Mutterings and utterings of a budding novelist

Tapestry Of Fates

My own Battle Angel

angel fight

Angel vs Sin and Punishment

With Alita: Battle Angel coming out next month, and getting very excited about it, I thought I’d share my own homage to the character Alita (or Gally as she’s also knows). After seeing the original anime when I was 17 I was an instant fan.
Then whilst at uni, we were to develop a plasticine model with an armature skeleton. But we had to pull the character from two extremely different subjects. It wasn’t hard for me to land on a robot angel.

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Sketch for my armature at uni – around 2000

So of course Angel was born. And not long after I decided to add her to my stories. With my fantasy books – ‘Phoenix’ she slot into the story easily. One of the antogonists – Friegh Majenti decided to build an assasination droid and, preying the Phoenix Sorcerer – Katrina Zoana’s willingness to accept any person into her clan whatever their race or background, he built Angel to prey on her psychologically. Basing her on his own daughter Angelia as well as a race of ill-fated silicon humans from the planet Vyse, he designed Angel to gain Katrina’s trust in order to get close enough to assassinate through an assortment of weaponary hidden on her (including a Guyver-esque Mega Smasher type attack). But during programming, Freigh gave the droid benevolent emotions. Inevitably Angel refused to carry out the orders given to her, forcing Freigh to layer a basic AI over the top and send her out on her mission, using brute force rather than cloak and dagger tactics.

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Very old sketch – around 2001

After being defeated by the Phoenix Sorcerer, her temporary AI broke and she returned to the kind, sweet droid. Sensing her true nature, Katrina accepted the droid and she became part of the fight against Majenti. Over time she would learn many skills into multiple martial art forms, clairvoyance, and even build her own droid Seraphim.

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Another old sketch around 2002

Angel appears in everything I’ve ever written. and if I can’t put her in as a robot, she appears as a pink or dark red-haired girl.
She has also led me to create other versions of her (or other ‘Sisters of Vyse’) who were built to kill her.

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All the Sisters of Vyse

Looking back from the initial image of her, it’s crazy to see how far that sketch developed.

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Wings open – Boom! But renders her depleted of energy.

Chapter 5 Final Small

Angel and Seraphim

 


One more sister of Vyse – Aurora

Now I’m finally dusting down Tapestry of Fates to be rereleased, once again I’m daydreaming of plots and plotholes. One hole in particular demanded a final sister of Vyse to be a sworn enemy of Vixen.
So here we have Aurora. 🙂 I must admit, I partly just wanted to draw another droid 😀Auora Final


The Muse of True Love

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And now for something quite off track that I’m used to writing. 😀

Unbeknownst to most people I know, the concept and notion of love is something that dominates quite a lot of my life, and even drives me to work, write, and paint. Even though I rarely talk about it.
Fuelled by an unhealthy obsession of 80’s movies, old Disney films and power ballads, I think I have beliefs about love that many would consider unrealistic.

I’ve used the idea of a perfect romance as a kind of muse in all my workings. And even though it’s not quite obvious when reading my writings (especially with some of the gorier work!), a simple scratch of the surface will show it’s subtle undertones of love.
In my screenplay of Last Battle, the protagonist’s only drive was to return to his wife and child, willing to go head first against the armies of Hell in the name of love. And likewise in the same tale, I penned about a couple – one controlled by Heaven, one unwillingly controlled by Hell desperately fighting it out amid the fires of the underworld, trying to understand what has become of them. Another character fights in the belief that his long lost love can still see him, and uses this notion to give him courage.
With Tapestry of Fates I wanted to build up the story and characters own paths within the wars in the first book, before helping them to understand there’s more to life than just fighting in the second book, which of course leads to some romantic interventions, in turn causing the subsequent battles against E-Clipse to become more desperate and heartfelt.
This is route I’m planning with Fallen Tears also, as the twins near the source of the vampiric reign, I want to introduce a kind of romantic spanner in the works without altering the book as a whole.

