The Sheer Joy of Achievement (A trilogy is completed)

Nearly one year ago I posted up that Part III of the Precipice Dominions, being Daughters of Circumstances. Arbiters of Consequences’ initial draft had been completed and the fun part of editing, re-writing and so forth would be begin. When the volume is around 250,000 words this tends to encourage the urge to make sure everything melds together and continuity of the previous volumes Of Patchwork Warriors and Our Skirmishers of Lace, Steel and Fire runs smoothly. Since neither had sold well, there was the luxury of yet another re-edit of those works. Thus the past year has been an epic of not just rooting out persistent typos, but straightening syntax and a modest adjustment here and there. In addition along came the bonus of having tremendous fun in two less than serious marketing campaigns:

Just for Marketing and Giggles- The British Approach

Just for Marketing and Giggles II (The team conference)

There was some worrying or to be precise reflection over the length. Though in setting out a backdrop which involved several seemingly separate conflicts; being military, political and one of obligation which actually all overlay and interlock; to give each their fair due the narrative would have to be long. I also have this need (Flaw? Some might say) to go into depth on how events and their own subsequent actions affect a character; this comes from reading much military history; some of my writing is thus a dedication to those who have been there at ‘The Sharp End’. Having worked in the UK Civil Service for most of my life there was also the need to illustrate some of the complexities, frictions and downright follies which go on. Combining personal experience with reading military history convinced me there are no perfect or cunning plans by a villain or group of villains which nearly go right. A great number of the decisions are made on the hoof as it were. Hence witness blundering, hasty reactions, indecision and being wrong-footed by the unexpected. Heroics combined with astute tactics and strategies are valuable, but for them to work they require the foe to display error and sometimes stupidity which must be seized upon. 

In these days of worrying news and illustrations that the ‘bad guys’ do not get their neatly served up just deserts, something which is common in fiction too, there was a tendency to kick back. My intention was for the reader to enjoy the journey (a lot of differing ‘scenery’ out there folks)  and indulge the feel-good factors…… Which didn’t stop me stretching credibility, after all this is a Fantasy Novel with many different things happening in the greater environment; reading cosmology and trying to understand the basics of quantum mechanics / physics while including spirituality and some might say nods to ‘Gaia’ tended to also add to the mix.

A mash-up some might accuse me of. A Complete hodgepodge of themes untidily mixed together. A wandering series of confused elements.  My response is a shrug and to reply ‘Have to you looked around the messy world, read the confusions recorded in history and seen the questions arising in the sciences these days? Arguably these books are as close to A Reality as anything out there in your world,’  

And, so there it is:

The Gilrs in Yermetz in Finality   

Sometime in the next week there will be an announcement of the launch on Kindle….a few days free of course. Now all that’s left on My List being:

The blurb

Worrying whether Amazon will upload the whole lot.

And musing on how to correctly and seriously interest folks in the whole trilogy. For this Volume would be a hard slog, if not incomprehensible without reading the previous two. Therefore there will be another post giving an Overview of the entire Trilogy; intentions, themes and commentary on the narrative.   

About 5 to 6 years reaching this point. And I admit to feeling very durn good about the whole business. Sales would be nice, but ‘High Holy‘ (as they say in the books) seeing the project completed and out there….well, Satisfied and Content don’t come close.

On Deciding Which Place To Be

I suppose it may have been the Summer again. Or to be more objective my attitude to the summer season. The heat, the bright sunlight, long daylight, activity even muted by Covid; these do not suit me. Of course at 70 one should not wish life away, years, months even days should not be squandered and yet winter draws me ever on.

