Manny

Where I’ve Been & What’s Coming Up – I Hope…

It’s been a while since posting here on the blog. I’ve been struggling with health issues all year, so the summer was very busy in that regard. I’m still on a long, slow mend, but making a little progress. I’m heading back to some rehab, but it’s not as bad as last March.But rather than dwell on health, I prefer to share some of what’s going on with writing plans. The schedule is now jumbled, so I’m updating that on the news page. Also, I’ll get to a major shift in priorities in an upcoming post. Suffice it to say I’m going back to my writing roots. I’ll get into why and what it means later.

But rather than dwell on health, I prefer to share some of what’s going on with writing plans. The schedule is now jumbled, so I’m updating that on the news page. Also, I’ll get to a major shift in priorities in an upcoming post. Suffice it to say I’m going back to my writing roots. I’ll get into why and what it means later.

My immediate plans are to complete work on The Unseen Hand, Volume 2 of The Cursed Mage Case Files. My hope is to release it by Thanksgiving though it looks like that schedule may slide some.

The good news with the upcoming book is the artwork. I’ve ordered the cover from my artist and hope it will arrive within the week.

The delays with this book have been many and mostly physical. Energy and focus have been a big problem all year. This improved to the point where I could spend more time on it. However, all the backlog of the year of working in fits and spurts left me far behind on other needful tasks, some of which will be announced here in the coming days.

I made a lot of progress on all fronts out of my stagnation. Then my health dropped another major distraction on me. I developed a sudden eye infection. I was unable to keep my eyes open and had to make an emergency visit to the local eye hospital on a weekend. Then there were frequent drops, treatment, and more appointments.

This emergency kept me from working on the book for over a week. Oddly, or maybe not so odd in the end, I had an eye problem when I published The Bow of Destiny in late 2015. It turns out these were related. I was diagnosed with rosacea affecting my eyes. The ophthalmologist told me it’s often diagnosed from eye issues.

Now, I’m getting back in the swing more but still working around post Covid limitations. I’m getting better at working around them, but still have to do “working breaks”. But I’m making steady progress. This post is a good sign of that fact. I’m managing what feels like a new normal. As a result, revision of The Unseen Hand crawls forward.

I’ve even been able to make a few plans about other books and begin some much needed changes to the site as well as update books. Announcements are coming about multiple changes and developments and I think everyone will like them all.

My sincere hope is to launch more entertaining books for readers. If only I don’t have any more setbacks with health.

All that being expressed, I’m sorry I haven’t posted more here. I truly have been consumed with health concerns and just haven’t had the energy and focus to spend time on Archer’s Aim, let alone a new book. Things are progressing, just not as quickly as I’d like. Stay tuned, I’ll get to the next launch and more books beyond in due time. More to come about other holdups in the near future. In the meantime, please see the News page for some updates as I get back in the proverbial saddle, even if it’s with limitations.

Also as a closing note, I am catching up on lost time this week with several posts. The schedule will settle down next week.

ODR Character Spotlight: A Wish and a Prayer

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Wishton Ackford is the narrator of The Order of the Dark Rose. His perspective regarding his adventures and investigations with his business partner, Manny, are important to the book. Let’s take a look at his character.

Wish is an unemployed copywriter, not a fighter, and certainly not a mage. In his world, not only is magic real, it is commonplace and used as technology. However he is often dismayed or unsettled by events involving magic. Such encounters as these are the unusual for him in his experiences because magic is more than technology and there are those willing to use it for nefarious purposes.

As a neophyte sidekick, Wish is not really that experienced with magic, nor does he have any practical knowledge. His understanding of magic is mainly informed by common technology. As such, he’s grown up with magic but really doesn’t know that much about it. Correlating back to reality, one may drive a car but know little of it’s technology. The same is true of electricity or computers. Deep knowledge isn’t required to make use of a car, electricity or computers and such is the case with Wish and magical technology.

Wish is very uncomfortable with spells and such being used around him because he doesn’t know what will happen. For this reason, he is often checking for his own magical weapon which doesn’t require any magical knowledge to use: a fleer gun.

This weapon, which operates off of a magical cell like most such technology in the book, provides Wish a fighting chance against powerful magic users. It is an equalizer for him, but only in a limited sense. An attacker or someone who intends harm can easily use other forms of magic on him such as a hex, dangerous elemental spells, and even charms. Because of this possibility, Wish often experiences a lot of anxiety in situations that could – or do – escalate into some sort of confrontation.

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Wish isn’t religious, but Manny is. However, the frequently awkward and dangerous situations in which Wish finds himself leaves him considering a prayer to get himself through difficulties.

Manny is well-educated about the use of magic. Wish can easily be caught off-balance by all kinds of spells and various forms of magic. A wand pointed at someone is like pointing a gun for you and I, except anything can happen.

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Investigations with Manny are not easy since Wish finds his business partner rather opaque as a tangential thinker. Their cases are even more fraught with uncertainty since they are usually after someone who has broken the law or is willing to do so. Fighting is not Wish’s forte so he’s often tense, anticipating negative events because he never knows what’s going to happen.

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Wish is kind of a Dr. Watson-like character, except he isn’t a veteran and he’s only trained as a writer, not a doctor. He learns some skills pertaining to the nature of magical investigations as the book progresses, but he’s still often off-balance while working from his wits and the slim experience he gains over the course of the book. His anxiety remains, and even builds, compounded by the growing understanding that his partner may well be the target of an unknown mastermind-nemesis.

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Wish increasingly finds himself caught up in events well beyond his abilities. His main resources are Manny and his experience as well as his Fleer gun. It all makes for a character observing events from a skewed perspective, caught between the fear of being penniless or dead, maybe worse if he ends up cursed like Manny.

I hope that lends a bit of insight into the narrator of The Order of the Dark Rose. You can find out more about the book on its page or click to any of the listed retail sites during this post.

Look for more posts like this one in the near future as I progress with the next volume in The Cursed Mage Case Files, The Unseen Hand.

Thanks for visiting today and reading about the book. Please leave your thoughts and questions in the comments and I will get back to you as soon as possible. Also, please share this post or re-blog it with your friends. If you have a copy of The Order of the Dark Rose, please leave a rating or review with your favorite retailer as well as such sites as BookBub and Goodreads (you can find links to the books by clicking to the site page linked or my logo image just below here).

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