Tybalt Perdition out Thursday!

So after more than a year of edits and revisions, Tybalt Perdition arrives this Thursday!

It’s the first tale of Caldyr’s adventures as a fairy detective and it tells of her meeting Reynardine, the dread fox and trickster. (Also it’s book #0 of the Glass Fate series and an introduction to the world in general.)

In another world, a ship sinks above an ancient reef. In the icy waters, among scores of drowning sailors, she was born.

Caldyr Prayers is a mostly normal fairy, but a not-so-normal detective, especially for Stockton, California. She’s looking to make a name for herself and build a real life; a proper legacy as the World’s foremost fairy private eye. She’s just gotta get off the ground with her wings tied behind her back (to keep her fairyhood secret from the humans.) All she needs is a chance…

And in walks Reynardine Slybold—the Dread Fox. God, trickster, seducer, petty thief, and chaos in a lurid suit. But he just might have a legitimate case for Caldyr. He’s giving up his divinity and needs her to find a solution to his oldest feud. If she can solve the Fox’s problems, and keep them alive, the fairy could make a few much needed bucks… maybe even a name for herself.

You can pre-order the ebook on Amazon right now for a dollar.

And’s here’s the promised bit from the prologue. Enjoy!

**

Fryhel, Elledgya

Fairies aren’t created in a normal way. A surge of emotions infuses a spark into the nearest element and life itself springs from nothing save the barest flicker of consciousness. Some are born of fire, some plants, some air, and of course, some are born from water.
Near Uyntolt, in the arctic waters above the Cinder Reefs, three hundred and eighty-one souls were lost to the starving tides. In the depths among the dying sailors of the Grimalkin Prayers, she thought and she was.
The ocean shifted hard against itself, drawing into a bright orb; the luminous heart of a water fairy. All on its own, the glowing sphere began to spin.
Flesh curled from the center, stretching and twisting to form the fairy’s body. A neck wound into shape, expanding into a round head. Silver eyes, hard and cold as the ocean, formed above a short nose. From the core stretched two arms, followed close by two legs. Wings shot from her back, hardening into dark leather. Long feathery tendrils twisted around her ear holes, drawing air into the fairy’s single lung. Her white tongue ran over two rows of razor teeth. Black hair, short and choppy, floated and mixed with her long gills. Flexing her fingers, she drew them closed, her new eyes taking in the blue digits.
A giant hand broke water next to the fairy. Too close. She lunged, grabbed the fingers and dug her teeth into the palm’s soft meat.
Coppery warmth filled her mouth. The hand shook and she clung tight, drinking in the sweet fluid. Tingles shook one newly formed wing, but the food kick-started her head even further—thoughts and ideas, power and knowledge, all sparked with the nourishing blood.
After an extra hard shake, she lost her grip and tumbled backward through the inky waters. The fairy turned to look at what she fed upon. A human, bubbles escaping his open mouth, drifted into the cold blue. The air pockets covered his face, but she could imagine terror. Silver eyes wide, the fairy watched the body fall to the Deep.
All around her more of the giants sunk. Ocean life floated from below, dark shadows preying on the humans.
Young cetus, short-snouted crocodilians with pale skin, darted in and out of view. The monsters snatched prey, drug them into the dark and leaving trails of blood to mark their path.
Pink skin caught the fairy’s eyes, a mermaid feasting on a corpse in the safety of the reef. Crouched between two limbs of black coral, the mermaid ate fast, until enough blood filled the water to shield her from sight.
Other merpeople joined, rising from the dark to feed and fight over pieces of the dead and drowning. They celebrated the feast with haunting song, dark magic choruses swearing peace could be found in their arms. The spellsong passed through the fairy, but the humans floated easily into the deadly embraces.
Deep below, in the glowing depths that gave the Cinder Reefs their name, a shadow passed. Larger enough to be a kraken or sea dragon, the phantom blocked all light.
The fairy had seen more than enough.
Hard wings beats propelled her upward, she rose fast, aiming for the surface. Breaking through with a splash, she flew higher into the air and surveyed the carnage.
Broken wood, cloth, barrels, and bodies dotted the ocean. A few people clung to the debris, but they didn’t have a chance this close to the reef. The twin suns rose in the distance, blue and red gifted a soft purple morning sky.
The shipwreck was prime feeding grounds above the waves, too, birds and tiny saurians flitted through the air. One swooped low and snapped at the fairy. With a gesture, she pulled water upward and knocked the nasty creature into an early grave.
The fairy searched for land; the frenzy grew beneath her and she didn’t want to risk more time in the open. A green blur of trees and grass caught her eye, not far off from where she flapped. She pushed her new wings hard. Air whistled around her ear holes and drowned out the clamor.
A figure stood on the shore, white-blond hair and a blue dress. The fairy angled her flight toward the human. A lifeboat waited on the beach next to the woman.
Closer up the fairy could tell she was a woman, the other variety of giant. A man looked like the one she bit in the water.
The fairy knew the difference like she knew how to fly, or how to move water. There was nothing solid in her head, yet facts stood out. Ideas, names, senses, strange concepts she had no context for poured through her.
The world should feel new, but already time’s rusty hooks latched onto her soul.
As she approached, the old instincts kicked hard. A deep tingle in her left wing carried a buzz of alarm, although no name attached to the feeling. The fairy landed on the bow of the lifeboat, crouched to cover her naked body, and prepared to spring.
Humans could easily crush her at this size. Caution would keep her alive, until she learned enough to survive.
She looked back over the destruction and with a small cough, the tiny blue fairy spoke her first word, “Fuck.”
“Hello, little fairy. I’m Lucretia Caldyr.” The old woman’s soft voice carried an odd tinge. Hectic, but barely controlled. The fairy could feel it meant—nothing. A blank. But she knew something was off.