Summer brings out the worst in me, particularly this one had me in a very combative mood and willing to engage in arguments on social media, on all manner of topics, just because. All very undignified and not the least bit profitable  There was an effort not to smear this mood all over WP and keep it where it belonged – FaceBook. Hence my general absence from WP

Happily there was a smidge of constructive dignity still working within. This, of course being attention to my own writing project. If you have followed my blog you will know about my ragged progress and less than serious approach to marketing 

Another Launch (Persistence Doesn’t Always Pay, But It’s Satisfying)

Just for Marketing and Giggles- The British Approach

Just for Marketing and Giggles II (The team conference)

Although the last volume of the trilogy was in theory completed one year ago, the re-write process beckoned. This, personally is an enjoyable stage, aside from the obvious corrections, tinkerings and checking continuity in all its manifold ways, there is the joy of realising the overall intentions were surviving the necessities of a narrative. On this particular jaunt there was an urge within to re-visit the previous two volumes and work through them one last time to ensure they led in a sort of cohesive manner unto the third. Thus 2021 has been a year in which three large (If you are doing epic fantasy ‘large/long’ is something of a requirement) volumes were aligned. Yet another series of re-writes, I like to muse over the situation that should these books ever achieve noticeable sales status how early purchasers could brag they have ‘first editions’ and argue the case for the writing or narrative of those. A writer whose history does not contain even the words ‘some modest success’ should always keep an element of whimsey in their head (either that or take marketing and allied disciplines seriously)

On the whole the process has been yet another enjoyable and enlightening process. AS WE all know Word has many failings. Yet Read Aloud along with the ability to shift entire chapters around like chess pieces do carry their own particular appeals, also a sense of The Unexpected. In the case of the former this would be the sudden lurch into another gender’s voice, like some intrusive boor blundering into a conversation you are having with a friend, while Word throws up a frantic yellow bar warning in a woefully inadequate attempt to deny all culpability. When it comes to the latter shifting portions of the narrative might look fine at a particular juncture, but they could have a tectonic effect in The Continuity much further on down; by then the original revision is so embedded into the narrative it is necessary to give way to the impetus set in place back at at Chapter Fifteen and amend with much vigour to the events laid out in the first (or second) draft at Chapter Fifty-One. These are something of a melding of the Artistic, Imaginative and above all Inventive in the business. Some folk enjoy crosswords, siduko, chess or card game puzzles. for me the challenge of the re-write is the thing.   

The Third Volume nears final (only three re-writes) completion, the artist who did such stunning work on Volume Two’s cover is on the case.  Skirmishers  So maybe the final work will see the light of Kindle by the end of the year.

Ah me, this is where I should have been spending more time than was spent. Three volumes completed, a joy in itself. But soft, I have tarried long enough. Time to break camp and set forth on the final clime up the last 35,000 words.

Daughters of Circumstances. Arbiters of Consequences.   (Being Volume 3 of The Precipice Dominions)

I do love this happy burden.

Sometimes, We Characters Need to Explain The Position

Hello everyone. Firstly I hope you are managing to cope as well as you can with all the trials and troubles in your world. They do seem to be very testing times.

Anyway, allow me to introduce myself to those of you not familiar with The Precipice Dominions stories, those being Of Patchwork Warriors; Our Skirmishers of Lace, Steel, and Fire and the concluding work Daughters of Circumstances. Arbiters of Consequences. My name is Trelli, as I am an orphan of unknown parents the folk looking after me never did get around to giving me a surname and until recently it never bothered me much. However under the influence of adventure, consequential excitement and of course ever the present Ethereal, in a fit of exuberance I titled myself Trelyvana Waywanderer and folk did seem to find it easier to cope with. It must be one of those quirks, that people do like a bit of the grandiose, at least when you are expected to place your Sanity, Integrity and Life all at risk for the good of…. a lot of people.

I am here as representative of the three of us. That is myself and my very good friends Arketre Beritt and Karlyn Nahtinee . Although Karlyn says she should be known as Karlyn Beritt now, but Arketre says in view of the situation there is a case for her being named Arketre Nahtinee. And then the whole business gets very tangled, so I say folk should read the three books and decide for themselves. (I understand that last statement could be read as ‘Marketing’- which Merklin says……Oh dear now I am getting ahead of myself and digressing; bear with me and I’ll start again).

Due to the events subsequent to Daughters of Circumstances. Arbiters of Consequences Arketre and Karlyn are somewhat preoccupied with more pressing personal matters whereas since I am now in the heady world of politics it would seem to be a requirement to have (1) An Opinion on; (2) Advice to give about; and (3) The need to explain, everything you come across, which is where this, (I believe the term is) ‘Post’ originates.

