Fun Friday

What Got Cut – Excerpt from The Goddess’ Veil

Introduction

Today, I thought it would be a bit fun to share a small bit that was cut from The Bow of Hart Saga. It was meant for a sub-plot that ran parallel to the main story but in a different part of Denaria – which doesn’t even appear on the maps in the book. However, all of this sub-plot was cut to create a simpler plot that was less confusing.

However, I have so much written it seems a waste not to use it at all so I’m seriously considering the publication of this material as a novella series or a single book. Here’s a short portion of what I wrote about a character named Sramsurash who is a monk who’s done something quite rash. He’s now thinking back over what he’s done which is what this scene describes. Read on and I’ll share more of why this was cut at the end:

Excerpt

A distant, rumbling growl echoed down the length of the pass. The monk froze in his steps hardly daring to breathe. Had that sound been some animal or the passage of wind? Maybe it was a falling boulder whose crash onto road had echoed strangely in the gorge. He swallowed hard at the thought of some ravenous animal tracking him. Sramsurash hurried on while looking over his shoulder as thoughts of worse things than bears flitted through his mind. The temple kept terrible creatures and he suddenly wondered if one had been sent to track him.
Sramsurash frowned at the thought. He had been rash in his actions, having planned for nothing of a trip – no food or clothing suitable for his needs. While he had walked the hallway to the goddess’s chamber with growing trepidation his only thought had been to take the veil. In sudden conclusions after long meditation, the monk had acted. He remembered pausing outside the rooms, wearing his padded slippers so soft and quiet but his heart pounding in his ears loudly.

The monk knew he had trembled but he had still crept into the rooms. He had shuffled across the carpets hoping to avoid anything in his way but there had been nothing. The goddess had been reputed to be a light sleeper and the slightest of disturbances would have awakened her. Indeed, Sramsurash was still surprised he had actually been able to take the filmy cloth from the stand where it hung in the pale moonlight that spilled across the inner chamber where the indescribably beautiful avatara lay upon her bed.

He had been sweating profusely when he exited the goddess’s rooms and found to his surprise he held the veil dangling in his grasp in plain sight. But it was more than fear that had distracted him he now realized. He had stowed the wondrous item within his voluminous robes and slipped noiselessly down the halls to his chambers, thinking he might hide the goddess’s sole garment until he could decide what to do and thus steal power from her by rendering her incapable of appearing in public. But along the way a blinding realization had struck his mind that he must leave the temple or be discovered and slain. Had not the guards seen him go and return?

The monk had diverted himself and left by a little used door. There was no thought to destroying the veil. He had seen the veil lain over open flames and simply smother them out. Sramsurash could only assume the veil held some magical or supernatural power that, thin as it was, it could not be quickly destroyed by a simple flame.

The monk had fled until he could decide what best to do. He had traveled west in the night opposite to the direction he was supposed to be going in the next week for his lone pilgrimage. All through the night he had stumbled down the road as fear grew in his mind that he should hear the sound of pursuit from the dreadful knights of the avatara. Indeed, such was his fear that as dim dawn grew on the horizon behind him that the monk had paused along the way to consider his next actions carefully. Holding the veil he had gazed at the seemingly frail cloth. He was not used to this fear since his life as a priest had been one of ease and repetitious ritual but now he knew he must decide a precise course of action.

Sramsurash remembered now his foolishness as he stumbled down the cold mountain road. Lost in his reverie of careful thought, the monk had not heard the swift approach of horses until they were just around a bend and almost on him. He had turned to run and fallen. But the veil had fluttered down over him and covered him with its large expanse. In the scant time it took the monk to take a few shuddering breaths the horses, carrying the fearsome knights had thundered into sight and passed him where he had lain on the side of the road in plain sight with the item of his offense in just as plain sight.

This event puzzled the monk even now. He could not see how the horsemen had missed his cringing form along the ditch but they had. He had wondered at this and thought at first if it was just the near darkness. But Sramsurash now doubted this as he hugged himself in the cold and slapped himself to stay warm. Had the veil some quality of hiding such that it had saved him from the knights and certain death?

Commentary

As you can tell, this is a very rough draft and needs a lot of work which is one reason it was cut – as a sub-plot it made the rest of the series cumbersome. I also wrote this before I start using deep point-of-view that is used in my current series novels so the style is rougher. There’s a lot of telling and almost no conversation until much later on in the scene. I’ve learned much better about developing the beginning of a book than I knew back in 2011-14 when I was working on this (don’t form an opinion about The Bow of Hart Saga based on this – it more of a sample of what got cut, why and how I’m going to use it in the future once it’s re-developed).