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#TalesNoir (I Started a Writing Prompt Game)

Anyone who follows me on twitter may have just possibly happened to notice that I perhaps enjoy the odd writing prompt game, now and then.  Just a smidgen.

So I started my own (I wasn’t drinking, and it wasn’t one am. So a mature decision, see I am a grown up. I’m going to have a few gram-grams and some chocolate milk to reward myself).

  I called it #TalesNoir and the first day is Wednesday 12/28!

talesnoir1

 

It’s for horror, dark, gothic, and noir fiction.  All writers are welcome.  The usual rules about courtesy and civility apply.  Also twitters posting rules, of course.

The optional theme is a looser one, since we’re such a specific game.  For example the first is starts or beginnings so any lines that pertain to the first of something, or new meetings, settings, anything.  Also the theme is optional.  Long as it’s got that touch of night, then it’s welcome and thanks for sharing.

So that’s about it. I hope to see you there, I’d love to hear a few darker voices among the writer community.

And while I’ve got you here:  Thanks to all my readers in 2016 and in the many, many years that will follow.  Long way yet, but I’m feeling like we’re coming up on phase two.

Merry Christmas, Feliz Navidad, Happy Whatever Holidays You Do Celebrate (Or If None Then Just Have A Nice Day), And A Bright Shining New Year. 

Thoughts for Food

A Loose Collection of Thoughts on Food and Writing.

World Building

In cold northern Fryhel for almost every meal they serve bread and ‘fairy butter’.

To start it’s called fairy butter because it’s made in Southern Cyok by fairies.

It’s made from a coconut like fruit, reddish according to the locals. When prepared it produces a thick yellowish red oil.  The oil is cooked at a low temperature with orange peels and other citruses for about six hours, then shipped in casks.  Served on heated bread they say eating the butter will stave off illness and diseases of the mouth.

The people of Fryhel got no clue what scurvy actually is, or vitamin C, but we do and good chance your reader does.  (And a people that live off meat and fish alone are a little boring). Continue reading

A Twitter Post

The Strumbellas, again, The Bird That Follows Me.

So ’bout that blue bird.

I started twitter on February 10th.  I’m socially awkward and I always have been.  You can’t be a hermit author anymore though, the industry is changing.  Flooding and morphing and settling into this strange new era. Continue reading

Word Counts (and upping them)

Okay well, if you follow me on twitter (and if you don’t please feel morally obligated to do so now at this link here. @john_cordial ) then you’ve seen these posts popping up with the little pictures, and thanks, and numbers. 2.7k. 3.5k. 4.8k. 5.7K.

Continue reading

Free Space: Forest Fun.

 

(This Free Space is sort of a Journal/Methods post. Why is it in FS? It didn’t really fit either of the others. It’s just sort of a ramble/record of writing.)

