Last week, I shared what 5 things I added to The Bow of Hart Saga over the time I was writing the series. This week, I’m sharing what I removed from the series. This one is a bit tougher since I had to think through so many years development.
1. First on the list is a major sub-plot. Once I really re-booted my work on the The Bow of Destiny and the series, I added a major sub-plot where events unfolded in a totally different part of Denaria with different characters. It was pretty good writing but very unnecessary as pointed out by my editor. So, I removed the sub-plot but held onto it for later publication as a single book or a novella series. Hopefully, I can begin sharing some of that in the coming months as the early portions of this could easily be developed into the first two books of a shorter series.
2. Next, I dropped additional books. When I first planned the series many years ago, I wanted to write between seven and nine books. I trimmed that notion to five books and then to three. I think three books were enough to cover what was needed (reference to the Withlings intended).
3. The meaning of the Bow of Hart was next to be changed. At first, I intended to write it much differently (no spoiler here) but the more work I put into the current version, the more I knew it had to be twisted. That meant dropping my original intentions and I think that worked out much better. For those who haven’t read it, you need to and you’ll understand.
4. Along with the shift away from more books, the plans I had for a major war in the lands of Shildra and Grendon shifted north which made sense. Fewer books meant less time to move into other lands so I kept the series arc as simple as possible – anything else was pushing too far. I did not get to show events in other places like Shildra, Grendon, Hart, Rok and several others. Perhaps I can write another series about those lands (and, no, the previously mentioned content is not about these lands).
5. Lastly, I dropped a very convoluted beginning that spent far too much time with Athson being alone and making long trips to and from Auguron City. That left him involved with no one so there was less dialogue. Also, it was just boring so I settled on pushing the reader directly into Athson’s confusing reality and a single, straight-forward journey to the city with Gweld while moving the ranger station further away and adding a few stops along the way for better context and plot development.
So those are a few details that were cut, and generously so. I think it made the overall series better, more concise. As a bonus, I can also share that I split the initial first book since it would have been far too long, shifted the title to the second book and developed The Bow of Destiny title. That took some doing but it worked. Next week, I’ll share more details I added, especially in The Bow of Destiny that made the book better in my opinion.
The following post is a fictitious news report based on events from An Arrow Against the Wind, Book Two of The Bow of Hart Saga:
The Ezhandun Resistance Tribune
“Resistance News Dwarves Can Trust”
Date-line: Somewhere in the Central Drelkhaz Mountains By Cracked-Shield (true name withheld for security)
A rare opportunity has presented itself for an interview from an important personage and news from our scattered people from west over the mountains. Just a few days ago, none other than our former leader, Tordug of Chokkra, arrived with several other people of import in his company. They are on a quest which I’ll let him describe as well as deliver his message to us. This writer is aware that this piece may be controversial for many of our people still living and fighting hard against Rok but the message may prove to be of help to many, even those who harbor low opinions of our former leader.
Cracked-Shield: Word of you has been mere rumor for so many years. Can you tell us where you have been?
Tordug: I was saved by Makwi while fighting in the upper-southern halls where we were cut-off whe Cokkra fell. We escaped out a secret entrance but were still pursued by trolls so we fled west into the wilderness as best we could. After a time, we split up for more than a year but we found each other through scattered people living as refugees in Auguron. We agreed to do our part hunting trolls in the Heaths though none would rally to our cause.
Cracked-Shield: So, you’ve been fighting like shadows without the aid of any of our brethren warriors. Some would mention honor – even with Makwi at your side – as cause enough not to support your efforts. Others would commend you for continuing the fight virtually alone. What brought you over the mountains at this time?
Tordug: We joined a quest at the request of a friend but we didn’t come over the mountains. We entered Chokkra through the Troll Neath on our quest. We have seen, first-hand, the cursed desecration and destruction of our home.
Cracked-Shield: Through Chokkra, eh? Perhaps you were on an assassin’s quest for a certain wizard?
Tordug: If only that were true. But our friend is a Withling seeking a relic to fight against not only Corgren but Magdronu as well. As you have heard the tale already, some of our party barely escaped a trap, including Makwi.
Cracked-Shield: Yes, it is rumored a Withling accompanied you here among our resistance fighters as well as Makwi. You seem to be in honor raising company, even bringing us an actual Ax-maid. What can you tell us of this quest and this Ax-maid?
Tordug: Yes, an Ax-maid is with us. She earned the title saving an Auguron ranger from trolls. She even displayed the death-grip in the incident and several times since, including on her journey here with me.
Cracked-Shield: Death-grip you say? You have brought us some truly brave and honorable visitors. One can only hope that you bear news of hope?
Tordug: I dare hope that our quest will make some difference against the trolls and Rok as well as the dragon and his wizards. But we have yet to find the relic.
Cracked-Shield: Were you aware of the plight of our people here? How they are used for blood for the dragon?
Tordug: I had heard of these things. Several in our party, including Makwi, were rescued from such a fate. I am ill-pleased with the extent of this heinous problem. I will take council with Duliwe and Withling Hastra about these matters as time allows. But as you know, I rule no longer so my word is not law. Only the honor of my companions brings me gracious aid at this time. But it is necessary that we recover this relic for the Withling so that Magdronu may be countered. My great desire is that the power of Rok and the trolls will be broken over Chokkra by recovering this weapon.