However, there are more problems that have to be corrected. This bit of remembering by Sramsurash should be show as its own scene to open the book and introduce the character and his motivations. Additionally, the setting of the far western empire of Gantura should also be better established – something which I did not have time to do. There are a number of other issues with it being a sub-plot such as tying it together with the main plot of The Bow of Hart Saga – these two stories just did not have enough overlap to make them mesh well. I concluded that it was best to pull this out and work on it another time which I’ll likely begin pretty soon after completing some other novel rough drafts.

Conclusion

Thanks for stopping by to read the excerpt today. Please excuse both the lack of artwork and how rough the work is but I hope it shows why I cut it from my series and on direction I’ll be going in the near future. Feel free to leave your questions and thoughts in the comments section and I’ll reply as soon as I can (I’m traveling today so it may take some time).

Also, please remember I’ve just released the digital boxed set of The Bow of Hart Saga on Amazon just this week – have a look at it!

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Fun Friday – Covering Covers for Broken Shield

Wednesday went so well, I thought I’d share another pre-made cover that interested me in my quest to self-publish the first book of my next series. While I have quite a lot of work to do on The Broken Shield Chronicles, it’s fun to consider covers based on my ideas. Since a knight plays a major role in the series, many of the pre-made covers I’m looking at such images that involve knights. It can also be helpful to see knights as I’m developing and writing this new epic fantasy which will likely have some LitRPG elements to it.

This one is call Knight’s Revenge and it’s available on The Book Cover Designer and was created by Szabo S. Renato, with photography by Katherine Tarawhiti.

 

This one interested me simply for the image of a knight. Again, the title is not the real title, just a place holder. I’m not as interested in this one as I am some others, but I’m open to comments. For it or against it, let me know your reaction to this pre-made cover.

To Sequel or Not to Sequel – It’s a Good Question

Hello to all the Archer’s Aim readers. Life has been a whirlwind lately but I’ve been making some progress on several writing projects. However, I wanted to pause and answer a question that seems to get bigger and bigger with each month:

Will there be another book to The Bow of Hart Saga?

Based on the number of these questions I’m getting, there likely will be another book but not as part of the core trilogy that is currently out. I know that I left the door open for another book or two and that was somewhat by design. I understand that, while I’ve wrapped up the series nicely, there are fans who want more. Honestly, the request for a sequel cropped up from my daughter who also asked for a prequel series. So, I left the saga with a bit of an opening to move toward a sequel as opportunity allowed.

 

Why not just write another book or two for the saga? There are several reasons not to write anything new immediately. One will become clear very soon. However, another reason is that I have several other projects in the works that are under proposal to publishers at the moment. I need to complete these as soon as I can. I’m also working on development of another series named The Broken Shield Chronicles

Yet, I have been getting the requests for more about Athson and Limbreth and I’m pleased so many people like these characters and want more from them. Since I’m getting these sequel requests, I’m happy to give readers more as soon as I can. I have begun consideration for at least a sequel and maybe another trilogy along with a prequel.

However, to provide a further taste of the world of Denaria, I’m also going to write a short series named the Goddess Veil. Each book should be short but will include some possible cameos from a few minor characters in The Bow of Hart Saga as well as a villain (readers can guess who it is). I just need some time to get this series and the sequel underway as fast as I can.

I suppose I never expected this debut series to do as well as it has so I never planned anything else except to finish what I started long ago (meaning several decades). Let me start the process now and ask readers a few questions:

Who are your favorite characters?

What do you see happening to some of these characters?

What questions do you still have about Denaria that you think would interest you in a sequel?

A few ideas have presented themselves to me so far, but I’d love to hear readers thoughts about what intrigues them so I can address them. Are you interested in learning more about Withlings? Do dwarves interest you? Are there other places you see on the big map that draw your attention? Do you want to know what happens in Hart? What will happen in Grendon?

There are any number of ways another book can go and I’m happy to consider suggestions. Please leave your thoughts in the comments below this post or contact me using my email address or other social media. If you would like to read some alpha or beta material, please let me know and we can set up a discussion group somewhere or you can join me in my Facebook or Goodreads private groups. In the meantime, look for a big announcement about The Bow of Hart Saga next week that should clarify why I’m waiting just a little while with the next editions and why I’m leaving the series in its current form as a trilogy.