So why is it that a bloke writing so much about love has remained single for quite a few years now (insert wise crack here about not being able to get a girlfriend)? I’ve been on dates after all, and that’s something I do enjoy greatly, but that could be because I love getting to know new people.
It’s no secret that I’m quite an emotional fella. Not in the crying sense, but as in deeply feeling everything around me. I hate nothing more than seeing people upset and would move mountains to make people happy. Sometimes being overly emphatic can be seen as a weakness, as it’s a trait easily exploited.
I guess I can only say that I don’t yearn for just a simple coupling, sleeping around, or jumping in and settling down with the first person that shows interest. Like my stories, I want meaning to develop before anything else.
Rather I feel I have an eye open for that perfect romance I like to write about; a chivalrous, all-consuming, soul-burning love that many believe doesn’t exist.
And does that kind of love exist? I feel I’ve seen enough evidence in this world to believe so.
Do I believe it’ll come to me? Maybe. Maybe not.
Does it make a fussy bastard? Some might even say I’ve not right to be fussy! 😀 But it’s something I won’t try to force, not sell my soul to achieve.
Whilst I’ve seen how true love can create Heaven for some, I’ve also seen it create misery in others. There’s nothing worse than regret, and living beside someone for mere convenience without any affection is one of the biggest in life.

Perhaps I even put off the idea of becoming fully involved with someone as the muse of love is such a powerful working drive for me. At times in the past I’d even use the thought of a some particular girl in order to push forward my work. But now I think it’s more of the notion itself that helps spurn my creativity.
It’s a surprise to read that Napoleon Hill wrote a similar idea in his book Think and Grow Rich – a chapter called “The Mystery of Sex Transmutation” that was removed in the early editions, with it being seen as too risque for the audiences of the 1930’s. Basically it describes that many of the successful businessmen at the time turned their desires of sex into a powerful drive that spurned them to work hard.

So whilst I’ve rambled on over one of the most boring blog utterings I’ve ever posted, whilst simultaneously giving my mother a heart attack about the possible lack of grandchildren, I wonder how I’ll end this in a suitable way.

One of the greatest things I’ve ever seen in fiction is J.K.Rowling’s Severus Snape. Whilst we all spent many books and movies believing Snape was a cold-hearted, wicked man with a terrible agenda, the saddest part came when we learned the truth about his love for Harry’s mother, gently hinted at in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

“Dumbledore watched her fly away, and as her silvery glow faded he turned back to Snape, and his eyes were full of tears.
“After all this time?”
“Always,” said Snape.”

As tragic as this story arc is, it’s the semblance I adore. And the willingness to sacrifice himself even for his love’s offspring is pretty much as deep as you can get.

 


Tapestry of Fates – Kickstarter Project

So the time has finally come. I have to admit I need help driving this project forward.
This set of books that has consumed most of my life (probably even more so than Phoenix!) is progressing at a complete snail pace. Maybe it was a mistake illustrating them (as some have told me in the past) and because I’m not the fastest artist, so much time has now passed since the first book was released, that the artwork from that one is now looking dated and shabby.

I did make a pledge to spend an hour a day on illustrating the second and third book, but other commitments have increasingly encroached on this precious time.

So I’ve decided that maybe a Kickstarter project may be the way to go. Offering pledgers artwork and characters dedicated to them if they aid me seems like an attractive path to take. The story is so vast, with it being spread over many millenia and worlds that adding important people into the mix without spoiling the narrative would be so easy. Secret chapters (many of which have already been written for other characters) is another way I’d hope to gain favour. There’s even the offer of one character that was instrumental in defeating Eclipse thousands of years previously. I’ve always planned on mentioning this legendary heroic character many times in the third book but thankfully never actually named him or her (or both – there were actually two).

Now I know many other authors will be thinking – “Cheeky shit! We all write books without funding, just get it done!” But the fact is, is that the books are almost pretty much completely written. It’s the fifty plus illustrations that require the massive amount of time to complete. And with the first book having already been out for a few years, it’s becoming frustrating that I cannot find time to devote to my labour of love. Funding would help free up time from my freelance work in order to get these pics painted, as well as pay for editing, typesetting, and publishing.

Even finding time at the moment to get the actual kickstarter page sorted is proving hard work! Haha!

But of course, it’s a risk. I may not get the funding at all, and may look a bit foolish for trying. But should that happen, what the hell eh? I gave it my best shot! More publicity for the work will be achieved and I’ll just find another way to get it done.

So watch this space.

Hope you all have a great Easter! 😀 x

 

Ken Dawson Kickstarter

 

Promo One Tap of Fates

 


The End of 2013, and the Future on the Flip of a Coin

Well I can honestly say it’s been a turbulant yet welcome end to the year in which big changes in my life have occured. I think now more than ever I’ve gained greater faith in my future and allowed myself to ‘let go’ of things which no longer serve me. Time to step into 2014 with my head held high and a wonderful sense of fresh hope.

