Writing Groups

The Bow of Hart Saga Sequel – Ideas From Readers

A recent email arrived in my mailbox from a reader who let me know not only had she re-read The Bow of Hart Saga, but she had a list of details she wanted to see in the sequel. First of all, authors love hearing that people are re-reading their books because there’s just no higher compliment. Next, a list of details to address in the sequel? WOW! That’s even better to hear from a reader because I know how much and what details of the book interest readers and what they want to know about in upcoming editions.

I’ve discussed getting a sequel ready at some point and had hoped to have already started this year. However, my health held me back for much of the first half of the year and other projects were delayed as a result. I’m working to get those projects edited and published as soon as I can, hopefully one new book in a new series this year. Regardless, the publishing calendar will be full next year if all goes well because I’ve got a long back-log of content that will soon be ready.

I’ve been deliberating about what book to draft next and thought I might work on the next one in my new Reformed Mage series – now it’s the fourth book since I wrote so much content in the original draft that I’ve split that one into three books already. Lots of work to do there, so what’s now book four can wait some. If I had it plotted, I’d be writing it now.

However, this news makes me take a step back and seriously consider plotting the sequel to The Bow of Hart Saga. I’ve already written down some ideas for the book and it may well require that I complete development of a parallel series to setup the sequel. This parallel series would contain a lot of information the leads into the sequel in terms of my planning. But, now I stop and listen to the readers and their interests – that’s where all of you come in. Below is a list of ideas already expressed to me and I love them all as aspects around which to write the sequel, but I’d love to hear from more people and their reactions to these ideas as well as share their own. Have a look at the list and then leave your comments about what you want to see answered in the sequel as well as what you loved best about The Bow of Hart Saga. If you are up for it, please leave a comment requesting access to the private fan group I’m developing on Goodreads where we can all share and discuss more about the series, sequels and other projects – no big commitment required.

Current list:

  • Write a short on Limbreth’s journey home
  • She (Limbreth) could have little adventures on the way home to reconcile with her father.
  • We could get to know the rest of Limbreth’s family.
  • Maybe toss in some letters from Athson
  • Have Makwi visit to sign an accord and sing her verse
  • Or Limbreth can go to the partially rebuilt Chokkra.

Just a quick comment; I’m up for writing that short but many of these ideas are actually good for including in a full novel too and would probably need more than a short book to actually cover. But I’m all about including these ideas in a possible upcoming sequel series of 2-3 books.

Here are some of my ideas when considering moving to a sequel:

  1. How will the previous outcome change Athson’s outlook? What will he do with his new role and all the revelations?
  2. How will Limbreth’s discovery of possible trouble in her home country and her relationship affect her decisions? Will she lose patience and move on from Athson?
  3. How will the wider political climate change? Will there be unforeseen ramifications?

I think those are good starters. For any readers interested, I’m willing to discuss these more in depth on my Goodreads group and share what rough drafts I write.for feedback. If you’ve read the existing series, please share if with your friends who love fantasy. Share it on social media too. Then come join the conversation by requesting access to my Goodreads group. I always welcome interaction with readers so come along to watch the development of the sequel and other books too.

The Bow of Destiny Commentary Pt. 2: The “Fit”

Introduction

I thought it would be interesting to share some commentary about the beginning of The Bow of Destiny now that the book has been out for a while, sold well and the next book should be released in just a few months. The Bow of Destiny has a curious beginning for many people that’s at once perplexing, confusing and intriguing. This effect is done on purpose and I’ll share a bit about it now.

The Bow of Destiny is written using the technique of deep point-of-view where readers hopefully become deeply engaged with the perceptions of the point-of-view character. There are a few other aspects mixed into this, one being that there are little, to no, dialogue tags in the book – all the dialogue is contextual. Secondly, with the deep point-of-view, internalization is signaled – or tagged – with physical actions by the character. As such, the internal thoughts, mood and emotions of the character are not italicized since these are deep enough into the chracter-reader engagement to not be set apart in such a way. Lastly, when italics are used it is for a specific, ongoing experience for the POV character. In such cases, hallucinations, dreams, memories, visions and other such experiences of the character are italicized as a special indicator that something different is happening for the character. I also used a present tense instead of past tense to cue the reader that this is a present experience for the character. It’s important to note that the tense only has changed and not the character POV.

The Fit

Athson has been afflicted with what he terms “fits” since he was orphaned. Something in his surrounding environment can set off these episodes where he re-lives his past – sometimes overlaid with his present. It’s actually a PTSD-like reaction to the violence of his past and can leave him rather confused

On top of this, Athson also sees other things like Spark, an imaginary mountain hound that’s been at his side since the incidents described in the first chapter. Athson takes an elven concoction called Soul’s Ease to prevent him from having “fits” or seeing Spark.

