or it could have faced a slow, withering death by neglect as the money for its upkeep ran out. Each ruin has its own story--of life, love, and death--for the people who roamed its halls as well as for the very structure itself. Writer's block is no match for a walk through a ruin. In the absence of the real thing, though, pictures will do.

In Journey to Aviad, Elowyn encounters the ruin of what was once a Temple to Aviad. Even in its crumbling state, it is still a sacred place...a powerful place. Its walls tell her stories as she lovingly pulls away the vines that are trying to tear down what little is left. The ruins speak to her, just as they speak to me. They tell her something about her world's history, but even more importantly, they tell her about Aviad, and the experience changes her.

Have you ever explored a ruin? Toured a jumble of walls and archways that were once part of a castle, or encountered what was left of a stone fence? Maybe you discovered an old foundation peeking through the grass, or drove by an abandoned farmhouse with a sagging barn ready to collapse. Did you wonder about its story? Did those ruins speak to you? If so, what did they say?

(Top image from castle ruins in Ireland. Bottom image the remains of Tintagel Castle in Cornwall, England.)

I've still got answers...but I need more questions!

In my last newsletter I set up a survey so that you could ask either me or my characters questions. The intent was to have a reader-driven interview, rather than an author-driven one. The problem is, I only got 3 questions! So I'm going to leave the survey open for another round. If you haven't read my books yet, that's OK--go ahead and ask me about my series to see if you think you'll like it. Read some of the books already? I'll be happy to answer your burning questions (as long as they aren't spoilers, of course). Have some fun asking my characters some questions, too. They each have a unique perspective on life and events happening in their world. Ready? 

Click to ask your question--don't be shy!

Here are answers to the questions I received so far...

1) What is my genre?
Christian Fantasy. The Christianity is allegorical in my world (like in Lewis' Narnia) rather than a straight representation of Christian history as we know it. Though it is NOT specifically Young Adult fiction, my books are always family safe--no gore, swearing, or other inappropriate content.

2) How does my faith influence my writing?
My faith by nature is integrated into every part of my life, writing included. It was only natural that my characters would live lives of faith as well. That doesn't mean everything is perfect for them. They struggle with difficult circumstances, questions, and doubts like the rest of us, and the right path isn't always the clear or easy one.

My books are in some ways a dialogue about real, every day faith. A dialogue between me and God, between me and my characters, and between me and my readers. I hope that my books spark a dialogue that doesn't stop there, but keeps on going long after their covers have been closed.

3) Do I think my books would be enjoyable by atheists? Yes--I do have fans who are atheists (as well as fans who don't like fantasy). The use of allegory allows anyone to enjoy my stories. However, Christians in particular will enjoy peeling away the surface and exploring the rich spiritual layers beneath.

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Discover New Authors

Indie and small press authors work hard to market themselves, and we all depend on each other for support. So I've signed up with Book Boast (formerly NewsletterSwap), where authors can feature each other in their newsletters. It helps readers too--you never know what unknown book, or author, will be your new favorite!

Full disclosure, here--I may not personally read all of the books I feature in this section, but I am actively seeking Christian fiction and/or CLEAN READS. If nothing else, these books should be safe. I will only feature one new author per newsletter as requests come in. If you find a new favorite from these sections of my newsletter, I'd love to hear about it!

Twenty-Four Potential Children of Prophecy

Henina tends to irritate people. She can't help it — she's bad at shutting her mouth. So when a prophecy is made that someone will stop the war, she figures she's the worst possible choice.

Too bad.

The Fates have their sights set on her, and it will take all her cleverness and quite a lot of offending the king to foist the prophecy off on somebody else instead.

But she can do it. After all, there are a lot of potentials to choose from.

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Clean, Humorous YA Fantasy - $3.99

Allison D. Reid, Christian Fantasy Author

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