I understand those of you who follow Roger’s blog will be aware the third volume is completed and awaiting a book cover. As I am very familiar with the frenetic pace at which he uses keyboards; which is very rarely in synchronicity with his thought processes and also his inclination to use very convoluted prose I thought it would be helpful to read back over the two previous volumes for errors in typing, transmissions, syntax and of course continuity, so I stole away a copy of each of the volumes and with feet up on my favourite sofa, a few small snacks and a large pot of herbal brew started off.

Oh dear, I thought. Although that maybe a bit of an exaggeration, more a case of ‘Hmmmm’. It’s not the errors in typing, apparently those seem to be something quite unavoidable unless you hire a team of at least five dedicated proof-readers and then there is the risk they can get into a fearful argument between themselves over punctuation and other rules of grammar, thus holding the whole business up.

No, the problem was, whereas he did get the general narrative correct, in a linear fashion, as it were, some of his details were quite incorrect.

For instance: When Arketre had her first conversation with Zweideutig and introduced us, while the discourse between the two went on Karlyn and I did not get into an undignified wrestling match which Arketre threatened to break up with a bucket of dirty water. We were simply having a spirited argument over my reading matter, how I had appropriated the said works and whether Karlyn had the right to go rummaging through my possessions, this was halted when Arketre in her best LifeGuard sergeant style required our opinions on a temporal displacement. I asked Roger how on The Good Lord God’s World he had decided his account was the correct version of events.

‘Well Karlyn told me-‘

‘Karlyn told you?’ I exclaimed ‘You’ll be believing one of those ridiculous YouTube or FaceBook accounts next!! I have told you before. Watch her eyes! If she blinks swiftly twice and her glance darts to the left, she’s up to mischief . Oh really Roger! You are a good sort, but you are too willing to listen to the words of the more lively folk,’

Then I had to take him to task about his assumption I had certain physical feelings for Wigran. He tried to defend himself by waffling about ‘subtext’ to which he was told in no uncertain terms to ask me about sub-texts as I had had to deal with them all, in the whole three volumes! Honestly, you would have thought someone of his age would have known better!!

Basically I have undertaken to guide him back through the account. For the reputations of everyone, be they good or bad, and to give full credit to those who played fleeting but important parts in the drama. As I understand it; historians in your world are doing this all the time; they write a book, new evidence turns up and every so often they write a new edition with some alteration or other. The basic story and the important elements, though, all remain the same.

I cannot comment on what he has written about the more private interludes Arketre and Karlyn shared. He has said they were written based on Arketre’s accounts and with her looming over his shoulder; he added this was most unnerving. She said he had left the best bits out, trying to type with his eyes shut was the most damn fool thing she had ever seen and if he had spent less time looking for references in a Thesaurus he would have got the thing done in half the time. Apparently there were other observations but he was not repeating them. And having found out what he had been writing Karlyn would not speak to him for days afterwards, which itself may have been to his advantage. In any case on this topic he has my sympathy. Personally I thought he has been most fayre in an adventurous wryly tasteful way on the subject of my own later experiences and so have forgiven him for being such a noddle over Wigran.

I am not very angry for it has been fun to read back over the adventures and he has been very sympathetic to us all but in matters of import, as these are to us, it is necessary to get the record straight.

I will keep you appraised of matters.

Best wishes to you all

Trelli (Silc)… or Trelyvana Waywanderer

One Prologue is Worth a Dozen Chapters

Sometimes your have one volume with a very complicated plot which requires a foundation so the reader isn’t pestered with blank spaces which are filled in some stage down the narrative by one character suddenly breaking into a quite out of context explanation or the sudden desire to give a back story.

There again you may have embarked upon a multi-volume work and are up to your syntax and continuity in characters of various degrees of importance, plots, sub-plots and conflicts of interest. Whereas you may be living a portion of your life in this world you should not expect your readership to so and thus remember whether this character vital to Volume III had had a walk-on part in Volume I.