But enough of that, and more about the work! I’m underway with the character designs for Bloodline Saga, with Sammy’s characters sketched and ready to be done. Also I’ve got lots more planned for Fallen Tears, with new twisted enemies and situations to throw at our determined and vengeful Dancescu twins.  I am even in the process of illustrating a large painting with most of the main characters on it. Once this book is finished I’ll be releasing it for free digitally aswell as print a few copies for whomever wants one.

Kens Characters 4

I’m still planning the massive amount of images for Spirit’s Pain. The book itself is just about to be edited. Because this is my most cherished piece of work I don’t want to rush it and screw it up. The last book Spirit’s Fury will be fully penned soon too, leading the way for the next three installments – The Shadoed Brethren.

Along with this, the planned nineteen books for Phoenix await my attention patiently. This could take many many years to write. I’m just glad I won’t be illustrating them ha!

So nobody can say I’ve got no work to be getting on with.

Which brings me to a great little story I was told a couple of weeks ago.

Whilst searching for design jobs, a pal of mine got me a job at her work, as a hotel porter. Obviously this means doing the usual stuff entailed with this role, carrying bags around, moving furniture around and helping guests etc. It’s a far cry from sitting at a desk calmly ploughing through design work, but the change of pace has been great. I’ve enjoyed the experience so far, and all the staff are awesome.

One of the staff, the head porter called David, who is an awesome jovial man and has been showing me the ropes, told me a story of how he came to work at the hotel, and stay in the position for over thirty-seven years. I liked it so much I thought I’d share it on my blog.

For those who know or have been to Blackpool – most will be aware that on the Southern edge of the resort, situated amongst the sand-dunes was a Pontins holiday camp (now sadly bulldozed to the ground). Many years ago David and a pal of his would venture to Blackpool from Liverpool in search of Summer work. One particular Summer landed the pair working at Pontins. Whilst checking in, David enquired where his room key was. He was politely informed that there was no need for a key, as the door was hanging off. Not a great start as you can imagine. So now David and his friend found themselves residing in the staff quarters – affectionately referred to as ‘the jungle’. Apparantly fights between the staff (mainly women David tells me!) happened constantly in the jungle, and the relentless rowdiness caused the pair to leave Pontins in search of alternative work.

As they stepped out onto the road outside Pontins they looked around, debating what to do next. The obvious choice would be to head into the bright lights of Blackpool, as the other direction seemed to be an empty road, with a quiet looking town in the distance (St. Annes! My town if you didn’t know!) But the two decided to flip a coin instead. Heads they turn right and head into Blackpool, where work is pretty much guaranteed. Or Tails, turn left and head down the long sandy road towards St. Annes (they didn’t even know its name at this point).

It was Tails.

To cut a long story short, after trekking into St. Annes David ended up working at the hotel I am now, and his friend started working at the town’s Conservative club.

As I’ve said in previous posts, I’m a great believer in quantum physics and this implies that another David landed Heads and went into Blackpool, thus taking his life in a completely different direction and changing his world as well as the lives of everyone at the hotel. I wonder if he found a job as a porter in Blackpool and stayed there for as long as he has in St. Annes.

It just shows that sometimes you need to place your destiny in the hands of fate.


The Last Sister of Vyse – Vixen

This is the last of the portraits of my female droids, but certainly not the least important for she is based upon my best friend Victoria.

Like my sister ‘Lil-Vix’ has a number of characters in my books and given her wacky, awesome personality in real life she is a fantastic person to write about.

Saying this, very little is written about the robot Vixen; like Dominion she doesn’t even show up until ‘The Shadowed Brethren’ books set after ‘Tapestry of Fates’. But I do have a great idea for her, and I’ve already decided she’ll be full of rage and mania similar to Eclipse-2.

Vicki and her boyfriend James (another awesome friend of mine!) are still travelling around Australia – as I stated in a previous post.

I miss them both.

Vixen

Vixen


Sisters of Vyse

I’ve wrote posts posts on who I like to think is my signature character – Angel. I’ve also stated before that I have put her in every piece of literature I’ve ever written, whether in her robot or human form. But her are her ‘sisters’ – collectively called the ‘Sisters of Vyse’. Without revealing any spoilers to Tapestry of Fates, this is because they are all versions of her, and are all based upon the doomed silicon based inhabitants of the planet Vyse.