I just wrote a short. A Walk in the Park. Kint, some teenagers, a forest. Check it out. I’d read it before this post, otherwise it’s going to get weird(er) up in here for you.

I’m going to talk about inspiration and influences in the writing of it. (Besides caffeine, my ever faithful companion.)

Music

Music

First off Song List. A very action orientated piece it was pretty much all fast paced rock and punk. Here’s my top 5 most listens for the writing portion.

Linkin Park – Keys to the Kingdom: Kint’s fight song. I listen to it as I plan out a lot of his fight scenes and this one was rife with them.

Modest Mouse – Lampshades on Fire: A song I like. No real relation to Kint or the story, but I listened to it about ten times while writing/editing.

The Dropkick Murphys – Rocky Road to Dublin: In the St. Patrick’s day mood, I guess. Although I do listen to a fair bit of Murphys regularly.

Offspring – Mission From God: Definitely a good song for Kint. Also a favorite of mine, although my all time favorite Offspring songs are ‘Want you Bad’ and ‘You’re Gonna Go Far Kid’.

Rise Against – Prayer of the Refugee: Actually the first song I listened to when as I started out the story. Inspired the fire bit in the beginning, and the story being set at night. Also a song of Kint’s, he’s an independent sort of guy.

For editing I always slow it down. Also I put the music player I’m using on autoplay or random. Either that or longer pieces, often full albums. I like to focus a lot on the task in front of me when I edit and switching songs, and the songs themselves are less important for that. Two Steps From Hell and The Decemberists are favorites for my editing stages.

DragonForce for when I get tired. Songs without words, or with those I know so well they fade to me.

Dryad

Remember this episode?

Influences

This is a lot harder. With the songs I can just make a note of each listen. A bit of work, but not that bad when I can just glance through my internet history.

What the hell was I thinking though?

Or more accurately, where did those thoughts come from. Well Kint is Kint. Check around the rest of the site. He’s my main OC for now. My literary home-slice. My samurai Sherlock. (Note to self: Explore that as series tagline)

Dryads? Scooby-Doo and Batman. First time I ever heard of them. Lots of Greek myths, and other legendary tales as a child. Ents partially, and Tolkien for that. C.S. Lewis, of course. Besides that, well I like to play with my fears. Forests at night? Worse thing that could happen in said forest? (next to giant spiders) ‘Trees coming alive.’ Yeah, scariest forest I can imagine.

Forests themselves? Oregon. California too. Places are filthy with them. It’s awesome. I could never live in the woods but it’s fun to visit. I saw a picture on twitter that suggested, possibly as a prompt, to make an Urban Fantasy set in the woods. I didn’t really make note of it, but I remember seeing it about a week ago. Clearly that had to have some effect.

Dave and Jenna? What’s a dark woody night without a couple bright young things getting up to hi-jinks? I wanted to put Kint off his game though. What’s more painful than seeing a face you loved from the past? What’s worse? Fear in their eyes, or distrust, whatever hurts you most really, but for Kint it was fear.

Plotting

Well I wanted it intense. I wanted people to be worried, and on edge for parts, and I wanted to include the above elements. So I put them together using the usual loose plotting.

Besides that, I just wrote it as one action scene. I trusted the reader (Something I’m working on a lot) to know they were in the forest, after I had said it. I wanted to leave a lot more description in, but I just felt like it cluttered the place up. Minimalism is good for action scenes, especially extended ones.

Also, I avoided the obvious. Kint telling Dave ‘I’m Kint’ after the Dryad attack. (He’s not even Kint, that’s a nom de guerre. Why he avoids an alias he chose is explained much better than I ever could here. Thanks @writerology!)

Checking on Jenna regularly. Her condition doesn’t change much, so I just edited her bits out. Again, I’m trusting the reader to remember a fairly dramatic scene (Not a stretch at all) and I’m building some tension. Constantly saying she’s not dead yet served no purpose in such a short story.

The end? Did Kint hook up with Rikki? Eh, I dunno. Like I said earlier, I trust the reader. Short stories over, so its up to them now.

Well that’s all the words I have, on this subject. If you like the story, or the blog on the writing of the story, just let me know in the comments or find me on twitter. I’d love to hear from you.