In these situations The Prologue is a useful device. If you are writing Fantasy…

He’s up to something….No I am not. It’s a prologue of a prologue!!

… it is almost a necessity otherwise you do have characters indulging in long explanations to another character which in normal circumstances the latter would not require, being it is hoped familiar with the nuances of their own world. In this genre you will have enough of a problem fitting in those explanations or discoveries which are generally unknown without having to include a running commentary for the reader. Prologues set the scene. Many successful authors use this device. As did many before The Bard and contemporaneous with Shakespeare. For instance he has a Chorus in the opening Scenes of Henry V and in Romeo and Juliet and you should not quibble over the fact this is one person, it would only sound confusing to have a lot of folk saying the same thing. Thus, if you are paying attention you will have an idea of ‘what’s what’.

A prologue can take many forms, a piece of action or dialogue before the main narrative. Sometimes it can take the form of a potted portion of history, this type should be approached with caution, lest it morph into a style which would be better suited to a factual history book. I had this problem upon reaching Vol III of my Fantasy trilogy….

Here it comes folks!.. Stealth Marketing…. I shall ignore that with all the dignity at my disposal

….. I was simply going to record because the overall plot was reflecting the many facetted aspects of conflicts political and military when more then two parties are involved. There was by then a great deal of detail swirling around and this begged a summary. So I tried a few ‘historical accounts’ by various anonymous writers and none worked (See above-History)

It then occurred to me, at least one character would be in a similar situation trying to make sense of everything. The natural choice was Arketre Beritt, being military and without particular ‘Ethereal’ Powers she would be short of the extra perceptions Karlyn & Trelli have, and since she was military would be wary as to where the next crisis might come from. Thus between us (I always work with the characters, they have a far better insight than I do) we put together an incident where she attempts to chart and list all the possible threats, influences and problems on the various horizons.

Aside from this prologue having an element of acerbic comedy, which is Arketre’s forte, it would also serve to show the reader just what a convoluted hoo-hah everything had become. This state of affairs being a visualisation of the tangle which became WWII, Vietnam in the 1950s-1970s, Iraq in the previous decade and any patch of European history between …..well any time …In short no one was every truly in control or genuinely working with each other. We decided italics would work best to illustrate when she was writing or maybe having particularly vivid (polite alternative) thoughts.

Thus Arketre and I give you…The Prologue (aside from the initial physical scene setting and Arketre’s brief look-back, left out as not truly pertinent to the post). The romantic ending is deliberately left in as that plays several very important parts in the narrative….No, not The Relationship in general, causes for banter, noble sacrifice, tensions and scenes of an intimate nature. You need the book to find out…

Oh Marketing! The Horror! The Horror!

 …….         Late night in the town of Yermetz. The air chill, a reminder Spring was still young. A figure seated at a desk, candle flickering due to a draft whose source still evaded detection.

          As satisfied as she was Beritt was not inclined to be complacent and expect things to go on this easy. There were wars brewing, wars happening, wars in places far away and wars right under your nose, most folk could not see those last sort of wars. Beritt was realistic enough to appreciate she could only see a fraction of them at any time, so all the more reason to make sure she would be alert to anything coming her way.

          It was a simple task really. Sit down with a large sheet of parchment, in the centre draw three circles with their first names written therein, then around them draw more circles with the names of all the organisations and people she reckoned could affect them. Once this was accomplished draw lines from these others to Me, Kitlin and Trelli, then lines which would link each of the organisation or people to each other. It would be like drawing a map, on scouting missions, you just had to keep a clear head and be methodical.

          She carefully inscribed their names, adding extra curves to the letters K-I-T-L-I-N.

          Then those to watch out for. The LifeGuard were, naturally, her first choice, only she found herself writing under its big circle, smaller ones to hold the names ‘Centre of Command and Decision- Drygnest’, ‘Colonel Rachteg’ and ‘Captain Dekyria’, because all three had been in contact with her or once through Kitlin at differing times with differing messages or in the case of the amorphous first trying to incinerate her as an acceptable loss. She didn’t feel inclined to draw lines yet.

