Planning

Upcoming Fantasy Titles by P. H. Solomon

Hey everyone! It’s been a while. I’ve taken some time away for health reasons, but I’ve begun work on books for the rest of the year so here’s the latest news.

The Bow of Hart Sage/World of Denaria:

  • The Bow of Hart Saga:
    • The White Arrow – I expect to release this book in print on 3/15/21 or thereabout. This will complete the series in print and I hope to make all three print books available as a bundle at some point. I’ll announce this development if it is possible at a later date, probably late in the year.
  • Empire’s Deception Trilogy (parallel to The Bow of Hart Saga)
    • Face of the Goddess: This book is in rough draft.
    • Monk’s Gambit: This rough draft is almost finished.
    • Deception’s Veil: This final book of the two series is in planning stages
    • This series is not on the schedule for release this year, but book 1 could make it onto the 2022 schedule depending on time available and the same could happen during the latter part of next year.
  • The Bow of Hart Saga (sequel, series title pending): This series is in planning stages and will follow the events of The Empire’s Deception Trilogy series. I do have some development ideas written about this series but it is likely a 2023 release depending on other projects already on the schedule.

The Cursed Mage Case Files:

  • The Order of the Dark Rose – print is underway. I had intended to publish this format in November but I was sick and really had not time to complete this. It’s underway and I hope it will be ready in April. I’ll announce the date as soon as I can.
  • Book 2 of the series is titled The Unseen Hand. I’ve started revision work on this book to get it to my editor for March. My intended publication date is late April or by mid-May if all goes well. There’s quite a lot to do so this date may slide some.
  • Book 3 of the series is not titled but I’m thinking of something like, The Infernal Plot. While book 2 is with my editor, I’ll revise this draft and hopefully have it edited in April with a release date during the summer. Again there’s a lot of work to be done to get this to publication so this target may slide to close to Labor Day as necessary.
  • Books 4-6 are roughly outlined so I hope to begin writing them within a few months as time allows. My intention is to publish these during 2022 but there’s no set schedule yet.

Black Glove (series title pending):

  • A Charm in the Hand – this book is drafted and it’s revision almost complete. I’ll send it to my editor by early April with hopes of publication for this first in series novel in the Fall of this year. My fingers are crossed to get this in this year but it is well along in the process, it’s just a matter of my editor’s schedule.
  • I’m working on a rough outline for the entire series which is why it is behind the books of The Cursed Mage Case Files. I have some good ideas for several books including book 2. Work on these next books will begin later in the year.

Lost Treasure of the Airship Pirates:

  • All Things Forgotten – this book is drafted and has been reviewed by my editor. Since it is a LitRPG-ish series, the book requires some further development, but I hope to complete revision to hand it back to my editor late in the year. My expectation is to have the series outlined this year and this first book ready for publication early in 2022.

The Broken Shield Chronicles:

  • Tentative Title – The Lost Princess – This book has an almost completed rough draft which will require some revision. It’s also a LitRPG-ish series that will have more books. I intend to outline the series later this year and prep the release during 2022, but no date is set just yet.

Anthologies:

  • I might squeeze another anthology in addition to Curses Dark and Foul into the mix this year depending on my available time. I’ll announce anything development with these as the year progresses.

That’s all I have in development or scheduled for this year and 2022. It’s a good thing I’ve got so many rough drafts ready and I can dictate others as the year moves along. Much of my schedule beyond those already written is fluid and based on demand/popularity. I’ll be working on early reviews more with the next releases than I have in the past so let me know if you are interested in an ARC when the time comes for The Unseen Hand.

That’s a lot to share at the moment, but I have not been active here on the site for a while so I felt it was important to let everyone know what’s coming up. I’ve been under the weather a lot for several months so I’m just now getting back in the swing of things. My blogging schedule is not set at this point but I hope to keep a regular schedule to 1-3 weeks since I’m busy with a number of book projects. The blog may be more active than that if I have time but I’m not sure I will unless it’s close to a book release.

Thanks for stopping by today. Please share this post in some way and thanks for the support.

Questions, Questions

Hi everyone! First, let me get a few housekeeping items out of the way. Curses Dark and Foul was soft-released on 8/6. I’m scheduling a hard release (meaning I start marketing the book more) on 8/24. Meanwhile, I’ve moved on with several other projects I’ve mentioned previously. However, my main novel of the year the Cursed Mage Case File series (formerly Reformed Mage series) with a working title of The Feral Name which continues to be my most important project.

The manuscript is with my editor and we’ve been conversing about various aspects about the book. Also, the manuscript is being read by a few beta readers. This means the book is in ongoing revision. While I expect to receive full reports about the book in several weeks, there are some ongoing minor phases of the revision which continue for me. The editor and the beta readers do ask some questions.

You might think that questions about the book manuscript are a bad thing. After all, questions mean that the editor or the beta readers are confused in some way. Actually, it’s a good thing for revision. It’s important to get the questions because these help resolve all the problems with the book. Questions and observations tell me as an author where I need to focus on quality and clarity. This leads to the end product – the published book.

