The next Aegis of the Gods book is almost ready. There’s something to be said about good covers, and I have worked to try come up with covers that will draw my reader in. I hope my fans appreciate the effort. Covers have always been a drawing point for me, even now when I read primarily on my tablet. When browsing, I always go cover first before I read the blurb and a sample. I just feel the cover is important. Not as important as the contents of the book, as you truly can’t judge a book by it’s cover (sorry, I had to), but a good cover might tell you that the author or publisher cared about what his book looked like to his potential reader.
Tag Archives: Epublishing
From the notes of Jenoah Amelie – First of the Exalted
Prelude to War
I must make these notes before the voices call to me again. Of late, I cannot tell which of the essences they are. Is it light or heat? Or gods forbid, the shade? Does the earth beneath my feet speak to me? Is the very air around me whispering in my head? Or the water I drink? Maybe, it is not the essences within the elements of Mater at all. Maybe, it is all my imagination.
What they promise is so overwhelming. Twice, I have almost given in to their call. Is this what the others experienced when the madness took them? I must defend our actions while I am still capable of coherent thought.
Some would argue that the formation of the Pathfinders was a desperate act, that the men and women who make up their ranks are nothing more than murderers. Some would say we think of ourselves as gods for doing as we did. What were we supposed to do? Sit back and watch the world burn? Again? Did not the war between the gods and the Eztezian Guardians destroy enough of the world?
We, all Matii, are appointed with protecting and saving the people of Denestia first. The same mandate the gods gave to the Eztezians when they created them. When we use Mater—the very essences and elements that drive our world—to destroy, we are betraying the sanctity of our forefathers, and blaspheming against Ilumni himself. We realized the fear of insanity and eventual death when wielding Mater is not enough to deter those who crave power. A more definitive action needed to be taken.
The formation of the Tribunal has worked well for a time. However, the volatile change in Mater has brought about a rift with our brother and sisters. We once held all the descendants of the Eztezians who form the Matii we know today: the Ashishin, the Alzari, the Namazzi, the Svenzar, the Skadwaz, the Desorin, the Rendorta, and the Toscali, under our roof. They each had a position and title of honor here from which they could govern.
But they have not agreed with the need for harmony. Thus, they have broken away and ventured off to form their own kingdoms, the majority of them across the sea in Ostania. We fear nothing good will come of this.
Already the separation and those dedicated to individual gods and religions are beginning to show. Wars have been declared. Crusades for one religion or another have sprouted. We, the Ashishin, must a find a way to sever ourselves from this strife.
Several hours later, after Mensa and the Zar Selentis left to return to the capital, Stefan sat at the table in his pavilion. Two candles in glass holders occupied the table’s center, their perfumed scent overriding the odor of sweaty men. Illuminated by flickering light, the map before him displayed his forces. He removed the pins representing the Alzari Matii. By now, they were well on their way back to Benez under Mensa’s command. Men were going to die because of the King’s order. A great many. In the days to come, the first to perish would mainly be Astocans. Some might say their deaths weren’t much of a loss. Eventually, his own men would number among the dead. A sense of helplessness crowded over him, and he sighed. Yet, he harbored no regrets for his announcement. Somehow, some way, he needed to stay true to his word.
“So what now?” Kasimir asked.
“We do as we have always done … save as many of the enemy as we can,” Stefan said.
Garrick grumbled a protest under his breath.
“I know how you feel about them, Garrick.” Stefan recalled the sight of Garrick’s mangled body and face after his torture by the Astocans. “But this was the one thing King Nerian, myself, and the High Council agreed upon: We would be different from other conquerors and choose to save most of those we defeated, give their people choices. This way, the common folk won’t think of us as tyrants—a lesson history taught us.”
“Use force as necessary for victory and compassion when the battle is won,” Kasimir said. A quote from Henden’s The Disciplines of Soldiering.
“I understand.” Garrick let out a resigned breath. “I still don’t like it.”
“What I don’t get,” Kasimir shifted in his seat and peered at the map, “is why the King ordered us to kill them all and now has withdrawn our Alzari menders.”