          Next came ‘The Libratery’, she had once been a member; a humble Novice Devoted. Take into account Trelli had grown up in one of their orphanages and of late had been at their tuscatalian fortress Altoviani Settentrionali, working for them. Bear in mind, last year when seeking out Trelli, apparently Kitlin had annoyed a Surveyoress Coltello who Trelli reckoned was up to more than she seemed. Thus once more two separate circles under a bigger circle. The lines would certainly take some careful work. Then she remembered The Devoteds had Ragithyl sort of imprisoned or something. So she had to add his name, grunting to herself for he would cause a tangle.

          She then wrote ‘Decoryx’ the land of Prince Atherlin. She had been based in his realm and Trelli came from there, and he seemed to be held in ‘Fond Regard’ with The LifeGuard. Not actually pressing into her space, but worth putting down because for her that was where everything had begun. This was going to be more involved than she had reckoned. Some lines would have to bend all the way around the parchment if they weren’t going to get in the way of others. Some might intersect, she would have to think of symbols to indicate what sort of intersection. She frowned, sipped cooling coffee.

          ‘Elinid’ came next. That was where Kitlin originally claimed she had come from. Trelli had ended up there for a short time, so had Ragithyl while Wigran part of Trelli’s earlier life and deeply involved in the original mess now worked for The Silcs, and when you mentioned The Silcs it seemed they were in contact with Captain Dekyria. Another long line which would have to curve. Now there were several more circles all in a little huddle as if they were keeping a secret from her….Oh yeah and the Silcs were probably involved with that Coltello girl……Frib!

          And while she’d been thinking of Kitlin, Custodian Meradat loomed into her head, he was supposed to be of the Office of Custodians (or whatever they called themselves) but didn’t appear to get on with his seniors. Also neither he, his seniors nor The Libratery didn’t seem to pay any attention to the Official top of Religion The Ecclesiastes. She scowled at the thought of the fresh number of circles ,which in a fit of resentment at this intrusion into her military and civil world she placed in the far away bottom right corner of the parchment ensuring they kept out of her way until she was good and ready for them.

          Of course she had to include Terasonia. Of late the land had loomed large in the three women’s lives, this led to her having to include separate items for the Four Grand Dukes, the new prince, More-Than-He-Seemed Zweideutig and The Terasonian Church. Hoping they were no longer her problem she placed them off to the far left in the middle. Her modest amount of satisfaction at this arrangement soured when she remembered Osavus Trelli’s lover. He would have to be included because you could never tell with love what might happen. Beritt was glad she did not know the name of the girl he was betrothed to.

          And when you mentioned Terasonia, you had to mention The Shadow Lords; she put them next to the terasonian collection. She couldn’t really remember if there was more than one lot of Shadow Lords, she decided not to press the issue. Between that grouping and her, Kitlin and Trelli’s names she placed the evil The Zerstorung, got more confused and found she had had to put a separate entry for each group of them, being Air, Land and Deep. She glowered at the name Ragithyl for his previous involvement with at least two of them and cursed him for reminding her of at least of the Silcs being, possibly attached. 

          At this stage she sat back and huffed, then grimaced in spectacular proportions. Several of the circles seemed to want to be somewhere else. Maybe she should have put all the names on small bits of other parchment and shuffled them about on the larger piece. The ever growing numbers of groups and characters caused her to relate it to the patchwork of The Oakhostian Empire. At this thought she ground her teeth, she now had to make one entry for The Oakhostian as an empire and one for the Emperor Loosiderue because if you were a LifeGuard you didn’t think an Emperor as half as important as the whole. An image of the court and the princes came into her thoughts. Princes made her think of Henrich (The Useless) of Valeneg (her current location) and to his eastern borders, Prince Habgierig of Krenderenberg of whom Prince Atherlin of Decoryx had very unfavourable opinions. More circles. More lines. She shuddered at the notion of just how many little coded symbols at the intersections she would have to make. She forced down other names bubbling up, some from the winter’s activities around Terasonia and others due to the possibilities of ‘unpleasantness’ on Valeneg’s borders. Irritation invited her to vent its smouldering by her petulant drawing on the bottom central edge of a very untidy circular shape into which she inserted the phrase ‘Other wobblers and sheep-chasers of the Nobility’