Recently I decided to make some portraits of all the sisters.

Angel’s is in a post further down, and the final sister ‘Vixen’ will be drawn and painted next week.

This is ‘Punishment’ – built to be the strongest and heaviest of the Sisters, and is equipped with shoulder mounted missile launcher and a five foot rifle down her back. She makes up one third of the ‘Anti-Angel’ trio. She is based on my sister Kelly.

Click image to see full resolution version.

Punishment

Punishment – Tapestry of Fates

 

 

This is ‘Sin’ – the fastest and most nimble of all the Sisters. she has no weaponary but up for it with blazing speed. She is the second of the ‘Anti-Angel’ trio.

Sin

Sin – Tapestry of Fates

 

 

This is ‘Justice’ and is by far the most advanced of the ‘Sisters’ and makes up the last of the ‘Anti-Angel’ trio. She has the ability to self heal and even has a floating companion called ‘Sabre’ that hovers above her shoulder and provides assistance during combat. She is based upon my friend Hazel Tyler.

Justice - Tapestry of Fates

Justice – Tapestry of Fates

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally this ‘Dominion’ – the final Sister to be built. She is built with bio-mechanic technology. She cannot self-heal but possesses psychic ability and can hear the thoughts of others – living or artificial. She is based on my good friend Wendy.

Dominion - Tapestry of Fates

Dominion – Tapestry of Fates


New Artwork

In my head, I have hundreds of pieces of artwork I’d love to get produced.

I only wish I could pause time for a year and get everything done. Until I discover a way to do this, I’ll concentrate on finding new ways to increase my productivity.

Here’s a couple of new pieces.

This one was for my old school pal Tiffany who runs a fitness studio. She wanted a pole-dancing warrior type character.

pole_dancer_by_kenny_dreadful-d6g1suo

 

Close up

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And here’s the first in a set of portraits for the ‘Sisters of Vyse’ starting with my signature character – Angel

Most pictures of her are of her fighting so we only ever see her expressionless. She’s normally a happy, kind character so it’s nice to draw her smiling.

angel_by_kenny_dreadful-d6gmglt


New ‘Tapestry of Fates’ Website

I know I frequently give myself moooooorrreeeee than enough work to get through, especially when it comes to my own projects. Like most people who are passionate about what they do, I have tons of ideas, mostly for books and stories etc, (19 books worth of notes, ideas and scribbles for ‘Phoenix’) but finding the time to do them all, especially when I agreed to illustrate the entire Tapestry of Fates trilogy is truly taxing.

On the odd occasion I have had a lapse and a gripe about having to all these paintings. They take a bloody long time! And I’m not the fastest artist (although I am trying to find ways to speed up my workflow (like turning off Facebook for instance!)). But looking back, I’m grateful for giving myself the challenge of doing it, and truly feel it’s helped me become a better artist. So much so that I feel the illustrations for ‘Spirit’s Destiny’ aren’t up to scratch anymore. Hopefully I’ll feel the same about the artwork for ‘Spirit’s Pain’ when I work on ‘Spirit’s Fury’. Maybe I’ll go back and do them all again at the end 😉

Taking a look at the Tapestry of Fates website, it’s clear that the artwork on here is also dated. But rather than just accept it and concentrate on other things, I’ve torn it down and decided to rebuild and redesign it from scratch. Wahhh!

I’m sure I can be safe in the knowledge though that the eye bags I’m acquiring from the late nights of work will one day pay off! 😀

Until I get chance to build the site I have a new holding page showing the second book, and a quick line of wording to hint at the level of carnage about to be thrown at our heroine Ella! 😀

 

One bizarre thing I should note is that I originally wanted the books coloured Blue, then Yellow, then Red. Only later did I find out these are the colours used in the famous The Triumph of Death, or The 3 Fates tapestry. Ok I know that’s cream not yellow…..but still – spooky! 😀

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‘Bloodline Saga’ – the mother of all sibling rivalries

About nine months ago, me and my fab friend Sammy decided it would be an awesome idea to start a blog novel – and write it as we went along; each taking turns to write a chapter.

Final Logo

After a few loose ideas, an idea was formed around a huge sibling war, and then we created a world map to base it in.

