An insight into how I write characters. View in browser

April 11, 2020

"I started this in the morning took a little nap and finished before bedtime."- Harland

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On the Homefront

The weather here has been strange, to say the least. We've had warm days (up to 15 Celsius), and then yesterday came along, and it decided to snow! What can I say, we live in Canada where it's winter overnight, spring in the morning, and nearly summer by midday!

Our daily walks take us past one of Tilly's friends, who runs on the other side of a chain-link fence as Tilly rushes back and forth. This tends to tire her out quite a bit, leading to long naps on the couch.

Daisy, on the other hand, is content anytime she gets out for a walk. For her, it's more about sniffing than actually walking, something that makes the entire expedition more time-consuming. Oh, well, at least we all get some fresh air.

For the foreseeable future, my wonderful Dawgs have decided that they want to keep you busy, and I also wanted to make sure that you downloaded my free short story from last week, so here it is again. (And yes, I might just have something special for you next week!)

Simply click on the button below and you will receive a FREE copy of The Frozen Flame Prequels.

Read The Frozen Flame Prequels for FREE!
Creating realistic characters for my stories.

When I first come up with an idea for a book, I generally write a brief description, usually only a paragraph or so. I have dozens of these in various stages, some of which I’ll use, some I’ll discard, and some will worm their way into other tales as secondary plots. One thing I always think about, however, is the main characters. To me, they are real people, with backstories and experiences. I prefer to not use the old ‘gifted young farmboy with magical powers’ approach, but I can see the allure for an author. After all, the young character requires little in the way of history, or at least that’s what people think.

However, real people are complex, and learning is lifelong. Can you honestly say you’re the same person you were twenty years ago? This is assuming, of course, that you’re old enough to say that at all. We are all influenced by those around us, both positively and negatively, and I try to incorporate that into my stories.

My characters also evolve, as do real people. They grow up, have relationships, maybe even get married and/or have children. Each character is an individual, the central figure in their own story if you will, and I hope that comes through in my writing.

Some even take on a life of their own, driving the storyline in unexpected directions. In my Heir to the Crown series, Albreda was initially intended to be a very secondary character, but I had so much fun writing her that I couldn’t let her disappear into the dustbin of history. Now, she even has her own origin story!

I mention this because, as I continue to work on Temple Knight, the characters are starting to come alive. I can’t just let them disappear once the story is done, so you can expect to see more of them in the future.

Check out theses reviews for Defender of the Crown
Buy a copy today!

Or you can win a FREE digital copy of Defender of the Crown (or your choice of book)! Congrats to Cassandra who won last week's question. It was interesting to find out my readers are looking forward to Fury of the Crown, followed by Temple Knight, and then Flames. To enter this week's giveaway, all you need to do is answer the question below.

Work in Progress Update

Temple Knight currently sits at 70,000 words and is progressing nicely through the second act. Without giving away the plot, this story involves ships, leading me down the rabbit hole of research. When we typically think of ships from medieval times, we think of cogs and carracks, maybe even caravels, though those are a little later. In this story, I wanted to involve an Elven ship, and for that, I needed something different. Thanks to the Internet, I learned all about what makes a modern sailing ship fast and incorporated some of those elements into the storyline. Of course, I added some fantasy elements into the mix, including the use of magic in its construction.

I’ve always enjoyed a good sea yarn and have read all of CS Forester’s Hornblower books, along with a myriad of stories from other authors that write of the same period. I find the idea of a large scale ship battle quite interesting, but the addition of magic should make it even more so. Make no bones about it, Temple Knight is heading toward a major clash at sea. I only hope I can do it justice.

Until next time, Happy reading!

Author Spotlight!

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

Fate of Wizardoms Books 1-3: Power. The ambitious thirst for it. But when a power-hungry wizard lord seeks to expand his rule, he triggers events unforeseen. 

The balance of magic is altered, races of old return, and beasts of legend stalk the land. Fate of Wizardoms is a rebirth of classic epic fantasy, told in a fast-paced style and loaded with beloved genre tropes, perfect for fans of Lord of the Rings, The Witcher, or Wheel of Time.

1,000 pages of magic, adventure, & intrigue. Where wizards rule, magic reigns supreme.

Tales from Thac: Dragons, pirates, magic and deceit. Thac is no place for the faint of heart… 

Grand Choosing: Kortiama longs to prove herself at the Day of Choosing. Yet that day will hold more for her than she ever bargained for, if she manages to survive.
Art of the Steal: Where did the enigmatic Donatello come from? Where did he learn to be a thief, artist, and swordsman? 

These and other thrilling tales are included here in this fantastic anthology from the world of Thac…

Sorcerer's Quest: An orphaned boy, uncontrollable magic, and a quest to save a nation's honor.

In a nation that shuns magic, a young man unleashes his new abilities against his school bully. He’s forced to slip out of the country when others find out. Now he must find a master to teach him how to control the magic, before it destroys those around him. 

Will he find help along the way and gain admittance to the university, or will be forever outcast from his home with no hope of redemption?

Once Upon Another World: Not all fairy tales are as they appear. 

Was it actually Red who hunted the wolf? What if the prince was the one in distress? Did the straw really get spun into gold? How well did those glass slippers truly fit? 

Where princesses do their own rescuing, princes aren’t who they first appear to be, and beasts are friends, not foe—and maybe something more…

Discover 22 twisted fairy tales with a happily ever after unlike anything you’ve ever read before.

Book Deals & Giveaways

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

Did you miss any past Giveaways & Deals?
Magic & Adventure
Fantasy & Magical Reads Giveaway
SCI-Fi and Fantasy Giveaway
Another SCI-Fi & Fantsy Giveaway
Series Starter Giveaway
Wayward Magic Giveaway

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