While revision questions are trickling to me, there are also more concerns about the completing the book. I’ve made contact with my cover artist and he’s waiting for my written concepts for the artwork. I have some good ideas but the problem is that I don’t like the working title of the book. It really doesn’t grab me so I’m playing around with a variety of titles until I settle on one that hits the correct chord for the type of fantasy book this will be. I like the series title, it’s just the first book that bothers me. I see a lot of titles on Amazon that are poorly chosen. I feel it’s important to get this part correct.

Next, I’ll consider the blurb. Writing a book description is something I’ve studied and worked at for a while so I’m confident I can write it. Yes, I’m a writer but this kind of writing requires a specific skill at communicating the essence of the book well but with brevity. If not done well, readers are not interested and my job is to interest readers. It answers that question we writers get all the time, “What’s it about?” Everyone who finds out you have a book coming out wants to know about it. Answering the question well is half the task of a good blurb.

These are all questions which need answering so I’m taking time to work through them. Answering the title question is not always easy. Neither is the blurb an easy answer. Likewise, finding all the questions a reader might stumble over if I don’t revise the manuscript well is a process. I have several of these reader questions in my mind regarding revision, many of which I can answer and change in short order.

Revision and moving toward publication is fraught with questions. With The Bow of Hart Saga, much of the title and blurb questions were with me for many years, but with a new series there are a set of ideas that I must complete for publication. Now is a good time to begin addressing these aspects of publication to remain on schedule.

Of course, I have several other projects underway through which I plan to progress this month. I just have to keep in mind that the main revision will also need my attention at times. Hopefully, I’ll come up with a title I like, get the cover art completed and write a blurb within a few weeks so the book begins to come together and I can share more specifics. The pace quickens as the pieces come together into a finished book.

Mixed into all this is a prequel, The Changeling Incident. The title and cover are in place. Writing a blurb and completing the manuscript revision are also in progress. Being a shorter book, this will move along faster than the novel, especially since it is scheduled for release sooner. It’s the novel in a micro-state, just further along in the publication process.

Authors are always part of these publication processes but it may not be so evident to readers. As a self-published author, I’m in complete control and it’s my responsibility to produce all the parts that make up the published book. I hope this gives readers a taste of where the book is in it’s current process.

Thanks for stopping by today and reading where my next novel is on the long road to publication. Got questions? Leave them in the comments and I’ll respond as soon as I can.

 

Fantasy Friday! Can Your Character Survive A Flaw?

These days, all characters have flaws be it physical, mental or emotional. So if you give your main character a flaw that is integral to your story can your character survive said flaw?

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George R. R. Martin gives us a great example in Tyrion from A Song of Fire and Ice series (better known as HBO’s Game of Thrones). He’s a dwarf with physical limitations to his legs. Not only this but he’s viewed negatively by most everyone around him because of his flaws. He even gains a few more during the course of the series through battle as well as toting a load of emotional baggage. As effective as this characterization is, could he actually survive this flaw as long as he has in real life?

FightingI’m glad you asked. There’s a more recent archaeological discovery that has subsequently brought just such a real-life case to light. Richard III of England’s grave was discovered under a parking lot 2011. For those who are unfamiliar with Richard, he died in the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485 which pretty much ended the Wars of the Roses. One way he was identified was by a specific physical handicap – severe scoliosis or curvature of the spine. By severe I mean a 30% curvature – very noticeable. The unusual thing is that all accounts of the battle indicate that Richard fought with great skill and nearly won the battle. He unhorsed a jousting champion, killed Henry Tudor’s standard-bearer and almost killed Henry.

A recent episode of Secrets of the Dead actually examined whether Richard III could actually have functioned as a knight on the battlefield. They found a volunteer with very similar scoliosis and began to determine what his physical capabilities were. They realized that Richard would have needed specially designed armor and that the medieval saddle would have benefited him with greater support. In the show, they were able to outfit their volunteer and give him some basic training as a re-enactor. They were even able to show that Richard would have been able to ride in the charge and effectively use weaponry.

knights fightingHowever, physical limitations were also discovered. The re-enactor had less stamina due to the scoliosis affecting his ability to breathe well during exertion. In spite of Richard’s skills and training he may well have been just as limited.

Richard lost the battle for a number of reasons one of which was Lord Stanley’s failure to advance behind the initial charge. But Richard favored fast charges and ending battles quickly. If you lacked stamina for long physical exertions you would likely choose the same strategy. However, in this instance the charge actually took much longer. I could see Richard almost making it to victory only to be thwarted by his own malady as much as other circumstances. This one time, Richard likely misjudged the circumstances due to “the fog of war”. Had he known or thought it through better he might have chosen a different strategy. But maybe all outcomes would have been the same if Lord Stanley was indeed a traitor.

So as a writer of fantasy, I’m looking harder at my future characters and the flaws I can give them just to twist my plots tighter. Can my character’s survive their flaws? Will they be trapped into exposing their difficulties to enemies through lack of choices – political and otherwise? It’s certainly a way to add more spice to conflict in a story.

Book Cover Green Top & Bottom Cover - CopyPlease share your thoughts and ideas in the comments section. I’d also love to connect with you over social media so check my Contact page for that information. See the News page for announcements and remember to sign-up to receive news and posts by email. I’ve added a new sign-up tab on my FaceBook page to simplify the process. New followers can download The Black Bag via free coupon today! Also, the cover of my book, The Bow of Destiny, was revealed recently so take a look.

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