The idea is that we each have 3 characters and then write the tale from their particular viewpoints throughout the war.

Map

Here is the (very) loose outline….

Even in childhood, there was never any love lost between the two.

Long before King Sarin of Pallanar had even died, his offspring were already fighting. His heir Princess Karla was already preparing for her reign over her frail and dying father when her younger brother Prince Ferris decides to attack. Fuelled by anger at his father for not obeying the age old laws of making the eldest son next in line to the throne, the Prince becomes obsessed with eradicating his sibling.

Outraged and anguished over his children’s hatred for each other, the king does the unthinkable and divides the land in two, splitting the kingdom between his son and daughter in a desperate effort to keep peace. Cut straight down the centre, the two new kingdoms are separated by bodies of sea, desert, mountains, forests, and valleys – ensuring both are kept well apart.

 

However, on the day of their father’s funeral, both Prince Ferris and Princess Karla, due to be royally ascended within the week, both glare at each other over their father’s coffin, and the crown that resides upon it.

Both know war is coming.

Both know neither will stop until the other is vanquished and the two kingdoms are set whole again.

The question is, once all the blood has been shed, once every life has been extinguished, and once the dust has finally settled, will there be any kingdom left to rule?

Bloodline Saga pic

I’m excited to see how this pans out and if we can keep it up. 🙂 I’ll be sorting artwork and the site soon.

Naturally Book 2 (Spirit’s Pain) and Book 3 (Spirit’s Fury) of Tapestry of Fates are still are my number one priority, but it’s nice to have a side venture too. 🙂


Tapestry of Fates Book 2 – Spirit’s Pain Back Cover

Still ever onwards with the trilogy! Here’s my back cover with Ella, Gemma, and Tristan, and the COT and the lost moon in the background. I was gonna include Angel and Seraphim in there somewhere but didn’t want to make it too busy.

SP Back Cover MAIN small


Book 2 ‘Spirit’s Pain’

Well the ball is most definitely rolling in getting the second book of Tapestry of Fates complete. Since the actual story was completed back in 2008, all that is left to be done is the artwork and making the second draft.

Here’s the cover for it, including the artwork without any text on it.

Here we see Ella reluctantly heading up towards the Red Saviour. Originally I just envisioned the suit being a tight fighting red ensemble. But during painting I decided she should have ‘chakra’ style orbs down her back. Obviously I missed out the red base chakra, otherwise sitting might be quite uncomfatable 😀

Book 2 Cover ‘Spirit’s Pain’


Untold Tapestry of Fates Chapters – No.2 Lieutenant Lee Dowson ‘Ultimate Foe’

Wow! I have been slacking on my blog.

Not through laziness you understand, but through a never-ending ‘to-do’ list.

I will be back mumbling and grumbling asap.
Until then, here is another untold chapter. This one concerns my awesome cousin Lee who I almost share an identical surname with.

Love ya cuz! 😀

As I’ve explained before, these chapters are very rough and were not intended to be published. So bear that in mind.

Lieutenant Lee Dowson ‘Ultimate Foe’


Untold Tapestry of Fates Chapters – No.1 S.A. Holly Balfour ‘Sacrifices’

Even though the second book of Tapestry of Fates ‘Spirit’s Pain’ is now getting scrubbed down and illustrated, it will still take time until all nineteen images (twenty if you count the cover) are complete.

So until then I’ve decided to post the ‘Untold Chapters’ that were solely for personal entertainment. Since most of the characters are based on friends and family, I gave them each a personal chapter, detailing more about their history and further enriching the Tapestry of Fates universe. They are very raw, unedited and quite old, so don’t expect any great masterpeices of fiction. But they are also very meanigful to me.

I’m sure the people who they’re based on won’t mind me posting them.

The first one to be posted is Special Agent Holly Balfour’s chapter – ‘Sacrifices’.

Holly is a good friend I met years through a love of Art, Final Fantasy, and Mini Kievs. 🙂

The chapter can be downloaded here – S.A. Holly Balfour ‘Sacrifices’


‘Angel Must Die’ – New artwork

Here’s a new illustration for three Angel-esque looking droids.

Their names are Sin, Punishment, & Justice. I won’t say anymore to avoid revealing spoilers for Tapestry of Fates book 2 & 3 😀

Angel Must Die image

Three droids who pay a small resemblence to the pink robot girl Angel 🙂


Spirit’s Pain Poster

Ok I know I’ve been slacking with my posts here. This will be sorted soon and I’ll be rambling about ‘stuff’ again soon!

