Book 12 already in the works, and its holiday themed! View in browser

October 26, 2019

"The most amazing adventure with a strong magical influence." - Maxine S

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On the Homefront

Carol and I decided to celebrate the finishing of my eleventh book by heading out to the theatre. If you ever have the opportunity to see 'Beautiful: The Carole King Musical," I highly recommend it!

We've also decided to give dog fostering a try, as we truly appreciate those that fostered Daisy and Tilly before we adopted them. We did meet a possible foster dog this week, but unfortunately, it was so scared it could not relax with other dogs in the house. We will be trying again on Sunday. Wish us luck!

To celebrate the launch of Burden of the Crown on October 30th, we are giving away 2 signed copies! To enter, all you need to do is answer Daisy & Tilly's question below.

Congrats to Gregory. who won last week's Paperback giveaway. Servant of the Crown was my very first published work.

The Evolution of Nobility of Merceria

The land now known as Merceria was initially settled by mercenaries that were fleeing the continent, but this begs the question, where did the nobility come from?

In the early days of the kingdom, troops were organized into companies, each a separate but allied group of warriors, most from different physical regions. These companies were small, ranging from twenty to sixty warriors, but eventually evolved into the standard fifty men per company now common in the kingdom. Companies were then combined into larger organizations, led by the more experienced warriors, leading to a higher rank structure, involving commanders, rather than mere captains.

As the kingdom expanded, some commanders took lands, earning them more influence and power. With their ancestors originally from the continent, it was only natural that these landowners chose the titles used by their forefathers. Being a pragmatic people, the early Mercerians adopted a clear means of determining which rank would be assigned to an individual, based on the population of their domains. This still continues to this day, with the larger cities being ruled by dukes and earls while smaller towns and villages are controlled by barons or viscounts.

In the early days, the leader of the mercenaries was referred to as General. With the acquisition of land, this evolved into king, a position that was intended to be filled by a selection process. As a king, it was in the best interest of an individual to train his own flesh and blood to be a competent general, leading many of the first kings to be related. This then became the defacto method of selection, resulting in the model of inheritance used to this day.

Character Origin – Brother Cyric

A long time ago, when I first started running my campaign, my wife Carol was playing a Life Mage named Bree. She ended up with a follower, a brother of a religious order that was dedicated to this profession. I named him Cyric and eventually, he became a life mage himself, returning to his order to teach others the magic he had learned.

Now, many players would simply have the follower tag along as an extra warrior, but Carol continuously engaged him in conversation, requiring me to fill in more and more of his back story, to the point he became almost a full-fledged player character.

In Ashes, Cyric is not a mage at all, but the inquisitive and thoughtful Brother of Saint Mathew is still, in essence, the same man. He is well-educated, at least for the world in which he exists, and is devoted to his religion without being fanatical, a characteristic that sets him apart from many others.

Cyric is already the subject of a couple of short stories I have written, and which will eventually be compiled into The Chronicles of Cyric. Like my other series, his tales will take place in the same world, but the plots themselves will be smaller, often involving only a few people and seldom,  if ever, being of the epic proportions of my other books.

Of course, that doesn’t preclude him from showing up in others series from time to time, though I don’t want to give anything away.

My apologies for the video not working last week. Sometimes it is a bit of a learning curve when you try something new. The good news is that I now have a Youtube Channel - well I already had one, but was not using it. From now on I will be posting my videos to this channel after they are complete.

Upcoming Facebook Live Schedule:
Monday, Oct 28 - 5:30 PM EST (-4UTC)
Sunday, Nov 3 - 10:00 AM EST (-4UTC)

Ask question for my next Facebook Live Video!
Check out my previous videos on Youtube
Work in Progress Update

Embers is now complete, at least the first draft. There will, of course, be multiple rounds of editing, but I can now turn my attention to my next little project, a short story entitled 'A Midwinter Murder'. It features Brother Cyric, a Temple Knight of Saint Mathew, and his visit to a duke’s estate in honour of the holidays. I bet you can’t figure out what happens next!

This will not be a novel, likely tracking closer to 25,000 words or so, and my main reason in writing it is to offer something with a holiday theme to it. It also allows me to play around with some ideas I’ve been thinking of and lets me stretch my writing skills.

I’m enjoying writing it so far, and I’ll likely be finished the first draft by the end of next week. My hope is to have it available for the Christmas Holidays. If you like a murder mystery with a fantasy element, I’ll be interested to see what you think.

Strangely enough, I can’t find any other books in this genre. Oh well, you can’t have it all.

Till next time, Happy reading!

Book Launch & Signing

Join me for the launch of my latest book, Burden of the Crown, at Chapters, South London, on November 2, from 11 am to 3pm and receive a FREE bookmark!

Author Spotlight!

Check out these featured books that are free, discounted, or new releases. The authors are returning the favour by sharing my books with their readers.

Sworn Guardian: Gone. They're all gone. His level. Magicka points. Memory. Everything... Waking aboard an unfamiliar ship missing all the attributes he spent years earning, Aren remembers little except that his sister, Claire, is in mortal danger. "Save me. Save the Empire." Those were the last words she'd ...

Dragon Rider: An Elf and his Dragon unearth a buried truth that will change the war forever... A city in the throes of civil war.  Noble Elves, crafty Goblins, treacherous men and sorcerous lizard-folk at one another's throats. An Elf and his Dragon steed disobey a direct command in order to rescue a friend...

The Caged Kingdom: A woman forged by fire. A girl the curse has chosen. A Soldier with a secret. An ancient enemy. A world on the brink of mayhem. Welcome to Brodanna... Only magic or your skill with a blade might save you. Katanya Leshi is one of the most powerful Wielders left in the Kingdom ...

Book Giveaways & Deals!

While you wait for the release of my next book, here are some great stories for your TBR pile!

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