Cracked-Shield: So, you offer your people hope after all these years of silence?
Tordug: I do indeed offer some hope though I do not know how it shall be accomplished at this time. I understand that many may given up on any possibility of restoration of Chokkra. Without this quest, Magdronu’s evil will only fester further throughout Denaria.
Cracked-Shield: Can you share more about this quest?
Tordug: I can only say that it is a Withling-blessed weapon passed through a Hartian family over many generations. It is certain that Magdronu knows of our movements and intentions as does Corgren and his brother, Paugren. But the less said the better, I think.
Cracked-Shield: You have grown wiser in the years of your solitude while fighting trolls. It is said your fighting honor rose among us while you traveled here. What of this tale?
Tordug: Aye, our enemy has raised some creature of magic named the Bane. None can slay this creature without the help of a blessed weapon or the presence of a Withling. Hastra was not with us so I and the Ax-maid fought it when it attacked during a fight with a Rokan squad. I pushed it over the side of the mountain but it haunts us still.
Cracked Shield: A deed, well done then. Perhaps you will do more than offer hope in a blessed weapon to defeat our enemy and regain us our home free of the threat of our enemies.
Tordug: Makwi, our companions and I will do all we can to end the power of Magdronu and his minions. It will be done if I must breathe my last do accomplish it.
Ending note: Rokans have since threatened Duliwe with a force of their spearmen. Tordug, Makwi, Hastra the Withling and the Ax-Maid have left with other their companions on their search for the blessed weapon. We can only wish them well for our own sakes though many might harbor little hope of deliverance from such a desperate quest. This dwarf for one, hopes that Tordug’s determination will win him back his lost honor and, somehow, our lost home.
Also of note, Duliwe has reportedly sent a special force of artisans and fighters to block the high-road to the place of our old celebrations now used for the cursed sacrifices of our people. It is not an option we wish at this time, but certainly one which must be carried out if possible. We’ve played for time and survival long enough, perhaps it’s time we cut-off one avenue of Magdronu’s magic supply using our people’s blood.
This is Cracked-Shield, bidding all my readers hope in these dark times.
Look for more of these fun reports about the series. If you are interested in The Bow of Destiny, An Arrow Against the Wind or the newly released, final edition, The White Arrow, please click the appropriate link for the book-page. Following is the direct links to find An Arrow Against the Wind at Amazon where you can also download it for free via Kindle Unlimited:
Happy Monday, everyone. With my recent return to more active work, specific updates to my writing schedule are in order. Here’s what’s next for The Bow of Hart Saga & The Cursed Mage Case Files.
The Cursed Mage Case Files
The Unseen Hand is still moving slowly. Artwork has not yet arrived. I’m digging out of the pile of unfinished work that needs my attention, like the site and blog posts. What is outstanding is a lot of work to push into a short amount of time. I remain committed to publication of the book this year. But a launch early this month is very unlikely. I’ll report more about this progress later this week.
Publication Schedule & The Bow of Hart Saga Sequels
My publication schedule has already been announced covering the next year. Here’s a change in that schedule.
For quite a while now I’ve been receiving requests through reviews, email and a few comments on the site requesting more of The Bow of Hart Saga. To confirm my intentions, yes, there will be sequel books to this series. The original series is already completed and Podium Audio published all three of the books under contract. For this reason, the planned sequel must be published separately.
In order to accommodate the increasing requests for more of Athson and Limbreth, I now have to change my schedule . I already have several books planned for publication this year and next. Due to my health issues, I have not begun any work on new books covering the world of Denaria. I do have material partially drafted for a parallel series that sets up what’s to come regarding Athson and Limbreth.
The plan is to publish this parallel series since it sets up what is to come in the sequel for the main characters. Likewise, I’ve already begun an outline of the sequel series and intend beginning a rough draft as soon as possible.
However I do have much of the upcoming year covered with work on The Cursed Mage Case Files and the first book of the Black Glove series. The updated schedule includes publication of Denaria-related books during the last half of next year at the earliest (unless something changes). That’s as fast as I can publish anything for that series since it will require editing and work for cover art.
I do encourage anyone interested in my writing to delve into The Cursed Mage Case Files in the meantime as that series will continue to grow and is quite a lot of fun. I will update more of my writing schedule regarding The Bow of Hart as I begin work on it during the next few months, so stay tuned here for news or join my email list and text list to receive additional information as it develops.
Thanks to everyone interested in more from Athson and Limbreth. The interest really lets me know that I wrote something many people like and want more of. If you are a fan of that series, one thing you can do for it is to share it with as many people as you can over social media or anywhere else you can think of as well as talk it up. I will be sharing printable bookmarks for that series as soon as I can and you are welcome to print them and share them with friends. I do have an announcements coming soon about additional ways to share with other people.
That’s all for today. Thanks for stopping by to read the update. Please leave your thoughts in the comments section and I’ll reply as soon as possible. Here are some updated links (there are some official announcements to come soon about one of these).