Until then here’s the first poster for part two of Tapestry of Fates – Spirit’s Pain.

Part 1 – Spirit’s Destiny is still available through Amazon 🙂

Tapestry of Fates Spirit’s Pain


Shiny Books and Anti-Piracy Insurance

Well last week, the time finally arrived! The long awaited delivery of the paperback versions of Spirit’s Destiny finally arrived, only a meagre six months late! It would be fair to say I had my doubts if they would ever turn up! Anyone who has had dealings with large corporations in foreign speaking countries will no doubt understand the difficulties in getting clear cut answers to important questions such as, ‘When?’ and ‘How much?’

Replies to both questions in the past few months have been vague, grossely incorrect or downright misleading. Having played this game a few years earlier with our children’s book ‘Island of Ice’, we thought we’d got this sussed out, but in our anticipation of the same problems cropping up, we failed to see the huge wet kipper of new problems we got slapped in the face with. And each company involved in the production and transportation of these books tried everything they could in vain to squeeze every last quid from us. From replies from the printers such as – ‘What you mean you expected the huge ‘transportation bill’ (£250+) to be for the entire journey to England? That’s just what we charge to take the cargo to the docks.’ To the Haulage company scoffing ‘Yea, that European number you gave us – we didn’t get chance to put it through on Friday. As it’s Monday we’re charging you three days storage charge. That’s £100 on top of the £500 fee please.’

We received a breakdown from the haulage company for why they were pulling our pants down so violently only to get an email with around a dozen abbreviated items. A bit of digging indicted some of these were for anti-piracy insurance, and one ridiculous £80 charge for ‘The passing of documents’.

Anyway after flipping every last copper we had their way, the books finally arrived and I’m happy to say they’re all perfect. Now they are about to be put on Amazon, and sent to a few reviewers worldwide.

Also bookmarks are to be made up now.

So happy things have finally been sorted.

 

Back of the bookmark 🙂

 


New Spirit’s Destiny Review

As I’ve previously mentioned before, Authonomy.com is a site where you can upload your book to receive critique,, meet fellow aspiring authors and read the work of others – all for free. All seems to add up to a great deal on signing up, but the second you announce you’re a part of the community, floods of requests from people asking you read their book instantly flood your mailbox. It can be quite overwhelming as you realise the selfishness of humanity has no limits.

I made a vague promise to read some of these books and actually did look at a couple. But then a message came in from one lady giving critique on my own work, without any initial request to read her own. After the barrage of ‘Read my book! Read my book! You’ll love it! You’ll love it!‘ I was quite touched and humbled that someone had taken the time to read my own stuff first.

Thus I was more inclined to read her work straight away. And it was a good decision! Her work has literally blown me away and I continue to plough through the mammoth (in both size and quality) novel she had penned.

Since then small exchanges of work has taken place, including me asking her opinion on Spirit’s Destiny. Not only did she give me her opinion, but she wrote a full review for her blog, even asking me a few questions for it!

So bless you Sam! Joining Authonomy was one of my better decisions this year! 🙂

Here is the review.

Make sure you follow this girl too, for from the quality of her own work I can see her name in bright lights very soon!

🙂

 

 


Book 2 Cover Background

The start of all the new work.

New kids book stuff coming soon too 🙂

The Spirit Child


The First Shmup Novel

Ok I’ll admit, my beloved Tapestry of Fates does have elements in it which pay a slight resemblance to a movie about a time-travelling robot sent to kill the mother of a certain John Conner. Whilst I see the similarities, I can honestly say The Terminator was not the main influence, nor was any movie for that matter.

As a youngster I was besotted with my beloved  Sega Megadrive; and it probably paved the road to my future imagination. Games like Gunstar Heroes, Alien Soldier, Landstalker, Splatterhouse 2 and many others have helped build the internal foundations of my mind.

One game particularly has stood out more than others. Already a huge fan of ‘shoot em ups’ or ‘shmups’, I remember being blown away by the game ‘Thunderforce IV’ (or ‘Lightening Force as it’s sometimes known). It’s cool slick graphics, blazing speed, mass of weapons, stupendously big bosses and fantastic music and sound effects so bassy that you could feel them at the back of your head all added to a game which still stands as legendary (I’m not a huge fan of more recent ‘bullet-hell’ shmups, although I adore Ikaruga).