Stefan nodded. “Yes, I wondered the same myself. I can’t remember Nerian changing plans without conferring with me in person. So why now? I swear … I feel as if something is amiss back home. I don’t trust Mensa. Any man who is so quick to do anything without questioning motives often has his own plans.”
“You think he had a hand in this?” Garrick scowled.
“Not likely,” Stefan said. “The man barely knows the ass end of a horse. Someone else may be using him, or he’s smarter than any of us suspects. Anyway, unless I speak to Nerian himself, I’m not changing how we do things. We’ll mend as many Astocans as we can.”
“How are you going to accomplish that without our Alzari?” Kasimir leaned back in his chair, armor creaking as he did so.
What makes an author get all warm inside? A good review. Today, I received my first review from one of the bloggers I sent my books out to. When I read Jackie Miller’s review at http://mytowerofbooks.blogspot.com, A smile spread across my face. so much so that my daughter asked “Daddy, are you happy?”
It’s the reviewer, the reader that’s most important to me. You let me know that I created a world you enjoyed, characters you felt, plots that kept you reading. Dialogue that was engaging. I want to keep taking my work to the next level, honing this craft so my readers can lose themselves in the worlds and characters I create, knowing that when they see my name, they can live another life simply by opening the pages of my books and reading.
That is a goal well worth the effort.
In this digital age, there’s nothing so important as the review to the author. Now, I’ll say that applies in general. As an author there’s no greater feeling than knowing a reader enjoyed your book and reviewed it, expressing that pleasure.
That has become even more important with ebooks. There’s no storefront to walk in to. There’s the ebook, the internet and the reader. There are a ton of things to do to increase visibility. Social media rules in that aspect. But what about getting readers to actually read your work?
The first answer would be to write a compelling story and write it well. So now we’re past that part. You have this great book. However, you’re part of the great unknown. You contact bloggers, forums, website owners, other authors and whoever else you need to. You do giveaways.
Your main goal? To get those reviews.The review is often the tipping point to purchasing. Your sales in the long run will be directly affected by those reviews. So will all your future work. Your name is your brand. Write a good book, get good reviews and you will be well on your way.
That’s what your average reader looks at. Whether it be Amazon or Smashwords or Barnes&Noble. They can be elusive and it takes great patience to shop your work around and then wait for the reviews but if you wrote a good book, it’s well worth it.
What a journey.
So, I sit here numb. Why? Well, today my book officially published.
I actually clicked the publish button yesterday and wasn’t sure how I felt then. Well now I can say I’m so elated that I’m numb. Someone pinch me, please.
This started in 2001, when I was working at Verizon. My best friend Hughey and I always got together and talked about the books we read. We both felt there were so many great authors out there, but for some reason, we couldn’t always find the books that moved us the most. You see, we love magic, action, wars. And while we love characters also, those three things are what appeal to us the most. It’s why we loved Jordan, Sanderson, Butcher, Lumley just to mention a few. So my journey began.
After years from when I was in primary school in Barbados to high school here, people told me I had a knack for writing. English Lit and Lang were my best subjects. Along with History, I enjoyed those immensely. Then there was my love for wild life. Couple that with my love for fantasy fiction, this route seemed the most plausible.
I started building my world, and I started writing short pieces. Then I began to seriously look at what I needed to do if indeed I wanted this as a serious future, to be published in any form. I rented and bought books on writing, from Elements of Style to How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy, to everything inbetween, constantly learning the craft. I joined groups online. This eventually led me to the Speculative Collective Group here in NYC. A group of wonderful writers and aspiring novelists, who work in many different fields. And I learned.
Critique after critique, some more brutal than others, I learned. I still remember the first meeting when my work got beat up. But I took that in stride and knew what I needed to do to get better. So I worked on those nuances, and I’m still working on them. From there came a process of refining and rewriting even while my life tended at times to be a mess around me. But in those dark days, I found a love, a passion. This, writing. Creating worlds and peoples and characters wrapped up in their own trials and tribulations and watching as they lived their lives. It’s such a great joy that I cannot begin to describe.
So here it is, Book 1 of Aegis of the Gods, Etchings of Power. I hope you enjoy. And i hope I can make the next one even better.