The opening scene gets confusing for Athson because he’s forgotten his Soul’s Ease. The instances of italics in this case are when Athson sees his traumatic past – in present tense. It emphasizes that something different is ongoing within Athson’s awareness. If you – as the reader – are confused, then it’s all good because Athson is confused and you are really deeply into his experiences. However, it’s important to remember that the character point-of-view does not change – only the tense has changed to emphasize Athson’s (in this case) experience has changed.

Athson knows that these “fits” give him a hard time differentiating what he sees for days so he assumes things like Spark are not real. However, these seem very real to him and he often gets caught up in them anyway – such as interacting with Spark.

Conclusion

So this is another layer to Athson’s point-of-view in the opening scene. As you can see, there are a lot of different aspects to this scene that might get overlooked. However, if you read it again you’ll see the clues along the way. By the way, there are a number of other subtleties throughout the book that you might find interesting on re-reading.

Next week, I’ll dig a little deeper into this opening scene and attempt to offer a bit more about Athson’s state of mind. I found this scene difficult, tricky and daring all at once so there are a lot of layers to what’s going in with Athson that set the stage for the whole story. Thanks for reading today. Please leave comments below and check back next week for another post about this topic.

To find out more about The Bow of Destiny, click over to one of these online retailers:

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IMG_4154-EditAbout the Author

P. H. Solomon lives in the greater Birmingham, AL area where he strongly dislikes yard work and sanding the deck rail. However, he performs these duties to maintain a nice home for his loved ones as well as the family’s German Shepherds. In his spare time, P. H. rides herd as a Computer Whisperer on large computers called servers (harmonica not required). Additionally, he enjoys reading, running, most sports and fantasy football. Having a degree in Anthropology, he also has a wide array of more “serious” interests in addition to working regularly to hone his writing. The Bow of Destiny is his first novel-length title with more soon to come.

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Story Empire Roadshow Featuring Joan Hall

Thanks for visiting today! Join me in welcoming Joan Hall, one of my fellow contributing authors from Story Empire. Also, welcome to a lot of new visitors today from various other blogs and groups including those from Story Empire and Joan’s followers. Take it away Joan!

Welcome to Driscoll Lake

Good morning everyone! This is the first day for the Story Empire Roadshow and I’m excited to be a part of it. I want to thank Paul for hosting me today on this first stop of the tour.

The title of the book I’m featuring this week is Unseen Motives, a mystery/suspense novel. Originally planned as a stand-alone book set in the fictitious town of Driscoll Lake, Texas, I soon discovered the town has many hidden secrets—more than I can tell you in one book.

Therefore, I decided to write two more books set in Driscoll Lake. I plan to release Unknown Reasons sometime in late summer and Unclear Purposes in early 2018. Today, however, I’d like to give you a brief tour around town.

Driscoll Lake is a small place a hundred miles or so east of Dallas. I loosely based the town on the place where I grew up (and still live).  Once a small farming community, Driscoll Lake started to grow rapidly in the mid-1990s. The farms faded away as new housing developments sprang up in and around the town. Driscoll Lake soon became home to mostly white-collar workers who commuted to the larger (also fictitious) town of Brewster.

Stephanie Harris is the main character in Unseen Motives and is a best-selling author. She lived with her parents in Driscoll Lake until she was fourteen-years-old. After her father’s death by suicide, and subsequent accusations of murder and embezzlement against him, Stephanie moved away with her mother.

Twenty years later, she returned home for the funeral of her great-aunt and soon learns that not everything about her father’s death is what it seems. Although Stephanie was surprised to see how much the town had grown, many sites and traditions are familiar to her.

The town’s first water tower still stands, but with a fresh coat of paint. Stephanie remembered when one of her old classmates, Brian Nichols, climbed the tower and spray painted graffiti on the top.

Cameron Manufacturing was once the town’s main source of employment. Forced to close after the scandal involving Stephanie’s father, the abandoned buildings remain. Soon after her arrival in Driscoll Lake, Stephanie takes a nostalgic drive around the town, but avoids driving by the factory because her father died there.

Friday night football and marching bands are big in the state of Texas and Driscoll Lake is no exception. Stephanie’s one and only time to march with the high school band came on the Friday night her father died. It was hard to think about the good moments before she learned of his death, but she could still picture the high-school quarterback, Matt Bradford, and remembered her schoolgirl crush on him. He’s now the police chief of Driscoll Lake.

I hope you enjoyed this short tour of Driscoll Lake. Unseen Motives is on sale this week for .99. Click here for the purchase link. On tomorrow’s tour stop, I’ll reveal a little more about the town and its secrets.

At the end of the week, I’ll select two random winners for $10.00 Amazon gift cards. To enter, leave a comment below. I’d like to know your impression of Driscoll Lake and small town life in general.

Connect with Joan:

Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Amazon  |  GoodreadsGoogle+  | Pinterest

That was quite a tour! Be sure to check out Unseen Motives and Joan’s website as well as the rest of the stops on the Story Empire Roadshow where you can find our tour schedule for today and all week. Also, please make sure to leave comments below so you can be in the running for Joan’s prize at the end of the week! Thanks for visiting today and have a fun week!