          This done she dropped her elbows onto the table and her chin into her clenched fists, glaring at the confusion of circles whose numbers and arrangements  had there been any further additions these might have been set to form a mocking grin. She looked to ‘Kitlin’ for comfort and fond memories, only to remember her bride had mentioned that evasive fellow ‘Krongar’ in terms which had suggested his own entry and his presence of course reminded her of the danger of Karlyn’s Shadow Lord’s family. With a growl she found a place far from any other and attacked the parchment, the circle was bigger than that of Loosiderue’s for whom, presently she didn’t give a mouldy carrot. She savagely addressed the circle, got as far as ‘Krong-‘  and the tip of the quill snapped off.

          In fact due to impact coupled with the snapping the word looked like ‘Kronpf’ which was a type of honeyed oat cake favoured in the most central regions of the Oakhostian and suggested she might be the clerke for a bakery cartel which had a ridiculously grandiose idea of marketing.

          Cursing quills in general Beritt turned her anger into determination. She had spent precious bedtime on this, her investment would not be lost. She would not cut up the parchment into strips for use in the privy, something Trelli disapproved of, saying used parchment aside from being rough left ink stains on places you did not want ink stains. Also Beritt resolved she would not take the infernal work outside to tear into small bits, an act which might provide interest to the local cats out on nocturnal patrol. No, she could take up her charcoal stick and draw fribbing lines!

          But first to inscribe in angry charcoal letters ‘Kitlin’s Fribbing Interfering Family’.  To anyone else a rather enigmatic statement perched in the top left corner.

          After sometime of trying straight lines, curved lines, lines which went into loops and lines which gleefully forced her to have them cross over each other and despite the invention of symbols still became confused as to their direction; after the appearance of lines, which on other occasions, possibly when drinking wine, might have been seen to form amusingly vulgar shapes Beritt broke the charcoal stick in two and threw it at the wall.

          Obviously the whole business was not one suitable to sane folk. Folk who when attacked by someone simply hit back until that attacker either ran away or stopped moving. Folk who stood ‘here’ and if they had to go ‘there’ went in the least dangerous way. Folk who once in a while would like a very simple set of orders which had a start and a finish. Folk who had not been transferred and thence trained to work in one of the select LifeGuard units. Such as The Office of Expropriation’s Leopard Company, whose members after rigorous training and only having a casual acquaintance with sanity, went out to spy on suspect groups or burn down suspects groups’ habitations or slay as many members of the suspects groups as necessary and slip away, without anyone noticing; all the while not really caring who the groups were or why this group had been selected when a lunation ago the group had been considered allies. 

          No, she would not scrumple up, stamp on, nor tear up or even bite chunks out of the parchment, each urge briefly considered as feasible. She would roll the whole stupid mess up, tie a piece of string about it and place in her backpack for later use. Either as a point of reference, or if the need arose to symbolically wave under the nose of any senior officer who asked her for a report, or in very trying situations she would threaten (at some later stage) to insert up their backside if they dared asked her some damn fool question when she was otherwise engaged.

          The lesson learned. She would simply have to stay alert for danger from all sorts of directions, trusting only in her friend the ever maturing Trelli and, smiling fondly in the direction of the bedroom door, her darling, funny, caring, wonderfully unpredictable Kitlin.

          And she would go back to the easier task of studying the manual on infantry company tactics which she had found in The Translator Pastoral’s library. He had feigned surprise at it being there. She did not ask. 

          Stowing away the parchment roll in a less than tender manner, and disrobing she padded to the bed. She paused to smile fondly at her Kitlin. Maybe the girl was of Shadow Lord’s blood. So what? She was still a beautiful woman, and Beritt congratulated herself on having ensured the girl had finally discarded those concerns, dismissing the pleas made by folk they had encountered who claimed to be relatives. Yes, her Kitlin had spouted off some references to her heritage and expanded on that to those Shadow Lords soldiers but that had all been a bit of an act to scare them. Of late discussions on the subject often ended in Karlyn assuming the role of a haughty princess and Arketre Beritt in other guises, all play with one objective.