One part of it though captured my imagination more than others. After an epic battle with the final boss, and the hero jets away in his battered craft, we are shown an epilogue that included an image of the pilot hugging his beloved. That single image managed to drive home a piece of humanity and emotion into the game, making you believe that after ten levels of sheer hell, the pilot was so grateful to be back. I wish the game makers – Technosoft had included some sort of storyline surrounding this couple, as it would have charged the game even more.

It’s this reason why Tapestry of Fates exists.

It is why a lone student girl becomes the only human being able to pilot a legendary fighter ship against an enemy who’s spent the past five thousand building up enough forces to decimate her.

It is why this ship sits on almost every piece of artwork I’ve made on the books.

I’ve tried to do what I wanted Technosoft to do – make a fully fledged story based around a single person sent against hordes and legions of enemies, and be expected to win.

Maybe I’m wrong but I think I can honestly say that Ella Bland is the first Shmup Novel Protagonist.

 

A homage to the above picture I did for uni can be viewed here.


Recent Developments

They always say you should take the rough with the smooth, look on the bright side of every situation, and search for the silver lining upon each stormy cloud.

I guess 2012 hasn’t started the way I had hoped, and I find myself once again travelling to the leafy, tree laden crematorium of Lawnswood in Leeds this week to say goodbye to yet another family member.

Whilst these are sad times for my family, and my thoughts are with them all, my own endeavours seem to going in the opposite way.

Firstly I’ll repeat my other posts that the first book of Tapestry of Fates – Spirit’s Destiny has gone on sale. Only the kindle version mind; the physical copies will on sale soon.

Here’s the link.

Also the first unbiased review of the book was put online by sfbook.com  Thankfully I can now see I’m not wasting my time or fooling myself with this writing game. Thanks for Antony for the review.

Lastly the Tapestry of Fates website is up and running. A few more tweaks are needed and the site needs updating for when the physical book is released. Here’s the website.

So whilst things are a bit glum this week, and I’ll be putting all my energy towards helping my family, at least I can feel some kind of relief that a few things are sorted on the writing front and can be left for a short while.

On saying this I’ll still have the second chapter of Fallen Tears uploaded this week.


First Book Review

Big thanks to Antony at http://www.sfbook.com for agreeing to review Spirit’s Destiny. 🙂

It’s nice to see an unbiased opinion on my work, and has been a great relief to myself that I’m not kidding myself about becoming an author.

The review can be read here.

http://sfbook.com/spirits-destiny.htm


My Novel Finally On Sale

Finally after seven years of hard slogging, my book has finally gone on sale. :)
Although it is only in Kindle format atm.
The paperback copies will be on sale hopefully withina month. Their shipping has been delayed for Chinese New Year.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Spirits-Destiny-Tapestry-Fates-ebook/dp/B006YJR88S/ref=pd_rhf_dp_p_t_2


The End Of Resolution

The emergence of the New Year springs forth a flurry of resolutions on my Facebook and Twitter feeds. Lose weight, earn more money, get a new job – whatever you can think of there’s a vow upon quite a number of statuses. Now up until this year most of my resolutions revolved around getting my books finished, or driving. Neither of which materialised.

Now over the past twelve months I’ve learnt from numerous sources that New Year’s resolutions don’t work. Most people drop them pretty much in the first month of declaring them (I say most, so I don’t get an ear-bashing off anyone keeping up theirs!) This is because we’ve just spent the latter part of December building up bad, comfortable habits that usually entail drinking lots of booze and munching on far too much food. Then suddenly we tell ourselves we have to break these habits and live a more stricter life. No wonder we all get the Winter blues.

Now I simply stick to the goals in my little book (see Book of Goals post) which I religiously read back to myself everyday. Not one New Year’s resolution was added into it. And voila, no Winter doldrums! I could attribute this argument to last January’s downer, although my first traumatic viewing of Wall-E could also be a factor here.

So my plan from now on is to religiously adhere to goals I set myself over the course of the year, at times that suit me, not when society dictates.

I’ll keep this blog posted on how this works out ha!

Ok I have told one lie, my book has finally been published and Tapestry of Fates: Spirit’s Destiny will be put on Amazon in the next few days.

Here are some more website pictures for it.

Eclipse -3