          To fall into bed laughing. And then for loving to begin.

          All hers, made formal by a patronising yet useful ceremony. Once more relishing the irony Beritt then as she often did when Karlyn had gone to bed earlier stood and enjoyed the sight.

          Her love was in deep sleeping, arms wrapped around Beritt’s pillow. She gently eased the pillow from out of the embrace; there came a whimper of protest, which she stilled by taking the pillow’s place causing a murmur of delight and a sigh of satisfaction. As she settled in, her Kitlin’s long, lithe arms slipped around her accompanied by a sleepy kiss on the back of her head. Beritt managed to get the pillow back in place and falling into the rhythm of Karlyn’s breathing, joined her beloved in sleep.  These nights she didn’t even need the candle still burning. Her Kitlin’s arms would keep the doubts and fears away..………..

End of Prologue……

If it has worked readers will now be prepared for the lot of tangle, and a fair idea as to the number of who are doing the tangling (or untangling)….

PS: Any long term followers and kind supporters/contributors to my posts and books are more than welcome to ask for a PDF version in advance of the official publication: All enquiries to nnqp1863@yahoo.co.uk

And Thus Is Completed The Narrative

One novel. Daughters of Circumstances. Arbiters of Consequences. (Being Vol III of the Precipice Dominions ) 234,927 words.

(And so follows a discourse with someone who might mean well. They are actually possessed of existence only in my head, because I suspect my answers and the way I would deliver them would drive a normal person to exasperation and the temptation to throw objects at me.)

Person:234,927 Really? Were so many words necessary?

Me: Yes. It’s the last part of a Fantasy Epic Heroic Trilogy. And those sorts of books have to have lotsa words in them. Complain to George R R Martin, not me…By the way there’ll be more if I put titles at the start of each chapter…all 84 of them…there’s a foreword, a prologue and an epilogue too.

Person: Yes, even so should you not have thought it wise to employ a strict editorial regime?

Me: Nope. There are the induvial stories of the three main characters, their interactions as a trio, the love story between two of them, the geo-political world-building you always get in a fantasy/SF work, sly digs at some parts of the genre and the less flexible of the readership, war, romance, rom-com, comedy, satire, politics and more world-building. Ya don’t fit that into 100,000 words without leaving a reader scratching their head at some stage. (And you’ve gotta give the supporting characters their space too, so folk realise they are people)

Person: Be that as it may, dear writer, if you were insisting on embarking on a work of such length should you not have sought out someone to help you with that? Proof reading, alpha-, beta- and editorial reading folk.

Me: No.

Person: That is a rather arrogant response, even foolhardy.

Me: What would be foolhardy would be trying to convince me to change even a sentence. I am fearfully territorial and a self-publishing indie-writer. I would only make the poor soul(s) who took up the task miserable. Reading my books is not compulsory, so I’ll take the hit.

Person: I am afraid I don’t understand.

Me: That’s OK. You shouldn’t be expected to, until you’ve tried writing for years. And then you’ll get it….although you still will reserve the right to say behind my back…… Weirdo…..

Person: But you spent….like how long on this work?

Me: That’s a bit of a toughie…..I guess two, it tends to get tangled up with the two previous volumes. I think the whole effort has taken five years, or so.

Person: Won’t you be…well…disappointed…if they do not sell in substantial numbers?

Me: They’re wrote an’t they? Two are Kindled and the last one will be. They will be out there. I’ll do another editorial stint on the first two and maybe make a bit of a fuss on some media corner about their existence. I can do no more.

Person: If you don’t mind me saying so, you have approached the subject like one of ‘follys’ rich English folk had constructed back in the 18th & 19th centuries.

Me: I repeat. They’re wrote an’t they? People can come and read them if they want to.

Person:……………………………………………………………

Me: I guess they must have gone. Oh well. Back to putting numbers on the chapters and experimenting with titles for said chapters while I await a cover.

Oh my! But I do love writing!!